If you’re an occasional coffee drinker, there’s a good chance you won’t have your own grinder. Because of this, you more than likely purchase pre-ground beans either from a grocery store or online.
However, you are also likely to have so many options it’s hard to figure out which grounds best suit your tastes. No two coffees are the same, with variations in grind size, roasting level, region, and a host of other elements to consider.
This guide will explore the best coarse ground coffee options, explaining which brands are the best and what brewing methods you’ll need. It will also examine why the size of the grinds matters, how it affects the flavor, and which brewing methods are the best fit for coarse grounds. Finally, we will look at the equipment you’ll need for grinding coarse coffee to give you a detailed overview of all aspects of coarsely ground coffee.
If you like smooth-tasting cold brew or brew coffee using a French press, this guide will be particularly useful. That’s because each of these methods needs coarse grounds to extract the best flavors. We explain more in this best coffee buying guide.
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Why Is Coffee Grind Size So Important?
The grind size is pivotal to the coffee’s taste and selecting the correct grind size makes home brewing easier.
Here are some of the basics:
Finely ground coffee beans extract more quickly than coarse grinds because of the greater total surface area yet smaller surface area of each grain. Meanwhile, the contact surface area of coarse grounds is smaller, meaning extracting the flavor from them is more difficult.
After you have got to grips with this, it becomes clear why finer coffee grounds are better for methods that employ a shorter brewing time, while coarse grounds work best for slower extractions.
A French press won’t produce a good-tasting coffee with espresso coffee grounds for this reason. The taste will be unpleasantly bitter and leave the mesh filter clogged. Similarly, coarse grounds won’t allow for a high-quality espresso shot as the coffee will be sour, under-extracted, and weak.
Tips: Correct grind size doesn’t mean a particular size. Instead, it refers to a range. With pre-ground coffee, your options are limited. However, if you use a burr grinder to grind your beans, you can alter the grind size. Indeed, some grinders have over 40 grind sizes for tweaking. There is a margin for error for home brewing methods such as cold brew or French press. Provided the size you choose is within a specific range, you’ll get a high-quality cup of coffee. However, espresso requires a far more precise grind size.
We discussed the coffee grind sizes in details in another article: Coffee Grind Size Chart For All Brewing Methods. You’ll know exactly which grind size to use for your coffee brewer.
What Is Coarse Ground Coffee Best For?
We’ve established that the grind size affects flavor due to the coffee’s extraction time and surface area. Therefore, we know why coarse grounds work best in brewing methods that require a longer time to brew for maximum extraction.
Here are the most popular methods of brewing with coarse grounds:
Cold brew coffee is popular with many coffee enthusiasts, but the length of time needed to brew it can be an issue. That’s because cold brewing requires a slow extraction of between 12 and 24 hours. The good thing is you only need a French press or a mason jar, and it’s an easy way to brew coffee at home.
Add some coarse ground coffee to a large chamber or cold or room temperature water, and leave the mixture for a minimum of 12 hours (depending on the coarseness, we aim for between 16 and 24 hours). Then, filter the grounds, and you will have smooth and beautifully balanced coffee.
Filtration and a considerable steeping time are required, and coarse grounds are perfect for this.
An immersion brewing process is required for French Press. It is well-liked for several reasons. These include its affordability, simplicity, and the full-bodied coffee it produces.
Add your grounds to a brew chamber and pour in some hot water. Allow the water to interact with the grounds and steep for four minutes. Finally, press the plunger (generally with a fine mesh and made from stainless steel) to separate the grounds from the coffee.
Hot water can speed up coffee extraction, so it’s nowhere near as slow as cold brew. Although you only need to steep French press for four minutes, we leave it for eight minutes for the most optimal extraction.
It takes longer to extract French press than drip coffee, espresso, or pour-over, and there’s also filtration in the process.
You can also brew French press with a medium grind size by altering the brewing time. However, coarse grounds are the recommended size and offer a more convenient way of making French press.
Percolator coffee is not as popular as it used to be. However, it is still a reliable stovetop brewing method and is an excellent option while camping.
When using a percolator, medium-coarse grounds are best as the water filters through them several times. If you use too fine grounds, they can be easily over-extracted and leave the coffee far too bitter. Also, as with the French press method, you run the risk of leaving silt in the coffee if the grounds are too small to filter it out.
