Stainless steel is the ideal material for a percolator. It retains heat well, resists damage from impacts or corrosion, and won’t retain odors or add a metallic taste to your brew.
You can find both stovetop and electric percolators that use an all-steel construction. Whether you’re looking for an easy way to brew your morning joe or gearing up for your next camping trip, a stainless steel percolator is a great tool for the job.
You won’t find any aluminum or plastic in the construction of the Coletti Bozeman Coffee Pot. All components that come in contact with the brew are made of 18/10 stainless steel, with a wood-lined handle that’s cool and comfortable to grip.
You can check on the brew’s progress through the glass cover knob. It also comes with a pack of optional metal mesh filters if you want a smoother cup with less grit than traditional percolator coffee.
The sleek look of this Presto Stainless Steel Coffee Maker will look right at home on the counter of any modern kitchen. Its long, tapered spout is excellent for entertaining because it’s easy to pour without dripping. It also brews large batches quickly and has an automatic warming function to keep the coffee hot until you serve it.
The Farberware Yosemite is an excellent percolator to take with you on camping trips. Its 8-cup capacity is large enough to serve a group but more compact and easier to pack than larger models.
The lid fits tightly to keep in heat, especially important on cool mornings outdoors. It’s a convenient choice for the home, too, just as easy to clean as it is to use.
The Farberware 12-Cup Percolator is a fast-brewing electric percolator that’s easy to use. Just add water and coffee and plug it in.
When the brew’s done, it switches automatically to its keep-warm function. It’s slim and compact with a detachable cord, so it’s a breeze to store and won’t take up much space on the counter.
If you want a condensed brew to use in lattes and cappuccinos, the Goodmorn Stovetop Espresso Maker is an excellent choice. This versatile and durable stovetop brewer works on all heat sources, including gas ranges and induction cookers, brewing the equivalent of 6 espresso shots in 5 minutes.
The precision-cut threads and silicon ring ensure a full seal between the reservoir and brewing chamber maintains proper brew pressure, with a high-density filter to keep grit out of your cup.
The West Bend Stainless Steel Coffee Percolator gets to the ideal temperature quickly and maintains that temperature throughout the brew. When it’s finished, the indicator light will illuminate and the percolator will hold it at the perfect serving temperature. Its broad base and tapered spout keep it from dripping, tipping, or spilling, and there’s a convenient level indicator on the handle so you can easily see how much is in the pot.
For smaller groups, an 8-cup percolator brews all the coffee you need in a more compact pot. This Spectrum Brands Farberware Percolator uses premium stainless steel for all brewing parts, with high-quality electronic components in the base so it will last for years even with daily use.
Its heating element keeps coffee about 25% hotter than most automatic drip or single-serve machines so you can enjoy it down to the last cup.
Here’s another top choice for campers and RVers. The Eurolux Percolator has a simple design of heavy-duty stainless steel. The etched scale markers on the side make it easy to fill with the exact amount you need wherever you are and it’s easy to clean at home or on the road.
The versatile Primula Stainless Steel Coffee Maker makes 4 servings of rich stovetop espresso on any style of stove. The tight seal and safety valve on the base maintain the ideal pressure for a smooth fully-extracted brew, with a flip-top lid and ridged handle for comfortable pouring. It’s the most compact brewer on the list, as well, and our top choice for small apartments and tiny homes.
The Cook N Home Steel Coffee Percolator is another model you can use at home or at the campsite. The integrated tight-sealing lid has a viewing window to keep an eye on the brew’s progress without letting out the heat. It brews the perfect amount for 2-4 people and can be heated on a stovetop, electric burner, or over an open fire.
That depends on what you’re looking for from your brewer and what kind of coffee you want to drink. Both of these brewing methods can produce a great-tasting cup. They’re both convenient, too, but for different reasons. Here’s how the brewing methods stack up side-by-side. As you’ll see, they both have their advantages.
