How do you make coffee without a brewer? With my ultimate guide on how to siphon brew coffee!
The procedure is surprisingly simple when it’s broken down, so don’t let the process intimidate you when I show you how in this concise eBook. Inside are detailed recipes for brewing both straight espresso and small cups of iced Americano too.
Don’t have any equipment laying around? No worries, these recipes can also be brewed with just two kitchen essentials! Read it today and enjoy all the info inside to help your caffeine addiction no matter where life takes you.
1. What is a siphon coffee maker and how does it work:
A siphon is a vacuum brewer that uses gravity to separate water from grounds. Once the water is heated, it’s pushed up from the lower chamber where it mixes with grounds and then allowed to steep following a filtration process in the upper chamber.
After a few minutes you remove it from heat and begin to push down on the siphon, which starts the filtration process to separate water from grounds. Voila!
Siphon coffee is the smoothest cup of coffee I’ve ever had, but it has a high learning curve because you have to babysit this thing until you get the hang of how to use it properly. It’s also one of the most fun coffee makers to use and it has this steampunk look that will really get your friends talking.
2. What are the different types of siphon brewers:
There’s two main types of siphons, which vary in size and design: Tabletop/Handheld Siphons: These can range from $30-$100+, but you can find them on Amazon for a great price.
I’ve been using mine for almost a year now and love it because it’s perfect for my small NYC apartment, but also comes with an attachable base so you don’t have to hold the siphon from underneath when mixing coffee and water together.
Plus- if you’re looking to get more than one siphon, you can buy the different size chambers on Amazon to accommodate your needs.
However, some may like tabletop models more because they’re sturdier and come with a little stand that makes it easier for you to pour into cups without spilling everywhere (though I usually just use my fingers).
Mini Siphons: A newer design of siphons, which I’m obsessed with because they’re small and come in cool designs. However, they use a cotton wick instead of a filter to purify water like table top models (which means you’ll need to replace the wicks more often if you use it daily).
The benefit is that these are truly portable because they fit inside travel mugs too, which makes them perfect for camping or hotel rooms when you need to brew up something quick.
2. How to make coffee with a siphon coffee maker:
There are a few different ways to make siphon coffee, but this how-to guide will give you the absolute best results. These recipes work for both tabletop and mini models as well as different strong brews like espresso and Americano .
a. How to Brew Straight Espresso:
What You’ll Need: Coarsely ground coffee Siphon brewer Wand for mixing coffee and water Paper filter Funnel
Step 1. Put a paper filter into the siphon’s upper chamber
Step 2. Screw on the top of chamber to create an airtight seal
Step 3. Rinse with hot water then let it drain
Step 4. Add 10 ounces of hot but not boiling water
Step 5. Add 1 ounce of coarsely ground coffee (see directions for grams/ounces below)
Step 6. Stir with wand to make sure all grounds are saturated
Step 7. Let it sit for 30 seconds then stir again
Step 8. Place the siphon on heat source
Step 9. Once brewing is finished, flip the siphon over
Step 10. Remove it from heat and serve (or keep it on the heat source by flipping it back over)
Step 1. If you want to make 2 cups of straight espresso instead, add 1 ounce (30 grams) of ground coffee and let it steep for 3 minutes before flipping and serving
Step 2. Don’t forget to rinse with hot water first!
Step 3. Make sure to use coarsely ground coffee because grinding it too fine will clog the filter
To make 18 ounces of siphon brewed straight espresso, use 10 grams per 3 ounces (90 grams total) water for a total of 27.8 fluid ounces.
To make 24 ounces of siphon brewed straight espresso, use 12.5 grams per 3 ounces (100 grams total) water for a total of 33.75 fluid ounces.
b. How to Brew Americano:
What You’ll Need: Coarsely ground coffee Siphon brewer Funnel Paper filter
All steps are the same as for making straight espresso except for step 5
Step 5. Add 1 ounce (30 grams) each of hot and cold water
Step 1. Make sure to use cold water for this recipe because adding hot water will cause a diluted brew
Step 2. Make sure to use at least 30 grams of coffee, or it won’t be a true Americano
Step 3. If you’re looking for an iced version, brew with cold water and chill before serving
To make 18 ounces of siphon brewed Americano, use 11 grams per 4 ounces (88.8 grams total) water for a total of 27.8 fluid ounces.
