What is Coffee Powder?
Coffee feels like magic when it comes in powdered form. You sprinkle coffee powder into a mug, add hot water, and voila! You instantly have a steaming cup of coffee. But what is it, and how is this bewitching brew made?
In this article, we answer the question: what is coffee powder?
What Is Coffee Powder?
Coffee powder is just another name for instant coffee solids used to make instant coffee by adding hot water to these solids and stirring. These solids come in crystallized or powdered form and make instant coffee, as the name suggests, instantly.
Other names for coffee powder include powdered coffee, coffee crystals, and soluble coffee.
The coffee powder comes from dried coffee extract, which is made by roasting coffee beans and then grinding, brewing, and removing water from them to form a dissolvable powder. Two types of drying are spray-drying, spraying coffee extract into hot air, and freeze-drying, freezing coffee extract and cutting it up to dry in a vacuum (1).
The FDA cautions coffee lovers about how much coffee powder to drink (2).
. . ..Just one teaspoon of pure powdered caffeine can contain the same amount of caffeine as 28 cups of coffee. . . These are toxic amounts that can have serious health consequences.
Ensure that you always read the nutrition labels of coffee-related products before use.
How To Make Coffee Powder
Coffee powder is available in just about any supermarket or online. Check out some of the best-tasting instant coffees we’ve compiled for you.
For more on instant supermarket coffee and its tastes, check out this YouTube video.
Here’s what you need to know to learn how to make powder coffee so you can use it to make your instant coffee.
- Find some really good coffee beans. If you want to do the whole process yourself, roast raw whole beans on a stovetop, in the oven, in the microwave, or in a home roaster.
- Grind up your chosen roasted coffee beans by hand or electronically.
- Brew the coffee beans with whichever brewing method you have available.
- Dry the resulting coffee in a dehydrator or in the oven at a low heat.
- Leave as is for coffee powder, or brew again for instant coffee.
Already itching to start learning how to make something else similar to this? Check out our article on making espresso powder for more of a baking approach to great coffee flavours.
Coffee powder is the term for instant coffee solids that instantly dissolve in hot water to make instant coffee. Dried coffee extract is made by roasting, grinding, brewing, and dehydrating coffee beans via spray-drying or freeze-drying, forming a coffee powder. You can similarly make your own coffee powder.
No, ground coffee is not the same as coffee powder. The difference between instant coffee and ground coffee is that instant coffee has already been roasted, ground up, brewed, reduced to a concentrate, and then dehydrated. In contrast, ground coffee merely entails what you’re left with after grinding roasted beans to a fine powder to prep for a brewing method like a French Press.
Yes, you can eat the coffee powder. Coffee powder consumed in moderation offers the same nutrients as a standard cup of coffee, albeit in a more concentrated form. The difference is that coffee powder directly promotes quicker absorption of caffeine through your mouth’s lining, so the benefits, and the side effects, are enhanced (3).
It is safe to consume up to 400 mg of caffeine daily in a healthy adult. However, coffee-related products that come in liquid or powdered forms should be checked for their caffeine quantities before consumption, as they may have concentrated dosages that could be harmful (4). Ensure that you are not unintentionally overdosing on your daily caffeine intake limit with other products.
- Bjarnadottir, A. (2019, October 8). Instant Coffee: Good or Bad? Retrieved November 9, 2022, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/instant-coffee-good-or-bad
- FDA. (2018, December 12). Spilling the Beans: How Much Caffeine is Too Much? Retrieved November 9, 2022, from https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/spilling-beans-how-much-caffeine-too-much#:~:text=For%20healthy%20adults%2C%20the%20FDA,it%20(break%20it%20down)
- Brown, M. J. (2019, February 13). Can You Eat Coffee Beans? All You Need to Know. Retrieved November 9, 2022, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/eating-coffee-beans
- Mayo Clinic. (2022, March 19). Caffeine: How much is too much? Retrieved November 8, 2022, from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/caffeine/art-20045678