If you’re someone who really enjoys making your own coffee at home, there’s a huge variety of beans you can try that will make the experience even better. However, if you don’t own a coffee grinder, or you don’t really enjoy the extra work, your options might be a bit more limited from the whole bean choices.
While we at Roast Coffee highly recommend using the freshest coffee possible for the best taste, it’s understandable if this isn’t always accessible.
At A Glance: Our Top 5 Picks for Ground Coffees
That’s why we’ve gathered some of the best-tasting ground coffee options from Lifeboost and Trade Coffee. With this list, you’re sure to find a cup of coffee as close to as fresh-tasting as you can get. If not, at least you can discover some talented roasters!
Quick Summary: The Best Tasting Ground Coffees
Our Top PickLifeboost Medium Roast
|Check Price →|
|Feast: Power and Glory Blend||Check Price →|
|Anodyne: Colombia La Pradera||Check Price →|
|Gimme! Kenya Kabngetuny||Check Price →|
|Dune: House Blend||Check Price →|
|Good Citizen: Finca Cedral Alto Natural||Check Price →|
|Verve: Vancouver Decaf||Check Price →|
|Common Voice: Terra||Check Price →|
|Necessary: Colombia||Check Price →|
|City of Saints: Denizen||Check Price →|
Why Ground Coffee is Second Best to Whole Bean
Though grounds are convenient, they don’t keep as long or maintain their freshness as well as whole-bean coffee. Because the coffee grounds are broken down, the oils and aromas are released and more easily exposed to the air, making them susceptible to spoiling or losing their rich flavor over a shorter amount of time.
To put it simply, in order to maintain freshness and a high-quality flavor, it’s important to not only buy whole-bean coffee but to also make sure it’s distributed as close to its roasting date as possible.
However, if you are insistent on buying pre-ground coffee, we recommend at least making sure you still get it as fresh as you can. That’s why our list of the best-tasting ground coffees is based on brand reputation, the quality of the beans, the flavor of the coffee, and the roast-to-shelf or delivery date.
These choices are primarily from Trade Coffee, a coffee subscription service that guarantees freshly roasted coffee from a large variety of roasteries.
The Best Ground Coffees to Enjoy
So, without further ado, here is our list of some of the best-tasting ground coffees for those who either don’t own a grinder or prefer to not grind their own beans.
Lifeboost Coffee Medium Roast
Lifeboost Medium Roast
The mountains of Nicaragua is where only the highest varieties of Arábica beans are grown. Our coffee is grown in the shade high in the mountains without pesticides or chemicals. The certified beans are hand-selected for purity, hand-washed, and sun-dried to remove harmful moisture content.
Hands down–Lifeboost Coffee’s Medium Roast is the healthiest coffee option on our list. Not only is it fair trade certified and USDA organic, but Lifeboost also goes above and beyond when it comes to ensuring that each batch of single-origin Nicaraguan coffee is of the highest quality possible.
For starters, all of Lifeboost’s beans are grown in the shades of the mountains of Nicaragua and are pesticide-free and bird-friendly. Once the beans are collected, they are washed in natural spring water and sun-dried without the use of harmful chemicals. Lifeboost also makes sure to lab-test their coffee beans for mycotoxins, heavy metals, and hundreds of other toxins before roasting.
This medium roast by Lifeboost is well-balanced with a medium body and extremely low acidity, making it easy on the stomach. With its rich, bold flavors of caramel and earthy/woody undertones, Lifeboost’s Medium Roast is excellent for brewing methods like the pour-over and French press.
Simply stated: if you’re looking for an all-around flavorful and well-rounded coffee with the added health benefits that often aren’t available with other ground coffee brands, Lifeboost is the answer you’ve been searching for.
Feast: Power and Glory Blend – Balanced and Fruity, Medium Roast
Feast: Power and Glory Blend
Feel the power of hazelnutty sweetness and a hefty body meet the glory of citrus aromatics and notes of fresh fruit.
The first option from Trade Coffee that we have on the list comes from Feast Coffee, a roaster located in Redding, CA. Feast celebrates the diversity of coffee and they source seasonally. They also roast their beans in a way that showcases the characteristics of each variety and region.
A fun fact about Feast is that they were a finalist at the 2019 Specialty Coffee Association design lab for the illustrative packaging they offer.
An Ethiopian coffee, the Power and Glory Blend from Feast has a heavy, round body and a sweet hazelnut taste, along with a citrus aroma. This coffee is washed and natural/dry processed and comes from the sub-regions of Narino, Antigua, and Sidama. Further tasting notes include nectarine, dark chocolate, nut, ripe fruit, and citrus, as well.
Anodyne: Colombia La Pradera – Sweet and Tart, Light-Medium Roast
Anodyne: Colombia La Pradera
Super fun and pleasantly balanced, this one features a cherry cola and grenadine sweetness with a splash of soft orange acidity.
