What Makes Coffee Acidic? (Best solution)

Roasting. One main aspect that determines the acidity of coffee is how it’s roasted. One study showed that the longer and hotter coffee beans were roasted, the lower their chlorogenic acid levels ( 4 ). This suggests that lighter roasts tend to be higher in acidity, while darker roasts are lower.

What coffees are the least acidic?

  • Is all coffee acidic? Coffee Bean: Some coffee beans are less acidic than others. Coffee Roast: Dark roast coffee is less acidic than light roast coffee or medium roast coffee. Coffee Brewing Methods: Different coffee brewing methods produce different acid levels. Cold-brew coffee can be 65% less acidic than other coffee brewing methods.


How do you make coffee less acidic?

You can make coffee less acidic by simply adding milk. The calcium in milk neutralizes some of the acids in the coffee, and many love the way it smooths out the flavor of a cup of coffee. Milk works particularly well in dark-roast coffee, which is typically lower in acidity to begin with.

Why does coffee turn acidic?

Your coffee beans slowly break down over time. The aromatic oils evaporate. The sugars break down. And the one-delicious natural acids start to turn sour and aggressive.

What coffee is not acidic?

Arabica beans have less acid than Robusta beans, so choose a blend with 100% high-quality Arabica. Look for coffee roasted in smaller batches. It’s even better if they roast right before shipping.

Which coffee is more acidic?

There are two primary types of coffee. Arabica beans are more acidic than Robusta beans. Arabica coffee grow and mature more slowly allowing for improved flavor development and higher acidity. Verena Street Coffee only uses 100% Arabica beans in all of our blends, so they will naturally be a little more acidic.

Is pour over coffee less acidic?

First, the combination of high pressure and short extraction time produces a different balance of chemical compounds than the same coffee would in a drip or pour over brew. The darker the roast, the less acidic the coffee because acid molecules break down the longer a bean is in the roaster.

Is coarse ground coffee less acidic?

For more acidity in your cup, grind coarser. For less acidity grind finer. But don’t overdo it, fine grinds mean a speedy extraction and you can end up with a bitter cup.

Is coffee acidic or basic class 7?

The acidity is determined by the pH value. Any solution with a pH value between 0 and 7 is acidic and the solution is basic if the pH is between 7 and 14. The pH value of coffee is between 4.85 to 5.10.

Is decaf coffee less acidic?

Decaf coffee is acidic, but studies have found that it is less acidic than caffeinated coffee. Specifically, it was found that when caffeine was extracted, phenolic acid levels were reduced.

Why is my coffee bitter and sour?

Sour coffee comes down to two things: (1) bad beans and (2) bad brewing. If the beans are under-roasted, they’ll taste grassy and sour. But, chances are, you’re beans are fine—which means you need to make a small adjustment or two to how you make your coffee. Sour coffee is usually under-extracted coffee.

Is Espresso more acidic than coffee?

Is espresso less acidic than coffee? Yes. Roasting a coffee longer results in more decomposing of the healthy chlorogenic acids that give lighter roasts their acidity. This means that an espresso roast will be less acidic than a light or medium roast.

Is light roast coffee more acidic?

Light Roasts Retain Most of the Original Coffee Characteristics. Light roasts have a light brown, tan, color and lack of oil on the roasted beans. They have the highest acidity and are the brightest of the three roast levels.

What coffee can I drink with acid reflux?

Cold brew coffee has a lower amount of caffeine and may be less acidic, which might make it a more acceptable choice for those with GERD or heartburn.

Is medium roast coffee more acidic?

The short answer is no. That’s really a myth but there is a solution, well, kind of. All specialty-grade Arabica coffees have the same pH level. Roast profiles, different coffee varietals, or even different brew methods do not have a substantial effect on cutting down the acidity found in coffee.

What coffee roast is least acidic?

Dark roast coffees tend to be less acidic because they contain fewer compounds that cause stomach cells to produce acid.

Why Are Some Coffees More Acidic Than Others? A Brew & Roast Guide

Acidity is a highly regarded, yet divisive, characteristic of speciality coffee. It is adored by third wave consumers and highly regarded by competition judges, but it is also frequently a source of misunderstanding. So, what exactly is acidity, and why should you be able to detect it in your morning cup of joe? What makes certain coffees more acidic than others is a mystery to me. And how do you make it more or less prominent in your roasting or brewing? Never worry, I’m about to provide answers to all of these questions and many more as well.

This article is also available in Spanish.

It’s time to start brewing.

What Is Acidity?

Acidity has been described in a variety of ways, such as lively, tangy, sharp, bright, fruity, sparkling, and a host of other terms. However, despite the fact that we have a plethora of words for it, none of them adequately describe it. Acidity is a difficult concept to grasp. This is mostly due to the fact that it manifests itself in so many various ways. Increasing the acidity of the coffee has a significant impact on its flavor and fragrance, which can take on the qualities of stone fruits, sweet nectarines, or juicy apples.

The ability to understand a little bit about coffee chemistry can assist roasters (and even brewers) in producing the most flavorful coffee possible in the cup.

Because, as Mané explains, “acidity may either enhance or detract from the overall harmony of a coffee cup.” A higher acidity in a coffee can cause it to taste sour, and this is not something most people enjoy.” And what if there is no acidity?

