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What's the Perfect Coffee to Water Ratio?

Everyone has their preferences when it comes to coffee. Some people prefer drinks with espresso, some people love cold brew, others will only accept the finest of french press coffee or specialty coffee. If you're just looking to make the perfect cup of coffee at home, you probably want to know the right amount of coffee grounds and amount of water to add to get what is called the "golden ratio" — the perfect coffee to water ratio.

What's the Right Brew Ratio of Coffee and Water for Coffee?

Turns out, the National Coffee Association of the United States actually has a position on this topic, so it must be very important to get the right coffee and ounces of water ratio to get great coffee out of your brewing process.

The NCA's website states, "A general guideline is called the 'Golden Ratio' — one to two tablespoons of ground coffee for every six ounces of water." However, the site also says this comes down to individual taste. So if you know your cups of coffee need different ratios for you to consider it a good coffee drink, you can and should adjust accordingly.

The site also notes, "some water is lost to evaporation in certain brewing methods," so that's something to keep in mind when you're making pour-over coffee, grinding up your coffee beans for the perfect cup of Joe in the morning, or simply throwing everything together in a coffee maker to be ready before your morning commute.

Roasty Coffee even offers a coffee and water ratio calculator so you can figure out the perfect combo of teaspoons/tablespoons of coffee and hot water to get better coffee. It also offers a way to calculate if you're using cups or even grams of coffee, in case you're measuring those beans with a kitchen scale.

The NCA also advises that water temperature matters when brewing coffee, and says you need to "maintain a water temperature between 195 to 205 degrees Fahrenheit for optimal extraction." Sadly, "Colder water will result in flat, under-extracted coffee, while water that is too hot will also cause a loss of quality in the taste of the coffee."

Many coffee drinkers have their preferred brew method, but we hope this article helps if you just needed to know where to start.

Watch: Why You Should Add Baking Soda to Coffee