Tea and coffee lovers, are you curious about brewing tea using your coffee maker? It may seem unconventional, but with the right tips and techniques, you can create a delicious cup of tea using your coffee machine. However, not all coffee makers are suitable for brewing tea, so it’s important to check beforehand.
In this guide, we’ll explore the possibilities of brewing tea with a coffee maker and provide useful tips to help you achieve the perfect brew.
Ordinary Way To Brew Tea
Before pouring the tea leaves into your coffee machine, you should know how to make a cup of tea.
The common way to brew tea is using a traditional teapot or a teacup with a strainer. Brewing tea involves heating water to the appropriate temperature for the type of tea you’re making (usually between 160-205°F or 70-96°C) and steeping the tea leaves in hot water for a specific time.
The length of time that the tea leaves are steeped will vary depending on the type of tea. For example, herbal teas typically require the longest steeping time (around 5 to 7 minutes), black tea and oolong tea require 2 to 5 minutes, while green tea requires the shortest (around 1-3 minutes). Check this guide for the brew temp for each type of tea.
After steeping, the tea is ready to be poured and served. The strainer or infuser can remove loose tea leaves from the liquid, just like we remove the coffee grounds using a coffee filter.
Tea bags are more convenient, but many prefer loose-leaf tea over tea bags for better flavor.
What Type Of Coffee Makers Should Use To Brew Tea, And How?
Now that you know, brewing coffee is similar to making tea. Water temperature and brewing time are crucial aspects of the brewing process. As someone passionate about coffee, I can quickly think of various coffee brewing methods that would also be well-suited for brewing tea.
A French press is naturally a perfect tea maker. You have a cylindrical coffee pot for steeping tea, perfect for tea bags or loose-leaf tea. The fine mesh filter is designed to block ground coffee from getting into the cup, which can definitely do the job for tea leaves. You can control the steeping time as well.
When using a French press to brew hot tea, heat the water to the appropriate brewing temperature for the tea you’re making. Then, add the loose tea leaves or a tea bag to the pot, pour the hot water over them, and let them steep for the recommended time. After steeping, you press the plunger down, separating the tea leaves from the liquid. The liquid tea will now be ready to pour and serve.
To make your own iced tea with a French press, just steep for longer and use less water, then pour the hot tea over ice cubes in your serving cup.
- Allow for more control over the steeping process
- Tea leaves are easily separated from the water with the filter
- The immersion brewing method is best for brewing tea
- Finely ground tea leaves may get into the cup resulting in a muddy cup of tea
Hario Switch Or Clever Dripper
A Clever Dripper or Hario Switch are manual pour-over brewers similar to a French press but with a few key differences. This coffee maker is a hybrid between a pour-over and an immersion brewer. It has a valve on the bottom that allows you to control the brewing time by deciding when to release the coffee. In addition, the paper filter can block the fine tea leaves, which solves the problem of brewing tea with a French press.
To brew tea using a Clever Dripper or Hario Switch, place a filter paper into the brewer, weigh and pour the tea in, and add hot water. Let it steep for the required time, and release the freshly brewed tea into the cup.
- Clean cup of tea
- More control over the steeping time, water temperature
- Work well for both tea bags and loose tea
- Require paper filters
- Not everyone has one at home
Drip Coffee Maker
If you have a countertop coffee maker, you can also use it to brew tea, although they may not be the perfect electric tea makers.
Most drip coffee makers have a filter basket for storing ground coffee. Hot water drips from the showerhead and extracts the coffee flavor. The brewing process usually takes 6 minutes. However, since the tea bags or leaves are not immersed in hot water, the flavor of the tea may not be perfectly extracted, resulting in a watery cup of tea.
Additionally, not all drip coffee makers allow you to adjust the brew temperature. If you decide to give it a try, here are some tips.
Tips For Making Tea With A Drip Coffee Maker?
- Before brewing tea in your coffee maker, cleaning it thoroughly to remove any coffee residue is essential. Wipe the filter basket and coffee spout with a clean cloth, and then run a few rinsing cycles.
- Regarding the water ratio, keep in mind that many drip coffee makers measure in 5-ounce cups instead of the standard 8 ounces. To ensure a perfect cup of tea, use the correct cup size and the recommended amount of tea leaves or tea bags.
- If your coffee maker allows you to adjust the brewing temperature, select the appropriate temperature for the tea you’re brewing. Different types of tea have different recommended brewing temperatures.
- Many coffee makers have a stopper that allows you to pour a cup before brewing a full pot. Make use of this switch to control the steeping time for better flavor. This will help you to achieve the perfect balance of strength and aroma for your tea.
Even though the drip coffee maker is not perfect for making tea, there is one exception, the Ninja Coffee System. It is a unique coffee machine that has been designed to brew both tea and coffee. It features a specific brew basket for tea leaves. Their machines can also brew tea with the optimal water temperature and brewing time. As a result, you can make a traditional cup of tea with one touch.
- Convenient, brew coffee and tea with one touch
- Some models are designed for brewing coffee and tea
- No control over the brew time and temperature
- The leftover coffee residue may affect the tea flavor, need to clean before brewing tea
How About Other Coffee Makers?
Pour-over is similar to a drip coffee maker, and you don’t have control over the steeping time. Usually, it takes about 2 mins to brew a cup of pour-over, which is too short for extracting tea. An espresso machine brews coffee with high pressure. However, loose-leaf tea or tea bags can’t create the required resistance to create the necessary pressure. As a result, water will pass through in about 30 seconds, resulting in a weak cup of tea.
When making iced tea, you can try cold brewing. Let the tea steep in cold water instead of boiling water overnight. You will have a sweeter cup of tea without a bitter taste.
Should You Use Loose Tea leaves Or Tea Bags?
You can use tea bags or loose tea leaves when brewing tea with a coffee maker. The choice between the two will depend on your preference and the coffee maker you use.
Using tea bags is convenient as they don’t require an infuser or strainer. Add the tea bag to your coffee maker and let it steep for the appropriate time. However, tea bags are often made from lower-quality tea leaves. You can design how many tea bags to use for each brew.
On the other hand, loose tea leaves are made from higher-quality tea leaves. Generally, they have a more pronounced flavor and complexity than tea made from tea bags. However, brewing loose tea leaves with a coffee maker can be more involved, as you will need an infuser or a strainer to hold the leaves while they steep and serve. Also, loose tea leaves can make the cleaning process a bit more complicated.
Loose tea leaves are a great option if you’re using a coffee maker with a built-in infuser or fine coffee filters. French Press and Clever Dripper we mentioned above are great for brewing loose tea. However, tea bags may be a better choice if you prefer convenience or don’t want extra time cleaning up.
In conclusion, making tea with a coffee maker can be a convenient and efficient way to enjoy a perfectly brewed cup of tea.
Some coffee makers, such as French press and Clever Dripper, are great for making tea. If you have one in your kitchen, you don’t need to buy an extra electric tea maker or tea kettle.
We hope this article has provided you with valuable information and inspiration to experiment with making tea using a coffee maker. If you haven’t tried it yet, we encourage you to try it. Whether you’re a tea lover or a coffee enthusiast, brewing tea with a coffee maker is a great alternative to traditional methods. It can be a fun and creative way to enjoy your tea.