Aeropress Vs Pour Over: Which Manual Coffee Brew Is Best?

The manual coffee brewing methods are enjoying a boom in popularity. As more people seek to step away from the ‘one push-button approach, they are turning to manual brewing to craft a perfect cup of coffee. But which method takes the top spot?  

In this article, we compare two of the best methods currently available – the AeroPress and Pour Over – and set out to answer one question: Which is the best method? 

The AeroPress is a coffee maker that uses air pressure to make coffee.

It's made up of two main parts: an airtight plunger and a cylinder chamber.

The coffee grounds are placed in the cylinder, and hot water is added. 

Next, the plunger is placed on top of the coffee grounds, creating a seal.

After your desired brewing time, the plunger is pushed down, forcing the hot water through the coffee grounds. 

Check out our favorite way to make a cup of coffee with an AeroPress. 

aeropress brewing coffee

It was invented in 2005 by Alan Adler, a retired Stanford engineering lecturer. The best thing about the AeroPress is that it’s easy to use, portable, and most of all, makes a great cup of coffee. 


Pros & Cons Of Using an AeroPress 

Benefits 

  • Highly portable - use it in the comfort of your kitchen or chuck it in your backpack for excellent coffee on the go. 
  • Great device for brewing single cups of highly flavorful coffee 
  • Easy to clean 
  • Much more compact than other coffee machines 
  • It's simple to use — no complicated parts 
  • Inexpensive 

Drawbacks 

  • Requires a bit of elbow grease for extraction 
  • Can only really be used for one cup at a time 
  • Takes some practice to get used to 
  • It's not for everyone — some people find the process too complicated/labor-intensive and prefer a simpler coffee maker 

Pour Over Coffee: How Does It Work? 

Pour over coffee is a method of making coffee in which hot water is poured over ground coffee in a cone-shaped filter. It’s a slower and more deliberate process than automatic drip coffee makers. The coffee in the filter is then filtered into a carafe. 

The pour over method of coffee brewing is a very special way of making coffee that originated in Japan. The pour over method of coffee brewing is a delicate process that requires the barista to pay close attention to the brewing parameters of each brew. 

The pour-over method is a simple, hands-on brewing process that allows you to control every element of your coffee: the temperature it’s brewed at, the water to coffee ratio used for the brew, and the length of the brew time. 

Check out the ultimate guide to brewing pour over coffee. 

black ceramic mug

Pros & Cons Of the Pour Over Method 

Benefits 

  • Much more affordable than an espresso machine 
  • You can control the brewing process, choosing your preferred level of acidity, how long you want to brew, etc. 
  • It's environmentally friendly — no plastic pods 
  • It's portable — you can take your pour over coffee maker with you on the go 
  • The routine and method of pour over coffee makes it a great way to start your day 

Drawbacks 

  • The equipment takes up more space than an AeroPress 
  • Requires a steady hand! 
  • It can be a bit finicky — you need to pour the water at just the right pace 
  • It's time-consuming 

AeroPress Vs Pour Over (Manual Brewing Differences) 

While both the AeroPress and Pour Over are manual brewing methods, here are some of the key differences between the two: 

Coffee Strength & Taste 

In general, we find that the AeroPress outputs a fuller-bodied coffee. Pour over, on the other hand, produces a lighter flavor. This is because the AeroPress uses pressure to extract a fuller flavor from the coffee bean. 

Brewing Time – Speed 

If you're looking for a quick cup of coffee, you can't beat the AeroPress. In around a minute, you can have a cup of steaming coffee ready for drinking, which is almost guaranteed to ease off those caffeine cravings. 

There is more of a spectacle around pour over, which is part of the appeal. While the process requires much more attention than the AeroPress, the process from start to finish should take less than five minutes. 

pouring coffee

Ease of Use 

There's no doubt about it - if simplicity is your motto, then you will be best served by an AeroPress. The easy-to-use plunge method combined with the portability and versatility of the AeroPress means you can create a stunning cup of coffee in just a few minutes. 

But as with most things in life, often the best things are worth taking their time over. The method of creating a pour-over cup of coffee requires time and patience, but it's worth it with a cup that will rival anything output by the AeroPress. 

Number of Servings 

AeroPress is a single-serve brewing method, typically creating a single cup of 200g coffee. Pour over, on the other hand, can be used to pour more than one cup of coffee at once, perfect for entertaining guests. 

Ease of Cleaning & Longer Lasting 

When it comes to cleaning, the AeroPress’s cylindrical plastic body and removable parts make cleaning a breeze. For that reason, it’s a great coffee accessory to take camping or hiking. 

The pour over method isn't as simple as adding ground coffee to boiling water, but it's still far from inconvenient. All you need are the right tools — and a few extra minutes of preparation. The result is a rich, flavorful cup of coffee. 

Purchase Price Range 

Both methods are incredibly affordable. While a standard AeroPress will cost you around $30, you’ll need to pick up some disposable filters to use (which will only set you back around $5 for a pack of 350). 

Assuming you already have a kettle, a V60 dripper and filters will set you back as little as $15. If price is a concern, pour over may be the more cost-effective method. 


People Also Ask (FAQs)

What is the best grind for aeropress? 

The correct grind size for your AeroPress is one that will allow water to pass through your coffee, but not too quickly. If the water passes through too quickly, your coffee will be weak and watery. If the water doesn't pass through quickly enough, your coffee will be too strong. 

The best grind for an AeroPress is somewhere in between a drip and a french press grind. If you use a drip grind, your coffee will come out too watery. If you use a french press grind, your coffee will have a lot of sediment in it. 

Does aeropress make real espresso? 

Well, it depends on how you define espresso. A lot of people think espresso is just a specific type of coffee that is brewed via a specific method. It’s actually a lot more complicated than that. Espresso is an extraction method, and it has a lot of variables. 

The AeroPress is a great way to make espresso at home, but it's not a real espresso maker. The reason for that is that the AeroPress uses air pressure to force water through a bed of coffee grounds rather than using pressure from the built-in boiler. 

Is pre-ground coffee good for pour over? 

Coffee aficionados will tell you that the only way to get the best flavor from your coffee is to grind it just before you brew it. But is pre-ground coffee really that bad? Pre-ground coffee is great for pour over. It’s just as good as freshly ground coffee. 

If you don't have the time or the patience to wait for your coffee to grind? Is pre-ground coffee ok for pour over? 

Does A pour over machine use more beans? 

The average coffee grounds used in the pour-over method of brewing is higher than those used in the espresso method. 

Blue Bottle Coffee suggests using 22g - 30g of beans per cup. The average espresso shot will use around 16 - 21g of beans per shot. 

How long should it take to make A pour-over coffee? 

From start to finish, it takes about four minutes to brew a single cup of pour-over coffee. 

If you grind the beans yourself, factor in an extra few minutes of prep time. 

How do french press machines compare with pour over and aeropress? 

If you’re looking for a coffee maker that can make a full batch of coffee in one go, then you should invest in a French press. Also known as a press pot, this coffee maker is made of a glass container and a lid with a plunger. The plunger uses a filter to separate the grounds and the liquid. 

A French press is the best option for hosting a group of friends, as it allows you to prepare multiple cups at once. That means your guests can get their coffee fix at the same time  — making your life and theirs a lot easier. 


Conclusion

So what will you decide? When it comes to AeroPress vs. Pour Over, it’s easy to see why coffee fans enjoy both of these methods. 

The AeroPress is a fast and easy way to make a good cup of coffee. It's also easy to clean up, which is a bonus. But the reason I prefer the pour over method because you have more control over the variables that go into making a great cup of coffee.