Instructables
Picture of Aeropress coffee
This is my first Instructable. I did not invent anything here nor do I work for the company that designed the item shown, I simply think it is a cool coffee press. The Aerobie AeroPress is a coffee maker which uses air pressure to push water through grounds which are filtered by a paper filter, producing a drink that could arguably be called espresso. After that, I add some water, a bit of Splenda, and some half and half to make an Americano. I think it tastes great, as good as any coffee I have bought at a cafe, and from what I have read, some people say this device is as good as some $1000+ machines. But for $30 at Amazon.com, and because I can bring this with me to work I was sold. I want to show you how it works.
 
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Step 1: The parts of the Aeropress

Picture of The parts of the Aeropress
These are the parts of the AeroPress, parts are indicated in photo and described individually.

Step 5: Heating and measuring the water

You can heat your water however you choose. The "Top" tube is microwave safe and you can simply heat your water directly in it.

Step 6: Adding water to the grounds

The one of the unique qualities of the AeroPress is, not a lot of water, or steeping time, is needed to make your coffee.
fivedale2 months ago

Wow, I've been using the AeroPress for a couple of years (great coffee!) and never knew the filters are reusable. Thanks for the info!!

realety4 years ago
 The pressure is a big part of it, most of the best coffees (espresso, cappuccino, ect.) are produced under a certain amount of pressure. However usually to get the amount of pressure that is truly needed would require to buy the same machines at a coffee shop that cost several thousand dollars, the home versions of these machines can't get anywhere near the amount of pressure needed and cost way too much for the mediocre brew they create. This is one of the examples of the price makes the end product even better because it's much closer to what you should really get even if it is a little to hands on for a lot of people.        Great Instructable!!
imp0475 years ago
Great instructable! But I'm totally a fan! I've made coffee many ways. This is the fastest, easiest way to a great cup. The main drawback is how much coffee it uses to make a cup....easily twice as much. Even so, since trying this method six months ago, my plunge pot, espresso machines, mokapot, filters, percolator and ibrek have all grown dusty in the closet. A paper filter for this press lasts me about a week, maybe 20 presses. The flavor I get out is about 4x a press pot, not quite as much as a good espresso machine, but nowhere near the finicyness of that route. Also, I have found this method less sensitive to an inconsistent grind than a press pot, espresso machine, or ibrek. I like being able to use this with a cheap grinder and get a great coffee. When I use this technique to make an "americano" (ie, add hot water) I have found that what is created is more similar to toddy coffee- low acid- than anything else, so I suspect this extracts less oil. I have found myself preferring lighter, brighter roasts with this method as well, because there is, well, just more taste in the cup. A sip of a city roast kenya is like a mouthful of grapefruits. I just never got some of these flavors before- they were in there, this way really brings them out. I find myself roasting varieties I had written off as uninteresting-- now, they are really something, I like the funnel for two reasons- transfering the grinds to the brewing chamber and in making coffee in small cups. It makes things much tidier. I also like the paddle because it never touches the paper filter when I stir with it, unlike any other utensil. The shoulders prevent that from happening. Its also so big you can quickly mix grounds and water. I liked the tip about swelling the rubber piston head in hot water. I've been preheating the cup and all the parts but that. Lately my piston slips a little, maybe that will correct it.
chefmichel5 years ago
This looks like an illustrated "instruction booklet" from Aerobie Aeropress. Try to be more inventive , like how to make soup or cocoa with the press. Ummm, good coffe !
brightest_cyan (author)  chefmichel5 years ago
Thank you for your input, I will remember that next time I write an instructable.
add instructions for making your own filters - as you might have read there are dozens of threads on coffee forums about advantages of using metal or polyster filters (primarily to retain oils), and how to DIY. e.g. cut a swiss gold filter or buy rolls of industrial 5 micron polyester if you can find fDA (food) grade...
brightest_cyan (author)  ericjforman5 years ago
According to the inventor, during development they tested a variety of those kinds of filters, however the test panel all preferred the paper filters. For this device paper seems to do the best. Also the paper filters are so thin that 2000 filters uses the same amount of paper as a daily newspaper. you could cut them from ordinary filters but then you would have waste paper from the trim. And a pack of 350 is about $5.00 and I reuse each filter numerous times as they are designed to allow you to do so. I suppose tho if you really wanted to make your own filter to try just to see if you prefer it to he paper, buy a alternative filter, trace the outline of one of the included filters and cut to fit the filter holder.
PKM chefmichel5 years ago
Ditto- I am always a little cynical about instructables saying great things about a specific device, by new members, but we were all new once. I'll keep an open mind. Of course, what would be even better would be a guide on how to make your own aeropress from one of those icing syringes or plumbing parts and a coffee filter screen :D
KittyF5 years ago
curious why not just use a one cup drip filter? why is pressing better?
brightest_cyan (author)  KittyF5 years ago
