A coffee brewing dynamo
(By Kimi Boi - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=63516766)
There are so many choices for coffee brewing items and equipment out there. There are French Presses, and Chemex pour over devices. There are espresso machines of all size and shape. However, many opt for the AeroPress, providing a unique and nuanced way to make a superb cup of coffee. It’s no secret that the AeroPress makes for an excellent and delectable brew. Its novel method of using pressure and water creates a sublime cup of coffee.. But there is one aspect of this truly incredible machine that many are perplexed by. How do you clean it?
A well oiled machine
The AeroPress is certainly efficient. So much so that many claim that one does not need to clean an Aeropress that thoroughly nor that often, because the plunger wipes the interior of the column as you use it. The AeroPress is definitely efficient, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t Aeropress users out there who wouldn’t mind giving their coffee maker a bit of a wash every once in a while. AeroPress users who may have had a few “coffee bean malfunctions” here or there may also have an interest in how to clean the apparatus!
Both the official site for AeroPress and other sites online state that the AeroPress is safe on the dishwasher’s top shelf, and, as mentioned above, does not need a thorough cleaning due to its efficient interior plunger system. But, many users are telling a very different story. One that involves an unpleasant soap or detergent taste as a result of cleaning their AeroPress via the dishwasher.
When it comes to coffee and tea ware, dishwasher soap and detergent seem like friends but can leech into your item’s materials (in this case, plastic) and leave behind an unpleasant flavor. This leaves your next brewing to have a rather unpalatable soapy smell and taste (I learned this the hard way, too many times to count!). But then, what are some alternative ways to clean your AeroPress, OR to cleanse the soap flavor and scent from your AeroPress after you have sent it through the dishwasher a few times?
Bar Keeper’s Friend turned Barista’s Friend
Luckily some wise aeropress users have been able to zero in on a few solutions (pun intended) to this issue. One of which is using Bar Keeper’s Friend- which, as my (potentially unfunny) pun implies, is a cleaning solution in more ways than one.
Bar Keeper’s Friend is a cleaning agent that is perfect for clearing away baked-on stains as well as those dreaded tea stains. To utilize Bar Keeper’s Friend in management of your AeroPress, first, soak your AeroPress in the Bar Keeper’s Friend. Next, rinse it and wash it by hand thoroughly. Do not scrub your aeropress as the Bar Keeper’s Friend is an abrasive. After washing it by hand, give it another rinse with hot water only. By cleaning your AeroPress with Bar Keeper’s Friend, you will have a dazzlingly clean and soap-taste free AeroPress on your hands once again!
Homebrew your way to a fresher AeroPress!
An alternative cleaning method is to use Powdered Brewery Wash, another cleaning agent. You can pick this cleaner up from a home brewing supply store, or find it at an affordable price online. To use Powdered Brewery Wash, or, PBW and to give your AeroPress a nice and thorough cleansing, use the same technique as with the Bar Keeper’s Friend. Soak your AeroPress in the Powdered Brewery Wash, then, rinse it thoroughly with water and wash it by hand. No scrubbing or soap necessary.
With using Bar Keeper’s Friend or Powdered Brewery Wash, you should use gloves if you have sensitive skin.
Vinegar for a Simple Cleaning
Another alternative method is to use hot water and vinegar solution to give your AeroPress a nice clean out. With this method, make sure to run hot water through your AeroPress just to clear away any lasting vinegar. This method is reserved for standard or basic cleaning. For the most part rinsing or using vinegar should do the trick, but for ridding your AeroPress of soap flavors or giving it an industrial level revitalization, opt for the Bar Keeper’s Friend or Powdered Brewery Wash.
Good cleaning means good coffee
With a quality product like an AeroPress, good maintenance is tantamount to good coffee. While some official cleaning instructions do suggest cleaning your AeroPress by placing it on the top shelf of your dishwasher, it may be wiser to forego this method. But now, with the methods we outlined, you can not just rejuvenate your AeroPress from an overly staining brewing, but also cleansing the unpleasant flavor of soap from your AeroPress in case you have tried the dishwasher route once or twice before already.
You never have to worry about the taste of detergent or soap leeching into your coffee again by using Bar Keeper’s Friend, Powdered Brewery Wash or good old fashioned vinegar to keep your AeroPress in top condition. This incredible coffee making device will continue to serve as a prime instrument for crafting a perfect cuppa, provided adequate maintenance and care.
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