Recent Posts

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Make Coffee Without a Coffee Maker

Make Coffee Without a Coffee Maker

If you don’t have a coffee maker available and want hot coffee, here are seven ways to make coffee without a coffee maker:

1. Buy coffee at a coffee shop, restaurant, or convenience store

This is a way to get coffee without using a coffee maker.  If you drink coffee a lot, you will save money by making your own coffee at home.  Coffee at a convenience store costs about $1.50 per 20 oz cup.  Coffee at a coffee shop costs about $2.00 per 20 oz cup.  If you make your own coffee at home, it costs about 50 cents per 20 oz cup to make your own coffee using quality coffee beans or ground coffee.

2. Instant coffee

People sometimes overlook instant coffee and focus instead of brewing coffee using coffee grounds.  Instant coffee is cheap and all you need is hot water and the instant coffee crystals.  Instant coffee is dehydrated coffee that dissolves easily in hot water.  To make one cup of instant coffee you can microwave a coffee cup of water for about 2 minutes, 30 seconds and then stir in instant coffee powder.  To make more than one serving of instant coffee, you can heat a tea kettle of water and make multiple cups of instant coffee at once.

Container of instant coffee powder
Instant Coffee
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher
Instant coffee does not taste like brewed coffee to me.  It tastes a bit like coffee, but I think it is really a different drink than brewed coffee.  I suppose this is like the difference between fresh milk and powdered milk.  Both are milk, but powdered milk does not quite taste like fresh milk.  However instant coffee does have some caffeine, although not as much as brewed coffee, and can get you through a situation where you need to make coffee without a coffee maker.

Instant coffee powder looks like coffee grounds, but dissolves completely in water
Close-up of Instant Coffee Powder
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher

3. Cowboy coffee

You can brew coffee using coffee grounds without a coffee maker.  The process involves letting coffee grounds steep in a pan hot water for a few minutes.  The coffee grounds settle to the bottom of the pan and you can carefully pour off the coffee, leaving the grounds at the bottom of the pan.    This article has more detailed instructions on making cowboy coffee without a coffee maker.

4. Pour Over coffee dripper

This is a method of making pour over coffee without a coffee maker.  You place a cone filter in a plastic dripper on top of a coffee cup and pour hot water over the coffee grounds- hence “pour over”.  This article has details of how to make pour over coffee without a coffee maker.

Plastic cone that fits over coffee cup
Coffee Dipper to make Pour Over Coffee
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher

5. Put grounds in a paper coffee filter and steep

This is for people who want hot coffee but do not want cowboy coffee.  Cowboy coffee and French press coffee actually contain fatty substances that increase cholesterol.  If you use a paper filter, you nearly eliminate this harmful compound from your cup.  You can place coffee grounds in a cone filter, filling it about 1/3 of the way.  You can also do this with a basket filter if you do not have cone filters.  Then cinch the top with your fingers or use  a rubber band.   Place this “coffee bag” in a cup of hot water and let it steep for about 3 minutes.  This way you can make a cup of filtered brewed coffee without a coffee maker.

Coffee grounds in a paper coffee filter
Steep coffee grounds using a coffee filter without a coffee machine
Image Source: Dr. Penny Pincher

6. French press coffee

OK, a French press is actually a coffee maker, sort of.  You place coffee grounds in the bottom of a glass pot and add hot water.  A French press has a plunger that you press to screen the grounds and hold them at the bottom of the pot.  You can get a French press really cheap and you do not need power to use a French press pot- only hot water and coffee grounds.  This article describes French press coffee and how to make it.

7.  Coffee tea bags

Folgers and other companies make coffee in tea bags that you steep in hot water.  I have used these on camping trips to make coffee without a coffee maker.  I think this coffee is a bit better tasting than instant coffee and is nearly as convenient.  Here is a discount on a quantity buy from  Folgers Classic Roast Coffee Singles, 19-Count Single Servings (Pack of 6).  You can find these coffee tea bags in grocery stores as well.

Coffee Maker Options

If you drink a lot of coffee, it is hard to beat the convenience of a coffee maker.  You can get a basic automatic drip coffee maker for under $30.  You can get a nice auto drip coffee maker with a thermal carafe for about $50.  A thermal carafe keeps the coffee warm without heating in on a burner- resulting in much better tasting coffee.

If you want coffee fast, consider single serve coffee makers like Keurig, Verisimo, and Senseo.  These machines make a great cup of coffee very fast using small sealed cups of coffee grounds.  These machines are more expensive than auto drip coffee makers.  This article describes single serve coffee brewing systems including Keurig and how much they cost.

Copyright © 2013 by Dr. Penny Pincher.  All Rights Reserved. Coffee Maker Journal

1 comment:

  1. Every one cannot afford costly coffee makers but still when we prepare coffee manually and trust me it tastes much better than machine made coffee.

    Finn Felton

    Kopi Luwak