Water to Coffee Ratio
Baristas and coffee brewing professionals often refer to recipes for brewing coffees in terms of ratio. For example: “I use X amount of coffee to X amount of water”. You may not have heard it explained in this manner, but essentially this is how the weight/amount of the coffee and amount of water are best described.
Ratios help “dial in” taste profiles.
Using a ratio helps provide a baseline reference when brewing coffee. It will also be helpful to think of the components of water and coffee as a ratio so you can “dial in” to your preferred taste profile.
It’s important to understand that no single ratio is the perfect formula. The ideal amount of coffee and water can fluctuate based not only on your preference, but also brewing device, coffee, extraction type, and post brew application (iced, etc.).
Our Mentor™ Coffee Brewing Scale and companion Mentor™ App are useful, precision tools when using ratios to establish brewing reference baselines.
A generally acceptable range of ratios is 1:15 – 1:18. This is a perfect place to start when exploring new coffees or brewing techniques.
Working with ratios will require the use of a scale. We offer the Motif™ Mentor™ Coffee Brewing Scale and companion app to guide you.
Coffee : Water
When working with ratios, it’s important to remember that you must use the same unit of measurement for both sides of the ratio. Typically, we like to work with grams, and since coffee is mostly water, the higher number is usually the amount of water (just in case you see recipes in the reverse). If you have 1g of coffee and 15g of water, the ratio is 1:15.
A Working Example
If 1g of coffee and 15g of water is a 1:15 ratio, how many grams of coffee do we need if we want to use 400g of water?
Start by using the information you have available, which in this circumstance is water. Now divide the water weight by the water’s portion of the ratio (15) to get the coffee mass. For this example, the math looks like 400÷15=26.67. Make it easy on yourself and round up: To achieve a 1:15 ratio, use 27 grams of coffee for 400 grams of water.
From here you can adjust as necessary based on the cup or taste profile you prefer. It’s fun to explore all the uniqueness and nuance that coffee presents, while developing a better understanding of what works best for your palate