Moka Pot Grind Size| What is Best?

A Moka pot is a stovetop coffee maker used to brew espresso-style coffee. Luigi De Ponti & Alfonso Bialetti invented it in 1933 [1]. Since then, it has become popular for making strong, flavorful coffee.

It passes hot water through ground coffee beans held in a filter basket. It is then forced into an upper chamber where the brewed coffee is collected. The grind size of the coffee beans plays a crucial part in achieving your desired flavor.

The ideal grind size for Moka Pot brewing is medium-fine, slightly coarser than espresso grind, and finer than table salt. A finer grind will produce stronger, more intense flavors, while a coarser grind will produce weaker-tasting coffee.

Moka Pot Brewing Basics

Anatomy of A Moka Pot
Anatomy of A Moka Pot

Brewing coffee with a Moka Pot is an easy way to make delicious espresso-like coffee in the comfort of your home. Here’s how it works throughout this step-by-step process.

Step 1: Start by filling the bottom chamber of the Moka Pot with preheated water. This is to prevent “overcooking” your coffee and reduce the chance of metallic, burnt, or bitter taste. Make sure not to fill it above the safety valve.

Step 2: Place the filter basket into the bottom chamber and fill it with freshly ground coffee. For best results, use a medium grind size that is slightly finer than what you would use for drip coffee. Don’t tamp the coffee grounds, instead gently pat the grounds to level the surface.

Step 3: Place the top chamber of the Moka Pot onto the bottom chamber and screw on tightly. Use a towel to hold the bottom chamber as it is hot with preheated water.

Step 4: Put your Moka Pot on a stovetop burner or on an induction cooker over medium heat until you hear a hissing sound from inside (usually takes about 5 minutes). As soon as you hear this sound, remove your Moka Pot from the heat source immediately to avoid over-extraction or burning your coffee. To avoid burnt flavor hold the Moka pot bottom part under running water.

Step 5: Pour your freshly brewed espresso-like coffee into cups and enjoy.

More Resources:

  1. How Does A Moka Pot Works [A Detailed Explanation]
  2. How to Fix A leaking Moka Pot [Quick & Easy]
  3. What are the Best Alternatives for A Moka Pot?

How Does Grind Size Affect the Taste of Moka Pot Coffee?

Brewing Espresso-style With A Moka Pot by myself

When preparing coffee with your Moka pot, the coarseness of the beans is an integral factor in creating a delicious cup. The grind size can range from extra coarse to extra fine, and each size affects the flavor of the coffee differently.

Below are the different grind size categories and how it affects the taste of Moka pot coffee.

Extra Coarse Grind

An extra coarse grind is best for cold brews and French press coffees. This grind size has large particles that are easy to filter out. That results in a smooth cup of coffee with low acidity and bitterness.

Coarse Grind

A coarse grind is ideal for pour-over coffees and Moka pots. It has smaller particles than an extra coarse grind, but it still allows water to flow easily while extracting more flavor from the beans. This results in a cup of coffee that is full-bodied and flavorful without being overly acidic or bitter.

Medium Grind

For the optimal cup of coffee, a medium grind is the key for drip machines and AeroPress. With its finer particles, more flavor from the beans can be extracted as sediment is filtered out. That offers a balanced yet flavorful brew without being too intense or tart.

Medium-Fine Grind

Medium-fine grounds for Moka pot
Medium-fine grounds for Moka pot

The medium-fine grind is the ideal grind size for a Moka pot. It falls in between the range of finer than filter coffee but not as fine as espresso grind. It should be coarser than an espresso grind.

Fine Grind

A fine grind is best for espresso machines and Turkish coffees. It has very small particles that allow water to extract maximum flavor from the beans. That results in a strong cup of coffee with intense flavor notes and high levels of acidity and bitterness.

What Factors Affect Moka Pot Grind Size?

Achieving the perfect grind size for your Moka pot is essential for a great cup of coffee. The grind size affects your coffee’s flavor, aroma, and overall quality. Here are some factors that can affect the grind size of your Moka pot:

Roast Level

The roast level of your beans can impact the grind size. Darker roasts tend to be oilier and easy to extract requiring a coarser grind. On the other hand, lighter roasts require a finer grind to obtain a good extraction as it is harder to extract

Bean Type

Coffee beans
Coffee beans

Different types of beans require different levels of grinding. For example, Arabica beans are usually roasted at lower temperatures and require a finer grind than Robusta beans. Robusta beans are roasted at higher temperatures and need a coarser grind.

Moka Pot Size

Different Moka pot size
Different Moka pot size

The size of your Moka pot also plays a vital role in determining the right grind size for it. Smaller pots will need a finer grind as they have less space for water to pass through. Larger pots will need a coarser grind as they have more room for water to flow through.

How Grind Size Affects Moka Pot Brewing

Grind size plays a huge role in Moka pot brewing, and it’s one of the key factors to determine, how your coffee turns out to be.


Moka pots use pressure to force hot water through the coffee grounds, resulting in a strong and flavorful cup of coffee. The amount of pressure used will depend on the grind size; finer grinds require more pressure than coarser ones.

