How to Reduce Bitterness in Coffee?

Apr 07 , 2023

Levista India

An Introduction to Coffee

Do you know that over 150 million people consume coffee daily? How interesting is that to find that people worldwide take your favourite beverage? Coffee supremacy! It is because of its rich aroma, unique taste and energising effects. To taste authentic coffee, you should buy Levista instant coffee powder for the best brew to taste authentic coffee!

The history of coffee heads back to the 15th century in Ethiopia, where a shepherd first discovered it after eating coffee berries! You heard it right. From Ethiopia, the word of the fantastic coffee spread worldwide, and now it has become an essential beloved drink. Though coffee is grown in many countries, Brazil has reserved the top position for its large production. 

With its several health benefits, coffee has become integral to many people’s lives. The drink that drives your mental alertness and reduces fatigue; if it tastes bitter, how will you feel? But why your coffee tastes different some days? Continue to read the blog!

What Causes Bitterness in Coffee?

Coffee will always have a hint of bitterness! Right. But they are of two types- Good and bad bitter tastes. The former is naturally found in coffee beans and balances the flavour, bright acids and complexity. The latter bitterness is because of the excess extraction of certain acids and proteins since it overpowers the sugars and aromas, causing an overly unpleasant and bitter taste. 

Extreme bitterness is a turn-off for coffee persons and first-time tasters. But how and what causes the lousy bitterness? Here’re the three things that impact the bitterness of coffee. They are, 

The brewing method

For example, an expresso machine produces a heavily concentrated brew, which results in more robust and bitter-tasting coffee. 

The roast level 

If the coffee beans are roasted for a long time, they tend to produce polyphenols, which bring a bitter taste than the lightly roasted ones.

The coffee beans used

Coffee beans' growing conditions and processing methods can determine the bitter taste. For instance, Robusta coffee beans are bitter compared to Arabica beans, which have a sweeter and fruiter flavour. 

Another significant factor adding bitterness to coffee is caffeine, which is naturally present in it. Other compounds like chlorogenic acid and catechins can also add bitterness on behalf of their part. 

That's why you should buy Levista instant coffee powder, which gives these compounds a balanced concentration and composition. 

How to Get Rid of the Bitterness in Coffee? Techniques and Methods


Bitterness in coffee need not always be a bad thing. So, don’t despair! But when it becomes overwhelming, you cannot bear it. We understand. Now, you can make and enjoy a smooth and yummy-tasting coffee by experimenting with a few techniques! 

1. Adjust the grind size

If you grind the coffee beans coarser, they may taste too bitter and weak and look watery. When the coffee is ground, the water will have more surface area to extract the bitter constituents from the beans. If the grind size is too fine, it leads to less extraction of those bitter elements. 

Adjusting the grind size lets you control the extraction rate and reduce the bitter components. Finding the right grind size is the KEY to brewing a well-balanced coffee. 

To adjust the grind size, you should play a bit. Coffee date with a coffee grinder? Yeah. Most of the grinders have a dial or knob that allows you to reconcile the grind size. It is advised to set the grind size to a finer setting to get a good coffee powder.

2. Reduce the brew time

What is brew time? During this period, coffee grounds are in contact with hot water. When coffee grounds are boiled in hot water, they emit various compounds. These compounds have two characteristics. Some contribute to the overall taste, flavour and aroma of the coffee. At the same time, the others are unpleasant and add bitterness to the coffee. 

When coffee is brewed longer, more bitter components are extracted from the coffee grounds into the beverage. Have you ever tasted Turkish coffee? It is too bitter because the brew time extends for a longer time. 

By reducing the brew time, bitterness can be reduced to a greater extent because there is less time for the coffee beans to release bitter compounds. Some examples include pour-over and drip coffee. 

3. Lower the water temperature

Water temperature plays a vital role in determining the bitterness of coffee. We learnt that reducing the brewing time could reduce the coffee's lousiness. But, the brewing process of coffee grounds and hot water should be kept at a low temperature. Now, we get a question, how hot is too hot?

The ideal temperature for coffee brewing is between 90°C to 96°C. And brewing above this temperature will only add bitterness to the coffee. It is because, when heated at a higher water temperature, the coffee grounds emit a bitter compound called caffeine. Though the substance is naturally found in coffee beans, too much can make your coffee day terrible. 

Other compounds like chlorogenic acids and tannins also add a bitter taste to the coffee, which people find unpleasant. Though setting the water temperature differs accordingly to one's preference, it is necessary to experiment with it to find the suitable sweet spot that works best for you. 

4. Experiment with roast levels

Do you know that roasting your coffee beans too much can impact their taste? Yes, you heard it right. When you roast the coffee beans, and it gets darker, it is likely to taste more bitter. The heat causes the natural sugars to caramelise and break down, developing and emitting bitter compounds. 

