Is Distilled Water Good for Making Coffee?

crazy by Editorial Staff | Updated on January 19th, 2023

Distilled water is pegged as the purest kind of water. Others say it is pure and fresh as newly formed raindrops. But is it ideal for making coffee? Is it going to impact the taste of your java? Is it going to bring out your coffee’s best flavors? Keep reading to learn more!   


What is distilled water?

Distilled water is produced by boiling water into vapor and then condensing the vapor into liquid in a separate container. During distillation, minerals and other impurities present in water are removed. This means the water constituted from the vapor is purified — is substantively free from many pollutants and minerals, especially essential minerals and vitamins vital for your health. So, drinking this water for a long may not be a good idea.

distilled water

However, it is good to note that distilled water contains some contaminants. That is why distillation doesn’t necessarily make non-potable water safe to drink.

Distilled water has roughly 9 parts per million mineral content or only around 6% of the recommended mineral content.

Does distilled water make good coffee?

The short answer is no; distilled water doesn’t make good coffee. The tap water minerals contribute to your coffee’s flavor and texture. Without them, your brew will turn out bland and acidic. While distilled water can reduce the need for cleaning, it won’t give you the same flavor and aroma as coffee made with mineral-rich water.

Why distilled water is not ideal for coffee

It’s understandable why someone might think that distilled water would be the best choice for making coffee. After all, it has been purified to remove contaminants and other impurities. However, it is not the ideal choice for brewing coffee.

The process of distilling water strips out important minerals like magnesium and calcium, which can affect the flavor of your coffee. Without these minerals, your coffee will likely be bitter and acidic. Additionally, distilled water has no buffering capacity, meaning that coffee brewed with it can turn out harshly acidic.

So although distilled water may seem like a great option for making coffee, it is not the best choice.

How does distilling water affect the taste of coffee?

Minerals in water play a key role in helping retain flavor and preventing water from leaching flavors from the containers in which it is stored. Distilled water lacks these minerals (if present, very few), and hence it will take on a plastic taste and absorb some of the plastic’s chemicals.

Not to mention that distilled water also assimilates compounds such as carbon dioxide and over-extract caffeine from the ground beans, resulting in increased coffee acidity—the increase of acidity and diminishing flavor results in an overly bitter cup or bland.  

Bonus! If the water is hard (has high mineral content), the coffee will under-extract and produce a soft and sour cup.

What effects does distilled water have on coffee-making equipment?

So far, we have not recommended using distilled water to make coffee. However, there is one benefit of using this water; it reduces the need to clean your brewer. This is because distilled water lacks calcium and magnesium —the primary minerals besides helping water retain flavor, which results in minerals buildup in the reservoir and the internal mechanism of coffee machines. It is for that reason this water is recommended for use in other appliances, such as hot water urns and steam irons.

What minerals make good coffee?

Generally, calcium and magnesium are the two minerals that contribute the most to flavor and aroma. Calcium is important for a balanced flavor, while magnesium helps enhance the aroma of the coffee. Both of these minerals are stripped away when water is distilled, so using distilled water for coffee could lead to a cup that tastes flat and lacks fragrance.

Why does Keurig say not to use distilled water?

This is because Keurig coffee makers have sensors that detect minerals content in water. Now, if you are using distilled water, the sensors won’t work, and you will get an error message if you attempt to use the brewer.

What is the best water for making coffee?

Now that we have discussed the pros and cons of making coffee with distilled water let’s consider what type of water is best. The best water for coffee would be filtered water that contains essential minerals like calcium and magnesium.

Filtered water also removes chlorine, sediment, and other contaminants found in tap water. This type of water produces a richer flavor and is ideal for making espresso and other types of coffee. Distilled water is still an acceptable choice if you cannot access filtered or mineral-rich water.

What are the disadvantages of using mineral-rich water for coffee?

Using mineral-rich water for coffee does have its drawbacks, however. The most notable of these is that it can cause the buildup of minerals inside your coffee machine, leading to a decrease in its performance over time. It can also increase the acidity levels in your coffee, resulting in a bitter taste.

Furthermore, some minerals can impart a metallic aftertaste to your coffee that some people find undesirable. For these reasons, it is important to make sure you are using an appropriate filter in your coffee machine to help reduce the number of minerals in your cup of coffee.

How to make sure your coffee tastes good with distilled water

It’s possible to make a decent cup of coffee with distilled water, but it will require some tweaking. The key is to add back the minerals that the water is missing. You can do this by adding a pinch of baking soda or using mineral-rich water that has been filtered or bottled.

Adding just a small amount of minerals can make all the difference in the flavor of your coffee. Additionally, you’ll want to experiment with grind size and extraction temperature, as these two factors can also affect the taste of your coffee. With a bit of trial and error, you should be able to find the perfect combination to get the best out of your coffee.

Conclusion

When making the perfect cup of coffee, it’s important to understand that the type of water you use can greatly impact the flavor of your brew. Distilled water is great for many things, but when it comes to coffee, it may not be the best choice. It lacks minerals and bicarbonates, essential for a flavorful cup of java.

While making good-tasting coffee with distilled water is still possible, it may not be as flavorful as mineral-rich tap water or filtered water. If you’re looking for the best water to make coffee with, look no further than mineral-rich options. The flavor will be much more complex and satisfying than if you were to use distilled water.

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 2024-04-23 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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

crazy

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.