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Coffee Types

What is White Coffee?

Innovations around coffee keep arising day after day. One of the many innovations is white coffee. White coffee is the latest trend, and you may have seen it marketed as a healthy and best drink if you’re looking to reach a caffeine peak. So, you may be wondering what white coffee is. You’re in the right place.


woman enjoying a nice cup of white coffee


In this article, we will discuss what white coffee is, the origin of white coffee, the benefits of white coffee, how to make white coffee, and everything else you need to know about white coffee. Let’s begin!


A Guide to White Coffee?

White coffee refers to coffee roasted for a short while and at low temperature. Usually, coffee beans are roasted at a temperature between 420 to 475F. White coffee beans are roasted at a temperature of 325 Fahrenheit.

Roasting the coffee bean at a low temperature gives you the white color of the bean. White coffee beans have more caffeine since the caffeine roasted out is very small. White coffee beans are also hard and denser, unlike the traditionally roasted coffee.

You will need a specialized commercial grinder for grinding purposes. It is difficult to grind white coffee with home grinders. This is why white coffee beans are mostly sold in their grounded form. A brewed cup of white coffee is pale beige.



Origin of White Coffee

All types of coffee come from green coffee beans, white coffee included. The difference between types of coffees is how they are made, which includes roasting, grinding, brewing, etc.

In short, white coffee comes from green coffee beans. Green coffee beans are of two types – Arabica and Robusta coffee beans. Coffee beans grow in different areas, and the climate of the coffee growing area impacts the overall taste of coffee after brewing.

White coffee originated from the Middle East, specifically from Yemen. In Yemen, white coffee was traditionally and is still flavored with hawaij. Hawaij is a mixture of spices like cumin, turmeric, cardamom, and black pepper. However, numerous variations exist.

White coffee has a nutty taste, low bitterness, and pronounced acidity. When the nutty taste of white coffee is combined with hawaij spice mix, the result is a delicious drink.

Don’t confuse white coffee with flat white. Unlike flat white, white coffee does not have added whiteners such as milk and cream to give it its color. White coffee color is a result of the low roasting temperature. The temperature is so low that the coffee beans don’t adopt the brown color of regular coffee.


What Is the Difference Between White Coffee and Black Coffee?

As mentioned earlier, all types of coffee originate from green coffee beans, which are either Arabica or Robusta. This applies to white coffee and black coffee. They are both from green coffee beans.

What sets the two types of beans apart is the roasting temperature, caffeine concentration, antioxidants concentration, taste and aroma, acidity and calories, and the brewing process.


Roasting Temperature

White coffee and black coffee have different roasting temperatures. For black coffee, the roasting temperature ranges between 420 Fahrenheit to 475 Fahrenheit depending on the type of roast – either light, medium, or dark roast.

When it comes to white coffee, the roasting temperatures are low. White coffee has a roasting temperature of 325 Fahrenheit. Most people refer to white coffee as half-baked. The roasting color in the two types of coffee is also different.

For black coffee, the roasting color is either light brown or dark brown, depending on the type of roast. On the other hand, white coffee roasting is white, as the name suggests.


Caffeine Concentration

Caffeine concentration lowers as you roast the coffee beans. The more you roast the coffee beans, the less the caffeine concentration.

White coffee has more caffeine concentration compared to black coffee. When roasting black coffee, most of the caffeine is roasted out, while in white coffee, 50% of the caffeine is retained.

If you rely on a cup of coffee to boost your energy levels, white coffee is the best choice. More caffeine concentration in white coffee will give you more energy boost.


Antioxidants Concentration

Coffee beans are a popular source of antioxidants. However, in black coffee, more antioxidants are lost during the roasting process since the roasting temperatures are high. When it comes to white coffee, more antioxidants are retained since the roasting temperature is low and fewer coffee beans contents are burned out.

One of the most important antioxidants retained in white coffee is chlorogenic acid. Chlorogenic acid is an antioxidant that is responsible for health benefits such as the reduced risk of diabetes, controls blood pressure problems, and also contributes to weight loss.


