7 Genius Ways to Keep Your Coffee Hot for Hours
Let me guess: You prep your morning mug of piping-hot coffee and jump into your typical a.m. routine: Make breakfast, walk the dog, jump in the shower, answer a few emails. By the time you're finally sitting down and taking your second sip of the day, your java's reached an exceedingly unappetizing lukewarm temp. Sure you can zap it, but you'll completely alter the flavor profile of your coffee. The microwave will give it an off, bitter taste—and down the drain it goes.
Luckily, there are a few easy tricks that will keep your coffee hot long past your marathon morning.
1 Transfer your brew to a thermal mug
Forget all morning, double-walled vacuum insulated mugs will keep coffee hot the entire day. If you’re on the go, make sure to grab one that won’t leak and can fit nicely into your car’s cup holder, like those from OXO. But if you’re working from home and just need to make it from the kitchen to the study, go for one with a comfortable handle and easy-sipping lid, like this one from Yeti.
2 Preheat your thermos
While a well-insulated thermos will maintain the desired temperature of your coffee for hours, preheating your thermos before you fill it will extend the time your coffee remains hot even longer. The process is incredibly easy: Simply pour 2 cups of boiling water into the thermos and let it sit for five minutes with the lid secured tightly on the flask. Empty the flask and pour in your freshly brewed coffee for an all-day piping hot brew.
3 Wrap your French press, pot, or mug in a koozie
A simple way to preserve your coffee is to use a koozie (aka cosy). By this, we mean to invest in an affordable insulated fabric to cover your French press pot or mug in. You’ll find thousands of pretty designs to choose from in various sizes—from tall or venti to versions with neoprene slings—that will extend your coffee's lifespan by hours.
4 Get a cup warmer for the car
The only thing worse than being stuck in traffic is sitting with cold, bitter coffee in traffic. Investing in a digital cup heater that connects to your vehicle will be extremely beneficial for keeping your coffee warm, especially during the winter season. Most will comfortably fit the tumbler’s length or the regular take-out cup. Also, these devices often feature spill resistant lids and a non-slip base, so your coffee remains hot and won't leak.
5 Try a mini hot plate (or repurpose your candle holder)
Mini hot plates designed for maintaining the temperature of warm beverages are incredibly easy to use: Simply plug in the cord, tap the switch, and rest your mug on top. Many offer variable temperature settings (because we all know those who like their coffee barely-hot and others that prefer scalding). And in case you’re wondering, it won’t take up much of your desk or countertop real estate. BTW, many candle warmers can be repurposed for this task, too—just make sure the cup you’re using isn’t a plastic or synthetic material prone to melting.
6 Invest in an immersion heater
Immersion heaters are a cost-effective (think less than $10) and quick fix for cold coffee. All you have to do is place the wand in your beverage and then plug it into a socket. In a few minutes, you will have coffee that is just the right temperature.
7 Use an app-enabled digital mug
A smart mug will help keep your coffee at the optimal temperature for as long as you need it to, so investing in one of these means you’ll never have to take a sip of a lukewarm beverage again. Our favorite, the Ember mug, is super easy to control thanks to a phone app that will let you pick any temperature (down to the exact degree). It’s equipped with a long-lasting battery which will ensure your coffee stays at the exact temperature you want for hours and automatically turn off when you’re done drinking. While this is a pricier option, it’s easily the most effective solution.
This story originally appeared on realsimple.com