Image courtesy of Kata Sára

Acidity Under The Microscope

Additionally, Verônica Belchior is a Q grader and is now working on her PhD on the link between chemical components and coffee quality and flavor. The organic acids contained in coffee, according to her, may be split into two categories: chlorogenic acids and chlorogenic acids. Citric, malic, quinic, acetic, succinic, and tartaric acids are some of the organic acids found in nature.

These are the “good,” fruity acids that you want to be able to detect in your cup. “More acidic coffees normally contain key chemicals involved. are organic acids,” adds Verônica of the coffee industry. And they each bring something unique to the table in terms of flavor:

  • Due to the presence of malic acid, which is the same type of acid found in green apples, think of brewed coffee with the juiciness and smooth sharpness of green apples
  • The flavor of citric acid is more citrus-like, as you would have anticipated. Consider citrus fruits such as lemons, oranges, and nectarines. Tartaric acid has a more grape-like flavor, yet it may also be found in large quantities in bananas. In contrast, acetic acid has a vinegary flavor that is less pleasing to the palate

You also have chlorogenic acids, which are broken down into quinic and caffeic acids (usually during the roasting process) after being exposed to heat. The problem is that quinic acids do not have a pleasant flavor. “These molecules are responsible for the bitterness, astringency, and sourness that may be found in the beverage,” Verônica says. As a result, the darker the roast, the more bitter the coffee is, and the lighter the roast, the more acidic the coffee is — but more on that later! Coffee and acidity are being tasted.

Naturally More Acidic: Why Some Green Beans Are Livelier Than Others

According to Mané, if you want to “avoid acidity completely,” you should “start with a coffee that has a very low acid level,” which is a coffee with a low acid concentration. There will always be certain coffees that are more acidic than others, no matter how you brew or roast them. Factors like as the source, variety, processing technique, and environment all have a significant impact on this outcome.


“Each origin has a certain sort of soil properties as well as a specific amount of a specific acid,” says Mané. According to him, “malic acid is more frequent in Kenyan coffees, but citric acid is more prevalent in Colombian coffees,” as an example. Please keep in mind that additional apple-like notes from Kenya and more citrus fruits from Colombia are on the way.


This has a significant impact on how acidic your cup of coffee seems to be when you drink it. The Arabica species, for example, has less chlorogenic acids than other species, which reduces the perceived acidity of the drink. A few kinds, like as the SL-28 that you’ll find in Kenya, have a higher acidity than others. A lot of it has to do with genetics. However, the agricultural circumstances have a role in some of it as well. Certain types are better adapted to being cultivated in colder temperatures than others – and this has an effect on the flavor as well as the texture of the fruit.

Read Getting a Crash Course in Coffee Varieties: Geisha versus Bourbon A coffee plantation in Colombia.


The most sought-after coffee beans are often cultivated at higher elevations, however, to be really honest, this has more to do with temperature than height in most cases. Coffee that is produced at milder temperatures tends to mature more slowly, allowing for the development of more complex tastes in the final product. Compared to coffees cultivated in warmer climates – such as those grown further down the mountain – it is typically more acidic and fragrant when brewed. According to Mané, certain coffee varietals can “produce more acidity if they are cultivated at the appropriate height.” Learn more about it!

by M.A.S.L.


While coffee is commonly referred to as a bean, this is incorrect: it is really the seed of a delicious, fragrant fruit known as a cherry. However, getting rid of this fruit is difficult. There are various possible methods for accomplishing this, and the one that is used will have an affect on the final flavor. Examples include wet/washed coffees that have been pulped and rinsed in water to remove the layers of sucrose and fructose that have accumulated on the beans. The acidity is able to show through since it is not muffled by the sweetness.

More information may be found in Washed, Natural, Honey: Coffee Processing 101. On a raised bed at Fazenda Dois Ermanos in Brazil, natural processed coffee is drying after being roasted. Angie Molina is credited with this image.

How to Control Acidity in Roasting

You cannot generate a taste in coffee by roasting or brewing that does not already exist in the coffee. You may, however, roast it in such a way that the acidity is either highlighted or obscured. First and foremost, you should evaluate the roasting level. Most acids, according to Verônica, “drop in concentration throughout the roasting process,” while others are formed as a result of the decomposition of the roasting components. Consider the process by which the bitter chlorogenic acids can be broken down into the more pleasant quinic and caffeic acids.

  1. The deeper the roast, the more likely it is that these flavors will be obscured by more roasty or even bitter qualities that are present.
  2. It all comes down to how you regulate the heat and airflow during the entire process to bring out the greatest features of the coffee.
  3. However, take care not to go too far and burn your coffee.
  4. If the bean is softer than usual – which is often associated with higher farm temperatures – the more delicate you’ll need to be with the heat.
  5. But keep in mind that eating too soon or for too short a period of time will also result in sourness.
  6. Try roasting and cupping your coffee with different development times and characteristics to see which one you like.
  7. Your insights will grow in number as you continue to practice.
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How to Control Acidity in Brewing

Imagine you have a high-altitude Ethiopian coffee with plenty of effervescent acidity, and the roaster has done an excellent job of highlighting this characteristic. Is it safe to assume you’re in for a good cup of coffee? This is not always the case. Even if you make a mistake in the brewing process, you may end up with a flat beverage. In a same vein, even a chocolaty Brazilian roasted medium-dark might taste acidic if the beans are not fully extracted before grinding. However, what exactly is extraction?

In other words, as soon as the water comes into contact with the coffee grounds, the taste and fragrance chemicals begin to spread into the water, which is known as extraction.

