Can I Use Regular Coffee Filters In a Chemex?

A coffee mixer is an exciting purchase. But, can you save money and use regular coffee filters in a Chemex?

A close up of a coffee cup, with Chemex and Coffee Filter - use regular coffee filters in a chemex
Chemex Filter

You recently upgraded from your normal pour-over to a flashier Chemex coffee maker. With time, you realize you have to make visits to the mall to reuse Chemex filters.

But what should you do when your supply runs out? Can you use regular coffee filters in a Chemex while a new box is on order?

The answer is yes but there is more to it. A Chemex is designed in such a way to hold a Chemex filter. However, to cover the niche of the expensive Chemex filters, other companies have developed coffee filters that can fit in a Chemex.

Therefore, you do not have to worry about having to look for a Chemex filter to brew your favorite cup of coffee. At the same time, if you can easily access a Chemex filter, the better.

Keep reading to find out the best regular filters to use in a Chemex and why a Chemex filter is recommended for a Chemex. This article will also help you learn how to use a Chemex coffee brewer, the impact of filters on the taste of your coffee, and devour more on matters filters and Chemex.

Table Of Contents

The Best Regular Coffee Filter To Use On A Chemex

As stated above, it is possible to use a normal coffee filter in place of a Chemex filter. However, for sustainable results, you will have to use a specific coffee filter. This is because other coffee filters have been known to collapse since they are not stable on the glass frame of the Chemex.

The recommended regular coffee filter for the Chemex is the Able Kone coffee filter (see my reviews). This stainless steel filter is built to fit a Chemex coffee maker. However, it can fit on any other brewer of your choice.

The filter fits 6, 8, and 10 cups of Chemex coffee. Moreover, the Kone filter has many tiny holes that produce coffee with tiny coffee particles, oils, and sediments.

Its coffee comes with a taste resembling the French press. Although the quality of coffee brewed by this filter is higher as compared to other regular filters, the coffee from Chemex filters is much more superior.

Purchasing the Abel Kone filter is not enough to experience that delicate and complex taste of coffee from a Chemex. You have to follow some procedures. To start, you will need a good grinder. The coffee used in the Kone filter should be more finely ground than coffee on other regular grinders.

This is because finely ground coffee also acts as a filter. As such, fine particles of coffee linger longer on the basket interacting with the full flavor of the coffee. Eventually, the coffee drains evenly from all sides of the filter, this helps to achieve a cleaner coffee.

Besides that, when pouring the water, it is recommended that you pour it at intervals of a one-minute pose. This allows the ground coffee to be fully wet and bloom. As such, the best extracts of coffee are obtained when water lingers longer on the spot of the filter.

The recommended ratio of coffee to water is 25g of finely grounded coffee to 400g of water. In case you do not follow these instructions, you may end up with a weak coffee.

Therefore, in case you want to use regular filters on your Chemex, this is the best option. Its coffee comes close to that of Chemex coffee.

Why Regular Filters Are Not Recommended For Your Chemex

two stack of coffee filters
Regular filter defeats the purpose of the Chemex

First, the purpose of purchasing a Chemex beats the reason to use a regular filter on it. Chemex has built a good reputation for producing an incredibly clean drip of coffee. However, the aesthetic features of the Chemex, that is, glass vessel and wooden handle have little to do with the quality of coffee brewed.

As such, the filter is the brewer; it is the secret behind the thin texture of coffee with an explosive floral taste.

Therefore, using a regular filter means that you are brewing regular coffee in a glass vessel. If you are to experience the magical Chemex coffee, you will have to use a Chemex filter to brew.

Second, the Chemex filter produces the cleanest most neutral top-notch coffee. Unlike other regular filters, this filter is thicker and unbleached. Therefore, the output coffee has fewer sediments and leaves a cleaner cup as compared to the Abel Kone filter.

This is precisely the primary purpose of purchasing a Chemex. It, however, can only be achieved by using a Chemex filter.

Third, unlike regular filters, the Chemex filter is designed to specifically fit the spout of the glass vessel. Looking at the filter, it has a ‘wing' on the square filter that makes it easier to lift the filter with coffee residues after brewing your coffee. This is unlike other regular coffee filters that have been known to collapse when lifted.

Moreover, the Chemex filter has a heavyweight that keeps it from collapsing into the spout once the grounded coffee is fully wet. This, in turn, prevents the percolation of the coffee on the brewing surface.

Therefore, it is quite clear that the quality of coffee from a Chemex filter used in a Chemex is unmatchable. However, given your circumstance, there is a plan B- the Kone filter. Do not shy away from the Chemex coffee maker just because of the expensive Chemex filters.

