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How to make a coffee filter from a paper towel

If you are ever finding yourself in need of coffee and you don’t have a coffee filter then this tip is for you!  We recently traveled to Orlando and stayed in a gorgeous vacation home.  My husband woke up and realized there was NO coffee filters. We had coffee but no filters.

How to make a coffee filter from a paper towel - great tip for travel!


Instead of going out for expensive coffee or purchasing filters for a coffee maker that we don’t have at home we got creative and made our own coffee filters from paper towels.  If you ever find yourself find yourself in the same boat there is no need to worry, just use this simple life hack and you too will have a fresh cup of coffee in a pinch.

How to make a coffee filter from a paper towel:

1.  Step One:  Take a full sized paper towel and lay flat

2.  Step Two:  Fold the paper towel in half (vertically)

3.  Step Three:  Fold the paper towel in half again (now in a square)

4.  Step Four:  Take the folded paper towel and create a “pocket” for your coffee grinds and place into the coffee pot (where the filter would go)

5.  Step Five:  Add your coffee grinds

6.  Step Six:  Fold the edges under so that the coffee pot lid closes

7.  Step Seven:  Add water and turn on

8:  Step Eight: Enjoy your coffee

It is that simple!  Hard to believe that you can easily make a coffee filter with a paper towel when you are in a bind!  This is a great tip to keep in mind when you are traveling on vacation like we were or you wake up and find yourself without a coffee filter.

We hope this tip helps you as much as it did us while on vacation. You know you can’t start your day without coffee so in a pinch this life hack will do. We used it all week and didn’t buy a single coffee filter while on vacation.

Be sure to check out these coffee posts:

How to clean your keurig

Coffee Recipes Roundup

DIY Containers – How to reuse your Coffee Mate Containers

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Creamer Recipe

Miss Debbie’s Coffee Bread Recipe

Homemade Tiramisu Recipe



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  1. Haha, I’m in Orlando, in a beautiful Vacation home and I just realized I don’t have any coffee filters, so I searched to see if a paper towel could be used! Thanks!

  2. Ha, ha! Ditto the above comment – except replace beautiful, vacation home in Orlando” with “adequate air bnb condo in Washington, DC”! I thought to buy coffee,stevia and creamer – but not filters. Thanks for the helpful tip!

    1. Same thing, but in Virginian Suites. bought my coffee in Costa Rica, but they even gave me free coffee in the hotel, but no filters… WTF.
      Gonna try this. hope it works

  3. I’m working at a post where coffee is the most sought after drink. We ran out of filters I guess and I was searching how to do a make shift version. First thing to pop up. Thanks ^.^

  4. Can’t find tazo chai tea, so went back to the bean. Bought the coffee forgot the filter. Glanced at the paper towel roll but wanted to be sure it would work. 10 minutes later caffeine ectasy. Be sure to clean those coffee machines before using. I use vinegar to rinse before using.

  5. Amazing, thank you, I was looking of a way to make coffee filters, and your idea popped up on pintrest, thank you again.

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