Introduction: Customize Your Own Portable Coffee Bags

Picture of Customize Your Own Portable Coffee Bags

Take them camping.  Throw them in your desk for emergencies.  Keep a stash in your car.  They are quick, tasty, and completely customizable...  They're coffee bags!!   

In just a few quick steps you can have flavored, sweetened or just plain black coffee wherever you need it!  The recipe is up to you!


Coffee grinder
Whole bean coffee
Non-Dairy creamer
Tea bags (the size used for 4 cup tea pots)

Step 1: Grind the Beans

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Grind the beans on the finest setting.  The more surface area you can create in the grounds, the more flavorful your cup of coffee will be.  I tried several grinds, but the finest works the best.  It gives the fullest flavor.  

Step 2:

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Add the coffee to a tea bag.  I use three table spoons for a dark cup of coffee.  My "cup" of coffee is closer to 2 c. of water.  

Step 3: Adding the Sugar

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Obviously, adding sugar is optional.  I have to admit, i'm not a purist when it come to coffee.  I enjoy a bit of sweetness in my cup of joe.  I add one teaspoon of sugar.  

Step 4: Adding the Creamer

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Be sure to use non dairy creamer!  They come in several flavors.  I really like the Italian sweet cream and of course, French vanilla.  Whatever you choice is add your desired amount.  I use a half teaspoon.   

Step 5: The Fold

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When the bag is filled with the desired amounts of ingredients, fold the flap over onto the bag.  Leave as much "slack" as possible to allow the coffee to move around in the bag when it is steeping.  (The coffee will expand when it steeps, so the more room for expansion, the better)

Step 6: Sealing the Bag

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Use your hot iron to press the flap and seal it.  The heat will cause the material to stick to itself, sealing your coffee mixture securely in the bag.  

Step 7: Steep and Stir

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Heat up some water.  Boiling water is preferred because the bag takes a little longer to steep than conventional coffee, and you still want your cup to be hot when its ready to drink! Be sure to press and stir the bag while it is steeping.  This will ensure you get the most flavor out of the bag!  You can remove the bag when your brew is at the desired potency.  I leave mine in...  

Now, sit back and enjoy!!  Mmmm....

If you make extras, which I recommend, store the bags in an air tight container to preserve the flavor.


mshonnie (author)2015-05-01

sheldon.kennedy.3382 (author)2015-01-04

I actually had this idea and tried it myself. As with most of my "original" ideas that I checked on the internet thousands of others have thought of this first. My motivation was that my wife bought this Keurig coffee maker that has these little cups that make one cup and charge a dollar each, which is outrageous (using the ink-jet printer customer rip-off model). I took a Salada tea bag apart by un-stapling, dumped the tea and put two teaspoons of ground coffee in the empty bag and re stapled after folding. Pouring hot water over it makes too weak a cup but if you put the bag in a microwave-safe cup add bottled water and microwave for two minutes it makes a better cup of coffee than the ridiculously priced Keurig.

mstyle183 (author)2012-02-06

hey man i'm guessing you entered this in the coffee contest? i wonder if something is wrong with the people reviewing the entries

terpodion (author)mstyle1832012-02-10

"Coffee contest"? Which one? The people reviewing the entries are most likely "coffee snobs" - like me. I tried the coffee bag idea decades ago and wasn't at all happy with the results. Without writing a treatise on proper coffee brewing technique, the coffee bag is far less than ideal.

mstyle183 (author)terpodion2012-02-15

lol i hope you like my coffee invetions.. i would love to hear your coffee snub opinion lol

terpodion (author)mstyle1832012-02-15

I commented on your invention. Not a bad idea. I also resisted going into a diatribe about the art of coffee brewing - which I easily could because, as you know, I'm a coffee snob.

mstyle183 (author)terpodion2012-02-16

thanks for the feedback!

