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Have you ever tried to make pour over coffee but read about the different types of filters and found the choice to be rather intimidating? Today, we’re going to break down the best pour over coffee filters and see what they’re made from, how to choose one, and how to make the best pour over coffee ever.
Top 3 Picks
These are my top choices based on their overall quality, affordability, and versatility.
- Best overall: Hario 02 100-Count Coffee Natural Paper Filters
- Best value: KICOCOFA Cone Coffee Filters
- Best reusable: Willow & Everett Pour Over Coffee Dripper
What Is Pour Over Coffee?
Unlike some other methods, pour-over coffee constantly replenishes the surroundings of the coffee grounds with fresh water. This results in a more rapid and efficient brew.
The freshwater has a tendency to extract more material from the ground’s surface layers. It’s similar to deep-frying cubed potatoes in a very hot pan. While a hotter pan can cook your potatoes faster, there is a risk of overcooking them, particularly on the outsides.
Pouring a single stream of water, rather than multiple smaller streams from the showerhead of a coffee maker, results in a slightly warmer brewing environment, simply by minimizing the surface temperature loss caused by the narrow water streams. The temperature and the quality of the water have an effect on the overall reaction rate of our small coffee chemistry set.
How to Make Pour Over Coffee
If you want to make the perfect pour over coffee, you need to take into account the following ingredients, tools, and techniques.
The consistency and uniformity of the grind is the most critical variable in consistently producing high-quality coffee. Fortunately, it’s also one of the most straightforward coffee issues to resolve with the proper equipment.
Once you have a good burr grinder, experimenting with what works for you will be easy, but a general rule to remember is that the finer the grind, the shorter the contact time required for brewing (and vice-versa).
While you do not require a lot of accessories to brew good coffee, certain components are required for consistent quality. Brewers looking to make quality pour over coffee need a gram scale, a slow-pouring kettle, and a burr grinder.
Additionally, you might want to consider using a thermometer to monitor temperature stability if you choose a kettle without an integrated temperature display.
The critical nature of brewing with high-quality water cannot be stressed. It will help keep your equipment in good condition and will allow your coffee to shine to its greatest potential. At home, you won’t need in-line filtration, but brewing your own high-quality water is becoming increasingly simple.
According to the SCA, the recommended temperature range for brewing coffee is between 195°F and 205°F when water comes into contact with ground coffee. Other specialists recommend using water that is just off the boil (212°F).
What we can tell with certainty is that stability is critical regardless of the brew temperature you choose, and that thoroughly preheating your brewer to ensure that you do not lose too much heat fast will be critical for your brewing consistency.
Boil at least 20 oz of water.
Coffee should be ground to a coarseness like sea salt. You should use around 30 grams of coffee for blends. To appreciate the delicate flavor of a lightly roasted single-origin coffee, you want to use less coffee, so that’s about 22 grams per 350 grams of water.
Insert a filter in the dripper. Wet the filter using hot water and throw it away before you actually start brewing the coffee.
Place the grounds in the filter and tap them to level the surface. Put the brewer on a cup or carafe. Place everything on top of a digital scale and set it to zero.
This coffee preparation will require a total of four pours. This is the first and most magical stage, as it is during this stage that you will witness the coffee “bloom.” When hot water first contacts the grounds, carbon dioxide is released, causing a blooming effect—the grounds will collectively rise.
Begin a timer. Begin carefully pouring water over the grounds, starting at the rim and working your way in a spiral pattern into the center of the grounds.
When the scale reaches 60 grams, stop pouring. Assure that all of the grounds are wet, even if additional water is required. Pouring should take approximately 15 seconds. Allow a further 30 seconds for the coffee to drip before proceeding to the second pour.
Pour in a continuous spiral toward the outer perimeter of the grounds, then back into the center. Pour all the way out to the edge of the filter, over the ripples.
This helps prevent grounds from becoming caught within and being extracted separately from the remainder of the extraction. Add approximately 90 grams to make a total of 150 grams.
The objective of this pour is to completely submerge all of the grounds. This generates gentle turbulence that “stirs” the coffee, allowing the water to remove the grinds more evenly. Allow this to sit for around 45 to 60 seconds.
When the coffee and water mixture from the second pour reaches the filter’s bottom, add an extra 100 grams of water. Pour it using the same pattern as before. You should have a total of 250 grams now.
When the coffee and water mixture from the third pour reaches the filter’s bottom, you can add the final 100 grams of water.
