Coffee Brewing Ratios: The Simplified Guide

So, you’ve got your coffee beans and you’re ready to brew the perfect cup. But how much coffee should you actually use for that ideal cup? Let’s break it down so you can get the best flavor every time, without a ton of complicated math.

Forget about using scoops or tablespoons. These methods can be really imprecise because they measure volume, not weight, leading to big discrepancies in your coffee’s strength. A dark roast can weigh differently than a light roast, even if you use the same scoop. One day your coffee might be great, the next it could be weak—all because volume measurements fluctuate. The solution? Use grams per liter. It’s simple math and provides consistency every time.

When it comes to ratios like 1:14 or 1:15, they can be super confusing, especially first thing in the morning. For a straightforward approach, grams per liter is much easier to manage. For example, if you’re brewing half a liter of coffee, and you’re using a 60 grams per liter ratio, you just need 30 grams of coffee. Simple, right?

Now, how much coffee should you actually use per liter of water? This part is all about personal preference. A good starting point is 60 grams per liter, but whether you prefer 55 grams or 75 grams depends on how strong you like your coffee. But remember, don’t change the ratio if you’re not happy with the taste. Adjust your brewing method first—grind finer, steep longer, or agitate more—before changing the amount of coffee you use.

Different brewing methods might also call for different ratios. Broadly, you have two types: percolation and infusion. In percolation methods like pour-overs, water passes through the coffee grounds, and some water gets absorbed by the grounds. In infusion methods like French press or AeroPress, all the water mixes with all the grounds. For pour-overs, stick with 60 grams per liter. For infusions, going up to 75 grams per liter is a good idea because the water fully interacts with the coffee, making a stronger brew.

Consistency is key to finding what you like. Using a scale to measure both your coffee and water can help you achieve consistent results every time. Once you’re happy with the taste, you can start tweaking the ratio to see what works best for you.

Finding the perfect coffee-to-water ratio is more of an art than a science and involves some trial and error. Start with 60 grams per liter as a baseline for pour-overs and 75 grams per liter for infusions. Adjust based on your taste and remember to change your brewing method first if the taste isn’t right before altering the ratio. Happy brewing!