Don’t you hate kitchen appliances that are only good for one thing? I definitely do. I live in an apartment with a very small kitchen, so the more ways I can use an appliance, the better! I was recently given a french press for free by X-Chef in exchange for writing an article about it. I’m delighted to say that my new french press is a great addition to my kitchen, and I want to share with you 10 uses for your french press so you can also become a french-press-advocate!
1. Making coffee. The most obvious use for a french press is for making coffee. It’s a great alternative to a coffee maker because it takes up less counter space (and as you’re about to read, it has many other uses!).
2. Steeping loose leaf tea. I love tea. Don’t get me wrong, coffee is great, but I like to start off my morning with a cup of tea before diving into coffee because I like to ease into my caffeine intake. Loose leaf tea is so beautiful, and I have a lot of it, but I find that any time I use a tea strainer, many of the smaller leaves escape into the tea. And while I think loose leaf tea is beautiful, I don’t want to see it in my cup of tea. The great thing about using a french press for tea is that the mesh strainer has holes so tiny that no leaves find their way into your cup! The first thing I used my french press for was tea, and I’m thoroughly impressed.
3. Cold brewing coffee. Cold brew is a trend that I’ve noticed over the past few years that has been gaining popularity. Cold brewing coffee is when you steep coffee grounds in cold water over a long period of time (whereas brewing regular coffee uses hot water, and is a relatively quick process). It yields a strong, concentrated coffee, and is sometimes diluted with water before serving. There are definitely benefits cold brewing coffee rather than just putting hot coffee over ice. While it does take more time, it yields a smoother, richer coffee. And let’s be honest, nobody likes bitter coffee when they could be having smooth, rich coffee.
4. Frothing milk. My whole life is happier now that I know this trick. I love going out to coffee shops and getting lattes and cappuccinos because of the foam on top of the drink. Now I can make that at home! In the picture above I used almond milk and frothed to my heart’s desire! You can see at the bottom where the milk is still dark, and at the top where the milk froth is lighter. Coffee and tea drinking has just upped it’s game thanks to my french press from X-Chef! All you have to do is pump the strainer up and down, and it froths the milk!
5. Making whipped cream. Ok. So I’ll be honest with you, I’ve never tried this one, but I did read a lot about it. I found this particularly useful article that you might want to check out if you want to try making whipped cream in your french press!
6. Rinsing quinoa (and other grains). This is a use I’m so excited about. I use quinoa all the time in cooking, and whenever I try to rinse it in a sieve I always lose so much down the drain. Plus it gets suck in the nooks and crannies of the sieve. Well, struggle no more, quinoa lovers, using a french press to strain quinoa is so simple. You can add more water to rinse it multiple times, and when you’re done just use a tiny bit of water to swirl the loose grains around and add to your pot to cook. If there’s any grains on the plunger, just dip that in the pot and they should come right off.
7. Draining defrosted spinach. I stumbled across someone suggesting using a french press to drain defrosted spinach, and I think it’s a great idea. You can squeeze the liquid out of the spinach so the dishes you cook don’t get watery! Sounds like a win to me!
8. Making infused oils and simple syrups. I am obsessed with infused oils and simple syrups. I think the reason that I love them so much is because I really love bartending. Mixing drinks and making something new and exciting from separate ingredients is such a creative process and having a french press makes it so much easier. Just add your ingredients and let them sit, when you’re done transfer it to another container and because of the strainer, you’ll get clean liquids every time!
9. Rehydrating dried foods. Using a french press is a very simple way to re-hydrate dried foods. I love buying packages of dried mushrooms for stir fries and noodle dishes because they tend to have more of a variety than just buying a package of regular mushrooms and they are also normally cheaper. To rehydrate foods (such as my well-loved mushrooms) just add water for the desired amount of time and once they are rehydrated lightly press on the mushrooms (or whatever you’re rehydrating) and drain. The picture above is from a recipe that’s going to be on the blog soon that uses dried mushrooms, so keep your eyes peeled for that!
10. Mixing drinks. This one is really thinking outside the box. Most times when I want to mix drinks, I go for my cocktail shaker…but because I’m a clumsy girl, I dropped it on the floor and now the seal leaks. Oops! Fortunately, I have a french press now, so I don’t need to worry about that shaker anymore. Just add all your cocktail ingredients to the french press and pump the strainer up and down (similar to frothing milk, but you don’t have to do it quite as much to mix drinks). If you like your drinks “dirty”, feel free to remove the strainer before you pour the mixture into your cup. If you like a strained drink, keep in the strainer, and you’ll have a smooth clean cocktail. I used my french press to mix the ingredients in my homemade lemonade, pictured above.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission from the sale, but the price is the same for you. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."