It is first necessary to extract fruity and acidic notes, which are then followed by sweetness and balance, and then lastly bitterness.

Over-extracting, on the other hand, will result in a bitter flavor since the sweetness and acidity will be overpowered. You’re looking for the right balance. So, how do you keep extraction under control? It is important to remember the following golden rules:

  • The finer the grind size, the faster the extraction process takes place (note: extraction time is different to brew time). It is more acidic to use a coarse grind size
  • It is bitterer to use a fine grind size. The longer the brew time, the more time is spent extracting flavor from your coffee. Generally, shorter brews are more acidic, while longer brews are more bitter. The higher the water temperature, the more rapidly the extraction will occur
  • However, too low a water temperature will cause the acids to not extract as quickly. During the brewing process, Mané explains, “We may produce both beneficial and harmful acids. Using hot water will result in significantly more acid development on the brewing cup than using cold brew (one of the hallmarks of cold brew is a fairly mellow acid presence).”

Consequently, for an acidic cup, strive for a somewhat high water temperature combined with a finer grind size and a shorter brew time. If your coffee is turning out sour, grind it finer and brew it for longer. Either way, brew at a cold temperature to minimize acids; however, keep in mind that you’ll need to lengthen your brew time because extraction takes longer at lower temperatures. And keep in mind that, once again, it’s all about striking a balance. If your cup doesn’t taste just right, try altering just one of these variables to get the perfect brew for your taste preferences.

  1. Check out our in-depth information on the subject: Making Coffee with Acidity in MindWhen brewing coffee, there are several ways to emphasize (or reduce) acidity.
  2. Selection and brewing of coffee that is tailored to your own preferences, on the other hand, does not have to be difficult.
  3. Acidity may be found in varying degrees and kinds depending on the roast, variety, processing technique, and provenance of the coffee.
  4. Learn about your own preferences.
  5. Keep in mind that acidity is important for maintaining balance and vibrancy in your brew.
  6. Did you like it?
  7. The authors would like to express their gratitude to Verônica Belchior and Mané Alves for their time and insights.Perfect Daily Grind Would you want to read more articles like this one?

What’s the Deal with Acid in Coffee?

Coffee is frequently referred to be an acidic beverage, but in reality, coffee has a pH of roughly five on the pH scale, making it less acidic than beverages such as beer, orange juice, and even soda. Consequently, when we talk about acid and coffee, we are most commonly referring to the pH level of a beverage rather than the acidity of the beverage. This is the subject of our conversation. Acidity is one of the most important factors in determining how a cup of coffee tastes. The term can be a bit perplexing, though, because when it comes to food, acidity is not typically considered a good characteristic.

However, when it comes to acidity in coffee, this is not the case, because acidity is considered a good characteristic.

Acidity does not relate to the amount of acid present in the food; rather, it refers to a taste note.

What Acids Are in Coffee?

What kinds of acids are we talking about here? Green coffee, in its purest form, has a large number of distinct acids, both beneficial and detrimental. Some of them go throughout the roasting process, while others remain, thus achieving the proper balance in terms of acidity, fragrance, and body is essential while roasting. In this case, one of the most important groups of acids in concern is chlorogenic acids, which also happen to be antioxidants. During the roasting process, these acids are broken down, which is why, according to coffee expert James Hoffman, “the longer and darker the roasting time and temperature of a coffee bean, the lower the perceived acidity tends to be when that coffee is brewed and tasted.” You will see that the darker the roast, the lower the level of chlorogenic acid is if you look at a graph of different coffee roasting degrees.

As a result, many of the lighter roasted coffees that are currently popular have a more prominent acidity in their flavor profile than they did previously.

Another category of acids, known as quinic acids, is also significant in coffee production and consumption.

It is these acids that have an effect on the astringency of a beverage, leading people to experience a bitter sensation in their stomachs after drinking coffee or other beverages containing these acids.

Fresh Coffee Is the Best Coffee

Roasting has an effect on these acids, but so does other processing: During the time that coffee is allowed to sit, certain chemical reactions with these acids take place, changing the level of acidity that we taste when we drink our cup. This is why drinking a cup of coffee that has been sitting on the hot plate for a few hours can be a stomach-churning experience. So you don’t want to drink coffee that has an astringent flavor? Make a new batch of cookies. Anna Brones is a writer who contributes to this site.

She is also the creator of the Foodie Underground website.

How to Reduce Acidity in Coffee (Expert Tips)

The following information is for you if you suffer from acid reflux discomfort after your morning coffee, or if you are concerned about acidity for any other health reason. Despite the fact that we all adore coffee, many folks find it to be too acidic for them. Many various tactics have been discussed in the coffee world regarding how to deal with this annoying problem, and this is a useful guide that summarizes some of the most effective solutions available.

First and foremost, we should discuss a little bit about chemistry – but just a little bit. Then we’ll teach you how to make your coffee less acidic in a matter of minutes!

Is Coffee Acidic or Alkaline?

If you’re suffering from acid reflux problems after your morning cup of coffee, or if you’re concerned about acidity for any other health reason, you’ve come to the perfect location. Many individuals have problems with the acidity of their coffee, despite the fact that we all enjoy it. Many various tactics have been discussed in the coffee world regarding how to deal with this annoying problem, and this is a helpful guide that summarizes some of the more effective solutions. Let’s start with a brief discussion of chemistry, which will be limited in scope.

