You may have heard of (or tried) stovetop espresso at some point and may be wondering, is it different from regular espresso? If it is different, is it better? The answer is Yes and Yes. Although on the surface, the two may not seem so different, their health benefits and taste are quite different from one another.
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In many ways, stovetop espresso can be more affordable than regular espresso, it is much cheaper and more widely available than home espresso machines. Not to say you can find cheap espresso machines, but stovetop espresso mixers will typically be more affordable.
How are Stovetop Espresso and Regular Espresso Different?
Before I talk about each of these in their own right, I need to go over the main differences, to clear up any confusion later on.
- Stovetop espresso is more commonly referred to as “Moka”. Moka’s have a few different sub-categories, but the most typical is the Moka-Express.
- Stovetop espresso is typically found to be healthier than regular espresso because of its caffeine content.
- Regular espressos can obtain a richer taste and are much thicker than stovetop espressos. This is largely because of the speed at which a regular espresso is produced.
Health benefits of stovetop espresso will be a recurring theme in the differences here, as those are some of the most significant features of stovetop espresso that make it so much different from regular espresso.
With the basics covered, let’s get into each of these methods individually.
Is Stovetop Espresso(Moka) Better than Regular Espresso?
I firmly believe that stovetop espresso is much better than regular espresso for multiple reasons. One of the main reasons is stovetop espresso has a nice balance with its caffeine content.
Typically with regular(real) espresso, you will find high concentrations of caffeine. While in certain situations, this caffeine concentration can help, it can do a bit more harm than good if it is not burned off. Moka has a nice balance with its caffeine content because it doesn’t overload it, yet it doesn’t provide so little that you hardly feel the kick. Espresso has a roughly 1:4 ratio to Moka with its caffeine level.
Moderating caffeine intake can help you with a healthy diet. Caffeine can help in many aspects of our lives and, when monitored usage is applied, we function much better. Coffee before exercising can be especially helpful, as fatigue hits slower when you are caffeinated.
The main difference between a Moka and a “Moka Express”, as the stovetop espresso is called, is that stovetop espresso makers are Moka Pots modified to froth milk with the coffee and mix it during the brewing process, allowing for a more espresso feel.
Aside from this, they are largely still typical moka pots.
When it comes to the technical side, avoid making the pot too hot, as you could potentially burn the grounds. The grind for stovetop espresso is generally slightly finer than your average espresso grind, allowing for a bit of a faster process.
A big bonus to stovetop espresso is that, like regular espresso, it doesn’t use a paper filter. This allows it to retain many of the oils and such that makes espresso so beneficial. This, combined with the even caffeine intake, will help you feel more rejuvenated.
If you are interested in getting a moka pot/moka express pot, I would recommend getting this Bialetti Espresso maker. It is cost-effective and is manufactured by the most popular moka express pot companies.
I would really say that if you are looking for a healthy solution, stovetop espresso can be a great medium towards getting the most out of your coffee in the morning.
Is Regular Espresso better than Stovetop Espresso?
The answer to this is a resounding no. While espresso does have many benefits to it, these are more lopsided than in moka express. Espresso does have many benefits that make it better than many other coffee methods. For example, it still gets the oils and such out of it that most coffee methods don’t. If you don’t mind the high caffeine content, it can be a good thing to get you going in the morning and push you through that morning jog.
The high caffeine content can be good in many situations if you really need it, but if that caffeine isn’t used up, it can cause heart problems if built up over too many cups a day.
Espresso, like moka express, is versatile. It requires no specific roast level or bean blend. Bean blends can vary widely and depend on the blend you use, it can have a large impact on caffeine content and taste. You can find our thoughts on some of the best bean blends, here.
Espresso is something that people do commonly drink in social settings and the machines are priced to match. Most espresso machines are very costly, so if you don’t plan on going to a cafe, you may be out of luck for getting espresso. There are many different variations to the common espresso; Starbucks is a wonderful example as they can make an espresso in a plethora of different ways.
Stovetop espresso(moka express) can be made fairly easily and is equal to the espresso in many ways- you can get a moka express in many of the same places you can get an espresso- and I would definitely say that trying a moka express can be an experience.
So aside from caffeine levels, I would say that, really, the only reason to choose moka express over espresso is that stovetop espresso makers are much cheaper than any espresso machine you can find. It is a great alternative to spending that much money.
So Stovetop Espresso or Regular Espresso?
The overall winner is stovetop espresso, or moka express. The main reason for this is it’s like real espresso, but healthier.
Stovetop espresso will largely have the same consistency as regular espresso, unless you drink the straight syrupy form, because the milk is mixed in on top of all the oils and minerals it still provides.
Another big health factor is the caffeine content in regular espresso, being that it’s so high, can cause health issues like caffeine dependence later in life. While coffee is not the sole reason for issues like this, such high concentrations of caffeine no doubt help along issues like these. So if you’re looking to be healthier and more conscious of your general well-being, go with stovetop espresso.
I encourage you to check out the health section of our website. We cover multiple topics surrounding the health benefits of coffee and how they can affect your day to day life. It’s definitely worth checking out.