For years, I have been a fan of single-serve coffee makers. They are convenient, easy to use, makes fresh coffee fast. However, my coffee maker suddenly stopped working, which left me no choice but to brew my coffee using the pour over method. But then I realized I have no coffee filter on hand. I asked myself, are there some coffee filter substitutes I can use?

In desperate need of a quick caffeine boost, I scoured the internet for some coffee filter substitutes. It turns out, there are lots of alternatives out there. Many of them are reusable; hence, allowing you to save both your money and the planet.

I made a list of coffee filter alternatives you can use in your crisis situation. Some of them are even readily available in your home. Keep calm and carry on making your morning with one of these coffee filter substitutes.

Metal mesh reusable filters

Coffee filter substitutes: Cuisinart GTF Gold Tone Filter

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If you find yourself rolling your eyes every time you need to buy some paper, reusable filter is an excellent option. It is a good one-time investment that will save you from the hassle of constantly buying paper filters. They may be more expensive upfront, but you’ll be saving a ton of money in the long run. They are also environmentally friendly as they do not add to a huge pile of waste.

Overall, a reusable coffee filter provides a permanent fix to your coffee filter problems. Cuisinart GTF Gold Tone Filter and Medelco Cone Permanent Coffee Filter are two of the best filters available in the market.

Cheese cloth

Coffee filter substitutes: Cheese cloth

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If you’re looking for an alternative for your paper filter, try using cheese cloth. Cheese cloth is made of loosely woven cloth, which is primarily used in making cheese and cooking. If you cook a lot, you probably have it stashed in a drawer.

Cheese cloth is available in seven grades, ranging from open to extra fine weaves. The one with finer weaves would be an excellent choice for coffee brewing, as it prevents the coffee grounds from seeping through the cloth.

Muslin cloth

Coffee filter substitutes: Muslin cloth

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The next time you find yourself staring down an empty box of paper filters, here’s an awesome idea that you might want to try. All you need is a little bit of muslin cloth, a pair of scissors, needle and thread. You just need small piece of cloth to cut a cone-shaped filter out of it, and then sew both ends.

The whole thing is quick and easy to make. With this option, you can get back on the coffee brewing horse in minutes. What’s more? It’s eco-friendly.

Coffee Sock

Coffee filter substitutes: Coffee Sock

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Socks are another tried-and-true coffee filter replacement. Don’t go digging around in your sock drawer just yet. We’re not talking about your typical socks. You don’t want your coffee to taste like corn chips, right?

A coffee sock is a reusable filter made from organic cotton. It provides an innovative way to brew a heavenly, full-bodied cup of coffee.

Use it the same way you would a regular coffee filter. Sit back and watch in amazement as the sock filters the ground and fills your cup with a hearty cup of steaming coffee. It saves money, gets you coffee, and help the planet out in the process. It’s win-win.

Tea bags

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One of the advantages tea has over coffee is how easy it is to make. There is no need for fancy machines, tools, and coffee filters required for making tea. All you need is hot water, a tea bag, and cup – that’s it.

But what if we tell you that you can also do that with your coffee? Interesting, right? Start by grinding some of your favorite coffee beans on the finest setting, pour the grinds into a tea bag, and seal them. Make sure that you keep some in your cupboard or on your desk, so you can easily grab one when you need of a quick caffeine boost.

This brewing method is so convenient, you can enjoy coffee to-go. Fellow coffee lovers will love it.

Instant coffee

Coffee filter substitutes

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Nothing is more frustrating than reaching for your early morning blend, only to find out you don’t have any paper filters left. To avoid the frustration, you should always have a backup plan. This is where instant coffee comes in handy.

The next time you go grocery shopping, consider buying instant coffee. It does not require coffee filter. That means, you don’t have to go without your morning cup of joe, even if you run out of coffee filters. Having a few packets around will save you time and frustration.

Cowboy Coffee

Coffee filter susbstitutes: Cowboy Coffee

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Cowboy coffee is made with nothing more than coffee beans, water, and a pot. No coffee filter required. If you wake up one morning and realize you don’t have any coffee filter left, you can just make cowboy coffee instead. No need to go to the store or go around the house looking for coffee filter substitutes.

Although cowboy coffee gets a bad rap, there is no reason why you can’t enjoy a fine cup at home. You already have everything you need to make a good cup of coffee – water, high quality ground, a pot, and a heat source.

Coffee filter substitutes: Does paper towel work?

Coffee filter substitutes: Does paper towel work?

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Paper towels are a common remedy when you run out of coffee filters and you’re in desperate need of coffee. If you are to look closely, you may find that paper towels and coffee filters have similar characteristics. While they do have the same thickness and absorbency, they also have a number of differences.

The problem is that paper towels tear apart easily, especially when exposed to high heat. As such, you may need to strain the grounds before drinking it. Another cause of concern is that most paper products are loaded with contaminants. When used as a coffee filter, the chemicals can leak into the coffee.  

Most paper products are bleached using chlorine. This contaminant is detrimental to your health. Whenever possible, try any of the coffee filter substitutes listed above or just stick to regular coffee filters.