French Press Vs. Instant Coffee (What is Better and When?)

Last Updated on February 2, 2022 by John Moretti

Instant and French press coffee are two of the popular yet entirely different coffee brewing methods.

As the name implies, instant coffee is a quick way to make coffee, and it also offers more flavor options. However, it doesn’t always offer bold flavor. On the other hand, the French press is a classic coffee, requiring more work to create.

This article will tell you about French Press and instant coffee, their differences in detail, along with their pros and cons. So, let’s jump into it!

French Press Coffee Vs. Instant Coffee

French Press Coffee Vs. Instant Coffee Quick Overview

The brewing process of French Press is a lot longer than instant coffee. You can make instant coffee within a minute, and you also don’t need to deal with any leftovers to clean.

Not only do you need to clean the plunger device, but you also need to clean leftover grounds up in case of the French Press, and it adds up to the total time. The French Press can also offer a stronger flavor depending upon your grounds. Additionally, you can also over-extract the coffee grounds easily and end up with a bitter taste.

The French Press could be your best choice if you like to perform experiments to achieve the best possible results. On the other hand, Instant coffee will be a better option for busy people who can’t spend much time on the brewing process.

When The French Press Should Be Your Choice?

  • If you’re a coffee lover and also into its craft, then the French Press is a good option for you.
  • If you’re a picky drinker and can’t compromise on your coffee taste, you can use the French Press.

When The Instant Coffee Should Be Your Choice?

  • If you have a very busy routine and can’t spare time to make the French Press, instant coffee will suit you better.
  • If you’re on a tight budget, instant coffee is an excellent option for you as it’s inexpensive.

What is French Press?

French Press Coffee

The French Press is a popular brewing method that people use to make incredibly tasty coffee without any barista training. It was invented back in the 1920s in Italy. It creates flavorful and smooth coffee.

Essentially hot water and ground coffee beans are used to make French Press. But you need to follow the right technique to achieve the best possible taste.

How French Press Works?

Using French Press

Using French Press might seem a little intimidating, but it’s actually very easy. All you need is the French Press, coffee grinds of your choice, and hot boiling water (preferably between 195 to 205 degrees F.

The key to achieving the best results is to have the perfect coffee ground to water ratio. That’s why it’s recommended to measure your water and coffee ground before starting the process. Ideally, you should use 6 ounces of water and 2 tablespoons of coffee grounds.

In order to start the brewing process, you’ll need to steep coffee grounds in a container with boiling water. Then, you’ll need to use the metal plunger with a mesh filter to separate the actual coffee from the grounds.

This brewing method is also known as immersion brewing as the coffee emerges in water. It seems very simple, but it’s essential to keep the following pros and cons in mind.


  • You can use this method to make coffee with more caffeine quantity and offer a stronger and richer flavor.
  • The control that the French press gives you is probably its biggest advantage. You can change the water to coffee ground ratio to change the taste as desired.
  • It allows you to make up to 8 cups with this method simultaneously.
  • The ideal time to complete the French Press method is 4 minutes, and the longer you let it sit, the stronger the taste will be.
  • Most French presses are very easy to use compared to other coffee brewing machines and are also affordable.
  • Other than hot coffee, you can use the French Press to brew loose-leaf tea and cold brew coffee.


  • It’s very difficult to get the same taste every time with French Press. That’s because the coffee taste depends upon so many different variables.
  • You can also end up with some sediment if you don’t pay attention to your brewing process.
  • The cleaning process of the French Press is time-consuming, and you also need to discard the used grounds.
  • While the French Press is relatively easy to use, it’s not all about pressing the button. You need to make sure that you use the right grind size and right temperatures to enjoy the desired taste.

What is Instant Coffee?

Instant Coffee

Other than the coffee machine and grounds, there’s not much about instant coffee that goes into it. Thanks to the Nespresso and Keurig devices, it has become a popular coffee in the last decade.

You need to use pre-brewed coffee beans to make instant coffee. These coffee beans are dried, and you need to rebrew them yourself. It’s an excellent option for people who are always on the go because you can make it within seconds.

How is Instant Coffee Made?

Using Instant Coffee

Primarily, there are two different methods to make instant coffee.

  • The first method is called spray drying, which starts by roasting and grinding coffee beans. Then these beans are brewed and sprayed through dry and hot air (at 480 degrees F) in a mist. Resultantly the coffee turns into small dried crystals, which are called instant coffee.
  • The second method is called freeze-drying which is a bit more complex than the first one. It involves some additional steps, such as cooking the coffee into an extract after brewing. Then the coffee extracts are chilled, providing it with slushie-like consistency. After that, the coffee is turned into ice by chilling again and broken down into small particles, which are vaporized to make the instant coffee.

The second method creates more stable and aromatic coffee, and that’s why it’s also more popular. Aside from cost and time efficiency, instant coffee comes with the following pros and cons.


  • You can use a simple coffee maker to make instant coffee in less than a minute. So, it’s all about pressing buttons a couple of times.
  • It’s one of the most popular types of coffee, and it comes in a range of different flavors.
  • You can buy it from pretty much any grocery store and coffee shop.
  • All you need to do is add coffee grounds and the required amount of water to your machine. Then the machine will do the rest and provide you with a cup of coffee.
  • It is also cheaper than the rest of the coffee types.
  • Unlike many other coffee types, including the French Press, instant coffee doesn’t quickly lose its flavor. You can place the leftover coffee in your refrigerator to drink it later.
  • Instant coffee machines are very easy to clean as you only need to throw away the used grounds.


  • Instant coffee contains less caffeine, and you can’t enjoy a stronger flavor which is possible with the French Press. That’s why it also offers a weak flavor.
  • It loses a huge number of antioxidants because of all the processing it goes through.
  • Some instant coffees also contain some chemical compounds.
  • Instant coffee makes more waste than other types of coffee, so it can be dangerous for the environment.