Alkalizing Additives

Because the ultimate objective of lowering the acidity of coffee is to alter the balance of hydrogen ions in the beverage, one of the most effective ways is to incorporate alkalizing chemicals into the recipe. These include over-the-counter medications such as Tums, but the quickest and most straightforward solution is to simply add some baking soda. Image courtesy of Flickr user Aqua Mechanical under a Creative Commons 2.0 license. Baking soda has a high pH, which indicates that it will reduce the acidity of any other substance to which it is added when mixed together.

This will dissolve and will not leave a significant taste in your mouth thereafter.

Different Brewing Methods

Another option to consider if you’re wanting to lessen the acidity in your coffee and make it more pleasant is to experiment with different brewing techniques. The acidity of cold brew coffee is significantly lower than that of ordinary drip coffee because various chemicals are removed at different rates from coffee beans. Cold brew | Photograph courtesy of New Africa, Shutterstock For more information on what distinguishes cold brew from other beverages, please see our guide. If you drink cold brew coffee often, you’ll be less likely to have acid reflux symptoms.

Purchase coffee beans that are naturally low in acidity.

The Absolute Easiest Method to Reduce Acidity

In the final instance, we have a technique that is so simple that it nearly feels like cheating: merely adding a dash of water to the mix. Consider the tiny bit of chemistry that we studied earlier: water, by definition, is a neutral substance. This implies that adding a small amount of water to your coffee will reduce the relative abundance of hydrogen ions in the cup. This is a foolproof method of increasing the pH of your beverage and making your morning coffee a little more alkaline.

The Bottom Line

Unfortunately, coffee will always have a slight acidic taste to it. This is simply due to the fundamental chemistry that underpins this delectable beverage. However, it is good that there are certain techniques to reduce the acidity, such as purchasing Lifeboost’s delicious low-acid coffee or converting to cold brew coffee.

Take a go at one of these strategies for decreasing acidity in coffee and let us know how it goes. And when everything else fails, why not relax and laugh at these coffee memes? When it comes to coffee, what is the difference between cold brew and iced? Find out more about it right here!

Is Coffee Acidic? What is the PH of Coffee? Tips to Brew Balanced Coffee

The answer is yes: coffee includes acids, which might be problematic for some people. However, while some acidity in a cup of coffee contributes to the flavor, other acids may cause you to experience the unpleasant sensation of heartburn, which affects 60 million Americans every month. Don’t worry whether you’re suffering from GastroEsophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) or simply despise the taste of acidic coffee; we’ve got answers for both. In this post, we’ll discuss the various ways that coffee’s acidity might impact you, as well as some tips for how to alleviate the burn.

Acidity In Coffee – Friend Or Foe?

Coffee beans contain at least 850 different chemicals, each of which contributes to the distinctive flavor and aroma of coffee (1). Whenever we talk about the acidity of coffee, we aren’t always talking about the flavor of sourness or acridity. Poor extraction is a common cause of sour coffee, but it is a discussion for another day.

What is The PH of Coffee?

Acidity is measured using the pH scale, which is as follows:

  • Using the pH scale, we can determine how acidic a solution is.

Not all acids found in coffee are detrimental. Phosphoric acid and malic acid, for example, can make coffee taste sweeter by increasing its sweetness. Other acids, such as citric acid and acetic acid, can lend tartness to coffee when used in small amounts, but when used in large quantities, they can generate sour-tasting coffee. It all comes down to finding the correct mix of acidity. That is one of the most important aspects of making a wonderful cup of coffee. Chlorogenic acid, which sounds terrifying, may be beneficial in the weight-loss process (2).

  • As a result, that dark roast coffee you’ve been admiring may be able to assist you in settling your stomach.
  • You’re probably familiar with the bitter, burnt flavor of old breakroom coffee.
  • Fortunately, there’s a simple solution to this problem: get an insulated coffee carafe and forego the warmer altogether.
  • If the acidity is too strong and the coffee gets sour, people are less likely to like it.
  • “The coffee will have a flat flavor.” To learn more about the chemistry of coffee, you may view a video that goes into further detail on the subject:

Coffee Acid and Health

Some people report stomach pain after consuming coffee, which is frequently ascribed to the acidity of the beverage in question (4). In actuality, it is possible that it is not the acidity of coffee that causes GERD, but rather that coffee might increase the formation of stomach acid (5). Another possibility is the use of caffeine. Heartburn may occur in those who are sensitive to caffeine, since caffeine can relax the muscles of the esophagus, resulting in acid reflux in these individuals.

Drinking too much coffee or switching to decaf might help minimize acid reflux symptoms ( 6 ), so if you’re prone to heartburn, avoid it altogether. Here is a list of decaf coffees that are recommended for you to try. If you’re curious about why coffee tastes sour, check out this entertaining video:

10 Tips To help you avoid or reduce Acidic Coffee

We’ve compiled a list of our top 10 recommendations for dealing with acidic coffee, whether you don’t care for the flavor or the side effects:

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1. Use low-acid coffee beans

There is a growing demand for low-acid coffee beans, which are becoming increasingly popular. These products are made in a method that minimizes their acid content naturally; nevertheless, some of them have ingredients added in order to reduce the burning sensation. Check out this post, which has a list of the top low-acid coffee brands that can be purchased online.

