Step-by-Step Guide to Making Coffee with a French Press

CoffeeLogik is reader-supported. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

French Press Brewing Method

Everything you need to know to brew a perfect cup of coffee with a French Press.

Bodum 1928-16US4 Chambord French Press Coffee Maker, 1 Liter, 34 Ounce, Chrome

Using the French Press coffee brewing method , you can brew a heavy and dense cup of joe. When it comes to making French press coffee, the secret lies in the details. French Press coffee is one of the most popular coffee brewing methods out there.

Some people consider French Press as the hardest brewing technique out there. But once you get the hang of the recipe and are comfortable with it, you will become a fan of the French Press. 

Jump To The Step by step Brewing Guide

Essential Items for Making French Press Coffee at Home

French Press Coffee MakerAffiliate LinkFrench Press Coffee Maker is also known as the Plunger Pot. It was invented in France back in the mid-1800s. 

Spoon or Stirrer – After we add ground coffee and water to the pot, we will use the spoon to stir the mixture. Use a spoon with a long handle. If you do not have a long steel spoon, you can also use a bamboo chopstick.  After we add the water to the ground coffee, they will form little crusts that will float at the top. Use the spoon or bamboo chopstick to integrate the lump into the water thoroughly.

Kettle – The Affiliate Linkkettle is needed to boil the water. Make sure you are using a kettle that has a 350-grams capacity. 

Scale – As mentioned above, the secret to brewing a perfect cup of joe with French Press lies in the details. We are going to use the Affiliate Linkscale to measure the ground coffee and water. Always stick to the water to the coffee ratio for French Press. But once you get the hang of it, you are at liberty to experiment.

Water – We are going to pour warm water over the ground coffee. Take water in the kettle, and put it on a stove. When it reaches boiling point, take it off and put it aside.  When you are adding water to the ground coffee, use a pattern. Start at the rims and slowly get to the center. Or start at the center and slowly move towards the rim. Your goal is to make sure the water is evenly submerging all of the coffee grounds. 

Coarsely Ground Coffee – Unlike other coffee brewing methods, the French Press is good with Affiliate Linkcoarsely ground coffee. This is because French Press uses a full immersion method of coffee brewing. The ground coffee will be completely submerged in the water. If you have a burr coffee grinder at home, use the higher number on the settings.  But if you get your ground coffee from a local shop, ask for grounds for a French Press. The coffee grinder will understand. 

How to Prepare for Making French Press Coffee

The secret to brewing a good cup of coffee using the French Press lies within the coffee grind you use. Choose medium-grind coffee with thorough uniformity and consistency. If you use the coarse ground, it might clog the filter. On the other hand, if you use the fine ground, it might pass through the filter, resulting in a muddy taste.

French Press only takes 4-5 minutes to brew. To keep track of the brewing time, it is advised that you use a timer. The timer on your smartphone will also work. 

French Press

Video Tutorials for Brewing the Perfect Cup of French Press Coffee

The following videos show the french press brewing method, they should give you a better idea on how to make coffee in a french press.

Source – Home Insider
Source – Buddy Brew Coffee

French Press Coffee Step By Step Brewing Guide

Boil Water – Take a kettle, and bring it under your sink tap. You need to boil 350 grams of water for this coffee brewing technique. As far as the coffee to water ratio is concerned, we will stick to a 1:12 ratio. So if you are using 350 grams of water, you will need 30 grams of ground coffee. 

Add ground coffee – As a rule of thumb, add 7-8 grams of coffee per 200 grams of water. 

Add Water – After you have poured the ground coffee into the press, pour hot water into it. The water does not necessarily have to be boiling. If you add 30 grams of ground coffee, add 60 grams of water to the pot. The rule is to have double the amount of water as coffee.  Use a spoon or a bamboo chopstick to stir the mixture gently. Now reinsert the plunger into the pot. Stop just above the water surface and ground coffee. Don’t plunge just yet. You should wait for 4-5 minutes (use a timer) for the coffee for steeping in the warm water.

Applying Pressure  – Take your French Press Coffee maker and place it on a dry and flat surface. Hold the handle firmly, and pull out the plunger. Now press the plunger down, exerting steady pressure.  If the press is hard, it means your ground coffee is coarse. On the flip side, if the press drops down with a sudden thunk, the ground coffee is too fine. 

How Hard Should You Push – Then how would you know if the coffee is perfectly grounded for the French Press? Well, if the ground is perfect, you will need to put 15-20 pounds of pressure on the press. You can measure this using your bathroom scale. Gently push your hand down until you reach 15-20 pounds. With time, you will build muscle memory. 

French Press

Serving Tips for French Press Coffee

If you followed the above instructions carefully, you would only require 4-5 minutes of brewing time. With the French Press, we are not using any paper filters. As a result, coffee brewed using a French Press has more oil content, giving it a richer and fuller body.  

After the brew is complete, pour the coffee down into your coffee cup, or travel mug. To get the best taste, you should not let your coffee sit for too long. Coffee tastes the best when it is fresh. 

Also, store the extra brew in a separate carafe or pitcher. Remember, the ground coffee is in contact with the water at all times inside the French Press. So the longer you keep it that way, the more bitter it will get. You can also store it in the fridge if you like a chilled cup of joe right before bed. 

French Press coffee Calculator

Use the calculator below to figure out how much coffee and water you should use for a perfect cup of french press coffee.

Coffee Calculator

Coffee Calculator

Enter the number of cups of coffee you want to make. The results will be calculated based on the recommended Coffee:Water ratio of 1:12.

Coffee grams ounces
Water milliliters fluid ounces

French Press FAQs

How Long Do You Brew French Press Coffee?

4-5 Minutes.

Depending on the strength you want your coffee to be, a good rule of thumb is 4-5 minutes. Any longer can cause over-extraction and bitter coffee.

How Should You Grind Coffee For French Press Coffee?

Use a coarse grind for the coffee used in French Press Coffee. Finer ground coffee can cause grit in your coffee.


If you are new to French Press, you will need some time to get used to it. But once you know by heart the recipe, the right water temperature, the ideal ratio of liquid to grounds, and the brew time, you will no longer have to have your recipe book in front of you every time you brew coffee using the French Press. 

Do let us know if you have any feedback. We love hearing from you. Leave a comment below sharing your queries, and we will get back to you.

Other Brewing Guides You May Find Useful.

French Press
Espresso Machine
Drip Coffee