paper filter for coffee

Are you struggling to determine the right amount of coffee to put in your filter? Our detailed brewing guide has got you covered! We'll take you through the step-by-step process of determining the perfect amount of coffee for your brew, providing you with expert tips and insights to achieve the perfect cup every time. Say goodbye to guesswork and hello to a delicious and satisfying coffee!

Understanding Coffee Ratios

coffee ground in filter

When brewing coffee, achieving the perfect taste largely depends on the balance between coffee grounds and water. In this section, we will go into detail about coffee ratios, the golden ratio, and serving sizes, providing all the information you need to perfect your coffee brewing process.

Coffee to Water Ratio

The coffee to water ratio refers to the relationship between the amount of coffee grounds and the amount of water used to brew coffee. This ratio can vary depending on personal preferences and brewing methods. A common recommendation from the Specialty Coffee Association of Europe (SCAE) is to use 60 grams of coffee per liter of water. For a 200 milliliter cup, you would need about 12 grams of coffee powder.

Another useful method to determine the ideal coffee-to-water ratio is to divide the desired water volume by the proportion in the ratio. For example, if you wish to brew 1 liter of coffee with a 1:16 ratio, you would divide 1000 grams (the water volume) by 16, giving you 62.5 grams of coffee for that particular ratio.

Golden Ratio

The "Golden Ratio" in coffee brewing is often referred to as a 1:18 ratio, meaning one part coffee to 18 parts water. This ratio is considered to provide a balanced and flavorful cup of coffee. However, it is important to note that personal taste preferences may vary, and experimenting with different ratios can help you find the perfect balance for your own palate.

Serving Size

Your serving size will also impact the amount of coffee grounds you should use. Common coffee serving sizes are usually around 2 ounces (about 60 milliliters). To maintain a consistent coffee-to-water ratio, you can use the 1:16 rule mentioned earlier, which would require approximately 3 grams of coffee per ounce of water. For a 2-ounce serving, you would need about 6 to 7 grams of coffee grounds.

Adjusting the coffee-to-water ratio can help you achieve a bolder or milder brew, depending on your preference. For example, using a 1:7 ratio would result in a more robust flavor, while a 1:13 ratio would yield a milder cup.

Keep in mind that different brewing methods and techniques may require different ratios, and it is essential to experiment with different approaches to find the best balance for your chosen brewing style.

Measuring Techniques

measuring coffee

When it comes to brewing the perfect cup of coffee, the right amount of coffee grounds is essential. The following section will discuss various measuring techniques to determine the correct amount of coffee for your brew, including using a kitchen scale, tablespoons and volume measurements, and scoops.

Using a Kitchen Scale

A kitchen scale is the most accurate way to measure coffee grounds, as it provides a precise measurement based on weight. In general, the Specialty Coffee Association of Europe (SCAE) recommends using 60 grams of coffee per liter of water. For a cup size of 200 milliliters, you'll need 12 grams of coffee. Adjustments to this ratio can be made to suit your taste preferences.

When using a kitchen scale, first, place your coffee container on the scale and zero it out. Then, add the desired amount of coffee grounds until the scale indicates the correct weight. This method helps eliminate variables when preparing your coffee, ensuring consistent results each time.

Tablespoons and Volume Measurements

While using a scale provides the most accurate measurements, using volume-based measurements like tablespoons is still a common method. One standard tablespoon of coffee grounds is approximately equivalent to 5 grams of coffee. To calculate the number of tablespoons required for your desired coffee strength, consider the recommended ratios. Divide the total amount of coffee grounds (in grams) needed by 5 grams to determine the number of tablespoons to use. For instance, to brew coffee with the SCAE’s recommended ratio of 60 grams per liter, you would need 12 grams of coffee for a 200-milliliter cup, or around 2.4 tablespoons.

Keep in mind that using tablespoons is less precise than a scale, as each scoop of coffee may have varying amounts based on the grind size and leveling technique. It's essential to level off each tablespoon to ensure consistent volume measurements.


