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Coffee Tips

What Not to Eat with Coffee?

Coffee is a popular beverage known for its ability to boost your energy levels and fine-tune your focus. In fact, most people can’t start their day without sipping their daily cup of joe. Moreover, coffee has worthwhile benefits beyond the morning pick-me-up and the pleasant aroma. Drinking coffee has been linked to health benefits such as lowering the risk of type 2 diabetes, supporting your brain health, promoting weight loss, and lowering the risk of depression.

not eat with coffee

Travel to any part of the world, and you’re bound to see someone taking coffee in one form or another. Usually, coffee tastes better when enjoyed with food. However, not all types of food can be enjoyed with coffee. Eating some foods with coffee may harm your health. This article will discuss the types of food you shouldn’t pair with coffee and those that you can pair. Read on!


What Not to Eat with Coffee

  1. Milk

Most people consume milk and coffee simultaneously. While milk blocks hunger, coffee helps reduce drowsiness. However, consuming milk and coffee simultaneously isn’t good for your body. This is because coffee may inhibit the consumption of calcium in your body thus leading to more calcium wastage through urine.

  1. Meat

Meat and other foods containing zinc such as oysters, nuts, poultry, red meat, and beans shouldn’t be consumed at the same time as coffee. This is because coffee inhibits your body from absorbing zinc since it contains tannates that form bonds with certain minerals in food. These bonds are difficult for your body to break down which leads to the excretion of these minerals that your body would otherwise absorb.

  1. Fried Foods

While fried foods taste better when paired with coffee, the habit of consuming both simultaneously may be harmful to your health. This is because, fried foods are high in cholesterol and when combined with the caffeine in coffee, the cholesterol levels in your body can quickly increase.


What to Eat with Coffee

While not all foods are great companions to coffee, here are some great coffee pairings.

  1. Scrambled Eggs

Scrambled eggs are a perfect pair with coffee. A combination of scrambled eggs and coffee will fill you up and get you ready for the day. You can make simple scrambled eggs with salt and pepper or mix them with vegetables of your choice.

  1. Crepes

Coffee pairs perfectly with crepes. Crepes are similar to pancakes but a bit thinner. You can make your crepes with savory ingredients such as cheeses, vegetables, or ham.

  1. Pancakes and Waffles

Pancakes and waffles are two breakfast staples that pair perfectly with coffee. You can top your pancakes and waffles with bananas, bacon, sweet syrup, and butter.

  1. Tiramisu

Tiramisu is a great snack for your afternoon coffee or your dessert. The snack contains espresso in it which makes it a great blend with coffee.

  1. Savory Sandwiches

Savory sandwiches and coffee make a great lunchtime combo. You can fill your savory sandwiches with salami, corned beef, ham, or sausages. In addition, you can pair your coffee with a grilled cheese sandwich if you aren’t in the mood for meaty things.


Foods to Avoid Before Drinking Coffee

Both regular and decaffeinated coffee can prevent your body from absorbing and using some beneficial nutrients. Therefore, there are some foods that you should avoid eating before drinking your coffee to avoid nutritional deficiencies. They include:

Foods that Contain Calcium

You should avoid calcium-containing foods such as dairy products before drinking your coffee. The caffeine in coffee affects calcium absorption in your body thus leading to more calcium excretion through urine. However, the amount of calcium that you excrete through urine depends on the amount of coffee that you take. Therefore, you can maintain adequate calcium levels in your body by minimizing the number of cups to less than three cups of coffee per day.

Foods with Zinc

As mentioned earlier, coffee contains tannates that form bonds with certain minerals in foods thus making it difficult for your body to break them down. Drinking both regular and decaffeinated coffee can prevent the absorption of zinc in your body. Therefore, avoid consuming foods with zinc such as oysters, beans, red meat, nuts, and poultry before drinking coffee.


According to research, coffee affects the absorption of some vitamins such as vitamin D. A 2017 study shows that people who drink more coffee have lower levels of vitamin D. Therefore, it’s important to manage your caffeine intake to keep your vitamin levels healthy.

Foods with Nonheme Iron

Iron in a diet comes in two forms. These are heme iron in animal foods and nonheme iron in plant foods. People who drink coffee especially vegans and vegetarians have difficulties absorbing iron since coffee contains tannates that inhibit nonheme iron absorption. To maximize iron absorption in your body, avoid eating foods that are rich in nonheme iron such as lentils, peas, chickpeas, soy products, and nuts before drinking coffee.



While coffee tastes good when enjoyed with food, not all types of foods pair perfectly with your cup of joe. Foods containing calcium, zinc, vitamins, and nonheme iron should be avoided before drinking coffee. What’s more, fried foods should also be avoided when taking coffee. If you’re looking for foods to enjoy with coffee, try eating scrambled eggs, pancakes, crepes, tiramisu, savory sandwiches, and waffles.