6 Best Chemex Filters And Reusable Alternatives

crazy by Editorial Staff | Updated on April 2nd, 2023

Are you seeking the ideal cup of coffee, and what does it include? Or are you looking for a reusable, long-term filtering solution?

Is there a disparity between the coffee made using white and brown paper? Should you go for a metallic one, and would you be able to distinguish the difference in taste between the two?


Could you use standard, less expensive filters with the Chemex vessel? What makes the originals so unique? Where can you get these at the best price?

It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking for the best filter for a Chemex carafe based on price, flavor, quality, durability, or the most eco-friendly alternative. In this post, I attempted to cover everything you’d need to know when determining which filter is ideal for a Chemex carafe.

So let’s get started.

What is Chemex coffee?

A Chemex coffee maker is a kind of pour-over coffee maker. It offers a time-honored method of brewing coffee that may be both wonderfully easy and startlingly difficult, depending on your coffee tastes.

The coffee maker is simply a beaker with an hourglass shape and a wide, open mouth. This basic form may be found in a variety of shapes and sizes. Some types have a wood and leather handle wrapped around the middle, while others have a small glass grip.

They all intend to use certain Chemex filters, irrespective of model or size.

Unfortunately, with exclusivity comes scarcity, and it’s not always that easy to get your hands on the brand filters.

What is a Chemex filter?

Chemex filters are custom-made to eliminate every trace of contaminant from your coffee, such as sediment, oils, and fats. The filter paper is heavy and thick compared to other coffee filters you may have used in the past.

In addition to working as a premium-quality filter, it helps provide the ideal brew durations for your coffee.

Their filters are also promised not to break, implying that even if you pour a bit hotter and heavier water than you meant, your filter will not burst and turn your coffee into gritty sludge.

A Chemex filter guide

Choosing which product will best fit your tastes and demands is not tricky.

I realize that, at first, you may be perplexed by all of the alternatives available, but reading the important explanations below will help you out.

Also, make sure to use the best coffee grinder for Chemex and only medium-coarse coffee grinds for the perfect brewed coffee.

As a result, below is a comprehensive guide on Chemex filter papers and their alternatives:

1. Brown versus white

White Chemex filters are bleached in a succession of hot water baths after an oxidizing washing bath. Because the brown versions are not oxidized, they have this natural brown hue. However, when it comes to the filter’s influence on coffee flavor, the drawback of utilizing natural filters is that they produce a somewhat more papery-flavored coffee. This is why you must thoroughly clean the unbleached filter with hot water before use to prevent this undesirable effect.

White coffee filters must also be rinsed with hot water before adding coffee grinds.

This rinse operation is required to eliminate any dust or paper scraps that may be present.

Furthermore, if you pre-wet the paper with hot water, the first extracted pieces of coffee will not soak.

2. Square versus round

There is no difference in quality between the square and round Chemex filters. They are made of the same material, and there will be no differences in the flavor of the coffee they make.

Choosing between the two is a question of personal aesthetic tastes.

Regarding their practical differences in daily usage, some individuals prefer to use the square filter since its sides stand up, making it simpler to grasp.

3. Either pre-folded or unfolded

Pre-folded filters will not function on miniature models. The foldable filters are solely intended for use with Funnex coffeemakers or pint-sized coffeemakers, which are portable, single-cup brewing devices.

The pre-folded filters, which come in circles or squares, are used by most Chemex owners. Because they are pre-folded, they are reasonably straightforward and already in the appropriate cone form.

4. Do you have any other options?

You may utilize a Chemex with a variety of different filter choices. Even so, the original double-bonded filter will provide the distinct coffee flavor for which Chemex is famous. If you don’t want to make a typical Chemex-style brew, you may invest in a reusable permanent filter, like a stainless-steel cone or a cloth filter.

