During the American Civil War, soldiers made coffee from whatever they could get their hands on peanuts, potato, chicory. It wasn’t always pleasant, but they craved that coffee taste so much that they were willing to settle for anything.
Thankfully, there are now easier and better ways to make a good cuppa.
Of course, one of the cheapest, quickest, and simplest ways is just by adding some instant coffee to a cup and pouring in some boiling water. But, what if you run out of instant coffee? Or perhaps you want to go up in quality, without having to fuss around?
Can you use ground coffee instead of instant coffee?
Yes, Ground coffee is just the beans that haven’t been brewed yet. This means, unlike instant coffee, it will not completely dissolve in water. Some of it will, the rest will sink to the bottom of the cup.
The particles that sink don’t taste very nice, so you might want to avoid drinking right to the bottom.
That said, there are some differences between instant and ground coffee that you might want to learn about before preparing your next cup.
Also, if you prefer a quickly made cup of coffee, I have listed some of the fasted methods to brew your java.
Okay, here goes…
Can You Drink Ground Coffee Without Filtering?
Yes, you can, but the grounds will sink to the bottom of the cup, and they can be quite bitter. If you don’t have a filter on hand, and you really want a cup of ground coffee instead of instant, maybe try straining it through a tea towel, or just don’t drink the grounds when you get to the bottom of the cup.
Instant Coffee vs Ground Coffee
So, what are some differences between instant and ground coffee? Well, there is the caffeine content. Ground coffee has just a little more caffeine than instant. Instant coffee contains roughly 30-90 mg, while ground coffee has 70-140 mg.
So, if you’re are after a stronger pick-me-up cup of java, ground coffee would be your best bet. But, if you’re looking to lower your caffeine intake, it would be better to go for a cup of instant coffee.
Another benefit of instant is its convenience. As I’ve already said, it dissolves in water, unlike ground coffee. It is quick and easy to make. You simply open a jar and take put a spoon or two in a cup, boil the kettle, and pour.
Instant coffee will also last longer: around two years, compared to ground coffee, which will only stay fresh for up to six months.
The downside to instant is in the quality. While it is quick and easy to make, it just doesn’t compare in quality to a good, properly made cup of ground coffee.
But what about price, you ask. Which is the least expensive? Well, instant coffee is slightly cheaper, but not by much. Generally, if you are buying a good brand, you will find that the prices aren’t that different.
However, for ground coffee made in a French press or percolator, you will have to use one or two extra spoons of coffee than you would for a cup of instant.
How to make instant coffee from ground coffee
Suppose you want to make your own instant coffee. To make instant coffee from ground coffee you are going to need the following items:
- a coffee grinder.
- A flour sifter.
- A large bowl.
First, add the coffee beans to the grinder. Grind the beans to the desired consistency. There should be different settings on the grinder. The coffee will turn into a fine powder. Then sift the powder through a flour sifter into a bowl. Yes. It is that easy!
But if you’re in a rush and would want to know some of the ways to brew a good cup of coffee without investing too much time. Keep reading…
Best fastest coffee brewing methods
You don’t have to pay a fortune for equipment or learn to become a world-class barista in order to quickly make a good cup of coffee. Let’s have a look at the different ways that you can make coffee that will impress your family and friends, without the need for a super robot of a coffee maker.
Drip coffee using a Coffee Cone
One of the oldest –and fastest ways to brew coffee is using a coffee cone. Coffee is poured into a plastic, glass, or steel cone. The cone contains a paper filter, which the coffee drips through into a cup or glass container.
Making a cup of coffee using a coffee cone will only take around 3 minutes. Which is only slightly longer than it takes you to boil a kettle and pour a cup. You can buy coffee cones fairly cheaply as well. You will need to pay extra for filters, which will need to be changed after every brew.
If you don’t want to have to pay extra money for filters, you might want to consider a French press. They sell for around the same price as a coffee cone. They are easy to clean. And they make a delicious and robust cup of coffee.
Coffee made in a French press takes just a minute or two longer than coffee made using a cone. You will also want to use coarser beans in a French Press.
Stovetop Moka Pot
This method takes a little longer than the others. A stovetop Moka will only cost between 20 and 60 dollars. You will need to brew the coffee over a stove. It takes a minute or two longer than the other methods.
However, the resulting coffee is stronger. It is great for making espresso-style coffees, or if you just like a stronger tasting brew.
Siphon coffee method
If you want to get fancy you can try making coffee in a siphon. Basically, a siphon is a little glass flask that acts as a vacuum (Example below is the Hario “Technica” Glass Syphon Coffee Maker I found on Amazon).
The way it works is basically this: Heated, pressurized water is sucked or siphoned out of a glass, brewing the coffee before gravity does its magic and the freshly brewed coffee is filtered back into the glass.
Siphons are very delicate, and they can be hard to clean. And though it makes a more refined coffee, a good one will definitely cost you more than a Moka pot, and it is the slowest process on this list. And you’re going to need to heat it over a butane burner.
So, if you are after convenience you might want to try one of the other options. But, if you want to show off your fancy coffee skills to family and friends, then a siphon might just be your thing! You can find a recommended one here.
On the other end of the coffee spectrum is cowboy coffee. It may not taste as good, and it may not be as fancy, but many people swear by it. If you’re out camping you might want to make a cup for yourself. So, what is cowboy coffee, and how do you make it?
Making cowboy coffee as a quick alternative
Good old cowboy coffee. Cowboys have been brewing their own quick and simple coffee on the trail for over a hundred years. It has similar versions around the world.
In Australia, there is billy coffee and billy tea, which is made in a metal container called a billy.
American cowboy coffee
American cowboy coffee is made in a kettle or metal pot. The process is similar to the way coffee is made in a French press, just without the filter.
Coffee is heated in water over a campfire. Then, when the grounds have settled, the resulting mixture is poured into a cup.
Cowboy coffee isn’t the best tasting coffee by accounts. But it is better than nothing. If you want to feel like a real cowboy, out on the plains at night, riding the trail, then you will want to try a cup of smoking hot cowboy coffee!
How to make cowboy coffee:
To make cowboy coffee just boil a kettle over the campfire until the water starts to boil. Next, remove the kettle from the heat and let it sit until it cools slightly.
Add two teaspoons of ground coffee to one cup of water. Stir. Let it sit a little longer. Stir once more, and then add a little cold water to settle the grounds.
Carefully pour the coffee into a cup, making sure to avoid getting too many grounds into the cup. Drink and enjoy!
You can live like you’re in your favorite John Wayne riding the high country by day, before settling down for the night by the campfire.
There is something nostalgic and pleasing about that outdoors smell. The smokiness of the wood-burning, the warmth of the campfire, the sounds of nature…
There you have it! Everything you wanted to know about ground coffee and instant coffee. I hope this answered some of your questions.
Which is better? Well, that all depends on your taste and preference. Some people can’t stand instant and only drink ground coffee. Others like the occasional cup of ground coffee from a café. It’s all up to you.
Maybe you prefer instant coffee for convenience. Instant coffee is quicker to make, you don’t have to fuss around with equipment, and there is less cleaning. But ground coffee, if made properly, is simply a better tasting, higher quality beverage.
If you liked this article, please share it with your coffee-loving friends and family. There are some great links in the article, with more information on different ways of brewing ground coffee, and some links to great coffee-related products.
Please feel free to leave some comments in the comments section. Thank you for reading. Now, I think it’s time for another cup of coffee.