What Is Pour Over Coffee? Here’s How To Make The Best One

Mike C
Written By Mike C

I've been writing about coffee and espresso machines for 3 years. My goal is to provide you with helpful content that you can trust based on my own personal experiences, information from manufacturers, and tips and tricks I've gathered from other coffee and espresso machine users.

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How To Make Pour Over Coffee The Right Way

Pour Over Coffee
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The pour over method of brewing coffee has become increasingly popular among coffee enthusiasts. Why is pour over coffee better than a cup of joe from a drip machine? For starters a pour over can make a more flavorful cup of coffee because of all of the levers you have more control over (temperature, speed, etc.). It will take a bit more time to prepare compared to using a coffee maker, but if you love coffee you’ll love the process.

What Is A Pour Over Coffee Maker?

A pour over coffee maker will be made of glass or stainless steel and shaped almost like an hour glass. The cone shape at the top is designed to hold a filter. That’s where you put the ground coffee. As you pour hot water into the top, the coffee is extracted and flows through to the bottom of the coffee maker.

Glass pour over coffee makers from brands like Chemex or Bodum are extremely popular because they work well and are attractive. However, because they are made of glass they are more fragile. If you are concerned about glass, the more durable stainless steel option may be better for you.

Do You Need A Scale For A Pour Over Coffee?

If you are wondering how to make pour over coffee without a scale, unfortunately it will not turn out well. That’s because to make it correctly, you need a very specific ratio of coffee and water as measured by weight (see the next section).

Tablespoons, teaspoons, cups and other measuring utensils you may have around the kitchen won’t cut it because to get the ratio exact you’ll need fractions of those measures. That will be hard to eyeball. Your best bet is to buy an a kitchen scale so you can measure the weight of both the coffee and the water.

How Many Grams Of Coffee For A Pour Over?

How much coffee for a pour over will depend on how many cups you want to make. A standard pour over uses a weight ratio of 17:1 water to coffee. If you want to make a stronger coffee, then use a ratio of 16:1 or even 15:1. Using less water, makes a more concentrated coffee.

Standard 17:1Standard 17:1Medium 16:1Medium 16:1Strong 15:1Strong 15:1
# Cups of Coffeewater (g)coffee (g)water (g)coffee (g)water (g)coffee (g)
2 cups342322302
4 cups684644604
6 cups1026966906
8 cups136812881208
10 cups170101601015010
How Many Grams Of Coffee For A Pour Over

These are the three most recommended ratios. I wouldn’t recommend experimenting much beyond this range, but if you choose to do so, this online calculator would be quite helpful.

How To Grind Beans For Pour Over?

If you are using a cone-shaped brewer for pour over coffee, then you’ll want a medium or medium fine coffee grind. The finer the grind, the more quickly and easily the coffee flavor comes out. So if you look a more flavorful cup of coffee, go with the medium fine grind. If you don’t, start with medium and go from there.

Coarse grinds won’t work for a pour over as you won’t be able to extract enough flavor from them and your coffee will taste acidic. On the other end, if you grind coffee too fine, then it will taste really bitter.

If you don’t have a coffee grinder with medium or medium fine settings, you’ll need to get one. There are manual as well as electric grinders to choose from depending on your budget. A Burr grinder will give you the most consistent grind; others will produce pieces more irregular in size. The more consistent the grind, the more even the extraction and the more body your coffee will have.

What Water Temperature For A Pour Over?

195 to 205 degrees Fahrenheit is the recommended water temperature to use when preparing a pour over. This is just before the water would begin to boil (212 degrees). You don’t want to use boiling water because it will extract even more coffee from the grinds and lead to a bitter taste.

A digital water thermometer can help you ensure you get the temperature to just the right point.

How To Use A Pour Over Coffee Maker?

Before you get started, make sure you’ve gathered the following supplies:

Then, follow these steps to make your pour over

  1. Measure the weight of water and coffee beans you need per the table above.
  2. Grind the beans to a medium or medium fine consistency.
  3. Heat water in the gooseneck kettle until it is just below boiling.
  4. Insert the filter into the top part of your coffee maker. If using a paper filter, follow these instructions to fold. Wet the filter with a bit of the hot water.
  5. Add the ground coffee to the filter and shake gently so the grounds settle.
  6. Pour just a small amount of the hot water over the coffee grinds to wet them. Wait 30 to 45 seconds while the grinds “bloom,” a process that improves the coffee flavor.
  7. Following the bloom, slowly pour the remaining water in the kettle over the grinds in a circular motion. Take your time and try to ensure that all the grinds stay wet by pouring near the edge. It can take as long as 3 to.4 minutes to complete this process. Do not rush it!
  8. When all of the water has filtered through the coffee grinds, you can remove the filter. If paper, discard.
  9. Your pour over coffee is now ready to enjoy!

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