Don’t let challenging coffee measurements stop you from enjoying a freshly brewed cup. If you dislike doing the math, read this article for help. We made the calculations so that you can brew and enjoy the coffee.
This article summarizes the recommended coffee measurement for almost any amount of coffee you need to make. All our measurements are based on ground coffee, so if you’re working with whole beans, you can use our calculations as is if you’re measuring by weight, but adjust it to ¾ if you’re measuring by volume.
Measuring Units Used for Coffee
Measuring Units Used for Water
Cups (standard of four oz per cup)
While many of us drink smaller cups of coffee, standard brewers are calibrated for four-ounce cups.
The Different Measurements
How much ground coffee is needed for one cup?
The size of your cup and how strong you want your coffee to taste will directly influence how much ground coffee you need.
You can use 9g of ground coffee and 5 oz of water for a standard cup (four ounces) that is averagely brewed. Nine grams equate to one standard level coffee scoop or two level tablespoons. Some of the water used will absorb or evaporate during the brewing stage.
For a strong cup of coffee, you can use 10g or a standard scoop of ground coffee, minus 10% from the level.
If you have larger coffee cups, multiply the above amounts by two or three. For example:
A standard measuring cup holds 8 oz. If your coffee cup is the same size, double the coffee and water by using 18 or 20g of coffee and 10 oz of water.
If your mug is the size of a Starbucks tall cup, you need to triple the amounts by using 27g, 30g, or 36g of coffee and 15 oz water.
How much ground coffee is needed for 30 cups?
If you’d like to make 30 cups (most probably in a percolator) of coffee brewed to average strength, you should use 207g of coffee and 150 oz water. That equates to 3/5lbs, 9.5 oz, or 3 ¾ cups of coffee, and 17 ¾ cups or 4 ½ quarts of water.
How much ground coffee is needed for 40 cups?
If you want to brew 40 cups (probably in a percolator) of coffee at average strength, you should use 360g of coffee and 200 oz water. These measurements equate to 4/5 pounds, 12.7 oz or 5 cups of coffee, and 23 2/3 cups or 6 quarts of water.
How much ground coffee is needed for 12 cups?
If you’d like to brew a pot of coffee that can make 12 cups, use 108g of ground coffee and 60 oz of water (7 ½ measuring cups). This measurement equates to approximately 12 leveled scoops of coffee or 24 level tablespoons.
For a strong brew, use 122g (12 ¾ leveled scoops or 27 ½ level tbsp), and for a mild one, use 95g (10 2/3 leveled scoops or 21 1/3 level tbsp).
How much ground coffee is needed for 10 cups?
If you want to brew 10 cups of coffee at average strength, you need to use 90g of ground coffee or 50 oz water. These measurements equate to approximately 10 level scoops or 20 level tbsp of coffee and 6 ¼ measuring cups of water.
For strong coffee, brew 102g (11 1/3 scoops or 22 2/3 tbsp), and for mild coffee, brew 79g (8 ¾ scoops or 17 ½ tbsp).
How much ground coffee is needed for 8 cups?
If you’d like to make eight cups of coffee with average strength, you need to use 72g of ground coffee and 40 oz water. These measurements equate to 8 level scoops, or 16 level tbsp of coffee, and 5 measuring cups of water.
If you prefer your coffee strong, you’ll need 82g (9 scoops or 18 tbsp) of ground coffee, and for a mild brew, you can use 64g (7 scoops or 14 tbsp).
How much ground coffee is needed for 6 cups?
To make six averagely brewed cups of coffee, you should use 54g of ground coffee and 30 oz water. These measurements equate to approximately 6 leveled scoops or 12 leveled tbsp of coffee and 3 ¾ measuring cups of water.
For a strong brew, you should use 62 g (7 scoops or 14 tbsp) of coffee, and for a mild brew, you only need 48g (5 1/3 scoops or 10 2/3 tbsp).
How much ground coffee is needed for 5 cups?
For five cups of coffee brewed at average strength, you should use 45g of ground coffee and 25 oz water. That equates to approximately 5 leveled scoops or 10 leveled tbsp of coffee and 3 measuring cups.
If you want to make a strong brew, you can use 51g (5 2/3 scoops or 11 1/3 tbsp) of coffee and for a mild brew, use 40g (4 ½ scoops or 9 tbsp).
How much ground coffee is needed for 4 cups?
To make four averagely brewed cups of coffee, use 36g of ground coffee and 20 oz water. These measurements equate to 4 leveled scoops, or 8 leveled tbsp of coffee, and 2 ½ measuring cups of water.
For a stronger brew, you can use 41g (4 ½ scoops or 9 tbsp) of coffee, and for a mild brew, use only 32g (3 ½ scoops or 7tbsp) of coffee.
How much ground coffee is needed for 2 cups?
If you’d like to brew two averagely strong cups of coffee, you should use 18g of ground coffee and 10 oz water. That’s approximately 2 leveled scoops or 4 leveled tbsp of coffee and 1 ¼ measuring cups of water.
To make stronger coffee, you should use 21g (2 1/3 scoops or 4 2/3 tbsp) of ground coffee, and for a mild brew, 16g (1 ¾ scoops or 3 ½ tbsp) will be sufficient.
How to Calculate the Coffee to Water Ratio
If you’d like to make an amount of coffee not listed in the measurements above, it’s simple to calculate the amounts needed yourself. This calculation is easily done by knowing the ratio of coffee to water needed for the different brew strengths. The two ratios that work best are:
You can play around with these ratios to find the perfect one for you!
How to Measure Coffee
The coffee to water ratio is generally measured by weight. For an averagely brewed cup, the water weight should be 16 times more than the coffee weight.
All our measurements have been summarized by weight and volume to make it more convenient for you. They’ve all been calculated based on the general weight of coffee when volume measures are used.
What to Measure Coffee With
If you’re working with weight, the best way to measure coffee is with a scale. Below you’ll find a detailed explanation of how to use a scale to measure coffee.
Luckily, working with a coffee scale will be a breeze if you know how to use a regular kitchen scale. There really isn’t much of a difference. Some coffee scales have built-in timers to help you time the coffee pouring, if you manually brew your coffee. However, if you don’t, a general digital kitchen scale will do the trick.
1. Turn on the scale
2. Set the unit display to g
3. Tare the scale to zero
4. Place the cup or bowl you’ll be using to measure your coffee on the scale
5. Tare the scale again to eliminate the cup/bowl weight
6. Add coffee to the cup/bowl until you reach the desired measurement
You can use these same steps to weigh your required water if weighting is simpler than going with volumes.
Scoop or Spoon
If you don’t have a scale or prefer to work with volumes, you can measure your coffee with a standard coffee scoop or proper tablespoon as well.
A standard coffee scoop is equivalent to 30 ml or 2 tbsp. To use the scoop, just dip or pour the ground coffee into it. You need to make sure that the coffee is leveled instead of heaped. You can use your finger or the flat edge of a knife to level it.
The instructions for measuring with a tablespoon are the same.
If you don’t have a scale or proper measuring tools, use a regular spoon. You can try to picture how much coffee would fit in a standard tablespoon, but it’s best to play around until you find your desired strength.
When to Measure Coffee
If you prefer measuring coffee beans instead of ground coffee, you should always measure by weight. The coffee will weigh approximately the same before and after being ground.
If you are weighing by volume, you should work with ground coffee. Because grinding puts air between the individual coffee particles, a scoopful of ground coffee will only weigh about a third of what a scoopful of coffee beans would have.
All the measurements provided in our article is based on ground coffee.