What to Look for in Pour Over Coffee Filters
Your coffee machine is probably one of the approximately 95% that use #4 coffee filters. Therefore, if you’re using a machine with a six-cup brewing capacity, you’ll almost certainly need to use #2 coffee filters.
You can find bleached and unbleached coffee filters, and the flavor of coffee prepared with each is very similar. The key point of contention amongst buyer perspectives is the manner in which they are made.
Brown is the natural color of unprocessed paper. To get the white hue of white coffee filters, they have been treated. Two approaches are used to whiten the filters.
The first is bleaching with chlorine. This procedure employs a trace quantity of chlorine to bleach the wood pulp. Chlorine bleaching is time consuming and has a detrimental effect on the environment, creating hazardous wastewater and polluting the air.
The second approach, oxygen bleaching, is less expensive to manufacture and has less negative environmental consequences. Consumers can examine the package to determine the manufacturing process used in white coffee filters. Filters designated “TCF” have not been bleached with chlorine.
Unprocessed paper filters retain their original brown hue and have not been bleached. Unbleached filters are considered to be healthier, with fewer chemicals, and have a lower impact on the environment. Having said that, some individuals claim that using unbleached coffee filters imparts a tiny paper flavor to their brewed coffee.
Filtration method has an effect on the final flavor of brewed coffee. Filters composed of absorbent fibers, such as cloth or paper, will absorb more coffee oils and so remove some of the flavor.
Do you prefer a coffee that is more “Turkish in style” – one that allows for some sediment to pass through the filter? Filters with a loose weave, such as cloth, will allow for greater passage of ground coffee.
If you prefer a powerful, robust cup of coffee that allows you to taste the bean’s flavors and contains the maximum amount of caffeine and java, you’ll appreciate the results obtained with a metal “gold tone” or plastic filter.
Disposable vs. Reusable Pour Over Coffee Filters
Paper filters are disposable, and you have to make sure that you throw them away after each use. Reusable coffee filters are made from materials such as metal or cloth, and they can be cleaned and used time and time again. So, which of these is better for your pour over coffee?
Taste of coffee
Reusable metal filters are just not fine enough to capture everything that is put into them, allowing critical materials such as micro-fines and oil to pass through the filter and sip right into your coffee cup.
Additionally, coffee has been suspected of boosting cholesterol levels. It is supposed to specifically increase LDL, “the bad sort of cholesterol,” according to Merritt McKinney of NBC News.
The oils that pass-through metal filters, on the other hand, are genuinely to blame. These oils are packed with flavor and can drastically modify the taste of the cup, but they also oxidize quickly, which means the taste can change significantly during the drinking process.
Micro-fines are coffee granules that are small enough to pass through the filter’s holes imparting a darker, more cloudy appearance to the cup. Additionally, they impart a more robust and intense flavor to the cup, similar to coffee prepared in a French press, and settle to the bottom of the cup, leaving a touch of sediment.
Paper filters are much finer, which means they collect micro-fine particles and typically capture the majority of oils. As a result, the cup is significantly brighter in flavor and appearance. Coffee brewed with a paper filter is frequently regarded as sweeter and fruitier, and it is generally more translucent than coffee brewed with a metal filter.
A reusable metal filter, which costs between $5 and $60, can last up to seven years or longer. If a high-end filter lasts seven years, the annual cost is $8.57. However, most metal filters may pay for themselves within a year, balancing the cost of paper filters and lowering your carbon footprint.
Paper filters often cost between $0.01 and $0.10 each. Because paper filters are single-use and assume daily brewing of one cup of coffee, they can cost between $18.25 and $36.50 per year. These figures easily double if you brew multiple times per day.
Ease of cleaning
Metal filters are notoriously difficult to clean. To begin, remove the filter from the brewer and discard the grounds. Before washing, you want to remove as many grounds as possible from the filter, as you do not want to wash coffee grounds into the drain. Over time, coffee can build and plug drains.
A select handful actually rinse and reuse their paper filters numerous times before discarding them. However, in the majority of cases, paper filters are single-use and completely disposable. To clean up after brewing, simply remove the filter out of the brewer and discard it along with the grounds.
What Filters to Use for Pour Over Coffee?
A filter prevents your coffee from disintegrating into sludge. Because most coffee filters are designed for specific brewing equipment, you need to choose the right one. If you’re not in the habit of composting paper, there are numerous reusable metal and cloth coffee filters available. However, if you’re all about the best pour over imaginable, nothing beats paper.
