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If you fancy yourself a coffee aficionado, you may find that you’re consistently on a quest for the next preferred coffee. As if the caffeine addiction weren’t enough, the quest can become an obsession. The options are vast, especially if you’re unsure where to start. You may want to broaden your palate horizon, be more adventurous or find the next staple to have a permanent spot in your kitchen.
Coffee taste may well be one of the most subjective experiences that exists. While it’s recommended to grind your beans for the freshest taste, we also understand the need for the convenience of already ground beans for those who don’t want to deal with a grinder. With so many ways to experiment, like combinations of your favorite coffees, brewing methods, and the coarseness of the grind, the task of choosing a new coffee can be daunting.
We’ve combed through the options for you while keeping in mind quality, price, roast, and company ethics. Here we have put together a “Buyer’s Guide” with the reviews of our top picks to help you navigate to a starting point of selecting the next perfect cup of coffee.
|Kicking Horse Coffee ‘Smart Ass'|
|Death Wish Coffee (Ground)|
(Best Ground Coffee on Amazon)
|Cafe Don Pablo Decaf Colombian Coffee|
(Our Favorite Decaf Pick)
|Starbucks Breakfast Blend Ground Coffee||Medium||4.50/5|
|AmazonFresh Colombia Ground Coffee||Medium||4.30/5|
Kicking Horse’s Smart Ass is our top pick as one of the best whole bean coffee variants on Amazon. With a sweet aroma and a robust flavor, it’s more than coffee; it’s an experience.
This blend, although medium roast, comes through on the darker side of taste, with many noting a bitter aftertaste. This potent coffee is not for the devotee steering clear of a power punch to the taste buds.
It’s conveniently offered in two sizes: 10 ounces and 2.2 pounds. Refunding is not an option, so if you’re willing to spend the money and enjoy a strong hit of flavor, you may not be disappointed. If it turns out you enjoy this pick, you can save a little money by subscribing.
If you want a full-bodied flavor from an environmentally conscious brand, this is a great option. As a bonus, it has a fun name to say, too!
Death Wish is an intense, dark roast blend noted as having a higher–than–average caffeine content, hence the name. As one of the top ground coffee blends on Amazon, it has a rich color and vigorous aroma while offering smooth contact with no bitter edge.
This option is not for the faint of heart. If you have a high caffeine tolerance, you may not get that rush to help you get those chores done. On the flip side, if you’re caffeine–sensitive, don’t be surprised if you start hearing colors and seeing noises, as you’ve just been on the Death Wish adventure. If you’re looking for that caffeine rush, this may be for you, but as a caffeine-sensitive consumer, you may want to avoid this kick.
Be prepared to take a hit to your wallet. Should you choose to give this one a try, it’s the priciest choice on our list. The good news is, it’s an indulgence you can try risk-free. If you don’t like it, your wallet will be refilled.
While Cafe Don Pablo Decaf is our favorite decaf choice, the lack of caffeine keeps it out of the top two spots. It may lack the richness of a fully caffeinated version, but the hint of chocolate and a darker flavor support this top decaf pick.
Though it’s advertised as using the Swiss Water Process, those crossing over from the caffeinated side say that there is a lack of depth in flavor. While it’s tried to retain the same great flavor as a caffeinated version through a chemical-free process, this is a medium roast that delivers a lighter flavor.
Decaf coffee has come a long way; however, if you’re searching for that robust flavor, this pick may not deliver. Even with a smooth finish, the light flavor may require you to constantly play with grinding coarseness in an attempt to achieve your perfect balance.
This brand roasts its beans to order for freshness, and most report a nice balance as a decaf coffee. With a middle-of-the–road price, this is great if you’re looking for less caffeine.
Since it’s one of the most well-known coffee brands, there is a good chance you like Starbucks coffee. If you like to start your morning with a not-so-intense brew, the Breakfast Blend offers up a gentle, smooth flavor to ease you into the day.
If you have an adventurous preference in coffee taste and like the control that comes with grinding your beans, this one may seem bland to you. This is a pick to appeal to the masses, so if you are truly a coffee “snob,” it may not be for you.
With an affordable price, it’s noted as being the everyday coffee choice for many purchasers. It works well in the refillable K-cup and seems appealing to a wide range of palates. If you’re seeking that staple coffee, this is a good choice that also comes with a subscribe-and–save option.
