9 Best French Press Coffee Makers of 2023
French press is something of a kitchen staple. Yet, it’s often overlooked when it comes to brewing specialty coffee. It might have a simple design, but the materials, construction and filter can all make the difference between an average French press and a great one.
We outline the elements that go into making a quality coffee press, and some of the best models you can buy in 2023.
At A Glance:
The Best French Press Coffee Makers of 2023
Let’s take a look at our picks for this best French Press coffee makers round up and discover why each one made the list.
|The Frieling Stainless Steel French Press||
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|Rainbean Mini French Press||
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|The Bodum Chambord French Press||
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|Barista Warrior French Press||
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|The Bodum Brazil French Press||
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|Stanley Travel Mug French Press||
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|Espro P3 French Press||
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|The Sterling Pro French Press||
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|The Coffee Gator French Press||
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The Frieling Stainless Steel French Press is one of our favourite coffee makers. It is one of the most stylish (and most expensive) press pots we've selected. It is constructed from 100% stainless steel, and comes in sizes from 240 ml to 1.3 litres.
It also features a double-walled interior, which makes it very effective at retaining heat. In addition to that, the Frieling’s two-stage filter fits more snugly into the chamber. With two Italian fine mesh screens, it's excellent at keeping out sediment (while letting in those coffee oils)
All components of this French press coffee maker are machine washable, and the filter components don't even need to be disassembled for cleaning.
Read our Frieling French Press review to learn more.
With a capacity of just 350 ml, the Rainbean Mini French Press is one of the smallest on our list. What we love about it is that it also comes with a suitably small price tag. This would be a great choice for a second French press at the office.
There’s nothing groundbreaking about this mini cafetière, but it’s got all you need to make a single cup of satisfying coffee. The beaker is made of heat-safe borosilicate glass, and the plastic parts (including the filter in the spout) are BPA-free.
The filter in the plunger is a standard single screen made from stainless steel, but we do like that there’s a spare included in the box. You’ll also receive a coffee scoop and a brush to help you clean the carafe – with the small size you might not be able to get your hand in there.
Somewhere amongst all the confusing press pot origin stories, the Dutch company, Bodum has also staked a claim. Although Bodum does not pretend to have invented the coffee press, they certainly contend to have perfected it.
I won’t support or refute this claim, but I will say that it’s no mystery why Starbucks continues to stock their shelves with these very well designed coffee makers.
Bodum has a number of different glass-walled French press coffee makers available (which you can see here), but this model is the classic. I have owned and used this press, and can attest to its reliability and ease of using and cleaning. The borosilicate glass used by Bodum has proven to be very durable and heat resistant. If you want a clean cup, be aware that the Bodum Chambord will leave a little fine sediment in your coffee, because the plunger doesn't press all the way to the bottom.
A stainless steel French press is designed to keep your coffee hotter for longer, but did you ever wonder how much hotter? This cafetiere from Barista Warrior features a thermometer built into the lid, so you can keep an eye on the temperature and drink your last cup before it gets too cold.
Even without the thermometer, this is an attractive purchase. The double-walled stainless steel construction not only provides great insulation, but it's also incredibly durable. If you have any doubts, the company offers a lifetime warranty on the product.
This French press features a double stainless steel filter for less sediment in your brew. In even better news, the screens are easily detached and can be put in the dishwasher for a hassle-free cleanup.
The Bodum Brazil is rated as Amazon's #1 best seller, and the attractive price isn't the only reason. The carafe is borosilicate glass, but it's carried in a handle, base, and lid of BPA-free plastic, which serves as a combination shock absorber and design element. In addition to basic black, the plastic components are available in a brilliant apple-green and a cheerful red.
Bodum's standard three-part filtration system is present here, with a stainless steel mesh held in place by a spiral plate on top and a cross plate below. These disassemble easily for cleaning and are dishwasher-safe, as is the borosilicate carafe.
Home Grounds is a big fan of the Stanley Travel mug, so it makes sense that the French press model would make it onto this list. It combines the durability and insulation properties that Stanley products are famous for, with the ability to brew coffee in the same mug.
This mug will keep your drink hot for an incredible 4 hours. You can also use it without the French press basket as a standalone travel mug, which will also keep iced liquids cold for up to 20 hours. The screw-on lid is leakproof, and there’s a stainless steel carrying loop so you can carry it with you on the trail.
Just be aware that if you’re making this on the go, your brew will get stronger the longer you leave it in the mug, as the grounds stay at the bottom.
Most of the French press models you come across will feature the same style of filter at the end of the plunger. The Espro P3 is a little different, with a dual-layer mesh filter basket.
