Do You Need Espresso Beans To Brew Espresso?
Do you need espresso beans to brew espresso? This can be one of the most confusing parts of the coffee/espresso equation. This post addresses this question directly.
If you’re an espresso lover, it is common to try to brew it at home. However, you might be wondering how to prepare it. It’s at this point that many people ask themselves ‘Do you need espresso beans to brew espresso?’ More specifically, you might also be wondering the exact type of beans you should use.
Clarifying an Area of Great Confusion
In this article, I'll be answering a few questions at once, all of which are related to the fundamental confusion about whether you need a specific type of bean to brew espresso. Like many of the questions surrounding proper espresso brewing, the answer to ‘do you need espresso beans to brew espresso’ is not as simple as it seems.
Here’s how the answer looks:
- Yes, you do need espresso beans to create real espresso.
- But don’t let this guideline confuse you. The truth is that all espresso beans are coffee beans. The only difference between the two is in the roasting and brewing processes.
Don’t worry if you’re still a little confused. The rest of this article is dedicated to helping you clear up this confusion and provide a few tips on the best ways to brew real espresso.
First, let’s get this straigh: espresso beans come from the coffee bean. There is no specific espresso bean at all. Espresso beans are nothing more than coffee beans that are roasted and brewed differently than regular beans.
Here’s a quick comparison of espresso beans and regular coffee beans:
- At first, espresso beans and coffee beans are exactly the same.
- It is only through the roasting, grinding, and brewing processes that espresso is created.
- Typically, espresso beans are roasted darker. This additional roasting gives espresso its distinctive flavor.
- Espresso beans are also grounded much more finely than regular coffee beans
- To make drip coffee, hot water simply sifts through the coffee grounds
- For espresso, you need much higher water pressure to extract the espresso from the grounds.
The end result of this process is a coffee with an intense, bold flavor and a concentrated amount of caffeine. Usually, espresso has a more textured and powerful flavor than regular coffee. One of the most recognizeable features of espresso is the thin foamy layer of crema on top.
Now, let’s take a closer look at the coffee beans themselves.
As defined earlier, espresso beans are coffee beans. It’s important to properly ground and roast coffee beans to achieve delicious coffee. Coffee beans are roasted and prepared for brewing other coffee beverages. You can roast coffee beans from light to dark roasted.
Light-roasted coffee beans are heated for a short time preventing the burnt taste and look. They have higher acidity content. They are best used for cold brew coffee.
Medium-roasted coffee beans are heated after reaching the second crack of coffee beans. They are colored dark brown. It has a little consistency in texture. And it has a little over flavor than light-roasted coffee beans.
Dark-roasted coffee beans have a shiny and oily bean cover. These beans are heated to more than 100 degrees Fahrenheit. They have an intense and fuller flavor. The roasting process for these beans produces a bittersweet flavor because of the high levels of heat.
Now, you know which roasted coffee beans to use for brewing espresso drinks. But it is also worth mentioning that the way you brew your coffee also contributes significantly to its taste. This is evidence by the way the proper flavor of espresso drinks is achieved by the right brewing process.
Types of Espresso Beans
The most common species of coffee beans used for espresso are the Arabica and Robusta coffee beans Both types of bean determine much of the flavor of the coffee that's eventually extracted from them.
Arabica coffee beans have less caffeine. They create coffee with a mild and balanced flavor. Arabica beans also have a darker color when not roasted. Lastly, Arabica beans have a more elongated shape than Robusta beans.
Robusta coffee beans have a bold and slightly bitter taste. They have more caffeine content than Arabica beans. They also have less flavor and are often used for instant coffee. Lastly, robusta beans have a rounder shape and cost less than the Arabica variety.
4 Tips for Choosing the Right Beans
Now that we have identified what is espresso beans and where it comes from? And given you the details of what are available types of espresso beans. With the information we gathered, you have now understood what the qualities of coffee beans are. You can now decide which coffee beans to choose for your espresso.
To prepare the best espresso taste, you have to find the best coffee beans. We have decided to share with you some tips for choosing the right coffee beans. And hopefully, this guide will answer the long-debated topic, do you need espresso beans to brew espresso?
Here are some tips for choosing the best coffee beans.
- Achieving coffee beans freshness – you should consider the freshness of your coffee beans. You should choose how it is packed. Understand when the expiration date is. Here’s a quick tip which coffee beans bag to buy in the supermarket or roasters. You should take coffee beans for not more than 90 days.
- Roasting type – you should determine which roasting type you like for your espresso. You can choose light-roasted, medium roasted coffee beans or dark-roasted coffee beans.
- Coffee blend – getting your favorite espresso taste should come naturally. Specify which flavor, consistency, and aroma you like to your espresso. You should consider the burnt aftertaste to your espresso if you select dark-roasted coffee beans.
- Choosing which type of coffee beans – this could be easily decided. If you have a limited budget, you can choose Robusta. Plus, it will give you more crema on your espresso shot. But it is known that the best espresso tastes come from Arabica coffee beans.
The Right Way to Brew Espresso
Whether you are using an espresso machine or manually preparing an espresso drink, it's important to know how to brew your coffee beans. Hopefully, you will be informed about the case, do you need espresso beans to brew espresso?
Below, I've listed the steps on how to brew your coffee beans to create an espresso without an espresso machine.
- Grind your coffee beans till finely ground
- Add the ground coffee. If your pot has a basket filter. You can use it to filter ground coffee beans.
- Fill the pot with water. Boil the water.
- Wait for the coffee to reach the proper boiling point until the body of the coffee thickens a bit. It takes around 3-4 minutes.
- Press the pot lid and pour it on the coffee cup.
- Your espresso drink is prepared.
Do You Need Espresso Beans to Brew Espresso?
Now you understand the relationship between coffee beans and espresso beans. You also understand the best way to brew espresso. Equipped with this knowledge, you can now answer yes to the question ‘Do you need espresso beans to brew espresso?’
Some people prefer regular coffee, some like espresso bean better. But the question is, can I use regular coffee for espresso? People might think, “Of course not! Espresso needs espresso beans”. Absolutely not.
How many espresso beans in a shot? If you’ve ever asked yourself this question, this post will provide you the answer. Here’s the short version.
Are espresso beans different than coffee beans? This question might seem simple on the surface, but there are many complexities involved in answering it.