Coffee Taste and Aroma

As mentioned earlier, white coffee has a nutty taste, less bitterness, and some pronounced acidity. White coffee is roasted without the need for additives. Due to the low roasting process involved in white coffee, the natural sugar in the coffee beans is not burned out, and you can taste the bean flavor.

Black coffee tastes bitter. However, some people like the taste and enjoy it. You can also add some sweeteners to your black coffee to counteract the bitterness in your coffee.

Other than the taste, aroma also plays a huge role in your cup of coffee. Nothing beats the aroma of freshly brewed cups of coffee, especially in the morning.

The aroma in your coffee is a result of the compounds in your coffee beans. The more the roasting time of your coffee beans, the more the compounds are lost and the weaker the aroma.

Black coffee has a weaker aroma than white coffee. The bitter taste in black coffee can also contribute to the aroma of your coffee. However, some people love the black coffee aroma.

White coffee produces a natural, smooth and rich aroma. This is because the compounds that are responsible for aroma are not completely damaged by the high temperatures during the roasting process.


Acidity and Calories

The more you roast coffee beans, the more acidity. The roasting process involves breaking down the coffee bean contents. One of the contents that is broken down is oil. The longer you roast the coffee beans; the more oil you extract from the coffee beans. The oil is responsible for the acidity in your cup of coffee.

With that said, black coffee has more acidity than white coffee. Many people who are black coffee drinkers often complain about acid reflux. This is caused by the high acidity in the coffee. Black coffee makes the situation worse especially if you suffer from stomach ulcers.

On the other hand, white coffee has fewer acids because the oils in the coffee beans are not extracted long enough.

The number of calories in coffee depends on the sweeteners you add to your coffee. It is hard to drink white coffee on its own. So, you may choose to add sugar and milk to add some sweetness to your coffee. However, adding them is adding calories to your cup of coffee.

When it comes to black coffee, you may add a sweetener or not. Black coffee can be consumed without added sweeteners. However, as a result of the bitter taste, some people choose to add sugar to their black coffee. This adds to the number of calories in your cup of coffee.

If you’re looking to lose some weight or reduce the number of calories you take, black coffee is the best choice.


Brewing Process

Black coffee is easy to brew. All you have to do is get high-quality coffee beans, roast the beans depending on the type of roast you want, grind the roasted beans using a burr grinder – it gives you a variety of grind sizes, get the right brewing equipment for the correct grind size, then brew yourself a cup of coffee.

For white coffee, get quality ground white coffee. Here the problem is ensuring you buy white coffee grounds and nothing else. As we mentioned earlier, you cannot grind white coffee beans using a home grinder since they are hard.

After purchasing white coffee beans from a reliable manufacturer, use espresso or Aeropress brewing equipment. Use brewing equipment that gives you a highly concentrated brew.


How to Make White Coffee

Here is a general guide on how to make white coffee.

  • Buy ground white coffee.
  • Brew the coffee using an espresso machine, Aeropress, or a Moka pot.
  • Add some hawaij spice to your brew.
  • Add a sweetener if you want one. Almond milk is the best.


Let’s look at how to make white coffee using an espresso machine.

  • Buy ground white coffee.
  • Place the ground white coffee into your portafilter.
  • Run the first shot of water through the grounds and dump the water.
  • Run another shot of water, either single or double through your portafilter.
  • Use the second shot as the base of your espresso drink.
  • Serve your white coffee and add some hawaij and almond milk to flavor it.


Benefits of White Coffee

Here are some benefits of white coffee:

  • White coffee boosts your energy as a result of the high caffeine concentration.
  • White coffee keeps you alert as a result of the high caffeine concentration.
  • White coffee contains high amounts of antioxidants which have some health benefits such as weight loss, blood pressure control, and reducing the risk of diabetes.
  • White coffee is less acidic, and it is a better option especially for people who suffer from acid reflux after consuming coffee.



Now you have an idea what white coffee is. As you have seen, white coffee has some health benefits, and it is good for you. Black coffee has some health benefits too. So the choice between black and white coffee narrows down to your preferences.