Caffenol anyone ? Why not!

Those who know me, know that I am a coffee drinker. I was intrigued when I learned that you can process black and white film in coffee …

There is a lot of info on the internet and equally lots of recipes you can go by.

I have decided to go ahead and download The Caffenol cookbook from

All you need is 3 ingredients. You can buy it easily in any shop. Then you take your scales out and follow the recipe. As easy as that. The only thing you need to be careful about is the amount of sodium carbonate (washing soda). Read cookbook and follow exactly what it says and you will be fine. Remember to get sh**t coffee, the worst you can buy. I bought the cheapest they had in ALDI superstore!

My recipe of choice was Caffenol C-M, the main reason being that I had no Potassium Bromide which is needed for any other caffenol developers.

I decided to do “quick” portraits of my kids on 4×5 and processed the shots in Caffenol.  Also, this was the first time I used my MPP camera for portraits. 

I made my exposures and then mixed up the developer. It was easy enough. What I like about large format photography is the ability to process individual shots. That’s why I made the decision to test caffenol on 4×5 instead of 35 mm film.

According to the Caffenol cookbook temperature needed to be 20C  and I developed sheets for 15 minutes in trays. Then stop bath and fix with Ilford rapid fixer.


Here is the result:

What do you think?

It’s quite cool that you can do this with coffee and I’m pleased with the results.

As a next step, I will try to get pottasium bromide and will experiment more.

Did you ever try caffenol? What recipe did you use?  Have you got any special recommendation for me?

Please get in touch and let me know below. I will really appreciate the input .



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