It might be helpful to give you an idea of the kind of coffee you’ll get with each version:

  • Chemex filters —lighter-bodied, clean cup with prominent notes. No coffee sediments are at the bottom of your cup—coffee with mild acidity.
  • Reusable stainless-steel brewer — fuller-bodied, closer to French press brew, but not too many residues will make their way into your cup as with a French press. However, you’ll likely discover sediment remnants at the base of your carafe.
  • Cloth filter — fuller-bodied than Chemex but lighter than the steel type. There are fewer residual grounds in the container than with stainless steel.

5. Could you use other papers?

The original thick filters are a little more costly.

Also, the availability of the originals varies based on your area.

If you dislike internet shopping, you could be tempted to purchase alternative filters available in your local food store.

Using paper filters other than the original versions with a Chemex brewer is not recommended.

Other manufacturers have thinner filters, allowing more oils to get through, resulting in a somewhat fuller-bodied cup.

Another reason alternative filters are not suggested is that they tend to break apart, particularly at the seams, since they are thinner and more delicate.

Furthermore, since they are meant to be used with various brewing equipment, other filters often collapse into your carafe as you pour in the water due to the bigger size of the Chemex neck.

Considerations when purchasing a pour-over coffee filter

1. Disposable filters

The majority of pour-over coffee filters are made of paper. However, the main disadvantage of using paper is that it tends to retain extra oils from the coffee beans. While this benefits coffee drinkers who want a less acidic beverage, it subtracts significantly from flavor and taste. Paper filters are also disposable filters since they are designed to be discarded after each usage.

2. Reusable filters

The reusable filters comprise high-quality stainless-steel mesh that allows more oils and nutrients to flow through. They also provide a more robust and full-bodied coffee. While reusable filters are more costly initially, their long-term usage makes them much less costly. Reusable metal filters are also more environmentally friendly than paper filters.

3. Dual-filter technology

Dual-construction filters have an interior and external filter for improved filtering. It is meant to retain the tiniest grinds and prevent sediments from entering your carafe, cup, or mug.

4. Single-serve vs. carafe

Most pour-over filters are compatible with practically any carafe or coffee machine. On the other hand, the solid-body filters that stand-alone may be put over a mug, cup, or thermos. Choose a filter based on whether you’ll use it for a single cup or a carafe.

What are the best Chemex filters, and what are their alternatives?

Now that we’ve cleared the air, I’m ready to present the best Chemex filters and their alternatives.

I made sure that I only listed things worth noting that may be used with the glass carafe.

So, these are the ideal filters to use with a Chemex:

1. Chemex’s original filters

The thick Chemex filters prevent leftover coffee bits from passing through and filter coffee oils, resulting in a lighter-bodied yet tasty low-acid cup.

Diterpenes are oily compounds that cannot pass through the Chemex paper filters.

Their intake is linked to a rise in cholesterol, another benefit of the Chemex filters.

They are simple to use.

As previously said, you may need to rinse the brown filters with hot water a little longer to remove the paper flavor.

Anyway, it’s worth noting that if you purchased the Chemex vessel only because it looks stylish and you like a fuller-bodied cup, you could find the other alternatives on the list more appealing.

Here are all of the Chemex filters available to you:

Chemex’s original filters

For 6-cup, 8-cup, and 10-cup:

For 3 cups, unfolded:

Here’s an illustration to assist you:

chemex filter how to guide

*Make sure the 3-sheet side is towards the carafe spout. This guarantees optimal airflow throughout the brewing process.

2. Able brewing kone — lasts longer and has a stronger taste.

The Able Brewing Kone is one of the most acceptable Chemex filter replacements – a long-term option for individuals who are tired of restocking on paper filters.

It is manufactured in the United States and is more costly than other alternatives, but it is strong and will last you for years. So it is well worth the money.

It is a reusable stainless-steel filter made specifically for the Chemex carafe.

The Able Kone walls do not touch the glass, allowing for adequate air circulation and coffee extraction. In addition, because coffee oils may pass through it during percolation, this filter will provide a fuller-bodied cup.

The Able Kone is very simple to maintain. Just be sure to empty and clean it immediately after use. This way, it will be much simpler since the grounds will still be moist and readily removed.

It will be considerably more straightforward if you have a kitchen sink sprayer.

