Buying a Coffee Percolator: The Ultimate Guide

More and more people are making coffee using traditional methods. Cold brewing, French pressing, and percolating coffee are gaining popularity.

Coffee percolators or the perking process produces a stronger, more flavorful brew.

It lets you make more than one cup at a time. You can use ground coffee or fresh beans in your percolator, and even make cold brew or iced coffee by using cold water.

There are many kinds of percolators available. You can find everything from electric coffee percolators to stovetop glass models.

The following tips will help you make sense of them all.

Types of Percolators

Electric Coffee Percolator

As the name indicates, these percolators are electrically-operated. The water stays hot all day long due to the heating element.

Electric coffee percolators are available in various forms, including models to brew multiple cups at once. Make sure the model you choose comes with automatic shut-off functions or one that has a keep-warm function if you need to make more than one cup.

Stovetop Coffee Percolator

The stovetop coffee percolator is older than electric models and is still popular with those who like the old-fashioned coffee as they leave the house. It works by boiling the water in the bottom chamber of the pot, which forces it up through a tube where it mixes with the ground coffee. It then flows back into the bottom part of the pot.

Stovetop percolators work quickly, but maintaining a high enough temperature for optimal brewing can be difficult. For this reason, many people prefer electric percolators.

Glass Coffee Percolator

The glass percolator comes in various designs. While the bottom of the pot contains water, a chamber above it allows steam to escape. It prevents heat from building up too much and damaging your percolator.

A glass coffee percolator is best for keeping your coffee warm while you enjoy a long, leisurely meal or conversation with friends and loved ones. It is because it prevents overheating and overcooking, allowing the flavor of your coffee to come out fully without getting bitter or burned.

Microwave Percolator

The microwave percolator is a relatively new invention. It works by pouring hot water over ground coffee in your mug and letting it steep for several minutes. Then, you pop the device into your microwave to heat it for another minute or two. It's an easy way to make coffee when you don't have access to other heating sources.

Choosing the Right Percolator for You

choosing best coffee percolator

It is important to consider several factors when choosing the best percolator for your home. Here are a few things to consider before you make your final decision:


Glass coffee pots are easy to clean because you can see how much residue is left after each use. They don't take up too much space in your dishwasher either. On the other hand, porcelain and stainless steel percolators can be hard to clean because you cannot see inside them. These types may also stain or change flavor after several uses.


When buying anything, price should be part of your considerations. A coffee percolator can cost between $45 and $90 (or even more if you opt for a commercial-grade model). Invest in a good quality percolator if you enjoy drinking strong coffee every day. If you are only going to use it occasionally, don't spend a fortune.


If you live alone and don't need more than one cup of coffee at a time, there's no need to buy anything with a large capacity. However, if you love drinking fresh coffee for hours at a time, or you want to share your percolator with family and friends, opt for one that can make more than one cup at a time.


Percolators come in various designs and shapes. Some are tall and cylindrical, while others are short and wide. There are even stovetop percolators that resemble teapots. If you plan to leave your percolator out on the kitchen counter as a decorative piece, choose one that matches your house's other features and décor.


Many manufacturers include coffee filters or measuring spoons with their percolators. Don't forget to add them into your budget if you want extras. Also, consider the number of items you wish to include in your percolator package. Some manufacturers sell their pots with coffee mugs, cups, or spoons for convenience.


Glass coffee percolators are typically made from heat-resistant borosilicate glass with the same durability as Pyrex. It's also easy to clean and maintain. Meanwhile, stainless steel drip coffee makers resist rust and corrosion, while plastic ones do not absorb any unwanted flavors. Aluminum models may react with your beverage, affecting its taste.

How to make coffee in a percolator?

percolate coffee

Percolators are designed to extract the full flavor and essence of coffee beans. The idea is to allow hot water to pass through your grounds several times, allowing it to steep and extract as much flavor as possible.

To make coffee using a percolator, measure the right portions of coarsely ground beans and insert them into your filter basket. Now add cold water into the bottom pot and place the upper part of your percolator on top. Turn your stove on and heat the water in the bottom pot. Your coffee will start percolating into the filter basket. Wait for at least 4 - 5 minutes before removing it.

After serving the coffee, remove the used coffee beans and wash them as soon as possible. Leftover coffee leaves an unwanted stain and residue if it sits too long in the percolator.

Do you need a coffee percolator?

Percolators offer the following benefits:

Plastic is not commonly used in percolators. It makes them a good choice for people concerned about plastic releasing chemicals when hot water is used.

Gravity is used in percolators to circulate water, unlike other coffee makers. It allows you to produce a fine-tasting cup of coffee with a smooth texture.

Additionally, a coffee percolator can prepare several cups of coffee, depending on the design. The machine is common in small businesses and catering establishments, as it can prepare large quantities of coffee at once. Percolated coffee is famous for its outdoor use. You can make coffee in a percolator even when you are camping.

Is percolator coffee better?

There is no universal answer. Those who like strong coffee will enjoy it. It won't appeal to those who want a more watered-down, aromatic coffee.

Coffee made in percolators does not taste as rich and full-bodied as in drip brewers, but it also doesn't contain the harmful chemicals found in instant coffee.

Boiling water is likely to extract some of the bitterness in the coffee. However, it is possible to get that amazing flavor without the harsh taste. Use lightly roasted beans to avoid the burnt taste. Pay attention to the brewing process. Remove the percolator from the heat as soon as the perking or bubbling sound stops. Percolation should be limited to a few minutes.

Iced coffee can also be made with a percolator. They give your coffee the perfect flavor with all the natural essences extracted from your grounds.

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published