What is a Coffee Scale Used For?

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We can’t speak for you, but we know that coffee is an important part of our daily routine!

As such, we are always looking for new ways to enjoy a steaming hot cup of coffee, with the best flavor and as much caffeine as possible to keep us going.

You may want to grab your cup of coffee as fast as possible in the morning, and without delay, but we have an extra step that you are going to want to take: add a coffee scale to your coffee routine.

You may be thinking that measuring out and weighing your coffee beans in the morning is the last thing you want to do, but trust us, the results are divine, and totally worth it. 

So what is a coffee scale used for? Let’s find out!

What Is A Coffee Scale Used For

What is a coffee scale used for?

A coffee scale is used to measure out your coffee beans or grounds for your morning (or the afternoon…or as a post-work treat…) brew.

With a coffee scale, you can have complete control over how much coffee and water you use, to consistently personalize the coffee to your tastes and your liking! 

This means, when you’re making your favorite blend of coffee at home, you will never have to guess the quantity, and you will know you are using the perfect amount of coffee every single time.

With a coffee scale, you can brew coffee with the perfect ratio of coffee to water.

You may be surprised to find that there is in fact a golden ratio of brewing coffee for the perfectly balanced cup of joe.

This golden ratio is typically between 1:15 to 1:18 ratio of coffee to water, which creates a wonderful balance of coffee and water for the best flavor for drip coffee, French press and pour over brewing methods

Without using a coffee scale, you would have no idea if you are brewing a perfectly balanced cup of coffee or not.

But, with a scale, you can guarantee that you are making the most delicious cup of coffee possible, and if you are a coffee lover like us, then you know how essential this is to your morning routine.

In addition, by using a coffee scale, you can produce that perfect cup of coffee every time you make one, which is why baristas will often use a coffee scale.

There will be no frustration because today’s cup of coffee just does not taste as good as the one you made yesterday.

A coffee scale brings a whole new meaning to the term consistency.  

>> Click here to see our reviews of the best coffee scales

Barista weighing whole coffee beans on coffee scale.

Do I need a scale for pour over coffee?

When it comes to making the best, most delicious pour over coffee, a coffee scale is essential.

For pour over coffee, you will want to use a scale to measure out the amount of coffee, and also the amount of water for that exceptional balance of flavor. 

Many coffee scales also have a timer, which is useful for brewing a consistent manual pour over coffee each time.

If you want to make a beautiful cup of pour over coffee, we have some size recommendations for you, but you will need a scale to measure these out and make this pour over coffee accurately. 

  • For an 8 oz cup of pour over coffee, you will want to measure out 0.5 oz (14 grams) of coffee, and 8 oz (233 milliliters) of water.
  • When you want something larger, such as a 12 oz cup of coffee, use 0.75 oz (21 grams) of coffee, and 12 oz( 350 milliliters) of water.
  • Finally, for a large 20 oz cup of coffee, you will need your scales to measure out 1.25 oz (36 grams) of coffee, and 20 oz (600 milliliters) of water. 

As always, we recommend you use these ratios as a starting point and tailor to your preferred taste and strength.

Manual pour over filter on top of coffee brewing scale with timer.

Do you need a scale for espresso?

You do not have to use a scale for espresso, but it is highly recommended that you do.

With a coffee scale, you can ensure that you have the right quantity of espresso beans for the most delicious cup of espresso coffee as possible.

If you are brewing espresso, then we encourage you to use high quality Arabica coffee beans for the utmost flavor and taste.

An optimal dose of espresso is between 7 – 9 grams of coffee beans, or between 14 and 18 grams of coffee for a double shot of espresso. 

As coffee bean weight differs depending on the roast, their origin, age and how they have been stored, using a spoon is not an accurate way to measure your beans.

Therefore to create the best cup of espresso coffee, you will need to use a coffee scale to measure out your finest coffee beans, ready for the perfect pour!

A coffee scale with timer can then also be used to time and weigh your shot, which is particularly useful if your espresso machine is manual and does not have a built-in timer.

Portafilter with ground coffee beans on top of coffee scales.

What should I look for in a coffee scale?

There are so many different types of coffee scales available on the market that it can be hard to find a decent one that will work best for you and your needs.

We would recommend that you find one with a few of the following features for the best results.

One of the most important things to look out for is accuracy and precision, this will ensure that you make the most perfectly balanced cup of coffee consistently. 

When purchasing a coffee scale, you will want to ensure that it has multiple measurements in both grams and ounces.

In addition, you may find that a coffee scale with a larger capacity of 1,000 to 2,000 grams is more convenient for you to measure out your coffee beans and time your manual pour over. 

You may also benefit from one that has a measuring platform big enough for a French press or a Chemex dripper, just to make your life a little easier. 

You also do not want to spend too much on a coffee scale, as you can find many affordable options.

This way, you can save your cash for buying more delicious coffee beans!

We recommend trying out the Hario drip scale, which is our top pick in our coffee scale reviews.

Can you use a food scale for coffee?

You can in fact use a food or kitchen scale for measuring coffee, but sometimes it is just easier to keep the two separate.

Food scales don’t tend to be as accurate as coffee scales, and they also don’t have integrated timers, which are useful for timing your brew.

They also tend to be larger than coffee scales, so not useful for timing your espresso shot.

For these reasons we would recommend having a dedicated coffee scale for weighing and your coffee beans and timing your extraction perfectly. If you don’t have one, they make for a great coffee gift idea!

With a high quality coffee scale, you can ensure that you get perfect accuracy, high precision and a quick response time so that you can make your best cup of coffee in no time at all. 

So now you know how to use a coffee scale, you can brew a consistent cup of coffee at home every day.

More coffee accessory articles

Want to know more? See all our brew guides here or find the best coffee gear here.

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pour over coffee filter on coffee scale with timer with text overlay how to measure coffee perfectly every time.
About Rachel R

Founder of Creators of Coffee, Rachel is a passionate coffee lover, SCA member and former barista, who also loves to research and share practical tips on everything to do with coffee. Favorite way to make coffee: With an Espresso Machine

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