There are many reasons to seek out a low acid coffee. Some are health-related, others simply a matter of taste. Most coffees are naturally slightly acidic, however, so your choice might be a little constrained.
There are, however, some truly delectable and delicious options on the virtual grocery shelves. Come with us as we sample some of the best low acid coffee choices out there.
At A Glance: Our Top 5 Low Acid Coffee Brands Of 2023
For those of you who don’t have the time right now to read our complete guide, check out our top picks just below.
- OUR TOP CHOICE
Simply The Best (Low Acid Coffee)
Our low acid single-origin Sumatran Gayo Coffee was our pick of the low acid coffee crops. The medium roast ground produces the maximum taste profile with the minimum acidity. It’s packed and sealed straight after roasting, so you know you’re getting super-fresh flavor.
This delectable dark caffeinated drink has a clean, sweet taste, with a delightfully robust body. The aftertaste is gloriously syrupy. We also detected notes of cacao nib, caramel, peach, and wisteria. And okay, we might have just closed our eyes and stood for a few delighted minutes while we literally smelled the coffee.
This coffee is wet-processed before being sun-dried. It’s not only Fair Trade, but Rainforest Alliance certified. It’s not the cheapest on the market but it is extremely good value for money. This family company started life in a garage and now has its own roastery. It offers over 130 gorgeous specialty coffees.
Next up is this exceptionally pleasant House Blend from Puroast. Acidity levels for Puroast coffee are 70% lower than other coffees. Not only that, but it also has 7 times more antioxidants than you’ll find in green tea.
The company takes pride in working with local co-ops, gourmet shops, and natural food stores. Oh, and if you’re wondering about that “70% less” claim, Dr. Taka Shibamoto from the University of California at Davis tested the brewed coffee and found it had a pH of 7.99.
Interested in some serious coffee study? This university has a whole department dedicated to coffee science.
Wondering how many cups of coffee you’ll probably get from a 2.5-pound bag? It obviously varies according to your taste, but it’s around 28 to 30 cups on average. That’s using 1.5 scoops – each scoop is around 2 tablespoons.
Like your low-acid coffee with a hint of chocolate? You’ll love the Subtle Earth organic gourmet coffee from Café Don Pablo. This medium-dark roast is USDA Organic Certified, and typically ships in 2-pound bags, either pre-ground or whole bean.
These 100% Arabica beans originate in the Marcala region of Honduras. No chemicals are used. The cherries themselves are used as fertilizer and for vermiculture (that’s earthworms to the rest of us). There are relatively few insects in the region, so insecticides are not used; instead, farmers use natural methods like planting peppers where necessary.
The brewed coffee has a lovely, deep flavor profile, with a hint of velvet in the body. As well as the chocolate, we detected caramel and honey. Don Pablo roast to order. There’s also a hint of vanilla in the aftertaste and a smidge of caramel. There’s a very palatable aftertaste, and there’s a choice of blends – light, medium-dark, and dark.
This company is proud of its family ties – the beans are grown, harvested, and processed in Colombia. Over a million coffee trees are managed under the Sharing Certified Program, and great care is taken to make sure that the coffee is 100% Arabica and not adulterated with past crop or sub-par beans.
It’s hard to resist a coffee with a name like Organic Mellow Belly. So we suggest you don’t even try. Just give in to your instincts, brew up a cup (or a travel mug, or a pot), sit back, relax, and enjoy.
Lucy Jo’s Coffee Roastery, family-run and in Upstate New York, produces this lovely low acid organic blend, which ships in 11-ounce packs. There’s a sublimely subtle hint of dark chocolate in this blend, which has a lovely, round, smooth overall taste. Although the acidity is mild, the taste is strong. We got our best results with about 1.5 tablespoons of coffee to every 6 ounces of water.
It combines 100% Arabica beans from single-origin plantations in Brazil and Indonesia. The coffee is hand-roasted in small batches and has an earthy, smooth, sweet flavor profile. It’s a delightful medium-dark roast and works very well in a French Press. The pH is around 5.5 to 5.7.
