Nothing beats roasting your coffee beans. You get to experience the freshness of your coffee and the flavor complexities that you cannot find in store-bought coffee beans. Additionally, understanding the roasting process helps you appreciate the art and science that is involved in making a perfect cup of coffee.
Not to mention, home-roasted coffee beans have increased health-related properties. Furthermore, you can choose the type of roast that you prefer – either light roast, medium roast, or dark roast. There are a variety of methods that you can use to roast your coffee beans. They include:
- Roast coffee beans in a pan or grill
- Roast coffee beans in an oven
- Roast coffee beans in a popcorn maker
- Roast coffee beans in a home-built coffee roaster
This guide is going to focus on how you can roast your coffee beans using an oven. Let’s get started.
Understanding the Roasting Process
The step-to-step guide to roasting coffee may vary depending on the roasting method that you choose. However, some things will remain the same despite your method of choice. They include:
- Coffee beans get hot
- Coffee beans get roasted
- Coffee beans get cool
- Coffee beans get delicious
Mostly, your tastes and preferences determine the amount of time you’ll be roasting coffee beans. Here are some other basic things that you need to know when roasting your coffee beans at home.
The widely accepted temperature for roasting coffee beans is between 350 degrees Fahrenheit to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. However, the temperature range will vary depending on the method that you use.
For an even roast of the coffee beans, you’ll need to constantly stir them. This ensures that there is an even distribution of heat.
- Cracking Sound
As you roast your coffee beans, you’ll hear a crackling sound. The sound is a result of the evaporation of water from the coffee beans. Generally, two crackling sounds will happen. These are the first and second crackling sounds. They occur as the temperature rises. The first crackling sound happens after three to five minutes of roasting coffee beans. The sound indicates that your coffee beans are lightly roasted. The lightly roasted coffee beans are ideal for white coffee.
The second crack will happen a few minutes after the first. The second crack indicates that the coffee beans are medium roasted. If you roast your coffee beans for a few more minutes after the second crack, you’ll have unusable and burnt coffee beans.
When you start heating your coffee beans, you’ll notice a grassy smell as they start to turn yellowish. When the coffee beans begin roasting, you’ll notice a true coffee smell, and your beans start to smoke.
- Color Change
The color of the coffee beans during the roasting process determines the length of roasting. Your coffee beans will go through a wide array of colors during the roasting process. While roasting your coffee beans, it’s important to keep in mind that the more you roast them, the fuller their body. Here are a few color changes during the roasting process.
- The light brown color on your coffee beans indicates a weak body, medium aroma, and low sweetness. Sometimes the coffee may taste sour.
- A light to medium brown color on your roasting coffee beans indicates a full coffee body, mild sweetness, and a full aroma.
- Full medium brown color indicates a full body, mild sweetness, and a strong aroma.
- Medium to dark brown color indicates a very full body, strong sweetness, and a strong aroma.
- The dark brown color indicates a full body, full sweetness, and medium aroma.
- Very dark color indicates a weak body, low sweetness, and mild aroma.
How to Roast Coffee Beans Using an Oven
There are multiple benefits of roasting your coffee beans using an oven. They include:
- You’ll roast a lot of coffee beans using an oven when compared to other roasting methods.
- Roasting coffee using an oven requires less work compared to other roasting methods. All you have to do is stir them often to distribute heat evenly.
- You don’t need to purchase any expensive equipment or specialized tools when using this roasting method.
- Roasting coffee using an oven gives you a feeling of personal accomplishment.
Step-By-Step Guide on How to Roast Coffee in an Oven
- Green coffee beans
- An oven
- Wooden spoon for stirring
- Perforated or regular oven trays
- Airtight container
- Heatproof mitts
- Preheat your oven up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Additionally, maximize your ventilation since the roasting process will produce smoke.
- Spread your green coffee beans over the regular or perforated tray. Ensure that you create one layer only without stacking them. Using a perforated tray gives you the best results.
- Place your tray in the oven on the middle rack. The middle rack provides a consistent roasting temperature.
- Roast the coffee beans as you stir them using the wooden spoon after a few minutes for an even roast.
- Listen for the first crack sound that occurs between three to five minutes. The first crack indicates that the coffee beans are lightly roasted. The second crack will happen roughly 60 seconds after the first crack. This crack indicates that the coffee beans are medium roasted.
- Remove the coffee beans from the oven using heat-proof mitts after they have roasted to your satisfaction.
- Transfer them into a metal colander and stir them to help them cool and remove the chaff. You can do this outside or in a sink to avoid creating a mess in the house.
- Leave your roasted coffee beans exposed to air for 12 hours for them to degas.
- After they have degassed, store the coffee beans in an airtight container. Use the coffee beans within a week for a fresh and perfect cup of coffee.
Types of Coffee Roasts
Light roast – lightly roasted coffee beans are light brown and have a dry surface.
Medium roast – medium roasted coffee beans are deeper brown and have a slight sheen on the surface.
Dark roast – dark roasted coffee beans are dark brown and they have a shiny and oily surface.
Burnt – burnt coffee beans are black, smoking hot, and oily. The beans smell burnt and are blue.
The coffee roasting time using an oven depends on your type of oven. However, the roasting time shouldn’t exceed 15 minutes. If your coffee beans have not roasted within 15 minutes, you can increase your oven temperature during the next roast by 25 degrees. Coffee that has been roasted for more than 15 minutes tastes dull and burnt.