How To Use An Aeropress


by Alex Chapman

An AeroPress are one of the best kept secrets when it comes to making freshly brewed coffee in a quick and easy manner. These underrated appliances are light, small, easily portable and produce a delicious espresso style brew.

The AeroPress tends to have a devoted following amongst coffee lovers, and users of the appliance often claim that it makes the perfect cup of coffee.

The AeroPress is a simple gadget that is relatively new - it was created around ten years ago by a physicist, and Stanford lecturer named Alan Adler. The story goes that Alan loved drip coffee, but didn't love the time it takes to make one. Alan tried varying methods to produce the same tasting coffee, with different pieces of equipment. After trial and error, Alan stumbled across what is now know as the AeroPress.

Upon first glance, this coffee making device can appear complex to some. After all, it consists of a bunch of different parts; a funnel, filter cap, cylindrical chamber, and a plunger - some models include additional accessories too (like a coffee scoop and stirring paddle). However, once you know how to use an AeroPress, it's a very straight-forward device for brewing coffee.

It is important to note that an AeroPress can only make one cup of coffee at a time. This is great if you live alone or have family that prefer their brews with different beans or grinds. However, it can be impractical if you need to make large amounts of the same coffee at a given time.

Below we take you through a step-by-step guide to make an AeroPress coffee, as well as providing answers for some questions you may have about an AeroPress.

A step-by-step guide to making AeroPress coffee

Traditionally, there is a single method to using an AeroPress. However, we are going to show you two different ways to use the appliance. The first is the traditional way, the second is to make a stronger flavoured coffee.

Method 1

This is the original method used to make a coffee with an AeroPress coffee maker.

Measure out your coffee beans

When making coffee at home, it's always preferable to grind the beans yourself. Freshly ground coffee beans have a much more pleasing aroma and taste. As soon as coffee is ground, it begins to lose its flavour, so the end product won't be as tasty. Plus, when you grind your own fresh coffee, you can choose the grind size that's best suited to the method you're using.

An AeroPress coffee maker generally makes about one cup of coffee. So, you should measure out your beans accordingly. Of course, you can use more coffee if you prefer a stronger taste. However, a standard AeroPress coffee uses about 17 grams of coffee.

Grind your coffee beans

Once your desired amount of coffee is measured out, you can go ahead and grind it. The best type of coffee grinds for an AeroPress coffee maker is a medium-fine grind. There are different types of grinders available so the technique you use will depend on your type of grinder. For an automatic coffee grinder you'll just need to pour the beans into the grinder and press on.

The tools blades should quickly pulverise the coffee beans to a consistency that can be used in your plunger. In a manual grinder, you can usually pick the grind size so that it best suits the method you're using.

Heat your water

Water is one of the two ingredients required to make an AeroPress coffee, so it's important that you get it correct. The water should be hot, but not boiling. Boiling water can burn the coffee beans and cause a bitter taste.

We recommend heating the water to around 200 degrees (or slightly lower). However, do keep in mind that if the water isn't hot enough, it won't extract the coffee very well, and you'll end up with a weak taste.

Wet the paper filter

Put the AeroPress coffee maker together and pop it on top of a mug or cup. Lightly wet the paper filter with some warm water and place it inside the cap, in between the AeroPress and the cup.

Add the coffee

Your ground coffee should already be measured out, so you can go ahead and pour it into the tube of the AeroPress. Some models will have a funnel that is designed to cleanly and quickly pour the coffee in.

Pour in the water

Pour the water into the AeroPress until it reaches the top line on the coffee maker.

Stir

If your model comes with a stirrer, you can use this to stir the coffee and water. If it doesn't, you can just use a spoon.

Press the plunger down

Insert the plunger into the tube, and firmly press the plunger down until you hear a hissing sound. The coffee should then begin to pour into the cup or mug that's placed underneath.

Pour the coffee

Once the brewed coffee is in the mug or cup, it's ready to enjoy! If you've used the AeroPress to make a very strong espresso, you can dilute it with extra water, or add milk for a white coffee.

Method 2

Though it follows many of the same steps, this method is less common and slightly different. It's called the inverted method and is used to make a stronger brew.

Switch the AeroPress

For this method, you will actually be using the coffee maker upside down! So, switch the AeroPress around so that the tube that usually has the coffee poured into it is facing the bench. as

Follow the above steps

For this method, you will follow the same steps as above to measure and grind your coffee beans. You'll also follow the same steps to prepare your water.

Pour in the coffee

Pour the coffee into the end of the AeroPress that's facing up (this is the end that's usually attached to the mug or cup). As above, your coffee should already be measured out and ground.

Pour the water

Pour the water into the same end of the AeroPress and fill the chamber until it's nearly full.

Stir

If your model comes with a stirrer, you can use this to stir the coffee and water. If it doesn't, you can just use a spoon.

Steep

Let the coffee and water steep for about one minute. This is what enhances the flavour of the final cup of coffee.

Place the cap on

Place a paper filter inside the AeroPress cap, and put the cap on the end of the AeroPress (the same end that you poured the coffee and water into).

Flip over

Carefully (but quickly) flip over your AeroPress and place the other end over a jug or mug.

Press the plunger down

Insert the plunger into the tube, and firmly press the plunger down until you hear a hissing sound. The coffee should then begin to pour into the cup or mug that's placed underneath.

Pour the coffee

Once the brewed coffee is in the mug or cup, it's ready to enjoy! If you've used the AeroPress to make a very strong espresso, you can dilute it with extra water, or add milk for a white coffee.

FAQ's

Is it possible to make more than one cup of coffee with an AeroPress?

Aero Press coffee makers are designed to make a single of coffee. However, there is a way to create multiple cups using an AeroPress just once. To do this, you should make espresso shots rather than a long black coffee. Making espresso shots in an AeroPress involves using more coffee, so that the final cup of coffee is less diluted. To make an AeroPress espresso, you can check out our guide here. [insert link]

I have the authentic AeroPress scoop, how many grams is a scoop of this equivalent to?

You should only use the authentic AeroPress scoop to measure ground coffee. A single level scoop will weight about 11.5 grams, while a heaped scoop of coffee grounds will weigh about 14 grams.Please keep in mind that this is a general guide, and it's always best to use a scale to ensure preciseness.

Why is it hard to press my plunger down?

When making AeroPress coffee you should aim to use a fine to medium grind. When the grind is too fine, it can clog up the plunger and make it hard to press down.

If you're having trouble pushing down your plunger, you should wash out the coffee and try again with a slightly courser grind.

What happens if I use the inverter method, but let the coffee steep for longer than one minute?

The step of steeping coffee allows more time for the coffee to infuse in the water. So, you'll have a stronger coffee. However, if the brew time for the coffee is too long it can produce a bitter taste.


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