Another common measuring tool for coffee grounds is the coffee scoop. These scoops are usually designed to hold a specific volume or weight of coffee. Depending on the manufacturer, a coffee scoop can hold approximately 7 to 10 grams of coffee. The number of scoops needed will depend on the size of your coffee scoop and the desired strength of your coffee.

To determine the number of scoops needed, first, check the weight or volume capacity of your coffee scoop, and then use the recommended coffee-to-water ratio to calculate the required grounds. Keep in mind that each scoop should be leveled off to maintain consistency in measurement.

In conclusion, the most accurate way to measure coffee grounds is by using a kitchen scale that provides precise weight measurements. However, if a scale is not available, tablespoons and coffee scoops can still offer relatively consistent results when leveling off each measurement. Experiment with different ratios and methods to find the perfect coffee strength for your preferences.

Brewing Methods and Ratios

coffee Brewing Methods

Different coffee brewing methods require varying coffee-to-water ratios to achieve the best taste and extraction. In this section, we will explore the recommended ratios for some popular brewing methods.

Drip Coffee Maker

The drip coffee maker is a classic brewing method that utilizes a paper or metal filter to hold ground coffee while hot water drips through the grounds, extracting flavors into the pot below. A common ratio for drip coffee makers is 1:16, meaning 1 gram of coffee for every 16 grams of water. However, taste preferences may vary, and some may prefer a 1:15 or 1:18 ratio for a stronger or weaker cup, respectively.

French Press

A French Press uses a plunger and a metal mesh filter to steep coarse coffee grounds in hot water before separating them from the liquid. The recommended ratio for a French Press is 1:15, with 1 gram of coffee for every 15 grams of water. Adjusting the ratio within the range of 1:14 to 1:18 can help in achieving the desired strength according to individual taste.


Espresso is made by forcing hot water under pressure through finely ground coffee beans. The resulting concentrated coffee has a rich and bold flavor. For espresso, a typical recipe involves using 18 to 20 grams of coffee per 36 to 40 grams of water. This can be referred to as a 1:2 coffee-to-water ratio (1 gram of coffee for every 2 grams of water).

Turkish Coffee

Turkish coffee is a unique method that involves the use of very finely ground coffee beans, which are brewed in water and then poured with the sediments into a small coffee cup. This method requires a finer coffee-to-water ratio, with 1 gram of coffee for every 10 grams of water as a starting point. Adjusting the ratio according to taste preferences may be necessary.


The Chemex is a pour-over brewing method that uses a thick, bonded paper filter to achieve a clean and flavorful coffee. A common ratio for brewing with a Chemex is 1:16, meaning 1 gram of coffee for every 16 grams of water. However, personal taste preferences may lead the user to experiment with ratios between 1:14 and 1:18.

Cold Brew

Cold brew is a method of steeping coffee grounds in cold water for an extended time, usually 12 to 24 hours. This produces a smooth and low-acidity coffee concentrate. Cold brew typically requires a higher coffee-to-water ratio, such as 1:8, meaning 1 gram of coffee for every 8 grams of water. Diluting the concentrate with water or milk to taste is recommended.

Factors Affecting Coffee Taste

coffee and coffee beans

In this section, we will explore the various factors that affect the taste of coffee, with a focus on how much coffee to put in the filter. These factors include Coffee Ground Density, Coffee Strength, Grind Size and Consistency, and Brewing Time.

Coffee Ground Density

The density of coffee grounds plays a crucial role in determining the final taste of your coffee. A denser coffee ground will generally provide a richer and more intense flavor, as it has less space for water to pass through. This implies that the water will interact with the coffee particles for a longer time, resulting in stronger coffee extraction.

Coffee Strength

Strength refers to the intensity of flavors and aroma in a coffee. The ideal amount of coffee to put in the filter depends on how strong you prefer your coffee. Generally, a higher coffee-to-water ratio will yield stronger coffee. To achieve the desired strength of your coffee, adjust the amount of coffee grounds while maintaining consistency in other brewing factors.

