From Lattes to Cold Brew: How to Make Quicker Coffee at Home
Because the act of making coffee shouldn’t make you want to get back in to bed.
If you’re a caffeine addict (I am, too) who needs a dose in the morning in order to get your feet on the ground and your eyes fully open, you might be in need of a quicker coffee routine.
It took me months of working from home to commit to making my coffee instead of walking to the nearest shop for an oat cappuccino. The first step was investing in a coffee maker that made some I actually liked (thank you, Nespresso Vertuo espresso). The second was finding creamers and milk that stood up to a perfectly frothed oat beverage from a well-trained barista. For that, I can thank Oatly and an Amazon milk frother. Now, my perfect routine that keeps me feeling alive enough to open my laptop is consistent, easy, only takes two minutes every morning, and can basically be done with my eyes still closed (because they are closed).
My first cup of the day is usually an espresso that comes at the push of a button from my Nespresso machine, while my second cup is made via a mini French press coffee maker from Ikea that I take my time with. While we all can admire the intricacies that go into a single-origin, pour-over set-up or the delicate touch of placing a circular filter into an Aeropress, there are a handful of tools you can use to speed up the process of obtaining a freshly brewed cup of Joe (that tastes good, too).
From one-time-use pour-over kits and steeped coffee bags to bottles that make cold brew with little human interference needed, we’ve gathered everything you need to make your morning pick-me-up just a little bit quicker.
Check out these faster solutions—plus must-have accessories—for each type of coffee drink you might be craving.
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For Fans of Pour-Over Coffee
When I worked as a barista at one of Los Angeles’s most popular coffee shops, Go Get Em Tiger, I mastered the art of pour-over coffee. It involves a uniform grind, a perfectly scaled out amount of coffee, perfectly tempered water, a wooden spoon to stir, and, of course, a pour-over setup. That’s a lot to pull out of the cabinet first thing in the morning—and without a cup or two in your system already. Kuju Coffee is making it all the easier without a handful of utensils, tools, and scales. While you will still have to boil water (see below for an electric kettle that makes this a breeze), the rest is already taken care of. Simply open the single-serving pouch, anchor it onto your mug, and top it off with hot water until your mug is full.
An Electric Kettle You Won’t Mind Keeping on the Counter
With a kettle this pretty on your counter, you won’t even mind looking at it when it’s not in use. Plus, 1.5 liters of capacity makes it so you won’t have to bother with refilling every morning. Just flip the switch first thing after rolling out of bed and let the kettle do the rest. Bonus points to electric kettles for not waking everyone else up with a high-pitched scream to let you know it’s hot enough to brew with.
For Fans of a Good Old Black Cup of Coffee
If you’re looking for a cup of black coffee for a pick-me-up first thing in the morning, this simple machine from Nespresso is for you. You won’t have to wait for a whole pot to brew, or suffer through the dusty flavor profile of a mug of instant coffee any longer. With one button and a water tank that lasts you through a week’s worth of brews (so you can wait to fill it until Saturday when you can sleep in), you’ll have a cup of coffee with a foamy layer on top that rids you of the need for cream (not that we black-coffee drinkers would want cream anyhow).
Stock Up On Pods
Nespressos are amazing at making a great cup of coffee in a matter of moments, though nothing is worse than waking up and realizing you’re out of pods. It happens to the best of us: We don’t realize we’ve used the last one the morning prior, or we think there’s an extra box in a cabinet or pantry that is now nowhere to be found. Avoid this error by ordering in bulk and setting up an auto-delivery so you never have to worry about running low, or worse, running out. (Bonus: Nespresso has a recycling system for its pods.)
For Latte Lovers
This kit comes with an easy pour-over setup but with an added bonus of a pack of sweetened condensed milk to leave you with a creamy latte that only takes two steps and 90 seconds (all you need is hot water and a mug). While a classic latte consists of a freshly pulled shot of espresso and frothed milk poured on top, this one takes its inspiration from the traditional Vietnamese iced coffee. The classic drink blends sweetened condensed milk with super strong coffee to create a slightly sweet, totally strong latte that will help you power through those long mornings of meetings, tasks, or errands.
When Tea Isn’t Strong Enough, Steep Something Else
Sometimes it’s too much to even wait for a Nespresso machine or pop-up pour-over set to finish doing its thing. When you have a day like that (or if every day is like that), you will be pleased to find that there is a coffee version of tea bags that simply involves dropping the bag into hot water and—boom—freshly brewed coffee in your hands in an instant. The Bay Area-based company Mr. Espresso has mastered steeping your coffee in one simple step to maximum consistency each time. Throw one of these in your bag, pack them on a camping trip, or keep them in your car for any time a caffeine craving hits. All you’ll need is a cup of hot water and you can steep a cup of coffee at a moment’s notice.
For the Folks Who Only Consume Cold Brew
This easy-to-use cold brew coffee maker is perfect for iced coffee drinkers. While at one point you may have had a shelf in your fridge dedicated to cans of cold brews for quick consumption, this will save a lot of money, time, and fridge space. Just add ground coffee and water to the bottle and stick it in the fridge overnight. In the morning, all you’ll have to do is grab a glass of ice and the bottle will have done the rest for you. The ultrafine filter makes sure you don’t end up with any granules or bits of coffee in your glass. Just make sure you fill it back up after finishing the bottle or before bed so you don’t wake up without any cold brew to sip on.
Keep a Silicone Straw By Your Side
Whether it just makes you feel better to drink your cold brew out of a straw in the morning or you don’t want to hassle with paper straws out in the world, these silicone straws make for easy sipping. They come with cleaners and cases that can attach to your keychain, so whenever you need a straw you can have one by your side.
For Espresso Drinkers Who Take It Straight Up
Prefer to drink espresso first thing in the morning? I hear you (and me, too). When you need your fix but don’t want to take up extra counter space with a big machine (sorry, Nespresso) or can’t make it into the car and to the coffee shop to get your first shot of the day, try this handheld modern wonder. The Wacaco portable espresso maker has changed espresso as we know it, offering an easy way to pull shots that fits into your purse (or kitchen drawer). Simply add grounds to the coffee chamber and a shot’s worth of water, push one button, and watch in amazement as a fresh shot of espresso finds its way into your hands in seconds. If you don’t want to bother with ground coffee, you can also purchase an attachment that lets you pop in disposable pods for a faster brew.
Grind Your Coffee Beans at the Push of a Button
Getting a uniform grind shouldn’t require a ton of gadgets and gizmos. This grinder from Bodum and coffee connoisseur Emma Chamberlain grind your coffee beans with the push of a button. The clear lid allows you to see how fine your grind is without having to open it up, and the sharp blades create uniformity throughout the grinder.