There are lots of ways to make good coffee. One of the most interesting ways to make a Bulletproof coffee is using an AeroPress coffee maker.
Fans of top quality third wave, specialty coffees, like Bulletproof® coffee beans, enjoy brewing their coffee grinds in a variety of different ways. Think of them as coffee hackers 🙂
This is one of the best things about being a serious coffee lover. That is, the fact that you get to choose and play with loads of awesome coffee making equipment. This can turn a bland home kitchen into a professional barista coffee station setup – no problem.
The primary recommended brewing method, mentioned by Dave Asprey, for making coffee blended with butter and MCT oil is what is called the French Press Method. However, in this Facebook fan club page poll, people mentioned how they like to use other types of brewing appliances, like the AeroPress® coffee & espresso maker from Aerobie®.
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We can all say a big thank-you to a man called, Alan Adler. He is the genius behind this new age coffee maker invention.(1)
The short story behind the history of the device is, he was inspired to find a solution to the difficulty in making a good cup of single brewed coffee. This was back in 2003, and with lots of testing and 30 prototypes later he was able to reveal to the world his new invention. It was at the Coffee Fest Seattle in November 2005 that the first version of the AeroPress device was displayed to the coffee industry.(2)
World AeroPress Championship
Since then its popularity amongst both home users and professionals baristas has blossomed.
In 2008 Tim Wendelboe and Tim Varney, both coffee experts and fans of the device, thought of the idea for a friendly competition. It is said that they were trying out various ways of using the AeroPress at Wendelboe’s Oslo microroastery in Norway. This lead to the first ever World AeroPress Championship (WAC) competition back in 2008 that was held in Norway. The first ever winner was Anders Valde from Norway.(3)
This is a fan-organized competition in which the competing baristas vie to see who can brew the best tasting cup of coffee using only an AeroPress coffee maker. For more information on where the next event is being held, list of champions, recipes they used and tournament rules and entry information check out the official website worldaeropresschampionship.com
It is amazing to watch how much detail a competing barista at the competition will go into. See them in action at the 2013 AeroPress Championship held in Ireland. (Fun Fact: Jeff Verellen, from Belgium, is the only 2 time champion winning both the 2011 and 2013 championships.)
How Does It Work?
It works like a French Press, where you will immerse the ground coffee into boiled water, let it steep for a period of time and then use pressure to make the end product – brewed coffee.
Here are some notable differences though:
- The filter on French Press is on the top whereas AeroPress it is on the bottom.
- You cannot use a paper filter with a French Press
- French press needs a medium coarse grind only. An AeroPress can use course or finely ground coffee.
- Fine grind coffee has a bigger surface area so requires less brewing time. Just like an espresso machine grind. Therefore, the brew time with an AeroPress can be much quicker (30 seconds) than the 4 minutes with a French Press.
- A French Press uses a mesh filter which allows small particles to still pass through after plunging. This can create a bitter taste as these coffee particles will keep steeping and extracting flavor into the brew.
- French Press is harder to clean. The coffee puck left over with an AeroPress is easy to dispose of by just pushing it down into the bin with the plunger. No scooping wet, mucky spent grinds out with a spoon or your fingers.
- Gentle pressure is needed with a French Press. Pressure needed with an AeroPress can range from 0.35 bar (5.1 psi) with normal, firm pressing to 0.70 bar (10.2 psi) with hard pressing. An espresso machine generates 9 bar (130.5 psi) of pressure.
- An AeroPress can be used to make any espresso based drink, americano, latte or cappuccino. A French Press cannot make espresso type drinks.
- An AeroPress has much less acidity at 1/9th the level vs a French Press brewed coffee. This means an AeroPress is more likely to be kinder on your stomach and cause less tummy problems that some people get when drinking coffee.
- The AeroPress is very portable and backpacker friendly. Use it when you go on holiday, camping, travelling on a plane, long distance car journey etc…
How to Use an AeroPress Coffee Maker
The instructions that come when you buy your own show that there are two recommended ways to make a coffee: the traditional way & the inverted way. It would seem, in the barista world where they compete against each other the inverted technique is the favorite method.
One of the best features of the AeroPress is its hackability. Since You don’t need to stick the the rules and can change tons of things to how you want. Perfect for experimenting.
Users get to select many important variables like: water temperature, steeping time, coffee to water ratio, etc. The AeroPress is a tool that gives a user way more control of the brewing process variables. Thereby, allowing a user to brew with any desired brewing recipe. This is why it is such a perfect device to use as a game to see who can do what with it.
Beginners Level Tutorial
Here are two nice overviews of the inverted method using a metal filter.
The basic recipe used in the video was:
- 18 grams of coffee
- Coffee grind set for paper filters (medium to fine size)
- 230ml boiled water
- Let the coffee bloom
- Brew for a further 2 minutes
- Place the metal filter in the top, screw on, and firmly plunge the coffee into a cup.
Bonus Tip: The recommended water temperature to use is lower than what you might normally use. For medium to dark roasts use 175°F or 80°C. For light roasts use 185°F or 85°C. Just another reason why this temp control Bonavita Kettle makes life so much easier.
