Food & Drink

This Is the Right Way to Insert a Coffee Filter—But No One Does It

Using a coffeemaker isn’t exactly rocket science. You measure out your grounds, put them in the filter, add some water, and let the machine work its magic. There’s just one step that trips up even the biggest coffee addicts: sticking in that oddly shaped filter.

As popular as paper coffee filters are, their shape seems a bit awkward for the machine. Once you unfold the conical filter and put it in the filter box, it wants to close in on itself, so you keep awkwardly pulling at it to make it sit correctly. But it turns out there’s an easier way to make your cup of Joe—and it all comes down to following directions.

Just revealed that coffee filter boxes have directions that most home baristas ignore. You know those crimped edges on the bottom and one side of a filter? They’re not just seams keeping the filter together; they’re actually designed to keep your coffee filter upright.

This easy method to a perfect cup of coffee works well, both at home or when traveling. Utilizing the principles of the steeped coffee method popularized with the creation of the French press, it creates a richer and more full-bodied brew because the coffee grinds remain in contact with the hot water longer—especially when compared to automatic drip and single serve machines.

Normally, you probably just open up the flaps of the filter, dump in your coffee grounds, and pop the filter in place—but the pesky filter doesn’t quite stay there. Next time, before you even think about how many grounds to add (and this secret, common ingredient that makes coffee taste smoother), fold the filter on both of those seams. That often-missed step will flatten the bottom and strengthen the side, so it will stay in place while your coffee is made. For once, your filter won’t break while your coffee is brewing, and the grinds won’t make a mess of your machine.

Instead of utilizing this French press method, you can just as easily put your coffee grinds into a paper towel, then steep the paper towel in hot water if you wish. The flavor won’t be as strong or as rich, but it will save you steps if you’re in a hurry.

Congrats! You’re well on your way to getting a great morning pick-me-up and the easiest cleanup ever. But that’s not the only way you can step up your coffee game. Find out the truth behind these coffee myths you’ve been believing this whole time.

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