This is my comparison of Chemex vs Aeropress coffee makers.
Coffee is the most widely consumed beverage in the world. And when it comes to brewing coffee, there are many different ways of making that perfect cup.
Which one should you choose? Read on to find out!
- What is an Aeropress coffee maker?
- What is Chemex Coffee Maker?
- How do they compare to each other?
- Chemex vs Aeropress: Caffeine content
- Chemex vs Aeropress: Which one will make a cup of coffee faster?
- Chemex vs Aeropress: Cleaning and maintenance
- Chemex vs Aeropress: Which one is easier to use
- Chemex vs Aeropress: Price comparison
- Chemex vs Aeropress: Grind
- Aeropress vs Chemex: Versatility
- Best Coffee Beans for Aeropress
- Best Coffee Beans for Chemex
- Benefits and drawbacks of both methods
- Which one should you choose?
What is an Aeropress coffee maker?
Aeropress is a type of brewing method / device that was invented in 2005 by Alan Adler. The coffee maker quickly became popular because it was easy and quick to use, and it made a tasty cup of coffee. The process involves pushing boiling water through ground coffee.
Aeropress is a coffee maker that uses a combination of pressure and gravity to produce a rich, smooth brew. It’s one of the most popular manual coffee makers on the market today because it has many benefits over other types of brewers. For instance, you can use it anywhere since it doesn’t require electricity or paper filters.
How to brew coffee with Aeropress?
The best way to make an espresso-sized cup is using this method: place one rounded scoop (or about 7 grams) of finely ground coffee in the bottom of the chamber, pour in enough near-boiling water so that all of the grounds are saturated, stir the coffee and water mixture with a bamboo paddle for about 10 seconds, insert the filter cap and place your cup or vessel on top of it.
Wet the rubber gasket on the underside of the plunger and attach it to the top of the chamber. Then flip over your entire apparatus so that it’s resting on top of your cup.
Press down slowly but firmly on the plunger, forcing hot water through the coffee and into the cup. Serve immediately or allow to cool for a few minutes before transferring to a carafe or serving directly from your Aeropress.
How Aeropress coffee tastes like?
Aeropress produces a strong but smooth-tasting brew. It has a deep and rich flavor that many baristas consider being better than traditional drip coffee.
When making Aeropress coffee, I normally get a nice, pleasing drink. Many people compare this to espresso and like its richness and low acidity.
What is Chemex Coffee Maker?
The Chemex brewer was invented in 1941 by Peter A. Schlumbohm, Ph.D. The device uses a pour-over method of brewing where hot water is poured over the top of the filter and coffee grounds. The resulting flavor has no sediment or oil.
How to brew coffee with Chemex?
Chemex is really easy to use: just add hot water, coffee powder and wait for 3-5 minutes until your delicious drink is ready! In my opinion, it can produce a really good cup of coffee when it comes to taste, plus it’s really easy to clean.
But how does Chemex work? Well, simply said, its design and materials allow water to flow in a slower way throughout the coffee powder in order for every flavor note to be extracted properly.
As you pour hot water into the brewer’s head, the water comes into contact with the coffee powder and starts to extract it.
The Chemex filter takes its name from its approximate resemblance in shape to a chemistry lab filter, and it’s designed so that there is no paper taste included in the taste of brewed coffee. So when you drink your cup of coffee using Chemex, you will be able to enjoy the full flavor notes and the purity of coffee.
How Chemex coffee tastes like?
Chemex coffee tastes best because it is brewed using a paper filter to remove the oils that impart bitterness.
The result is smoother, cleaner tasting coffee without the acidy aftertaste caused by other ways of brewing it.
This leads many people to drink their first cup of coffee made with this technique (and then never go back).
The secret to brewing correctly for this technique, though, is an understanding that the grounds should only ever be steeped for four minutes maximum—after which they’ll bloom into delightful flavors–or you risk sourness or an uneven-tasting brew.
Wondering what’s the best coffee for Chemex? Read my article where I picked 5 best coffees for Chemex out there
How do they compare to each other?
Both coffee brewers have their own strong points and both have a few cons as well.
The Aeropress maker is easier to use, but the Chemex brewer produces a less acidic cup.
The Aeropress is made of plastic, but the Chemex is made from borosilicate glass.
The biggest difference between them is how much water each uses in brewing a cup of coffee.
And it’s just the tip of the iceberg, there are a lot of other things to compare, so let’s get started!
Chemex vs Aeropress: Caffeine content
A 6-ounce cup of brewed Aeropress coffee contains anywhere from 110 milligrams to 140 milligrams, depending on the grind size and coffee beans used.
Chemex coffee on the other side contains much less caffeine than Aeropress coffee – around 70 milligrams, however, it’s worth noticing that it’s more caffeine than you can get from regular drip coffee, but less than you can get from french press or moka pot.
Chemex vs Aeropress: Which one will make a cup of coffee faster?
If you check Aeropress brew time you will see that it takes less than a minute to prepare a cup of coffee. If you have a high-quality coffee, a mug, a spoon, and a filter then you’re ready to go.
You can add hot water that is no more than 93 degrees Fahrenheit (the recommended temperature). We recommend using 34 grams of medium-ground Aeropress coffee.
The water should be added in circular motions before pressing down on the plunger for around 15 seconds. Then wait for the pressure to reduce and drink while it’s still warm!
A Chemex brewing time would be about 4 minutes. You can experiment with time and water temperature to achieve a preferred flavor profile.
Chemex vs Aeropress: Cleaning and maintenance
Aeropress does not require paper filters, so it’s easier to clean than many other machines.
