French Press coffee is a classic beverage for not one but many, many reasons. And the thing about using a French Press is that it’s the easiest and most convenient way to prepare coffee. So let’s find out how to make French Press coffee at home.
You don’t have to worry about the amount of time it takes for the water to soak through the bed of your favorite coffee grounds. As long as the temperature of the water is right. And so long as you’re using an optimal coffee to water ratio, you’re going to end up with rich and heavenly French Press coffee every time.
The best part about French Press is that the coffee maker is not built with a paper filter. Instead, it has a stainless steel fine mesh screen that doesn’t stop the rich, aromatic essential coffee oils and tiny particles from entering your cup. And this means you can enjoy a cup of fuller-bodied, richer coffee.
So let’s get started!
Table of Contents
French Press Coffee - Advantages and Disadvantages
This particular brewing method involves steeping your coffee grounds in heated water. You steep and then press the coffee grounds out. And that’s about it. In that case, it’s the least time-consuming and easiest way to prepare delicious coffee.
Another notable advantage is that a single brewing cycle prepares coffee for more than just one person.
As for the downside, French Press coffee, no doubt, is susceptible to oiliness and bitterness. And that’s only natural because your brew remains in direct contact with the coffee grounds for a significant amount of time, during steeping that is. Hence, the oily and bitter nature.
French Press Coffee - The Basics
There have been scenarios where coffee drinkers have spent years trying to master the art of making delicious French Press coffee without achieving any success. Because, more often than not, they’re missing one primary element. And that is the right type of coffee grinder.
So you ought to also have a go at our list of these amazing user-friendly coffee grinders specifically designed for French Press.
French Press Coffee - The Ideal Coffee to Water Ratio
The most common size of a French Press coffee maker is 32 ounces i.e. 4 servings. But what if you want to prepare less or more coffee? Whatever the case, here’s the solution…
- For a single serving, 2 tablespoons of coffee beans for 1 cup or 8 fluid ounces of water.
- For 2 servings, 1/4 cup of coffee beans for 2 cups or 16 fluid ounces of water.
- For 4 servings, half a cup of coffee beans for 4 cups or 32 fluid ounces of water.
- For 8 servings, 1 cup of coffee beans for 8 cups or 64 fluid ounces of water.
How to Make French Press Coffee the Right Way At Home
These instructions are for preparing 4 servings of French Press coffee. That is 32 ounces.
Ingredients You Need
- 4 cups of cold water
- Half a cup of French Press coffee beans. And if you don’t wish to or cannot grind the beans right before brewing, then opt for the perfect coarse ground coffee for French Press.
Equipment You Need
- Coffee grinder
- Long spoon
- 32-ounce capacity French Press
- Stovetop kettle or an electric one
1. Measuring your coffee beans
As you may already know, take half a cup of coffee beans for your 32-ounce French Press coffee maker.
2. Grinding your coffee beans
Select the coarsest setting on your burr coffee grinder and grind those beans. In case you’re not using a burr coffee grinder, then grind in sharp, brief pulses using the blade grinder. Meaning stop every few seconds, then invert the coffee grinder and sharply shake it while you hold the lid. The grounds are bound to become evenly sized, coarse, and rough in that case.
We at Coffee Style Today, cannot stress more on the fact that the optimal grind size here should look like breadcrumbs. Then pour those freshly prepared grounds into your French Press.
3. Heating the water
For 32 ounces, you have to take 4 cups of water. Heat it using an electric or stovetop kettle. Once the water reaches the boiling point, turn off the heat. Then let it sit for about 60 seconds.
The ideal water temperature for preparing French Press coffee is between 212 degrees Fahrenheit (below boiling point) and 195 degrees Fahrenheit. So use your thermometer to determine the temperature of the water.
Now it’s time to pour the hot water into your French Press
4. Stirring and steeping
After pouring, stir vigorously. Make sure to use up and down movements for stirring.
The next and one of the most important steps is steeping your coffee. The minimum time required is 4 minutes. It’s enough for creating a robust brew.
But let me also mention that certain coffee roasts demand either a longer or shorter steeping time. So check the instructions printed on the packaging of the coffee beans or grounds you’re using.
5. Plunging the French Press
Once the timer sets off, press that plunger immediately all the way down to the bottom of the French Press coffee maker. And then drink your freshly prepared French Press coffee immediately.
French Press Coffee - Useful Tips
Warm Your French Press
Just to simplify the brewing method, it’s important to warm your coffee maker. But that’s only if you have the luxury of time at your disposal.
Heat some water and use this to rinse the French Press. It warms the coffee maker before you start brewing.
Use A Thermal Carafe
Are you more likely to drink your freshly prepared brew after a while? If yes, then consider it a sin to leave that fresh brew in your French Press. Because if you do so, then you’re only welcoming more bitterness. No wonder automatic pour-over machines come with thermal carafes.
So pour your French Press coffee into a thermal carafe where it’s going to remain hot for a very long time.
French Press Coffee - What Can Go Wrong and How to Fix It
Troubleshooting is a huge part of the process, particularly if you’re new to the art of French Press brewing. The two most common mistakes coffee drinkers make is adding boiling water and using poorly ground coffee.
In the case of the former, keep in mind that boiling water is only going to scorch your coffee grounds. Likewise, if the water is tepid, then full extraction is unlikely to take place. So let the water reach its boiling point, then turn off the heat. And allow the hot water to sit for a whole minute before pouring it into the French Press.
As for using poorly ground coffee, what works best with French Press is coarse grind size. The grounds should not contain too fine grit. As this often leads to your brew tasting bitter and muddy. It seems like such a rookie mistake, doesn’t it? The remedy though is a simple one.
If you want to know the perfectly low-maintenance way of brewing coffee, then the answer is French Press. It’s also the easiest and most delicious coffee brewing method. When done right, the result is creamy-bodied, strong, rich, and aromatic coffee. And now you CAN do it right following the instructions I’ve discussed in this article.
Use high-quality coffee beans or coffee grounds specifically created for French Press. Keep in mind to prevent over-extraction, which means decant your fresh brew immediately. Uneven grinding should also be avoided. The same applies to boiling water.
This might seem like a lot to remember, but once you get used to preparing coffee this way, there’s no turning back.
Coffee Style Today is an authentic coffee blog created by and for caffeine enthusiasts. The expert team offers the most constructive tips on how to elevate your at-home brewing skills.