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Keep Coffee Hot: How to Keep a Cup All Day

March 09, 2021 5 min read

Keep Coffee Hot

While you might think there's nothing worse than a bad cup of coffee. A delicious cup that you lovingly brewed only to forget about and come back to find cold is worse!

Not only is throwing away bad coffee incredibly wasteful, but it's also indescribably disappointing to have to start the entire brewing process all over again. Multiple times a day!

With these top tips, you can learn all the tricks to keep your coffee hotter for longer, so your java can last through tantrums and interruptions from kids, spouses, co-workers, and customers!

How do you keep coffee warm all day?

If you're sick and tired of lukewarm coffee, check out our 8 top tips for keeping your mug nice and warm for as long as you need.

Preheat your mug

One of the very simplest ways to keep your coffee warmer for longer is to preheat the mug by pouring some hot water into your mug and allowing it to sit for a moment to allow the warmth to spread throughout the cup. Once the water has cooled off (or your coffee is brewed), simply discard the water and pour in your tasty coffee.  

Cold mugs instantly start cooling off your coffee from the second they're poured, so warming the mug first is a fantastic, zero-effort way to keep your coffee from getting cold in minutes.

Coffee mug warmer

Electronic mug warmers are a lifesaver for busy parents or service providers! These ingenious inventions can be plugged into a USB port or even the lighter socket in your car to slowly release more heat into your mug, keeping your coffee hotter for longer.

If you have a long commute, a car mug warmer is even more useful. These devices are usually more secure than a standard car cup holder, so not only will you be able to enjoy hot coffee when you arrive at your destination, but you'll even be able to drive without worrying about spilling that delicious nectar!

Immersion heater

An immersion heater is a little like a mug warmer, but instead of heating the outside of your mug, it sits inside the cup to gently warm your coffee and maintain the optimal temperature.

Immersion heaters are generally electrical and rarely battery-powered, so you'll need to find a power source to use them. However, as so many can be plugged into a USB, they're perfect for plugging into your office computer!

Get a lid

Another basic solution for maintaining a hot cup of coffee is to buy mugs with a lid.

By popping a lid on your coffee cup, more heat will remain inside the mug, allowing you to keep coffee hot for as long as possible without the aid of electric devices.

Thermos

A thermos flask is an ideal solution for keeping large quantities of hot coffee whether you're taking a drive or going on a long walk.

Look for an insulated thermos made from stainless steel, plastic, and silicone, as these tend to be the best materials for heat retention. Most thermoses will approximate how long they can retain heat, with many offering 6+ hours of warmth!

Remember that you get what you pay for when it comes to thermos flasks, so it's beneficial to pay a little more and get one that actually works!

Heating pad

This isn't the most sophisticated cold coffee solution out there, but if you're in a pinch, a heating pad can act as a DIY coffee cup warmer plate. Most offices tend to have a heating pad, and, even if they don't, it's pretty easy to whip up a DIY heating pad! 

Simply warm up the pad, set your mug on it, and wrap as much of a blanket around the sides as you can to enjoy warm coffee throughout the day.

Metal coffee beans

These coffee-warming beans work like absolute magic! These beans go inside the coffee cup as you drink, absorbing thermal energy from your hot coffee until the beverage temperature falls below 140-degrees. At this point, the beans magically (scientifically) release some of the energy they absorbed back into the cup, heating the liquid, and ensuring your drink never gets cold!

You can add more or fewer beans depending on how much coffee you can fit in your cup, and they're large enough that you don't need to worry about accidentally swallowing any!

Scarf

In a coffee-heating emergency? Simply warp a scarf, blanket, or any other insulator around your mug to keep all that lovely warmth inside where it belongs!

Alternatively, you could create the illusion of being a prepared individual and pick up some purpose-made insulating sleeves. These don't have to be made of cardboard: silicone sleeves are the best for retaining heat (and offer a convenient grippy surface), while knitted sleeves are a little less efficient but a lot more fun!  

Common Coffee-Heating Mistakes: 

While some of these might seem silly, if your lovingly prepared pour-over coffee has gone cold a few too many times, you may well have tried at least one of these disastrous coffee warming methods!

Hot Plate

You might think of a hot plate like an extra-large coffee warmer plate. While these items are fantastic for cooking food and heat up almost immediately, the continued, excessive, uneven heat will ruin your coffee. Bitter-tasting and over-extracted is not a solution.

Candle Warmer

Although candle warmers appear to be the perfect size for a coffee cup, they work on the same principles as a hot plate. Sure, they'll heat your coffee, but taking your java from cold and nasty to hot and bitter will only darken your mood!

Microwave

Don't. Just don't.

Yes, you can reheat coffee in a microwave, but any self-respecting coffee drinker will never look at you the same way after!

Microwaves are terrible for warming coffee due to the uneven expulsion of radiation used to heat. This will almost always result in an awful, bitter, burned-tasting coffee that's steaming on the top but cold everywhere else.

At the risk of repeating ourselves… Don't.

Thermal Carafes

Okay, some French press carafes might have some common elements with a thermal insulated flask or coffee cup, and, in theory, this would work to keep coffee hot. However, leaving your coffee in the carafe will only result in over-extracted coffee with none of the flavor and all the dryness. Yuck!

You're going to be far better off lovingly brewing your joe in a high-quality coffee brewer and transferring it into a purpose-built insulated flask or mug than leaving it in the pour-over coffee maker

Which coffee cup keeps coffee hot the longest?

Another brilliant tip for keeping your coffee nice and toasty for as long as possible is to upgrade your cupboard! There are loads of insulated mugs specifically designed to keep coffee hot for as long as possible, which might well be more useful than that old mug you got from some promotional event.

The absolute best mug to keep coffee hot is a stainless-steel vacuum-insulated option. These exceptionally designed beasts can keep coffee hot for up to 12 hours! What could be more impressive than that?

Battery-powered heated coffee mugs are a close second to vacuum insulated options. These will also usually have some insulation and run on battery power to maintain the drink's temperature. Second place as a coffee heater only because they're reliant on battery power: once the battery runs out, your coffee will lose heat as usual!

So, whether you're upgrading your coffee mugs or want to look for a more futuristic solution to keep your coffee warm, we're sure these top tips will help you enjoy delicious, unburned, hot cups of coffee, even when everyone and their dog is desperate for your attention!


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