The French press, beloved for its ability to easily brew bold, rich coffee, has one major downfall: it’s so damn hard to clean.
Scooping out the contents of the used grinds from the bottom of the carafe is a messy endeavor ― one that has been known to lodge tiny coffee grounds deep under your fingernails ― and it can feel impossible to properly rinse the plunger. (It’s one of the reasons that a used French press will sit for an embarrassingly long time next to the sink in my kitchen.)
The fine folks at Cook’s Illustrated have solved this problem with a ridiculously easy way to clean a French press.
First, fill the French press with water to get all the grounds loose from the bottom of the carafe. Then, pour the contents into a fine mesh sieve. Just like that, those gritty grinds are out of there. Toss the grounds from the sieve and rinse it out. Now fill the carafe with soap and warm water, and move on to the plunger:
Plunge the top into the soapy water and move it up and down a few times. This will not only dislodge any grounds stuck in the plunger, but it also helps scrub the sides of the carafe.
So simple that it’s brilliant. Cook’s Illustrated has even more coffee-maker hack ideas ― check them out.