There’s nothing better than drinking that first cup of morning coffee with a clean conscience. One way to do this is to buy organic coffee, which is environmentally-friendly and may be healthier for you and your family.
Coffee is often grown in environmentally sensitive places, so organic growing techniques can help maintain healthy local populations of wildlife while also maintaining a healthy environment.
Keeping that in mind, we wrote some reviews of different kinds of organics you might run across while looking to purchase coffee. We included a guide to give you a better idea of what to look for.
|Browny Coffee Certified Organic SUMATRA Coffee|
|Bulletproof The Original Ground Coffee |
(Top Ground Coffee Pick)
|Café Don Pablo Decaf Colombian Gourmet Coffee|
(Top Decaf Pick)
|Kicking Horse Coffee "Kick Ass"||Dark||4.3/5|
|Death Wish Ground Coffee "The World's Strongest Coffee"||Dark||4.2/5|
Browny Coffee paired the earthy qualities of wet hulling with a well-done long roasting to produce an amazingly complete coffee. We didn’t just make it our Top Pick for that, though. Usually, you’d expect to pay a lot more for something this well done. Not in this case. It’s an amazing coffee available at a pretty reasonable price point. Most coffee fiends can drink this every day without putting a dent in their wallets.
Browny Coffee does use a slightly different roasting process, which results in a slightly different flavor. If you’re looking for something that is pure Sumatra, you might just like this coffee instead of raving about how great it is.
Bulletproof Premium Medium Roast isn’t just a coffee, although it is our choice for best organic ground coffee. Paired with the ghee from grass-fed cows and octane oil, it’s more of a coffee system. The only thing you do is make the coffee according to your preferred method and enjoy yourself.
You’re also going to pay for it. It’s one of the pricier cups of coffee available. It isn’t enough that it’s going to scare us away. In fact, as we progress, we’ll meet some coffees priced high enough to make this look like a bargain–basement deal.
It’s no mystery why we made Café Don Pablo’s Colombian Gourmet Coffee our top decaf pick. It’s got excellent flavor and consistently delivers it. That’s a great achievement for a decaf coffee. It’s also full of body.
Unlike a lot of other decafs, this one was processed with water, not chemical solvents. Also unlike a lot of decafs, it’s not the most expensive coffee on the shelf. It’s a pretty good value.
It is decaf, so if you’re looking for a regular coffee, this one isn’t that. The bags are also not vacuum sealed, so even though these are whole beans and not grounds, you’ll want to transfer them to a storage container as soon as you get it to maintain maximum freshness.
Growth in the coffee market has created a lot of space for creative naming. It’s great that Kicking Horse Coffee thought to give the name Kick Ass to one. This is a great coffee, and could easily compete for one of our top spots. It’s got a great, rich flavor accentuated with just a tinge of smokiness.
We also think it would make an outstanding cold brew. The problem is that it comes pre-ground for drip machines. That means more of the grounds would leak through a filter cylinder and into your coffee in most systems. Because it can’t live up to its full potential, we couldn’t give it either of our top spots for regular coffee.
Death Wish isn’t exactly branded to be an everyday coffee. If it were, the company might not suggest that you drink it at your peril. But we get that it goes with the marketing gimmick that it’s the world’s strongest coffee. We kind of suspect that’s not the case, but it doesn’t matter because this is one good cup of coffee.
It’s a dark roast, so it doesn’t quite have the caffeine of a light or medium roast. What it does have is a rich, robust flavor that doesn’t have the bitterness of less masterful roasting.
It’s expensive, probably one of the most expensive coffees available, so you’re paying for that excellence. Also, we suspect, for a bit of the branding.
Equal Exchange makes a lot of different coffees, from light roasts to dark. We split the difference between the two and looked at its Breakfast Blend, a medium roast.
Its two best traits are that it’s 100 percent Arabica beans, which means it’s a good low-acid option for people who have stomach issues, and its price. With Equal Exchange, you can get some pretty good coffee at a pretty good price. We’re talking potentially half what you’d pay for Death Wish, the highest reasonably priced coffee we evaluated.
There are some trade–offs. While it’s a good-tasting coffee, it’s not a flavor that will make you sit up and yell. The other thing is that while you can get whole beans from Equal Exchange, this one is pre-ground. Pre-ground beans lose their freshness much more quickly than whole beans. That might not be a big deal if you grind your own beans at the store, but there’s no guarantee when they are packaged ground.
Amazon does well with just about everything it touches, and its K-cups have a pretty good reputation, so we were intrigued by how it’d do with ground coffee.
Like the Equal Exchange, the Peru Ground Coffee is 100 percent Arabica beans, so it’s low acid and suitable for people with mild stomach issues. Like that one, it’s also a flavorful coffee that here has to compete against some stellar opposition. It’s not down here at seventh because it’s bad. It’s here because the first six are just that good.
One drawback is that because it’s an Amazon product, it has a limited distribution network. Equal Exchange, by contrast, you can buy at lots of places beyond just through Prime. Depending on how long it’d take Prime to get the AmazonFresh coffee to you, you‘d better have faith that you won’t run out for up to two days.