We liked the packaging too, with a bag that protects the coffee bag as well as an outer box. The aroma’s also pretty great.
We’re sticking with Arabica, organic, and single-origin for our next choice, Java Planet. This USDA certified organic Guatemalan coffee is also Smithsonian Migratory Bird Friendly (SMBC) certified.
The beans are grown without pesticides, GMOs or chemicals. They’re packed with healthful antioxidants. The Guatemala medium roast coffee has hints of caramel, chocolate, and fruit. The date of the roast is marked on every pack.
There’s a choice of sizes, 1 pound, 2 pounds, or 5 pounds. This coffee is only available as a whole bean pack, so you get to control the fineness of the grind. You’ll notice the benefits of the small-batch roast approach in the lack of bitterness or burnt flavor.
It typically takes about 4 months in total from the harvesting of the cherry to the receipt of the coffee. In the first 3 months, the cherries are harvested by hand, dried, rested, dry milled, and transported to the USA.
And now to another smooth medium roast, the Whole Bean Arabica Coffee from Verena Street. Yeah, we know. It’s a mouthful. But oh, such a delicious one.
The farms are Rainforest Alliance Certified, and once the beans have reached the USA, they are roasted and packed in Iowa. (Dubuque to be precise.) The coffee is decaffeinated via the Swiss Water method. This coffee is also Kosher certified by the Orthodox Union.
Blends have delightfully evocative names like Cow Tipper, Julien’s Breakfast Blend, Lock & Dam 11, Mississippi Grogg, and Sunday Roast Decaf. They’re all medium roasts, apart from Cow Tipper and Mississippi Grogg, which are flavored.
There are a couple of dark roasts too, with equally glorious names. Opt for Nine Mile Sunset, Shot Tower Espresso, and Sumatra. The taste of this coffee is glorious: creamy, dark, and smooth. Ideal proportions for a drip method are about a tablespoon of coffee to 6 ounces of water.
Pack sizes are 11 ounces, 12 ounces, 32 ounces, or 80 ounces. It’s not the cheapest option we looked at, but it’s worth it for the taste.
Peak Performance is a Fair Trade, pesticide-free, single-origin, non-GMO medium roast. These beans are 100% Arabica and grown at high altitudes.
It’s USDA certified organic and ships in 12-ounce bags. It’s a measured medium roast although other variants are available too, like cold brew, decaf ground, and dark roast whole bean.
Oh, and if you’re wondering why high altitudes are such a good location for coffee growing, it’s connected to the fact that the higher the elevation, the denser the coffee bean. And SHB, which stands for “strictly hard bean”, tells you that these are particularly dense coffee beans.
In general, coffee that is grown at high altitude also has more antioxidants. And we’re sure we don’t need to convince you too much of how gloriously delicious single-origin coffee is. It has a lovely, smooth taste, and is very keenly priced.
If you’re worried about mold, don’t be. The coffee is tested not once, but twice, for signs of mold, and the importers and the company location are FSMA certified. Typically, beans are roasted then shipped (to Amazon) within a 24 to 48 time period.
That saying about “Mother Knows Best” isn’t just a song from Disney’s take on Rapunzel. It definitely applies to Mommee Coffee, our next low acid coffee recommendation. Emilie was the mom who came up with the idea, in the course of a trip from San Francisco down to San Diego. (In case you’re wondering, that’s an 8-hour journey.)
The half-caff has a small amount of caffeine, so you get a little boost when you need it. It’s half-caff, organic, ground, Fair Trade, and water processed, and ships in 12-ounce packs.
The low acid means you can enjoy it even if your stomach is playing up. Take additional reassurance from the fact it’s water processed – no nasty chemicals in this production! And it’s also a certified Fair Trade coffee. The beans are sourced from Columbia, Ethiopia, Mexico, and Peru. Per ounce, it’s not the cheapest choice, but the blend is sublime.
