How Much Ground Coffee Per Cup? Making the Perfect Cuppa Everytime!

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Sounds like a pretty straightforward thing right? Turns out making coffee involves quite a bit of math. And here I thought I won’t have to calculate ever again after grad school!

No worries for you as we have gathered everything you need to know into one bite-size article. So within the next 5 minutes, you will learn how to make up to 12 cups of coffee effortlessly. And yes, you won’t have to calculate a single thing!

Making the Perfect Cup of Coffee: The Golden Ratio

coffee beans to ground coffee ratio

We all have heard of the golden ratio of faces. But did you know that coffee has its own golden ratio too? It’s basically the ratio between the coffee and the water. 

As we know, adding too much or too little water or coffee can ruin the taste. Some people are instinctively good at this. They just throw some random amount of coffee into the water and voila! A great cup of coffee is ready.

For us normal folks, we need a bit of help. The Speciality Coffee Association of America (SCAA) created the golden ratio for us folks. 

According to them, the ideal ratio between coffee and water is 1:15 to 1:18. This means you need approximately 150ml of water for 8.3g of coffee.

If this seems too complex then don’t bother. We have created a table with different cup numbers and their required ratios in the next part. You will find ground coffee to water ratio, whole bean to ground coffee ratio, and all other ground coffee measurements there. So keep reading if you are interested!

To know more about this, check out tips for making coffee in a percolator.

So How Much Coffee Per Cup?

Exactly how much coffee ground to use per cup? Although it can depend on a multitude of things, there is a basic guideline to follow. 

Keep in mind your coffee can taste different depending on the type of coffee beans you use, the brewing method, your coffee machine, and even the type of water for the coffee. So it’s not a linear result. 

But as most of us use coffee machines, they require exact ratios and numbers. 

Here are all the calculations you need to make any amount of coffee:

Number of CupsCoffee Ground (grams)Coffee Ground (tablespoons)Water(oz)

Need to Make Tons of Coffee? Use a Percolator!

how much ground coffee per cup

If you have guests around and need to make more than a few cups, instead of using your coffee machine, go for a percolator. It’s faster and easier than any other method. 

Yes, coffee percolators can seem rather intimidating. trust us, it’s not.  They are a very old-fashioned coffee maker that has been around since the 1800s. The best thing is, no matter how much coffee you are making, the method remains the same. 

Here’s how you can use ground coffee for a percolator to make coffee in no time:

  1. Open your percolator and fill up the main pot with tap water. Most percolators come with markings inside the pot to help you measure properly. 
  2. Either your percolator has built-in filters or you need to use one of your own. Insert the filter at this point. You can also use paper filters to collect maximum sediments. 
  3. Add coffee grounds to the filter basket. Use our chart to know exactly how much coffee per cup to use. 
  4. Make sure to evenly distribute coffee grounds. We prefer coarsely ground coffee over fine grind as the former provides better taste. 
  5. Put the lid on and turn on your percolator. If it’s a stovetop percolator, keep the flame at medium and keep an eye on it until it starts to boil. For an electric percolator, you need 50-60 seconds of brewing time per cup. 

And there you have it. Making coffee using a percolator is that easy. You can check out this video to further understand the process.

Our Key Tips for the Perfect Coffee

how many ounces of ground coffee per cup

Making the perfect coffee is not just the water and coffee ratio. It involves a lot of other subtle things as well. Here are some of our tips for that:

Pick the Right Coffee Beans:

There are two types of coffee lovers. One who knows A to Z about coffee beans and the other who grabs whatever is available in the store. We think knowing and trying a few different types of coffee beans helps you to understand what you love and prefer. 

For starters, there are two basic types of coffee beans: Arabica and Robusta. Arabica is used in most coffee shops. It’s a great option with a nuanced flavor profile. 

This type of coffee bean does not produce the strongest type of coffee. It does not have that high caffeine content either. 

