The filter you use to brew your coffee dramatically impacts its taste and quality. Most modern coffee makers require some sort of filter. So what are the best coffee filters in 2023?
The best overall coffee filter of 2023 is the RUOYING Eco-Sopure Reusable Basket-Style Coffee Filter for high-quality coffee. The stainless steel is environmentally friendly, reusable, and doesn’t leach chlorine into your coffee. It is also dishwasher-safe and compatible with various coffee makers.
The only instances in which I wouldn’t recommend the RUOYING coffee filters are if…
- You’re looking for paper filters. In this case, opt for, If You Care Coffee Filters. These fully-compostable coffee filters are unbleached and high quality.
- You want something to replace your single-use K-cups. Consider RUOYING Reusable K-Cup Pods, which are effective, affordable, and long-lasting.
- You’re on a budget. Melitta Brown Coffee Filters are excellent coffee filters for those on a tight budget and are also unbleached.
To learn more about my pick for the best overall coffee filter of 2023 and other options for different brewing methods, check out the rest of the article and optimize your coffee-brewing routine.
Best overall coffee filter of 2023: RUOYING Eco-Sopure Reusable Basket-Style Coffee Filter
My top overall pick for coffee filters is this reusable, stainless steel coffee filter. This filter is suitable for traditional coffee makers and four different brands of coffee makers.
Purchasing this filter will eliminate the need to continuously buy single-use paper filters.
By opting for a reusable coffee filter, you can eliminate the negative environmental impact of traditional paper filters and the cost associated with routinely purchasing single-use filters.
Additionally, it is made from stainless steel, producing better-tasting and richer-bodied coffee.
Reusable, food-grade stainless steel coffee filters may also benefit your health. Traditional white paper coffee filters are bleached and contain chlorine, among other chemicals.
Using this coffee filter instead of paper will give you a delicious, non-toxic brew that leaves you satisfied and thoroughly caffeinated.
Bottom line: This stainless steel coffee filter is perfect for anyone who prefers traditional drip coffee and still wants to preserve the natural aromas and flavors in an eco-friendly way.
- Reusable and built to last
- Compatible with four different brands of drip coffee makers
- Dishwasher safe
- Produces better-tasting coffee than paper filters
- Doesn’t leach chemicals like chlorine into your coffee
- Must be washed after each use
- Only compatible with Black+Decker, BUNN, Hamilton Beach, and Mr. Coffee machines.
Best affordable coffee filters: Melitta 8-12 Cup Brown Coffee Filters
If you prefer to use single-use filters, these paper filters from Melitta are a perfectly suitable option. Aside from how affordable they are, they are universal and will fit into almost any coffee maker.
While paper filters and drip coffee generally aren’t seen as “trendy” these days, I can’t discredit the ease and simplicity of setting the timer on your old-faithful coffee maker and waking up to the sound (and smell) of fresh coffee.
If you’re still on the classic coffee-making train, the filters you use have a noticeable impact on your coffee’s taste.
These paper filters are designed to trap any impurities, so what drips down into the carafe is pure and tastes great.
As I mentioned in the section above, white paper coffee filters are bleached with chlorine to get that pristine look, and those chemicals can alter your coffee’s flavor profile.
Thankfully, these coffee filters are brown and unbleached, giving you peace of mind that your coffee won’t be tainted with chlorine.
Bottom line: These single-use coffee filters are perfect for you if you want high-quality coffee with fewer impurities and less clean-up at an affordable price.
- Unbleached for enhanced flavor and fewer chemicals
- No clean-up required
- Affordable price
- It comes in a 1200-pack for fewer trips to the store
- Universal size fits almost any drip-coffee machine
- You can use it to brew several cups of coffee at once
- Not as environmentally conscious as reusable filters
- Will run out and need to be re-purchased at some point
Best environmentally-friendly paper coffee filters: If You Care FSC Unbleached Coffee Filters
Reusable coffee filters are the most environmentally friendly option.
However, if you prefer paper filters, If You Care Unbleached Coffee Filters are the best eco-friendly option. Although they are single-use, they are fully compostable.
Composting is a great way to decrease the negative environmental impact of your cup of morning sustenance.
These filters can be composted along with the spent coffee grounds after brewing.
The filters are considered a brown material for your compost, while coffee grounds are considered green compost material, meaning they add nutrients to the compost mix.
Bottom line: The If You Care Coffee Filters are best suited for those who want a mess-free clean-up after brewing their coffee and avid composters who care about their carbon footprint.
