The Ideal Amount of Grounds for French Press: How Many Grams to Use?

Randolf Fredric

Are you a coffee lover who just can’t start their day without a flavorful, aromatic cup of joe? If so, you’ve probably heard of the French press, a classic brewing method that’s known for its full-bodied and rich taste. But when it comes to making that perfect coffee in a French press, one common question that comes to mind is, “How many grams of coffee should I use?” Well, worry not, as we’re about to break it down for you in a simple and easy-to-understand way. So, sit back, relax, and let’s explore the world of French press coffee together.


Welcome to our comprehensive guide on how many grams to use for your French press! In this article, we will explore why the correct measurement of coffee grounds is essential for brewing the perfect cup of French press coffee. We’ll also provide detailed explanations on the recommended grams of coffee to use, along with helpful tips and a comparison table to assist you in finding the ideal ratio. Let’s dive in!

What is a French Press?

A French press, also known as a press pot or plunger pot, is a popular coffee brewing device that consists of a cylindrical carafe and a plunger with a mesh filter. It offers a simple and effective method of extracting the full flavor from coffee grounds, resulting in a rich and robust cup of coffee.

Why is the Measurement Important?

Measuring the right amount of coffee grounds is crucial in achieving the desired strength and taste in your French press brew. Using too few grounds can result in a weak and watery coffee, while using too many can lead to an overpowering and bitter brew. Finding the perfect balance requires precision and experimentation.

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How Many Grams to Use?

The recommended measurement for French press coffee is generally a ratio of 1:15 or 1:17, referring to 1 gram of coffee for every 15 or 17 grams of water, respectively. This ratio provides a balanced flavor profile and a satisfying coffee experience.

However, personal preferences may vary, and adjusting the grams of coffee can help tailor the strength to your liking. Here are some factors to consider when determining the ideal grams for your French press:

Coffee Bean Quality

The quality of the coffee beans plays a significant role in the extraction process. If you’re using freshly roasted specialty coffee with complex flavors, using a higher gram-to-water ratio, such as 1:15, can enhance the intensity of the flavors. On the other hand, for lower-quality or supermarket coffee, a higher water ratio like 1:17 may be more suitable to balance out any potential bitterness.

Grind Size

The grind size of your coffee also affects the extraction rate. For French press, a coarse grind is recommended to prevent fine particles from passing through the mesh filter. Finer grinds require less brewing time and may result in a stronger coffee, whereas coarser grinds need longer steeping periods to achieve optimal extraction. Adjusting the grams of coffee can help compensate for different grind sizes.

Desired Strength

Personal preference for coffee strength varies widely. If you prefer a bolder and more intense coffee, you may opt for a higher coffee-to-water ratio, such as 1:15. If you prefer a milder and lighter cup, a ratio of 1:17 might be more suitable. Experimentation and tasting different ratios will help you discover your ideal strength.

Tips for Measuring Coffee Grams

Now that we understand the importance of measuring coffee grams in a French press, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:

  1. Invest in a precise kitchen scale to accurately measure the grams of coffee. Using kitchen scales ensures consistency in every brew.
  2. Use freshly roasted whole coffee beans for the best flavor. Grinding the beans just before brewing also maximizes freshness.
  3. Experiment with different ratios and brewing times to find your preferred taste. Remember, brewing coffee is an art, and personal preferences vary.
  4. Record your brewing process and measurements to replicate successful brews in the future. This can be particularly useful if adjusting the grams of coffee.
  5. Consider the water temperature, as it also affects the extraction. The ideal range is between 195°F (90°C) and 205°F (96°C) for French press brewing.
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Advantages and Disadvantages of Different Grams

Let’s explore the advantages and disadvantages of using different grams in your French press:


– Using a higher gram-to-water ratio (1:15) can result in a stronger and bolder coffee with intensified flavors.

– Using a lower gram-to-water ratio (1:17) can produce a milder and more balanced cup of coffee.

– Experimenting with different ratios allows customization and helps discover personal preferences.


– Using too few grams can lead to a weak and diluted cup of coffee.

– Using too many grams can result in an overpowering and bitter brew.

– Finding the perfect balance requires experimentation and may involve wasting some coffee during the process.

Difference Between 1:15 and 1:17 Ratio

The main difference between a 1:15 and 1:17 ratio lies in the strength and intensity of the resulting coffee. A 1:15 ratio with a higher number of grams will yield a stronger and more robust cup, while a 1:17 ratio with fewer grams will produce a milder and lighter brew. The choice depends on your personal preference and the characteristics of the coffee beans you use.

Comparison Table: Grams of Coffee for French Press

Ratio Grams of Coffee Grams of Water Strength
1:15 20 grams 300 grams Strong
1:17 18 grams 306 grams Moderate
1:19 16 grams 304 grams Mild

Note: The values mentioned in the table are approximate, and you can adjust them to suit your taste preference.

Important Notes

It’s essential to use a coarse grind and carefully measure the grams of coffee to achieve the desired taste and strength in your French press brew. Remember to adjust the grams based on factors such as coffee bean quality and personal preference.


Mastering the art of brewing French press coffee requires precision in measuring the grams of coffee. Although the recommended ratios are often 1:15 or 1:17, feel free to experiment and adjust the grams to match your taste preferences. Understanding the factors that influence coffee extraction, such as bean quality and grind size, is key to achieving the perfect cup. Whether you prefer a strong, intense brew or a milder and balanced cup, finding the right grams for your French press will ensure a delightful coffee experience every time.

See also  The Perfect Steeping Time for French Press Coffee

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Question 1: Can I use any type of coffee beans for my French press?

Yes, you can use any type of coffee beans for your French press. However, it is important to note that the flavor profile may vary depending on the beans you choose. For a well-rounded and balanced taste, it is recommended to use freshly roasted whole beans. Experiment with different beans to find your preferred taste and aroma.

Question 2: How should I grind my coffee beans for French press?

For French press, it is best to use a coarse grind. This ensures that the coffee grounds are large enough to be filtered out easily, resulting in a smooth cup of coffee. If the grind is too fine, it may lead to over-extraction and a muddy texture. Invest in a good quality burr grinder and set it to a coarse setting for the optimal grind size.

Question 3: How many grams of coffee should I use per cup in a French press?

The general rule of thumb is to use a ratio of 1:15, which means 1 gram of coffee for every 15 grams of water. However, this can be adjusted according to personal preference. If you prefer a stronger cup, you can increase the amount of coffee to 1:12 or decrease it for a milder taste. It’s all about finding the perfect balance for your palate.

Question 4: Can I use pre-ground coffee for my French press?

While using pre-ground coffee is possible, it is not recommended for the best flavor and aroma. Pre-ground coffee tends to lose its freshness and flavor more quickly compared to whole beans. Grinding the beans just before brewing allows for a more flavorful and aromatic cup of coffee. If using pre-ground coffee is your only option, make sure to store it in an airtight container to preserve its freshness for as long as possible.

Question 5: How long should I steep the coffee in a French press?

The recommended steeping time for French press coffee is around 4 minutes. However, this can be adjusted based on personal preference. If you prefer a stronger cup, you can extend the steeping time up to 5 minutes. Remember to stir the coffee grounds gently after adding hot water to ensure even extraction. Once the desired steeping time is reached, slowly press the plunger down to separate the coffee grounds from the brewed coffee before serving.

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Randolf Fredric

Randolf Fredric

A young brewmaster of words, crafting captivating tales over coffee's rhythmic symphony, stirring minds with each blog post.


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