How to Make Coffee in Large Coffeemakers

Caprice Castano

Preparing coffee for a large group requires a large coffee maker called an urn. These types of volume coffee pots percolate the coffee in a self contained unit that then stores and dispenses the coffee with a spout.

Brewing coffee in large coffee makers can still produce great results with at little know-how.

The process to make the coffee is relatively simple, however attention to detail and familiarity with the correct levels of water and coffee will ensure your guests get a good cup of coffee.

  1. Familiarize yourself with the coffee urn you will be using. The basic design consists of a large pot, a post, a basket that the post is inserted into and rests on, and a spout. There should be lines inside to show water levels but not all models have this.

  2. Decide on the amount of coffee you are making and calculate the water and coffee amounts you will need. The ratio for coffee is two to four ounces of ground coffee for every half gallon of water, depending on how strong you prefer the coffee taste. Use less for a milder brew, more for intense flavor. Keep in mind the urn will continue heating the coffee and the flavor will be intensified as it sits.

  3. Clean the urn before using. If it was stored this will remove any dust or debris and ensure nothing contaminates the coffee. Be sure the urn remains unplugged while you prepare the coffee.

  4. Fill the urn with clear cold water to the desired level. Some urns have a minimum brew amount that needs to be made for the unit to work properly.

  5. Add the post and basket to the urn. If the basket requires a filter, place the filter inside, making sure there are no gaps on the edges to allow coffee to spill through. Nothing ruins coffee faster than grounds floating in the cup.

  6. Place the pre-measured amount of ground coffee in the basket. Place the lid on the urn tightly, and plug the unit in. If there is a switch to turn it on, do so now, but most only require being plugged in.

  7. Remove the basket when the coffee has finished brewing so that the coffee does not become bitter.