If you’re a fan of espresso but not wanting to invest in a large machine for home use, you might want to try a stovetop espresso maker. Pair it with our Charleston Coffee Roasters Espresso Blend, and you can easily and quickly brew your own espresso-like coffee at home.

Charleston Coffee Roasters - How to Use a Stovetop Espresso Maker - Freshly Brewed Coffee

Stovetop espresso makers are popular in Europe, and especially in Italy. They were first created by the Italian company Bialetti, and commonly go by the name of a Moka Pot. They use steam pressure to force the water through the ground coffee, which is then percolated into the top chamber. Stovetop espresso makers are fairly inexpensive, small to store, easy to use and produce a good strong cup of coffee in just a few minutes.

Charleston Coffee Roasters - How to Use a Stovetop Espresso Maker

Although they are called stovetop espresso makers, the coffee produced is technically not the same as espresso. An espresso machine uses much higher pressure for brewing. But the resulting cup is strong and rich, similar to espresso, and will even have a little bit of delicious crema on top.

Charleston Coffee Roasters - How to Use a Stovetop Espresso Maker - On the Stove


While you typically want a fine grind for espresso, the optimum grind for a stovetop espresso maker is actually more of a medium grind. Our Dark Roast Espresso Blend would be the perfect choice. It’s a blend of Central and South American coffees that we hand select to create this coffee. Even though the coffee will be rich and robust, it will always still be smooth and easy to drink.

Charleston Coffee Roasters - How to Use a Stovetop Espresso Maker - Fill the Bottom with Ground Coffee


We always recommend that you use fresh cold water, preferably filtered. Just don’t use distilled or soft water when brewing your coffee.


Brewing a good cup of coffee in a stovetop espresso maker is quick and simple. If you’re using an electric stove, be sure to start with a low heat setting. This will help you better regulate the temperature to avoid burning the coffee or melting the plastic handle.

  1. Unscrew the top and bottom pieces of the pot. Set aside the top half.
  2. Remove the filter basket from the bottom half of the pot, and fill the reservoir with water just up to the round safety valve.
  3. Replace the filter basket in the bottom half, and fill the basket with ground coffee. Gently shake the basket to smooth out the grounds, but do not tamp or press the coffee down. Be sure there aren’t any lose grounds around the edge, and if so, wipe them away.
  4. Screw the top half of the pot back onto the bottom half.
  5. Set the stovetop espresso maker on the stove over a medium to low flame with the lid closed. You want to be sure that the flame is not larger than the pot itself.
  6. After a few minutes, you will hear the coffee start to percolate into the top half of the pot. If you’re using a gas stove, allow the coffee to percolate until the top pot is half full, and then turn off the heat and allow the coffee to finish brewing. If you’re using an electric stove, once you hear the coffee percolating, turn off the heat and the residual heat will continue to brew the coffee.