Different Ways to Prepare Your Espresso Without an Espresso Maker

You want an espresso, but it's not possible for you to leave your apartment. What do you do?

Surprisingly, there are number of ways you can craft a kinda-sorta espresso shot without once touching the lever of an espresso machine.

To help your experiments go smoothly, we recommend having the following tools in your 'laboratory' before starting:

1. An Electric Kettle with temperature control
2. A Conical Burr Grinder
3. A Scale with a timer
4. High quality coffee beans, preferably Clout Coffee

    Ah, the beloved Moka pot. The utility knife of coffee brewing. An espresso-like pour is created by this handy-dandy, teeny-tiny kettle that feels great and puts a little pep in your step. You'll get a taste that's neither coffee nor espresso, but nonetheless pleasing.

    What You'll Need:

    STEP 1:  
    Measure out about 2 tablespoons of Whole Bean Clout Coffee, or 20-22 grams. Grind your beans as finely as possible.

    STEP 2: Fill the bottom of the pot with 3 1/2 fluid ounces of water. Pour the coffee grounds into the built-in filter, shaking to settle the grounds. Attach the spouted top of the moka pot tightly and place it on a burner set to medium heat.

    STEP 3:
     In the upper level of the pot, wait until the coffee begins to expand and foam. The hot water will create the pressure that will produce a concentrated coffee and some foam. When the top is filled with coffee, pour into a demitasse and enjoy!


    With "press" in its name, the AeroPress is a perfect approximation of espresso. Even though the texture of an AeroPress "espresso" may be different from what you'd get with a fancy machine, the flavor and caffeine content match that of a machine espresso impressively.

    What You'll Need:

    STEP 1: Stack your AeroPress. In the drain cap, place a filter—if you can, use more than one so that the flow of water is slowed down. Rinse the filter lightly and place it inside the compartment of the press. Place the press on a stable cup or mug.

    STEP 2:  
      Grind the coffee beans until they are a fine, table salt-like consistency and prepare about 2 tablespoons. Drop them into the filter. In these makeshift sessions, adding more coffee than usual might work in your favor-it will result in a more concentrated shot.

    STEP 3: 
    Add approximately 3 ½ fluid ounces of water, heated to about 200 degrees. Stir with the coffee. Then, press down on the plunger—hard. It is important to remember that espresso depends on pressure! Transfer your espresso (or coffee shot) into a demitasse and enjoy!


    As one of the most common coffee materials, the French press will certainly produce a concentrated brew (if prepared correctly), but it should only be your last resort. The French press will get you there, but without the concentrated punch of the other two methods. This method also results in a smidge more oily coffee shot, and it also puts a few more steps between you and the caffeine.

    What You'll Need:

    STEP 1: On a fine setting, grind at least two tablespoons of Whole Bean Clout Coffee. To add some richness to your brew, you'll need more coffee than you might think because it won't be as frothy as with a Moka pot or AeroPress.

    STEP 2In your kettle, heat 1 cup of water to just below 200 degrees. Meanwhile, add the coffee grounds to the French press.

    STEP 3: Pour hot water over your coffee to release the flavor notes in it. Let the grounds soak for about 30 seconds.

    STEP 4: Pour the rest of the water over the grounds. Close the lid and let the coffee steep for approximately 4 minutes.

    STEP 5: Press the plunger down halfway using slow, steady pressure. As you raise it to the top, plunge it using even pressure all the way down. Pour into your favorite mug and enjoy!

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Carole Sprunk