The Anodyne Coffee Roasting Company, located in Milwaukee, WI, was founded in 1999 and is a locally owned, small-batch roaster. They pride themselves on making sure they produce an exact, exceptional roast every time.
The Colombia La Pradera roast is a well-balanced light-medium roast that features tasting notes of cherry cola, grenadine, caramel, licorice, citrus, and milk chocolate.
This coffee is washed and processed, comes from the sub-region of Santander, is produced by Hector and Oscar Daza, and comes from an elevation of 1,700. The Hacienda La Pradera is near the Chicamocha Canyon, which creates a microclimate perfect for coffee production and is the second-largest canyon in the world!
Gimme! Kenya Kabngetuny – Sweet and Tart, Medium Roast
Gimme! Kenya Kabngetuny
A dense, resinous sweetness that reminds us of blackcurrants and juicy red plums meets a pop of zippy lime acidity.
Gimme! Coffee is a roaster located in Ithaca, NY that considers itself a specialty coffee roaster/retailer. Founded in 2000, they work to produce great coffee through sustainable practices.
They earned Roast Magazine’s Macro Roaster of the Year award in 2013 and have a mission to find and reveal beautiful coffee through roasting while balancing nature, people, and profits.
The Kenya Kabngetuny blend is a fair trade choice that has dense sweetness with a bit of acidity. The tasting notes include berry fruit, ripe fruit, apricot, pink currant jam, sugar-coated citrus, and toasted coconut.
This coffee is washed processed, comes from the sub-region of Kericho County, is produced by Kangetuny FCS, and is grown at an elevation of 2,000. The Kabnetuny Famers Cooperative Society is a program that works to develop certified coffee from Kenya through hardworking farmers. They also focus on partnerships that promote women’s ownership of coffee farms.
Dune: House Blend – Sweet and Smooth, Medium Roast
Dune: House Blend
This excellently executed house blend is an absolute crowd-pleaser with tons of sweetness, a velvety smooth body, and subtle hints of fresh fruit.
A roastery located in Santa Barbara, CA, Dune Coffee has a mission to source the best coffee, roast it with care, and deliver it to the customer for them to enjoy. They work to support the producers that provide the delicious beans and never compromise the care of quality.
Not only is Dune named after the infamous Science Fiction novel, but the team also believes that specialty coffee should be accessible to everyone.
Dune’s House Blend is one that’s full of sweetness, a smooth body, and small hints of fresh fruit. The tasting notes for this bag of coffee include hazelnut, red apple, and brown sugar.
The House Blend is washed processed and defined as a rotating blend of seasonal coffees that are balanced, however, you will always find an apple-acidity and creamy malt taste.
Good Citizen: Finca Cedral Alto Natural – Funky and Fruity, Light Roast
Good Citizen: Finca Cedral Alto Natural
This coffee is fruity and delicious with notes of ripe kiwi, concord grape, and hints of cocoa, but it’s also farmed with innovative sustainable techniques like using permaculture and local microorganisms to naturally control pests and disease.
Good Citizen Coffee Co. is a roastery that got its start in Nashville, TN in 2018 and considers itself a lifestyle brand. They aim to connect with their customers, produce coffee that appeals to many different people, and advocate for biodiversity.
They have an initiative entitled Flora & Fauna, which allows them to pay an additional 5% to select coffee farmers. This investment was made for the production of healthy ecosystems for coffee producers and farms.
They work to help people understand the connection between soil health and the future of coffee. The company is built on sustainability, transparency, and quality coffee!
The Finca Cedral Alto Natural blend from Good Citizen is described as a fruity and delicious light roast. It’s farmed with sustainable techniques that use local microorganisms to naturally control pests and diseases. The tasting notes include ripe kiwi, concord grape, and dark chocolate.
This coffee is natural/dry processed, comes from the sub-region of Tarrazú, and is produced by Jorge Vasquéz Ureña. It’s also grown at an elevation of 1,750-2,000.
Verve: Vancouver Decaf – Sweet and Smooth, Medium Roast
Verve: Vancouver Decaf
Mellow out with an impressively complex coffee that sacrifices caffeine without abandoning flavor—rich, but sweet. A coffee lover’s decaf.
A popular Trade Coffee choice, Verve roasters in Santa Cruz, CA sources only the best coffee. They strongly focus on craft, quality, and relationships. They work on what they call “Farm-level” as well as “Streetlevel.”
Their Farm-level Initiative is how they source their coffees through a direct trade buying model. Verve especially strives to invest in coffee communities and their environments.
The Streetlevel of Verve’s work is where their coffee comes to life in their neighborhoods. They share the coffee with communities, give back to them, and celebrate the art and life of each.
A great decaf option, Verve’s Vancouver Decaf is a medium roast that’s described as complex and rich, but sweet. The tasting notes include honey, almond, cola, citrus, and sweet vanilla.