Unfortunately, only an Able Kone works with the 6-cup, 8-cup, and 10-cup vessels. Thus it will not fit if you have a 3-cup type.

It’s ideal for individuals who want a fuller-bodied cup, wish to reduce waste, or avoid purchasing paper filters by investing in a high-quality reusable Chemex alternative.

3. CoffeeSock Organic Cotton — An eco-friendly alternative to a full-bodied coffee.

If you’re seeking an eco-friendly, long-lasting replacement for your Chemex filters, the CoffeeSock Organic Cotton is the most acceptable option.

CoffeeSock is reasonably priced, and you get a pack of two filters.

Knowing how lasting they are, with reasonable care, even if you start using only one of them daily, it will still perform well after a year.

After each usage, rinse the sock with water and place it someplace to dry.

If you’re going to use it more than once a day and it hasn’t dried after the first usage – well, you’ve got a second sock.

Some individuals recommend keeping cloth filters in zip lock bags soaked with water in the fridge or freezer between usage to prevent the cloth flavor in their coffee.

Of course, this approach might be viable if you live somewhere with high humidity and socks don’t appear to dry out quickly. In addition, this filter is ideal if you are particularly sensitive to the faint papery tastes that paper filters may contribute. Overall, the CoffeeSock is for individuals who seek a more sustainable, eco-friendly alternative to Chemex filters without sacrificing the clean cup that the originals provided.

4. Barista warrior stainless steel filter — a low-cost, multi-purpose alternative.

This Barista Warrior is less expensive than the Able Kone and has a different filtering mechanism. It has two sides. The inside one is mesh and made of stainless steel as well.

Its objective is to keep all of the grounds out of your cup. However, the disadvantage of the double-wall mechanism is that it clogs up more quickly. To prevent this, please ensure to rinse the cone immediately after usage. And, of course, for the grind size — a medium to coarse grind is ideal.

You will prevent clogging with this method. If you notice that the Barista Warrior drains slower than usual, drop it in the dishwasher and be ready to use with the normal flow rate.

You may detect some sediment in your coffee while using the Barista Warrior, but getting an ultra-clean cup other than the original Chemex filters is not feasible. This stainless-steel filter is also somewhat more robust than the Ovalware. This product is worth the money, in my opinion, and it is one of the most acceptable reusable alternatives to Chemex filters for those who aren’t picky about every detail in your coffee.

5. Bolio Hemp – A long-lasting and delicious coffee taste

Another of the greatest eco-friendly reusable alternatives to Chemex filters is Hemp from Bolio. They let more sediments partially into your cup than the Chemex, but it does not affect the coffee flavor. It also has to be rinsed and hung to dry after each usage.

They are constructed entirely of organic materials and will help you feel less bad if you care about the environment. In addition, you won’t be wasting paper filters after each batch without sacrificing coffee flavor. The Square Hemp for the Chemex brewer is also reasonably priced.

It is simple to use. Bring it to a boil for 5 minutes before your first brew. It may get wrinkled over time, but this will not affect its performance.

6. Apace Living — Aesthetically pleasant and cost-effective stainless-steel alternative

Another coffee filter suitable for your 6-, 8-, or 10-cup Chemex carafe is the Apace Living stainless steel reusable filter. It is one of the more recent additions to our list, and it is well worth your consideration, as its stainless-steel double-layer mesh performs well. It also includes a cleaning brush to make it easy to remove the coffee pieces after usage. This will most likely keep clogs at bay for a longer period.

This reusable filter will allow some sediment to enter your cup. Furthermore, if you choose a coarser grind, it will drain too quickly. This would result in under extraction, which is undesirable, thus grinding to a finer level to prevent this undesirable effect.

The filter is well-made and durable, and it will allow you to enjoy a good cup of coffee. In addition, the Apace Living reusable filter is a low-cost stainless-steel alternative to Chemex filters that performs well.

Health benefits of using a Chemex filter

Chemex filters have been widely researched and proved to provide healthier coffee than certain standard brews.