Extraction Time

The extraction time is also affected by the grind size. Finer grinds extract faster due to more surface area than coarser ones, resulting in a stronger cup of coffee. If you want a milder cup, you should use a coarser grind.

Flow Rate of Water

How fast water will pass through the ground during pre-infusion or in extraction time also determines by the grind size. In general, water will pass more quickly through coarse grind because of less densely packed coffee grounds than finer grind.

Determining The Best Size of Ground Coffee for Your Moka Pot

Brewing the perfect cup of coffee with a Moka pot requires more than just the right ingredients.

Achieving the perfect grind size is the key when using a Moka pot, and a medium-fine grind is the way to go. This grind should be a little coarse than what you would use for espresso, but still finer than a grain of table salt.

Steps To Determine the Right Grind Size For Your Moka Pot

Here are some steps to help you determine the right grind size for your Moka pot.

Step 1: Consider Your Grinder

The first thing you need to consider is your grinder. Depending on the model, your grinder might have between 4 and 60 grind settings.

Aluminum Moka pot on gas stove

Naturally, the more options you have, the more you can tweak your drink. If you’re confused about which grinder to use, you can go through this list of top grinders for Moka pot, and find one that suits your need.

Step 2: Fine or Medium-Fine Grind

The best grind size for a Moka pot is either fine or medium-fine. A fine coffee grind has particle sizes of around 1/32” (0.8mm).

Using a finer grind will result in a stronger and more intense flavor, but be careful not to go too fine as this could clog the filter screen and generate a bitter taste.

Step 3: Experiment and Adjust

Of course, everyone’s taste preferences are different. So don’t be afraid to experiment with different grind sizes until you find one that suits your taste buds perfectly.

Use a finer grind next time if your coffee tastes too weak or watery. On the other hand, if it tastes too bitter or strong, try using a coarser grind.

If you have more options, you can tweak your drink more precisely. Once you know how many grind settings are available, you can experiment with different sizes until you find one that works best for your particular Moka pot.

How To Adjust the Grind Size?

If you’re using a manual grinder, adjusting the grind size is as simple as turning a knob or lever until it reaches your desired setting.

Electric burr grinders usually come with digital displays that allow you to select from different pre-set grind sizes or manually adjust them according to your needs.

VSSL coffee grinder settings

How To Tell If the Grind Size Is Correct?

The easiest way to tell if you’ve found the right grind size for your Moka pot is by tasting it. If it’s too weak or watery, try grinding it finer; if it’s too bitter or strong, try grinding it coarser.

Alternatively, another best idea is to follow the grind size chart, or a scale to measure your grind.

With some experimentation and practice, you’ll soon be able to determine which grind size works best for your particular setup and taste preferences.

The Benefits of Having the Right Grind Size For Your Moka Pot

Using the right grind size for your Moka pot can make a huge difference in the flavor and quality of your coffee. Here are some of the benefits of having the correct grind size:

  • A finer grind will help extract more flavor from the beans, resulting in a richer and more flavorful cup of coffee
  • A coarser grind will produce a less intense cup of coffee, which may be preferable if you don’t like strong flavors
  • The right grind size will also help prevent the filter screen’s clogging, leading to an uneven extraction and an unpleasant taste
  • A consistent grind size will ensure that each cup of coffee has a consistent flavor profile

Grind Settings of Well-Known Grinders for Moka Pot

Grinder NameSettings for Moka Pot
Baratza Encore Coffee Grinder 12
VSSL coffee grinder4
Javapresse Coffee Grinder2-7
Capresso infinity coffee grinderFine 2 – Medium 1
Oxo brew conical coffee grinder1-6


The grind size of your beans significantly impacts the flavor and quality of your coffee. That is why it’s crucial to find the right grind size for your Moka pot.

A medium-fine grind size is recommended for a Moka pot, slightly coarser than an espresso grind but finer than a grain of table salt.

The key is to experiment with different grind sizes until you find the suitable one that works best for your particular Moka pot.

More Resource:


With so many questions about grind size for Moka pots, we have collected some of the most commonly asked questions here and answered them.

What Is the Difference Between A Coarse Grind And A Fine Grind For Moka Pot?

The grind size is essential when brewing coffee with a Moka Pot. A coarse grind will result in a weaker cup of coffee, while a fine grind will produce a stronger cup.

To get the best results with your Moka pot, it’s recommended to use a medium-fine grind size. This grind should be slightly coarser than an espresso grind, but finer than the grain of table salt.

What Happens If the Grind Size Is Too Fine or Too Coarse In Moka Pot Brewing?

If the grind size is too coarse, the water won’t be able to extract enough flavor from the beans, resulting in a weak cup of coffee.

On the other hand, if the grind size is too fine, it can clog up your Moka Pot and cause over-extraction. That can lead to an overly bitter cup of coffee.

Does Roast Level Influence Moka Pot Grind Size?

Yes! The roast level does influence the ideal grind size for Moka Pot brewing. The lighter the roast the finer you need to grind for optimum extraction.

Comparatively, lighter roasts are harder to extract than darker roasts. Hence, a darker roast needs to be grounded a bit coarser.


Sujit Modak

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