In the next video you will see how to use it specifically for when you are going Bulletproof. The butter brand mentioned is from Australia & is called Westgold butter. Maybe in the future you’ll see some unsalted Kerrygold or Anchor butters in the mix.
Scientific Level Tutorial
In this video watch how scientific some people take things when trying to make the perfect cup of joe. This is just incredible when looking at as many fine details that you can try control and make perfect.
Please note this is definitely not a common way of brewing coffee. Only very few people will ever do this in their lives. Who do you know who has a custom-made wooden brew bar powered by gas struts (car boot lifter)? It is just some fun to watch and appreciate how hard it can be to get the prefect pressure.
- Caffeine or Decaf – You can use either Bulletproof caffeinated or Bulletproof decaf coffee beans in the recipe.
- Whole or Ground Coffee – Then it also depends if you like grinding your own whole beans or prefer using ground coffee instead.
- Roast Strength – Final choice is light, medium or dark roast. The preferred choice is either the original medium roast beans or the two new dark roast options called The Mentalist or French Kick.
You can see the full range of types of beans to choose from here. This is really just a personal preference as to what you prefer in taste or storage.
Now, if you do your own online research, this is by no means the only AeroPress inverted recipe. You can check out the World AeroPress Championships recipes, for all the AeroPress recipes used by baristas around the world.
The original AeroPress design was more transparent and made from a polycarbonate. In July 2014 the company switched from coployester to making the chamber and plunger out of recyclable polypropylene, which also provides the darker appearance. To see which version you have you can use this image below as a reference.
- It is free from BPA and phthalates since 2009 products sold.
- The seal is made from medical grade thermoplastic elastomer (styrene-ethylene-butadiene-styrene). The same used for medical syringes.
- It is FDA and EU approved for use in contact with food.
- No plans to make a stainless steel or glass version.
Paper vs Metal FiltersHaving mentioned already how cool it is that you can hack how you brew your coffee using this state of the art looking coffee plunger, there is more.
Other inventors have built and designed add-ons to use with it. This includes reusable, stainless steel filters and even the Able Brewing Travel Cap, which are both third party manufactured and not made by Aerobie. There are said to be no plans for an official metal filter either so you would need to purchase one of these other brands filters.
Pros and Cons
Like everything in life there might be good and bad reasons to do something. Now, here is the important question.
You might be thinking: “Why start using a stainless steel filter instead of staying with the original paper filters provided?”. I mean, they give you 350 paper filters to get started with you when you buy your first AeroPress. Well, there is a good answer for converting over to a metal version.
In the original Bulletproof® Coffee recipe, Dave has mentioned, how you should to try avoid using a paper filter when making coffee, as you lose some of the health benefits, such as the coffee oils. So the primary reason is that you want to protect the delicate and amazing oils that is released when you brew coffee grinds.
Some people would advise you that you want to catch these tasty oils in a paper filter for cardiovascular health. This is in order to help reduce your risk of raising your LDL cholesterol when you drink lots of coffee. It is the diterpenes (cafestol and kahweol) in unfiltered coffee they are talking about. Yes, it is true that paper filters help to remove diterpenes from coffee.(4)(5)
However, here is the twist. The question is that once you start following the Bulletproof diet and learn about the LCHF diet or ketogenic diet research, will you worry so much about cholesterol? When you learn more about why we need cholesterol to be able to live and how eating a low fat diet is not ideal and instead a more low carb high fat diet is important for our health.
From a taste benefit point that is up to you. Since taste buds are so different deciding which one to use for improved taste is hard to be definitive. If you are serous about using an AeroPress you will want to try both paper and metal filters out at some stage. This will help you decide which one produces the best flavor for you.
Which Metal Filter to Buy?
Doing some online research, there are two companies who make metal filters for the AeroPress.
The two main, stainless steel filters for the AeroPress are:
Able Brewing DISK Filter
It can be hard to decide which one to go with so it is recommended to get the combination pack that includes one of each for you to try. These are made of stainless steel, are washable under a tap or dishwasher and so are reusable as many times as you would like.
Kaffeologie S Filter
It is made in the USA from 100% stainless steel. There can be an issue when trying to fit the filter into the lid and use it for the first time. Kaffeologie has a video showing how, it looks like, to stretch the AeroPress filter cap to be able to fit, using their product which you can watch here.
Please Note: Neither of these products are endorsed by Dave Asprey or Aerobie. This is additional information for Bulletproof fans, wanting a paperless experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some questions and answers we found that we think would be useful to know.
- Q: Can I clean it in the dishwasher?
A: Yes, however simple rinse under the tap would normally do.
- Q: What is the purpose of the stirrer and funnel?
A: The stirrer is to mix the grinds into the poured water to make sure all are soaked. The funnel is to transfer grinds from your grinder into the chamber. Some people use it to press into smaller cups or even a travel mug.
- Q: Is there more caffeine in AeroPress made coffee?
A: No it is comparable to other methods caffeine levels.
- Q: Can I make tea in it?
A: Yes, brew loose tea leafs and plunge as normal.
So, it would seem that it is possible to try make Bulletproof Coffee with an AeroPress coffee plunger, using paperless filters. Being a fellow coffee lover I’m sure you appreciate the option. Happy brewing 🙂
Please feel free to Pin This to a coffee ideas board- We would appreciate it 🙂