This unique design, with its silicon outer ring, helps to completely separate the water from the coffee grounds. Once it’s pushed down the extraction process is halted and you can avoid an over-extracted cup of coffee.
The glass here is supposedly 40% thicker than other brands, making it more durable and proving better heat retention. If you do want to keep your coffee hot for longer, you can upgrade to the Espro P6, which features a stainless steel carafe.
The stainless steel Sterling Pro will have you seeing double. First, its simple, clean design – a number of cylinders of different sizes assembled into a pitcher, a handle, and a knob for the plunger – has a huge number of imitators. Second, one of its key features, the SterlingPro Double Wall Construction, uses a double wall of stainless steel to provide maximum heat retention.
But the last double is a fairly exclusive feature: its double screen filter. On the face of it, this simple, second mesh screen traps more sediment than a single. It's still not going to give you a completely grit-free cup like a pour over or drip coffee machine will, but the coffee is less chewy than what you get from the usual French press, yet still retains all the oils and solids that make French press coffee so flavourful.
Read our Sterling Pro French Press review to know if it is the right coffee maker for you.
Like the idea of double-wall stainless construction but don't want a silver cylinder like everyone else? The Coffee Gator has the construction you need with the range of visual appeal you want. Choose from gray, green, pink, or brushed stainless to bring a pop of colour to your morning cuppa.
It's only available in a 1-litre capacity, but that's a good all-around size, especially if you share your morning coffee – for example, it's just shy of three 240-ml cups or two 530-ml travel mugs. And like the Sterling Pro, the Gator has a double filter to remove more sediment, without removing the oils that make the French press provide such delicious coffee.
It even comes with an airtight mini container that holds enough coffee for two pots, if you plan on traveling.
Keep an eye on your cholesterol levels, to make sure your LDL levels don’t rise over time. And keep your pressed coffee habit in check: stick to no more than four cups per day
Read our Coffee Gator French Press review to learn more.
What To Look For In a French Press
Using the French Press is easy, and delicious: Grind freshly roasted, high-quality coffee beans in the right coarseness. Use a grinder that can deliver the right coarseness for a French Press brew. Then, put the ground coffee in, pour hot water (not boiling) over it, and simply press down when your timer says ‘Ding!' Done.
No precision pouring, stirring, or Gooseneck kettles required. No paper filters needed. Many aficionados of coffee say the press pot produces the best brewed coffee. It certainly captures the full essence of the bean.
Despite how simple the mechanism is, French Presses come in all sorts of variations, and it can be difficult to separate the functional from the flashy.
- French Press Vs Drip Coffee
- Moka Post vs French Press
- Aeropress vs French Press
- French Press vs The Chemex
- Best Coffee For French Press
- How to use a French Press
To help you navigate the flurry of dinky knock-offs and overpriced frustration traps, here is a list of what to look for the perfect press:
Material Stainless Steel vs Glass (and heat retention)
These coffee makers are almost exclusively made from one of two materials: borosilicate glass or stainless steel. Although some may think the choice between one or the other comes down to visual appeal, it’s really more of a practical matter.
Glass French presses are pretty, but won’t keep your coffee warm as well as a double-wall stainless-steel press.
However, if you feel particularly driven towards glass, breathe easy, because unless you plan to let your coffee sit for more than ten minutes, the amount of heat lost in a glass coffee press isn’t too significant. If you pour it into an insulated travel mug the moment you push down the plunger, choosing a glass or stainless-steel press makes no difference.
Between these two choices stainless steel offers you more control over temperature for a longer period of time (1) and this may be good for someone brewing for more than themselves.
If you’re the one responsible for the morning coffee for you and your special someone, ensuring that their coffee will stay hot – no matter how long they take doing God knows what in the bathroom – can be the key to a happy morning.
Also, stainless-steel is orders of magnitude more accident-proof than glass carafes (…yes, we're speaking from personal experience here).
Although the glass often used in press pots – borosilicate glass – isn’t as fragile as momma’s fancy wine glasses, it’s still glass, which, as science still maintains, is more prone to breaking than steel.
Design & Comfort
Design may seem superficial – and it often is – but it can also be practical. Comfort, for example, is one of those unappreciated-until-you-try-it advantages.
Considering the times we crave coffee the most are also the times when our fine motor skills are at their lowest (AKA mornings), a comfortable handle may reduce the rate of morning rage-attacks.
Whether you’re pouring for just yourself, or for a plus-one, a good handle keeps that delicate French Press coffee maker from careening off the counter to an untimely, messy death.