Both automatic drip machines and percolators can make delicious coffee. Percolator coffee has a stronger flavor with more bitter notes and a more pronounced aroma. Conversely, drip-brewed coffee is smoother and milder, with more sweetness and less bitterness.
Drip coffee uses a paper filter that prevents any sediment or ground coffee from escaping into your cup. The larger holes in most metal percolator filter baskets trap the larger coffee particles, but unless you add additional layers of filter you’ll likely find at least some sediment or sludge in your cup. If you want a completely grit-free cup of coffee, automatic drip is a better choice.
Both percolator and drip brew in about the same length of time, but a drip machine does more of the work for you. Even a basic model controls the temperature and brew time, meaning you can do other things while it’s brewing.
With stovetop percolators, it’s up to the user to control the temperature inside and prevent it from reaching a full boil that can alter the brew’s flavor. You also need to pay attention to the length of the brew and remove it from the heat at the right time to avoid over-extraction. Electric percolators are a bit more hands-off, but still not as automatic as a drip machine.
Automatic drip machines require outlet power to work. Electric percolators need outlets, too, but they’re more self-contained and use less power, so they’re still more portable than your typical drip brewer. Stovetop percolators just need a heat source—anything from a burner on your stove to a campfire will do the trick. This gives percolator brewers more versatility for use in different spaces.
Stainless steel stovetop percolators can be taken apart and washed in the dishwasher without damage, making them incredibly easy to clean. Electric percolators are non-immersible, but you can still wash the interior components in a dishwasher, leaving just the pot to clean manually.
Automatic drip machines have water lines and other interior components that can’t be easily accessed for manual cleaning. There are also just more components, between the brew basket, carafe, reservoir, and other inner workings. To fully clean a drip machine you’ll need to descale it—not a complicated process, but more maintenance than you’ll need to do to a percolator.
Like glass, food-grade stainless steel is non-toxic and non-porous. It’s an excellent material for those trying to limit their exposure to chemicals, which can leach into your cup from some plastic or aluminum brewers. It’s also easy to clean and sterilize, so it’s less likely to provide a breeding ground for bacteria and mold.
The only potential safety concern with a stainless steel brewer is that it can get hot to the touch during the brewing process. Most have wood, plastic, or rubber handles so you can serve your coffee without burning yourself, but be careful around kids or pets to make sure they don’t touch (or knock over) the pot and injure themselves.
You’ll hear mixed reviews of coffee from health professionals. Its acidity and caffeine content are the most oft-cited negatives, and if you drink too much you can end up with an upset stomach or a bad case of the jitters.
In moderation, however, coffee can be a good thing. It increases your body’s production of cortisol, boosting your metabolism and increasing how much fat you burn during exercise. Coffee is also loaded with antioxidants and B vitamins and improves your cognitive ability. Recent studies suggest drinking coffee can limit your risk of Alzheimer’s disease by up to 65%.
A metal mesh filter, like those used in percolators or French press brewers, allows more of the oils and acids from the coffee to pass through. This means you’ll get more of those healthy compounds in your cup than you would with a paper-filtered brewing method like automatic drip.
You can use any whole-bean coffee for a percolator but you don’t want to buy pre-ground coffee from the supermarket. That coffee is typically at a medium grind size and meant to be brewed in automatic drip machines.
Percolators use a larger coarse grind, similar to the grind level used for French press. If you try to use medium-ground coffee, you’ll at the very least end up with a lot of grit in your cup and may end up clogging your brewer.
Medium-roasted beans often taste the best brewed in a percolator. Dark roasts can end up tasting too bitter, while lighter roasts may be overly acidic or weak. Look for roasts with a balanced flavor profile, such as beans from Colombia, Peru, or Sumatra.
A Head to Head Comparison of Percolator vs Drip Coffee
How to Make Coffee Using a Stovetop Percolator
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Health Benefits of Coffee – How to Drink Coffee the Healthy Way
13 Health Benefits of Coffee, Based on Science