2. Use Arabica beans

Robusta beans, which are poorer in quality and contain more caffeine, are acidic in comparison to Arabica beans, which are normally less acidic. If you want to lessen the acidity of your brew, using an Arabica bean might be a wonderful starting point – but you should already be doing this by default (if you drink good quality coffee)

3. Pay attention to altitude and soil

Coffee cultivated at high elevations has a tendency to be more acidic than other coffees. In a similar vein, volcanic soil is known to contribute to acidity ( 7, for example). While this may seem like an unusual subject to merely “Google,” it is rather simple to determine whether or not you are purchasing your beans from a reputable source. Any reputable coffee supplier worth their salt is well-versed in the altitude and soil conditions in which their specific beans were cultivated. If the bag does not specify, simply inquire.

4. Try different coffee growing regions

While each coffee plantation has its own own flavor profile, there are certain basic traits that may be found in coffees from different regions of the world. Kenya, for example, is known for producing coffee beans that are fruitier and more acidic. On the other hand, coffees from Brazil and Sumatra tend to have a milder flavor and have less acidity. Read on to find out more about acidity, as well as a variety of other coffee characteristics from diverse areas, in our article: Is it possible that you’re murdering your coffee beans?

5. Roast Matters!

However, while each coffee plantation has its own own flavor profile, there are certain basic traits that can be found in coffees from different regions of the world. As an example, coffee beans from Kenya are frequently more acidic and fruity. On the other hand, coffees from Brazil and Sumatra tend to have a milder flavor and less acidity. Read on to find out more about acidity, as well as a variety of other coffee characteristics from across the world. Is it possible that you’re murdering your beans?

7. Add milk

While each coffee plantation has its own own flavor profile, there are certain common qualities that may be found in any coffee location. Kenya, for example, is known for producing coffee beans that are fruitier and more acidic in flavor.

In contrast, coffees from Brazil and Sumatra tend to be mild in acidity. Read on to find out more about acidity, as well as a variety of other coffee characteristics from different areas, in our article: Are you putting your coffee beans to death? It’s likely that you are.

8. Use eggshells

Are you looking for something to take the edge off of a hot cup of coffee? Look no further. Consider brewing using eggshells as a starting point. Due to the fact that eggshells are alkaline, they can assist in neutralizing the natural acidity of coffee, therefore balancing the beverage and even eliminating any harsh or over-extracted tastes in the process.

9. Add salt

You’ve probably heard this one before, and it’s a good one because it works: before brewing, sprinkle a pinch of salt on your coffee grinds. This works independent of the brewing technique used and may make a significant impact in decreasing the acidity of your coffee while also bringing out the sweetness of your coffee. Just make sure you use the proper amount of sugar. You don’t want to go overboard with this (9). For every 6 tablespoons of ground coffee, I’ve started using a quarter teaspoon of kosher salt,” says the author.

Salt, rather than sugar, has been shown to be more effective at neutralizing bitterness according to study.” Do you have a Chemex?

10. Brew it cold

Some of you may have heard this one before, and it is effective: before brewing your coffee grinds, sprinkle a pinch of salt on top of them. If you use this technique regardless of the brewing method, you can notice an immediate improvement in your coffee’s sweetness as well as its acidity. Be careful to use the proper amount of the correct ingredients. Not wanting to overdo things is a good thing (9). For every 6 tablespoons of ground coffee, I’ve started using a quarter teaspoon of kosher salt,” says the cook.

“Salt, rather than sugar, has been shown to be more effective at neutralizing bitterness.” A Chemex is being used.


You’ve probably heard this one before, and it’s a good one because it works: before brewing, sprinkle a pinch of salt into your coffee grinds. This works independently of the brewing technique used and may make a significant impact in decreasing acidity and even bringing out the sweetness of your coffee. Just make sure you use the proper amount of salt. It’s important not to overdo it (9). Every 6 tablespoons of coffee grinds gets a quarter teaspoon of kosher salt, which I find to be a good ratio.” That isn’t nearly enough to satisfy your taste buds, but it will suffice.

Try adding a sprinkle of salt to your next brew to help lessen acidity.


A variety of things influence the pH level of coffee, which is typically just around 5 – approximately as acidic as a banana. Dark-roasted coffee, in general, has the least amount of acidity. All of the individual brands discussed in this article have either been roasted or treated in order to lessen acidity. By just adding milk to your coffee, you may reduce the acidity of the beverage.

The calcium in milk helps to neutralize some of the acids found in coffee, and many people enjoy the way it helps to smooth out the flavor of a cup of joe. Dark-roasted coffee, which is often lower in acidity to begin with, benefits from the addition of milk particularly well. References

  1. Coffee’s aroma and flavor are derived from its chemical composition. Tuesday, October 2, 2015. Thom, E., retrieved on May 23, 2019, from the website (2007). On the effect of high-concentration chlorogenic acid-enriched coffee on glucose absorption in healthy volunteers and the effect of this coffee on body mass when consumed over a lengthy period of time by overweight and obese individuals. Coffee Lab International provided this information on May 23, 2019. (n.d.). Raman, R. (2018). 11 Foods that Cause Heartburn. Retrieved on May 23, 2019 from Raman, R. (2018). obtained on the 23rd of May, 2019 from How to Prevent Coffee Heartburn in 3 Easy Steps. (n.d.). Retrieved from Pehl, C., Pfeiffer, A., Wendl, B., and Kaess, H. Pehl, C., Pfeiffer, A., Wendl, B., Kaess, H. (2003, November 14). Alimentary PharmacologyTherapeutics – Wiley Online Library – The impact of decaffeination of coffee on gastroesophageal reflux in patients with reflux disease – Pehl – 1997 – Alimentary PharmacologyTherapeutics – Wiley Online Library. This information was retrieved from Coffee Acidity and Processing. (n.d.). Adapted from The Positive and Negative Effects of Milk in Your Coffee / Espresso – The Good and the Bad. (On the 17th of October, 2018). Brown provided the information. (2015). (2015, December 4) Part 1 of Alton Brown’s Coffee Owners Manual by Alton Brown. This information was obtained from Glamour. (7th of December, 2017). Are cold-brewed coffees more beneficial to your health than hot-brewed coffees? This information was obtained from

