Best Decaf Coffee To Buy – An Ultimate Guide

best decaf coffee

Love coffee, but don’t want caffeine? Decaf has you covered. There can be several reasons why you don’t want caffeine in your coffee. We won’t get into the specifics. What we will get into, is the best decaf coffee.

This is intended as a comprehensive guide for decaf coffee. We’ll talk all about decaf and how it matters to you. And if you’re looking for product recommendations, we’ve got that covered too.

The selection goes from gourmet whole bean coffee to decaf K cup, and everything in between.

Saddle up!

Best Overall: Lifeboost Healthy Coffee

No caffeine, and a coffee that puts a premium on health. Now that’s my kind of decaf! Lifeboost uses the Swiss Water Decaf technique to remove caffeine from its beans. The technique is relatively gentle (as compared to some other decaf techniques). It removes most of the caffeine from the beans and avoids damage to the overall taste and flavor.

And that’s a good thing – it would be a pity if the overall taste and flavor of this wonderful coffee were compromised. Lifeboost Healthy Coffee is a single-source coffee harvested from a farm high up in the mountains of Nicaragua. Placed at a high elevation, the coffee plants are shaded from the sun by strategically placed trees and other plants.

Lifeboost Coffee Medium Roast Low-Acid Coffee

All these characteristics come together to create an excellent cup of joe. Lifeboost coffee is certified Fair Trade and USDA Organic. It also undergoes independent testing for low acidity (low pH) and to ensure that there are no mycotoxins. 

While Lifeboost coffee in general is available in several roasts and as ground or whole beans, the decaf option is somewhat limited. Lifeboost decaf is available only as a medium roast ground coffee. It’s a great pick as an excellent-tasting decaf.

Highlights

  • Single-origin coffee from Nicaragua
  • 100% Arabica coffee
  • Swiss Water Decaf process
  • High-grown and shade-grown coffee for excellent flavor
  • Certifications: USDA Organic and Fair Trade
  • Medium roast, ground coffee

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The Top Decaf Picks For 2021

The Dark Roast Decaf Selection

Top Picks Of Organic Decaf

Decaf Coffee For Your Cold Brew

Formidable Decaf Espresso Beans

Best Supermarket Decaf Coffee Picks

Amazon’s Best Of Whole Bean Coffee

Gourmet Decaf Kona Coffee

Best Of Swiss Water Decaf Colombian Gourmet

Sumptuously Flavored Decaf Coffee

Instant Coffee With Decaf Goodness

Remarkable Decaf K Cups

What Is The Best Decaf Coffee? – Editor’s Picks

Here are the top picks for the best decaf coffee. Considering the available choices, I’m throwing a wider net here and recommending top choices for a few categories. 

Stone Street Coffee Decaf Whole Bean Coffee Central American Origin – Best Whole Bean Coffee

Stone Street Coffee Decaf Whole Bean Coffee Central American Origin

A quality decaf with a touch of gourmet goodness, this coffee is sure to appeal to those who prefer the finer things. Stone Street Coffee Whole Bean Decaf is sourced from Central America. The highlands of Central America are responsible for some of the best-liked coffee.

Along with being decaf, this is also a low acid coffee that’s easy on the stomach. Overall, this promises the goodness of coffee without the worry of caffeine. A pretty good match.

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Folgers Classic Decaf Medium Roast Ground Coffee – Top Choice For Ground Coffee

Folgers Classic Decaf Medium Roast Ground Coffee

As much as we love gourmet coffee, it can sometimes strain budgets. And well, the gourmet pick isn’t everyone’s cup of coffee. Often, it makes sense to pick the big name from a supermarket shelf. And that’s where you choose the Folgers Classic Decaf Medium Roast ground coffee. It’s a well-priced and smooth-tasting cup of decaf.

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Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Dark Magic Decaf – Best Decaf K Cup

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Dark Magic Decaf

Green Mountain Decaf Dark Magic is a delightful coffee that’s bold and feels like really strong coffee. There’s no caffeine here, but this extra bold blend gets very close to the taste of a regular high-quality dark roast. Decaf lovers, this is the natural pick for your single-serve coffee machines.

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Dark Roast Decaf Coffee — The Bold And The Brave

Jo Coffee Organic Decaf Ground Coffee

No Fun Jo Organic Decaf Ground Coffee

Jo Coffee is well-known for offering one of the highly-caffeinated, strong K cup, and coffee. It’s interesting to see that they also have an amazing decaf option. Interestingly, they’ve named this one the “No Fun Joe”, perhaps as an allusion to the lack of caffeine. 

