Aeropress Coffee





Introduction: 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, and because I can bring this with me to work I was sold. I want to show you how it works.

Step 1: The Parts of the Aeropress

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

Step 2: Attach Filter

A re-usable paper filter is inserted in the filter screen, screen is then securely screwed onto the "bottom" tube via a bayonet mount.

Step 3: Placing on the Cup.

Place the now assembled "Bottom" tube on your cup.

Step 4: Add the Coffee Grounds

Choosing the perfect type of coffee is up to you. Unlike the more common french press, this system uses a finer grind. Experiment with types of bean, and grind till you find the one perfect for your taste. I prefer a dark roast with a fine espresso/turkish grind, however many prefer to use the fine/drip type grind.

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.

Step 7: Press the Coffee

Time to press the coffee. We insert the now empty "Top" tube. which has a plunger base, into the "Bottom" tube which has the coffee mixture in it. We press, using about 15 pounds (7 kg) of pressure, gently maintaining the pressure until the plunger goes all the way down. Gentle and consistent pressure is key, its simple to do. What happens here is the air in the tube is compressed, pushing the water through the grinds, through the filter and into the cup.

Step 8: Clean Up

Time to clean up. Once we have pressed the coffee, and removed the AeroPress from the cup, clean up is easy. Remove the filter screen, remove the paper filter, push out the compressed "puck" of grounds, rinse off the filter screen and the AeroPress itself, and rinse the paper filter if you want to reuse it, they are designed to be reused or disposed if you want. This may sound like a lot but it isn't, it takes maybe 30 seconds if that.

Step 9: Enjoy the Coffee

All done! It only took a few minutes, heating the water was the longest step. I like to take the "espresso" and add a equal quantity of hot water to it to make an Americano, the common cup of coffee. Or I can add milk to it instead and make a latte, or a small amount heated frothed milk for a cappuccino, or add some drip coffee for a "Red Eye" also known as a Canadiano... the list goes on forever. I have even heard you can use this to make tea, though I do not have loose leaf tea to experiment with. I really like the AeroPress it makes the best coffee I've ever tasted and its portable, inexpensive and near indestructible. Experiment, and enjoy, thanks for reading my article.



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    18 Discussions

    I'm on my second AeroPress, my first one lasted until I dropped it for the fourth time. It looked like a frankenstein press by that time, little pieces glued together here and there. I have a french press, espresso maker and roast my own beans...I prefer my espresso maker for the pure joy of crema...that being said I use my AeroPress more via convenience and it's portability...It's a neat contraption, I use a metal filter and it is different than the paper, harder to push the liquid through it and I like that.

    All that being said I use the "inverted" method basically how it sounds, plunger sitting in the main tube upside down and pouring your grinds and water through the bottom...stir carefully put the bottom on with filter, tighten, when ready flip right side up onto a cup. Why you allows you to control the amount of "soak" time the grinds are in contact with the also creates a vacuum when you flip it over. Happy Plunging!

    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!!

     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!!

    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.

    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 !

    4 replies

    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...

    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.

    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

    curious why not just use a one cup drip filter? why is pressing better?

    1 reply

    "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.

    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.

    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).

    2 replies

    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.

    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.

    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.

    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

    1 reply

    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.