The most common way to clean an Aeropress is to fill it with cold water, add a teaspoon of dish soap, and then use the plunger to push the water through the filter paper.
Afterward, rinse with fresh water and air dry.
I also found that boiling water then pouring it into the instrument works as well.
How often should you clean the Aeropress machine? Depending on the frequency of use, the user should clean the Aeropress at least once a month.
Like other glassware, the Chemex needs to be cleaned after every use. The inside of the cone should be soaked in warm water and scrubbed with a dish brush. The filter basket can be soaked in a solution of 1 part vinegar to 4 parts water for 30 minutes, then scrubbed clean.
It’s also okay to get the components in your dishwasher.
Chemex comes with a proprietary, bleached paper filter that is folded into a cone shape for use. The cone produces some sediment in every cup, so if you’re interested in avoiding this, it may be worth investing in a reusable stainless steel filter.
Chemex vs Aeropress: Which one is easier to use
I think that Aeropress is easier to use than Chemex for many reasons.
Aeropress is easier to use because it does not require paper filters and because it takes less time to clean.
Chemex requires paper filters, so there is more maintenance involved in terms of buying new filters. This can get costly over time if you typically drink a lot of coffee.
Chemex is also much more time-consuming to clean because you have to use a mixture of hot water and a mild soap or detergent. You then need to spend a fair amount of time rinsing the carafe under fresh water.
Chemex vs Aeropress: Price comparison
Aeropress is an affordable coffee maker and it is very often almost twice cheaper than Chemex. It’s also more convenient. It also takes less time to make coffee with an Aeropress than with a Chemex.
Chemex vs Aeropress: Grind
Aeropress makes coffee from a blend of medium-coarse ground coffee.
The recommended grind for Aeropress is what you would normally see on the coarse end of a medium-grind setting. If your grinder has no coarseness settings, check out this reference to find out how you can approximate the grind.
The coarser you go, the better it will be. This is because air shouldn’t have much contact time with the coffee allowing more of its oils to stay intact and do their good work on your tongue! Coarsely ground coffees also tend to result in less sediment at the bottom of your cup.
Coffee grinds work best with Chemex if they are of even size for optimum flow rate. You can use a slightly coarser grind for this brewer than you might with others, because of its larger filter.
Chemex filters are thicker than the competition, meaning better filtration = cleaner cup. This brewer has a graceful neck that prevents spillage when pouring water into it and makes for easy cleanup later on. Chemex carafe is simple to pour from as well – making this one of the most elegant (and easy) ways to make pour-over coffee.
Aeropress vs Chemex: Versatility
The Aeropress is versatile because you can use it to make espresso-type coffee, pour-over coffee, or even a cold brew. It’s perfect for traveling because it doesn’t need electricity or too much space! You can also use the Aeropress to make one cup instead of using a full pot of coffee.
The Aeropress is not just for coffee lovers either – you can also use it for tea, chai, iced drinks, and even more – it’s that versatile! You can use it to make one cup or you can use it for full pots of coffee.
Chemex is less versatile than the Aeropress because you can only make pour-over coffee with it. It is also much harder to take it for camping or travel.
Best Coffee Beans for Aeropress
If you prefer coffee that has a sweet taste and strong aroma, consider Volcanica Costa Rica Peaberry Coffee. Available in Arabica whole bean and pre-ground options, this is the best coffee to use with an AeroPress.
The flavor is spot on, and the sweet tones you get with every sip create a pleasant aftertaste. A coffee brewed with these beans will give you a popping flavor. Produced using rare peaberry beans, the coffee has an intense and bright aroma.
Want more interesting picks? Read my round-up review for the best coffee for Aeropress
Best Coffee Beans for Chemex
I can highly recommend Stumptown Coffee Roasters, French Roast. A bold, dark roast with a distinctive smokey flavor. Perfect for those who like their coffee on the darker side.
Benefits and drawbacks of both methods
Reasons to buy Aeropress:
- It comes at a very affordable price
- it is extremely fast to use, it takes less than 90 seconds to brew a coffee
- Aeropress is easy to clean
- Can be used with many different sources of coffee
- Small and lightweight for traveling or camping
- Aeropress has become popular for good reason. The internet is full of recipes that are designed specifically for this unique type of coffee maker, and people love to share their own recipes with the world.
Reasons not to buy Aeropress:
- Aeropress looks more like a science experiment than a regular coffee maker, and it can be quite intimidating to use for the first time.
- While the Aeropress looks cool, it is extremely easy to break. This means that you might end up spending more money on replacing this coffee maker than you would if you were to buy a simple machine that will not break as easily.
- Aeropress can be somewhat finicky when it comes to getting your brew just right. You have to press the water through the grounds at a specific speed in order for it to come out just right.
Reasons you should buy Chemex:
- It makes delicious coffee.
- It is easy to clean and care for.
- The glass filter allows you to watch the entire water-to-coffee process happen in real-time if that’s your thing.
Reasons not to buy Chemex:
- If you are forgetful or clumsy, you should probably use a different method.
- It is easy to break.
- You will need a separate grinder if you plan on using fresh beans.
Which one should you choose?
In the end, both devices make a great cup of coffee and use different coffee brewing methods. It can be difficult to choose between them.
The Chemex brewer makes a slightly better cup of coffee due to lower acidity levels, but that can be changed by using extra fine Aeropress filters if that is something you prefer.
If the Chemex brewer is too difficult to use or clean, try an Aeropress coffee maker instead.