The name aside, this is actually a “fun” coffee. It is pretty strong and bold for a decaf, while retaining the natural flavor and qualities of the coffee. Jo Coffee says they use beans only from the top 2% of arabica grown globally. 

This high-quality medium-dark roast coffee has taste notes of sweet blueberry and milk chocolate. The dark roast decaf coffee is made through the Swiss Water Process and is certified organic, fair trade, and kosher.

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of top-quality arabica coffee
  • Taste notes of sweet blueberry and milk chocolate
  • Certifications: USDA Organic, Fair Trade, Kosher
  • Dark roast

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Kicking Horse Coffee, Decaf, Whole Bean

Kicking Horse Coffee Decaf Whole Bean

Kicking Horse coffee has flavor and taste going for it. These whole beans are Swiss Water Process decaf in an attempt to keep the inherent flavor of the beans intact. This is a bold dark roast and offers taste notes of dark chocolate, cacao nibs, brown sugar. 

The package contains whole beans, but Kicking Horse recommends using them for coarse grind brewing methods. Suggestions include drip coffee, pour over, French press, and cold brew.

Pricing can appear to be on the expensive side of things, but we can’t grudge it because of the quality. Still, it’s a decision you have to make for yourself. It’s a pretty good coffee, and I feel it’s worth the price tag.

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee, decaf
  • Blend of high-quality arabica beans from Central and South America
  • Taste notes of dark chocolate and brown sugar
  • Quality coffee with pricing to match
  • Certifications: USDA Organic, Canada Organic, Fair Trade
  • Dark roast

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Best Organic Decaf Coffee — The Responsible Treat

Cafe Don Pablo Subtle Earth Organic Decaf

Cafe Don Pablo Subtle Earth Organic Decaf

There is no dearth of high-quality organic decaf coffee in the market. Several of them show up on this list. However, if the organic decaf were to be the sole criterion, Cafe Don Pablo Subtle Earth would be the pick for best organic decaf coffee

It tastes great and can take on any comparable “regular” coffee in its niche. What really sets it apart is the ability to retain flavor of the coffee, even with the decaf process involved. 

Plus, even with several certifications and requirements, the price of this coffee is remarkably affordable. Well, it’s not cheap, but it doesn’t reach for the sky as several gourmet and organic coffees do.

The coffee is naturally low on acidity, but like several Central American coffees, it surprises with the complexity of flavor. Cafe Don Pablo’s Subtle Earth coffee originates in Honduras and is decaffeinated through the Swiss Water Process.

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee from Honduras, decaf
  • Velvety body with complex flavor
  • Rich and chocolaty taste notes
  • Certifications: USDA Organic
  • Medium-dark roast

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Mayorga Organics Café Cubano

Mayorga Organics Café Cubano

Packaging for Mayorga Organics has the classic, comforting look that makes it appear like it has been around since forever. Founded in 1997, it does have a decent history, but it’s not as ancient as I would have liked to believe. Anyways, age aside, what we’re really interested in is the coffee.

And Mayorga Organics Café Cubano doesn’t disappoint! This is a great organic coffee that carries along several goodies. 

Apart from great taste and flavor, the coffee also addresses ethical buying, fair trade, non-GMO, and similar issues. In fact, it is possible to trace every bag to the farm where the coffee was sourced. Pretty cool, huh. In case you were wondering, it uses the Swiss Water Process for decaf.

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee, decaf
  • Smooth body with hints of vanilla and a sweet, syrupy smokiness
  • Certifications: USDA Organic, non-GMO verified, Direct Trade, Kosher
  • Good value for money
  • Dark roast

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Best Decaf Cold Brew — Coffee Perfect For Summer

CB – Decaffeinated Cold Brew Grind

CB - Decaffeinated Cold Brew Grind

If you’re looking for something exclusively for cold brew, the CB – Decaffeinated Cold Brew Grind is where the action is. The package is a blend made from medium roast beans in a coarse grind. It’s a setting made suitable for a cold brew.

Roasters ChosenBean says the decaf has been achieved through the Swiss Water Process. Apparently, the beans also share taste notes of baker’s chocolate and mild orange, though I didn’t quite feel them. The coffee chosen is organic and fair trade.

Highlights

  • Coarse ground coffee blend
  • Decaf with Swiss Water method
  • Excellent for cold brew
  • Possible taste notes of baker’s chocolate and mild orange
  • Medium roast

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Stone Street Coffee Decaf Whole Bean Coffee Central American Origin

Stone Street Coffee Decaf Whole Bean Coffee Central American Origin

Stone Street Whole Bean Decaf has already made an appearance here as the editor’s choice for whole bean decaf. One of the reasons for that pick is the versatility of this blend to work with different brewing methods. 

