AeroPress Grind Size Guide – Bun Brewing Basics

AeroPress is one of, no – scrap that THE best value coffee maker on the market and (in our reckoning) has been for some time now.

If you discovered the humble AeroPress during lockdowns, then hello and welcome, if you’re a seasoned pro with this handy little device and you’re just looking to perfect your brew, then welcome as well.

Simple to use, easy to transport, lightweight, and (above all) exceptionally affordable as a home or office coffee maker, there is much to love about the AeroPress.

However, when it comes to perfecting your brew and finding the ideal grind size for AeroPress, as well as a long list of other nuances, there is a surprisingly large room for variation in the outcome.

So, to simplify things and give you the best chance of creating the perfect AeroPress at home, we’ll provide insights on one of the most frequently asked AeroPress questions on the internet – what’s the ideal grind size?  

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What’s the Ideal Grind Size for AeroPress?

For the best AeroPress brew, we recommend using a medium-fine coffee grind size.

If you’re doing it by eye sight, then medium-fine is roughly the same consistency as table salt. Medium fine grind falls somewhere between drip grind and espresso grind. This means you want to create something much finer than French press (coarse grind) but not as fine as you would use for an espresso (fine grind).

AeroPress Grind Size Advice for Handheld Coffee Grinders

If you’re using a hand grinder, achieving a medium-fine coffee grind will take a bit of experimentation. Adjust your coffee grind handle to a slightly coarser setting than what you would use for an espresso but finer than you would use for a drip coffee or French press. Finding this exact setting will depend on your hand grinder model. If you’ve invested in a popular model of hand grinder, then you’ll probably find that it has somewhat of an online cult following with online users who can suggest the perfect setting for your model.

AeroPress Grind Size Advice for Machine Coffee Grinders

When using a machine grinder (home or professional), you’ll be looking to find the middle ground between the drip coffee and espresso settings. Again, it may take a bit of trial and error to find the perfect grind size for AeroPress when using a machine grinder. The goal is to create a grind that prevents coffee from dripping through too quickly while also allowing the best extraction and flavour from your coffee beans.

How Can I Tell If My Grind Is Too Fine?

Coffee beans that are ground too finely for your AeroPress are likely to lead to over-extraction, which will, in most cases, lead to a bitter cup of coffee.

If your coffee grind is too fine for your AeroPress, you’ll experience a ‘caking’ of the coffee. Essentially, this means that your hot water can’t find gaps to run through and coffee spends a long time in extraction trying to find these gaps. 

From a ‘feel’ perspective, coffee that is ground too fine for AeroPress will make it difficult to push the plunger down. Your AeroPress should only require a moderate amount of pressure to push down – if you’re pushing a substantial amount of weight just to make the plunger move down, then there is a good chance that your coffee grounds are too fine.

Adjusting the grind size to something slightly coarser can resolve both of these issues and significantly improve your brew’s flavour profile.

Best Time to Grind Your Coffee for AeroPress

The best time to grind your coffee is right before you brew. Grinding immediately before you brew your AeroPress ensures that your coffee is as fresh as possible and provides the best possible flavour. Coffee will naturally lose its freshness and aromatics after its ground, so it’s always best to grind what you need and not let it sit for too long before brewing.  

Whether you opt for a handheld or machine grinder, investing in a coffee grinder is one of the best investments you can make for your coffee setup.

Ideal Ratio for AeroPress

The recommended ratio for AeroPress is 1:16 coffee to water. That means that for each 16Ml of water that you use in your brew, one gram of coffee is needed. Your AeroPress has a maximum capacity of 240mL, so you will want to use between 15-16g of coffee for a full brew.