As a very affordable medium roast option, the AmazonFresh Colombia Ground brand ranks as a good choice for the budget-conscious. While not considered a premium coffee, this one is reported as having a pleasant aroma with a smooth finish.
Recognized for having a mild, gentle flavor, it may be too mild for the medium roast lover. For those desiring a more robust flavor, this lighter roast may not do the trick for you. Overall, it’s a decent cup of joe at a bargain price.
If you’re on the fence about giving this one a go, while it’s affordable, Amazon also offers a money–back guarantee. If you find it a nice choice, it’s made even more budget-friendly with subscribe–and–save.
Coming in on the list from a company that’s been around for over 150 years is the least expensive option. The Eight O’Clock Ground Coffee light to medium roast offers a smooth and mild taste for the coffee lover who prefers to avoid the robust nature of a darker roast.
As a daily choice for many, it may not live up to the expectations for the self-proclaimed I-only-drink-black-coffee enthusiast. The noted bitterness can turn off those who don’t add anything extra to their coffee.
The good news is, even though there is no money-back guarantee, you can give this a try at a very affordable price that won’t break the bank. To top this off, this brand is Kosher certified.
As a family-owned and operated business, Koffee Kult has been on the scene since 2010, and it’s making its mark. Locally roasting in Florida, it’s known for the bold flavor of its beans. Though its Dark Roast comes through as more of a medium roast with hints of chocolate and cinnamon, it’s a popular choice among many.
Keep in mind if you’re a newbie easing your way into the dark side, a bitter finish is noted. For the dark roast connoisseur, you may find this a bit too light for your taste.
While organically sourced through many small coffee farmers, this coffee is not USDA organic certified. It’s on the pricier side, but a money-back guarantee is offered.
With a big bite and a smooth undercut, Brooklyn Coffee‘s Italian Dark Roast rounds out the list. If you’re looking to dip your taste buds into the arena of a full-bodied, dark roast, this is a very affordable option.
Though the beans are sourced directly from family farms, they’re not organic or fair trade certified. If these factors are important to you when choosing a quality coffee bean, this one will not fit the bill.
Since it comes in a five-pound bag, you’ll have plenty to play with as you try out grinding options to find just the right balance for your taste. There is no option to return, so once you purchase, it’s all yours. However, if you decide to keep this in your repertoire of coffee choices, there is an option to subscribe–and–save, making it even more budget-friendly.
Here we have a list of some things to consider when choosing your next favorite coffee.
With many options from light to dark and every variation in between, keep in mind that more expensive coffee beans are roasted in small batches, leaving room for variation inconsistency. More economical offerings tend to be roasted in bulk, keeping a more even consistency aligning with that brand expectation.
Darker roasts bring more emphasis to the bold bite, while a light roast has a gentle touch to the palate. Coffee taste is subjective and experimentation is essential to finding the perfect taste for you.
Coffee doesn’t have to cost a fortune. We’ve offered options ranging from expensive to economical, including those offering money-back guarantees and subscribe-and-save preference.
Depending on the quantity being offered, buying your new favorite in bulk will offer you the biggest value. Even for the more expensive, gourmet versions, there are still options for saving a few dollars.
Environmentally friendly practices are becoming more and more important to consumers. If you’re looking for a brand that is organic and/or fair trade certified, there are many out there, so it may be worth a look into the business practices of the brand you want to buy.
Keep in mind that the cost of environmentally friendly and organically sourced coffee practices is passed along to the consumer. You may pay a little more, but your mind can rest easy knowing the brand ethics are congruent with yours.
If you’ve come this far, perhaps you’ve chosen your next fun coffee adventure from the list provided. If you’re still undecided, here’s a short recap.
Our top whole bean choice is Kicking Horse Coffee Whole Bean “Smart Ass” Medium Roast. As a solid choice, it’s available in a small 10-ounce size to give it a go without killing your wallet.
Our top ground choice is Death Wish Coffee (Ground). With a delicious aroma and money-back guarantee, this pricier pick can be tried risk-free.
Our top decaf choice is Cafe Don Pablo Decaf Colombian Whole Bean Coffee. As an organically certified, affordable option with a chemical-free decaffeination process, you’ll be able to rest easy knowing it’s environmentally friendly.
Choosing a new coffee can be a fun experience. With an open mind and a brewing method primed to go, you may find you love the experimenting as much as the coffee itself. Ready, set, go….keep on brewing!
Featured image credit: rawpixel, Pexel
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