How to Make Coffee Less Watery

It can be upsetting when you're expecting savory flavor then ending up drinking watered-down coffee. How does this happen, and what can you do to fix it? We're listing the different ways to make coffee less watery so that you can enjoy a good cup of Kona coffee.

How to Make Coffee Less Watery

To make coffee less watery, change the grind size, adjust the coffee to water ratio, use the correct brewing temperature, and switch to a more intense roast. You can also check your machine for malfunctions, avoid ice cubes, add milk and creams, and use the right temper size.

Suppose you find yourself in a miserable situation of drinking watered-down coffee. In that case, there are different solutions to solve this to ensure you can experience the full flavors of Kona coffee.

Cup of espresso coffee

Change the Grind Size to Suit Your Brewing Method

The grinds you use should be one of the first things to consider when brewing coffee. For example, too coarse Kona coffee grounds may likely produce a weak cup of coffee due to under extraction. 

For this reason, it's essential that you select the appropriate grind size depending on how you will prepare the coffee for drinking. This is a good rule of thumb to follow to produce optimum flavor and avoid coffee from being watery.

  • Fine: Fine to extra fine ground beans are suitable for Aeropress coffee makers, espresso machines, and Moka pots. These devices only take a few seconds for the water to come in contact with the coffee and extract.
  • Medium: This is a good starting point, especially when you're still testing new coffee. Pour-over, regular drip machines, and siphon coffee makers should use medium grinds to avoid impeding water flow. You need to brew longer to fully extract the flavor since these devices force water into the brewing chamber.
  • Coarse: Cold brew and French press should use a coarse grind. These brewing processes follow an immersion method, which means they need a longer time to extract. A coarse grind slows the extraction and avoids over-extraction.

Adjust the Coffee to Water Ratio

Some brewing methods require less water than others. However, the general guideline is to use 1 to 2 tablespoons of ground coffee for every 6 ounces of water. If you're using less than this, this may be one of the reasons why your coffee tastes watery.

This is a good rule of thumb to use for your next Kona coffee brewing session. Ideally, don't go beyond 1:19, as this may start making your coffee a bit watery. While this is a golden ratio, you can still adjust it to suit your preferences.

Brewing Method

Coffee to Water Ratio

Regular Coffee Maker




Drip Coffee


Cold Brew


French Press


Moreover, you can add more tablespoons of ground coffee to the brewing basket. This lets you extract more oils and flavors to produce a more concentrated cup of coffee.

Water pour being poured on ground coffee

Check Your Coffee Machine for Malfunctions or Dirt

A dirty or malfunctioning coffee machine would prevent the device from producing the perfect Kona coffee. 

  • Remove blockage in the needles: When there's something blocking the upper and lower needles, you will end up with under-extraction and watery coffee. Use a toothpick or paperclip to remove clogged coffee grounds.
  • Clean the reservoir: Fill the water tank with 1/2 water and 1/2 white vinegar mixture. Let the machine brew until the chamber is empty. Rinse the machine using a new paper filter, then brew a pot of water.

Use the Proper Brewing Temperature

Setting the correct water temperature allows you to maximize flavor extraction, preventing coffee from becoming too watery. The National Coffee Association recommends anywhere between 195 to 205 degrees Fahrenheit as the ideal water temperature for optimal extraction. 

You may need to set a slightly higher temperature for light roasted Kona beans to speed up the extraction. On the other hand, a lower temperature is suitable for dark roasted beans to avoid over-extraction and bitter flavors.

Avoid Adding Ice Cubes

Cold brew is one of the best ways of preparing coffee. Some like to put more ice cubes in during preparation. However, this also means you would unconsciously add water to the mixture when you let it sit out for too long.

The best way is to avoid using iced water cubes. Alternatively, you can make coffee cubes, so you would only add coffee when they melt.

Switch to a More Intense Roast

There are coffee roasts that intentionally taste weak. Another easy way to make coffee less watery is to use dark roast coffee beans. Milk being poured on a cup of coffee

For instance, dark roasted 100% Kona coffee gets roasted longer than medium roast or light roast. In effect, more oils from the beans develop to the surface, making the coffee less watered-down.

Add Milk and Creams

This isn't ideal if you prefer black coffee. However, pouring milk or frothing coffee creams can make watery coffee thicker and velvety.

  • Almond milk: Frothing some almond milk is a great way to change consistency because the foam would eventually mix with the coffee. Besides, almond milk is among the healthiest dairy choices for coffee since it contains less than 60 calories per serving.
  • Heavy or whipped cream: Mix in a good amount of whipped or heavy cream to make the coffee thicker.
  • Condensed milk: Adding condensed milk can make coffee less watery yet sweeter.

Use the Right Tamper Size

A right-sized tamper creates good resistance, enabling the water pressure to work hard to saturate the coffee grounds. In effect, it can extract more of the coffee flavors. Consequently, this ensures you get all of the notes of coffee, like the sweet, nutty, and fruity notes of Kona coffee.

Check if your tamper is slightly smaller than the espresso machine's filter basket's inside diameter. In this way, you can ensure that the coffee will not get watery when compacting the ground coffee. Likewise, this prevents tamper binding.


You can make coffee less watery by changing the grind size, adjusting the water ratio, using the right brewing temperature, and switching to a more intense roast. Alternatively, avoid using ice cubes, or add milk and creams. With these tips, you can fully experience the taste of 100% gourmet Kona coffee.