- Fully compostable
- No need for clean-up
- Unbleached and chlorine-free
- Produces better-tasting coffee than white, bleached filters
- Will run out and need to be re-purchased
- It doesn’t offer as optimal a flavor as a stainless-steel filter
Best cone-shaped paper coffee filters: Chemex Bonded Coffee Filters
You may have noticed a theme in this article regarding paper coffee filters: brown is best.
These cone coffee filters will help you brew the best-tasting cup of coffee possible because they are unbleached and chemical-free.
If you want to learn more about the reasons behind my thoughts, you can read my comparison between bleached and unbleached coffee filters here.
Chemex’s coffee filters are made with sturdy paper and won’t rip during the brewing process or when you’re removing the spent grounds from your coffee maker.
They are designed to fit many of the Chemex sizes available but can also be used for other coffee makers that require a cone-shaped filter.
Additionally, they are designed to remove a large portion of the oils that can cause your coffee to taste bitter. You won’t find any stray grounds at the bottom of your cup, either.
Bottom line: These basic paper coffee filters are great for those who own coffee makers designed for cone-shaped filters and want great-tasting coffee and simple clean-up.
- Unbleached and chlorine-free for high-quality coffee
- Easy clean-up
- Suitable for various cone-shaped coffee makers and Chemex sizes
- It comes in a pack with 100 filters
- Not compostable
- It doesn’t produce as good of a flavor as stainless steel
Best coffee filter for pour over coffee: Cnuben Stainless Steel Pour Over Coffee Dripper
For pour over coffee lovers, I recommend this stainless steel pour over coffee filter. A paper filter is typically best for pour over coffee, but a reusable one has many benefits.
While you’ll need to wash it after each use, it’s made from stainless steel and is dishwasher safe. Instead of buying a pack of single-use filters each week or month, this option will allow you to use the same filter repeatedly.
It’s designed to be light and transportable, so you can brew your coffee in your kitchen at home, at the office, or even while traveling.
Additionally, you can use it to brew any quantity of pour over coffee, from a single cup to enough for all your brunch guests.
The sleek, stylish design will look great on your kitchen counter, but it is still compact enough to store in the cupboard or kitchen drawer.
Bottom line: These filters are best suited for those who enjoy brewing pour over coffee and want to produce better-tasting coffee with less waste.
- Two stylish designs to choose from
- Made from durable, food-grade stainless steel
- Dishwasher safe
- Efficient flow rate and a 2-minute extraction time
- It comes with a combination scoop and brush
- Only suitable for brewing pour over coffee and won’t work in a coffee machine
- Must be cleaned after each use
Best K-Cup alternative: RUOYING Reusable K-Cup Coffee Pod
Keurig coffee makers have taken the world by storm. Unfortunately, plastic K-cups have had a devastating effect on the environment.
The creator of K-Cups, John Sylvan, has made several statements regarding his invention’s negative impact on the environment and even states that he regrets creating them.
Aside from their environmental impact, K-cups are expensive.
A reusable alternative will help you save money because you can use regular ground coffee or coffee beans. Simply fill the reusable pod with your ground coffee of choice and brew.
This reusable K-cup coffee filter is made from stainless steel, which produces a richer body and deeper flavor.
You can’t go wrong with stainless steel when it comes to coffee. Luckily, its stainless-steel construction also makes this reusable coffee pod dishwasher safe, so clean-up is a breeze.
Bottom line: If you love your Keurig coffee maker (or other single-use coffee machines) but loathe the excess plastic waste caused by K-cups, these reusable filter pods will be the perfect, less-wasteful addition to your morning routine.
- Compatible with most Keurig coffee makers
- Dishwasher safe
- Stainless steel construction for durability and richer flavor
- Reusable and environmentally friendly
- Must be cleaned after each use
- It may not be compatible with other single-serve coffee machines (Hamilton Beach Flex-Brew, Nespresso, etc.)
Best French press coffee filters: BOAO 6-Piece French Press Coffee Replacement Filters
If you clean your French press thoroughly after each use, the filter should last for the life of the press.
It is crucial to clean after each brew because the oils and debris can build up in the fine-mesh filter and cause a foul, bitter taste to your coffee.
- Allow the French press coffee maker to cool completely.
- Toss the spent coffee grounds in your garbage can or compost bin.
- Leaving the filter and plunger in place, add regular dish soap and hot water to your French press.
- Pump the press plunger up and down to create foam from the dish soap.
