How to Make Pour Over Coffee
- March 18, 2023
When you’re looking for the perfect cup of coffee and you’re not in a rush, it’s hard to beat pour over coffee. This popular brewing technique is low-cost and easy to learn, and it produces a clean cup with clear flavors. In this article, we’ll explain how to make pour over coffee and provide some pour over coffee instructions you can use at home. By the end, you’ll be a pour over coffee expert — and, quite possibly, the hero of breakfast as you make perfect pour overs for yourself and your family.
What is the Pour Over Method?
The pour over method is a way of making coffee that involves pouring hot water over ground beans in a filter to make a cup of joe. It’s not as simple as it sounds, but with a little practice, you’ll be able to master this technique in no time.
Benefits of Pour Over Versus Other Methods
The pour over method is one of the most popular ways to brew coffee at home because it gives you complete control over how your drink turns out. Using this method allows you to dictate the water temperature and contact time with the grounds, giving you more of a say in how acidic or bitter your final cup tastes versus other brewing methods. The slow process also helps prevent burning your beans or causing them to become bitter when they’re overheated.
As you follow pour over coffee instructions, you might notice some similarities to the drip coffee method. However, pour over coffee makes a much more delicate, complex cup that’s rooted in the basics. You may be reminded of simpler times when there were no coffee makers with flashy buttons and functions. With the pour over method, it’s just you, your beans, some fresh water, and a pour-over mechanism — resulting in a morning ritual you might soon grow to love.
Considerations for Making Pour Over Coffee
There are a few things you can do to ensure your pour over coffee turns out great every time. Here are the top considerations:
- Coffee bean quality. Use fresh, flavorful, single-origin coffee beans that lend themselves to the pour over method. Light and medium roasts work well.
- Water quality. Use filtered water. If you wouldn’t drink it as a glass of water, it doesn’t belong in your coffee.
- Coffee grind size. Grind your beans right when you’re ready to make coffee; coffee starts to oxidize and age immediately after grinding, so grind only what you need. The grind size is important, too. Depending on the method, go for a medium-fine grind for single cup servings, or medium for larger ones like Chemex.
- Water temperature. The ideal temperature for a pour over coffee is between 200 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. An electric kettle will allow you to boil water to the exact temperature you need.
Materials and Items Needed
To make a pour over coffee, you’ll need:
- Coffee beans
- Filtered water
- A coffee grinder
- Pour over filter
- A kitchen scale that measures in grams
- A pour over device; popular brands include Chemex, Hario, and Kalita Wave.
- Optional: a gooseneck electric kettle to help expedite the water-heating process, get a precise temperature reading, and make the pouring process easy
Steps to Make Pour Over Coffee
Once you learn how to make pour over coffee, you might never go back to drip coffee from a machine. Here are the pour over coffee instructions you need to know:
- Weigh and grind the beans. A good rule of thumb is a 1:17 coffee to water ratio; so, for example, for 700 grams of water (1.69 cups), you’ll need about 42 grams of coffee. For half that size, use 21–22 grams of coffee per 350 grams of water. Adjust the size up or down based on your preferences.
- Heat the filtered water to 200–205F.
- Place the filter in the pour over device. Pre-rinse the filter with hot water, and discard the water before brewing. Add your ground coffee to the filter. Gently tap the device to create a level brewing surface.
- Bloom the coffee. Begin pouring some of the hot water slowly over the coffee, moving from the center in a spiral toward the edge and then back to the center. This process should take about 15 seconds, with the goal being to completely saturate the coffee grounds. Wait another 30 seconds to let the coffee “bloom.”
- Start your second pour. Repeat the pouring process of your first pour, and wait another 45-60 seconds. Continue pouring water up to the predetermined amount of water you are using from Step 1, based on the amount of coffee in your pour over.
How to Adjust the Pour Over Process
You may find that you need to adjust the pour over process to get the exact taste and strength you want. Factors that can impact the end results include the coarseness of your grind, the amount of coffee you’re using, water temperature and quantity, and the quality of both your beans and water.
Bottom line: Don’t be afraid to make adjustments as you go. If your coffee tastes weak, for instance, grind your beans a bit finer. If it’s bitter, you may need a coarser grind. Coffee too hot or not hot enough? Adjust your water temperature; some people like using an electric kettle that shows precise temperature readings. Keep experimenting with the pour over process until you get it just right for your liking.
Pour Over FAQs
Q: What do I need to make pour over coffee?
A; A good quality pour over filter, a digital scale, a timer and a mug or carafe is all you really need, but you can also get a dedicated pour over device and accessories like a goose-neck kettle to make the process even more efficient.
Q: How much water do you need for pour over coffee?
A: The general recommendation is a 1:17 coffee-to-water ratio; for example, 42 grams of coffee per 700 grams of water.
Q: How much coffee for pour over?
A: The 1:17 ratio applies here, but this also depends on how strong or weak you like your coffee. Play around with the recipe until it’s the way you like it.
Q: Can I make a pour over without a dripper?
A: Yes! Many people prefer using their favorite mug or a glass carafe instead of buying another piece of equipment. This is also a good way to test out the process before buying a pour over device.
Q: Can you make iced coffee with a pour over?
A: Absolutely. Simply substitute ice for some of the water you would use for brewing, and brew the pour over directly onto that ice.
Q: What are the best beans for pour over?
A: This is entirely based on your taste preference. Our single-origin beans are light or medium roasted and generally work best for pour overs. Our blends also work well but are not quite as unique in terms of flavor profile.
Q: Can I use pre-ground beans for pour over?
A: There’s no harm in using pre-ground beans for a pour over, but you won’t be able to control the coarseness of the beans this way unless you put the ground beans in a grinder. Ground beans will also not be as fresh as beans that you grind immediately before making a pour over.
Q: How long does it take to make pour over coffee?
The entire process should take 3 to 8 minutes, depending on your brew method.
If you’ve been searching for the perfect cup of pour over coffee, look no further than our pour over coffee instructions above. Learning how to make pour over coffee is simple, and the end results are delicious. The process will force you to slow down, take your time, and truly appreciate the cup of pour over coffee in your hands.
Need more help learning how to make pour over coffee for Chemex or other devices? Feel free to reach out to us at Servant Coffee with any questions, and shop our complete selection of coffee, equipment, merchandise, and gifts at servantcoffee.com.