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Make The Best Black Coffee From Home With These Top 8 Coffee Brands


The best black coffee is full of nuanced flavor that excites your palette while waking you up, which is why we love Volcanica’s El Salvador Peaberry Coffee

Drinking your coffee black requires care and intentionality during the shopping process. You don’t want to grab any old brand of coffee off the shelf. For great-tasting black coffee, you need to find high-quality beans from a company that puts care into every step of the process. 

Finding the best beans to make incredible black coffee at home is difficult, so we are here to help. After tirelessly searching for hours, we found the top 8 coffee brands for making the best black coffee at home.

Our List of The Best Black Coffee

  1. Our Top PickVOLCANICA El Salvador Peaberry Coffee
  2. Best Light Roast LIFEBOOST Light Roast Coffee
  3. Best Medium RoastVERVE Street Level Coffee
  4. Best Dark RoastCOUNTER CULTURE Big Trouble Coffee
  5. Best Pre-GroundSTUMPTOWN Holler Mtn Coffee
  6. Best For BeginnersONYX Southern Weather Coffee
  7. Best For Bold Flavor – DEATH WISHE Medium Roast Coffee
  8. Best DecafPURITY CALM Coffee

The Top 8 Coffee Brands for Making Best Black Coffee

Our Top Pick

1 VOLCANICA El Salvador Peaberry Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Almond, praline, and soft floral notes
  • Origin: Finca Serbia coffee farm in the region of Santa Ana, El Salvador.
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Form: Whole bean

Volcanica is known for showcasing the finest single-origin coffee from mineral-rich volcanic soil around the world, and its roasts truly showcase the region’s flavors. Their El Salvador Peaberry roast has earned the top spot on our list because of its complex and sophisticated flavor.

El Salvador is rich in volcanic soil, perfect for producing subtly sweet and aromatic coffee. Most people appreciate that Salvadorian coffee has less acidity, making it gentle on the stomach. Only 5% of coffee crops in El Salvador are Peaberry coffee, and Volcanica has partnered with one of the few farms there that grow it.

Coffee connoisseurs around the world seek out peaberry coffee. Peaberry beans are picked by hand and appear smaller and more round than traditional coffee beans. Their shape creates a denser, flavorful brew that tastes smoother than other coffees. Even dark-roast lovers appreciate the full-bodied flavor of this unique coffee.

Because VOLCANICA goes to great lengths to ensure that only the best beans are used, the price tag on a bag of beans can be a little high. Apart from that, the only complaint is that the flavor can be a little overpowering or unusual for some. Ultimately, it’s a matter of preference.

Best Light Roast

2 LIFEBOOST Light Roast Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Clean and Smooth
  • Origin: Nicaragua
  • Roast Level: Light
  • Form: Whole Bean or Ground

If you love light, fresh-tasting coffee, a light roast is the way to go! However, one of the drawbacks of light roast is its high acidity. That is less so the case with Lifeboost Coffee.

This single-origin coffee has a refreshing flavor and the strong caffeine kick of light roast coffee without uncomfortable side effects. Most people agree that this coffee is easy on your stomach yet retains robust flavor. That is a difficult combination!

Lifeboost Coffee is known for its commitment to making coffee that is as good for you as it is delicious. It is roasted to order and thoroughly tested for mycotoxins, heavy metals, pesticides, and more to ensure a truly fresh cup of morning brew.

Their special techniques generate delicious coffee, but the downside is that it can be expensive. Some people don’t want to spend that much on coffee. However, others find it is well worth the money.

Best Medium Roast

3 VERVE Street Level Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Clementine, Red Apple, Honeycomb
  • Origin: Guatemala, Colombia, and Honduras
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Form: Whole Bean

You might recognize VERVE from our Top 10 Best Coffee for Cold Brew. Their Seabright blend won our top spot on that list. However, for black coffee, we recommend their Street Level blend.

Street Level is an excellent example of the strong, nuanced, and balanced flavor expected from medium-roast coffee. For many, Street Level has become their “go-to” coffee. To optimize its complex sweetness and light citrus notes, It is recommended to use the Pour Over method.

All beans are sourced directly from farmers and roasted fresh in Santa Cruz, California. Freshness is key with these beans. Some found that the flavor is noticeably different when freshness isn’t maintained.

Best Dark Roast

4 COUNTER CULTURE Big Trouble Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Nutty, caramel, chocolate
  • Origin: Changes season to season
  • Roast Level: Dark
  • Form: Whole Bean

Dark roasts are for those who love a bold, full-bodied cup of coffee. They tend to have a slightly smoky flavor and lean toward the bitter side. Most people need additives like cream or sugar to break up the bitterness. If you want the bold flavor of a dark roast without additives, you need one with a balanced flavor.

