What is the Correct Moka Pot Grind Size?

What is a Moka Pot?

A Moka pot is an aluminum stovetop espresso maker that uses steam pressure to brew coffee. As these pots brew coffee rich in taste, you need to pay attention to your Moka pot grind size for a perfect cup. That’s where the secret lies.

Although the Moka pot might not produce true espresso, it can brew a strong, tasteful, quality coffee cup. Keep reading to find out more about Moka pots.

Moka pot coffee

How to Use a Moka Pot

Most of the time, we frequently fail to slow down enough from our busy lifestyles and enjoy the voyage. While a drip machine is useful when you need to go out quickly, using a Moka pot forces you to take time and appreciate a quality cup of coffee.

Pot Assembly

The Moka pot has a water chamber at the bottom. It has a safety valve to prevent the buildup of excess pressure inside the pot. A funnel attached to the coffee basket slides into the lower chamber. 

A filter plate and gasket will sit between the bottom and top chambers to keep coffee grounds out of your final cup of coffee. Cover the top compartment with its handle and tighten it to complete the assembly.

Setting it Up

Fill the bottom compartment of your Moka pot with water up to the safety valve before brewing coffee in it. Next, fill the filter basket with your freshly ground coffee. Up until it slightly protrudes above the filter, fill the basket. 

Use your fingertips to softly press the grinds into position and level the coffee, not to tamp them down forcibly. Put the top on and set the cooktop to medium heat.

Tip: Coffee experts advise using hot water rather than cold when brewing your pot. By doing this, you avoid “cooking” your coffee as your pot heats up and avoid your brew tasting metallic or bitter.


They say, “a watched pot never boils,” which is why it’s so crucial to keep an eye on your Moka pot while it brews to prevent a rolling boil! In a Moka pot, boiling water temperatures can quickly degrade the flavor of your brew, leaving you with a bitter sludge instead.

As the coffee brews, you can keep the lid open and observe the coffee slowly bubble out as it heats. This will provide you the opportunity to control the brewing process in addition to being a compelling and exciting activity to observe.

Increase the heat if you discover that the coffee is brewing too slowly. You should lower or turn off the heat if the water starts to shoot up or hiss.

Tip: When the coffee is ready, remove it from the heat source and stop the extraction by running cold water over the bottom. By doing this, you can avoid over-extracting your coffee and achieve a perfect, smooth finish.

Why are Fine Coffee Grinds Best for Moka Pots?

Using fine-grind coffee brings out the full flavor of your coffee. How? It’s easier for water to flow through fine-grind coffee, extracting all the flavor. This is because there is a larger surface area for the water to interact with. The outcome is a coffee that is more delicious and less bitter.

A good example, in this case, is Turkish coffee. Turkish coffee requires an extremely fine ground, almost powdery. Remember that burning or over-extracting the coffee is easier since it requires boiling on a stovetop.

However, this also makes it simple to extract all of the flavors from the coffee creating a strong and delicious drink rich in flavor. In simple terms, fine coffee is the best grind size for a Moka pot.

It’s worth noting that fine coffee grinds take a shorter time to extract flavor, usually about one to two minutes. A short extraction period reduces the error margin when obtaining the exact amount of coffee flavor extraction. The shorter the time, the tastier the coffee.

Why is Moka Pot Coffee Finer Than Drip Coffee

Moka pot uses steam pressure to extract flavor from coffee; this process needs to be quick and therefore requires finer coffee grinds. Grind your coffee beans on a Moka pot grind setting; almost as fine as table salt. This should give you a perfect cup of coffee.

On the other hand, drip coffee uses gravity to squeeze boiling water through ground coffee beans. This process takes longer, usually about three to four minutes for a single serve. For this reason, the coffee beans should have a more coarse grind; otherwise, they will over-extract and develop a bitter taste.

Why You Can’t Use Coarse Coffee Grinds in a Moka Pot

If you use coarse coffee grinds, it will take much longer for the water to extract all the flavor from your coffee fully. A large grind size for a Moka pot makes it more difficult for the water to flow through, as the Moka Pot uses vapor pressure to push water through the grinds.

As a result, you will get a weaker cup of coffee with less flavor. Therefore, a coarse coffee grind is not suitable for a Moka pot. The grind size for other brewing techniques, including the French Press, is substantially coarser. This allows the water to go through the grinds in the french press using a plunger rather than steam pressure.

The Importance of a Good Grind

Moka pot grind size is more important than you might realize in your cup of coffee, although it may not seem like it should. Finding the proper grind size could be your turning point if you’ve been fiddling with your Moka pot but still can’t seem to get the flavor you want.

The contact time, extraction rate, and flow speed of your brewing process will determine the ideal grind size.

Contact Period

The amount of time the ground coffee is in contact with hot water is the contact time. More extraction will occur if the water is in contact with the coffee grounds for longer. On the contrary, Less extraction will happen if there’s a shorter contact duration.

