The Best Stovetop Coffee You’ll Ever Make

Posted on Posted in Brew Guides, Coffee

The Stovetop Moka Pot is a challenging way to make delicious coffee. Unlike its close cousin the espresso machine, it brews hotter and at a lower pressure and speed, which can easily lead to bitterness. We’re not to be deterred however! Let’s make something beautiful with the stovetop.


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You’ll need:

A stovetop moka pot

Some delicious coffee

A kettle

A tea towel

A spoon




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First, boil some water in a kettle. We’d always recommend you use filtered water, so some from a Brita. Don’t worry if you haven’t got any. Leave the water to cool for about a minute.

In that minute, get your coffee ready. If you’ve got it from us ground, then great, nothing more to do here. If not, then grind it to medium-fine, similar to what you might use for an Aeropress.

(There’s some confusion about the similarity between a stovetop and an espresso machine. It’s important you don’t use a fine grind in a stovetop moka pot, as you would for an espresso machine. A fine grind works in espresso machines because of the high speed and pressure of coffee extraction. Because the stovetop is slower and applies less pressure during the extraction, a fine grind will lead to a sharp increase in bitterness.)


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Pour the water into the lower part of the stovetop moka pot up until the pressure valve and no higher.


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Fill your coffee basket with coffee and then level off the coffee grounds with your finger. You don’t need to press or pack the coffee down, let gravity do the work for you!


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Carefully drop the coffee basket into the lower part of the moka pot, ensuring there’s no coffee around the rim. Holding the base with something to protect your hand from the heat, screw on the top part of moka pot tightly. Place the pot on the stove onto a medium-high heat.


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Lift up the lid so that you can clearly see what’s going on. As a rule of thumb: it should take about a minute for the coffee to appear. Any longer than that you’re on too low a heat. A few seconds after the first bubbles appear and you hear the characteristic percolating sound, turn off the heat or remove the pot from the stove and wait until the coffee stops bubbling from the spout.

There are many kinds of moka pots, in all shapes and sizes, made of different materials and of varied quality. That’s not to mention the varying intensity of hobs. If you find that you’re getting too little coffee, leave the moka pot on the heat for a little longer. Experiment with timing until you get it right for you. Having done tests here at HQ, we’ve found that even if you get half the amount of coffee you expected, that half will be twice as strong as the whole, and taste roughly similar. The moka pot is a wondrous thing.


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You’re done! Pour the delicious liquid into two tiny cups and enjoy.

23 thoughts on “The Best Stovetop Coffee You’ll Ever Make

  1. Fill the coffee basket? Really? I don’t think I’ve ever put that much coffee into a pot of stovetop, I’d get through coffee at a phenomenal rate…

    1. Hey James! I guess everyone likes different strengths when they brew and makes coffee slightly differently. It’s just finding what suits you best!

  2. Hi have a stove top and cafetiere, I’ve tried the monte maria espresso in the cafetiere and it is awesome!!! I wanted to try it for my stove top but I have run out 🙁 and to make it worse you don’t have anymore either!!!
    You need to bring that one back in because that dark chocolate flavour to it is divine! I’ve just received my new pact coffee: Finca la Joyeria but although it also has hints of dark chocolate in it, it doesn’t win my heart and palate.

  3. Hey Karen. It’s great to hear how much you enjoyed the Monte Maria Espresso and we’re sorry it’s run out already. Our coffees normally change every couple of months as we source them from small scale farms. This means there is only so much coffee we can source from each one. If you haven’t already please mark it as liked on your history page. We regularly have coffees on our menu with dark chocolate tasting notes so please keep experimenting!

  4. I have always used cold water in my stove top and then left it on the heat until just before the water stops coming out. What difference will I find in flavour doing it the way in this article?
    I’m going to try it this way next time I make a pot.

    1. Hey Chris! So using hot water rather than cold, lessens the chance of scolding the coffee and it getting burnt, That sounds contradictory right? However using hot water helps speeds up the process, which means the stove top doesn’t spend as much time exposed to heat, which could lead to burnt coffee.

      Hope this helps!

  5. I was shown how to use my pot by an Italian lady and she insists on cold water, but although she makes beautiful coffee in hers, mine always tastes burnt, so I’m going to try it with hot water and just not tell her!

  6. I’ve also always used cold water, I’ll have to give it a go with boiled and see the difference. Also, I’ve never filled the coffee basket and always tamped it down……everyday so school day.

    1. Feel free to give a go and let us know what you think! At the end of the day this is just a guide and the most important thing is going to be your own personal taste!

  7. Once it’s on the hob, you should put it at full power with the lid open, so when it starts to come up to the upper chamber you should turn the heat almost all the way down and close the lid. This way, you prevent burning the coffee (as you boil the water as quick as possible, then allowing it to seep through).

  8. Hey, I love espresso always. And the moka pot is really a wondrous thing. I must try this following your process. And my experiment will be going on until i get it right for me. Off course i will share my experience with you after making my espresso coffee with using moka pot. Thanks for sharing such an informative post. Thanks Ignatius.

  9. I love my moka pot! I’ve used hot water in the past but then read that the Italian’s say to use cold water…being ever the conformist I changed to cold water. I fill my coffee basket to the top but then I use it to make double strength Americanos rather than drinking it as an espresso. Definitely beats my filter machine hands down when it comes to making a coffee that has a bit of a kick to it!! Not sure I should say but I’ll keep using the pot throughout the day even after its gone cold – just pour into a cup and add hot water to make an Americano and still delicious *anxiously awaits the wrath of the coffee connoisseurs!!*
    Such a shame that brewing coffee in this way could be a thing of the past soon if Bialetti doesn’t get more market share…coffee pods are so unsustainable in comparison…(and there are more coffee grounds for compost from a moka pot!!)
    Long Live the Moka Pot!!

  10. Stovetop Moka pot is also an alternative of espresso machine. I am also a user of this pot. I am happy with this. Your process will help me a lot.

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