How To Clean And Care For A Moka Coffee Pot

While it may be easy to put daily cleaning of your moka coffee pot on the back burner, make it a priority. With any coffee maker, it is important to clean it regularly as bits of the grounds and natural oils can accumulate. Aside from general cleanliness, this residue affects the taste of your final brew.

Stainless steel moka pots tend to be more durable than the aluminum ones, but with regular cleaning and care, these simple appliances can last for years and years. Fortunately, the process is very straightforward and affordable. You should clean all three parts of the moka pot — the bottom water chamber, top coffee chamber, and the ground coffee filter basket in the middle — every time you use it. This may seem like a lot, but the daily cleaning can be pretty gentle. Really, all it needs is a well-intentioned rinse. Deep cleans to remove that mineral and limescale residue— a process known as descaling — only need to happen a few times a year.

How to clean a moka coffee pot

In order for a moka pot to remain in great condition, all the different valves and holes must remain unobstructed. The chances of blockages and build-up increase when the used grounds get left behind in the pot for too long. This can also create an environment just right for mold growth. If you do notice clogging in the coffee ground catch or the filter plate at the bottom of the brewed coffee compartment, use a soft-bristled toothbrush or a needle to gently remove debris.

Wait until the pot cools off, unscrew the top and bottom pieces, remove the coffee compartment, and dump the spent grounds in the trash or compost. Think twice before putting coffee grounds in the garbage disposal as they tend to clump up and block pipes. Then, rinse all the pieces of the moka pot under hot running water, paying special attention to the filter basket and safety valve. Thoroughly pat dry and reassemble. That's it! Just remember that you should never use soap or abrasive sponges, and you should never run the components of your moka pot through the dishwasher.

What is descaling a moka coffee pot and how do you do it?

How hard the water is — meaning high in dissolved minerals — in the area where you live will determine how much residue builds up in your moka pot. How often you thoroughly clean out that build-up — or descale — your moka pot, can range from twice a year to once a month. The greater the concentration of minerals in the water, the more regularly you have to descale the pot. Using filtered water instead of tap water can be helpful here.

You will need a product like distilled white vinegar, apple cider vinegar, descaling tablets, or citric acid. Lime or lemon juice could even be the secret to easily cleaning your coffee pot as those fruit juices also provide acidity. First, fill the bottom chamber with water nearly to the brim. Add a tablespoon or two of your acidic component to the water, depending on the size of your pot. Reassemble, and let it sit for at least two hours or up to overnight. If your pot does not have a lot of build-up, simply discard the soaking liquid, rinse the pot under hot running water, and dry well. Or, you can tip out a bit of the water, and heat up the pot on the stove, so it runs through a brew cycle before discarding. You may also want to brew a sacrificial pot of coffee to make sure you have gotten rid of the acidic taste.