Yes, that includes cold brew. It could very well be the best decaf cold brew, but the CB decaf ended up ahead by a hair. However, if you intend to put it to use beyond cold brew, this coffee has better value than the CB decaf. Speaking of value, its relatively high cost puts a damper on enjoying this coffee to the fullest. 

However, if you’re okay with the price, this gourmet blend of Central American beans is a treat to enjoy. These medium roast beans have an earthy and subtle profile to go along with their lovely aroma. Stone Street Decaf Whole Bean makes use of the Swiss Water method. The coffee is rainforest alliance certified.

Highlights

  • Blend of gourmet beans from Central America
  • Expensive
  • Decaffeinated using Swiss Water method
  • Versatile – excellent for cold brew and hot coffee
  • Earthy profile and great aroma
  • Certification: Rainforest alliance
  • Medium roast

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Decaf Espresso Beans — The Strong And The Wonderful

The Organic Coffee Co. Hurricane Espresso Decaf Whole Bean Coffee

The Organic Coffee Co Hurricane Espresso Decaf Whole Bean Coffee

The Organic Coffee Co’s Hurricane Espresso is the way we want our decaf espresso beans. We want a strong flavor and aroma from our espresso, and these whole beans deliver exactly that. Their dark color and oily exteriors make these beans a good choice for espresso. Grind them fine and let your trusty espresso maker do its job.

Hurricane Espresso Decaf uses beans in a medium dark roast. It’s an excellent setting for espresso, though you can of course put it to use for other brews as well. The beans are certified USDA organic and Kosher. 

They say they use water decaf for this coffee, though they seem to avoid explicitly mentioning Swiss Water decaf. It would seem the batches aren’t quite consistent to be specifically described with the decaf process, but that’s just conjecture.

Highlights

  • Excellent espresso roast whole beans
  • Bold, full-bodied brew
  • Excellent taste and aroma
  • Certification: USDA Organic, Kosher
  • Medium-Dark roast

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Lavazza Decaf Espresso Bean

Lavazza Decaf Espresso Bean

It wouldn’t be right to consider espresso roasts without looking into Italian brands. After all, they pretty much set the standards for espresso awesomeness! Lavazza Decaf Espresso Bean seems to make all the sense in the world.

These are dark, oily espresso beans in a very delicious and flavorful roast. The robust espresso comes with a rich crema, robust body, and inviting aroma. It’s everything a decaf espresso wants to be, and very likely more.

Those looking for ground coffee can consider the Lavazza Espresso Decaffeinato Ground Coffee Blend. It’s a fine-ground coffee best suited for espresso, but can be used in other coffee makers as well – provided they can work with the fine grind. So French press would be a no, but the Moka pot will brew this coffee fabulously.

Highlights

  • Whole beans espresso roast
  • Robust body, rich crema, and great aroma
  • Good value for money
  • Dark roast (espresso roast)

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San Francisco Bay Coffee Decaf Espresso Roast Whole Bean 

SAN FRANCISCO BAY Bay Coffee DECAF Espresso Roast Whole Bean Coffee

SF Bay Coffee’s decaf espresso roast goes deep into flavor profiles. This is a very dark roast, stopping just one step short of Italian roast. You’ll find taste notes of dark chocolate and smoky brown spice in this full-bodied. Brew.

The company claims that the beans are decaffeinated through a “natural water process”. We’d generally take it to mean Swiss Water process, but the terminology used is vague. Although the company names the water process in its communication, they somehow rarely do it on the packages.

Highlights

  • Whole bean espresso roast decaf coffee
  • Taste notes of dark chocolate and smoky brown spice
  • Central American beans of quality bourbon, caturra, and parainema varietals
  • Dark roast

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Best Supermarket Decaf Coffee And Popular Good Value Choices

Folgers Classic Decaf Medium Roast Ground Coffee

Folgers Classic Decaf Medium Roast Ground Coffee

Folgers decaf is the editor’s choice for decaf coffee. The medium roast coffee is great value for money and an enjoyable coffee for the taste buds. There are gourmet coffees that may present notes and features better than Folgers Classic Decaf Medium Roast coffee. However, they can’t really beat it in value.

Good value and good taste are highlights of this decaf. A fresh aroma and enjoyable flavor put this offering amongst the best decaf coffee options available. 

