Waking up only to find no coffee filters is very frustrating. The first thing in the day- most of us need is a freshly brewed cup of coffee to kick start our mornings. Having coffee, a coffee maker, hot water, but running out of filters can be seriously annoying. Below are some very useful life hacks for coffee filter substitutes.
One thing is common in all coffee filters and their substitutes: If you grasp this easy science – even you will be able to find substitutes for coffee filters yourself. Basically you need any porous material – that will allow the liquid to pass and prevent the coffee residue from passing through.
Here are some materials which act very similar to coffee filters.
5 Coffee filter substitutes for coffee emergencies
1. Paper Towels, Dishtowels or Napkins
A a roll of paper towel or a paper napkin works very similar to a coffee filter. Shape the paper towel or the Napkin to fit your coffee maker and you are done for the moment. Try using good quality napkins.
Low quality paper towels will affect the taste of your coffee and there is always a risk of paper chemicals permeating your coffee. Avoid using fabric materials too because coffee stains are not very easy to wash off.
Cheesecloth is the best of all coffee substitutes. Cheesecloth is loosely woven cotton fabric used to filter whey from cheese curds. It also holds the curd together while cheese is formed. There are different grades of cheesecloth – and the best for a coffee filter is the most fine one.
The grounds can travel if the permeability of the cloth is coarse. If you don’t have cheesecloth at your house – then consider keeping it – because it has many uses. You can use it to strain stocks and custards, to bundle herbs, in making tofu and ghee, and you can even thicken yogurt.
3. Wire Mesh Filter
Buy a metal filter the first thing after reading this post. Paper and cloth can only be used as a temporary substitute. A metal filter – is best for filtering coffee. It is specially designed to filter the most fine coffee grounds.
Secondly you get fresh and pure coffee – because papers and cloths grains also enter when you use them as filter substitutes. Wire mesh filters are reusable.
A good quality filter can last at least 5 years. And lastly modern wire mesh filters are made to fit most coffee makers. You can replace your coffee filter with a wire mesh filter and will get a snug fit.
4. Socks or Muslin
Yes, we’re serious! Your socks can be used as a coffee filter. Remember two three things if you are using your socks as filters.
- Do not ever use a used sock! (Of course you never will, but we want to caution you from picking up a dirty sock just after your night’s sleep)
- Avoid thin socks and go for thick ones. Thin socks have high permeability and hence don’t make good filters.
- Use colored socks and use both the pairs. So that even if they get stains – they have an even tone.
5. Tightly Sewn Cloth
Tightly sewn cloth can be a last minute resort. Use only the tightest fabric that you have if you don’t have any of the above. Generally cottons and silks are not sewn that tight – and will not help in preventing the grounds.
Go for polyester cloth if you can. Do not use a used cloth which can make your coffee dusty and unhygienic.
Having instant coffee sachets is always a good option for emergencies. You don’t need any coffee maker, nor any filters. And you can enjoy as much coffee as you want. Consider checking out our list of great tasting instant coffees.
Last update on 2019-11-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API