Are you brewing weak-tasting coffee in your Aeropress?
It’s enough reason to question whether the hype behind this popular device is worth it..
We’re here to tell you it is, but you need to use it correctly.
The Aeropress itself is not the reason behind a weak cup of coffee, but some common mistakes when using it are often to blame. Aspects like the brew ratio, the grind size, brew time, the filter used, and not stirring the grounds tend to produce a less-than-desired cup of coffee. You can also try brewing with the Inverted Method which yeilds stronger coffee.
In this post, we’ll explain how each of the factors might actually put a dampener to your morning pick-me-up and how to tailor each brew so you’re satisfied, cup after cup.
Why Listen To Us? Well, because we KNOW coffee! In fact, we make our own coffee, coffee machine cleaners, and reusable capsules which we've sold to over 41 countries. Our team ouf experts include Tristan (an engineer), Claire (a food writer) and Richy (a barista). So, whether you're looking for a recipe or repair guide, we've got you covered 💚
Table of Contents
Why Is My Aeropress Coffee Weak? (7 Reasons And How To Fix It)
Coffee type, grind size, water temperature, brew time, brew ratio, and the filter used are among the possible reasons why your coffee lacks body and flavor.
- Using old expired coffee
- Using the wrong grind size
- Your brewing water is too cold
- Wrong water-to-coffee ratio
- Brewing too quickly
- Using the wrong filter
- You need to stir your brew
- Bonus: Try brewing in inverted mode
Here’s an explanation of each of these factors.
1. Using Old Expired Coffee
Pre-ground beans are often ground can sit in their bags for months to years before being used. Ground beans have a much shorter shelf life than whole beans as they have a bigger surface area to loose their flavor from
Oxygen is the enemy, and If the bag has been opened and oxygen has been allowed it, then it will only stay good for 1 or 2 months before the flavors start deteriorating and your coffee will end up tasting weak.
Solution: Use freshly ground beans
To have better control of your grind size, purchase whole beans. Not only will you be able to achieve the medium-fine grind, but freshly ground beans have a much more refreshing flavor and are full of compounds that’ll add the desired strength to your brew
2. Using The Wrong Grind Size
Different grind levels affect the way the water interacts with the coffee beans. If your grounds are too coarse, it doesn’t give enough room for the water to interact with every one of the granules of the brew. A good starting point will be to use medium-fine grounds.
Espresso grind and plunger are the most common grind sizes sold in the supermarket but neither are optimal for an Aeropress.
Buying whole coffee beans and a grinder puts you in control of how fine or coarse you want your grounds.
Solution: Grind Till Medium-Fine
The finer your grounds are, the greater the surface area. This means the water has enough room to interact with every ground which essentially extracts and pulls out all the coffee that yields a strong cup of coffee.
3. Your Brewing Water Is Too Cold
Coffee compounds dissolve better in hot water. The higher the temperature, the more flavors, aromas, and potency you’ll get from a cup of coffee. If you’re using warm or cool water, you’ll have to steep your beans longer to extract all those flavors and desired strength.
Solution: Increase the water temperature
It’s best to use the highest temperature -about 91-95°C (195-203℉), of boiled water to add to your coffee beans. Investing in a hydrometer or digital kettle in this case will make things easier for you. In this way, you’re able to control the water temperature for a consistently strong brew.
4. Wrong Water-To-Coffee Ratio
While there is no correct coffee-water ratio, the more water you use, the weaker your coffee. A standard scoop that comes with your Aeropress carries about 15g of coffee. So, add at least 15-20g of grounds for every 200 ml of water to get a satisfactory brew.
If using less coffee than this, you’re going to find your brew weak and watery
Solution: Make a coffee concentrate
Making a concentrate means you’ll have to add a small amount of water (about half the required amount) to your grounds to create an intense drink. Making a concentrate allows for better extraction of flavors and aromas. Once you’ve plunged the liquid into your cup, you can dilute it as desired.
Its always easier to add more water than take it out!
5. Brewing Too Quikly
Brewing too quickly often results in a weaker cup of coffee. The Aeropress instruction leaflet says to wait for 30 seconds before plunging your device.
Steeping longer aids in extracting all the flavors you love, so if you aren’t waiting the full 30, then this may be the culprit
Solution: Brew for at least a minute
30 seconds is the recommended time to brew your coffee. But brewing longer results in greater coffee extraction. Increase your brew time to a minute or even two, so your Aeropress can release an intense cup of coffee.
6. Using The Wrong Filter
As coffee enthusiasts, we’re fans of gadgets that make our coffee-making experience easier and more fun! But not all these are designed to make a satisfying cup of coffee – including some of the filters on the market.
If you’re using anything but paper filters, these may be hindering the amount of flavor and aromas deposited in your cup. This is also because most of the flavor compounds are in solid form, and since you don’t drink any of the sediments, that means the filters prevent any flavors from passing through.
Paper filters are often preferred because they let the oils and flavors pass through without any of the sediments.
Soltution: Use Aerospress’ Paper filters
Paper filters release a cleaner, stronger drink. And, you don’t have to worry about any sediments filtering through and spoiling your entire cup of coffee.
7. You Need To Stir Your Brew
As your coffee blooms, some of the grounds rise to the top and don’t get dampened by the water. Clumping can also occur where balls of dry coffee form which need to be broken up
But, if you stir (agitate) your grounds after adding the water, you ensure all the grounds are wet and allow for even extraction, which potentially increases the strength of your coffee.
Solution: Mix It Up
Agitating your brew helps to pull out most of the coffee compounds responsible for the flavor and aroma. As soon as you’ve poured water over your beans, give the mixture a good 15-second stir and cover it with the lid.
Bonus Tip: Brew In Inverted Mode!
Though not necessary, the inverted method gives you control over how long your grounds interact with the water. Often, when you use the upright method, some of your coffee will start dripping into your cup before the brewing time has lapsed, which often leads to a weaker cup of coffee.
Summary: How To Make Aeropress Coffee Stronger?
Drinking a weak cup of coffee from your Aeropress can be frustrating. There are several reasons why your brew turned out this way. Maybe it’s the type of coffee you used, how you ground your beans, the time it took to brew your coffee, or maybe you skipped the stirring part.
Before you dump your Aeropress at the back of your cupboard to collect dust. Try these 8 tricks to improve your brew for a stronger Aeropress coffee.
- Use freshly ground beans
- Grind till medium-fine
- Use paper filters
- Increase the water temperature
- Make a coffee concentrate
- Brew longer
- Stir your brew
- Brew in inverted mode
NOTE: Strength is a matter of preference. What we consider potent, might not be strong for you. Feel free to use different methods until you find one that you’re fully satisfied with.
Luckily, a small tweak in your brewing technique is all you need for a full-bodied cup of coffee. You can consider extending your brew time, trying brewing in inverted mode, adding more grounds to your brew, or using paper filters. Once you’ve made adjustments, you’ll happily brew a strong Aeropress coffee regularly.