Diy Coffee Filter - Brew Like A Pro With An Emergency Filter!

Diy Coffee Filter – Brew Like A Pro With An Emergency Filter!

Last updated on January 22nd, 2024 at 13:43

You will need a Diy coffee filter for those moments when you are completely out of proper paper coffee filters.

Thankfully you have many options that you can use. Keep reading while I dig down and talk about emergency coffee filter hacks!

Diy Coffee Filter – Emergency Coffee Filter Hacks!

When you wake up, get out of the shower, bright-eyed and bushy tailed and ready to face the word after you’ve had the morning coffee and find that you are clean out of filter papers.

Don’t let that inconvenience annoy you or get in your way or spoil the fine start to your day as there are many DIY coffee filter hacks that you can use in an emergency like this!

Use A Cheesecloth As A DIY Coffee Filter!

It is no secret that I love coffee and love experimenting with coffee in my quest for the ultimate cup of coffee.

Part of that involves me making my own plant and nut based milk, and thus the very reason why I have plenty of cheesecloth around.

The pore size of this fabric is notably larger than a paper coffee filter.

A huge plus point is that they are made of food-grade material and contain no toxic or harmful chemicals.

Using it as an emergency DIY coffee filter is easy and can be used for a variety of coffee makers and machines.

For most coffee machines it is a matter of cutting it to shape and using a twin ply or making two emergency coffee filters to compensate for the faster flow rate.

If you use a paper filter in your espresso machine, you can cut your cheesecloth to shape using your old paper filter as a template or use your portafilter.

Use the same method for your Aeropress, siphon coffee maker and your percolator too.

For your drip coffee machine and pour over coffee simply cut a piece of cloth that is twice as large as you need it to be, fold it in half and drape it around your filter basket or filter holder and add your coffee grounds.

With the pour over carefully and slowly pour your hot water. With your drip coffee maker, monitor your coffee compartment to ensure that it doesn’t flood due to using an alternative material than what it was designed for.

Diy Coffee Filter
Cheesecloth As A Diy Coffee Filter

Read: Can you substitute a paper towel for coffee filter?

Fine Mesh Sieve

A fine mesh sieve, like a cheese cloth, can be used for many different coffee brewing techniques and is popular with cold brew coffee and other full immersion brewing techniques.

You can try using a fine mesh sieve or a fines sifter that you use for baking.

This method is awkward for pour over coffee but is possible. You simply put a sieve over your coffee cup and add your coffee grounds and carefully pour your hot water.

It’s very so-so and imperfect depending on your own sieve and the sieve of the gaps. Your water may flow too quickly, resulting in too little contact between the ground coffee and your hot water.

A possible solution for this is to double brew your coffee.

A better method is to immerse your ground coffee in hot water and let it sit for 3 to 4 minutes and then use your sieve to filter out your coffee grounds.

Diy Coffee Filter For Coffee Maker – The Best Options!

It is in my humble opinion that the best DIY coffee filter for coffee maker is a cheesecloth. Better than a cheesecloth is not needing to use one in the first place due to proper management of your coffee filters.

That is only one way and technique that you can deploy. Personally, when I open my last box of coffee filters I order 3 more and repeat this cycle when I get to the last box again.

Another way to produce the best coffee from your drip coffee maker is to have both a permanent and semi-permanent coffee filter.

Permanent Coffee Filters

These are cheap to buy when you consider that they are a one-time purchase and will last you a lifetime. You will need one for different coffee brewing methods be it an Aeropress, pour over coffee or an automatic drip coffee.

Permanent coffee filters are made from a variety of metals with copper, cold, stainless steel and aluminum being popular choices.

Copper is what I consider to be the best due to ayurvedic traditions.

You will find them in all shapes, including flat-bottomed and conical. Circular ones are available too.

Emergency Coffee Filter Hacks
Copper Coffee Filter

Read: What can be used as a coffee filter?

Semi-Permanent Coffee Filters

As the name suggests, this type of filter will eventually need to be replaced. The average use is from 90 to 120 times.

Semi-permanent coffee filters are made from a wide range of materials with the best material in my experience being organic hemp and organic cotton.

Due to being made from fabric, they are a much better choice for the campsite and the great outdoors as there is no possibility of tearing.

These clothes come in all shapes that you’d expect, including the iconic and quite fantastic coffee sock shape.