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of arabica and Robusta beans sourced from all over the world
  • Excellent value for money
  • Good taste and aroma
  • Medium roast

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Illy Coffee Decaffeinated Ground Coffee

Illy Coffee Decaffeinated Ground Coffee

A classy taste and smooth brew are the strong points of Illy Coffee Decaffeinated Ground Coffee. This finely ground coffee is packed in nitrogen in a pressurized can to keep the flavor and aroma intact. There’s more to be said about their packaging. It looks quite elegant and makes the package feel a bit more special.

Illy decaf is a blend of coffee beans sourced from all over the world, though they only use arabica beans. It’s a delicious coffee with a balanced flavor and a great aroma. I’d consider the cost and value for money a downside here – this coffee is priced high. If you enjoy quality decaf, this might very well be worth it.

Highlights

  • Fine ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of arabica beans sourced from all over the globe
  • Smooth coffee with good flavor and aroma
  • Not exactly expensive, but seems priced higher than what it should be
  • Medium roast coffee

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Kirkland Decaf Coffee Signature Colombian Dark Roast 

Kirkland Decaf Coffee Signature Colombian Dark Roast

Costco’s Kirkland decaf could very well be considered the best supermarket decaf coffee available. It pretty much takes to the gourmet side of things by entirely using Colombian beans for this offering. Of course, this Kirkland decaf coffee is a blend, and not entirely made from expensive gourmet beans from Colombia.

It’s an enjoyable and flavorful coffee with great taste and personality. It helps that the value offered is amazing, which makes this coffee a very likely pick for many customers. Good value, good quality, and good coffee – what’s not to like? 

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Bold, flavorful taste without feeling overwhelming
  • Blend of various beans
  • Excellent value for money
  • Dark roast

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Folgers Black Silk Decaf Dark Roast Ground Coffee

Folgers Black Silk Decaf Dark Roast Ground Coffee

Folgers decaf has already made the list as one of our top choices, but there’s always room for bolder, stronger coffee. That’s where Folgers Black Silk Decaf comes in. Rather, saunters in and claims its rightful place.

This blend is bold and feels strong. Plus, it’s smooth to drink and enjoy, and has a very inviting aroma. It goes great with hot coffee and it gets along famously with cold brew and iced coffee as well. 

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of beans sourced from all over the world
  • Exceptionally smooth with enjoyable aroma
  • Dark roast coffee

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Gevalia Decaf Coffee House Blend Ground Coffee

Gevalia Decaf Coffee House Blend Ground Coffee

Gevalia decaf coffee tries to reconcile the brand’s famed taste with a brew of decaf. It gets admirably close if not all the way there. It’s a ground coffee made by sourcing arabica beans from around the world. There’s a mix of dark roasted and medium roasted beans, but overall it sits on the medium roast side.

Gevalia says the coffee is 99.7% caffeine-free, which is a pretty good number to consider. The company says the coffee is Kosher, though there doesn’t seem to be a specific certification to that effect.

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of arabica beans
  • Enjoyable coffee with great aroma
  • Good value for money
  • Medium roast coffee

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Eight O’Clock Decaf Coffee Whole Bean, The Original Decaf

Eight O'Clock Whole Bean Coffee, The Original Decaf

Eight O’Clock Decaf Coffee is one of the best-recognized brands of decaf. The company calls it “The Original Decaf”. The coffee is made from a blend of arabica beans and focuses on taste notes as much as it does on removing caffeine.

As a result, we get a balanced, flavorful medium roast with an enticing aroma. It shows sweet and fruity taste notes that settle well and leave a pleasant aftertaste in the mouth. The brew is smooth and mild and tastes great. 

We can often think of how decaf coffee tastes different than the original. It’s somewhat true for this too. However, it has a pretty good taste and is enjoyable in its own right. It’s still possible to see the effect of the decaf process, but overall, the taste is fairly stable and enjoyable.

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of arabica coffee
  • Fruity and sweet taste notes
  • Excellent value for money
  • Medium roast coffee

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Maxwell House Decaf Coffee Original Medium Roast

Maxwell House Decaf Coffee Original Medium Roast

Maxwell House Decaf Coffee is another famous decaf that’s enjoyable and well-regarded for its good taste and value. The coffee is made from a blend of arabica and robusta beans to create a well-balanced medium roast. Maxwell has made the coffee available in a medium-fine grind, which is coarse enough to be used for drip coffee makers.

The coffee offers excellent value for money. The blend has a touch of flavorful boldness, which makes it all the more enjoyable. As a decaf, it doesn’t feel weak, instead, it feels strong and robust. Maxwell House decaf coffee is certified Kosher.