To make 24 ounces of siphon brewed Americano, use 14 grams per 4 ounces (113.4 grams total) water for a total of 33.75 fluid ounces.
3. What are the benefits of siphon coffee vs drip/French press/etc?
Siphon brewers use a method called “steeping” to extract coffee flavors (which means you don’t get that bitter flavor like other methods because it’s mostly just hot water being used).
Because you’re not pouring near boiling water over the coffee grounds, it produces a much lower acidity so your stomach can handle it better.
Plus-you can steep for longer or shorter depending on how strong you want your coffee, which is perfect for those who drink lots of small cups throughout the day.
The only drawback is that it’s a very slow process (around 8 minutes or more), which means you’ll need to plan ahead if you want coffee during your weekday morning routine.
4. Where can I buy one of these things?
Any kitchen supply store should have tabletop models, and you can always get them online.
Here are some links to a few good ones: Store-Bought Siphon Brewers from World Market or Sur La Table Floor Model Siphons from the San Francisco Coffee company
5. Tips on choosing the right equipment for your needs:
Brewing Options: You can buy a siphon brewer with the stand and chamber made out of glass (cheaper, but fragile and slow brewing times), or you can spend more on one made of metal (faster, less likely to break).
Size: The smaller models are perfect for making 1-2 cups at a time. It’s also the ideal size to take when you travel. If you want to make 3-4 cups, get a larger model.
Easy Cleanup: Some models come with 2 different chambers so you can brew espresso in one chamber and Americano in another without having to clean out between drinks. That means you’ll be able to save time if you plan on drinking espresso throughout the day.
Hot Plate: If you’re looking for something more portable, get a model that has its own hot plate (and no water chamber) like the Demi John Siphon .
Temperature Control: Some models offer an adjustable heat source so you can control how fast it brews or if you want to keep it warm at the end.
Is it difficult to operate?
Not at all. It’s very easy and straightforward to use.
All you need to do is measure your water, grind your coffee, heat up the brewer, put in the filter and coffee grounds, pour in the hot water just off the boil (it should take about 1 minute), wait for it to steep, then pour in the cold water at the end.
Is there a difference between siphon brewers and vacuum brewers?
Siphon brewers are vacuum brewers because the two chambers create a vacuum-like situation where pressure is lowered when you add cold water.
Yes, some brands call their siphons “steeping brewers” because they don’t technically create a vacuum, but the mechanics of the brewing process are still based on lowering pressure.
What is siphon coffee vs regular drip or French press?
Siphon coffee uses an entirely different steeping method than other methods. With drip/French press/etc, hot water is poured over the coffee grounds and it drips through the filter.
With siphon brewers, you put in your water (just off boil) and suck it up with a tube till all the chambers are filled. Then you just wait for it to steep/cook which usually takes around 8 minutes depending on how strong you want your coffee.
That’s why it’s a great way to make coffee if you drink lots of small cups throughout the day and would like to time them perfectly so they all come out at the same strength.
How do I clean my siphon brewer?
Usually there is one glass chamber and one metal chamber so your cleaning process is much simpler than other brewers.
You can either rub out any leftover grounds or soak the metal chamber with hot water and citric acid, then scrub it lightly (be very careful with glass siphon brewers because they’re fragile).
In my opinion, all siphon brewers have a unique way of tasting coffee that’s unlike any other brewer. If you’re not into “brewing your own” and just want a regular cup of joe without thinking about the different brewing methods, this is probably not for you.
But if you make lots of small cups throughout the day or if you’re just looking for something new, this is a great way to make coffee. It’s also nice for entertaining because everyone will be curious about it and most likely intrigued by the shape of the brewer itself.
Now that you have all the info, go ahead and buy your own siphon brewer HERE . If you want to learn more ways of brewing coffee, check out my other articles on the subject HERE.