French press coffee is simple and fairly quick to brew. In under ten minutes, you can have a pot of flavorful, dark coffee. Keep reading for the eight simple steps to a perfect cup of French press coffee.
Get started by removing the lid and filter from your French press. If your French press is made of glass, you may want to pre-heat it, to prevent possible cracking or shattering. To do this, pour hot but not boiling water into your French press and let it sit for a few minutes. Pour this water out before adding your coffee grounds.
Put water on to boil. For best brewing, you’ll want your water just below boiling, at around 195°F. To easily do this, bring your water to a full boil and then turn the burner off. If you wait a few seconds before pouring the water, it should be at just the right temperature.
If you have whole bean coffee, you’ll want to grind it to an even, coarse consistency, roughly the texture of Kosher salt. This grind size will allow plenty of extraction, without getting in the way of the filter. If you buy your coffee pre-ground, try to buy a coarse or French press grind.
Add your ground coffee to the French press. You’ll want about two tablespoons of coffee grounds for every six ounces of water.
Pour a small amount of water in a circle over your grounds and leave it for a few seconds. This will allow your coffee to bloom, releasing delicious aromas and oils.
Still making circles, pour the rest of the water onto your grounds. Gently rest the lid and filter on top of the water and grounds.
Let the coffee steep for three to four minutes. You can leave it a little longer to produce a stronger flavor, but you probably won’t want to go too far beyond four minutes. Letting your coffee steep too long can cause your beans to become over-extracted, giving your coffee a bitter flavor.
Pour the coffee into your mug or a carafe as soon as it finishes brewing. It’s better not to let coffee sit in the French press. In the brewer, it’s still in contact with the used coffee grounds, and sitting with them too long (even just 20 minutes) can lead to over-extraction and bitterness.
While you may prefer to use filtered water for the best flavor, it’s not required. Unlike in espresso machines and single-serve pod machines, French presses are not especially sensitive to the minerals in unfiltered water.If you dislike the thicker texture of French press coffee, you can pour it through a paper or cloth filter after brewing. Keep in mind that this may alter the flavor by removing the distinctive mouthfeel and natural oils of coffee brewed in a French press.