This decaf coffee is washed processed, comes from various sub-regions, has various producers, and is grown at an elevation of 1,900.
Common Voice: Terra – Roasty and Smoky, Dark Roast
Common Voice: Terra
Terra’s deep, dark chocolaty sweetness and kiss of roastiness pair beautifully with your milk of choice – its gentle orange acidity makes it just as delicious black.
The Common Voice Coffee Co. roastery in Nashville, TN is actually a company that was created by Good Citizen Coffee Co. They added Common Voice as an attempt to help bring specialty coffee to more people.
Cold-brew coffee can be a pain to make at home, especially when it comes to making sure that your coffee is ground to the correct size needed to brew adequately.
The cold brew blend from Common Voice, Terra, is a dark roast that’s deep and has a dark chocolate sweetness. The tasting notes also include toffee, earthy, roastiness, nut, and citrus.
This coffee is washed processed, comes from South and Central America, and has a deep, rich flavor.
Necessary: Colombia – Chocolatey and Sweet, Medium Roast
Chock-full of that nutty sweetness we love in a Colombian coffee, this perfectly balanced cup is poised to become your daily drinker.
Necessary Coffee, a roastery in Lancaster, PA, produces quality coffee that has approachable flavors and represents an investment in specialty coffee. They promote sustainable sourcing, skillful roasting, and great flavored coffee.
The same group of people that own Passenger Coffee also own Necessary Coffee, and they created Necessary to bridge the gap between high-quality coffee without a market and coffee drinkers that prefer rich and balanced coffee. Necessary also selects coffees that have accessible flavors, perfectly suited for a more developed roast profile.
The Colombia medium roast coffee from Necessary is described as being balanced with a nutty sweetness. The tasting notes include milk chocolate, ripe fruit, and toasted nuts.
This delicious bag of coffee is washed processed, comes from the sub-region of Suaza, Huila, is produced by Divino Niño and ASOCAFOR (Associations), and is grown at an elevation of 1,300-1,700. This is a single-origin blend that contains coffees with certain flavor profiles.
City of Saints: Denizen – Sweet and Smooth, Medium Roast
City of Saints: Denizen
Bold caramel and nut sweetness jump right out of the cup, yielding to a subtle fruitiness that rounds out a smooth, satisfying cup.
The City of Saints coffee roasting company, located in Brooklyn, NY, works hard to accomplish its goal of creating cafes and coffee partnerships that celebrate their communities. They value inclusiveness and open-mindedness and foster meaningful and sustainable relationships with their producing and trading partners.
City of Saints is a young roasting company with strong ambitions, named after the city of Harar in Ethiopia. They work with many different projects, importers, and merchants in order to offer coffee from many different regions.
The Denizen roast from City of Saints is a Guatemala and Ethiopia blend and a bold coffee with a hint of sweetness. The tasting notes include date, jasmine, caramel, nut, ripe fruit, and citrus.
This coffee is washed processed, comes from the sub-region of Antigua, Jimma, and is grown at an elevation of 1,600. It includes a seasonal pairing of coffees that form a juicy and bright flavor, perfect for both espresso and drip.
Before You Buy Ground Coffee
Before choosing your ideal pre-ground coffee, let’s break it down a bit–because there’s more to ground coffee than what meets the eye. Here are some things that you need to consider before committing to your next whole bag of coffee grounds.
Grind Size Matters
If you aren’t buying whole-bean coffee and grinding it on your own, then the size of the grounds themselves will influence how good (or bad) your final brew turns out to be.
For those who are new to the coffee world, the size of your coffee grounds determines what methods you can brew your coffee by, and how your coffee will taste once brewing is complete.
If you’re interested in reading the full breakdown of the different grind sizes, we’ve got all the answers to your coffee grind questions, here.
However, here’s a quick breakdown of what grind sizes work best for different brewing methods:
- Extra-Coarse: Cold brewing and cowboy coffee.
- Coarse to Medium-Coarse: French press and percolators.
- Medium: Pour-overs Chemex and other pour-over coffee brewing methods like the Hario V60.
- Fine: Espresso brewing.
- Extra Fine: Turkish coffee.
Ground Coffee vs Instant Coffee
It’s important to not confuse ground coffee with instant coffee. Though many instant coffees are often in ground form, they are NOT the same as pre-ground coffee.
Regular coffee grounds have the flavor extracted from them during the brewing process, while instant usually completely dissolves into the hot water used for brewing.
Final Thoughts on the Best Tasting Ground Coffees
Out of all of the different ground coffees out there to choose from, only a few can be thoroughly enjoyed without any faults or flaws. The convenience of ground coffee makes for efficient brewing and delicious coffee that will satisfy even the pickiest coffee lover’s taste buds.
Though ground coffee isn’t the first choice of every coffee aficionado, it will curve the cravings of even the pickiest coffee connoisseurs.
So have fun experimenting with these ground coffee roasts, and as always;