Is your coffee filter gross and dirty? Does your coffee taste bad? In this post, you'll learn how to clean your coffee filter. I include metal, reusable, gold mesh, plastic, espresso, pour over, and coffee socks. A clean filter means better tasting (and healthier) coffee.
Cleaning Reusable Coffee Filters
The coffee filter needs to be cleaned regularly to avoid build-up which can affect the flavor of your coffee and the function of your machine.
Why do coffee filters need to be cleaned?
Cleaning permanent coffee filters is critical because they can trap mold and bacteria in addition to a film that alters the taste of your coffee.
Some of them are dishwasher safe, but we always recommend cleaning by hand so that you prolong their life and you know for sure that every nook and cranny is clean.
How to Clean Coffee Filters
In this post, we're talking about reusable, or permanent, coffee filters. Obviously you don't need to clean a disposable filter – it gets thrown away after the first use.
Reusable filters are make a many materials. They include metal, gold mesh, plastic, and even fabric. We'll cover them all in this post.
Let's get started!
How do you clean a metal coffee filter?
Metal coffee filters are easy to clean because you can really see where the stains are.
Make sure you’ve taken all the components apart if there are any and wash by hand without using harsh cleansers that can ruin the finish.
Please keep in mind that we are talking about stainless steel when referring to “metal”. We don't recommend using baking soda on aluminum.
Cleaning metal coffee filter with baking soda:
Here's what you'll need to clean your metal coffee filter:
- washcloth, brush
- baking soda
3 Steps: Cleaning a metal coffee filter
- Soak your metal filter for a few minutes in hot soapy water to loosen the film.
- Gently scrub your filter to remove any stains and allow it to air dry completely.
- If it’s been a while since you’ve cleaned your filter, use a small bit of baking soda mixed with water to remove any lingering stains from the filter and make sure to rinse and allow to dry thoroughly.
Cleaning a metal coffee filter with vinegar:
Vinegar is a great way to descale the coffee filter and make sure it’s clean. Here's how to do it:
- washcloth, brush
- baking soda
4 Steps: Clean a metal coffee filter with vinegar
- Mix equal parts vinegar and warm water and allow the filter to soak for a few minutes.
- Gently scrub the filter with your brush to remove stains and shine the metal.
- You could also mix a little baking soda into the vinegar solution for a foaming action that’s great at removing the lingering film from the filter.
- Make sure to rinse and allow to dry thoroughly.
The more often you clean the filter, the less you’ll have to go to extremes to remove grime.
How do you clean the basket of a coffee maker?
Running a clean cycle through your basket is a great way to keep scale and film at bay. At least once a week, run a cycle with no coffee grounds.
As mentioned earlier in this post, running a vinegar cycle through your machine will help clean the basket at the same time.
Put a paper filter in the basket to catch any deposits that come up from your water reservoir and then discard the filter and the water in the carafe.
If it’s been a long time since you’ve cleaned the basket, see if the entire thing will remove from your coffee maker and run it underwater, brushing out any grounds.
Gently scrubbing with mild soap and water will help get of film and grime as well. Using a small nonabrasive scrub-brush or toothbrush can help get in around the grooves commonly found in coffee maker baskets.
If your basket doesn’t remove, do your best to remove grounds by using a small brush or tipping your coffee maker on its side if you can.
How do I clean my Keurig coffee filter?
Keurig coffee filters are also a lot like any other coffee filter.
Use vinegar and hot water to help remove any grounds or scale and allow the filter to soak in the mixture for a few minutes to loosen the grime. Gently brush it out with your cleaning brush to make sure you’ve gotten everything out.
You could also run a clean cycle with no coffee grounds to help remove the film. Clean your filter regularly to prolong its life and prevent poor tasting coffee.
How do you clean a coffee screen?
Coffee screens can also be cleaned with a mixture of vinegar and hot water.
Gently scrub the screen after soaking it in equal parts vinegar and water to loosen any oils and clear it out for your next use.
If you don't clean coffee screens regularly, you may find yourself having to replace them a lot sooner than you’d like.
How do you clean coffee oils?
Oils can be tricky because they stick to the surface and slowly bake on creating stains.
Vinegar and basic blue dawn dish detergent are great for removing trapped oils because the mixture breaks up the oil’s consistency, allowing you to scrub it clean and remove any stains.
Blend the vinegar and soap in a container and allow the components to soak for a few minutes. Begin to brush the oil stains gently until they remove completely.
How do you get mold out of coffee filters?
Molded coffee filters may have to be discarded, but before you do that, try to remove the mold.
Allow the filter to soak overnight in a mixture of equal parts of water and vinegar to kill the mold spores. Then gently cleanse the filter with a brush and mild soap.
Allow the filter to dry completely before you make your next cup of coffee.
How do you clean a gold coffee filter?
Cleaning a gold coffee filter is essential to preserving the flavor of the coffee.
Gently cleanse the filter using a mild soap such as classic blue Dawn and a small brush. If you don’t have a small brush, a toothbrush is a great tool for getting into the hard to reach places.
Gently remove any stains and film and allow the filter to air dry completely before you use it again.
How do you clean an espresso filter?
Espresso filters get really grimy, so clean it out each time you use your espresso machine.
Take the portafilter and basket apart and wash each individually. Use a mild soap and a small cleaning brush (or nonabrasive scrubby pad) and gently rub the filter in a circular direction to remove the film and stains.
If you have trouble, a small amount of baking soda can help remove stubborn stains, but make sure that you remove all the baking soda before your next cup of espresso.
How do you clean stainless steel coffee filters?
Stainless is easy to clean with mild soap and a brush (or nonabrasive scrubby pad).
Use hot water and gently scrub the steel filter in a circular motion to lift grime.
If you have trouble, soaking the filter for a few minutes could help, but don’t leave the filter in the water for long because it can eat the finish. You could also try vinegar to help remove hard water stains and calcium deposits if it’s been a long time since you’ve cleaned the filter.
How do you clean a metal pour-over filter?
The metal pour-over filters can be gently scrubbed with mild soap and a bit of white vinegar.
Use a toothbrush or other small brush with plastic bristles to help lift stains and sanitize the filter. You could also use a nonabrasive scrubby pad.
Make sure you clean both sides of the filter until you don’t see any more grime or debris in your filter. Clean the filter after each use for best results and to prolong its life.
How do you clean coffee socks?
Thoroughly rinse out your coffee sock after each use.
Discard the grounds and rinse the sock until the water runs clear. Squeeze out excess water and lay flat to dry.
Once a week (or more often if you like) boil water and allow the socks to soak for five to ten minutes to remove oils and sanitize.
The key with socks is being diligent to rinse them out after each use so that you don’t have to replace the sock sooner than you’d like.
Want to clean your full coffee maker? Check out our complete guide: How to Clean a Coffee Maker
Plus, here's how to clean your coffee maker – by brand (including Ninja, Bunn, Bella, Keurig, Cuisinart, Mr. Coffee, and Black & Decker for better-tasting coffee.
How did it go for you? Did you notice a flavor improvement after cleaning your coffee filter? Let me know any tips below!