A well as the brewing methods we’ve detailed, coarse grounds are also ideal for other methods, including some AeroPress recipes and cowboy coffee. We have detailed 20 brewing methods in another article. In that guide, you will find instructions including the brew time required for each additional method.
Top 8 Coarse Ground Coffees
We live through an abundant era in the history of coffee, as more people than ever are learning about the coffee they drink and the many brewing methods.
Roasters are knowledgeable about the needs of their customers and have perfected blends for a variety of brewing methods, and offer different sizes of ground coffee.
While having plenty of choices is, naturally, a great thing, it can create problems in deciding on your ideal grounds. The following list should help make that process easier.
Some of the ground coffee choices may have “French press” or “Cold Brew” in their names. However, that doesn’t mean you can only use them with one brewing method. As long as the grind size is correct, you can use them for either, and you’ll have good results.
1.Stone Street Coffee Cold Brew Reserve, Coarse Ground
This is a Colombian Supremo single-origin coffee. It is marketed as a cold brew. However, we also like it for brewing cold brew.
This coffee is dark roasted. However, it will deliver a smooth, clean, low-acid coffee. A big reason for Stone Street’s consistency is that the company only roasts small batches at a time. If you use these grounds for cold brew, the taste will be exceptionally smooth.
The 100% coarse Arabica grounds are ideal for lengthy extraction. The roaster, based in the New York borough of Brooklyn, is committed to ethical relations with the grower, while the coffee beans are fair trade.
2.PRIMOS French Press Specialty Coffee
These beans originate from a fourth-generation Nicaraguan family. The roaster commits to sustainability. It’s also direct-trade coffee, meaning it’s sourced from the same family-owned lot each time.
The beans are grown at high altitudes beneath shady trees and hand-harvested. They are then dried naturally before being transported to Texas, where they’re roasted.
This single-origin coffee is medium roasted, leading to a well-balanced flavor. There are also medium-dark roast and dark roast options.
If you prefer a more citrusy and fruity taste, this French press coffee is a great option. It has low acidity and combines the medium body with the citrus flavor profile.
The beans are coarsely ground for the French press but are also ideal for cold brewing.
3.Bizzy Organic Cold Brew Coffee
Bizzy provides a fantastic cold brew coffee option. The company sources its Arabica beans from the South and Central American countries of Guatemala, Nicaragua, and Peru, and they offer an even and coarse grind.
The medium-roasted beans are USDA Organic Certified and for a smooth a sweet coffee with hints of hazelnut and caramel.
The beans work best with cold brew but are also fine with French press using hot water. The roaster recommends a 1:2 ratio of coffee to water with 18 hours of steeping for a cold brew concentrate.
Bizzy is serious about cold brew coffee. It has both coffee grounds and concentrates. Bizzy makes consistent grind sizes perfect for optimum extraction. In short, the company is extremely trustworthy for cold brew coffee.
The company also links up with local farmers to encourage environmental and social sustainability.
4.Gevalia Special Reserve Guatemala Medium Coffee
Gevalia Reserve coffee is grown in the highland valleys of Costa Rica in soil that is volcanic and mineral-enriched. The single-origin 100% Arabica beans are slow-roasted to retain their inherent smoothness. These beans are also Rainforest Alliance Certified and Kosher.
The beans are coarsely ground enough for French press, while for cold brew, if you leave it to steep for between 18 and 24 hours, you’ll have a coffee full of flavor that’s ready to drink. You can also try drip coffee with these grounds.
The roaster also has a Guatemalan coarse ground which is another good option.
5.Stone Cold Jo Cold Brew Coarse Ground Organic Coffee
For people who enjoy a more robust flavor, Stone Cold Jo could be your new favorite. The beans are 100% Arabica and organic and certified Kosher.
The roast has low acidity and is dark and smooth. Meanwhile, the taste is refreshing with hints of grape, chocolate, caramel, and toffee.
The roaster began making coffee at home for family and friends and is detail-oriented. From those small beginnings, the roaster expanded to become extremely popular. The coffee is chocolatey and silky and excellent, both hot or cold.