Paper Towels

By far a paper towel is the most popular and most commonly used DIY coffee filter.


just because everyone else uses a paper towel as an emergency DIY coffee filter, it doesn’t mean that you should too.

Paper towels are chemically treated and bleached and may also have food dye or food coloring to make a patterned design on them.

All of which will make their way into your cup of coffee.

That, in my own opinion, is not a good idea, even though they are harmless for one-off use or two-time use.

They, the chemicals will affect the flavor of your coffee and unlike the use of a dish cloth or cloth napkin you cannot rinse them out.

If you have no other choice, simply cover your filter basket or coffee filter holder and line them with your paper towels.

Frequently Asked Questions About Diy Coffee Filter

What Can Be Used Instead Of A Coffee Filter?

Instead of a coffee filter you can use a paper towel, cheesecloth, reusable tea bag, cloth napkin, an old but clean dish towel.

Can You Make Filter Coffee Without A Filter?

Yes, when you have run out of traditional coffee filters and need to use a coffee filter substitute to make a cup of coffee you can use a double layered cheesecloth. Fix it over your coffee mug. Boil your water and let it cool down for 30 seconds. Pour your hot water over your coffee grounds and leave it to steep for 3 to 4 minutes until you get the strength and taste that you like and enjoy.

Your cheesecloth will act as a filter.

How Do You Make Coffee Without A Coffee Maker Filter?

 Boil your water in your saucepan. Let it cool for 30 seconds and add your coffee grounds and stir gently for a minute. Leave your coffee to extract for 3 to 4 minutes. While your coffee is extracting, place a cheesecloth over your coffee mug. Use a rubber band or paperclip to hold your cheesecloth in place. Pour your coffee through your cheesecloth filter.

Serve and enjoy your coffee!

How Do You Make A Temporary Coffee Filter?

There are many options and techniques that you can use as a temporary or emergency coffee filter substitute and brew a good cup of coffee with.

The best and easiest way is to use a reusable tea bag. It doesn’t matter if it is made of metal or cotton. Simply put your coffee grounds in and step your coffee in hot water and remove when you have the desired strength.

Read: Coffee filter substitute 

How Many Times Can You Reuse A Coffee Filter?

A coffee filter can be used multiple times before you discard it and throw it out and still get no noticeable loss in flavor or quality of your cup of coffee. The best judgement is the flavor of your coffee or the deterioration of your filter. I used mine 3 to 5 times but have heard other coffee lovers using them more.

Why Is Filter Coffee So Good?

Filter coffee is so good because the brewing method makes use of the constant flow of fresh hot water to extract the coffee. The technique gets more of the total dissolved solids into your coffee. Filter coffee, particularly pour over, is brilliant at getting the delicate and intricate complex flavors from yoru coffee beans that other brewing methods can’t.

Can You Use Paper Coffee Filters?

Yes, of course you can use paper coffee filters. They are the most commonly used type of coffee filter and with higher end espresso machines you can also use a special paper filter for espresso.

The coffee produced is sweeter, brighter and with a crisper taste.

Why Does Coffee Taste Better With A Paper Filter?

A coffee tastes better with a paper filter due to filtering out all the coffee oils leaving you with a crisp, clean and bright tasting cup of coffee.

Final Thoughts – Diy Coffee Filter

Now that you know what to use as a Diy coffee filter and have many options for what to use now to fix your current emergency. The key is to prevent that from happening again by being prepared in advance with some permanent and cloth coffee filters as well as good coffee filter management strategies.

Join our cool coffee community and tell us about your amazing and great DIY coffee filters that you use. Share your secrets with your fellow coffee lovers. Find us on Facebook/Meta.

Derek Marshall, a certified barista by the Specialty Coffee Association possesses over two decades of experience in specialty coffee shops. He holds professional certifications for coffee brewing and barista skills. Derek is also an author with authoritative books covering various coffee topics including specialty coffee, sustainability and coffee, coffee brewing, coffee recipes, coffee cocktails and books focusing on Brazilian coffee, Vietnamese coffee, Indonesian coffee and Malaysian coffee. As a barista for over two decades, Derek Marshall has worked in specialty coffee shops across the United Kingdom, Spain, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. His expertise extends to the distinct coffee cultures, specialty beverages, and brewing techniques of each nation. Functioning as a coffee consultant, Derek charges US$50 per hour. To learn more about Derek Marshall and Latte Love Brew, visit his About Me Page. For coffee inquiries, contact him at +34-639-410-375 or, mentioning your name and location

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