Extraction Rate 

The flavor extraction rate is proportional to the coffee grounds’ surface area size. More surface area and a greater extraction rate result from finer grinds. A slower extraction rate will happen if the coffee grounds are coarser. You will require less contact time if your extraction rate is higher.

Flow Speed

The flow speed is how quickly or slowly water moves through the coffee puck during extraction and the pre-infusion phase. You can get the most taste out of your coffee beans by controlling the water flow rate. Since the water must travel through more tightly packed coffee grounds, the flow rate will typically be slower the finer the grind.

Finer grinds allow your coffee to extract more quickly, making them a suitable option for brewing techniques requiring less time. Coarser grinds are preferable for immersion brewers, which may steep a coffee for several minutes.

Tip: Using a coarser grind than your preferred brewing technique calls for can result in weak, watery, or acidic coffee. Your coffee will taste scorched and bitter from over-extraction if your grind is too fine.

A Moka pot can make coffee faster than most other techniques. For this reason, it’s crucial to use a fine grind when using this brewing technique so the water can get the most flavor out of the beans during its brief contact period.

Knowing from experience that using pre-ground coffee that is too coarse for your brew can prevent you from enjoying the wonderful flavor of a Moka brew. Get the maximum flavor and body out of your coffee beans by matching the grind size to the brew method.

Moka pot and coffee beans

Is Espresso Grind too Fine For a Moka Pot?

A Moka Pot requires a grind that is coarser than espresso. The coffee will have difficulty extracting if the grind is too fine, producing a bitter and powerful flavor. Additionally, espresso grind could easily block your Moka pot filter, hence building a dangerous pressure level.

The recommended grind size for a Moka Pot is medium-fine (something close to table salt). This should give you the best coffee in terms of body and flavor. Grind the beans just fine enough so that it requires little pressure to push steam through the Moka pot filter. The espresso grind is too fine to clog the filter or take an eternity to brew.

How to Find the Right Grind Size for Your Moka Pot

There are several methods for determining the ideal grind size for your Moka pot. Using a coffee grinder with adjustable settings is the simplest method. Using this method, you may easily change the setting to get the right grind for your Moka pot.

Finding a coffee grinder that meets your needs requires investigation because numerous varieties are available. Here are a few of the most widely used coffee grinders:

Blade Grinders

Blade coffee grinders turn coffee beans into coffee grounds using blades. They are more affordable and simpler to use than burr grinders. Place the coffee beans in the grinder and turn it on. The blades will grind up the coffee beans into coffee grounds that you can use in a Moka pot.

However, blade grinders can sometimes produce uneven coffee grounds because they are less accurate than burr coffee grinders. It is suitable for those who want a reasonably priced choice and are open to experimenting with various grind sizes.

Burr Grinders

One of the best ways to ground coffee for your Moka Pot is with a burr coffee grinder. These grinders produce a more uniform grind by crushing the beans between two revolving burrs.

The blades on most burr coffee grinders can produce uneven grinds, making the coffee bitter. Burr grinders also let you adjust the grind’s coarseness, allowing you to test various brewing techniques to see which produces the best-tasting results.

Flat Burr Grinders

Flat burr grinders are suitable for producing espresso or other varieties of coffee that call for a very fine grind. The beans stay between two flat metal discs that revolve close to each other to make the coffee grind.

The beans undergo processing and are then pulverized into a fine powder as the discs spin. You can adjust this grinder to generate a variety of grind sizes, and it typically grinds more consistently than a blade grinder.

Although flat burr grinders are expensive, they are worth the cost; if you’re serious about preparing an excellent espresso with your Moka Pot or other varieties of coffee, that calls for a very fine grind.

Conical Burr Grinders

These grinders feature a cone-shaped ring on top of a cylindrical burr. They produce a more consistent grind ideal for Moka pot brewing. Additionally, conical burrs less frequently warm the beans, which might affect their quality. Conical burr grinders are available in manual and electric models.

High/Low-Speed Grinders

These electric grinders can process coffee beans into powder using high and low modes. The two work at different speeds, which makes them different. Low-speed grinders operate slower, generating less heat and preserving the bean’s flavor.

On the other hand, high-speed grinders operate more quickly, generating more heat and causing the beans to lose part of their flavor. You should consider the quantity of coffee you will be brewing and the frequency of use when selecting a grinder.

Depending on your preferences, you can use a low or high-speed grinder for Moka Pot coffee. A low-speed grinder is a wonderful choice if you want to save the beans’ flavor.

Traditional Italian Moka pot

Parting Words

Moka pot users like its portability, small size, and affordable pricing. Although Moka pot coffee can quickly turn into a dark and over-steeped brew, if prepared properly, you can get a rich, smooth brew that tastes a lot like an espresso! 

When using a Moka pot to make coffee, grind size is a crucial factor to consider. Grind size has a significant impact on your coffee’s flavor and texture. This article gives detailed information on selecting the ideal grind size for a Moka pot. Try out several grind sizes to see which one produces the greatest results for you.

We hope you take out your Moka pot and give it another go for a successful, excellent brew now that you’ve paid attention to grind size and have some new insights under your belt!