You’ve never been a morning person. Pulling yourself out of bed to head to your 9-5 is the most painful thing you’ve ever done. You’re not sure if you would be able to manage it if you didn’t have coffee.

Nothing gets rid of your brain fog and gets you going quite like a good cup of joe. You usually end up going to your favorite coffee shop each morning. It costs a lot of money but you can’t make it the same way at home.

What if we told you how to make perfect coffee that tastes better than what you pay 5 dollars a cup for? Check out this guide to become your new favorite barista.

1. Whole Bean Coffee is Best Coffee

When you’re picking out coffee, always go with whole beans. You’ll need to buy a grinder but the taste is worth it. You see, coffee gets its delicious taste from certain compounds.

Once the coffee is roasted, these compounds begin to escape. This process goes a lot faster once the beans have been ground up. So, fresh beans are the way to go.

Speaking of fresh, you’ve got to watch where you buy your beans. The bags sitting on the shelf at your local grocery store have probably been there for a month or more. Head down to your local coffee shop and ask them for a bag of beans instead.

2. Use a Scale

The basic rule of thumb is to use two tablespoons of coffee for every 6oz of water that you pour into your coffee pot. This method doesn’t always work though. Coffee blends have varying densities.

Two tablespoons of one brand won’t equal up to the same amount as two tablespoons of another. So, our advice is to invest in a scale.

Measure your coffee out in weight instead of volume. This way, you always know how much is going into your cup.

3. Store Your Beans the Right Way

As soon as you crack open your bag of coffee beans, they’ll start to go stale. That is unless you store them the right way. They need to be kept in an air-tight canister.

Keep this canister in a dry area that is away from heat and sunlight. Everyone likes cold brew coffee but don’t take that literally. If you store your beans in the freezer, the moisture will cause them to get stale faster.

4. How and When to Grind

Thirty minutes after you grind your coffee, it will start to lose its flavor. So, you want to use your coffee as soon as you grind it. Timing isn’t the only thing to keep in mind.

The way you grind the coffee is equally as important. You’ve got to watch your ground size and consistency. If the grounds are too coarse, the cup of coffee will be kind of weak.

If the grounds are too thin, you’ll have to worry about it being too bitter. You want to go with a nice medium ground. That’s the ticket to the perfect coffee.

5. Choosing Your Brewing Method

Your brewing method matters about as much as your grounds do. There are three main options that you can try out: pour-over, French press, and drip.

Pour-Over

Put a kettle of water on the stove to boil. While it’s doing that, place a filter in the glass brewer and pour water over it. This will stop any paper residue from getting in your coffee and it will warm up the brewer.

Dump the water down the sink and put your coffee in the filter. Take the boiling water off the stove and gently pour it over the grounds in the filter. Make sure you start in the middle and work your way to the edges.

French Press

Get out that kettle again and boil water on the stove. Grind your coffee beans so that they’re about the size of breadcrumbs while you wait on the water.

Pour your grounds into the French press. By the time you do this, the water should be hot enough for you to pour it in. Stir the grounds into the water and use the press to separate them and expel your brew into the cup.

Drip

Drip coffee is most likely the brewing method that you’re used to. You grind the beans, place your filter in the basket, put the grounds in the filter, and pour your water into the back of the machine.

Turn on the machine and let it do the brewing for you. Grab your cup when it’s done and add any cream and sugar that you want.

6. Keep Your Coffee Maker Clean

Cleaning the coffee machine is a must if you’re using the drip preparation method. If you neglect cleaning, your coffee will have a burned taste.

This taste comes from the oil that coffee produces when brewed. The more often you brew coffee, the more oil builds up inside the machine. Clean it at least once a day with a coffee grinder brush.

7. Steam the Milk

If you really want to bring the coffee shop into your kitchen, you’ll invest in a milk frother. It makes it easy to have lattes and cappuccinos every morning.

You can steam milk in the microwave if you don’t want to buy more coffee equipment. It might not turn out quite as authentic as you want though.

8. Use Quality Water

Don’t use tap water to brew your coffee! It’s full of chlorine and other chemicals that will ruin the taste. Some minerals in water are okay, however.

That’s why using distilled and soft water is just as bad as getting it out of the tap. Attach a water filter to your sink or at least get a filter pitcher.

9. Say No to Cheap Coffee Filters

The dollar filters will work for brewing coffee in a pinch but they aren’t the best thing to use. They’re full of bleach and other chemicals that will wind up in your coffee cup.

These cheap coffee filters can also let the grounds slip through. Granted, even some of the expensive filters can do that but to a much lesser degree.

10. Don’t Use Too Much Heat

You do need heat to make a proper cup of coffee but you should avoid using too much heat. Using water that’s too hot will remove some of the compounds that make coffee taste so good.

200-degrees Fahrenheit is a nice sweet spot. A good drip machine will regulate this temperature for you but if you’re using one of the other coffee brewing methods, you’ll have to do it on your own.

You should also avoid reheating your coffee if you let it get cold on your desk. Trust us when we say, it won’t taste the same once it comes out of the microwave. The heat will make it bitter and gross.

11. Spice Things Up

Add an extra spin on your coffee by using the ingredients in your spice cabinet. Cardamom, ginger, and orange peels make a great combo. Cinnamon and nutmeg are a classic and will make every cup taste like Christmas.

The only limit to what you try is the spices you have on hand. Don’t be afraid to experiment a little.

12. Only Grind What You Need

When you’re grinding your coffee beans, only prepare what you need. Again, as soon as the beans are ground, they’ll start to lose their flavor and go stale.

You only want to grind them when you’re about to make a pot of coffee. Grinding all your beans at once will save you time but you’ll be sacrificing flavor.

13. Burr Grinder

We can’t stress this enough. Invest in the right coffee grinder. If you can afford it, a burr grinder is perfect for coffee brewing beginners and experts.

You want all your coffee grounds to brew at the same rate. If you have a bunch of grounds of varying sizes, it will affect the flavor of the final product. A burr grinder makes it easy to get a consistent size so you can brew a perfect cup every time.

How to Make Perfect Coffee to Wake You Up in the Morning

Going to a coffee shop to get your java fix each morning can get expensive. You’ll save a bunch of money and get a better cup by learning how to make perfect coffee right in the comfort of your home.

Making a good cup of joe all depends on the quality of the beans you’re using and your equipment. If you invest in the best, that’s what you’ll pour out.

Nothing pairs well with coffee quite like a good breakfast. Check out the recipe section of our blog daily for all the tastiest meal ideas.

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