Electric Kettles 101: The Buying Guide for Coffee Lovers

words Alexa Wang

Coffee aficionados often want to make the perfect brew at home, and yet it is possible to go overboard with costly, specialized equipment to achieve this.

The more compact, versatile option is to invest in an electric kettle, and pair this with a simple solution like a V60 dripper.

An electric kettle is one of the top Christmas gifts for coffee lovers, but if you’ve never bought one before, you might not know what to look for. To help out, here are some of the electric kettle benefits explored, along with advice on how to narrow down your options.

coffee kettle

Image Source: Pixabay

The main electric kettle advantages

One of the biggest selling points of choosing an electric kettle rather than a fully-fledged coffee machine is that you can use this gadget for much more than brewing beans.

You will be able to make all sorts of hot drinks, and also have the option to boil water for use in general cooking, for example.

Another perk is the amount of control you get over the brewing process. There are all sorts of techniques to consider, and a host of manual coffee brewing gadgets to go along with your kettle.

This means that you are not committed to the kinds of coffee made by a dedicated machine, but can experiment and find what floats your boat.

Lastly, a kettle will take up far less space on your kitchen countertops than a lot of coffee machines. So if you don’t have much room for essential appliances, it is the answer to your prayers.

Exploring electric kettle varieties

The first thing to point out when considering electric kettles is that they come in all shapes and sizes, and also occupy a number of price points.

It is perfectly fine to pick a basic, budget option if money is tight, but be aware that bog-standard kettles will not provide you with any additional controls which you might require for your coffee-making purposes.

Most will simply heat up the water to boiling point when turned on, and give you no indication of the exact temperature of the water, meaning you might require a separate thermometer if you want to be precise with your pouring.

If your budget is a little bigger, it can be worth spending a little more for an electric pour-over kettle which has a combination of a coffee-friendly gooseneck spout and the right internal components to not only let you see the temperature of the water in real time, but actively control it.

For example, if you want to brew to 90 degrees, you can set this as an option and let the kettle do the rest.

Of course there is debate over the right temperature to brew coffee at anyway, so do your research and don’t be afraid to experiment to get the flavors you crave.

Considering other methodological matters

Using an electric kettle to make coffee is not just about the water and the features of the device itself, but also the other components of the coffee-making experience, as mentioned earlier.

Pouring just-boiled water over a V60 dripper with a filter and your grounds of choice onboard requires that you use a circular motion to apply the liquid, for example. Likewise if you prefer an aeropress, a different set of tactics is required.

Real coffee converts will also filter and weigh their water before boiling, as well as grinding their own beans. So the amount of equipment you need can add up quickly if you get serious about manual coffee brewing. Finding pleasure in this process will make it all worthwhile.


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