Step To Step Guide Of Using A Chemex

Now that you know about the Chemex filter and its substitute, it is important to know how to use a Chemex. In this article, we recognize that there may be first-time users of a Chemex coffee maker. The following is a detailed guide to using your Chemex

Step1: Boil water to 205 degrees and allow it to settle for 30 minutes

Step 2: Unwrap your Chemex filter and place it on the spout of the glass body in such a way that the 3 -layered side is consistent with the spout.

Step 3: Pour water on the inside of the filter. This ensures it adheres to the glass and that you get rid of the papery taste. Pour the drained water.

Step 4: Pour finely ground coffee on the filter. Shake the set up to allow the grounds to settle. The recommended grams of coffee is 70g

coffee filters in a chemex

Step 5: Set a timer. Start pouring water to the grounded coffee; pour just enough water to wet the coffee. Let the water sit for about 45 seconds before pouring more. This step is the blooming step of coffee.

The hot eater forces the grounded coffee to release explosive gasses explaining the bubbles that form at the top and the sweet aroma of coffee.

Step 6: After the first 45 seconds, proceed to pour more water. Be careful not to pour water on the edge of the filter or directly into the center of the filter. In case the level of water rises to the rim of the filter, allow it to drain to the glass beaker.

Stop pouring water when your timer reads 2:45 minutes

Step 7: Allow the poured water to drain into the beaker. When it is all drained, remove the Chemex filter and discard it together with the coffee residue. To know the size of your grounded coffee, if it takes more than 4.00 minutes to settle, the grounds were probably too fine.

If it takes less than 3.00 to settle then the grounds might have been course. As such, make the necessary adjustment when brewing next.

Do Different Filters Contribute To The Taste Of The Coffee?

Different filters affect the taste of your coffee; this is not only limited to Chemex filters as mentioned above but to all filters. There are different types of filters, ranging from metallic to paper filters and oxygenated filters. When it comes to taste, filters play the greatest role.

To start, if you are looking for a more natural taste of coffee, then the oxygenated coffee filters, like the Melitta Oxygen bleached filter would come in handy.

Melitta #2 Cone Coffee Filters, White, 100 Count
  • CONE COFFEE FILTERS: These super premium Melitta cone coffee filters fit all 2-6 cup electric – as well as most 1 cup cone-style pour-over coffee makers. Our filters trap more bitter oils & impurities for a better cup of coffee. Naturally whitened. Chlorine free.
  • ADVANCED DESIGN: Our cone coffee filters feature Microfine Flavor Enhancing perforations that allow the full coffee flavor to filter through & a double crimped filter design to help protect against bursting.
  • QUALITY FILTERS: Our cone, basket and single serve filters are all designed to brew rich, flavorful coffee. They are all compostable & made of high quality paper that won't tear for mess-free brewing.
  • PERFECT BREWING: Our products are designed to provide the perfect brewing experience with a complete selection of cone coffee filters, pour-over coffee filters, basket coffee filters, single serve coffee filters & tea filters.
  • JOIN THE PURSUIT FOR BETTER COFFEE: Melitta is dedicated to providing the ultimate coffee experience with our premium coffee filters, coffee pods, pour-over brewers, coffee makers & premium coffees.

The Hario V60 (see Amazon) made in Japan is known for producing a citrus taste. The Sock Cloth Filter, on the other hand, has been called out for an undesirable wet wool coat flavor. As such, this is one of the poor quality filters.

Hario V60 Ceramic Coffee Dripper, Size 02, White
  • Durable, ceramic body retains heat to help ensure a constant temperature throughout the brewing cycle.
  • Cone shape helps to better accentuate coffees with floral or fruit flavor notes.
  • Spiral ribs allows for maximum coffee expansion.
  • Large single hole can change coffee taste according to the speed of water flow.
  • Designed and manufactured in Japan

To add to this list is the Melitta Unbleached Natural (see amazon) which is known for the strongest woody sweetness and the Chemex filters whose floral notes, and natural taste cannot be emphasized enough.

Bottom line, before brewing any coffee, make sure you run water through the filter to get rid of the papery taste first.

Can I Use Regular Coffee Filters In A Chemex FAQs

Does the Chemex coffee maker come with mixers?

Chemex coffee mixers are sold as a different entity from the Chemex filters. As such, after purchasing your Chemex, you will have to go the extra mile and purchase Chemex filters.

Where do I purchase a Chemex and Chemex filters?

Chemex and Chemex filters are easily available at coffee shops, especially those that roast their beans or use artisan beans. However, in case you are looking for bigger retailers, you can purchase them from, Wal Mart, Cost Plus World Market, Bed, Bath, and Beyond. They are also available online on Amazon.