How to make espresso with a French Press and save pounds


There can’t be many of us who don’t have a French Press nestling in the kitchen cupboard. Many don’t see the light of day but maybe you use yours regularly. After all it’s quite satisfying to use a French Press or cafeteria to make the morning coffee. But you may not have thought about using it to make espresso. Which is a shame.

You can use your French Press to make espresso in just a few minutes and use the coffee as a base for cappuccino, latte, flat white together with the foam you whip up with a milk frother. Making espresso is an easy to follow five step method which will save you the expense of buying a barista coffee machine.

We explain elsewhere on this site how you can combine a French Press with a milk frother to save over £200 on buying an expensive coffee machine. You can read that article here.

But, let’s return to using your cafeteria to make your espresso.

How to make espresso with a French Press

Step 1 – Grind the beans

You can purchase ready ground coffee beans but grinding your own is always fun. You can get a decent electric grinder for less than £20 or you can go full on retro and use a hand grinder.

For espresso you need a fine ground and be sure to use a good quality bean. There is nothing worse than cheap coffee so buy the best quality beans you can. But do make sure you remember to adjust your grinder to a fine setting.

Step 2 – Heat your water

First of all fill the French Press with warm water. Leave it to warm for a couple of minutes. The warmer the Press the better the coffee will be. At the same time boil a kettle of water – this will be used for making the coffee.

Step 3 – Add the beans and water

At last the fun bit. Add your finely ground beans into the Press. Remember you’ll need at least twice the usual volume of coffee compared to when you use coarse ground beans. Add a very small amount of water and let the coffee begin to brew. Leave it a minute or two for the flavour to ferment.

Step 4 – Add the rest of the water

Pretty self explanatory. Once you’ve added the water give it a good stir and pop on the lid of the French Press. This will ensure the coffee remains hot. Leave the coffee for another minute or two.

Step 5 – Make your espresso

Push the lid of the French Press down very slowly.

That’s it. You’ve made espresso in your French Press.

Admittedly it may take a couple of attempts before you nail it but it’s worth persevering with to avoid having to shell out for an expensive coffee machine.

Must reads – Milk Frother vs French Press

How to froth milk without a milk frother

What can I do with my French Press espresso?

You can not either slug a shot on its own or use your freshly brewed espresso as the base for your cappuccino or any other frothy coffee.

The trick to making great frothy coffee with the help of your French Press is to make sure the espresso is ready at the same time as your frothed milk.

You can use any type of milk frother for this. If you’re not sure about frothers read this article in which we explain what a milk frother is and how you use it.

You can choose an automatic frother or a handheld one such as the Bonsenkitchen. The process of making a cappuccino for example is pretty straight forward.

1 – Prepare your espresso using the process we outlined above. At the same time begin frothing your milk.
2 – Pour your espresso into a cup.
3 – Add your warmed and frothed milk to the coffee.
4 – Top with the rich foam left in your frother.

latte or Cappuccino with frothy foam latte art

Remember a good cappuccino is made up of equal parts of:

  • Espresso.
  • Warm/steamed milk.
  • Rich creamy foam.

Which French Press should I buy?

As we mentioned at the top of the page most of us will have a French Press in the cupboard. But, in case you fancy a nice sparkling new one, and are in the mood to treat yourself, we’ve listed this week’s best sellers on Amazon.

You can see the top five sellers below though there are dozens of others on Amazon and your local supermarket will also stock them if you want to pick one up with your weekly shop.

You may also be interested in:  Buyers Guide    Frother Reviews    Veletiser Review    Milk Boss

French Press best sellers

SaleBestseller No. 1
BODUM Cafeteria 8 Cup French Press Coffee Maker, Black, 1.0 l, 34 oz
  • French press coffeemaker serves 8 cups
  • Made from heat resistant borosilicate glass
  • Stainless Steel Frame and filter parts
SaleBestseller No. 2
Cafe Du Chateau French Press Coffee Maker - Large 34 Oz Glass Carafe - Stainless Steel Coffee Presses with 4 Level Filter
  • ☕ 4 Level Filtration System: We created a 4 level system for our coffee press that keeps...
  • ☕ Stainless Steel French Press: The cornestone of our our coffee french press is the 304...
  • ☕ Heat Resistant Glass Carafe: The carafe in our coffee and tea press is made from...
SaleBestseller No. 3
TOPELEK 1000ML Cafetiere French Press Coffee Maker, Double Wall Tea Maker with Stainless steel, Measure Scoop, 2 Filter Screen for home and office
  • 3-Layered Filter & Double-wall construction: Cafetiere with fine-mesh filter, balance spring...
  • 8 Cups Large Capacity: 8 coffee cups or about 4 coffee mugs of the best tasting coffee. Volume...
  • 304 Grade Stainless Steel Material: Cafetiere use 304 grade stainless steel giving the french...
Bestseller No. 4
RAINBEAN French Press Coffee Maker, Quality Tea Maker, Perfect for Morning Coffee, Maximum Flavor Coffee Brewer with Stainless Steel Filter, 12 oz/ 350ml, Black
  • [Excellent Filtration System]Our Coffee French Press Maker uses a stainless steel mesh filter...
  • [Maximum Flavor]Our Travel Coffee Press can perfectly preserve the whole coffee bean oil & acid...
  • [First Cup of Coffee in Morning]It is very comfortable to hold and to pour your first cup of...
SaleBestseller No. 5
French Coffee Press, Black - 1000 ml/ 1 Liter/ 8 Cups (32 oz) Espresso and Tea Maker with Triple Filters, Stainless Steel Plunger and Heat Resistant Glass - by KICHLY
  • Brews 8 coffee cups or about 4 coffee mugs which is equal to 1000 ml; includes plastic...
  • Durable heat resistant borosilicate glass carafe beaker sits in stylish insulated plastic frame...
  • Easier to use than a drip coffeemaker; brews within minutes and no soggy filters to deal with


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