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Blend of arabica coffee
  • Excellent value for money
  • Robust taste and great aroma
  • Medium roast coffee

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Best Whole Bean Coffee On Amazon — The Decaf Leaders

Several recommendations on our list are top-quality whole bean decaf. For this section, the focus goes to the online retail giant for a look at the best whole bean coffee on Amazon.

AmazonFresh Decaf Colombia Whole Bean Coffee, Medium Roast

AmazonFresh Decaf Colombia Whole Bean Coffee, Medium Roast

Amazon’s brand gets to take the spotlight on this category. AmazonFresh Decaf Colombia Whole Bean Coffee takes the gourmet route to the top with a stunning decaf. Its name is descriptive enough – the coffee is arabica sourced entirely from Colombia. 

It’s worth noting that this isn’t necessarily (or entirely) the famed high-grown Colombian gourmet. Thankfully, it isn’t some low-quality bottom-of-the-pile pick either. Careful selection of the beans plays a big part in making this coffee so desirable and amazing. The value for money is a big plus too.

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee, decaf
  • Coffee beans are arabica sourced entirely from Colombia
  • Great value for money
  • Full-bodied brew with a smooth finish and lovely aroma
  • Medium roast

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Bulletproof Coffee The Original Whole Bean Decaf

Bulletproof Coffee The Original Whole Bean Decaf

Bulletproof’s “original roast” decaf is a medium roast made from a blend of Central American arabica coffee beans. The coffee touches quite a few points from taste notes to brew quality. 

Specified taste notes here run from cinnamon and chocolate to sweet plum and nectarine. That’s quite a range and combination! The decaf technique used for these beans is the Swiss Water Process.

This is an expensive coffee from the famed Bulletproof line. You can give it a try, even if you don’t have faith in the Bulletproof Diet.

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee, decaf
  • Arabica coffee beans sourced from Central America
  • Vibrant taste notes
  • Expensive, questionable value for money
  • Certifications: Rainforest Alliance
  • Medium roast

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Love Gourmet? You’ll Love This Decaf Kona Coffee

Royal Kona 100% Kona Coffee, Decaf

Royal Kona Coffee Decaf

Hailing from the Kona Districts of the Big Island of Hawaii, Kona coffee is an amazing, gourmet brew to enjoy. It’s one of the most sought-after brews for coffee lovers. The good news is, that it transforms readily into decaf Kona coffee. Flavors of gourmet goodness matched with quality decaf is exactly what we want.

Royal Kona fits that description to a tee. It maintains the sweet, fruity, and spicy notes of Kona to some degree, while giving up on the caffeine. The medium roast helps to bring the flavor forward and make it shine. They’ve used the Swiss Water Decaf process in a bid to keep the flavor intact.

Highlights

  • Ground coffee, decaf
  • Gourmet Kona coffee from Hawaii
  • Fruity and spicy taste notes
  • Expensive, but that’s to be expected
  • Medium roast

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Buddha’s Cup Single Origin Hawaiian Kona Coffee (Decaf)

Buddha’s Cup Single Origin Hawaiian Kona Coffee

Looking at this packaging and name reminds me of an interesting fact. The “fat Buddha” is not the same as Guatama Buddha, but a venerated monk named Budai

Anyways, back to the topic, this is a pretty interesting coffee. It shows off its Kona characteristics pretty well, but it is clear that the coffee has been processed. As in, its decaf origins and taste difference feature quite prominently in the brew. 

Still, perhaps thanks to the qualities of Kona coffee, it manages to taste fairly good and brews an enjoyable cup of coffee.

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee, decaf
  • Gourmet Kona coffee from Hawaii
  • Smooth coffee with an enjoyable aftertaste
  • Expensive
  • Medium-dark roast

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Swiss Water Process Decaf — The Gourmet Pick

Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC, Colombian Swiss Water Decaffeinated Coffee

Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC, Colombian Swiss Water Decaffeinated Coffee

Now that we’ve got Kona coffee covered, it’s perhaps time to take a look at another famous coffee growing region – Colombia. While we’re at it, let’s take it a step further and put Swiss Water Process decaf as a requirement too. Basically, the cream of the crop.

The top choice with these caveats would be the Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC, Colombian Swiss Water Decaffeinated Coffee. This high-grown coffee is sourced from coffee beans growing at altitudes of 4900-5500 feet. 

The high altitude leads to the creation of relatively larger, flavor-rich coffee beans that are prized for their taste. Top quality arabica coffee beans of the caturra varietal go into this coffee. As expected, the result is a divine taste with striking notes of honey and walnut.

