Hot and soothing, with a fragrance that brings comfort and joy, coffee is an essential part of the day for people all over the world. Many can’t even conceive of the idea of starting the day without a flavorful cup of Joe. Coffee has become integral to morning routines because its natural caffeine provides a jolt of energy and alertness that helps people wake up.
But how much caffeine does each bean offer? We’re taking a closer look below.
How Do Coffee Beans Make Coffee?
The coffee bean plant is what provides all of the joy coffee brings to the world. This plant grows in tropical areas as a large evergreen shrub. There are two major coffee bean types, Coffea arabica, also known as Arabica coffee, and Coffea canephora, also called Robusta coffee. The plant yields fruits that mature over the course of nine months. Coffee beans are found within the fruit, typically in pairs.
When coffee fruits are harvested and cleaned, farmers separate the fruit from the coffee seeds, which are later roasted. After the roasting process, the green coffee beans are considered whole bean coffee. Roasting greatly affects the beans’ flavor. For example, longer, hotter roasting will generate a more intense taste and aroma in the coffee beans.
Next, the coffee is ground in a coffee bean grinder. The final product may be coarsely ground or finely ground, depending on what coffee brewing methods the brewer plans to use. Coffee bean brewing methods that work quickly (like when you make a cup of espresso) need a finer grind. Meanwhile, those that take longer, such as a drip coffee maker, require a coarser grind.
The Caffeine in Coffee Beans
In a single coffee bean, there are about 6 milligrams of caffeine; however, the exact measurement depends on the variety used in the coffee. For example, Arabica coffee has about 12 milligrams of coffee per gram, while Robusta coffee has about 22 milligrams per gram.
If you want more caffeine, you may be tempted to opt for Robusta coffee. However, this type of coffee is significantly more bitter with a much less complex flavor. Most coffee connoisseurs find Robusta much less pleasant to drink than Arabica.
Some people believe that the roasting style of the coffee bean also affects the caffeine level. Specifically, it is thought that darker roast coffee beans have more caffeine than lighter roasts. This is actually an incorrect assumption. Both light and dark roast coffee beans generally have the same amount of caffeine. The darker roasted coffee beans may make coffee with a stronger flavor, but that has nothing to do with the amount of caffeine that ends up in the brew.
Coffee Brewing and Caffeine Levels
While the basic levels of caffeine in coffee beans are quite consistent, the brewing method you choose does affect the caffeine level in the final cup. When you know how to brew coffee beans correctly, you can adjust the amount to what you might need on any particular day.
Here’s a quick guide to the caffeine levels of common coffee brewing methods:
- Coffee made using a French press has some of the lowest levels of caffeine, averaging about 108 milligrams of caffeine per 8-ounce cup.
- Drip coffee-making methods, or those made using a filter, have around 145 milligrams per 8-ounce cup.
- Coffee made in a percolator averages about 200 milligrams per 8 ounces.
In general, methods that have longer brewing times and finer ground coffee have higher levels of caffeine.
Get Your Caffeine Fix with Help from Café Brew
From coffee brewing tips to replacement carafes and more, Café Brew has everything you need to make your morning cup of Joe. Browse our selection of coffee products or contact us for more information!
Reduce, reuse, recycle—ever since the 1970s, this slogan has been used to encourage people to minimize the number of things they buy and how much they toss in the trash every day. One way to reduce the amount of waste that you send to a landfill is to learn how to compost food products for use in your garden.
If you’re a coffee drinker, composting coffee grounds can help reduce your impact on the environment while providing great nourishment for your plants. Recycling coffee grounds into nutrient-rich compost will also make you feel good about your daily cup of Joe!
Benefits of Coffee Grounds in the Garden
Adding coffee grounds to your compost is a great way to improve the health of your soil and plants. When broken down in a compost pile, coffee grounds are an excellent source of nitrogen that your plants can use to grow tall and healthy. Even though coffee as a beverage is acidic, coffee grounds themselves are pH neutral, meaning they won’t affect the acidity of your soil. This is because all of the acidic compounds in coffee are water-soluble, so they end up in the brew you drink rather than in the leftover grounds.
Coffee grounds also improve the structure of your soil, making it fluffier and more absorbent. Plus, the grounds repel pests like slugs and snails, making them an excellent natural insect repellent!
Methods of Composting Coffee Grounds
If you’re interested in using coffee grounds in compost, there are many ways to do it. Consider one of these popular methods for composting coffee grounds at home:
Add Coffee Grounds to the Soil
One way to use coffee in the garden is to mix it into the dirt. First, sprinkle the grounds directly on top. Then, dig them into the soil with a shovel or trowel to incorporate them. If you leave them on the top of the soil, they’ll create a crust that repels water. However, if you don’t want to dig, you can cover the coffee grounds with leaves or other kinds of compostable materials. Eventually, they will break down and add nutrients to the dirt.
Add Coffee Grounds to Your Compost Pile
You can add coffee grounds directly to your compost pile. Use equal parts grounds, grass clippings, and dried leaves or another source of carbon (like shredded paper or coffee filters). Then, mix this into your compost and rotate it frequently until it breaks down.
Add Coffee Grounds to Your Worm Bin
If you have a worm bin, you can also add coffee grounds to it. Although slugs and snails aren’t fans of coffee grounds, worms love them. Add the grounds a little at a time so that the worms will slowly get used to them. They’ll eat and digest the coffee and transform it into worm castings that you can use in your garden or on your houseplants.
Composting Coffee Filters and Coffee Pods
You might be wondering, “Are coffee filters compostable?” The answer is yes! Paper coffee filters can also be used in your compost pile. However, you should tear them into small pieces before you add them so that they will break down more easily. Not only is this a great way to dispose of your used filters, but it also adds carbon to your compost.
Wondering how to compost coffee pods, meanwhile? Pod-style coffee makers generate tons of waste each year. Until someone invents 100 percent compostable coffee pods, you will need a tool like the Recycle a Cup® cutter that separates the plastic and foil waste from the compostable filter and grounds. This allows you to recycle the plastic cup and the foil top while composting the paper filter and the coffee grounds.