Simple Swap: Cloth Coffee Filters

One easy simple swap I've made on my Zero Waste Journey is to get reusable, cloth coffee filters. This hasn't changed my coffee routine at all, except to eliminate paper filters.

I used to buy recycled, compostable disposable filters to use in my pour over coffee maker. I still don't think this is a terrible choice, as every part is recyclable or compostable. But the cloth filters cut down waste even further. The particular ones I bought (Coffee Sock) did come packaged in a plastic bag with a cardboard card. I recycled both.


I use the filters 4-6 times before washing them, first in the sink with warm water to get most of the coffee out, then in the washer (careful to put them in with dark colors as coffee does stain). Between uses, I dust out the grounds into the compost or a jar to save for soups, face washes, or cleaning scrubs.

Water runs thru the cloth filters faster than the paper ones, so I adjusted my Burr grinder to be a little finer. I buy my beans locally, usually from Asbury Park Roastery. They have many organic roasts, are so nice, and only 3 blocks from my house!


These cloth filters are made from cotton, and seem very easy to make. But I think that these ones will last me a long time. I've been using them for a few months now, and besides staining from the coffee, they're holding up very well. I wouldn't want to wash these filters between every brew, but that's just me. It certainly wouldn't be difficult. 

What method do you all use to make your daily coffee or tea?