- Rinse with hot water until the water runs clear.
- Let the French press dry completely before brewing another cup of coffee.
Even after following these steps, you may need to replace your French press filter if you use it often.
When picking a filter, you should consider the mesh filter’s composition, as this will ensure you don’t end up swallowing a mouthful of coffee grounds.
BOAO 6-Piece French press Coffee Replacement Filters come in a pack of six, so you won’t need to purchase them continuously week after week.
They are also compatible with any 1000-milliliter French press coffee maker and are simple to install.
Bottom line: Replacement French press filters are great for anyone who owns this coffee maker type. While you won’t need to replace the filters often (as long as you clean the press after each use), they’re great if you ever need to switch the old filter out for a fresh one.
- Stainless steel that won’t rust
- Produces great-tasting coffee
- A pack of six will last a very long time
- Easy to clean when you clean the rest of your French press after each brew
- It may not be compatible with smaller French press coffee makers
What factors should you consider when picking a coffee filter?
The type of coffee filter you should use depends largely on your preferred method of brewing.
While each one can produce high-quality coffee, each method is only successful if you use the right filter.
Here is a convenient chart describing the filter you need for various brewing methods:
|Brewing method||Type of filter required||Reusable options?|
|Drip coffee machine||Basket filter or cone filter||Yes|
|French press||Fine-mesh filter||Yes|
|Pour over||Pour over specific filter||Yes|
|Single serve (e.g., Keurig)||Single-serve filter||Yes|
With these specifications in mind, here are some other factors to consider when picking a coffee filter:
Taste and flavor profile
There is a considerable difference between coffee brewed with bleached coffee filters, brown filters, and stainless steel filters.
Here’s the breakdown:
- Stainless steel coffee filters offer a rich body and honor the natural aromas of your coffee of choice.
- Bleached coffee filters may alter the flavor of your coffee because they are treated with chlorine and other chemicals.
- Brown filters aren’t treated with chemicals and provide better-tasting coffee than white ones, but the coffee won’t taste as high quality as it would with stainless steel.
If you drink coffee multiple times a day, the cost associated with constantly restocking your coffee station with single-use filters or K-cups can add up.
Where cost is concerned, you can’t go wrong with a reusable coffee filter since you’ll only have to replace it if it wears out or breaks.
Cost is a critical factor if you use a Keurig coffee maker. The Manual reports that the average everyday coffee drinker will spend up to $876 per year on K-cups.
With reusable options available for less than $20, the decision to go the eco-friendly route is vastly more affordable.
The coffee type has a lot to do with your brewing method.
For example, it’s best to use a coarser grind for French press coffee makers, while pre-ground, store-bought coffee is suitable for drip coffee and pour over brewing, but this may not give you the best taste.
When choosing a coffee filter, considering the size of your preferred grind will help you avoid a cup of coffee riddled with loose coffee grounds.
Stainless steel coffee filters may be better suited for those who enjoy flavored coffee varieties, as the steel does not add any additional flavor or aromas to the coffee.
While most of the environmental impact of the coffee industry is produced by cultivating and harvesting coffee, the type of filter you use can help decrease your environmental footprint.
If you are conscious of the trash your household produces, opt for a reusable filter instead of single-use paper coffee filters or K-cups.
What else can you use in place of a regular coffee filter?
If investing in a reusable, stainless steel coffee filter or a pack of single-use ones doesn’t appeal to you, you might be surprised that alternatives are available. Here are some ideas to try:
- Paper towel
- Mesh sieve
Check out my other article to learn more about the best coffee filter substitutes and to keep enjoying great-tasting coffee even if you run out of filters.
Should you wet your paper coffee filters before using them?
If you’re a coffee fan, you might have heard that wetting your paper coffee filter before using it is better. Is this true?
You should wet your paper coffee filter before using them because it rinses away any residual chemicals or substances that might affect your coffee’s taste.
This is especially true if you use bleached paper coffee filters. If you have a reusable coffee filter, it’s worth rinsing it before using it, as this can eliminate any residual cleaning products or old coffee that could taint the taste of your coffee.
When considering the taste, flavor profile, cost, type of coffee, and environmental impact, it’s no question that the RUOYING Eco-Sopure Reusable Coffee Filter is the best overall coffee filter of 2023.
The Eco-Supure Filter is reusable, stainless steel, and compatible with several coffee makers.
Check out the RUOYING Eco Sopure Coffee Filter on Amazon today: