Brew U: How to Make Perfect Drip Coffee


There are so many drip brew machines, and they all brew differently so you can produce your own personal cup of "daily ambition" (our latest phrase for coffee.) To make great coffee using the drip method, also known as the "Mr. Coffee" method, start with ratios. We recommend a 1:15 ratio of coffee to water. For example, a 10-cup pot of drip-brewed coffee requires 10 cups or 1,700 grams of water. So, weigh out 115 grams of finely ground coffee. That's about 2/3 of a cup.

However, if you prefer your coffee to be stronger, use a 1:14 ratio. Generally, most people prefer a drip brew made using a 1:14-1:20 ratio, depending on how strong you like your coffee. 

With drip brew machines, things become subjective and partially fun because they allow you to explore what you enjoy and don’t. For example, let’s say we’re thinking about a bean with smoky baker chocolate notes, which points directly to our Starbarn. Once you have your beans perfectly ground (medium), think about how the brew strength or ratio (coffee to water) affects the end product. For us, a 1:15 coffee to water produces a pretty potent brew for a dark roast like Starbarn, but it's just about perfect for our milder Lancaster Signature blend.

We know from my experience that many people scoop their ground coffee into their paper filter for their drip brewing and simply follow their own measure to however many scoops of coffee they find appropriate and pleasing. It might make sense for you to experiment to find that exact methodology, given the standards to arrive at your own personal sweet spot for the perfect cup of Lancaster County Coffee Roasters coffee.


The grind is an important part of a perfect drip brew. If you're grinding your own beans, you want your grind setting to be a medium grind. Medium is a vague term, so imagine the visual of coarse sand - not fine, but without distinct chunks.

Getting the grind right means the water flows through the coffee grounds at a rate that provides balanced extraction. In other words, the size of the grind allows the water passing through to pick up the flavors and aromas of the beans at an optimal level.

Make sure your machine is spotless. Any residual oils or grinds can make your coffee bitter. So, scrupulously clean the pot, basket, and any removable parts as needed. (Check your machine's recommendations. Many parts are not dishwasher safe.) And be sure to rinse thoroughly after cleaning to remove every bit of dish soap.

Next, place a coffee filter in the basket of the drip machine. Make sure it fits snugly and has no creases or folds that allow grounds to pass through. Add your medium-ground coffee.

Finally, fill the coffee maker's reservoir with fresh, cold water. Remember that the quality and purity of your water will affect the taste of your coffee. We recommend using distilled or filtered water.


With drip machines, this is the easy part. Program your machine or push a button, and then sit back and watch your drip machine do all the work.

Written by Lancaster County Coffee

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