Can You Use Regular Coffee Filter for Pour Over?
Yes, but you need to make sure that your particular brewing equipment supports the size of the filters you want to use. Consider Chemex. A Chemex is constructed in such a way that it can accommodate a Chemex filter. Other firms, however, have manufactured coffee filters that fit in a Chemex to fill the void left by the pricey Chemex filters.
Is Filter Coffee the Same as Pour Over?
Pour over coffee is made by pouring hot water through coffee grounds contained in a filter. Water is drained through the coffee and into a mug or carafe via a filter. Pour over coffee is also referred to as drip or filter coffee. However, both words encompass batch brewers as well.
What distinguishes pour over from other methods is that the water is poured over the coffee by hand. As a result, you may hear it referred to as manual or hand brewing.
The Best Pour Over Coffee Filters
Let’s take a look at the best choices based on their quality, price, and overall versatility.
Made from reusable stainless steel, this is a coffee filter that ensures you won’t have to worry about stocking on disposable filters anymore. Aside from the fact that it can be used time and time again, it’s also very easy to clean and takes about 60 seconds to wash it.
The manufacturer claims that this particular filter can fit over most pour over carafes, being compatible with brewers that can make six, eight, or 10 cups. The filter is made with a laser-cut honeycomb pattern, quality mesh, and a non-slip silicone ring.
- Cost-efficient due to reusability
- Fits most pour overs
- Very easy to clean
- Tends to get clogged
Hario pour over brewers are amongst the most popular ones on the market, and if you’re looking for filters for them at a convenient price, we suggest this set of two natural paper filter packs.
These cone-shaped paper filters are designed for use with Hario’s V60 size 02 pour-over brewers. This package contains 100 single-use natural size 02 paper filters. These paper filters result in a cup that is clean, delicious, and sediment-free.
- Retains coffee flavor
- Convenient set of 200 filters
- Don’t leak coffee grounds
- Some filters break at the seam
Taking pride in delivering filters that are 20 to 30 percent thicker than those made by competitors, these Chemex filters are certainly something worth talking about. They are compatible with almost every Chemex coffee maker, excluding the CM-1, CM-1C, and CM-1GH.
A pack contains 100 pieces, and each filter is designed with fibers that help keep coffee grounds on the surface, while allowing your coffee to maintain its flavor, eliminating bitterness and oils.
- Thicker than the competition
- Compatible with most Chemex coffee makers
- Retains coffee flavor
- Complaints about packaging
These filters are made of natural raw wood pulp, are environmentally friendly, and include no bleaching agent, thus preserving the original flavor of coffee. Due to the small and consistent thickness of the disposable paper coffee filter, there is no need to worry about damage or leaking while brewing.
The filters are produced using an amazing bonding technology that requires no glue, a thicker treatment, and a robust support. These filters have no bleaching agents and no toxic chemicals to worry about.
- Available in packs of 300 filters
- No toxic chemicals
- Smaller than expected
These filters are constructed from natural wood pulp that is free of fluorescence and bleach, this coffee is both eco-friendly and healthful to drink. The natural brown count separation and removal of crushed bitter sediments and grounds is quite successful. The fine texture allows for better filtration, which enhances the flavor of your coffee.
- Natural wood pulp construction
- Unbleached paper filter
- Fine filtration system
- Pretty small in size
This titanium-coated stainless-steel dripper has been meticulously manufactured to accommodate the majority of branded coffee carafes. This replaceable BPA-FREE silicone grip pairs beautifully with your wooden or glass Chemex and securely grabs the glass rim.
The dual-filter technology used here is designed to prevent coffee grounds from seeping through the filter, offering a rich flavor with no ground ending up in your coffee cup.
- Dual-filter technology
- Compatible with multiple pour overs
- Eco-friendly solution
- Not dishwasher-safe
Answer: The choice of filters is entirely up to you, but make sure you understand the benefits and limitations of each type so that you can understand how it can influence the taste of your coffee.
Answer: Yes, provided that the size of the filter is a good match for the brewing apparatus in question.
Answer: Pour over is another name used for filter coffee, which is sometimes referred to as “drip coffee”.
The Bottom Line
The Hario coffee filters have proven time and time again that they are of superior quality, being made from quality materials and pretty resistant and thick compared to the competition. I hope that helps you narrow down your choices so you can choose the right one for you! If you want more tips on coffee and kitchen must-haves, check out our guide to the best stainless-steel coffee filters.