If you find yourself hitting Starbucks or your local coffee shop every morning, you could save yourself some cash by brewing your own coffee at home. But it’s not as easy as dumping some grounds in a basket—if you’re looking for a better cup of joe, there are some tools that will turn you into an at-home barista in no time.
How To Make The Perfect Cup Of Coffee
If you’re looking for convenience and ease over anything else, buy yourself a Keurig machine and some pods, and you’ll be good to go. But if you want to make a really great cup of coffee, you’ll need to keep a few other tips in mind.
- Find your perfect brewing method. There are so many different ways to make coffee: there are various types of espresso makers, an Aeropress, a French press, a percolator, drip coffee, and pour-over coffee, to name the most popular options. You have to choose what’s right for you depending on how much time the method takes, how it tastes, and what skills it requires. Do a little research, try some out, and decide for yourself.
- Use the right kind of water. The water you use to make coffee matters. Hard water with a lot of minerals not only makes a weaker cup of coffee, but it also causes more of a build-up in your coffee maker, meaning you have to clean it more often. Opt for filtered water over tap water, and never used re-heated water.
- Make sure the water temperature is correct. The temperature of your water is just as, if not more, important than the kind of water you’re using. Water that’s too cold will make the coffee taste more bitter, while water that’s too hot won’t produce great results either. About 205 degrees is your best bet. Most automatic coffee makers will set the temperature for you, but this is worth noting if you plan on brewing with a pour-over for french press.
- Grind your own whole beans. If you want the best tasting cup of coffee, buy whole beans instead of ground beans. Coffee can lose its flavor within 30 minutes of being ground, so grind your own beans immediately before making your coffee. Whole beans that are ground right before taste fresher and much better.
- Store beans properly. Coffee beans should be used within two weeks of opening, and they should be stored correctly to keep out excess oxygen that will make them lose freshness and flavor faster. Keep them in a tightly sealed container in a dark, dry, cool place.
To Upgrade Your Milk: Nestle Nespresso Aeroccino4 Milk Frother
Frothed milk is creamy, delicious, and makes your coffee pleasantly foamy. It’s better than adding regular cold milk into your cup, and you can easily do it at home with a milk frother. One of the best ones out there is the Nestle Nespresso Aeroccino3 Milk Frother. This one can create hot milk foam, hot milk, or cold froth, depending on what you want.
It’s straightforward to use, with one button for everything. It shuts off automatically when it’s finished, heats up quickly, and has a slim design.
Nespresso Aeroccino3 Milk Frother, One Size, Black
Try the Nestle Aeroccino3 Milk Frother to get hot milk foam or a cold froth easily.
A Basic Grinder: Krups Electric Spice and Coffee Grinder
We’ve already established that grinding fresh coffee beans right before making your coffee is the best way to go. When it comes to grinders, you have two options: you can go for a basic grinder, or you can get a burr grinder. A standard grinder will work fine for most people and cost less than a burr grinder, keep in mind that basic grinders don’t create a uniform grind, which may be important for certain types of brew. The Krups Electric Spice and Coffee Grinder is a great option that is highly rated.
This one can produce ground coffee in less than 10 seconds and can grind enough for up to 12 cups of coffee. The sharp blades grind up nicely to release a lot of flavors. And when you’re not using it for coffee beans, it can also grind up nuts, seeds, herbs, and spices.
Krups Electric Spice and Coffee Grinder is an easy-to-use, versatile, and straightforward grinder for beans.
A Burr Grinder: Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder
If you do want to get fancy, though, a burr grinder is the way to go. Burr grinders are more precise and slowly grind beans into even pieces, which will create a better cup for certain types of brews. There are electric burr grinders and handheld ones, and one of the best is the Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder.
There are 40 different grind settings, which allows you to grind the beans exactly how you want. It’s super user-friendly, with easy directions and one button that you use to do everything. The powerful motor makes it very durable, and this one will last a while, so it will be worth the price point.
Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder (Black)
For a professional grinding experience, the Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder, which as 40 different settings.
For Scooping: 1EasyLife Endurance Stainless Steel Coffee Scoop
Measuring out the correct amount of coffee might seem trivial, but the ratio of water to coffee is important when you’re trying to make the best cup possible. While you don’t need a specific coffee scoop, it’s nice to have one, and this 1EasyLife Endurance Stainless Steel Coffee Scoop is great. The solid stainless steel is meant to last without breaking, bending, or rusting, and it can be thrown in the dishwasher when needed.