What is Acidity in Coffee?

Acidity is a phrase that is frequently used to characterize coffee, and it is typically used in a favorable way. But what exactly does the term “acidity” in coffee allude to? Acidity is a term used to describe a variety of tastes that may be detected in coffee and which can be traced back to acids present in the coffee beans themselves. The Acidity of a Coffee is altered throughout the roasting process. Perhaps a refresher course in high school chemistry is in order before diving into the exact acids contained in espresso.

  • It is the H+ ions that are released by an acid that cause the tongue neurons to become active, which in turn transmit signals to the brain that we identify with distinct tastes.
  • The quantities of certain acids in green beans alter as a result of the chemical reactions that occur throughout the roasting process.
  • For the most part, when it comes to coffee, the roasting process is designed to bring out the best blend of naturally occurring acids present in a given bean, since these are the components that give the coffee its distinct qualities.
  • We’ll concentrate on the acids that survive the roasting process in this study since they are the ones that have the greatest impact on the final flavor of a cup of coffee.
  • Citric acid can be discovered in arabica beans that have been cultivated at higher altitudes.
  • Phosphoric acid has a sweeter flavor than the majority of acids.
  • When it comes to malic acid, it’s occasionally connected with hints of stone fruit, such as peaches or plums, but it’s more frequent to taste apple or pear in a cup of coffee that contains the acidity.

When compared to other acids, they deteriorate more quickly during the roasting process, which is why light roasts are more frequently described as “bright” and “acidic” than dark roasts.

Higher concentrations of acetic acid, on the other hand, are unpleasant.

Tartaric acid, in a similar vein, has a sour taste when present in large doses.

Quinic acid is formed as a byproduct of the breakdown of other acids.

Despite the fact that it provides coffee a clean finish, quinic acid is the primary acid that causes stomachs to become sour.

As long as you can identify the acids in coffee that you want, you’ll be able to seek for coffees that have been cultivated or roasted in a method that is likely to create the acids that you enjoy.

Perhaps there was a valid reason to pay attention in chemistry class during the eighth period after all.

Is Coffee Acidic?

In a nutshell, sure. Coffee has a high acidity. However, it is not acidic in the sense that you might expect it to be. Coffee, like the majority of the items we like drinking, is inherently acidic. Acids provide flavor by contributing protons to taste receptors on the tongue, which is a literal translation. As a result, other commonly consumed beverages such as beer, soda, fruit juice, and wine are inherently acidic in nature (and are all more acidic than coffee, in fact). Continue reading to learn more about the pH of coffee.

Defining the Acidity of Coffee

Coffee’s acidity is not measured in terms of a lower pH when people speak of it as such (in chemistry, a measure of the actual level of acidity). Specifically, they’re referring to taste chemicals in general. In the case of citric, malic, and tartaric acids, the presence of these acids in the bean is related with the tastes of citrus, apple, and wine, for example. These tastes are more typically found in single-origin, light-roast coffees, and they contribute to the overall pleasurable experience of drinking a cup of coffee.

Why Coffee Makes You Feel Sick

The acid content of coffee has little to do with stomach discomfort, nausea, and diarrhea. For those who believe it is the acid in coffee that causes them to feel nauseous, here is a test: unless you are similarly disturbed by juice, beer, wine, or soda, acidity is not the issue. Instead, the most likely perpetrators are as follows:

Bean Remnants

In your coffee, this represents the amount of particle matter (leftover bean solids) present. In order to keep it to a minimum:

  • Make use of a filtered brew technique that uses a paper filter (which is considerably superior than wire mesh filters)
  • You should avoid using a French press since there is no filter in place and you are more likely to consume the grounds. If possible, stay away from dark roasts, as dark roast coffee beans have been roasted for a longer period of time and, as a result, are more delicate and quicker to break up when ground. A significant change in pH exists between dark and light roast coffees
  • Nonetheless, this difference is minimal.


As previously said, the greater the amount of bean material in the brew, the greater the amount of caffeine that will be extracted in the stomach. Coffee normally causes the body to create more gastric juice, which is good for digestion. Once again, the brew technique may make a significant difference: Americanos and espressos have far less caffeine than drip coffee.


It is true that adding milk and its proteins to coffee can help to ease the entire coffee drinking experience, but this is only true on the tongue. Dairy proteins have been shown to boost the formation of gastric fluids in the stomach. This can, for many people, be a recipe for pain when combined with other acids in the stomach.

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Low Acidity Coffees

If you’re looking for low acidity coffee, look for beans from Brazil, El Salvador, Indonesia, Hawaii, and the Caribbean, among other places. Cold brew is also said to be somewhat less acidic than hot coffee. And when it comes to avoiding stomach troubles, pay attention to how you’re preparing your coffee, since coffee is, when compared to most other beverages, a quite harmless habit.

