Guide to Siphon and Vacuum Coffee Makers

One of the most interesting coffee brewing methods is the siphon or vacuum brewing method. The coffee makers used in this method are often called siphon pots, siphon brewers, vacpots, or vacuum brewers. Though they have different names, they all have one thing in common, which is the method of drawing up water through the coffee grounds then back down finishing with a clean cup of coffee.

How Does a Siphon or Vacuum Coffee Maker Work?

Where to Buy

1. Grinder

Stainless Steel blades that can grind beans but also spices, herbs, nuts, grains and more; Lid activated safety switch for ease of use; 2-year warranty.

2. Burner

Boils a 250ml beaker of water in approx. 5 minutes. Burn rate is .9 grams per minute

When you look at a siphon coffee maker, it’s kind of difficult to decipher how it functions but once you learn how to use it, you’ll realize that it’s very simple.  A siphon or vacuum brewer has four basic parts which are, a bottom container, a top container, a syphon tube, and a filter.

There are two bulbs that sit atop one another being held by a stem. The bulb on the top has a large opening with a stem that feeds into a smaller opening on the lower bulb. The water is placed in the lower bulb while the coffee grounds are placed on the top bulb. The stem contains a seal that creates a vacuum within the lower bulb which holds the water. This is why it’s also called vacuum pot. A filter is placed at the bottom of the top bulb to allow the water to rise through it, subsequently releasing the brewed coffee back down into the bottom bulb.

The essentials needed to brew coffee using a siphon coffee maker are, coffee, grinder, and a burner. A thermometer may come in handy as well. Here is how the brewing method works.

First, water is added to the bottom container. Then it’s heated and the heated water creates vapor. The vapor then makes its way through the filter going to the top container. On the top container, coffee grounds are added to the water. Once the heat is removed, the water and coffee mixture on the top container will fall back through the bottom container passing through the filter. The coffee is purified by the filter, keeping the coffee grinds out of your cup of coffee.

Types of Siphon Coffee Makers and Heat Sources

There are different styles of siphon coffee makers, and the way they are heated depends on these styles. Today, there are two main types of modern siphon coffee makers which are the standalone and stovetop.

  • Stovetop: This is a siphon pot that is meant to be used on top of your electric or gas stove. Its bottom bowl is designed with a flat surface which allows the entire pot to be set on top of a flat burner. Stovetop brewers are easier to use and they are much simpler.
  • Standalone: This siphon brewer is designed for use with an external heat source such as butane or alcohol burner. Some standalone siphon coffee makers also have a heating element built into the stand. This type of coffee makers is more of a traditional style of coffee brewing experience.

Different Filters for Siphon Coffee Makers

Where to Buy
Cloth filters
Paper filters

1. Cloth filters

Enjoy the ritual of making your coffee in the traditional way that is made in Costa Rica. Thick material flannel cloth with wood handle, 2 Medium and 1 Large sized filters are included for your convenience

2. Paper filters

You can use it with these syphon : MCA-3 NCA-3 HTF-2.

A new siphon coffee maker usually includes a filter and some replacements for the filter material. Today, there are many kinds of filter you can use with siphon coffee makers. You can use them to replace the filtering device which came with your brewer if you’re not happy with it. Here are some of the filters you can find in the market.

  • Cloth: This filter is usually circular with a stitching on the outer edge and a tie string looped through to secure the filter to a metal or ceramic part of the filter at the top of the siphon tube. Cloth filters can be used up to a hundred times or more if handled with care.
  • Paper: Paper filters can be purchased separately. When you use it, you’ll end up with a coffee filtered just the auto drip. However, some does not like using paper filters because it can hinder some of the volatile oils and aromas from passing through into the final brew.
  • Glass: This is a long glass tube with a bulbous and rough middle. It sits inside the siphon tube with the bulbous part acting as the filter at the top of the tube. The coffee grounds will be trapped in the little channels between the bumps but still allowing the liquid to pass through.

The Best Siphon and Vacuum Coffee Makers

Now that you know how a siphon or vacuum coffee maker works, its different types and filters, maybe you want to invest in your own siphon coffee maker. Siphon coffee makers come in different sizes depending on your needs. Some are three-cup models and some are big which can make eight or more cups. To help you choose among the available siphon coffee makers in the market, here are some of the best ones we found.

Where to Buy
Bodum Vacuum Coffee Maker
Nispira Balance Siphon Coffee Maker
Yama Glass Stovetop Siphon Coffee Maker
Kitchen Aid Siphon Coffee Brewer

1. Bodum Vacuum Coffee Maker

Its exceptionally effective vacuum brewing method extracts all precious oils of your favorite coffee.

This coffee maker can brew delicious coffee within 5 to 11 minutes and it can serve from 4 to 8 cups. The vacuum brewing process of this coffee maker is entirely sealed ensuring that no aroma can escape. The brewing time and temperature are also perfectly calibrated to give you a perfect cup of coffee.

2. Nispira Balance Siphon Coffee Maker

NISPIRA Syphon Coffee Maker for 3-5 Espresso Cups (500ML- about 17 OZManufactured by NISPIRA. Solely Distributed by Coffee and Toy

This coffee maker has a beautiful silver and chrome color with a wood board base. It can make 3 to 5 espresso cups. It has a stylish design which makes it perfect to display on your countertop.

3. Yama Glass Stovetop Siphon Coffee Maker

Works on gas and electric rangetops; comes with wire diffuser for use on electric coil burners.

This siphon coffee maker has a 40-ounce capacity which can make 8 cups of coffee. It is made of heat resistant glass and handle. You can use it on gas and electric range tops. It produces a clean, rich, and smooth cup of coffee.

4. Kitchen Aid Siphon Coffee Brewer

Automated full immersion siphon brewing delivered through precise temperature and vacuum technology.

This coffee maker is made with premium glass and stainless steel accents. It also has a magnetic locking seal security which fastens the brew unit and carafe together. It has a precise temperature and vacuum technology which creates a bright, rich, and clean cup of coffee.

There are indeed a lot of ways to brew coffee and using a siphon or vacuum brewer is one of the most interesting among the other methods. We hope this guide will help you brew the perfect cup of coffee using your siphon coffee maker.