It holds two tablespoons of coffee (which is the most common unit of measurement for a single cup) with an ergonomic design that makes it easy to hold and measure. And, of course, it can be used for anything.
1Easylife Endurance 18/8 Stainless Steel Coffee Scoop, 2 Tablespoon (30ML) Exact, Pack of One
This 1EasyLife Endurance Coffee Scoop is durable, strong, and makes scooping out the right amount easy.
A Coffee Press: AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker
You don’t have to use an electric machine to make coffee. A coffee press allows you to extract as much flavor as possible, more than a drip coffee machine would get. The AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker is the way to go when you’re looking for a coffee press, as it makes a cup of coffee that’s smooth and full of flavor without being bitter or too acidic.
The AeroPress has a shorter steeping time than a French press, which makes the coffee less bitter. It’s also easier to clean—the paper microfilter eliminates grit and makes the process faster. This can make up to three cups of coffee in about a minute and can even brew espresso style for lattes or cappuccinos. It’s also lightweight and portable, so you can take it on the go if you want, and it comes with basically everything you need.
Aeropress Original Coffee and Espresso Maker, Barista Level Portable Coffee Maker with Chamber, Plunger, and Filters, Quick Coffee and Espresso Maker, Made in USA
When it comes to coffee presses, the AeroPress is the way to go for smooth, delicious coffee.
To Hold Your Beans: Veken Coffee Canister
Remember, the way you store your coffee beans is really important: they need to be kept in a tightly sealed container in a cool, dry, dark place. Start with the Veken Coffee Canister to ensure that the beans are in the best environment. The canisters have a one-way Co2 valve and silicone rubber seal (which is BPA-free) to prevent oxidation. It’s also made of thick stainless steel.
Even better? You can set the date of storage or expiration date on the date tracker located on the lid so that you know precisely when the beans should be used. It comes with a coffee scoop that can be attached to the hook, so you never lose it, and it stores 45 cups worth of coffee beans. It’s hard to get better than those features!
Veken Coffee Canister, Airtight Stainless Steel Kitchen Food Storage Container with Date Tracker and Scoop for Grounds Coffee, Beans, Tea, Flour, Cereal, Sugar, 22OZ, Gray
The Veken Coffee Canister keeps beans super fresh and allows you to keep track of the storage date.
For Measuring Out: Coffee Gator Coffee Scale with Timer
Again, measuring out the right amount of coffee is essential when it comes to making a good cup. Be as accurate as possible with the Coffee Gator Coffee Scale. This easy-to-use scale allows you to weigh out the coffee beans and measure water volume. There are a non-slip rubber mat and feet that keep the scale firmly in place, so it doesn’t move.
Everything is visible on a bright digital screen. And while this is great for making coffee, it’s a scale that can be used for anything, making it very versatile.
Coffee Gator Coffee Scale – Digital, Multifunctional, Weighing Kitchen Scale w/ Timer & ?Large LCD for Food, Espresso and Drink
The Coffee Gator Coffee Scale measures out exactly what you need and is very versatile.
To Keep It Hot: Ember Temperature Smart Control Mug 2
One of the worst things is when you make a delicious, hot cup of coffee, then get sidetracked and return to find it cold. Using the Ember Temperature Smart Control Mug 2 is one way to avoid that. This stylish and chic mug keeps your drink hot for up to 1.5 hours—and if you use it on the coaster, it can stay hot all day.
You can even download an app with this to set the temperature and get notifications on your phone, so it couldn’t be easier to use. It also automatically goes into sleep mode after a specific amount of time.
Ember Temperature Control Smart Mug 2, 10 oz, Black, 1.5-hr Battery Life - App Controlled Heated Coffee Mug - Improved Design
The Ember Temperature Control Mug keeps your coffee hot for over an hour.
To Stay Neat: Mind Reader Coffee Condiment and Accessories Caddy Organizer
If you’re making coffee at home, you may use sugar, specific stirring spoons, and other small accessories. You can keep all of that neat and organized with the Mind Reader Coffee Condiment and Accessories Caddy Organizer. It has containers and little drawers to hold sugar, to-go coffee cups and lids, napkins, stirrers, and whatever other small items you’re looking to store. It’s great for at home or in the office and looks nice too.
Mind Reader Anchor Collection 11-Compartment Coffee Cup and Condiment Organizer with 2 Drawers, 1 Pack, Black
The Mind Reader Coffee Condiment and Accessories Caddy is great for organizing your small coffee add-ons.