Last Updated: March 2020
When brewing coffee, most people choose ordinary disposable paper filters. However, you may want to consider a reusable gold filter for a number of reasons. Is a gold or paper filter right for you? Here are a few things you should consider before making your choice.
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The main reason why most people choose paper filters is convenience. There’s no messy cleanup involved-when you are done brewing a pot of coffee, simply throw them away. Paper coffee filters are also compostable in the event you can’t bear the thought of adding more waste to your local landfill.
On the other hand, gold filters are reusable, and will therefore prevent excess waste. You do need to wash them after every use, but that only requires rinsing them in running water on most days. You will occasionally need to wash them in hot soapy water, but it’s not something you’ll need to do often.
Filters can Affect Taste
Perhaps the most important consideration when choosing between gold and paper filters is taste. Paper filters are finer and will therefore prevent more oils from getting into your brewed coffee. This means that coffee run through a gold filter is likely to be richer tasting and somewhat stronger than coffee brewed with paper filters; the aroma may be slightly stronger as well. If you prefer your coffee more on the mild side, you will probably prefer paper filters.
Difference in Appearance
The fact that paper filters block more oils means that your coffee will look different when brewed with a gold filter. Gold-filtered coffee will likely be darker and may also have a somewhat cloudy appearance. Coffee brewed with a paper filter will be lighter in color and more translucent. Again, this is a matter of personal preference. Some people notice a problem with sediment in the bottom of their pots when using metal filters as well.
Paper filters must constantly be replaced. This means their cost can add up greatly over time, particularly if you tend to brew more than one pot of coffee each day. While some people do reuse paper filters, doing so could result in coffee grounds getting into your coffee.
Gold filters never need replacing, and will provide you with amazing results for several years. While they may cost more initially, you will actually save a great deal of money on them over their lifespan.
Coffee is known to raise LDL or “bad” cholesterol levels. The culprit is actually the oils inside your coffee beans. Since more of these oils pass through gold filters, you may want to avoid using them if you have high cholesterol or are at risk for developing it. Paper filters are also more effective at eliminating cafestol and kahweol, two other substances that have an adverse effect on cholesterol.
As you can see, there are advantages and disadvantages to both paper and gold coffee filters. You should consider all of them very carefully in order to make the right choice.