Cold or Hot water In Moka Pot?[Experiment & Results]

You must pour the right temperature water into your Moka Pot to get the perfect taste and flavor. Inappropriate water temperature may result in an undesirable quality of the final coffee brew.

So, should you use cold or hot water in Moka Pot? Cold or room temperature water can’t ensure the desirable taste and quality of the coffee. But preheating the water at 70°C before pouring it into the Moka Pot will maximize the flavor extraction and quality of the coffee. Also, using boiled water can reduce the brew time & can yield over-extraction.

In this article, we will discuss the role of temperature and the appropriate water temperature for perfect coffee brewing. You will also learn about the advantages and results of using water at different temperatures. Hence, keep reading.

What Should Be the Water Temperature For Brewing in Moka Pot?

The appropriate temperature for brewing will vary according to personal preferences. Generally, the ideal water temperature for brewing ranges between 195°F to 205°F(90°C-96°C). A temperature of around 93°C (200 °F) is optimum for the perfect taste and quality of coffee.

But how can you achieve that ideal temperature range while brewing in a Moka pot? You can’t do that precisely, but you can reach somewhere near the ideal range by controlling the water temperature you’re using in the water chamber.

What’s the Expert Opinion?

There are a few disagreements among the expert on Moka pot water temperature. Some say hot water to use, some say cold or room temperature, and others say preheated water will be better.

  • According to Italians, using cold water during brewing is better for a safe coffee-making process. Italians don’t use warm or preheated water in Moka pot brewing.
  • A physicist named Warren King suggested preheating the water at 70° C to get excellent brewing quality.
  • A famous barista named James Hoffman suggested using boiled water to eliminate the metallic taste of the coffee.

Methodology For Testing Different Temperatures Of Water

Some coffee experts or baristas suggest using water that you preheated at 70°C, while some researchers recommend using boiling water for brewing. On the other hand, there have been traditions of using cold water in Moka Pot for decades.

Hence, the whole concept may seem confusing.

Thus, it’s better to test which water temperature will be best for a cup of perfect coffee. I’ve experimented by making Moka pot coffee with different water temperatures. I’ve used a 1-cup aluminum Moka pot with three different water temperatures.

In my experiment, the water temperature was the only variable, and the rest were constant including grind size, heat, amount of water, etc.

  • Room temperature water
  • Preheated water (70° C )
  • Boiled water

Step 1: I’ve taken freshly grounded medium-fine grind, and filled the ground container up to the neck. Then gently leveled the grounds using my finger. I ensured no grounds cling over the threads to avoid leaking.

Aluminum Moka pot on gas stove

Step 2: Then, filled the water chamber up to the lower end of the safety valve and avoided over & under-filling of water each time. I did the same for all three different water temperatures.

Step 3: Screwed the upper chamber with the bottom part tightly to avoid leaking.

Step 4: I’ve put the flame on medium heat. Then I calculated the brewing time and checked the quality of the coffee for all the three conditions

Brewing With Aluminum Moka pot

More on Moka Pot:

Results Of Experiment With Cold vs. Hot Water In A Moka Pot

After testing brewing with various water temperatures, we also noticed considerable differences between those. If you also follow those steps and try to test yourself, you may find results like this.

ParameterRoom Temperature WaterPreheated WaterHot Water
Brewing time5 minutes4 minutes2 minutes
AppearanceLess cream layer on topCream Layer on topThe crema layer is not good as pre-heated water
MouthfeelToo much wateryHeavy mouthfeelStrong
Taste and flavor Less aromaticBalanced flavor and better tasteSharper taste and less flavourful

summary: I’ve found coffee tastes better with preheated water (70° C), but it takes less time with hot water.

Let’s see the differences between them more clearly:

1.     Brewing Time

From the table, you can see that brewing with room water will take around 5 minutes longer than the preheated and hot water brewing. So, if you’re in a hurry using boiled water is the best choice, but may lose some flavor.

Moka pot brewing with boiled water
I took the picture of the Moka pot at the end of brewing using boiled water

2.     Appearance

When you brew with cold or room temperature water, the temperature isn’t high enough to extract the oils from coffee grounds. That’s why the coffee will seem watery.

On the other hand, with preheated water, almost all the oil will be extracted from the coffee grounds. This will give a better taste of coffee with a visible crema layer on top. For boiled water coffee becomes over-extracted if you make delay taking the Moka pot off the heat.

I found a relatively better taste coffee when I took the Moka pot off-heat immediately after the sputtering noise with hot water.