We aim to make it easier for you to create great coffee at home. Our suggestions are always our own, and we never get anything for them. If you discover something you like and purchase it through one of our affiliate links, we may get a compensation (thank you for your support!).

Coffee Tastes Sour? Here Why, And How To Fix It

No morning routine is complete without a cup of coffee that is bitter. I mean, it’s disgusting. Every flavor in the cup is warped when your coffee has soured, which is not what you want while attempting to be re-energized before the day begins. However, nasty coffee isn’t something you have to accept as a part of life. You can correct the situation—in fact, it’s rather simple. We’ll show you how to do it.

First, Here’s Why Your Coffee Tastes Sour

There are two main causes of sour coffee: (1) bad beans, and (2) poor brewing technique. If the beans are not properly roasted, they will have a grassy and acidic flavor. It’s possible that they’ve become old and stale, in which case they’ll have a really harsh lemony flavor. However, the odds are that your beans are fine—which means you just need to make a few little adjustments to the way you prepare your coffee. Sour coffee is often produced by under-extraction of the beans. Essentially, the beans were not steeped for long enough.

If you’re interested in learning more about why this happens and the steps of extraction (the acids come first), check out this blog post.

  • Your beans have been ground too finely for my taste. The extraction of fine grounds is rapid, while the extraction of big grounds is slower since the water takes more time to reach the core of each particle (you know, science). An excessively coarse grind size might simply indicate that each particle is not receiving the time it requires for a balanced extraction.
  • Your brewing time was insufficient. Long enough in the brewing process to bring out the qualities that will quiet down the acids and strike a sweet spot in terms of flavor is ideal. If you’re using a french press, you could have plunged the filter in too soon. If you’re using a pour over cone, it’s possible that you spilled your water too rapidly, causing it to drain too quickly.
  • The temperature of your water is on the cold side. 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit is the optimal temperature for making coffee, according to scientific evidence. If it falls below that level, it will not be able to extract the beneficial compounds from the coffee as rapidly as it needs to, which might result in under-extraction.
  • The amount of water you used was insufficient. The ratio of coffee to water is really important, and if you don’t give each grind the appropriate quantity of water to extract a balanced brew, you’ll inevitably wind up with under-extracted coffee.

It’s important to note that if you’re used to drinking dark roast coffee from the grocery store, you’ll likely discover that most “specialty coffee” beans have a more acidic flavor than you’re used to. That’s intentional; leaving some of the acidity and zing helps to bring out the best in the other tastes. We recommend giving your taste senses some time to acclimatize before continuing. The increased acidity may take a few cups for your tongue to understand that the extra acidity is really beneficial in that it helps bring out flavors that are not present in super-dark beans.

4 Barista-Approved Ways To Fix Sour Coffee

Considering that every bag is unique (it’s not mass-produced in a factory, after all), it’s totally normal that you may need to make a tiny tweak or two when switching beans to get the flavor back on track. One coffee may taste fantastic, but when you switch to a different bean and follow the same procedures, the coffee may taste sour. No need to be concerned; it is simply how fresh food operates! Remember that sour coffee is under-extracted coffee, and the idea is to extract as much as possible from it.

  • Make your beans even more finely ground (intermediate). The smaller the grounds, the shorter time it will take to extract a balanced taste, thus even if you don’t adjust anything else, this will make a difference. When using pour over techniques, smaller grinds also slow down the draining of water, which results in a longer brew time.
  • Increase the amount of time spent brewing (easy). There are several approaches you might use to do this. If you’re using an immersion brewer, like as a french press, you just need to wait an additional 20 seconds before inserting the filter. Pouring water gently into a pour over coffee maker is a simple way to make the water drain more slowly, or you may grind your beans finer to make the water drain more slowly.
  • Check the temperature of your water (easy). Keep in mind that the ideal temperature range is 195 to 205 degrees. If you live at a high elevation where water boils at roughly 195 degrees Fahrenheit, you’ll want to utilize it as soon as it comes to a boil to avoid it cooling down.
  • Water temperature should be checked (easy). Keep in mind that the ideal temperature range is 195 to 205 degrees F. In high-elevation areas where water boils around 195 degrees Fahrenheit, you’ll want to utilize it immediately after it comes to a boil in order to avoid it cooling.

Please keep in mind that you should only test one of these fixes at a time, and that your modifications should be minor. If you make too many changes, you may find yourself swinging too far in the opposite direction: over-extraction. Yikes. Sometimes it takes two or three tweaks to fully get back into that sweet spot of equilibrium. However, the more you become accustomed to tasting your coffee and making modifications, the less time it will take you.

How To TasteGoodAcidity

Traditionally, specialty coffee has been described as slightly acidic. but in a delightful, bright way. There will be no old lemony bite. There will be no chemical-like craziness. There’s nothing here but a fresh, clean, sharp, and well-balanced tang.

It also has the added benefit of bringing out the other flavors as well, boosting the whole flavor experience with a little zest and pizzazz. Here are a few examples of what excellent acidity might taste like in terms of flavor notes:

  • Fruits that are sweet and vibrant, such as strawberries
  • Light and crisp, such as pineapple
  • Ripe and soft, such as peaches

No, seriously, you can have a sample of this coffee right here.

