Here’s how to make cowboy coffee on your next hike or camping trip. This is probably the simplest way to brew a cup of coffee. All you’ll need is a pot and a heat source. And some ground coffee, of course.
How to Make Cowboy Coffee
- Time to first sip: From 2 to 3 minutes
- Type of Coffee: Strong and aromatic black coffee
- Coffee grind: Medium to coarse
- Gear required: Coffee pot
- Difficulty: Easy
Cowboy Coffee Tips: After brewing is finished slowly pour a little cold water on the grounds to help them settle to the bottom of the pot.
Cowboy coffee is similar to Turkish and Bripe coffee. The coffee grounds are immersed in the water and are heated to boiling or near boiling.
This makes a strong coffee and can be adjusted to your flavor preferences, like most brewing methods. Cowboy coffee is a popular way to make coffee while camping.
It’s very easy to make and does not require special equipment. You can make it in a regular pot or an enamel coffee pot.
There are a couple of ways to make cowboy coffee:
- Some cowboy coffee lovers like to mix the coffee and water together and bring it to a boil.
- Others bring the water to a boil and remove it from the heat, then add the coffee and let it brew for a few minutes.
- Some warm the water, add the grounds, and then let them boil together. It’s really up to you, so play around with the method and see what you like best.
The following recipe describes the last method.
Cowboy Coffee Recipe
- Put your water on the heat and when it gets warm add the grounds (usually a tablespoon or two for each cup).
- Stir the mix so the grounds are good and saturated.
- Bring to a rolling boil for 2 or 3 minutes.
- Remove from the heat, let it sit for a minute and then pour a little cold water over the floating grounds to make them sink to the bottom.
Learn more about making cowboy coffee and how to avoid bad cowboy coffee.
Making a big pot for a lot of people uses a lot of coffee. The general rule is one or two tablespoons per cup of water.
Acids in coffee are released more when it reaches a boil, meaning that you’re actually getting more acid in your cup.
So to reduce the acid you would want to avoid boiling the coffee grounds. I think the reason this method is so loved by its fans is that they prefer a bitter or acidic flavor to their coffee.
Here are 244 delicious words to describe coffee
More reading: Here’s how to make iced coffee and cold brew coffee.
Have you made cowboy coffee before? I would love to hear how it went for you.
- About the Author
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Bryan Haines is a co-founder and writer on Tasty Plate – and is working to make it the best food blog in the world.
While living in South America, Bryan enjoyed learning about new foods and preparation methods. Back in Nova Scotia, he enjoys growing food in the backyard. And then preparing it with traditional (and non-traditional) methods and ingredients.
He is also co-founder of Storyteller Media, a company he started with his wife, Dena.