Nice crema on top of Moka pot espresso
Moka pot coffee after brewing with preheated water, you can see the better crema layer

3.     Mouthfeel

Using the preheated water brews the Moka pot coffee near the ideal brewing temperature. That is the reason for the mouthfeel taste.

However, As the higher temperature of water ensures more extraction of nutrients and flavors, the final coffee brew will be dense. Thus, it will give you a relatively bitter taste compared to preheated or room-temperature water.

4.     Taste And Flavour

When you use cold or room temperature water for brewing, the extraction takes place at a lower temperature. So, the resulting brew will be less aromatic. Brewing with preheated water will make the ideal extraction, the coffee gives a balanced and better taste. But brewing with boiled water may often cause over-extraction, and causes a sharp & bitter taste.

So, after brewing using preheated water, the taste of the coffee will be the best of all. Also, the flavor will be too pleasant.

Related Resources on Moka Pot:

Brewing with Room Temperature water in Moka pot
Brewing with Room Temperature water in Moka pot

Difference Between Cold and Hot Water for Brewing

You can use either cold or hot water for brewing. Generally, using cold water results in an under-extraction of coffee flavors. But preheated water or hot water will reduce the risk of this under-extraction. Let’s see the differences in details:

Cold Or Normal Water For Brewing

1~2 bar vapor pressure is enough to push the cold or normal water up to the middle chamber of the Moka pot.

Using cold water creates enough suction to move the water to the upper chamber. But, still, the extraction process can’t reach the ideal temperature (90°C-96°C) for brewing. It will brew the coffee only at 69°C.

To avoid this under-extraction of coffee, you need to overfill the pot with cold or normal water, or you need to use hot water. In case of overfilling the pot with normal or cold water:

  • Overfilling the bottom chamber with cold or room-temperature water will reduce the amount of air there.
  • This less amount of air will create greater suction pressure than before.
  • As a result, the vapor pressure and the temperature of the pot will also increase.

But, this process may cover up the safety valve, which will be dangerous. That’s why we discourage you from following this method.

Using Hot Water For Brewing

If you preheat the water up to 70°C before pouring it into the bottom chamber, it will help to reach the brewing temperature of 88°C. Though it’s not enough, still it’s close enough to the ideal temperature for coffee brewing.

In a Moka Pot, though, the temperature of the initial coffee is 88°C; it will increase to 94°C gradually. Also, if you use water of less than 70°C, you still can’t avoid the under-extraction. And using water hotter than this may result in over-extraction and bitter coffee.

Why Is Preheated Water Beneficial for Brewing In Moka Pot?

Here are several advantages of using hot water for brewing coffee in the stovetop espresso maker:

  • Less brewing time: Using hot water ensures the temperature is already quite close to the brewing temperature. That’s why it will take less time for the brewing process to be completed.
  • Quick flavor extraction: The flavor extraction will occur at high temperatures and quickly. Hence, it will eliminate the risk of over-extraction due to overcooking.
  • Helps to detect malfunction: As the process is faster with preheated water, you also can detect any malfunction quickly.
  • Less metallic taste: Making the coffee with preheated water will serve a coffee with zero to minimum metallic taste.
  • Preferable taste: If you want to make your coffee taste better, using preheated water is the best option.

Why Do Some People Prefer Brewing With Cold Water?

Instead of a lot of advantages of using preheated or hot water, still, a few people will prefer using cold water. With cold water, the brewing process will take longer as the extraction will start far below the boiling temperature.

Besides, the coffee taste won’t be as good as preheated water. So, cold water is not related to the taste and quality of the coffee brew. Here are the reasons why people choose to use cold water in the stovetop espresso maker:

  • With hot water, there is always a risk of burning yourself while assembling the Moka Pot. But, with cold water, you can safely assemble the coffee maker without any difficulty.
  • Using cold water is the best way to brew coffee when you want to make coffee with fewer actions.
  • You also won’t need any extra equipment like an electric kettle or heating pot for preheating the water.
  • The taste buds of people won’t be similar for everyone. Hence, some people may like the taste of coffee when they brew it in cold water.

Related Posts:


The water temperature of a Stovetop espresso pot can control the quality and taste of coffee. Generally, most people like coffee, which gives a heavy mouthfeel and is enriched with flavor. So, for perfect quality, you should be aware of whether you should use cold or hot water in Moka Pot.

Cold or room temperature water will result in the under-extraction of coffee grounds. But, with preheated water of almost 70°C, you will get stovetop espresso coffee of excellent taste and flavors.

Sujit Modak

Leave a Comment