"Better" is in the taste of the beholder but, to differentiate as to how this may be better than a drip machine depends on a great many factors, control of nearly all parts of the process is one big factor, quantity of water, temp, grind size, steep time, and pressure, the list goes on. Drips machines use gravity to pull the water through the grinds, and the systems are mostly automatic. Grind size is generally medium, too fine and it may clog up the machine and make a mess, too coarse and it will be too weak. Besides that there are generally few other controllable factors in a drip machine. This uses less water and a shorter steeping time by pressing the water through the grinds with air. This machine lets you control nearly every variable to great precision, the only drawback to that is it is more laborious to make a cup of coffee and you must be mindful to all the variables to ensure consistency fro cup to cup. Two of the attractive qualities which i feel contribute to what makes this a great coffee maker is this technique tends to avoid over-extraction. Over-extraction may cause a undesired bitter flavour. Additionally the acid level of the drink is less, and that prevents indigestion and heartburn that some experience from coffee. In the end its the drinker who knows what they like best, but to me, My Aeropress'ed coffee tastes as good as any Ive ordered from a cafe.
matsonward5 years ago
Great article. I too love the aeropress. I would like to point out that if the bottom tube and plunger are dry, running a little water on the rubber plunger makes it easier to press the coffee. If the rubber plunger is dry it can stick to the bottom tube which means you have to use inconsistent pressure.
tecneeq5 years ago
Meh, you obviously never used a Bialetti Moka ;). Some points i want to add: Instead of this plasticky contraption, consider a French Press, maybe Bodum style. They come for single cups and make good coffee. Why? Because you don't need filters and allthough glass can break, it has more style wich means your coffee tastes at least 13,4% better. A cup of coffee and a cup of Americano are in fact very different tastewise, they even require different beans. But more important: Espresso has a lot less coffein, therefore the Americano has a lot less coffein compared to regular coffee. Wich, however, can be good if you prefer to drink more than one or two cups. I only drink one cup in the morning and one after lunch and want the whole kick. I recommend you get yourself some towels made from cloth and reuse them. A paper towel is a crime against nature in my part of the world. Consider using a hand grinder to grind beans. I got a used Zassenhaus for 25 Euros from the net, wich needs 30 turns for a good Moka in the morning and 20 for a less stiff cup after lunch. The taste of freshly ground coffee is very special. You get extrapoints if you roast your own beans, i didn't make it that far. Yet. After all is said and done, your cup of joe looks very tasty and i would, even tho i complain a lot and all, still join you for a brew of your style ;o).
I have tried and own a French press, a electric espresso machine, two stove top espresso pots and a standard electric coffee pot. The Aeropress makes better coffee than any of them hands down. It is also the easiest to clean. I like my French press but it is a pain to clean. You really shouldn't judge this based on it being made of plastic. It is a great example of thoughtful design.
brightest_cyan (author)  tecneeq5 years ago
Thats cool, I don't always use a paper towel, I used one for this photo demonstration as it is nice and white. I think good coffee is only determined by the taste of the person drinking it, but I like the drink I get. A French press requires a longer steeping time, due to the coarse grind necessary, which imparts a over extracted bitter flavour, to my palate. The aesthetic qualities of the device are not important to me,when the product tastes first rate. I can reuse my filters, and the filter ensures a very clean cup. I have a quality burr mill on delivery, I eagerly await fresh grind. And as for roasting beans, I've put thought to it, but in due time.
austin5 years ago
i tried to make an aeropress replica out of pvc, well it didnt turn out too well, its really hard to make a precise plunger.
Lighthouse5 years ago
i think the instructable may look "promotional" b/c aeropress users become fanatical about the little piece of plastic. my old drip press went out the door not long after i became comfortable w/ my aeropress. i pack it w/ me when i travel. my usual way to prepare it is very similar to yours, but i use more grounds and press into a little milk frothing pot. this provides enough concentrated coffee to make about 3 -4 americano-type coffees from a single pressing. i grind my beans just before making coffee and one difference in my method is to pour enough hot water on the grounds to wet them first. I let that set for about 30 seconds, then fill the tube to the top and stir to form the "crema". The body of the "crema" will tell you if you're soaking your grounds too long. I threw out the funnel and the paddle (use a spoon). they're useless. after a lot of use the rubber tip of the plunger starts to get loose. i just set mine in my coffee cup and add some hot water to it for a few seconds. the rubber expands and becomes tight fitting again and the hot water heats my cup so my coffee stays hot longer. overall a nice 'structable
brightest_cyan (author)  Lighthouse5 years ago
LOL, in retrospect I guess my 'structable has all the markings of newbie, hehe. Thanks that you all have been cool about it. I wanted to show the basic way its used. I have seen several video presentations, but thought maybe a detailed step by step walkthrough might be better for some. I haven't tried using it to make other drinks, but eventually i might give it a try. Again thank you for your tips to help get the most out of my AeroPress.