Have you noticed a shiny and oily glare on your fresh bag of roasted coffee beans? If so, you might be wondering why your coffee beans appear oily while others don’t. This article will discuss why coffee beans appear oily and how to remove the oil from the coffee beans. Read on!
Why are Coffee Beans Oily?
Coffee beans usually contain natural oils known as “essence” or caffeol that are activated during the roasting process. When the coffee bean is exposed to heat or air, the oil starts to appear on the surface of the bean. Oily beans result from a chemical reaction between oxygen and internals of the beans during the roasting process. When a coffee bean is roasted excessively, the internal shell cracks and produces carbon dioxide gas. The gas immediately reacts with oxygen creating the oil.
This explains why dark roasted coffee beans are full of oils compared to lightly roasted coffee beans. If your coffee beans are oily, it means they naturally contain more oils, were roasted for a long time, or the beans have been sitting for a longer period. Coffee beans excrete more oils over time resulting in an oilier bean since the oils in coffee beans continue to interact with oxygen.
The oil in the coffee beans is in high demand in its pure form since it’s used in things such as cosmetics, fragrance oil, biodiesel, and healthy supplements. The extraction takes place by the use of expensive commercial machinery. However, there are other homemade methods to remove oil from coffee beans.
How to Remove Oil from Coffee Beans
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to remove oil from coffee beans using olive oil.
Put 6 oz of roasted coffee beans or fresh coffee beans into a crock pot. Alternatively, you can use 10 oz of freshly ground coffee beans (medium to coarse grind). Then pour six cups of olive oil (extra virgin) into the coffee beans in the pot and stir once using a wooden spoon. As you stir, ensure that all the coffee beans are evenly coated with olive oil.
Power on your crock pot, cover it, and wait. For roasted coffee beans, use low heat, while for unroasted and ground coffee beans, use the medium to high heat.
Stir the mixture after every hour using a wooden spoon. Check the mixture frequently if you’re using medium to high heat for unroasted or ground coffee to ensure you don’t burn the olive oil. You can turn the high heat down when the coffee beans begin to turn dark in color.
The cooking process will take approximately eight to ten hours depending on the crock pot you’re using. The longer the process, the stronger the mixture. Therefore, you can safely cook the mixture for twelve hours for a strong finished product.
Prepare your mason jar by removing the lid and stretching cheesecloth over the mason jar opening. The cheesecloth should be placed in a way it hangs inwards into the mason jar. Put the jars ring back to hold the cheesecloth into place for easy straining.
When the cooking time is complete, strain the mixture using a handheld strainer. Hold the strainer above the cheesecloth, then use a ladle to scoop the mixture from the pot and gently pour it above the strainer. The coffee beans remain on the strainer as the mixture seeps through the cheesecloth into the mason jar. In this process, the cheesecloth is used to strain any impurities in the mixture. Continue until there isn’t any remaining mixture in your crock pot.
Use a teaspoon to remove the impurities on the cheesecloth and discard them. Evaluate your mixture to see if the cheesecloth has allowed any impurities into the mason jar. If there’re any impurities, you can use another cheesecloth to remove them. Having completed the process, your homemade coffee oil is ready for use and storage. For storage, the oil has a similar shelf life to that of olive oil.
Here are some other methods you can use to remove oil from coffee beans. They include:
- Submerging your coffee beans into some oil-absorbing materials such as salt and corn starch. In this case, salt is preferable since it is granular and easy to remove.
- You can also use a paper towel or tissue paper to remove the oil from your coffee beans. However, this method requires more effort and time
Should You Dry Oily Coffee Beans
You should not dry oily coffee beans since the process will only make the beans oilier. When coffee beans are exposed to air during the drying process, the lipids in them react with oxygen, thus creating more oil that appears on the surface of the coffee bean. Therefore, it is difficult to remove oil from coffee beans using the drying process. However, there are ways to deal with oily coffee beans and prevent them from becoming oilier. They include:
- Transferring the coffee beans into a vacuum container and storing them in a dark place to prevent oxidation.
- Avoid washing oily coffee beans since it will affect the flavor of your coffee when they’re used.
- Using all together a huge amount of oily coffee beans can lead to stale coffee. Therefore, you can try and mix up dry and oily coffee beans to balance out the oil.
Are Oily Coffee Beans Good or Bad?
Oily coffee beans are either good or bad depending on the quality of the coffee beans, the quality of the roasting process, and the storage of the roasted coffee beans. For example, oily coffee beans are an indication of freshly roasted coffee beans. Alternatively, dark roasted coffee beans that lack oil are an indication of staleness. Additionally, some believe that oily coffee beans (dark roasts) will make a good cup of espresso. Light and medium roasted coffee beans shouldn’t appear oily.
When it comes to the appliances used, oily coffee beans can mess up the appliance and reduce its functionality. Therefore, avoid using oily coffee beans in a super-automatic or semi-automatic coffee machine. Additionally, use a burr grinder to grind oily coffee beans.