6.Cold Brew Lab Organic Dark Roast Colombian Supremo Coffee
Cold Brew Lab uses USDA-certified organic and pesticide-free 100% organic Colombian coffee.
While the name says the coffee is dark roasted, there are two color profiles. The coffee uses beans that are both dark and medium roasted for a full-bodied and smooth flavor. The ratio of dark and medium beans is perfect.
The company grinds the beans to a coarseness ideal for cold brewing and recommends a 4:1 coffee to water ratio with a cold brew steeping time of 12 to 15 hours – the suggested length of time for all dark cold brew blends. The coffee has low acidity, a little sweetness, a smooth flavor, and no bitterness.
7.Birch Glen Roasters
This company uses coffee exclusively from Colombia and roasts medium to dark beans for an extra smooth and full-bodied flavor.
If you enjoy flavored coffee, there are ten coarsely ground coffee blends. Among those are popular flavors, including French vanilla, hazelnut, caramel, and more obscure options like chocolate raspberry, banana, and Irish cream.
The size of the grounds is ideal for French press or cold brew methods.
8.Wandering Bear Extra Strong Organic Coarse Ground Coffee For Cold Brew
For lovers of extra-strong coffee, this is worth a try. The Brooklyn-based company dark roasts its coffee to offer a chocolate-flavored full-bodied brew.
The roaster grinds the coffee in several sizes for French press, cold brew, and even drip coffee. It suggests a 1:3 coffee to water and a steeping time between 12 and 24 hours in a fridge for cold brew.
Whether you brew the coffee cold or hot, the flavor will be robust without any bitterness.
How To Grind Coffee Beans Coarsely At Home
If You Have A Burr Coffee Grinder
Having a burr grinder is ideal. That’s because you can alter the grind size. However, once you place your beans in the grinder, the question is, which is the best grind size to use?
Depending on the grinder you have will determine how easy that is to answer. Some only have three to six settings, while others have over 30. The greater the number of options you have available to you, the harder the decision will be.
We suggest reading the manual as some brands will recommend the setting needed for different brewing methods.
If you don’t have the manual, start in the middle and tweak from there. Grind your beans, then either go finer or more coarse according to your preference.
If You Have A Blade Grinder
Blade grinders are not as precise at chopping beans as burr grinders. Also, they don’t allow you to choose a grind size. Neither will the grind be as consistent as that provided by a good burr grinder. This means that your beans will be a mixture of coarse and fine grounds more often than not.
However, there is a way to improve this outcome. When using a blade grinder or food processor to grind your beans, you can grind then pause and give it a shake to get a better consistency. You can also use a kitchen sieve. Filtering can dramatically improve both the taste and flavor of the coffee.
Immersion brewing methods, including cold brewing and French press offer a margin for error, but if you grind the beans too finely there will still be a nasty taste and hassle while filtering.
It’s never a bad thing to have plenty of options when brewing coffee at home. Whether you are an amateur or a professional, or if you have or don’t have a coffee grinder or machine, there are always means of brewing premium quality coffee.
Being aware of the grind size you need for your particular brewing method is one of the most important elements of making a great cup of coffee.
Thankfully, the companies outlined in this guide have the decent coffee grinders and expertise to create the best grounds for your requirements. Purchasing pre-ground coffee beans online has never been easier. Another option is to ask the barista at your local coffee shop to grind some beans to the grind size you need.
The majority of the beans we have highlighted in this article are particularly good for cold brew because the coarsely ground beans are perfect for a brewing method that requires a lengthy immersion time. However, they are also very suitable for the hot water brewing method of French press.
If you still can’t decide which is the best brand of coarsely ground coffee to try, we suggest starting with Stone Cold Jo, Bizzy, and Stone Street as they have outstanding reputations, meaning they won’t let you down. Once you’ve tried those, the other brands we’ve mentioned in this article are well worth exploring.
Having great beans to hand is only one of the elements you need. There are many other factors in brewing high-quality coffee. Elsewhere on this website, you will find detailed guides to take you through all parts of the process, so we recommend looking at them to help you as much as possible.
However, where it comes to coarsely ground beans, we hope this article has given you the information and inspiration you need to begin making fantastic home-brewed cold brew or French press coffee.