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How to Make Coffee Sock Coffee (2 Ways) Hot or Cold Brew

Brewing with a coffee sock is an effective, low-tech method for making coffee. Outside of North America, coffee socks are commonly used. Here’s how to make coffee sock coffee – either hot or cold brew coffee.

This guide is part of our How to Make Coffee series.

how to make coffee sock coffee

How to Make Coffee Sock Coffee

Here’s how to make great coffee sock coffee.

  • Time to first sip: 3 minutes
  • Type of Coffee: Rich, flavorful, bold body with natural coffee oils present
  • Coffee grind: Whatever suits you, but extra fine is often suggested
  • Gear required: Coffee sock filter and optional coffee scale, burr grinder, wooden spoon
  • Difficulty: Super easy

Coffee Sock Tips: Don’t pour boiling water over the grounds since this will scorch them. Let your water cool for a minute after taking it off the heat. Then you can pour over your coffee grounds.

Brewing with a coffee sock is a popular method for making coffee while camping.

And a coffee sock can brew a great cup of coffee that’s rich and flavorful because it allows the oils from the coffee to seep through the brewing process.

Just to be clear, no one is using their actual sock to make coffee. A coffee sock is just a fabric coffee filter, on a frame, made for the purpose of brewing coffee.

All you need is coffee grounds, your mug, and a coffee sock which is a tightly-knitted, reusable cloth filter with an attached metal or wooden handle.

Here’s how it works:

Coffee Sock Brew Recipe (Hot Brew)

Here’s how to brew a good cup of coffee sock coffee.

  1. Heat water to a boil and then let it cool between 30 and 60 seconds.
  2. Put the coffee sock into your empty mug or pot.
  3. Measure your course ground coffee into the coffee sock. Use what works for you, but 1 to 2 tablespoons is suggested for a single cup of coffee.
  4. Pour the water over the grounds slowly – just enough to thoroughly wet them and wait about a minute to let them gas off.
  5. Pour the remaining water over the grounds and allow the coffee to brew between 2 and 3 minutes (or whatever suits your taste).
  6. Remove the coffee sock and enjoy your coffee!

How easy is that?! Follow these instructions for some truly unique coffee. Maybe make this brew on your next hike.

As you probably noticed, the steps are very similar to making pour-over coffee. Some use a sock instead of the much grittier brew method of cowboy coffee.

Coffee Sock Brew Recipe (Cold Brew)

The recipe is actually the same as making regular cold brew coffee.

  1. Course grind your beans
  2. Measure ground beans at a ratio of about 1:5. That is one cup of ground coffee to 5 cups of water.
  3. Put grounds in the coffee sock.
  4. And put the coffee sock in a jar with water.
  5. Set overnight. Wait for at least 14 hours (on the counter) or 20 hours (in the fridge).

There is a company called CoffeeSock that makes fabric versions of paper coffee filters. They have some kits for cold brew coffee. This is a good plan for new cold brew brewers.

My Coffee Sock Experience

Brewing coffee with a coffee sock on a wire frame was a familiar experience for Dena and me. When we lived in South America, we frequently drank coffee brewed by this method.

We owned a couple of coffee socks and made coffee in this method frequently. Our friends brewed coffee this way. And it wasn’t uncommon to see them in restaurants.

In Ecuador, either restaurant coffee was brewed as espresso or in the pour-over variant using a coffee sock. Here’s how to order coffee in Spanish.

Coffee socks are also popular in places like Costa Rica (chorreador de cafe) and Thailand.

chorreador de cafe costa rica
Antique coffee maker (coffee sock) in Costa Rican museum. Also known as chorreador de cafe.

How to Use a Coffee Sock (Video)

Now let’s watch how easy it is to use a coffee sock.

It’s surprising that the coffee sock maker is not used by everyone. Not only is it the easiest method of how to make coffee, but it’s environment-friendly and super easy to use.

It’s also ideal for campers and travelers because it is small and lightweight.

coffee sock instructions recipe

And that’s how to make coffee sock coffee.

Your Turn

Have you brewed with a coffee sock? I would love to hear about your experience and tips below!