Can A Coffee Maker Be Used To Make Tea?

Freshly brewed tea sounds refreshing, but you don't have a kettle anymore. Your coffee maker is just sitting there on the counter and, after all, it has the ability to heat up water. Does this mean the coffee maker can be used to make tea? We're here to bring you the answer.

The answer is yes. You are able to brew tea in your regular coffee maker, much the same way you would make coffee. Add in the tea bag or the loose-leaf tea to the coffee filter instead of the coffee grounds and follow the rest of the steps that you would normally follow to make coffee. The steps are simple:

  • Add water to the reservoir
  • Place the coffee carafe on the warmer
  • Press start on your coffee pot, and your tea will brew shortly

Despite how easy that answer sounds, it can be a bit more complicated. For example, you will need to clean the coffee pot if it has been used before, you will need to take into consideration how many tea bags and how much water per tea bag is needed, and you need to take into consideration the temperature at which each type of tea brews. Keep reading to find out more information!

Shot of a woman making coffee at home, Can A Coffee Maker Be Used To Make Tea?

How To Brew Tea In Your Coffee Pot

There are two types of tea: loose leaf and tea bags. There are slightly different steps to brew tea in your coffee pot that depends on which type of tea you are using.

For loose leaf tea, you will still want to use a coffee filter and brew like normal, placing the loose leaves into the filter.

For tea bags, you can remove the coffee filter and place the teabags where the filter was in the basket, and brew. Another option for tea bags that will yield less mess and stronger tea is to hang the teabags in the coffee carafe and brew the hot water like normal with nothing in the basket.

Black Tea

How Many Tea Bags Do You Use For A Coffee Maker?

You can put as many tea bags as you would like in your coffee maker; however, the suggested ratio is one cup of water per teabag. Having said this, your limit of how many tea bags you can put in is based on how many cups of water your coffee pot can hold. For example, if your coffee pot can hold an average of seven cups of water, then you should put in seven teabags. Some people prefer their tea to be strong, so if you prefer that, the suggestion would be more tea to the amount of water you put in.

Can I Brew Green Tea In My Coffee Maker?

Green tea with jasmine in cup and teapot on wooden table on green background

As far as whether or not you can brew green tea in your coffee maker depends on how long the drip time is and how hot the water temperature is. Because green tea has more delicate leaves, it is important that the water temperature is slightly under boiling when the tea is steeped.

It is important to look into how hot the water gets in your coffee pot before brewing your green tea, if the water temperature is too high, the tea will come out bitter.

Can I Brew Black Tea In A Coffee Maker?

Dried black tea on wooden table in kitchen

Much like with green tea, brewing black tea also depends on how long the drip time is and how hot the water temperature is. The steep time and how hot the water temperature is is mainly a concern with loose leaf tea. Black tea usually has a steep time of about four to six minutes and it is brewed in boiling water.

Can You Make Loose Leaf Tea In A Coffee Percolator?

A coffee percolator is a bit different than a regular coffee maker. Percolators are used to filter the water gradually through a porous surface or substance, and it is used to extract all of the flavors without burning the tea. It is very important with a coffee percolator to pay attention to the temperature of the water. As stated above, different types of tea have different brew temperatures.

If you are unfamiliar, a percolator works by boiling water coming up through a tube in the center of the pot. The water then flows over the basket in a rain-like fashion through the tea and into the boiling water to repeat the process. This process is great because it helps the tea steep for longer without burning.

Here is an article on how to use a stovetop percolator. Check it out to get tips on how to best use one.

Should You Be Using A Coffee Maker To Brew Tea?

Human Hand Using Application on Mobile Phone, Smart Homes

As we have found out throughout this article, yes you are able to make tea in a coffee maker, however, the real debate is whether you should make tea in your coffee maker. The main point comes from those people who use tea as a very ritualistic procedure. In other countries, making and brewing tea is a very ritualistic habit and it is against the ritual to brew the tea in a coffee maker, and those rituals have traveled everywhere.

Also, loose leaf teas usually have a longer steep time than the average drip time for coffee makers. If the steep time of the coffee maker is longer than that of the tea, it will cause your cup of tea to be bitter. If the steep time isn’t long enough, your tea will taste like water. Along with that, some teas need different temperatures of water to brew. It is important to pay attention to this. So, ultimately, it's up to you if you want to give it a shot.

Cleaning Your Coffee Maker Before Brewing Tea

Another point is that it may seem easy to throw a few tea bags or some loose leaf tea into your coffee maker and start brewing it. However, if you have put any coffee through that coffee pot before there is an extensive cleaning process, that will need to be done before you can brew your tea.

To clean the coffee maker, you will need to use vinegar and hot water to get rid of the coffee residue. Simply place it where you normally place the water and brew with nothing in the basket. Then you’ll have to run plain hot water through the coffee maker to remove the smell of vinegar. You should also probably scrub the small parts inside the coffee maker as well.

In Closing

Shot of a woman making coffee at home, Can A Coffee Maker Be Used To Make Tea?

Yes, you are able to brew tea in a coffee maker; however, many people will debate you that it is not a good idea. Make sure if you do decide to brew tea in your coffee maker, that you are cleaning it well and paying attention to steep time and water temperature. However you decide to make it, enjoy your tea and enjoy the process!

Still thinking about coffee makers? Check out these articles:

Is Keurig Coffee Weaker Than Drip Coffee?

Do You Need Special Coffee For A Percolator?

Do You Have To Put A Filter In A Coffee Maker?

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