Of course, the flavor has to be preserved as the coffee goes decaf! Which is why the Swiss Water Process decaf is the preferred way to go for this high-quality gourmet coffee. It is on the expensive side of things, but not unaffordable. If it fits your budget, definitely give this coffee a shot!

Highlights

  • Whole bean coffee, decaf
  • Gourmet coffee beans, high-grown Colombian beans
  • Taste notes of honey and walnut
  • Bold brew with a lovely body
  • Medium roast

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Flavored Decaf Coffee — Get Taste Notes Out Of The Subtle

Cameron’s Coffee Decaf Highlander Grog

Cameron's Coffee Decaf Highlander Grog

Cameron’s Coffee Decaf Highlander Grog is perhaps underrated. I find it to be invigorating and exciting as flavored decaf coffee goes, though they could work on the aroma. They make use of quality coffee beans in a light roast to bring out the flavor. However, there’s always room for improvement!

And they do this by adding a dash of flavors to go along natural flavors of the coffee. The Highlander Grog shows off touches of rum and butterscotch, with vanilla and bringing up the rear guard of this flavor bonanza. Highlander Grog coffee is smooth, enjoyable, and offers good value for money.

Highlights

  • Flavored ground coffee, decaf
  • Flavors of rum, butterscotch, with notes of vanilla and caramel
  • Excellent brew, but somewhat weak aroma
  • Light roast

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Lola Savannah Vermont Maple Nut Ground Coffee

Lola Savannah Vermont Maple Nut Ground Coffee

This decaf coffee has a touch of maple nut added to enhance its flavor and make it more delectable. It readily succeeds, and in the process also creates an irresistible aroma for the coffee cup. 

I like the fact that the flavor doesn’t overpower the coffee or be an overt synthetic addition. The flavor and the coffee blend well to create a pleasurable brew.

Highlights

  • Flavored ground coffee, decaf
  • Almonds and maple nut flavor
  • Good value for money
  • Enjoyable brew and aroma
  • Light roast

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Best Instant Decaf Coffee For The Quick Fix

Folgers Classic Decaf Instant Coffee

Folgers Classic Decaf Instant Coffee

Sometimes, all we want is a quick shot of coffee. That’s where instant coffee proves its usefulness. Folgers Classic Decaf is well worthy of being the best instant decaf coffee available. It has an enjoyable aroma and adds the delicious goodness of coffee in an instant. Well, minus the caffeine, of course!

Highlights

  • Instant coffee
  • Quick and easy to prepare
  • Tastes great and can stand up to regular brews

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Decaf K Cups Bring Convenience And Awesome Coffee To The Same Cup

Well, we’ve seen several top quality decaf coffee options on here. However, let’s not downplay the popularity of single-serve systems and K cups. Here’s a selection of amazing decaf K cups that show everything that’s right with coffee. 

My suggestion is to take the smart road, and get into the groove with reusable K cups. With this option, you get to enjoy any coffee you like and save a bundle of money. Even if you’re using just a couple of cups every day, the savings add up.

All that aside, it would be wrong to dismiss the usefulness and general convenience of K cups. So, here are the best decaf coffee K cups to consider.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Dark Magic Decaf

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Dark Magic Decaf

Green Mountain’s Dark Magic Decaf is a truly remarkable blend. It’s decaf through and through, but the brew feels bold and strong, like a regular bold, dark roast. No wonder this K cup is the editor’s choice for this category. 

The extra bold decaf blend has slightly more coffee inside the cup as compared to regular K cups. Adding more coffee is the usual route for bold K cups to take. However, the ability of this cup to deliver a brew that’s almost identical in taste and flavor to a regular K cup makes it remarkable. 

These Green Mountain K cups are Kosher and compatible with all Keurig K-Cup coffee machines.

Highlights

  • K cup coffee
  • Deep and intense with a bold finish
  • Certifications: Orthodox Union Kosher
  • Dark roast

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Illy K-Cup Pods Decaffeinated Classico

Illy K-Cup Pods Decaffeinated Classico

This K cup puts the well-known and beloved taste of classic Illy decaf in a K cup. It should be no surprise that there is no loss of quality. This is every bit as enjoyable as the original. 

Illy K-Cup Pods Decaffeinated Classico is a medium roast decaf blend made with quality beans sourced from all over the world. It brews a balanced cup with taste notes of caramel and chocolate.

Highlights

  • K cup decaf coffee
  • Smooth coffee with taste notes of caramel and chocolate
  • Expensive 
  • Certifications: Orthodox Union Kosher
  • Medium roast

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What Does Decaf Mean?