While on the topic of design, it’d be evasive to not at least mention aesthetics, so I’ll say this: a handsome coffee maker isn’t always a well functioning one. Showing off your pretty new French Press coffee brewer is fun and all, but delicious coffee doesn’t always come from the prettiest instruments (e.g. the AeroPress).
Size – Do You Really Need a French Press That large?
When you make a cup of coffee, are you really just making a cup, or is it more like two cups? If your morning “cup” consists of one to wake and one to go, then you probably need something that can keep up.
There are a few standard sizes to choose from, but 360 ml and 1 litre are the most popular. If you're alone or with someone else, I'd recommend going with the 360 ml. To give you some perspective, 12 oz. gives you one large cup of coffee, or two small cups. Needless to say, the 360 ml model is also by far the more travel-friendly coffee press, for all you road brewers out there.
If you often find yourself brewing for your family, colleagues or groups of friends, opt for the 1 litre version. This would also be our recommendation if you're dealing with two coffee guzzlers, as you won't get two cups of coffee out of the 360 ml.
But bigger isn't always better. French Presses are all about proportions. If you're going to use the 1 litre size you'll need to put more coffee grounds and hot water in the carafe to make the ratio work with the depth of the plunger.
Filtration System (which affects taste)
The final consideration before purchasing your press is its filter. The filter in a typical French press, composed of a sandwich of steel mesh held in place by stamped steel, is not nearly as fine as those in a drip or pour over coffee maker, and therefore not as good at keeping out bits of sediment. And more sediment in your brew will change the taste as it over extracts the remaining coffee.
However, a French press filter will not filter out the tasty and aromatic coffee oils as other filters will.
Although some people like some extra grit floating around in their coffee (2), it’s not for everybody. That said, there are some unique ways to get around brew debris. One of these, the “pull” method of brewing, has you place ground coffee on top of the filter, and pull them out after steeping.
Get a good grinder so you can lessen the chance of having too many ‘fines’ that will sneak past the filter and cause the coffee to be over extracted.
One of the great things about brewing with a French press is that there are so many brands and models to choose from, regardless of your needs and budget. We’re fans of all the coffee presses on this list, but in the end the Frieling Stainless Steel French Press came out on top.
The mirror-finished stainless steel construction makes the Frieling a thing of beauty, and the double-wall carafe keeps your coffee hot four times longer than a glass carafe. Dishwasher safe, 5-year warranty, and a two-stage filter round out the winning characteristics.
The best beans for French press are generally considered to be medium or dark roast. The French press method highlights the big body and rich mouthfeel of darker roasts, while reducing the bitterness. It should go without saying that your beans should be freshly ground directly before brewing if you want the best possible flavour.
French press coffee is not bad for you, but it can be worse than filtered coffee for your cholesterol levels. Unfiltered coffee, which includes French press coffee, contains higher levels of cafestol, which can increase bad cholesterol (3). This compound is filtered out in other coffee brewing methods.
The different extraction methods for making coffee are pressure, filtration, immersion, and decoction. French press is an immersion brewing method, which means the coffee grounds are steeped in water until the desired extraction level is achieved. Cold brew is another method of brewing that uses the immersion method.
Your French press coffee might taste bad for a number of reasons, but the most common one is over-extraction. Even after you depress the plunger, the gourds are still in contact with the water and will continue to brew. Ideally, you should pour your coffee straight away or decant it into another vessel. If you don’t clean your French press carefully after every brew, you might also have coffee residue on the glass or mesh filter. This residue isn’t bad for you, but when the oils in the residue go rancid, they will affect the taste of your coffee. Other reasons you might not like the taste of your French press coffee include using old or bad beans, grinding your beans too fine, or using water that’s too hot.
Yes, you can make cold brew in a French press, in fact, it’s a great way to make this drink. Start by coarsely grinding and measuring your beans – you’ll need a ratio of 1:4 – 1:5. Slowly pour in room temperature water, without stirring. Add the lid and leave it to sit at room temperature for at least 12 hours. Do not put it in the fridge during the steeping process as this will slow down the extraction. After 12 hours, depress the lunger slightly and decant into another container to avoid over-extraction. You can now put it in the fridge to chill or drink as is.
- Buchanan, M. (2013, June 18). Chasing the Perfect Cup of Coffee with Science. Retrieved June 2, 2019, from https://gizmodo.com/chasing-the-perfect-cup-of-coffee-with-science-5642561
- Hoffmann, J. (2016, October 04). Cupping Vs French Press. Retrieved June 2, 2019, from https://jimseven.com/2010/11/04/cupping-vs-french-press/
- Godman, H. (2016, April 30). Pressed coffee is going mainstream – but should you drink it? Retrieved June 2, 2019, from https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/pressed-coffee-going-mainstream-drink-201604299530