Grind Size and Consistency

Grind size and consistency have a significant impact on the taste of coffee. The ideal grind size depends on the brewing method being used. For example, a drip filter coffee requires a medium grind, while a French press calls for a coarser grind. Consistency is essential, as unevenly ground coffee can lead to uneven extraction, resulting in an imbalanced taste.

Brewing Time

The brewing time can greatly affect the taste of your coffee. A longer brewing time will result in more extraction of coffee compounds, leading to stronger and potentially bitter flavors. On the other hand, a shorter brewing time may yield weak coffee. To find the ideal brewing time, experiment with different durations while keeping other factors such as grind size, coffee ground density, and coffee strength consistent.

Expert Tips on Brewing Coffee

pour over coffee

Advice from Baristas

When it comes to brewing the perfect cup of coffee, baristas often have valuable insights. Some key recommendations include using fresh, high-quality beans, grinding the coffee just before brewing, and using clean, filtered water for the best results. Additionally, it's important to experiment with different brewing methods to find the one that suits your personal preferences best.

Coffee to Water Ratio Calculator

One crucial aspect of brewing coffee is getting the coffee to water ratio right as it directly impacts the taste and strength of the final cup. A commonly recommended starting point is the 1:16 ratio, which means 1 gram of coffee to 16 milliliters of water. For example, if you're brewing with 20 grams of coffee, you'll need 320 milliliters of water (20g x 16 = 320ml).

However, feel free to adjust the ratio slightly to taste, as personal preferences may vary. Using a digital scale to measure both the coffee and the water can help ensure accurate and consistent results.

Considering Flavor and Science

The flavor of your coffee is affected by numerous variables, such as the temperature of the water, the type of coffee beans used, and the grind size. Ideally, the water temperature should be around 200 °F (93 °C) for a balanced extraction. In the case of very dark roasts, slightly lower temperatures of around 195 °F (91 °C) can help prevent over-extraction and bitterness.

The grind size is also an important factor. A finer grind is suitable for methods like espresso, while coarser grinds work well with techniques such as French press. Taking the time to understand the science behind brewing coffee can help you achieve the desired flavor and strength in your cup.

Brewing coffee is both an art and a science, and fine-tuning your method requires attention to detail and practice. By following expert advice, using a precise coffee-to-water ratio, and considering the variables that affect flavor, you'll be on your way to enjoy a perfectly brewed cup every time.


coffee bean measuring

In conclusion, finding the perfect coffee-to-water ratio for your filter coffee depends on personal preferences and the brewing method you choose. The traditional 1:8 ratio can act as a starting point, specifically for beginners. This means that for every 1 gram of coffee, you would use 8 grams of water.

It's essential to note that the cup markers on most coffee makers differ from standard cup measurements. Generally, a single cup in a coffee maker equals 5 to 6 fluid ounces, rather than the regular 8-ounce cup. Therefore, for a standard 12-ounce mug, you might need to brew about two cups on your coffee machine.

As you become more experienced and develop your brewing skills, feel free to experiment with the coffee-to-water ratio. This will enable you to customize your filter coffee's strength and flavor to your liking. Remember that factors such as the type of coffee bean, grind setting, and extraction time can also impact the taste and quality of your beverage.

Here are a few tips for adjusting your coffee-to-water ratio:

  • For a stronger coffee, use a higher coffee-to-water ratio (e.g., 1:6 or 1:7).
  • For a milder taste, use a lower coffee-to-water ratio (e.g., 1:10 or 1:12).
  • Adjust your grind size to affect extraction and flavor profile: finer grinds for a more robust, bolder taste and coarser grinds for a more balanced, less bitter flavor.

Ultimately, the key to achieving the perfect cup of filter coffee is through trial and error. By experimenting with different ratios, grind settings, beans, and brewing techniques, you will be able to find a combination that suits your taste preferences, giving you the ideal filter coffee experience.

Drip coffeeFilter coffee
Tony Barlow

Tony Barlow

Majesty Coffee Technical Sales Expert - Meet the Team

Tony Barlow, with over a decade of experience in the coffee industry, is the go-to technical sales expert at Majesty Coffee. He's passionate about helping businesses find the right espresso equipment for their needs.

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