AeroPress Review: What Makes It A Good Coffee And Espresso Maker?
AeroPress is something of an icon among coffee lovers. But if you’re new to coffee brewing or you’ve never strayed from your drip coffee machine, you might be wondering what all the fuss is about.
Long story short, the AeroPress is an innovative gravity and pressure-powered coffee press that was invented in 2005 by Alan Adler. It’s a popular manual brewing method because it makes great coffee, is easy to use, and is affordable. It’s also incredibly portable, making it popular with travelers and campers.
Now that we’ve cleared that up, read this AeroPress coffee maker review to learn about its features and decide if it’s the right option for you.
SUMMARY: The Aerobie AeroPress
- Light and portable, perfect for travelers
- Brews a strong cup of coffee, similar to an Americano
- Only takes a minute to brew a cup of coffee
The portable and lightweight AeroPress brews a sweet, full-bodied cup wherever you are: at home, camping or on a road trip.– Stumptown Coffee Roasters
The AeroPress Coffee Maker Full Review
The AeroPress is one of the most popular coffee brewing methods, beloved by experts and beginners alike. Its low price and easy-to-use design make it an approachable choice for coffee newbies. While its delicious coffee and room for experimentation appeal to coffee pros. There is even an AeroPress World Championship!
For such a simple design, there is a lot to talk about when it comes to the AeroPress, from aesthetics to brewing to portability. So let’s get started.
Aesthetic Appeal – 3.5/5
The Aerobie AeroPress doesn’t have the elegance of manual pour over brewers like the Kalita Wave or the Chemex, nor is it as iconic as the immortal French press, but that’s not its goal. Its design is all about being practical, light, and portable.
The AeroPress is not meant to be shown off on your countertop but rather taken out of the cupboard for a quick coffee or shoved in a backpack before venturing out. It’s not unattractive, but it is a wonderful example of function over form.
Ease Of Use – 5/5
It doesn’t matter if you’re an experienced barista or new to coffee brewing, you and the AeroPress will get on just fine. Unlike most manual coffee makers or pour over drippers, you won’t encounter a learning curve to make coffee with an AeroPress. You just need to add the ground coffee, pour in hot water (we recommend a water temperature between 175 °F and 205 °F), stir it, place the paper filter into the filter cup, push down the plunger, and enjoy your AeroPress brew!
You get 1 to 4 cups of delicious, high-quality coffee in only a minute, a much shorter brew time than the French press or most other brewers.
The best part is the easy clean-up, usually the most dreaded time when it comes to brewing coffee. After an AeroPress brew, you won’t get any annoying leftover coffee grounds and residue in its body thanks to the filter. So you just have to remove the filter, along with the ground coffee, and rinse the plunger. That’s it.
It also comes with a stirrer and a handy scoop to measure your coffee grounds. Typically, we recommend brewing coffee by weight, but if you’re out camping with your AeroPress, the scoop is handy. A level scoop holds about 11.5 g of ground coffee, while a heaping scoop can contain 14 g.
What grind size is best for Aeropress?
Medium-fine is the best grind for AeroPress. If the plunger goes down too easily, it means that your grind is too coarse; on the contrary, if you struggle to push it down, your coffee bean grounds are too fine. Ideally, they should look like table salt.
Custom Brewing Features – 4.5/5
Despite its simple design, the AeroPress gives you a lot of room to flex your barista creativity. That’s why the AeroPress World Championships is such an exciting event. By adjusting the grind size, water temperature, and extraction time, you have full control over your brew. You can also play with the filter by doubling up or opting for a metal mesh filter. Or you can also try adding an Aeropress accessory or attachment like the Fellow Prismo to improve your brew.
We have a whole article of great AeroPress tips and tricks you can try! To impress your friends, you can brew coffee with the AeroPress inverted method. Or check out this video to see Steven from Home Grounds use it as a no-bypass brewer:
The AeroPress is known for brewing small but strong shots of coffee, which makes a great jumping-off point for a variety of drinks. The most common option is to dilute it with hot water for a drink similar to an Americano, or you can add steamed or frothed milk to create cafe-style drinks. You can use AeroPress coffee makers for cold brews, and it’s even possible to make almost espresso with it. After all, the design and idea behind the AeroPress were inspired by espresso machines (1).
Which coffee is best for Aeropress?
As just discussed, the AeroPress is a very versatile brewer. Not only can it make many styles of coffee, but you can brew a delicious cup using any high-quality coffee beans, regardless of roast level or flavor profile.
We’d recommend darker roasts if you’re using your AeroPress to prepare espresso-style drinks, whereas a light or medium roast is often preferable for regular coffee or cold brew. But it comes down to your taste. For suggestions, check out our article on the best coffee for AeroPress.
