With simple instructions and minimal cleanup, the AeroPress coffee maker is an excellent way to enter the world of manually brewed coffee. If you like your coffee sweet and flavorful, this may be the single-serving coffee maker for you!
The Aeropress is a relatively new device in the world of brewing coffee but it has quickly gained popularity as one of the easiest ways to brew delicious cups of hot java.
Before we get to the AeroPress instructions, let’s become familiar with this quirky contraption!
What is the Aeropress, and How Does It Work?
The AeroPress is a pressure-driven manual coffee maker that uses immersion and gentle pressure to brew an intense, sweet, and flavorful cup of coffee. The air pressure pushes water through your fresh ground coffee to make a delicious beverage in less than one minute!
Invented by Alan Adler, who spent most of his career designing products like the Sonic Fin Football and the Aerobie – a ring-shaped disc that was popular for its ability to fly long distances.
After drinking one too many bitter cups of coffee, he set out on a mission to create his own cup-at-a-time coffeemaker. Alan wanted something simple, portable, and quick, all while ensuring only the best flavors reached his cup.
The Aeropress is a surprisingly simple device consisting of three pieces. A filter cap for sealing off the top chamber. A plunger that fits inside the main section and applies pressure to water through your grounded coffee. And finally, an inner brew chamber that holds your coffee and filtered water.
Inside the box, you also get a funnel, paddle stirrer, a coffee scoop, 350 filters, a small filter holder, and a carrying bag. They really do intend for you to have all you’ll need to get started and take it with you on the road!
AeroPress Instructions for Making an Excellent Cup of Coffee
Brewing with the AeroPress is Easy! I broke it down into small chunks, so don’t freak out when you see the long list of steps.
What You’ll Need
- AeroPress Filters
- Fresh Coffee Beans
- Filtered Water
- Electric Kettle
- Burr Grinder
Grind Up Those Beans
You’ll want a fine grind consistency (a little finer than table salt). The brew time is so brief that an espresso grind will fully extract the coffee. For a single cup of coffee, use 20 grams of coffee beans.
Use an electric kettle to heat up your filtered water. For medium roast and dark roast coffee, a water temperature of 80 degrees Celcius (175 degrees Fahrenheit) works great. I tend to use a higher temperature for a lighter roast, around 85 degrees Celcius (185 degrees Fahrenheit).
Insert Filter and Attach Cap
Take one of your paper filters and place it in the AeroPress cap. Sometimes the thin filters stick together, so make sure you only grab one. Rinse the filter paper to remove any fibers that may be leftover from the manufacturing process. Finally, screw the filter cap onto the end.
Add Grounds to the Inner Chamber
Pour in your coffee grounds. I suggest using the funnel that comes with your kit to prevent making a big mess. Do not tamp the grounds. You’ll want to leave them nice and loose to assist in the immersion brewing process.
Gently Pour Water
Set the AeroPress coffee maker onto a nice sturdy mug (a cup with a narrow base may tip over). Grab your gooseneck kettle and gently pour hot water into the main chamber. Add water until it is above the number 1 mark for a single serving. I prefer looking down through the center of the brewing chamber to verify the water level rather than from the outside.
Mix It Up
Using the paddle, stir the mixture for 10 seconds. The paddle is designed to blend the hot water and grounds without scraping the paper filter.
Fit the plunger into the main chamber. I find it’s easier to insert the plunger at a slight angle.
Some Like to Wait
Ok. This step is a bit optional. The inventor, Alan Adlar, says that right after he stirs for 10 seconds, he immediately begins to plunge his brew. I have found that if you wait about a minute (including your stirring time), you can pull out more of the nuanced flavors from your beans to create that perfect cup.
Take the Plunge
Hold the chamber firmly with one hand and gently press down on the plunger with the other. Make sure to place your mug on a flat, sturdy surface. It should take about 30 seconds to press all the water through your grounds.
Do not force the plunger. If you press too hard, you will feel resistance and the plunger will stop. When that happens, wait for a second and then continue. Remember, pushing the water down through the grounds is all part of the process, so take your time.
When you hear a hissing sound, it’s time to stop plunging. You don’t need to press down until you smash the grounds. Pick up the AeroPress and set it to the side. You did it!
Remove the Filter Cap and Dispose of Your Grounds
Over a trash bin, remove the filter cap and press the plunger until you expel the filter and coffee puck.