When you roast the coffee beans lighter, they can give a fruitier taste and have a pleasant flavour with brighter acidity because of the non-development of bitter compounds. But still, on a note, there are chances for your lightly roasted beans to taste bitter too. Choosing the right beans and fixing the perfect brew time is necessary. 

5. Add milk or cream

Do not panic if your coffee tastes bitter. You can still brighten your day by adding a little milk or cream to your cup of coffee. Milk and cream contain fats and proteins that coat the taste buds in your mouth, reducing the bitterness feeling. It is because the sweetness balances the bitterness and makes your coffee enjoyable. 

Also, milk and cream lower the overall acidity of coffee, neutralising the sour and bitter flavour by binding to the acidic components. But, adding milk or cream can make the coffee taste creamier or smoother and add a nutty or sweet flavour, changing its original taste profile. 

6. Use different brewing methods

You can reduce the bitterness in coffee by using different brewing methods and controlling other factors such as water temperature, brew time, and extraction. The different brewing methods include,


  • Pour-over: You pour hot water over coffee grounds in a filter cone or dripper in this method. By this, you will have greater control over the brewing process, thus reducing the extraction of bitter compounds. 
  • French press: You soak the coffee grounds in hot water for several minutes and press down the plunger to separate the brewed coffee from the grounds. But remember not to soak the coffee grounds in hot water for a long time since it can add more bitterness. 
  • Cold brew: You soak coffee grounds in cold water overnight or for several hours. By this, you will find your coffee to be milder and of smoother taste. You can also serve it over ice for a refreshing summer drink as iced coffee. 
  • Manual coffee maker: AeroPress coffee maker models can use air pressure to extract the flavour from the grounds, producing a clean and smooth cup of coffee by shortening the brewing time. 

    7. Clean your equipment

    Your coffee equipment adds bitterness with coffee oil, excess residues or mineral buildup to your beverage, affecting the taste of your coffee. Over time, if you don’t clean your coffee maker, the coffee oils and residues can get built up in your equipment. 

    By washing your equipment regularly, you can ensure the taste of your coffee. Also, it should be noted that if you are using tap water, there are chances for the minerals to get deposited in the appliance. You can use filtered or bottled water to clean your coffee maker to avoid this.

    Old coffee grounds allow bacteria to grow in the equipment, making your coffee taste bitter and paving the way for your sickness. 

    You can always choose Levista instant coffee powder because it is smoother and tastes fruitier without any bitter taste!

    How to Choose the Right Coffee Beans?


    The choice of coffee beans has a significant impact on the bitter taste. It is because coffee beans naturally have bitter-emitting constituents. Hence, opting for suitable coffee beans with a smoother and more flavourful profile is crucial. Here’re some tips to choose the right coffee beans.

    • High-Quality Beans: Never compromise the quality of the coffee beans. High-quality blends help reduce bitterness and provide a balanced and enjoyable flavour.
    • Origin Of The Beans: If you do not like the bitterness in coffee, you should always opt for Arabica coffee beans to Robusta coffee beans. 
    • Whole Beans Coffee: You can retain the freshness and flavour by using whole beans coffee instead of pre-ground coffee, which has a bitter component. 
    • Freshly Roasted Beans: Ensure you use the newly roasted coffee beans maximum of two weeks since older beans can taste stale and bitter. 

    Why Should You Try Levista Instant Coffee?

    Levista gives you the ultimate coffee experience by providing as many choices as possible according to your preferences. Its coffee beans are exclusively curated from Coorg coffee estates. Every sip of your Levista coffee is a blend of exceptional quality and taste! So, now you can turn your lousy coffee day into Levista coffee day!


    Wrapping out, though it is personal preference, how a coffee should taste, there should be a balance! Bitter coffee can be good only up to a certain point. If it exceeds the parameter, you can’t take a single sip. 

    Hence, by looking into the brew time and water temperature and experimenting with different brewing methods, adding milk, cream or sugar, and choosing the right coffee beans, you can avoid bitterness in your coffee.


    1. Does salt make coffee less bitter?

    Yes. Adding a small pinch of salt to the bitter-tasting coffee can cut the bitterness and give a smoother drink. Our taste buds also react to the salty flavour instead of the bitter.

    2. What reduces coffee bitterness and improves its flavour?

    Adding salt, sugar, and cream, adjusting the brewing of the coffee, and choosing less bitter coffee beans can reduce the bitterness and adds flavour to it.

    3. Does boiling coffee make it bitter?

    Boiling water temperature plays a vital role in making the coffee bitter. It should be kept at the ideal temperature. More or less can make the coffee taste either bitter or sour. The perfect temperature is between 90°C to 96°C.

    4. Is it good to drink bitter coffee?

    Coffee naturally tastes bitter, so all you need is a balance. An ideal coffee should be less bitter and not too sweet or acidic.

    5. Which coffee blend is the least bitter?

    Out of all, Arabica coffee beans taste less bitter, and it is always better to choose white coffee beans that are lightly roasted.

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