Light Roast Coffee is a bit of a mystery, at least in Western society. Frankly, most of the people don’t even know what kind of roast they drink every day. This is why we’ve made a short light roast coffee guide, to get you acquainted with this special roast type.
First of all, for this variety of “java” , beans are heated to a temperature of about 377.5 ° F (about 191°C). To be more specific, temperatures from 355 and 400 F° (or from 179 to 204° C) are ideal.
Light roast coffee has no oils, which are the “trademark” of beans that are roasted at higher temperatures. At temperatures higher than 450°F (232°C), oils from the center of the beans start to evaporate and form a visible layer around the beans. Thanks to this process, oils are easily extracted during brewing.
This “java” also rather acidic. Some people love this, others hate it, and it’s up to you to decide. People with gastrointestinal problems and especially acid reflux might want to stay away from light roast coffee. These beans have a grainy taste and a less full body.
It’s important to note that not all sorts of beans will yield good results when lightly roasted. People often say that these variants have a “complex” taste. The taste is complex because the beans more or less retained their original structure, and because lighter roasts sometimes result in an unbalanced product. By “unbalanced” we mean that some beans are roasted more than others. However, this can be precluded by choosing the right sort of beans.
Mind that the type of roasting is unrelated to caffeine levels. Although the relative amount of caffeine varies concerning the variety of coffee and origin, the temperature used won’t affect it much.
Light Roast Coffee Buying Guide
There are numerous factors that you need to consider, but, for the sake of briefness, we’ll only mention the most important ones.
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- Bean Origin
We’ve elaborated more thoroughly on this subject in another text, but we simply have to mention it here, as it’s so important. Even though there are only two main species of Coffea plant, Arabica and Robusta, there are many sub-species and varieties that are specific to a certain area. Indonesian coffee is completely different from, say, Ethiopian beans.
Speaking of Ethiopian species, Yigarcheffe (one of the most popular ones) is sometimes roasted on lower temperatures, but some people argue that Yigarcheffe is the best when roasted on high temperatures (above City Roast).
Latin American varieties (like, for instance, Nicaraguan, Panamanian, and Honduran) of Arabica have a bright and slick taste. On the other hand, Indonesian varieties are more complex and rich in taste. Although they can be a bit hard to get used to, they’re worth a try- you won’t be disappointed!
If there was one thing you simply have to remember, it would be the fact that light roast coffee is heated to temperatures ranging from 355 to 400°F (or 179 to 204 °C). This means that there is a whole spectrum of light roast coffee, and not only just one category. Main varieties are:
- Light City
- Half City
So pay attention to this important aspect. Lower temperatures will result in more acidic, and lighter coffees, while the opposite stands for higher temperatures. This is a piece of important advice for people who buy whole beans.
Lighter roasts are harder to grind and extract. People who grind these kinds of beans for the first time find themselves amazed when they see how hard it is to get the grinding right. For those who are making espressos, it would be wise to brew longer shots, to extract everything possible. Especially if you’re making espressos, you would want to get this right. Fine grounds are used for espressos, and putting coarser grounds in your portafilter will result in a bland, uninviting drink.
To conclude, you’d have to be more patient and careful to get the light roast coffee beans right.
- Type of the drink
Generally speaking, there aren’t many constraints concerning this aspect. Feel free to experiment by making a lot of different coffee drinks using various roast styles.
10 Best Light Roast Coffees
The Ultimate Cup
By far, Nicoletti Roast Beans are the best fresh product on our list, in our opinion at least. First of all, these are whole beans, so you’ll be able to grind them yourself, which adds even more pleasure and style to the whole process of grinding and brewing. Secondly, the price is more than acceptable- only $23.95 for 2.2 lb or 0.68 per ounce. This is an extremely good deal, especially when compared with some other, “fancier” articles we’ve included in our list.
Nicoletti products are roasted in Brooklyn, New York, and they are suitable for most espresso machines and stovetop coffee makers. Each bag has a roast date stamp, so you’ll know exactly when your product has been roasted. We emphasize this because other companies usually don’t put roast date stamps on their labels. Amazon coffee, for, instance, won’t give you this information.
We’ve only mentioned the fresh ground beans. There are many K-Cup light roast flavors. The hazelnut flavor is one of the most popular ones. Even though these products are artificially flavored, we wouldn’t regard this as a problem. Some products from the last list are also artificially flavored. Certain reviewers might think that this is a big problem, but it isn’t necessarily so. K-Cup light roast coffees have their own “charm”, and they can be as tasty as even the best product from our list of fresh ground products.
K-Cup products are brewed with Keurig machines, and these makers will get you a nice cup of your favorite caffeinated drink in no time.
Keurig makers are single-cup makers. They became popular because they solved the biggest flaw of drip makers. With these products, you would usually make a lot of coffee which will then sit around doing nothing. As a result, you end up with lots of cold, stale drink nobody wants to drink.
Keurig products are fast, efficient, and practically have limitless possibilities. Before you do choose a K-Cup that’s perfect for you, bear in mind that not all K-Cups are compatible with all Keurig makers. To be 100% sure, you would want to buy a K-Cup made by Keruig, but there are many non-Kuerig K-Cups on the market, and some of them are quite good. You just have to be careful and see if these non-Keurig K-Cups are compatible with your maker.
5 Best K-Cup Light Roast Coffees
|AmazonFresh 80 Ct. K-Cups, Just Bright Light Roast, Keurig K-Cup Brewer Compatible
|$30.68- 80 count
$0.38 per count
|Green Mountain Roasters Breakfast Blend, Keurig Single-Serve K-Cup Pods, Light Roast Coffee, 48 Count||$46.23-50 count
0.96$ per count
|Erie Island Jamaican Me Nuts Light Roast Coffee Single Serve – 12 Count||$9.99- 12 count
0.83 $ per 1 count
|Caribou Coffee Daybreak Morning Blend, Single ServeK-Cup Pod, Light Roast Coffee, 72||96 count- $54.99
0.57$ per count
|Amazon Brand – 100 Ct. Solimo Light Roast Coffee Pods, Morning Light, Compatible with Keurig 2.0 K-Cup Brewers||$22.03 – 100 count
0.23$ per count
The Ultimate K-Cup- in our opinion is, of course, Caribou Daybreak Morning Blend. Many happy customers were so kind to leave a review on Amazon’s page, and there should be absolutely no problems with this product. This product is also Keurig-certified, which means that it will be comfortable with most if not all Kuerig makers.
We’ve only mentioned 15 different products. 5 of these are K-Cups, which are mostly used in office settings. And indeed, thanks to Keurig’s machines, brewing a nice tasty cup of “java” was never this easy!