Now you have to make some decisions. You can drink the concentrated brew straight (like an espresso shot) or add some ingredients to make it fancy. I like to add 240 mL (1 cup) of hot water for an Americano or add milk to create a creamy Latte. Sweeten it up with a little simple syrup to make the perfect dessert drink.
How to Clean Your New Gadget After You’re Done Brewing
Cleaning your AeroPress is easy! I take everything apart and use the leftover hot water from my kettle to thoroughly rinse each section. Since the plunger squeegees the inner chamber as you plunge, it’s basically already clean.
The dirtiest parts are the rubber section of the plunger and the filter cap. After being rinsed with hot water, allow everything to dry before you store them.
Why should You Make Aeropress Coffee Over Other Methods Like Drip or French Press?
Overall, the AeroPress creates the smoothest and sweetest cup of coffee you may ever taste. The results are a rich and full-flavored brew. With a quick brewing time and a combination immersion plus pressure design, it has everything you need.
Compared to a French Press, the AeroPress is quick and easy to use. Many people like the depth of a full immersion brew, but they find that some of the sediment inevitably ends up in their mug. The AeroPress produces great flavors without any sediment or grinds getting through to your cup of coffee.
Because the Aeropress creates pressure, it can extract a more concentrated brew than a regular drip coffee machine.
When Shouldn’t You Use an AeroPress
You can technically use any style of coffee grounds with an AeroPress, but I recommend using a medium roast. A fine grind guarantees that all of the components are extracted from your ground coffee in a brief time.
If you choose to use a more coarse ground coffee, then you will need to either increase the brew time or add more coffee to get a full-flavored result from your AeroPress coffee.
I find that when using light roast coffee, the AeroPress doesn’t extract some of the more subtle characteristics. This is most apparent in the flavor of Ethiopian beans, which are distinctive due to their flowery, fruity, raisin-like notes.
If you prefer a more full-bodied cup of coffee, I suggest you go with a French Press or a pour over brewer.
Additional AeroPress Tips and Tricks
Like other coffee brewing devices, there is a lot of room for experimentation and creativity when making AeroPress coffee. Here are a few tips and tricks to get you started.
Getting the Perfect Water Temp
The size of the AeroPress makes it great for travel. Unfortunately, not every destination will have a fancy electric kettle available. Wait about 2-3 minutes after removing the boiling water from its heat source (like a campfire) to get your water to a suitable brew temperature.
Brew Large Batches
You may have wondered, “Why isn’t there a larger sized AeroPress for batch brewing?” Well, that’s because the AeroPress is already capable of prepare up to 4 servings of coffee!
The numbers on the side aren’t just for educational purposes. If you’d like to make a big batch of AeroPress coffee for yourself and your buddies, simply add up to 4 servings of coffee grounds and enough water to reach the 4th mark. The brewing procedure is the same as described above, except you should use a decanter instead of a single-serve coffee mug.
Reuse the Coffee Filter
The inventor Alan Adler says that you can reuse the coffee filter. He said that one time he reused a single filter up to 80 times! Just rinse the paper after you are finished brewing and allow it to dry. This is great for when you are on your last filter and are waiting for your 2-day shipping order to arrive.
Quick Cold Brew Coffee
With the AeroPress coffee maker, creating cold brew coffee is easy! Use room temperature water, and stir for a full minute during the brewing process. Then plunge like usual over a glass filled with ice! Add milk and sugar to create the perfect summertime treat.
Try Something Different
You can also make AeroPress espresso shots for lattes or cappuccinos using the inverted method (upside down), which takes about 1-2 minutes to complete this special technique.
Turn your AeroPress over and insert the plunger. Use the AeroPress scoop to add coffee to the AeroPress chamber. Then pour in hot water, stir a few times, and attach the filter cap. Wait for up to 2 minutes, then carefully flip over onto your mug and press. While it’s not true espresso, it still makes a great mug of coffee.
Add Some Flavor
Finally, you may personalize your recipe by adding ingredients like cocoa powder or cinnamon to the AeroPress chamber to create unique flavors!
Brewing great coffee is an art that takes practice to perfect, but it’s easier than ever with the Aeropress. You can produce rich, sweet, and smooth-textured coffee without any particles or grinds making it to your mug. The Aeropress makes an excellent cup in around a minute, which is considerably faster than other methods! I hope our AeroPress instructions have helped.
If you need advice finding your next piece of coffee gear or if you have any questions about other brewing methods, please check out our other posts for coffee lovers!