Moka Pot vs. Filter Coffee: What’s The Tastiest Brew?

Moka pot and filter coffee are very distinct experiences. Today we’re looking at some key differences between the two options, Moka pot vs. filter coffee.

Moka pot vs. filter coffee
Moka Pot vs. Filter Coffee

When you’re reaching for your morning cup of coffee, the method matters: some coffee lovers want as much of the good stuff in their system as quickly as possible, and some prefer to wait a little longer for a quality experience. Some coffee lovers enjoy the ritual of an involved brew, while some just want to press a button and be done. 

How do you know if you’d rather invest the extra time in brewing Moka pot coffee or if filter coffee is your ideal cup? Read on to find out.

Moka Pot vs. Filter Coffee: What Are They?

The first step towards deciding which coffee style you prefer is understanding the two styles in question a little better. Moka pots and filter-based coffee makers produce two different brews, thanks to the differences in how they operate. 

Moka pots are a type of stovetop brewer, with a water reservoir in the base, a metal filter basket for finely ground coffee on top of that, and a chamber to catch the brewing coffee, screwed onto the base. The resulting brew resembles espresso: thick and rich, though usually a higher volume than the individual shots that the average home espresso machine makes.

Filter coffee can be made in a few different ways: pour-over rigs are a type of filter coffee, and automatic drip brewers. In both cases, hot water drips or pours over a filter basket (often paper, sometimes plastic or metal), and brewed coffee collects in a carafe below.

The resulting brew is what many people associate with the standard cup of coffee in America: adaptable, quick, and consistent. Pour-over tends to have a richer flavor than automatic drip due to the more involved brewing process, but they are close in consistency.

What Moka Pot and Filter Coffee Have in Common

Ground coffee
Moka pot and filter coffee use ground coffee to deliver a satisfying brew

For some coffee lovers, coffee is coffee, and both the Moka pot and filter coffee delivers a satisfying brew. Both use hot water and ground coffee to produce a higher volume than–say–an espresso machine. They are also both fairly cost-effective solutions to making coffee at home. Moka pot coffee and filter coffee are versatile brews that you can adjust to your liking with milk, sugar, or whatever else you like to add.

Moka Pot vs. Filter Coffee: The Differences

The differences between the two types of coffee come down to brewing methods. Moka pots force hot water and steam upward through finely-ground coffee to produce an espresso-like brew, while filter coffee uses hot water dripped over the grounds from above. When choosing which you’d prefer, think about how much effort you want to put in and what kind of coffee experience you’re looking for.

Moka Pot CoffeeFilter Coffee
Slightly more complicated setupEasier setup, brewing handled by machine
Higher caffeine content by volumeSlightly lower caffeine content by volume
Thicker, more espresso-like coffeeEasier to vary the strength of the brewed coffee

What’s Better About Moka Pot Coffee?

Moka pot with ground coffee inside and with spoon beside it.
Moka pot coffee is a better choice for strong coffee lovers

The coffee out of a Moka pot is stronger, richer, and thicker than filter coffee. The Moka pot is essentially a lower-tech espresso maker that lets you make a large batch of espresso rather than a shot or two at a time. If you like your coffee strong, Moka pot coffee will give you better results.

What’s Better About Filter Coffee?

Top view of a filter coffee
Filter coffee offers a neutral strength of the brew

There are good reasons that filter coffee has become the top choice for most Americans: it’s easy, it’s consistent, and the strength of the brew is right down the middle: not super strong and not weak. Filter coffee is a better option if you want to drink a lot of coffee throughout your day, rather than having a cup or two of something really strong.

Who Should Drink Moka Pot Coffee?

Fans of espresso who want something closer to the texture and flavor they’re used to should definitely try Moka pot coffee for their everyday brew. The brewing method ensures a result that’s great for lattes, cappuccinos, and americanos alike. In addition, the equipment to make Moka pot coffee is much cheaper than the average espresso machine, making it an easy investment.

Who Should Drink Filter Coffee?

Filter coffee is utility coffee. If you’re someone who just wants to drink as much coffee as often as possible, filter coffee is the better option for you. It’s a good choice for people who like to add milk and sugar to their coffee as well; filter coffee has a more liquid consistency, meaning the flavors will marry more thoroughly.

All in all, if you want something simple and not too strong that you can add flavors and ingredients to without throwing off the balance, filter coffee is your friend.


  • Savannah McClelland

    Savannah is a coffee lover who took her appreciation of the brew to the next level starting in college, becoming a barista before combining her love of writing with her affection for a good brew. She has written for several publications including and TopTenz, and also works as a ghostwriter. Find Savannah on LinkedIn.