moka pot

Moka pot is one of the most popular coffee makers in the world and every coffee aficionado should learn more about this delicious coffee maker. Moka pot brews coffee by boiling method and therefore it has its own characteristics along with other benefits. In this article, we will try to give you everything you need to know about this groundbreaking coffee maker.

What Is Moka Pot?

Moka pot is a coffee maker that is also called stovetop espresso maker that brews the coffee by passing boiling water pressurized by steam through ground coffee. The name “Moka pot” comes from the Yemeni city “Mocha” and it was invented by an Italian engineer Alfonso Bialetti in 1933. After being introduced, it has become one of the most popular coffee makers in Italy and in the world. Today, Bialetti Industries still producing the same coffee maker under the name of “Moka Express”.

After being born in Italy, Moka Pot spread over the world, especially in Europe and Latin America. Its design has become iconic day by day and is displayed in industrial art and design museum. This Italian coffee maker comes in different sizes and the original design is made from aluminum with Bakelite handles.

The Moka pot is consists of a lower chamber in which the water boils, a filter that filters the coffee grounds with water, an upper chamber in which the Moka coffee ends up, and a lid on top of the upper chamber.

Variations Of The Moka Pot

Although Moka pots are usually used over a flame and usually made from aluminum, they can be sometimes made from stainless steel or other materials.

When it comes to modified versions of the Moka pot, the first model that comes to mind is “Brikka”, which is manufactured by Bialetti. Brikka has a weighted valve as a pressure regulator on top of the nozzle that helps pressure to build up inside of the water tank similar to a pressure cooker. Pressure builds up more quickly in this model because there is much less leakage of vapor compared to the standard stovetop coffee maker. The final product in this model is similar to espresso and has more crema.

Another variation is “Mukka Express” which is also produced by Bialetti makes milk frothy and mixes the milk with the coffee during the brewing process. The name “Mukka” comes from the Italian for milk-cow, “mucca”.

5 Reasons To Use Moka Pot

  1. Darks And Medium-Dark Roasts Brew Well In A Moka Pot: Many people choose dark roasts because dark roasts take milk and sugar very well and dark roast is more close to the real coffee taste. This might seem a redundant reason but now that we often use a dark roast, choosing an espresso pot as a brewing method wouldn’t be a mistake.Dark and medium-dark roasts taste like nutty, earthy, and chocolate which makes them a little bit bitter than lightly roasted coffee. What’s more, lighter roasts need lower temperature water which is not available when you use a Moka pot. Therefore, using light roasts with boiling water of the Moka pot will give you a poor cup of coffee.
  2. Using Moka Pot Is Very Easy: As we explained earlier, the Moka pot consists of very basic elements and is very easy to use. However, it is not the easiest method available. It is slightly harder to use than a French Press but it wouldn’t be a problem if you are a patient person. By allowing a little time, you can brew some great stovetop coffee at your home.To express how easy it is, we can just fit the brewing process into one paragraph. You add the hot water into the lowest chamber and heat it. Once it heats up, the pressure of the heat will push the water upwards allowing it to steep the coffee grinds. After this, it will slowly go to the spigot which is connected to the upper chamber and there it will start overflowing. When the gurgling sound slowly disappears, your coffee is ready. As you can see, brewing a stovetop espresso with a Moka pot is not as hard as you think.
  3. You Can Brew Strong, Espresso-Like Coffee: As the title describes, if you like a strong cup of coffee, using Moka pot is one of the best brewing methods that you can use. It can produce strong coffee and maybe crema like an espresso.
  4. You Can Use Moka Pot Almost Everywhere: Another reason to use Moka Pot is that it is portable unlike an espresso machine or other coffee makers. All you need is a fire to use a Moka pot so you can use make some Moka pot coffee even on a camping trip. Unfortunately, you can’t use an electric version of the Moka pot everywhere but the standard version can meet your expectations very well. What’s more, cleaning the stovetop coffee maker is also really easy because it consists of very simple parts.
  5. Moka Pots Are Easy To Find And Cheap: Another advantage of using a stovetop coffee maker as known as Moka pot is that you can find them almost everywhere and they are cheap compared to other coffee makers. You can even find a Moka coffee maker at the flea market or at a yard sale.

