How to Make Coffee




About: A Northern Ireland based maker with a propensity to cause trouble and freshly constructed family.

From beans to cup this instructable will show you the whole process right the way through...

Step 1: Getting Your Beans.

You can get your pre-roasted beans from loads of places, many coffee shops, starbucks and clements included, along with your local supermarket.

Reading the packet/can should help you choose though phrases like 'rich aroma' and 'subtle blends' are a given, look for the kind of coffee you like/want, remember if ytou want you can get flavour infused beans aswell, though if they are much more expensive than the same without the flavour consider infusing them at home.

Step 2: Grind 'Em Up!

Our next step is to grind the beans for one of our three ways of making the coffee, use a coarser grind for making it with a French press or cafetiere, fine ground are generally great for the fancy coffee machines and filter ones alike.

If you don't have a coffee grinder think outside the box a little, a herb grinder can work or possibly a blender if you are a blendtec employee...

Step 3: Making: the French Press/cafetiere

This one isn't too complicated, put a little hot water in the bottom of the cafetiere to warm the glass, swill it out and put in your grounds, most people have the little spoon/mini ladle, that gives you a pretty decent amount per cup though a heaped dessert spoon of grounds per cup is a reasonable measure.

Add your boiling water up to the level just below the highest point the filter will sit at, not a paper filter, the mesh circle that is...

Let your coffee brew! This isn't instant, wait between 6 and 8 minutes get the biscuits out, potter around but don't take it early and ruin the coffee quality...

After the time is up slowly and carefully slide the plunger on top down to the bottom, take care doing this or you'll end up with gritty coffee.

When pouring go slowly, it'll help keep the grounds from unsettling, especially on the last cup.

Step 4: Making: Coffee/Espresso Machine.

One thing, before I start on this step it's Espresso Not Expresso there is no X stop saying it like there is people, you'll upset the Italians...

So one we go, depending on the machine it'll work a little different but the process is similar throughout, usually you have to let the machine heat up its water first.

If it has a little place for the coffee to go, usually on the nozzle attachment with a handle load it in and tamp it down gently, lock it on in place and when the temperature gauge hits 100C you're good to go.

Flip the switch or button, After putting the cup in place under the nozzle.

Depending on this kind of machine some have little pods like hose kenco ones, some have other ways of loading up though most work like the one pictured.

Step 5: A Drip or Percolator Machine.

These are very simple machines to use and load.

Drip ones, like the ones in offices and many american diners are simple things that slowly fill a pot up with hot coffee. Most of these will have a paper filter though you can get a cleanable metal one to replace them and some now come with one. You simply load your grounds in to the filter (usually a conical one) after putting it in the holder or place it goes and the turn the machine on, once it has heated its after up it'll put hot water through the coffee slowly brewing as it goes. Once the pots is full of nice hot coffee enjoy... Don't stick your head under it, unlike a bar tap this will drip boiling water in to your face...

A percolator works almost exactly the same way as a drip machine, the main difference being that it forces the coffee through the filter a bit more and gives you a cup pretty quickly, as a result these are made in to mini coffee makers quite often, since you only need to heat water and point it through a filter...

Step 6: The Explodinator... Stovetop Cafetiere/Moka Pot...

These little Italian inventions are to say the least unpredictable, they're great for making a cup of extra strong coffee but ours did manage to explode coffee all over the walls once, my guess, superheated water issues...

You put water in to the bottom portion and tightly pack coffee in to the middle bit...

Stick it on to the stove and hope against hope that it wont explode, ok they're not really that bad but they can burst.

These work the same way as a percolator except under pressure, the water is heated up until it expands enough to be forced through the packed in coffee... It's advisable that if you buy one look for a brass valve sticking out the side, if the filter bit clogs the valve will release the pressure from the steam causing minor burns instead of a catastrophic explosion...

I've thrown in a little cutaway view of how these work in the second picture since they're simply made but a bit complicated...

Step 7: Instant...

Now some will be snotty about instant and some will also realize its on the side of the can/jar...

All the same making instant coffee isn't too complicated, goes something like this...

