Is Iced Coffee Really Illegal In Canada? (Find Out Here!)

A crazy rumor is going around that iced coffee is illegal in Canada, and it’s set off a whirlwind of speculation across social media.

But is it just a rumor, or is iced coffee actually banned in Canada? 

You don’t want to end up in trouble for ordering your favorite iced coffee, so in this article, we'll give you the definitive answer so you know exactly what’s on the menu this summer.  

Is Iced Coffee Illegal In Canada? (The Controversy Behind It) 

People have taken up searching on Reddit and asking Canadian friends and family members if it’s true that iced coffee is illegal in Canada.

Luckily, this is no more than a rumor. 

Iced coffee is not illegal in Canada, and as far as the internet has informed me, it's not illegal anywhere in the world. 

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Who Started the Rumor That Iced Coffee Is Illegal In Canada?

This rumor originated on TikTok in 2021 when content creator Taylor Jackson released a video explaining the "story" of what made iced coffee illegal in Canada.[1]

He said that Canada gets most of their coffee from Columbia, Brazil, and Guatemala and that in 2007 Canada signed a trade deal with the Christian Labour Association of Canada (CLAC) to purchase coffee beans from those countries.[2 

Allegedly, this trade deal was for over $30 million, and the Prime Minister at the time, Stephen Harper, decided to cancel the deal and save the money. This decision by Harper led to a coffee shortage, and iced coffee in Canada was banned.    

Now, this is quite a story, and the rumor that this made iced coffee illegal in Canada quickly did the rounds on social media.

There's only one issue: it's completely false. Iced coffee is not illegal, and has never been. 

Do a quick search for a Canadian Starbucks menu and see that iced coffee drinks are still available. 

Canada Flag Blowing On Nice Sunny Day

What Type Of Coffee Is The Most Popular In Canada? 

Coffee is popular across Canada, and over 34% of adults drink it 1-3 times a week.

Hot coffee drinks are more popular than cold varieties (which makes sense given the colder temperatures in the winter). 

survey in 2019 found that the most popular type of coffee was drip coffee, with over 69% of the population drinking it regularly.[3] 

The 2nd favorite was iced coffee, with about 25% saying they drink it frequently.  

Many people say that coffee and iced coffee tastes different in Canada, especially compared to US coffee.

This is because the most common flavor profile in Canada is Tim Horton's coffee which is a darker roast than Starbucks. 

While Tim Horton’s coffee tastes different from Starbucks’, it’s not all that different from coffee I could get at any diner. 

Cold Brew Iced Coffee

How Do Canadians Make Their Iced Coffee? 

Iced coffee is not illegal in Canada, but Canadians tend to use slightly different ingredients and a slightly altered method to make their iced coffee.

Tim Hortons is the most popular home coffee brand in Canada and it's made from Arabica coffee beans.

I’d say that Tim Hortons blend is milder and isn't as bitter, but has a smooth-yet-robust flavor profile. 

Cold brew coffee is much less popular than ice coffee, so you won't find it as a base in many of their iced coffee drinks. 

There's nothing more Canadian than a maple syrup iced coffee, so here's a quick guide on how to make one:  

  • 1
    Brew The Coffee 
    Place coffee into the cafetiere (French press), add boiling water, and leave it to steep for about 5 minutes.  
  • 2
    Add The Syrup
    Press down on the plunger to filter out the coffee grounds,  then pour black coffee into a glass. Add maple syrup (how much you add will depend on preferences).  
  • 3
    Cool It Down 
    Stir in milk and add ice to the drink. This will cool the coffee down, allowing the ice to melt into the iced coffee drink and further dilute it.  
  • 4
    Add any extra sugar or sweetener to iced coffee and enjoy! 

Frequently Asked Questions About Coffee In Canada

Is Iced Tea illegal in Canada? 

No, iced tea is not illegal in Canada and is not illegal in any country in the world currently.  

When was coffee introduced to Canada? 

Coffee was first referenced in the Canadian history books in 1668 after the colonization of North America. There are now over 14 billion cups of coffee consumed in Canada every year.  

Are caffeinated alcoholic beverages illegal in Canada? 

Yes, alcoholic beverages with added caffeine are prohibited in Canada, but some drinks manufacturers have got around this by adding guarana to their drinks which contains caffeine. This isn’t technically breaking the rules, but it does result in caffeinated alcoholic beverages.[4] 

Are Canadians big coffee drinkers compared to Americans? 

When it comes to overall coffee consumption, America is the biggest consumer, with over 27,310,000 bags of dry coffee beans consumed a year. However, Canada consumes more coffee per capita and is 10th in the world for coffee drinking per person, whereas the US comes in at 26th 


Iced coffee definitely isn’t illegal in Canada, and it’s a good thing because it’s one of the most popular coffee drinks across the country.

Hopefully, this article has helped dispel the myth, but remember, whether you're watching videos about iced coffee, weight loss, politics, or aliens - remember to take information from TikTok, and all social media, with a pinch of salt.  






Kayla Stavridis

Head of Marketing

Kayla Stavridis
Kayla Stavridis is a coffee enthusiast and Head of Marketing for Barista HQ. She blends her professional insights and experience with a deep passion for all things coffee. Kayla offers a unique, hands-on perspective on coffee culture and trends. You can find her sipping a cold brew with just a touch of milk on the beach in the afternoon and a Corona with lime in the evening.

My favorite drink? I'd go with... Cold Brew

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