If we have something positive to say about a product, we like to start our reviews saying it. In this case, we just simply can’t avoid the issue of how much The Organic Coffee Co.’s Ground French Roast is. We’re at a loss to explain why it costs five times more than some coffees we evaluated, and double the price of the second–highest-priced one.
Sometimes it’s a matter of quality: something is just so excellent compared to its competition that it warrants that kind of price. Sometimes something is made of rare, difficult-to-find materials and has to get priced because of that. Here, we’re just not sure.
It’s a good, flavorful coffee. We like it and would be tempted to drink it more frequently. But, ye gods, the price. Plus, it also just doesn’t have the aroma that you want to wake up smelling.
Jeremiah’s Pick Mocha Java Ground Coffee is a blend of Arabica and Java beans intended to give you a coffee that is both a little bit spice and a little bit chocolate. The question is whether it succeeds.
We found that it has a bit of an identity crisis, frankly. It’s not sure if it wants to be robust and complex or fruity and subtle. It just splits the difference and instead is a bit weak. If you’re looking for something that won’t punch you where it counts, this is your coffee. If you’re looking for something that will, this isn’t it.
What we did like is that it does have a nice spicy quality. Coffee doesn’t always get that right. Often, it just takes a casual swing at that before moving on to trying to knock you over and steal your wallet. This does a good job getting that right.
If Tiny Footprint’s first carbon-negative coffee is going to save the planet, it’ll do it by making non-coffee drinkers of us all. We do like the commitment to making a sustainable coffee. Coffee as a product has a pretty significant carbon footprint, so it’s nice to see someone make an effort to not only make a product that doesn’t make it worse, but tries to turn things around.
We hope the company goes back to the drawing board. Not only is this coffee extraordinarily expensive, but it’s also weak and watery.
We put together this guide to help you figure out which organic coffee combines great flavor and social consciousness to give you coffee that will perk you up without feeling like a drag to drink.
In food circles, organic has been something of a buzzword since the 1990s. It was then that the market started to get big for organic foods like coffee.
Organic is mostly a name for environmentally-friendly coffee. It’s grown naturally, without chemicals like pesticides and antibiotics, benefitting the land it’s grown on and potentially your health.
Coffee is mostly grown outside of the US, so the organic label can help you feel confident in the growing practices. If you want to buy organic coffee, make sure it’s certified organic.
The main label to look for is the USDA Organic certification, which assures you that the coffee was grown without pesticides, genetic engineering, or synthetic fertilizers.
Keep in mind that small producers and operations like community-supported agriculture farms may not be certified but can still grow based on organic principles.
Other certifications to look for include Bird Friendly and Rainforest Alliance. The Smithsonian Institute’s Bird Friendly certification ensures the protection of bird habitats, and the Rainforest Alliance works to protect the environment and the farmers. You can also look for shade-grown on your coffee bags. This allows for the preservation of rainforest canopies, though there isn’t a certification for it.
A basic question is always going to be your desired roast. Lighter roasts tend to lend themselves to fruitier, lighter flavors, while dark roasts are heated longer, producing a flavor that is more robust and sometimes bitter.
Espressos and lattes are usually made with dark roasts. Coffees flavored with natural spice tend to lend themselves to a medium roast. Light roasts have the fruitiest tastes, but they also have the most caffeine. You can read more about roast types here.
One question you’ll certainly want answered is whether you want ground coffee or whole beans. The answer to that depends on how quickly you use coffee, how you store it after purchase, and – most importantly – how you brew it.
The big difference is that ground coffee loses its potency faster. Whole beans are also more versatile. If you buy those, you can grind them to the consistency of however you’re brewing coffee. If you’re making cold brew, you can grind them coarse. If you like espresso or pressed coffee, you can grind them fine.
Pre-ground coffee does have an advantage if you’re just scooping it out of the bag for a drip coffee maker, which uses a medium grind. You can just scoop grounds into the filter and get brewing.
Price is always a consideration when buying anything. When it comes to organic coffee, expect to pay more for the care used in raising the plants. But you don’t need to toss money away. With a little extra research, you can get a great deal. Or you can gird yourself to pay extra for something really special.
Browny Coffee’s Dark Roast Sumatra beans combined for a dark coffee with earthy notes that was just about perfect. It was our top pick for whole bean coffee and our top pick overall. Bulletproof’s Premium Medium Roast was our top choice for best organic ground coffee. It’s just a little too pricey to get our top slot. Café Don Pablo’s Decaf Colombian was our top pick for decaffeinated coffee. It has good, consistent flavor and is full of body. The bags are not vacuum sealed, so you’ll want to transfer it to an airtight, darkened container to maintain freshness.
We hope that these reviews and buying tips help you find coffee that’s delicious and organic. You can protect the environment and your health without sacrificing your tastebuds. An amazing, sustainable cup of coffee awaits!
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