October 15, 2017 3 min read

How to Make Espresso at Home—Part 2

Making an espresso is one thing, producing a perfect drink is another. While making a perfect espresso may look easy, it is really not as easy as it appears. There are lots of factors that play a huge role in determining the quality of your espresso, ranging from temperature to the amount of ground beans. All of these elements need attention or you could be in danger of producing a bitter, undrinkable shot instead of producing an espresso that puts a smile on your face.

Practice, as an old adage says, makes perfect. While you could attain perfection by consistently trying out different approaches until you get it right, it is best to follow these simple, practical tips as it would help you attain perfection sooner. Our suggestions are a good place to start, but feel free to experiment to make your espresso shot especially tailored to your palate. Yes, you can make a perfect espresso in the comfort of your home.

How to use an Espresso Machine

If you have your own espresso machine, you are really lucky as producing quality espresso would be a lot easier for you. Here are the instructions and guide that would help you produce a perfect espresso using an espresso machine.

  • Just before you go on to brew, grind your beans. To get a perfect espresso, it would be ideal to select a fine grind setting. Using the same setting as you would normally use for brewed coffee would make your produce much coarser than you would desire.
  • Pour cold water into the water chamber of your espresso machine. It is recommended that you use one tablespoon of ground beans for every ounce of water while making espresso. Anything less than this will throw your espresso shot off!
  • Ensure you pack the ground coffee uniformly into the coffee basket and make sure the top is level to avoid any overflow. When you are done with this, use a tamper to press the coffee to ensure there is an even distributiaon of the beans in the basket.
  • Allow your espresso machine do its magic. Once you notice the “crema” or foam at the top of your espresso has more of a white look than brown, your coffee is ready. Take your cup out and savor your perfect product.

How to Use a Stovetop Moka Pot

If you cannot afford a pricey espresso machine, there is still no cause for fear. You can still make a perfect, tasty espresso using a stovetop moka pot. The stovetop moka pot makes use of steam to pressurize hot water in order to allow it to pass through your coffee beans, and produce a perfect shot if done properly. Here are instructions on how to use a stovetop moka pot to produce that perfect shot of espresso.

  • As you would do for an espresso machine, you would have to grind your beans before brewing. For the espresso coffee, use a course or standard drip "drip" grind. If it's too fine it will clog your moka pot.
  • Pour hot water into your pot until it reaches the fill line. If your moka pot does not have a fill line, ensure you do not pour water past the steam valve.
  • Put the espresso coffee basket in the moka pot, fill it uniformly with coffee grounds until it reaches about three-quarters full. Do not tamp, level off the grounds with your finger as they would need room to spread out when it starts getting damp. Remove any grounds from the lip to ensure a good seal.
  • Ensure you screw the top of the pot tightly. You could use a towel to make sure it is very tight.
  • Place the stovetop moka pot on medium heat. High heat could make the coffee boil, and this will produce a bitter taste. If you hear a spurring or sputtering, then it is too hot. If you hear this remove from heat immediately.
  • It should gently flow out. At the end when it sputters, then remove from heat and place on heat proof surface. Enjoy!


Although you could still make a decent espresso using other means such as the French Press and Aeropress, the product may not be as you desire. Espresso is best served hot, fresh, free from particles, and tasty. You can make really strong espresso coffee so long as you follow proper steps – and yes, you can do this from home.