Can you use Instant Coffee in a Coffee Maker? We all have those days when we wake up on the wrong side of the bed and start the day badly. These are the days when we need instant coffee just to get our fix without the frills. Make no mistake, instant coffee is great, but it’s not always the most gourmet choice.
You might think it would be a good idea to put instant coffee in your coffee maker to enhance the flavor a bit, but you definitely shouldn’t.
Instant coffee and ground coffee are completely different, and you don’t have to add instant coffee to your coffee maker. Putting instant coffee in your coffee machine clogs your machine and causes problems when you have to actually brew ground coffee.
Why you don’t need to put instant coffee in a coffee maker
Instant coffee is usually already brewed and all you need to do is add water. Instant coffee is just dried coffee and by adding hot water you should have a really great cup of coffee.
Fresh, quality coffee will always be better than coffee, but instant coffee is much more convenient.
Because instant coffee is only dried coffee, it will dissolve completely when hot water is added. Coffee makers are designed to brew ground coffee, so by slowly pouring hot water through instant coffee it will not mix with all of the instant coffee beans and may leave some in your mesh or paper filter. The instant coffee in the middle dissolves and lets the rest of the water flow through your filter without “brewing”.
- Instant coffee is made by freeze drying or spray drying
- Spray Dried Instant Coffee is made by spraying coffee into hot air at 480 degrees Fahrenheit which dries it instantly turning it into instant coffee crystals.
- Freeze-dried instant coffee is regular coffee that is cooked into an extract which is then cooled to freezing and then vacuum dried to turn into instant coffee powder.
Sometimes when you brew instant coffee you will have to stir it and you cannot do it in a coffee maker.
When using a coffee maker, it is always best to use freshly ground coffee beans. By using a coffee machine to brew your instant coffee, you won’t get better tasting coffee and it may actually taste worse.
The best way to make instant coffee without a coffee maker
It should be self-explanatory, but for those of us who think it’s a good idea to put instant coffee in a coffee maker, I’m going to walk you through the best way to make instant coffee.
Boil a kettle of freshly drawn water first and not already boiled water. A little known fact is that freshly drawn water tastes better than already boiled water. This is because there is more oxygen in fresh water.
Then distribute the water / coffee ratio you want to use. If you have a larger cup, you can change this ratio to suit you. I like to use 2g which equates to about a heaping teaspoon per 200ml of water, see image below for a 200ml glass of water.
Then pour the water over your instant coffee. One thing to note is that you don’t want to use boiling water. This is because the water can actually be too hot and can burn instant coffee. Ideally, you would want the water to be at 94 degrees Celsius, just before it boils. Simply turn off your pan when the water begins to boil a bit.
Finally, mix the water and instant coffee. Add milk, sugar, whipped cream or any toppings of your choice. Voila, that’s how we make instant coffee!
Why not put instant coffee in a French press
You could technically put instant coffee in a French press, but that wouldn’t make sense. French presses are made for ground coffee. When using the French press with instant coffee, the powder would dissolve, making the mesh filter unnecessary.
If you plan to brew multiple cups of instant coffee, it would be easier to use a coffee maker and use the above measurements to make a bigger coffee maker. You can even leave it on the heating element of your coffee machine, shhh, no one needs to know that! This is the only time you have to “make” instant coffee with a coffee machine.
However, if you have ground coffee at home, check out this article to learn how to make the perfect French press coffee.
Why you shouldn’t use instant coffee in a Keurig
So because Keurig coffee makers brew coffee so quickly and on demand, people think K-cups are made with instant coffee. This is in fact not the case.
Inside a K-cup is actually ground coffee which is sealed in the container. So if you have a reusable K-cup pod and are wondering if you can put instant coffee in, you can’t. It wouldn’t be able to dissolve the instant coffee inside the reusable K-cup pod and you would end up with a watery mess.
If you’re looking for some great K-cup flavors, we’ve got an article on my top 30 K-cup flavors. If you own a Keurig, don’t hesitate to go check it out, some choices might surprise you!
Instant coffee is a great option when we don’t want to go through the effort of brewing a cup of coffee with beans. However, you don’t have to think about it too much. Just adding the instant coffee to the water will do the trick. You will NOT need to put your instant coffee in any type of coffee maker to enhance the flavor!