Counter Culture’s Big Trouble blend uses beans that have a naturally nutty or chocolatey flavor profile. Many agree that the result is coffee that is more balanced and full of character than other dark roasts they’d tried.

Dark roasts also have the lowest acidity level of all coffee roasts. This is why people with sensitive stomachs enjoy them.

The only potential downside to this blend is that the formulation changes from season to season. Counter Culture likes to change up which beans they use to ensure quality. Their desire for quality is at the expense of consistency. The bag you buy tomorrow might not taste like the bag you bought last month.

Best Pre-Ground

5 STUMPTOWN Holler Mtn Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Citrus, Caramel, Berry Jam
  • Origin: East Africa, South & Central America
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Form: Pre-ground

Pre-ground coffee is convenient, but with that convenience comes lower quality and reduced freshness. For delicious black coffee, freshness is key. From the moment you open the bag, you are hit with a powerful fresh coffee aroma.

Stumptown understands the complexities of coffee and consciously attempts to optimize the drinking experience by traveling the world to source the best beans. Stumptown has blended the sweet flavors of South and Central American coffee with the bright aromas of East African coffee.

Some find it has a slight tannin taste. However, most agree that this coffee has a naturally sweet and smooth flavor.

Best For Beginners

6 ONYX Southern Weather Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Milk chocolate, plum, candied walnut, juicy citrus finish
  • Origin: Colombia San Antonio, Ethiopia Nano Genji
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Form: Whole bean

Southern Weather by ONYX is an approachable blend well-balanced with notes of chocolate, walnuts, and fresh fruit. It is perfect on its own or with additives, which makes it a flexible blend great for households with various coffee preferences.

ONYX refers to Southern Weather as their “in-house” blend and features it as the primary blend in all their cafes. All of ONYX’s coffee blends are roasted in-house and are accompanied by the pricing and trade data for each batch.

The price per ounce is on the higher end, which makes it less accessible. But most People don’t seem to care. Even with the high price, Southern Weather has become the new go-to coffee for most first-time users. They agree the only downside is that this coffee will ruin other coffees.

Best For Bold Flavor

7 DEATH WISH Medium Roast Coffee

  • Flavor notes: Caramel, peanuts, apricot, and milk chocolate
  • Origin: Arabica and robusta beans
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Form: Pre-ground

Don’t let the name scare you. Death Wish coffee leads with a ‘rebellious point of view.’ They are committed to providing bold flavor and a smooth, never bitter or burnt finish. Even their medium roast packs a flavor bolder than your average cup.

It features beans grown at a high altitude to maximize flavor and aromatics. Those beans are then roasted to a lighter shade of bold. This locks in robust flavor while maintaining enough caffeine to kick-start your day.

Beware! This coffee has a lot of caffeine. It is strong, and people who love strong coffee appreciate that. But be careful. We don’t recommend these beans if you have a sensitive stomach or caffeine sensitivity.

Best Decaf


  • Flavor notes: Dark chocolate, vanilla, sweet red apple
  • Origin: Arabica beans from an unknown region
  • Roast Level: Medium
  • Form: Whole bean or single-serve sachets and coffee pods.

We suggest Purity Coffee’s Calm blend if you are sensitive to caffeine or want the ultimate healthy coffee-drinking experience. It comprises specialty-grade organic coffee and is decaffeinated using a chemical-free natural water process.

The natural water process removes 99.99% of the caffeine and retains high levels of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. It also allows Calm to hold onto most of the bean’s natural flavor.

Most of the time, the bar is lowered for decaf coffee. Most agree that Calm is not only good decaf but the best coffee they’ve ever had. Many would choose it with or without caffeine. Few People also noted that if you are used to dark roasts that are inherently robust with a more chocolatey flavor, you might find this coffee slightly sour.

The only major downside with this coffee is the price. Purity coffee is extremely high quality, but that quality comes with a price. You just have to decide if it’s worth it.

What is considered black coffee?

Black coffee is any coffee served without additives like milk, cream, or sweetener. It gets its name from the dark, black-like color coffee naturally has in a cup. 

What are the benefits of drinking black coffee?

Black coffee is the perfect morning pick-me-up for health-conscious individuals. Milk, cream, and sweeteners are inherently unhealthy, so adding them to coffee makes it less healthy. Therefore, drinking your coffee black maximizes the potential health benefits.

A few benefits of drinking black coffee:

  • 0 fat, 0 cholesterol, 0 Sodium, 0 Carbs, 0 Sugar, 4% Potassium
  • Coffee is an excellent catalyst for losing weight.
  • Coffee stimulates the nervous system and boosts the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine, which cause elevated mood and productivity. 
  • Coffee can work as an anti-depressant thanks to its ability to increase the amount of serotonin and dopamine in the brain, which counteract some depression symptoms.
  • Coffee is a diuretic, causing drinkers to urinate more frequently. While this might sound unpleasant, it’s actually a good thing. Coffee can help cleanse your stomach and reduce unwanted water retention and bloating. 
  • Studies have shown that regularly drinking black coffee can lower harmful liver enzymes in the blood. 

