There is a lot of terminology that gets used when talking about coffee and making sense of it all can be confusing at times.
This post will show you the differences between black coffee and normal coffee.
So, what is the difference between black coffee and normal coffee? Black coffee is brewed coffee that has had nothing added to it other than water. Normal coffee refers to any type of coffee drink.
There are actually a number of factors that can impact the taste of both black and normal coffee. There are also a number of different types of normal coffee that you can get.
Differences between black and normal coffee
Below, I will show the differences between black coffee and other types of coffee, how they are made, how they taste and what impacts the way that black coffee and other types of coffee taste.
Black coffee is coffee that has been brewed using only water and ground coffee with nothing else added to it.
Black coffee has a sweet taste that can also be strong or watery depending on how much water was used to make it.
If beans with a dark roast are used to make it and/or Robusta beans are used to make black coffee then it will often give it a slightly bitter taste.
Generally, Arabica beans are used to make black coffee since they are less bitter and they allow for the coffee to have a smoother taste.
How to make black coffee
There are a number of ways to make black coffee. Two of the more popular ways include using a french press to make it or to use the drip method.
A french press is a pot that has a plunger inside. To make black coffee using a French press you just need to put ground coffee and hot water inside of it and then to wait a few minutes, press the plunger down and pour out the coffee.
The advantages of using a french press are that they are normally not very expensive and they give you more control over the way that the black coffee tastes. If you want the coffee to be stronger then you can wait longer before pressing the plunger down. If you want it to be weaker then you can just press the plunger down sooner.
The French press that I would recommend the most would be this one.
To make black coffee using the drip method you put ground coffee into a paper filter located above a glass container, pour hot water into the filter and then to wait for the water to mix with the coffee and to drip down into the container below.
It is easy to make coffee using the drip method. However, it doesn’t give you a lot of control over the way that the coffee tastes which is why I prefer the French press method personally.
With the drip method and the French press, if the grind is too fine then it will often cause the black coffee to have a more bitter taste. This is because it will cause more of the coffee to mix with the water. You want some of the coffee to mix with the water but if too much mixes with it then it can give it a bitter taste.
Conversely, if the grind is not fine enough then it can result in the black coffee tasting weak and sometimes sour.
Drinks that are similar to black coffee
There are a number of drinks that are similar to black coffee such as:
Americano is where hot water is added to espresso. It has a stronger taste than black coffee but it tastes very similar.
Espresso is the mixture that you get when you push pressurized hot water through finely ground coffee. Espresso is very rich and slightly bitter. Espresso also has a Crema on top which is a foamy substance that is very bitter. By adding hot water on top of the espresso it helps to dissolve the Crema reducing the bitterness of Americano.
Lungo is where espresso is made using more water than usual. It is less rich than regular espresso but it is still stronger than black coffee.
- Long black
Long black is where espresso is added to hot water. By adding the espresso to hot water and not doing it the other way around it preserves the Crema giving the long black a slightly bitter taste.
Questions people ask about black coffee
Is black coffee fattening? No, it contains around 2 calories per cup. Black coffee is actually popular as a drink to have when dieting for this reason.
Does black coffee have caffeine? Yes black coffee contains caffeine.
Does black coffee have carbs? Black coffee does not contain many carbs. This is why it is a popular drink for people that are on the keto diet or other low carbs diets.
How is black coffee different to white coffee? White coffee is coffee that has been made using beans with a light roast. Black coffee is coffee that has not had anything added to it other than water. I have written more about how they differ in the past here.
Normal coffee refers to any type of brewed coffee. This means that it can be coffee that has had milk, sugar, cream or anything else added to it. This also means that black coffee is also a type of normal coffee.
Normal coffee will vary in the way that it tastes greatly depending on how it was made and what was added to it.
If milk is added then it will have a creamier taste, if sugar is added then it will be sweeter and if nothing is added then it will be black coffee with a slightly sweet taste.
Additionally, the type of beans used to make the coffee will have an impact on the way that it tastes.
If Robusta beans are used then it will give it a more bitter taste. If Arabica beans are used then it will give it a smoother taste which is why Arabica beans are normally used when making coffee and Robusta beans (or a blend) are used to make espresso with.
If the beans have a dark roast it will make the coffee taste more bitter and a light roast can make it taste slightly more sour.