Many of their studies and findings are not yet definitive, indicating that additional study is required, but here are some of the early patterns and health claims being made:

  • Generally filtered coffee, in general, does not boost LDL cholesterol levels as much as unfiltered coffee.
  • Due to the high quality of the Chemex filter, coffee prepared in this system has significantly less cholesterol.
  • Because of the high quality of the Chemex filter, more potentially dangerous pollutants, such as oil, fat, and even acidity, are filtered out.

The argument that filtered coffee is healthier for you than unfiltered coffee has been around for a long and seems to have more backing.

Cleaning a reusable coffee filter

Reusable filters are not inexpensive, but they save money in the long term and pay for themselves. However, you must take proper care of these filters to last a long time and provide tasty coffee. Now that you’ve discovered the finest Chemex reusable filter, it’s essential to take precautions.

A typical issue regarding metal filters is that they get clogged when not properly cleaned after use. The essential oils get trapped when the sieve clogs, resulting in a mediocre-tasting coffee. There are two methods for cleaning after each use:

  • First, thoroughly rinse the filter with warm water and mild soap.
  • Clean the filter on the top rack of a dishwasher.

Remember to clean the coffeemaker behind the filter basket with a moist towel in both circumstances. This will ensure that your filter continues to function flawlessly. While this method is sufficient for everyday cleaning, properly clean the filter once or twice a week. Take the actions outlined below.

How to get the most out of a reusable metallic Chemex filter

When using a Chemex with a stainless steel filter

  1. Use the proper grind size to prevent clogging.
  2. Immediately after brewing, dump the spent grounds and rinse the mesh under warm water to eliminate the oils and grounds remains.
  3. Soak the filter in a solution of equal parts water and vinegar once a month to remove stubborn oils and grinds.
  4. Do not forcibly strike the filter while dropping the grounds to avoid damage.

Where can you get original paper filters at a reasonable price?

The cheapest alternative is to purchase them offline when it comes to those filters — assuming you reside in a location where the filters are always accessible.

In actuality, though, the shops aren’t always completely stocked with all the filter variations, and you may discover that the ones you want to purchase are constantly out of stock.

I propose sparing yourself some time and trouble by just making a purchase online.

If you want to purchase from the comfort of your home, you may visit Amazon or the Chemex website. While they seem to be more costly than on the Chemex website at first glance, ordering via Amazon will save you money since delivery expenses are substantially lower.

Are you searching for an environmentally friendly solution?

Here are some recommendations and information that you may find helpful if you want to lessen your negative influence on the environment while still enjoying your daily coffee.

Chemex filters are biodegradable.

They will take longer to disintegrate since they are thicker, but you may rip them into little pieces to speed up the process.

Another thing worth noting is that natural brown Chemex filters are always a better choice for the environment. So if you’re seeking a long-term solution and have chosen to quit purchasing paper filters due to environmental concerns, the CoffeeSock is the way to go.

Because it is constructed of 100 percent organic cotton, this is the best reusable replacement that works well with all carafe sizes, while other replacements include certain slow-degrading elements.

You won’t have to sacrifice coffee flavor with the cotton sock.

Why is Chemex regarded as superior to other coffee makers?

Chemex fans often believe it to be a superior alternative to other coffee makers due to its all-glass construction, distinctive form, and filter. The glass structure adds more taste to your coffee, reduced bitterness, and gives a clearer texture. In addition, there is no heaviness, as with drip coffee.


After all those explanations, extensive evaluations, and fundamental instructions, I hope you’ve settled on a Chemex filter and which product is ideal for you.

You may have picked more than one – I purchase the natural brown ones, but when I run out, I use my reusable cotton Chemex filters, which you may have noticed are on the list.

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using these links. Remember to support us by purchasing through the Amazon/Walmart/Impact Radius links provided. Last update on 2024-05-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Disclosure: No compensation or free products were received in exchange for writing this review.


Editorial Staff

The editorial staff at Crazy Coffee Crave is a team of coffee enthusiasts & Baristas who enjoy the one thing we all think about as soon as we get up in the morning. Trusted by thousands of readers worldwide.