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AeroPress Coffee Maker review: a lightweight, versatile solution to brewing great coffee at camp

This lightweight, easy-to-use coffee maker brews up a variety of different types of coffee, and they’re all five star

Aeropress coffee maker
(Image: © Aeropress )

Our Verdict

You’ll be impressed by how easy to use and clean this portable coffee maker is, but you’ll forget all that once you taste the amazing brew

For

  • Brews four different types of great tasting coffee including cold brew
  • Lightweight and fairly compact
  • Easy to use and no clean
  • Includes mug
  • Press time is only 20 seconds

Against

  • Several parts to keep track of and no carrying case
  • Requires special paper filters (but comes with 350)

AeroPress Coffee Maker: first impressions

The AeroPress Coffee Maker is widely regarded as one of the best camping coffee makers around thanks to consistently delicious coffee, but there are other features that make it standout. At its essence, this coffee maker is part-pour over and part-press, with three main components: a chamber that sits on top of your coffee cup, a filter cap that screws into it and a plunger. It comes with some extras like a coffee scoop, handy holder for the paper filters it uses, stirrer and funnel, but you can easily leave those at home if you’re traveling light.

When you’re ready for a pick-me-up, simply place a paper filter into the filter cap, screw it on the chamber and place it on top of your camping coffee cup. Add coffee and water and gently press the plunger down and you’ll be wrapping your hands around a steaming cup of joe in 20 seconds. What’s brilliant about this device is that you can modify your approach for American, espresso, latte style and even makes a fine cold brew. If you’re going with espresso, you can brew about three shots at a time.

When you’re finished with your AeroPress, you just pop the grounds out with the paper filter all in one go and a quick rinse or wipe will have it ready to use again tomorrow. Though this device does require paper filters, it comes with 350 of them to start you out so you’ll be well stocked up for almost an entire year’s worth of daily coffee. You’ll love this coffee maker for car camping and road trips and you’re likely to even use it at home in place of your regular press to save on scraping coffee grounds into the trash.

Specifications

• RRP: $39.95 (US) / £36.99 (UK)
• Weight: 13oz / 368g (including scoop and stirrer)
Materials: BPA-free polypropylene
• Brew capacity: 10oz
• Dimensions: 5.5 in x 4in (chamber and plunger)
• Best use: Car camping, glamping, road trips, home use

AeroPress Coffee Maker: round the campfire

Aeropress coffee maker

The AeroPress Coffee Maker is widely regarded as one of the best camping coffee makers around (Image credit: Aeropress)

I was a little unsure about this when it arrived because the box it comes in is a little larger than what I was expecting for a coffee maker adequate for camping and it involves several parts which drafted an illusion of complexity I’d be unable to deal with pre-coffee. In reality, it’s really easy to use, with three main components that fit together easily and sit on top of your coffee cup.

Once you pop the filter in, it’s just a case of measuring out your coffee and adding hot water, both of which are made easy by the fact that this is one of the few camping coffee makers I’ve tried that comes with its own scoop, and it has numbers on the side telling you how much water you need to add depending on how much you’re making. Some camping coffee makers are so small that you end up spilling your grounds everywhere trying to get them in, but the chamber on this is wide enough that there’s no mess. For just myself, a whole scoop using the spoon that comes is a little high-octane, but I just use a smaller scoop and add water up to the first marking for a consistently delicious and strong shot. You can make up to four espresso shots at a time, but realistically this is good for about two cups of strong coffee at a time. Since it’s made from plastic, there’s no need to wait for it to cool between brews.

There are a few extra components that make it all seem a bit more complicated than it is, like a stirrer, a funnel for pouring water when you’re at camp and don’t have a kettle and a holder for the coffee filters, but you can easily just set these aside when you don’t need them. I won’t lie, the fact that the grounds pop out as a perfect disc making clean up practically unnecessary was a major source of delight for me.

Obviously the fact that it needs paper filters is a slight downside, but you can order these in the hundreds, and I would say that I don’t find it really easy to use on uneven ground, or with a tall coffee tumbler, so for camping it’s best to have a picnic table or storage bin to provide a nice, flat surface. For five-star coffee however, those are minor gripes and while this is lightweight enough for camping and travel, it’s also taken the place of my french press at home and it makes a great gift, too.

Here’s how it performed:

Coffee

Brews consistently delicious hot and cold coffee.

Ease of use

Simply add the paper filter to the filter cap, screw it onto the chamber and set it on your mug. Add coffee and hot water and plunge in 20 seconds.

Durability

Made from BPA-free plastic, this is pretty robust.

Portability

There are several parts to this but you can definitely set off with just the filter cap, chamber and plunger all screwed together, put the scoop and stirrer inside them and bring a few paper filters in a plastic bag and it’s not much bigger than your coffee tumbler.

Capacity

It brews ten ounces at a time so even though it says four cups, those are really espresso sized cups. If you like a nice, strong coffee, you can easily brew two cups at a time.

Value 

Great value for what you get, and you won’t blink at the price if you love coffee.

Julia Clarke is a staff writer for Advnture.com and the author of the book Restorative Yoga for Beginners. She loves to explore mountains on foot, bike, skis and belay and then recover on the the yoga mat. Julia graduated with a degree in journalism in 2004 and spent eight years working as a radio presenter in Kansas City, Vermont, Boston and New York City before discovering the joys of the Rocky Mountains. She then detoured west to Colorado and enjoyed 11 years teaching yoga in Vail before returning to her hometown of Glasgow, Scotland in 2020 to focus on family and writing.