Buyer’s Guide: How to Find the Best Black Coffee Brands. 

Best Black Coffee

There are countless coffee brands, each with numerous options, so finding the best beans to make the perfect cup of black coffee can be intimidating. For the most part, it comes down to preference. But there are a few elements you’ll want to consider when shopping. 


Acidity causes the sharpness you experience at the front of your mouth or the dryness at the back of the palate. It can dominate your palette and overshadow the more subtle flavor notes in the beans. 

Most people prefer a low acidity level when drinking black coffee. However, others like the sensation it brings. Figure out which camp you live in, and then go from there. 


Freshness is vital. Coffee, in any form, will go bad when exposed to the air. The coffee bean becomes stale over time, and if you leave your brewed coffee exposed to the air, it will become bitter and burnt. 

So, when shopping for coffee, choose brands that roast to order or provide airtight packaging. Then make sure you store your coffee in an airtight container. 


Coffee starts as a green bean that needs to be roasted for the delicious flavor that we all know and love to be brought out. The roasting level will determine the amount of oils, acids, body, and aromas drawn out, thus determining the final flavor. 

Light Roast – Light roasts have the highest levels of caffeine and acid but the lowest amount of oil on the bean’s surface. They have very little body and provide a light, almost herbal flavor that is perfect for mild coffee lovers. 

Medium Roast – Medium roasts are the most balanced variety. They have no oil on the surface, but the longer roast time creates a more robust flavor and slightly thicker body. They have a moderate caffeine level and less acidity than light roasts. 

Dark Roast – Dark roasts are ideal for those who love a strong cup of coffee. They have the oiliest surface, creating a bold smokey flavor that dominates the beverage. Dark roasts have the lowest amount of caffeine and acidity but the most pronounced bitterness. 


Black coffee allows you to taste the coffee you are drinking. You’ll begin to notice various flavor notes that might have been hidden behind additives in the past. These small flavor nuances are often the result of the growing process. 

Coffee beans grown in the shade on the side of a volcano in Guatemala will taste different than those grown in the low-altitude regions of Western Uganda. The water, soil, and altitude all play a role in determining what flavors get brought out during the roasting process. 

As you taste-test various coffee brands, take note of the regions that produce your favorites. This will help guide you as you continue to explore. 

Brewing Method:

The region, roast, acidity, and freshness determine the flavor, but how much of that flavor ends up in your cup depends on your brewing method. Manual brewing methods like a french press, AeroPress, pour-over, or Chemex allow you enough control to tailor the coffee to your preference. 

The benefits of using a manual brewing method

  • You control the water temperature.
  • You can apply blooming techniques to help draw out the flavors. 
  • You can make smaller batches to ensure freshness. 
  • The equipment is surprisingly affordable and easy to use. 
  • All of the methods take at most 5 minutes. 

If you are new to manual brewing methods, we recommend using a french press. It is easy to use and produces delicious coffee.

The Verdict

When we want to make delicious black coffee at home, we look for fresh, high-quality beans, with a well-balanced flavor, from a company that cares. We love the unique and sophisticated taste of Volcanica’s El Salvador Peaberry Coffee.

Ultimately, the best black coffee matches your personal needs and preferences. No matter your tastes, we believe you’ll find the proper coffee to make your perfect black coffee on our list. 

We encourage you to taste-test and explore until you find that perfect cup! Let us know how your tasting journey goes!


We are not medical professionals, but according to our research, the answer is YES. Without all the additives, black coffee has 0 fat, 0 cholesterol, 0 Sodium, 0 Carbs, and 0 Sugar. It is also rich in antioxidants that help with weight loss and caffeine that helps stimulate your metabolic system making you less hungry.

Coffee is also a diuretic, which helps reduce your body’s water content. This can help with water retention and lead to temporary weight loss. Plus, if you drink black coffee after a meal, its chlorogenic acid will slow down the production of glucose and fat cells.

Brew your black coffee however you like! For high-quality black coffee, the only brewing requirement is that you brew with intention. Don’t just throw it together and expect awe-inspiring coffee. If you are intentional about the brewing process, you’ll get incredible coffee you can easily enjoy.

Good black coffee has a nuanced flavor that reflects the origin and roasting process. Ideally, it should not taste burnt, stale, metallic, or watery. There might be a slight bitterness or dry finish, but that depends on the roast and acidity levels.

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Victoria Monge

Victoria Monge

As a writer and researcher here at Cool Coffee Talk, Victoria is able to share her knowledge and insights with all of our readers. She is the first to admit that she doesn’t have all the answers, but what she doesn’t know she will learn! Her only hope is that her passion is contagious and her insights are helpful!
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