A Comparison of Espresso Beans and Coffee Beans

Feb 08 , 2023

Levista India


Nothing quite like the rich, satisfying flavour of a perfectly brewed cup of coffee to kickstart your day. And while coffee lovers can debate the nuances of their favourite brews for hours, one question often arises: what's the difference between espresso beans and regular coffee beans?

At first glance, the two might seem interchangeable - after all, they're both beans used to make coffee. However, upon closer inspection, you'll find some key differences between the two types of beans that make them distinct in their own right. So, whether you're a coffee connoisseur or just starting your journey into the world of coffee, read on to discover the unique characteristics of espresso beans and coffee beans.

Did you know?


  • Espresso is not a particular type of coffee bean; it is a drink
  • One shot of Espresso requires 50 coffee beans
  • Brewed Espresso has a fat content of 2.5%, whereas filtered coffee has a lower fat content of 0.6%.


Are Espresso and Coffee Beans the Same?

Well, asking if espresso and coffee beans are the same is like asking if cycles and unicycles are the same things just because they both have wheels. 

Coffee beans come straight from the fruit of the coffee plant. They are packed with caffeine and can be brewed in various ways to create delicious cups of coffee. On the other hand, Espresso is one of the methods of preparing coffee. It involves forcing hot water through finely-ground coffee beans at high pressure, resulting in a strong and concentrated shot of coffee.

Espresso coffee beans sometimes contain a blend of robusta beans, which helps to enhance the crema. On the other hand, premium regular coffee beans are typically composed solely of arabica beans.

 While Espresso is made from coffee beans, not all are destined to become Espresso. Some are better suited for drip coffee, French press, or cold brew.

Can any coffee be used for Espresso? 

Espresso is a specific brewing method that requires specific coffee beans to achieve the aroma, rich, creamy texture and flavour. The beans should be roasted to produce a strong, complex flavour profile that can withstand the high pressure of the brewing process.

Difference Between Espresso and Coffee Beans  

Espresso and coffee are both made from coffee beans, but there are significant differences between the two, including the type of beans used, the roast level, the brewing method, and the flavour profile. Here's what you need to know regarding the difference between espresso and coffee beans:

Espresso beans are roasted longer and darker compared to coffee beans. The longer it is roasted, the richer its flavour will be, with less caffeine. They are made with dark roast beans, called an expresso roast. Dark roasted espresso beans can also have a slightly oily surface that helps to create the crema layer on top of the shot. 
On the other hand, regular coffee beans can be roasted to a range of levels, from light to dark roast. 
Espresso beans are finely ground to powdered sugar. This fine grind enables the high pressure and quick extraction time required for a shot of espresso. The espresso extraction process uses pressure and heat to quickly extract the flavours and aromas of the beans, resulting in a highly concentrated, strong, and flavorful shot of espresso.
The grind size of the espresso drink is small by brewing finely ground coffee beans under pressure, which are slightly finer than regular coffee beans. 
The coffee beans can be ground to a coarser consistency depending on the brewing method. The coarser grind allows for a slower extraction time and allows the water to come in contact with more coffee grounds, resulting in a more evenly extracted cup of coffee.
Espresso is brewed using a machine that forces hot water through tightly packed, finely ground espresso beans, creating a concentrated shot of coffee with a creamy layer of crema on top. 
It can be brewed using various methods such as drip, pour-over, or French press, allowing a longer extraction time and a more diluted flavour.
As espresso drink is roasted and brewed differently, thus it has a unique flavour compared to regular coffee beans. It tends to have a stronger, more concentrated flavour than regular coffee.
Coffee made from roasted darker beans will generally have a bolder, more bitter flavour, while beans that are roasted lighter will have a more nuanced flavour profile.
The beans used to make espresso are typically a blend of different types of coffee beans, often including Arabica and Robusta beans.
Coffee beans are the seeds of the coffee plant, which is native to the highlands of Ethiopia in East Africa. 
Caffeine content
Espresso beans are typically a blend of different coffee beans that have been roasted to a darker level than most coffee beans. As a result, they contain more caffeine per unit weight than coffee beans. A single shot of espresso (30 ml) contains approximately 63 mg of caffeine on average.
Espresso beans are typically made from a blend of different coffee beans, and they are roasted to a darker level than most coffee beans. As a result, they tend to have a higher caffeine content per unit weight than coffee beans. On average, a single shot of espresso (30 ml) contains around 63 mg of caffeine.
On the other hand, coffee beans can vary widely in their caffeine content depending on the type of bean, the roast level, and the brewing method.

How to make Espresso from coffee beans?

  • Start by grinding your coffee beans using a grinder. Once you have ground your coffee, use a tamper to press it down into your portafilter. The coffee should be pressed down firmly. 
  • Preheat your espresso machine and portafilter by running hot water through them.
  • Place your portafilter into your espresso machine and start the extraction process. The ideal extraction time is around 25 seconds for a single shot. 
  • Watch as the Espresso pours into your shot glass or demitasse cup. The crema (the creamy layer on top of the Espresso) should be a rich golden colour.

Espresso Beans vs Coffee Beans: Exploring the Differences with Levista

With a wide range of products, including coffee beans, instant coffee, and coffee machines, Levista offers something for every coffee lover. So, whether you prefer the strong, concentrated flavour of Espresso or the more subtle flavours of coffee, choosing the right type of bean is key.

Wrapping Up 

We hope the above-listed points gave you valuable insights into the difference between espresso and coffee beans. Remember that making Espresso requires practice to ace your ideal recipe. You should experiment with different coffee beans to taste the aromatic, flavoursome coffee and spruce your early mornings with great energy!


Are all coffee beans for Espresso?

Coffee beans from any origin can make espresso drinks at any roast level. Darkly roasted beans are historically used to make rich-flavoured coffee.

Why drink expresso instead of coffee?

It is also a much healthier option than the typical coffee types consumed throughout the day. Instead of adding sugars and creams, Espresso can be enjoyed without those extra calories and fats.

What tastes better, Espresso or coffee?

As Espresso is roasted and grounded with different brewing methods, and thus it has a better aromatic and flavoursome taste than other regular coffee beans.

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