This coffee is five times lower in acid on pH levels alone, with 60% less chlorogenic acid. The pH levels are between 5.8 and 6 – 6 is the decaf version. Oh, and the decaf process is chemical-free. It uses water.
We decided on Tylers Acid Free Organic for our next selection. It typically ships in 12-ounce bags and is marketed as the world’s first, indeed only, acid-free coffee. That’s right. Not low acid, but no acid.
It’s all to do with the roasting process – or “Z-Roasting”. It’s a relatively expensive coffee, but if you need the lowest acid coffee possible, it’s ideal. (Plus, you know, it tastes pretty good too.)
The beans are single-source and come from the Chiapas in Mexico. The beans are USDA Organic Certified AAA, and they’re 100% Arabica. Nothing is added to these beans. There’s no compromise on caffeine content, either. The average 6 to an 8-ounce cup of coffee has around 95 to 100 mg of caffeine. Tyler’s, on average, has around 150-200 mg for the same amount.
We do need to draw your attention to the fact that you should use filtered or purified water with this coffee, however. And we also added a little coconut milk to reduce any risk of bitterness.
Finally, we brewed up a lusciously lovely cup of Tieman’s Low Acid Dark Roast. We normally think of fusion in conjunction with the word cuisine, but it also applies to this deliciously divine whole-bean coffee.
There’s also a semi-dark roast decaf option, and a medium roast. Price-wise, it was one of our mid-range options at the time we sampled it. It comes packed in 10-ounce bags, either 1, 6, or 30 in a box. The average pH is 5.85%.
The coffee is fused with matcha green tea, Rooibos red team, and goji berry powder. If you’re wondering why that’s such a big deal, the matcha is known for its antioxidant properties.
Rooibos is known to have stomach-settling properties. And goji berries are a “wonder food”, with anti-inflammatory aspects. If you’re at all sensitive to goji berries, one of the ingredients in this innovative blend, you might want to bear in mind that they’re high in lectins.
The coffee beans are grown in Central and South America and are 100% Arabica. On average you’ll get around 40 8 ounce cups out of a 10-ounce bag. You’re in charge of this one – you can grind the beans to the perfect consistency for whatever brewing method you’re using.
In terms of caffeine content, one average serving of the medium roast has 69 mg of caffeine. And those all-important pH levels are 5.75 for the decaf, 5.84 for the medium roast, and 5.97 for the dark.
Low Acidic Coffee Brands: How To Buy Well
First of all, while it might sound a little counter-intuitive, a light roast coffee will often be higher in acidity than a medium or dark roast. Other factors also come into play.
This includes the location of the coffee farm, as well as the altitude and soil acidity. Coffee grown in shady locations is also usually more acidic. Washing coffee beans also raises acidity.
Is Coffee Acidic Or Basic?
If you’re wondering what we mean by basic, it’s related to the pH scale. Anything below 7 is regarded as acidic; anything above is alkaline, or basic, also referred to as base. So, is coffee acidic or basic? Well, it’s to the acidic side of neutral, but not as much as other substances like wine or fruit juice.There are several different acids in coffee. Another question at the back of your mind might be is acid bad for you. And just how acidic is coffee, anyway? Well, most coffee has an acidity of between 4 to 5.
Is Decaf Coffee Acidic?
While decaf coffee, in general, is lower in acidity than ordinary varieties, you can have high acidity coffees that are low in caffeine, and high caffeine varieties that are low in acidity. So just because a coffee is decaffeinated, don’t assume that it’s automatically low in acidity. The key is the pH level.
We’re just going to explain the pH scale. Every substance we eat or drink will be somewhere between 1 (ultra-acidic – think hydrochloric acid) and 14 (ultra-alkaline – think drain cleaner). Water is usually a 7 on the scale. There are various ways you can check acidity, including test strips.
Suggestions On How To Make Coffee Less Acidic
Brewing methods affect the acidity of your final beverage. Hot brew coffee is usually more acidic than cold brew. Hot water releases the acids in the coffee, while cold water does not. If you’re using hot water, the temperature also makes a difference.