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The majority of people who have strong feelings about coffee also have strong feelings about acidity. Some of us coffee drinkers appreciate the way it tastes, while others do not; some of us are concerned that it is making us feel unwell, while others are not concerned. Learn about the various ways that acidity may affect our favorite beverage by reading the following article. The pH scale is the most often used general measure of acidity. On the pH scale, seven represents neutrality, anything greater than seven indicates basicity (i.e., not acidic), and anything lower than seven indicates acidity (acidity).

  • According to the standard scale, coffee is often ranked at or around five, indicating that it is acidic on a global scale.
  • Coffee is exactly in the middle of the list, right next to bananas, which is hardly a food we often think of as an acid bomb.
  • According to a 2018 research, however, that selling pitch may be, if not completely inaccurate, then at the very least misconstrued.
  • But if you’ve had both cold brew coffee and hot brewed coffee, you’re probably aware that hot coffee is more acidic.
  • There is another approach to test acidity that is more accurate since it measures how much acid we can really taste.
  • The Titratable Acidity of hot brew coffee was found to be greater than that of cold brew coffee, which makes sense given the brighter, more complex acidity that we experience in hot coffee and the brighter, more complex acidity that we detect in cold coffee.
  • The first study, published in the journal Gastroenterology in 1980, did establish a relationship between coffee and increased symptoms of acid reflux, but it identified that risk in coffees with PH values ranging from four and a half to seven on the acid reflux severity scale.
  • That report also includes references to several other recent research that have failed to uncover a relationship between coffee and gastrointestinal discomfort, as well as studies that have demonstrated the numerous other health advantages of coffee.

For coffee drinkers, our greatest advise comes from Paracelsus, a 16th-century Swiss scientist who famously remarked, “All things are poison, and nothing is without poison; the dose alone makes a thing not a poison.” If you’re certain that coffee is causing your stomach problems, the best course of action is to consume just a little less of it.

  • Even if you believe that cold brew is superior to hot coffee, a 32 oz huge gulp of cold brew will have a greater influence on you in every manner than a 12 oz cup of hot coffee.
  • Many people’s preferences for cooler brews and darker roasts are based on a desire to avoid what they perceive to be sourness in their beverages.
  • While there are certain coffees that can have out-of-balance sour tastes due to a flaw or a roasting decision, a nice, in-balance tartness can make drinking coffee extremely enjoyable.
  • If you really want to jump into the deep end, Kenyan coffees are most commonly associated with high acidity and are hence a favorite among coffee professionals.
  • Next time you’re relaxing with a cup of tea, keep an eye out for that little hint of tartness and how it complements the other tastes in your cup.
  • Chrogenic acid is another type of acid present in coffee that gets us to our next brewing (or, rather, post-brewing) suggestion.
  • These two factors can result in bitter tastes in coffee, which humans do not enjoy, and this breakdown occurs more frequently at higher temperatures.

While hot coffee is certainly enjoyable, allowing it to cool naturally (or simply brewing a modest enough amount to finish sooner rather than later) would likely result in a better tasting cup of joe.

Coffee Acidity: The Science and the Experience

The words sour, tangy, bitter, and sharp may come to mind when you hear the word “acidity.” However, in the coffee industry, the phrase is used in at least three different ways: acidity is defined by coffee fans and connoisseurs as the dry, bright, and sparkling experience that distinguishes a high-quality, high-grown coffee from a humdrum, lower-grown coffee, according to the experts. To be sure, this is a snobbish way of looking at the situation, yet it is true that many highly appreciated coffees are produced at high altitudes and are distinguished by their brilliant, subtle flavors and aromas.

  1. Lemon juice has a pH of around 2.0, while milk has a pH of approximately 6.5.
  2. On the scale below, a 5 represents “black coffee,” which indicates that this is an average and certainly not universal preference.
  3. Many coffee consumers are beginning to hunt for “low-acid” coffees in recent years, generally as a result of a doctor’s suggestion or simply because they are experiencing a terrible sensation in their stomach after drinking their daily cup of java (or ten).
  4. The pH level of a coffee does not necessarily correspond to how a person feels about that particular coffee.

Choosing lower grown coffee with naturally low acidity that has been picked and processed with care, then bringing it to a moderate roast that develops the sugars without burning them, according to Kenneth Davids of Coffee Review, is far more effective in producing a fine flavorful low-acid cup.

Dark roasting decreases acidity, but it may also disguise the characteristics of the beans’ origins, therefore it’s vital to evaluate the characteristics of the green beans’ origins before roasting them to death.

However, more subtle characteristics like as citrus, berry, or herbal aromas are likely to be overshadowed by the characteristics of the roast itself.

So, if you’re looking for a low-acid choice, experiment with a few different types and follow your instincts.

There is little doubt that cold-brewing pulls far less of everything from coffees, including acids, therefore it is a viable choice.

You may also purchase your own cold brew system; we recommend theFiltron for this purpose.

Higher Grounds’ lowest-acid coffees are medium-dark roastPeruvian Pangoa, dark roastSumatran (which fits both the lower-acid-by-origin and the dark roast bill), dark roastMexican Yachil, and medium-dark roastBolivianCaranavi.

Higher Grounds’ highest-acid coffees are medium-dark roastPeruvian Pangoa, medium-dark roastPeruvian Pangoa, medium Interested in learning more? Check read our other piece regarding coffee acidity here.

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