The Process of Roasting Coffee Beans

Everybody loves a good cup of coffee. Whether it’s for an early morning “pick-me-up” or for a second wind during the day, coffee is a necessity to many. With a coffee subscription, you’ve likely encountered a number of different flavors or roasts, but have you ever wondered how coffee beans are actually prepared?

The most important part of preparing coffee beans is the roasting stage. Roasting is so significant for a good cup of premium coffee because it’s what brings out the flavor in the beans that you come to know when you enjoy your first few sips. All coffee beans start green when they are first harvested. When they’re green, they lack the flavor or unique aroma that can normally be found after roasting. This is why roasting coffee beans is so important.

You don’t want to cut corners when it comes to roasting your coffee beans. When roasted properly, you’ll get the most out of your coffee in terms of both scent and taste. Whether you roast it for too long or you try to cool the beans too quickly, a small misstep can lead to a bitter cup of coffee with ruined flavor. Keeping in mind, however, that it is important to adhere to these steps when roasting coffee beans with a coffee roaster.

Step 1: Place the Beans in the Hopper
You see that giant, funnel-shaped object at the top of the roaster? That’s what’s called the hopper. The hopper is responsible for simply containing the coffee beans as you dump them into the roaster and then displacing them into the roaster for roasting. They can be found in a number of different sizes and shapes. In many shops, they are usually metal with an oval shaped funnel that holds a small jar’s worth of beans. This is an important step that can’t be missed.

Step 2: Roasting the Beans
After you’ve placed your unroasted coffee beans into the hopper, they will immediately drop into the rotating drums of the roaster, which is where the real magic happens. The beans undergo what’s known as an endothermic process, which means that they absorb heat as the temperature of the roaster increases. After the roaster hits a certain temperature (375 degrees Fahrenheit to be exact), the beans begin to give off heat, in which the process then becomes exothermic.

As the bean heats, you’ll notice that they’ll change colors from green to yellow. This is what’s known as the “yellowing,” where the scent of the beans also begins to take place. Think of fresh plants from a nursery. That’s the scent you should be experiencing during the yellowing phase. They will then steam and proceed to crack afterwards, giving way for moisture to leave the coffee as the beans dry up even more.

What happens after the first cracking stage is all up to you. Technically, the coffee is considered finished after this phase. Everything else depends on the type of flavor you want and how much darker you want your coffee to be. Creating beans for a dark roast coffee requires leaving them in the roaster for a longer period of time, where they will experience more cracks. The longer they are left in the roaster, the more sugar leaves the beans giving way to a darker flavor. This is also known as a French Roast, a popular choice amongst those with a coffee subscription.

Once the beans have become French Roast dark, take them out as soon as you can. Otherwise, you’ll be left with a nice cup of hot water with a chalk-like flavor.

Step 3: Cooling
You’ve roasted your coffee beans to your liking, the beans are cracking, and you’re excited to grind them and make yourself that dream cup of coffee you’ve been longing for. Not so fast, a fresh, hot cup of coffee doesn’t necessarily mean brewing with hot beans. If you really want to get the most out of your coffee, letting the beans cool for a certain amount of time will give them the complete flavor and aroma you’ve been searching for when you first started roasting. Letting your beans cool between 4 to 8 hours in a small container that is hidden away from any light is ideal for letting it cool before you finally allow yourself to brew your fresh coffee.

To view our own selection of coffee beans, browse our website, select the “coffee” tab and the coffee subscription selection and you’ll find beans from a vast number of countries roasted in some of the finest roasters assembled. We pride ourselves on excellent customer service, so if you have any questions in regards to our coffee, feel free to fill out the “contact” form on our site, or give us a call at (954)-962-2353. We guarantee you a timely and detailed answer!