To put it simply, decaf is short for decaffeinated coffee. As the name implies, this is the coffee from which caffeine has been removed. The process generally involves the use of water, organic solvents, or carbon dioxide. The results can vary with the process, but for a coffee to be considered decaf, at least 97% of the caffeine should be removed.

How Is Decaf Coffee Made?

The Famous Swiss Water Decaf

Those looking for decaf coffee will often run into the term Swiss water decaf. Sounds pretty exotic, doesn’t it? The name would lead us to imagine that the coffee is processed through some exotic Swiss water channel that removes the caffeine. Unfortunately, that isn’t true.

Swiss Water Decaf is a water decaf technique. The ‘Swiss’ in the name signifies the country of origin of this technique, not the water.

For the biggest share of top-of-the-line options, the answer to how is decaf coffee made is usually the Swiss Water Process.

The technique uses two components along with coffee beans to be decaffeinated. These are water and a caffeine-free green coffee extract. A continuous flow of water draws caffeine out from the caffeine beans and brings it to the green coffee extract.

When the process is done, the coffee beans can be 99.9% caffeine-free. These beans can now be dried so that they return to their original moisture level before being bagged/packaged.

The green coffee extract is now saturated with caffeine. It’s processed through activated charcoal to remove the caffeine. After this, the extract is ready to work with the next batch of coffee beans.

Advantages of Swiss Water Decaf include:

  • This is a chemical-free processing technique
  • The flavor and taste notes of coffee beans are not disturbed
  • Resultant coffee can be as high as 99.9% decaf

A criticism of this technique is that several batches of coffee beans can be used in the same solution. This causes the unique flavors of various beans to get mixed up. Additionally, there’s a chance of the flavors of beans being carried to the next batch. Most manufacturers take steps to minimize these problems.

A Quick Glance At Other Decaf Techniques

Other popular decaf techniques involve the use of organic solvents like ethyl acetate and methylene chloride. As an example, the ethyl acetate solution will be used to pull caffeine out from the coffee beans. In many cases, the ethyl acetate used is a byproduct of the fermentation of sugarcane.

For many of these processes, the caffeine extracted from the coffee beans is drawn into the solution. This caffeine may be extracted and be put to use for other purposes. In the Swiss Water Decaf process, the caffeine is no longer available for extraction.

Decaf methods are implemented on green coffee beans, prior to them being roasted.

It is worth pointing out that though many people see these as “chemical” extraction methods, they are safe. 

None of these methods threaten the safety or health of people consuming decaf coffee. Of course, safety standards have to be followed with all methods being used. Caffeine is water-soluble, so water is used in almost all decaf methods.

How Much Caffeine In A Cup Of Decaffeinated Coffee

Decaf coffee is not entirely free of caffeine, so what does decaf mean? It means that about 97% of the caffeine has been removed from the coffee bean. In some cases, this can go as high as 99.9%. So yes, there will always be a nominal amount of caffeine present even in decaf coffee.

Now that we understand that, let’s see how much caffeine is in a cup of decaffeinated coffee

In an average 8oz cup of decaf coffee, you can expect 2-7 mg of caffeine. In comparison, the average cup of brewed coffee can have about 95 mg caffeine. Caffeine in your cappuccino often is 64-128 mg, depending on whether it has a single or double shot of espresso.

As is evident, the amount of caffeine in decaf coffee is nominal. For reference, the FDA-recommended maximum daily caffeine intake for adults is 400mg. 

Does Caffeine Have A Taste / Does Decaf Coffee Taste Different?

Here’s the question on everyone’s mind, does decaf coffee taste different? Well, yes.

As we know, the decaf process utilizes a solvent. Whether it’s water or anything else, the solvent will act on the coffee bean to remove caffeine. However, it’s not just caffeine that the solvent reacts with. Other compounds and chemicals too will react with the solvent or get dissolved as caffeine does. 

All of this contributes to a change of taste in decaf coffee.

As the decaf process removes the caffeine and other substances, the complex flavors of coffee can undergo a change. Removal of caffeine affects the taste too. So does caffeine have a taste?

Caffeine tastes bitter with an alkaline and slightly soapy flavor. You already know this taste not just from coffee, but also from other products with caffeine like colas. 

When we remove caffeine, we essentially also remove this flavor and taste. So it is natural that decaf beans taste a bit different. 

However, the taste of coffee is altered through several means before it gets to the consumer. A substantial change comes with roasting the beans. Modern roasters and processes are so efficient that in many cases, you can have a tough time differentiating between regular and decaf coffee.