Can the Aeropress make espresso?
The AeroPress cannot make true espresso. By definition, espresso is brewed faster and under higher pressure than can be achieved by an AeroPress. However, because the AeroPress is a pressure-based system, it can brew a strong coffee that is closer to espresso than a typical drip coffee or French press brew. It most closely resembles coffee from a Moka pot. Here’s where we compared the Aeropress vs the moka pot.
Portability – 5/5
We can’t praise the AeroPress enough when it comes to portability. It is one of the best coffee makers for travelers and as portable as a coffee press can get. Like some of the favorites in this list, it’s light, small, and compact. And, as it’s made of BPA-free plastic, it’s much harder to break or damage than a French press or a Chemex. It obviously doesn’t require electricity, making it an ultimate favorite for camping or road trips (2). You can even fit a small hand grinder inside it for the ultimate coffee-on-the-go set up.
The AeroPress is the undisputed champion of travel coffee brewers.
Who says that you should drop your coffee rituals when globetrotting? Certainly not the AeroPress.
Value For Money – 4.5/5
The AeroPress is very good value for money and an incredible budget coffee maker. It’s a bit more expensive than the cheapest French press models or the Hario V60, but it’s in the same price range as pour over coffee makers like the Kalita Wave. And it’s much more affordable than a Chemex or any drip coffee machine. Plus, the Aeropress is made in the US and not in China, so you can expect it to be durable and reliable.
You do have to buy paper filters, but they are very cheap, and you can even reuse each one a time or two to stretch your budget. Or you can invest in a reusable metal filter if you prefer, which produces less waste and yields a fuller-bodied cup (3). Here’s the difference between paper Aeropress filters and metal ones.
Things We Liked
- Easy to use and clean up
- Allows a lot of control over your brew
- Compact, lightweight, and durable
- Affordable price
Things we didn’t like
- Can only brew small volumes of coffee
- Not aesthetically pleasing
Do NOT Buy the AeroPress If…
- You prefer larger quantities of robust coffee – Both the AeroPress and the French press make delicious coffee. But if you want more than 8 ounces of strong coffee at a time, we recommend the good old French press, which you can get in different sizes to suit your caffeinated needs. If you’re still not too clear about the differences between the two, our AeroPress vs French Press article should help.
- You want something to use (and show off) at home – The AeroPress is quick and practical, but its best perk is that it’s portable. If you don’t plan to travel with your brewer and want a more aesthetically pleasing single serve coffee maker to keep on your countertop, then we think you are going to fall in love with the Nespresso Pixie.
- You want a portable coffee maker you can drink from – Yes, the Aeropress is easy to carry around, but you still need a mug or glass to hold its finished product. If you’re looking for a hybrid of a portable coffee maker and a travel mug, there are a few great options. For starters, AeroPress sells the AeroPress Go, a slightly more compact model with a cup included. Here’s where we compared the Aeropress vs the Aeropress Go. Or check out our Bodum Travel Press review, Oomph coffee maker review, or Wacaco Cuppamoka review.
- You don’t want to move a muscle to brew your coffee – While the Aeropress is an easy-to-use portable coffee maker, you’ll still need to exert a little effort to get your brew. If you’re not up for that hassle, opting for the Makita battery-operated brewer is a good idea. It’s not as light as the Aeropress, but it is still designed to be carried. Here’s our review of the Makita DCM501Z cordless coffee maker.
The Verdict: A Great Traveling Coffee Press
The moral of the story is THANK YOU, Alan Adler, the AeroPress inventor! Whether you use it for an Americano, an almost-espresso, or even a cold brew, we are confident that it won’t disappoint. That’s why it’s one of our top single-serve coffee makers.
The AeroPress is simple to use, but it still allows you to experiment and improve your barista skills. And this practical and compact coffee maker is perfect for the coffee enthusiast on the go who doesn’t want to compromise on their morning coffee routine while traveling.
- Marulanda, C. (2019, March 13). The History of The AeroPress, From Concept to Championships. Retrieved from https://www.perfectdailygrind.com/2019/03/the-history-of-the-aeropress-from-concept-to-championships/
- Cadwalader, Z. (2019, September 24). These Go To III: Introducing The AeroPress Go. Retrieved from https://sprudge.com/these-go-to-iii-introducing-the-aeropress-go-151461.html
- Cadwalader, Z. (2018, October 16). The Reusable Ameuus AeroPress Filter Is Mighty Fine. Retrieved from https://sprudge.com/the-resuable-ameuus-aeropress-filter-is-mighty-fine-137521.html