Bruce2202 (author)2012-02-11

I just ordered the tea bags from Amazon. I have bought prepackaged coffee bags from the grocery store for camping trips in the past, but they are really expensive for what you get and I don't use many at a time and they go stale. I can't wait to try this!

chachingck (author)2012-02-09

Where do you find the tea bags to fill? Are they available anywhere?

mephisto1970 (author)chachingck2012-02-10

you can get empty tea bags like these either at specialty shops like Teavana ( ) or from places like Whole Foods in the tea section or at local co-ops.

mephisto1970 (author)2012-02-10

LOVE IT, particularly the ideas of incorporating the creamer and sugar, and the ironing to keep the bag sealed. Thank you!!!

rainbowkisses (author)2012-02-09

this is so cool i have left over bags from when i made herb bags for my stews, bouquet of garni they are called in Australia, Im back at college now and some sod keeps using my milk i leave in the fridge, so this is going to come in real handy, so long as they dont break into my locker, then i'll be really ticked off

Triplezee (author)2012-02-09

Here is a link to a website that sells the tea bags. I bought mine at a local tea shop!

mskillasmile (author)2012-02-09

This is a cool idea!Thank you for sharing.

beank (author)2012-02-09

Very neat idea....where do you get the empty tea bags?

SailorSue42 (author)2012-02-09

Thank you! Love this idea for boats. We cruise and go minimalist.
To help preserve the flavours I will wrap them in aluminum foil (impermeable to gases) and then a Ziploc(TM) against water. Not surprisingly, there is always some wet about.

msdrpepper (author)2012-02-09

Very clever idea. I did some more searching on Amazon and found a wide variety of products, including the one mentioned above - different sizes, some for just a one cup at a time, others larger, like your instructable for a "2 cup" size of coffee.

I used search strings like "refillable coffee filter bag" "empty coffee bags" "empty tea bags"

For those in UK I also found on

so looks like there are plenty of options and prices!! Most excellent idea as my coffee maker just died and the last one I got for "free" by buying a few months worth of coffee from - but they no longer offer the free coffeemakers for new subscriptions...and I'm too stingy to want to shell out $100+ for the K-style coffee makers (although I am enthralled with the single shot coffee maker concepts because I don't drink 8 cups of coffee in a day - I would make the 8 cups in my old coffeemaker thermos carafe and then reheat the next day or two when I wanted more. Of course, reheated is icky (but better than nothing... or maybe not?)... I already have gobs of loose coffee so I know I can get the reusable k-style filters if I do finally find a K-style machine at a reasonable price. But this will get me going in the meantime!! Thanks so much!

rafari (author)2012-02-08

I really like this idea! Thanks.

gamergrl22 (author)2012-02-08

What a good idea! This is great since I'm the only one who drinks coffee at my house and I'm lazy, lol!

Kiteman (author)2012-02-05

You can buy empty tea bags? Can you get them in the UK?

Kvozza13 (author)Kiteman2012-02-07

60 of them will run you $6.50.

Triplezee (author)Kiteman2012-02-06

You can in Minnesota! I bought one hundred for 4 dollars... I'm sure they have them in the UK as well. I had to go to a specialty tea shop/cafe.

Kiteman (author)Triplezee2012-02-06


stephenniall (author)Kiteman2012-02-07

Have a look on Ebay, There's a few sellers in Hong Kong selling them for a few quid.

jakeby (author)Kiteman2012-02-07

You can get them on and ebay, search for T-Sac or DIY teabag

Organize74 (author)2012-02-07

Do you store these in a ziplock bag? I'm wondering if they loose their flavor while sitting in a desk drawer otherwise. Just thinking about this.......I have to go make my coffee now.

Triplezee (author)Organize742012-02-07

I store mine in zip loc containers, so i dont know why a bag wouldnt work... I havent kept mine for longer than a few weeks though....

dg.gomes (author)2012-02-07

What are the size of these tea bags? I found to sell in in these dimensions 5cm x 6cm ; 6cm x 8cm and 8cm x 11cm but I'm not sure which one should I get.

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