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Pour Over Coffee Maker vs French Press

Beth Huston Profile image

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Updated August 28, 2022

Comparing a pour-over coffee maker vs a French press is relatively easy. They’re comparable to coffee brewers that use a somewhat manual brewing method.


  • A French press is an immersion brewing method that steeps your coarse grounds of choice in hot water for a few minutes to extract tasty coffee.
  • A pour-over coffee maker is a manual process requiring a specific pouring technique with hot water into a mesh filter holding coffee grounds.
  • The French press delivers a strong brew while a pour-over model produces a lighter taste of coffee, but both are sure to please your taste buds.

Coffee enthusiasts have strong preferences, and they know exactly how their finished brew should taste. The best coffee maker should extract enough coffee oils from coffee beans to provide a rich taste you’ll love, whether you prefer a fuller flavor or more nuanced flavors.

Comparing Coffee Brewing Methods

There are several ways to compare pour-over and French-pressed coffee. The categories include complex flavors, brewing techniques, and more.

The method of brewing coffee you choose will determine how your mornings go from now on. Comparing other models, such as a percolator vs a French press for camping, will help you make a better decision.

Insider Tip

Using automatic coffee makers dramatically reduces the amount of time you spend trying to make your morning coffee brews.

Balanced Flavor for Your Morning Cup

Your morning cup of coffee should be a luxurious experience. French press coffee makers are fantastic for providing fuller flavor notes and a bold taste. If you like dark roast, you’ll love French press coffee. Pour-over coffee makers instead provide nuanced flavors, mimicking light roasts.

If you require bold coffee in the morning, then a French press is right up your alley. If you enjoy multiple light cups of coffee, then stick with the pour-over option. It’s all about your preference.

Having more information about coffee brewers is always a good thing. The next step is comparing a stainless steel vs an aluminum coffee maker or a stainless steel vs glass French press to get a better handle on the materials available, as well as the different types of coffee makers.

Type of Coffee Grounds and Grind Size

French press coffee requires a medium-coarse grind. For the pour-over method, stay away from a coarser grind and aim for something finely ground. One of the issues coffee lovers have with the French press method is creating gritty coffee. This is because of the immersion technique it uses.

On the other hand, the pour-over method requires hot water to be poured in a circular motion. This eliminates the chance of grit.

Brew Time Required for the Entire Process

The brewing process is pretty similar for both French press coffee and pour-over brewing methods. The most significant difference is that French press coffee uses an immersion technique with a high ratio of water to coffee, while the pour-over coffee method steeps with a high coffee-to-water ratio.

Because of this, they both take around four minutes to brew. This might be a little more for a stronger cup of coffee or shorter to provide a more subtle flavor.


There is a slight learning curve for the French Press, and it takes a while to perfect your technique.


How do I keep brewed coffee hot?

The most significant defense against accidentally ending up with a cold brew is to keep your coffee hot. A thermos or single carafe will work wonders to keep your coffee hot. Some models come with a hot plate that will also help maintain the temperature of your delicious coffee.

What type of coffee bean is best for a French press?

That depends entirely on your taste. The biggest difference between terrible coffee and smooth coffee is your brewing techniques. Just make sure the type of coffee bean you choose has the correct flavor profiles for your preferences.

How do I pour the water over coffee grounds?

The flow of water will greatly determine whether you have bitter coffee or a cup that even coffee experts would covet. Use a slow, circular motion when pouring water over ground coffee.

What type of coffee filters does a French press use?

French press systems use metal filters. This will typically be a stainless steel filter that features a metal mesh to catch small bits of coffee.

STAT: In 2019, around 4% of coffee drinkers surveyed used the French press system in the past day. (source)

Beth Huston Profile image