Health Benefits Of Decaf Coffee

Here’s the good news – decaf coffee has most of the health benefits of regular coffee intact. In case you weren’t sure, yes, coffee has a long list of health benefits that have been validated by scientific study

It is a common misconception that the health benefits (or problems) associated with coffee essentially relate to caffeine. There are several compounds and substances in coffee, and they work just fine without the presence of caffeine. 

So yes, the health benefits of decaf coffee are real and tangible. Generally speaking, they are quite similar to regular coffee, except where the benefits (or risks) are essentially dependent on caffeine.

Here’s a quick study.

Decaf Is Rich In Antioxidants

Quite like regular coffee, decaf coffee is rich in antioxidants. In fact, coffee is often the largest source of antioxidants in the Western diet! Regular and decaf coffee usually contain a similar amount of antioxidants. However, in some cases, decaf may have up to 15% lower antioxidants.

Decaf Coffee Has Nutrients

Each cup of decaf (and regular) coffee has a substantial amount of nutrients. You can get up to 2.4% of your recommended daily intake of magnesium from a cup of coffee. Similarly, each cup offers 2.5% of the daily recommended amount for niacin (vitamin B3). These aren’t small numbers – and they add up quickly with each cup.

Polyphenols – Chlorogenic Acid And Lignans

Decaf is rich in polyphenols like chlorogenic acid and lignans. These compounds play an important role in various body processes and help shield the body from various problems. 

Polyphenols help the body repair the damage received from ultraviolet rays. They’ve also shown to be helpful in the prevention of various health issues, including Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. One study also claims that coffee reduces the risk of premature death.

Reduced Risk Of Heartburn

Decaf is generally easier on the stomach as compared to regular coffee. People who have trouble with acid reflux or GERD certainly can appreciate decaf. Decaf is generally a better option than low-acid coffee.

Protection Against Neurodegenerative Diseases

Research suggests that coffee can protect brain neurons, and thus reduce the risk of diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. It is suggested that the presence of chlorogenic acid in coffee is a reason for better protection for the neurons.

Reduced Risk Of Rectal Cancer

Decaf is apparently extremely effective in preventing rectal cancer. According to research, having two cups of decaf every day can reduce the risk of rectal cancer by up to 48%!

Is Decaf Coffee Bad For You?

Decaf coffee doesn’t seem to present any risks worthy of specific mention. The FDA doesn’t have any specific warnings or advisories for decaf consumption. 

Some people believe that the chemical processes used in the decaffeination process can negatively affect the bean. There has been no proof to substantiate this claim. Even in case some potentially dangerous chemicals are present, they wouldn’t be able to reach the concentration that can be harmful.

If you’re still concerned, the smart move is to stick to well-known and high-quality brands that can be trusted. Avoid buying decaf coffee from random sources simply to save a few bucks.

Is Decaf Coffee A Diuretic?

Short answer, no. Decaf coffee is not a diuretic. It is generally expected that a caffeine intake in the neighborhood of 360mg can act as a diuretic. However, since it is rather impossible to reach that number with decaf, there’s no need to consider decaf a diuretic. 

Does Decaf Coffee Have Caffeine In It?

The decaffeination process doesn’t remove 100% caffeine from a bean. So yes, decaf coffee still has some caffeine left. However, the decaf process generally removes at least 97% of caffeine. Therefore, the amount left is negligible. 

As already discussed, an average cup of decaf has somewhere between 2-7mg of caffeine. So yes, there is a non-zero amount of caffeine in decaf. However, for practical purposes, it is irrelevant.

Pros And Cons Of Decaf Coffee 

As we know, the pros and cons of decaf coffee are largely the same, except in matters where caffeine is explicitly involved. So, here’s a quick look without going deep into detail.

Pros

  • No caffeine problems or jitters
  • Reduced risk of heartburn
  • Protection against neurodegenerative diseases
  • Rich in antioxidants and nutrients
  • Reduced risk of rectal cancer
  • Reduced risk of diabetes type 2

Cons

  • No kick or pick-me-up effect of coffee
  • In some instances, decaf coffee may not taste the same as regular coffee. If this happens, it is usually a turn for the worse (where taste is concerned)

It’s worth noting that for the most part, the benefits of decaf coffee are a subset of the benefits of coffee in general. However, those with heartburn or caffeine jitters can definitely benefit from decaf coffee.

Putting The Lid On The Decaf

Decaf coffee is a good choice. There’s no reason to look at it as an inferior option. As this comprehensive guide on the best decaf coffee shows, quality decaf doesn’t lag behind regular coffee. It’s pretty much on the same level in taste, flavor, and mouthfeel.

So set yourself free and enjoy a cup of decaf. If you’re not sure where to start, look at the extensive reviews and recommendations listed above!