If you are looking for a stronger coffee, we recommend trying Robusta beans. They are more bitter and have a very strong taste. 

Looking for some strong coffee options? Check out What is the Strongest Coffee of 2021?

Use a Coffee Grinder:

Do you really need a home coffee grinder? The answer is yes. We do not recommend buying pre-ground coffee. 

They not only last only a few months, but the taste also is not very great either. Pre-ground coffee goes stale very quickly. So you end up with a bland-tasting coffee with a  watery, thin consistency. 

So instead buy unroasted/roasted coffee grounds and grind them each week. This will give you the best kick of flavor and caffeine and don’t forget how amazing freshly ground coffee smells. 

If you are looking for a good coffee grinder, check out our Baratza Encore vs Capresso Infinity coffee grinder review. 

Use a Quality Coffee Maker:

As a former instant coffee addict, I can understand why it feels so intimidating to own a coffee maker. Who wants to learn this complicated-looking machine for a cup of coffee? Oh, how wrong I was back then!

The truth is, coffee machines are really easy to operate. Most modern machines nowadays also come with pre-set features like espresso, double shot, and even dairy options like cappuccino or latte. 

So all it takes for you is to fill up the water tan and add some coffee grounds to it. Then press a button and your coffee is ready! It’s actually worth every penny for a coffee lover. 

Besides, are you even a coffee lover if you don’t have more than one coffee maker? 

Check out The Hottest Coffee Makers of 2021 to compare and pick your favorite.  

Milk and Its Alternatives:

As more and more people are turning towards plant-based milk options, it’s curious to know which of them works the best with coffee. 

Everyone has their preferred milk alternatives. We personally love almond and cashew milk for its sweet, creamy and nutty flavor. If you ask me, I have totally converted to almond milk as it actually tastes better than dairy. 

But there are actually tons of different options from soy milk to oat milk. To know more about this, check out our Best Coconut Milk Substitutes

One thing to keep in mind is, coffee is very acidic. So make sure to add milk first and then the coffee. This way the milk doesn’t curdle up and separate. 

If you are looking for a good coffee percolator, check out our best coffee percolator machine review

Frequently Asked Questions

01. How Much Caffeine is in a Tablespoon of Ground Coffee?

This can not be very specific as different types of coffee beans have different caffeine levels. But on average, a tablespoon of coffee has 7 mg-110 mg of caffeine. This is specifically for Arabica and Robusta beans. There are of course stronger coffee options but we are not talking about them. 

02. How Much Ground Coffee per Cup is Needed for French Press?

In general, it’s ideal to use a ratio of 1:15 of coffee to water. This means you should use 1 gram of coffee for every 15 grams of water. If you convert it to tablespoons, that would be around 3 tablespoons per cup. 

03. How to Measure Ground Coffee for Brewing?

We like to use a tablespoon for coffee grounds. So for each cup of coffee, use 1-2 tablespoons of coffee grounds. If your coffee is strong, use only a tablespoon. But for lighter beans like Arabica, you can go for 2 tablespoons. 

Most standard coffee makers actually mention the amount of coffee you need to add. So it’s not that complex to understand. 

04. How Much Ground Coffee is Needed for 12 Cups?

If you are wondering how much ground coffee is for 12 cups, the answer is pretty simple. You will need 18 tablespoons of coffee ground for 12 cups of water. 

This will make the perfect coffee every time. But depending on your preference you can add or reduce a few tablespoons here and there. 

05. Can You Use Ground Coffee in a Keurig? 

Yes, you can use ground coffee in your Keurig coffee maker. But you have to make sure the grind is not too fine and neither too coarse. Keurig is very specific so you have to grind your coffee accordingly. 


Now that you know exactly how much ground coffee per cup is needed, you are able to make the perfect coffee each time. And the best part is, our chart helps you to make any amount of coffee with the best ratio. 

Which coffee brewing method is your favorite? Do you use a percolator? Let us know in the comments below!

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