Pros and Cons Of Using Moka Pot

Easy to cleanDifficult to control quality
PortableYou need a good burr grinder to produce a fine texture
CheapThe pressure is not enough to create a espresso with crema
Aluminum body can preserve the heatHard to use with a lighter roasts
Can create a rich, thick and strong coffee
Easy to find

Moka Pot vs. French Press

Although both of them may seem similar, they have many differences between them actually. Firstly, while the French press is used by gourmet coffee lovers, the Moka pot, also known as the stovetop coffee pot, is preferred by people who are passionate about super bold and concentrated flavor.

If you want something that tastes sharp like espresso we recommend you using Moka pot. However, if you are looking for something that is more flavorful, go for a French press.

Brewing MethodEase Of UseControl Over BrewSizes AvailableBrewing TimeResulting BrewMaterial
Moka PotPressureMediumLittle1-12 cup5-7 minutesStrong and sharpAluminium, stainless steel
French PressSteepingMediumHigh8 oz, 16 oz, 23 oz, 36 oz5 minutesFull bodiedStainless steel, glass, plastic

Which Grind Size Should You Use For Moka Pot?

Before learning how to make espresso on the stove you should learn which grind size you should use for your Moka pot coffee. Although making coffee using a Moka pot is similar to espresso, that doesn’t mean you should use the same grind size. While you should use very small coffee grounds with an espresso machine, you should use medium-sized ground coffee for Moka pot because water needs more room to pass through.

How Much Coffee Can A Moka Pot Make?

Although the size of the Moka pot varies, it can make 12 cups of coffee. The Moka Pots that Bialetti produces are available in different sizes that range from 1 cup to 12 cup pot. However, remember that the Moka pot creates a concentrated brew so you can dilute your coffee with some water to increase the amount of coffee.

How To Use A Moka Pot

As we said earlier, making a coffee using a stovetop coffee maker is not hard, in fact, it is really easy. Before we start the instructions, there are some things that you need in advance.

    • Coffee Beans
    • Coffee Grinder
    • Moka Pot
    • Damp Towel
    • Stovetop


  1. Fill Your Moka Pot With Water: Fill the lower chamber of your Moka pot with cold water just below the valve. If you overfill, the coffee will be waterlogged and it will affect the flavor so be careful.
  2. Grind Your Coffee Beans: If you don’t have a coffee grinder, you can use ground coffee but we suggest you grind your coffee beans by yourself.When you grind your coffee beans, you should grind them to a fine consistency but don’t make them too fine otherwise you can clog your stove coffee percolator, that is, Moka pot.
  3. Add Ground Coffee To The Moka Pot: Insert the funnel into your Moka pot and fill it with ground coffee. Don’t overfill the stainer and don’t tamp the coffee, otherwise, it can create too much pressure in the Moka pot.
  4. Prepare The Rest Of Your Moka Pot: After adding ground coffee, tightly screw the upper part of the pot onto the base. When you secure the pot, make sure that you are screwing it on by holding the pot, not the handle, otherwise, you can break the handle.
  5. Heat The Moka Pot: Select a heater that fits the bottom of your Moka pot. If you are using a gas stovetop, make sure that the flame is not bigger than the bottom of your Moka pot. As you can understand, the heating process is one of the most important parts of learning how to make stovetop coffee.During the heating process, you will hear a gurgling sound. To get a full flavor of the espresso, heat it slowly. If the heat is too high, the coffee will start sputtering which means pouring and it may taste burnt.
  6. Check The Coffee Level And Stir: When the top of your Moka pot is full of coffee and you can see hazel brown foam, remove the Moka pot from the stove. The foam appears just before the coffee is completely done so if you see foam, that means your coffee is ready.Before pouring the coffee, remember to give your coffee a stir with a small spoon.
  7. Serve The Coffee: Now that your coffee is ready, you are ready to serve. You can drink your boldly-flavored, robust, and heavy-bodied coffee.

Wrapping Up

In this article, we tried our best to explain what is a Moka pot and how it works. We tried to give you everything you needed to know about Moka pot and how to make espresso on the stove. Now that you have learned how to use a Moka pot and how it works, you can experiment with it at your home and find new tastes! If you have questions or suggestions, let us know in the comments section!

Moka Pot Brewing: Complete Guide To Stovetop Coffee Maker

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