- Get the kettle going
- Get cup
- Add granules, one teaspoon normally add two for good strong coffee
- Add milk to tastes and stir up with granules (it's a clever trick that makes it a bit closer to real coffee)
- Add your boiling water
- Add sugar to taste

Woah, that was complicated but that's every common method I can think of when it comes to making coffee, if I grew it I'd have a circle of life 'ible going on...

Read on for authentic after jitters...

Step 8: Drip...

Drip coffee's fairly simple to make...

You need:
- A filter
- Coffee grounds
- Source of hot water.

The machine itself is also fairly simple, bartboy made one out of Knex, with two filters, also because it's bare it makes it easy to see how it goes together.

Basically water goes through the coffee and then the filter, infusing on the way with the grounds staying in the filter, much like a percolator, just more manual...

Step 9: Jittery Much?

Learn to make Turkish Coffee with Brennn10's 'ibles here.

So I've just made coffee with every coffee method in my house...


- 2 cup cafetiere
- 8 cup cafetiere
- one espresso, one machine coffee
- One stove cafetiere, of doom
- Mug of instant
- One percolated cup

Later and I've got to say it was worth doing it, just to see what'd happen, well thankfully I already had a full blown caffeine addiction so I had some protection due to tolerance but you know what? I'm reasonably sure I'm on the verge of seizure, it's a minor worry but worse is the fact that my attention span is gone, it's taken me a while to write this word to word...

But all the same I enjoyed making this 'ible a huge amount, now I've got to go occupy myself, where's the badger, hell better yet I'm going to have a digging race with the rabbit, no I'm going to play god... Wait I got it! I'm going to go dribble on myself as my brain slowly shuts down due to poisoning from caffeine...

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    84 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Distillate of cherry pepsi coffee, coffee blends etc.


    2 years ago

    Has anyone distilled concentrated coffee for the potential aroma??? I have.


    7 years ago on Step 6

    My moka pot hasn't had any issues with pressure, but the coffee is extremely bitter. I thought the point of espresso was that it was made so quickly it didn't have time to get bitter. Nothing like any of the espressos I've gotten in cafés here in Europe. I think my grind might be too coarse, but coming from the U.S., I haven't seen espresso grind up close before, and I'm not sure. Any ideas?


    7 years ago on Step 6

    Grind size is key to this maker, you should have it finer than press pot coarse, but not as fine as espresso coffee. As others have said, don't pack it down, this is normally the cause of spluttering and the safety valve going and you end up with no coffee.


    7 years ago on Step 3

    I guess it depends on the coarsness of your grind, but I would never brew a press pot for that long, normally its about 3-4mins maybe 5 maximum. Anymore and it will probably taste quite bitter. Also most say that you should use water just off the boil to prevent any unwanted bitterness.


    9 years ago on Step 3

    The only thing I'd add to this excellent instructable has to do with the French press method. I've found that after pouring the water, take a spoon and give it a good stir before placing the plunger top back on. That way the coffee grounds mix in completely with water instead of having some grounds sit on top. Very nicely done!

    2 replies

    Reply 7 years ago on Step 3

    I second that. Stirring the grounds with the hot water releases the carbon gasses expelled from the beans and aerates the coffee for a fuller richer taste.

    The Locksmithifredsayred

    Reply 8 years ago on Step 3

    Oooo I'll try that! I use a French Press, and in my opinion, it's the best way to make coffee.


    7 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks for sharing this--I recently acquired a french press that has no instructions. With your help, I made such a good cup of joe I'm giving away my old Mr Coffee!


    Reply 7 years ago on Introduction

    Haha. Try two. That's what I do for my morning brew. ;) Puts a little pep in my step. Just a little.

    Table spoon and dessert spoon are the same thing methinks, tea spoons the little one but looking at my table and dessert spoons I see nothing to differentiate other than what they got stamped on in the factory...


    8 years ago on Introduction

    You MUST NOT pack the cofee tightly,or teh hot water can't run well into the coffee,resulting in a disgusting quality of beverage.

    (I'm italian,I know hot to make a GOOD coffee...)


    8 years ago on Step 6

    most stove top espresso maker's have a release valve on the side it is that brass thing at the top of #1

    2 replies

    Reply 8 years ago on Step 6

    They do but if you get it wrong they'll still blast the grounds over the kitchen, it just stops the boiled piece from exploding under pressure though...