Opt for a medium or darker roast rather than light; the grind also makes a difference. More finely ground coffee generally produces a less bitter brew. The less time the beans spend in the water, the more acidity is released. (The cold brew method is usually something of an exception here.)
If you’re using a metal filter, try adding a paper filter. Another option is to add a little milk or creamer. If dairy isn’t an option, give coconut milk, rice milk or oat milk a try.
Coffee Acidity And Coffee Tamer
Back in 1996, one Ismail Macit Gurol took out a patent on what was described as a method “for reducing coffee acidity”. The trademark “Coffee Tamer” was registered in 2006.
All you do is add it to your coffee. A very few people might note a very slight aftertaste. Typically, you can buy packets of 400mg or a shaker bottle that contains 1.2 ounces of the powder.
There are other substances that you can use to make coffee less acidic, pretty close to an acid free coffee. Carefully crushed, dried eggshells added to coffee grounds can absorb some acidity. So can a little baking soda. Or salt.
Why Does Coffee Upset My Stomach?
Some research suggests stomach upsets can be caused by caffeine, catechols, and N-alkanoly-5-hydroxtryptamides. (Doesn’t that just trip off the tongue?) These little beauties are known to stimulate molecular mechanisms in the cells of the human stomach – cells responsible for acid secretion.
Our stomach acid is essential to allow us to digest and process our food and drink safely. The pH level of gastric acid is typically between 1.5 and 3.5.
Coffee And Acid Reflux
One condition that can cause issues is acid reflux. Symptoms can include heartburn, burning discomfort in the chest. And if this happens more than twice in a week, then you may have GERD, or acid reflux disease.
The lower esophageal sphincter, or LES, is a ring of muscle at the entrance to the stomach. Usually, when food passes through the LES, this valve closes immediately. If, however, it opens too frequently, or doesn’t completely close, the acid from the stomach might move up to the esophagus.
Several health conditions and dietary or medication habits can cause GERD. These include a hiatal hernia, being obese or overweight, and taking aspirin, ibuprofen or some muscle relaxants. Foods like tomato, chocolate, garlic, onions, or drinking alcohol, carbonated drinks, or coffee, can also cause issues.
How To Choose Low Acidity Coffee: What To Look For
There are many factors to consider when you’re deciding which low acidity coffee to plump for. The pH of the brewed coffee is important, as is the cost. Low acidity coffees typically run a little pricier than many everyday “run of the mill” coffees out there.
Then there’s the roasting process. Many of the low acidity coffees we looked at were roasted by hand in small batches. Whether the coffee is Fairtrade or not might be another deciding factor. Is it organic? Are other accreditations important – CCOF, Kosher, Rainforest Alliance, Smithsonian Bird Friendly?
Another important consideration is your brewing method. Some methods, like percolators, produce relatively acidic coffee.
Some of our chosen coffees worked best with the drip method. Some also worked well with K-Cup reusable pods. It was often all in the grind.
What Is The Best Low Acid Coffee?
We’ve sniffed. We’ve compared. We’ve ground (where necessary). And we’ve brewed and tasted.
There are myriad reasons why you might be contemplating one of the low acidity coffee brands. That doesn’t mean you need to compromise on taste, or mouthfeel, or aroma.
All these are the main reasons Sumatran Gayo Coffee is our favorite low-acid coffee. You don’t need to compromise on any of the above. Plus it’s great value. That’s not to say the others aren’t fabulous too. We just liked this one best. So, pass the sugar, and drink on!
Hi my name is Larry, a coffee aficionado from the US. I have already visited Colombia, Sumatra, Guatemala, Costa Rica, Ethiopia and Jamaica in my pursuit of finding the best-tasting coffee beans. I currently write from Bali and enjoy the relaxed life that you can only find in Canggu. Welcome to my coffee world!
Last update on 2023-06-02 / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API.