It was not until 20 years ago that we saw the development of the light roast coffee bean and its introduction into grocery stores and specialty shops. Light roast coffee is more acidic and offers a smoother taste than traditional dark roasts. It has quickly grown in popularity among those who desire more nuanced flavors.
A light roast coffee is not roasted for as long and contains a higher concentration of oils than its dark counterpart, making it easier to extract that bold flavor into a delicious cup of coffee.
The coffee scene is ever-evolving, and people want lighter roast coffees with more delicate flavors to enjoy each morning. This article hosts a selection of the best light roast coffee options out right now!
1. Real Good Coffee Company – Breakfast Blend Light Roast Coffee
- Brisk citrus taste with creamy milky notes
- Made with sustainably sourced 100% Arabica beans from Central and South America
- 100% recyclable packaging
- Over 30 years of experience in the industry
Real Good Coffee Company makes coffee for those that want to take their mornings seriously. Made with premium Arabica beans from Central and South America, this light roasted coffee is perfect for a crisp “woke up ready to get going” cup of Joe. The smooth flavor brings together a brisk citrus taste with creamy milky notes-perfect if you’re looking to enjoy breakfast blends even when it’s served ironically over lunch or dinner instead!
With over 30 years of experience in roasting in Seattle, Real Good Coffee Company makes sure that you will taste the best flavors of your morning cup.
Real Good Coffee Company uses 100% recyclable packaging to ensure that your light roast coffee is kept fresh all the way from the warehouse door to your doorstep. Their bag-in-box design keeps air out, sealing in those delicious coffee smells with one simple push of a button! This means no more stale whole beans when you get home after work for another cup.
Real Good Coffee Company has a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you’re not satisfied with your light roast, they will refund or replace it for you!
Check out our full Real Good Coffee Company review.
2. Subtle Earth Organic Coffee – Organic Arabica Light Roast Coffee
- A rich and chocolatey flavor with velvety body, and low acidity
- Certified organic100% Arabica coffee beans
- Light roast with a smooth, balanced flavor that works well black or with cream and sugar
Step into the tropics every morning with Subtle Earth Light Roast. A full-bodied coffee, easy on your stomach and with a delicious chocolate flavor that makes you feel like you’re already lounging beside the Honduran jungle. One sip is enough to make you want to collapse on the nearest beach chair and hang out all day!
Made with 100% Arabica beans, Subtle Earth’s coffee is certified organic so you know it has no pesticides or additives.
With over 30 years of experience in sourcing and creating award-winning coffees, Subtle Earth has perfected their light roast beans so that they are guaranteed fresh! Each bag comes airtight sealed to lock in those delicate flavors until you’re ready to brew.
Light roast has a smooth, balanced flavor that works well with both cream and sugar, so no matter how you drink it, Subtle Earth’s light roast is the perfect way to wake up your mornings!
3. Caribou Coffee – Daybreak Morning Blend Light Roast Ground Coffee
- It has enough body and flavor to appeal to even dark roast fans
- It has the classic Seattle coffee shop flavor without being too bitter or acidic – it’s smooth and easy drinking
- It’s Rainforest Alliance Certified, which ensures the welfare of animals in farmed product supply chains
Caribou Coffee prides itself on its roasts and its love for fresh coffee. Through taste tests, Caribou Coffee claims they were able to create a light roast blend that was elevated in flavor but not too heavy in body. And it’s Rainforest Alliance Certified, ensuring the welfare of animals in farmed product supply chains.
It’s a light, bright, creamy coffee with enough body and flavor to appeal to even dark roast fans. It’s also one of the most affordable light roast options out there, but still with great taste.
It’s got that classic Seattle coffee shop flavor without being too bitter or acidic – it’s smooth and easy drinking even though it has some bite to it. It feels like one of those “value” coffees where you drink it every day.
4. Lifeboost Organic Light Roast Coffee
- Low acid whole bean coffee for stomach relief and dental protection
- Delicious, ethically sourced coffee beans grown in the mountains of Nicaragua
- Organic variety for reduced exposure to toxins
- Award-winning flavor that gets customers hooked on Lifeboost Coffee
Lifeboost Organic Whole Bean Coffee is a delicious, ethically sourced coffee. The coffee beans are sun-dried and spring water washed! Lifeboost Single Origin Coffee is shade-grown at a high altitude in the mountains of Nicaragua.
Low Acid Whole Bean Coffee Light Roast. The coffee beans are all USDA Certified Organic and 3rd Party Tested for mycotoxins, heavy metals, pesticides, and 400 other toxins. The 30 Day Money-Back Guarantee reassures customers they are getting a premium product.
Lifeboost Coffee Light Roast is the perfect coffee for people with sensitive stomachs or who need to increase their caffeine intake without increasing acid reflux. Versatile enough for most drinkers who want a smooth cup with no bitter aftertaste. Beneficial for your health with a flavor that makes your taste buds happy. The farms also provide natural bird habitats with shade-grown coffee plants.
5. Volcanica – Organic Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Light Roast Coffee
- The signature flavor profile is perfect for those who want to try something new
- It tends to be medium bodied, brilliantly acidic, containing rough fruity tones
Elevate your morning with this fresh-roasted Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee. Volcanica’s fairtrade, kosher certified, organic ground coffee is the perfect blend of fruitiness and acidity that wakes you up on any cloudy or rainy day. This lightly fruity cup has a sweet essence that will delight your senses first thing in the morning!
Volcanica Coffee began as a family business fifteen years ago by focusing on selling coffee from the most fertile regions in Costa Rica. Their coffee beans were from volcanic coffee growing regions and they provided them to businesses looking for a higher level of quality, giving consumers a better opportunity to find their perfect cup of coffee.
Grown in the shade of banana trees and guava shrubs, Yirgacheffe’s smooth, floral taste is like no other. For those seeking a light roast coffee but still want a rich taste that will please your senses, Volcanica Coffee’s light roast Ethiopian Yirgacheffe is smooth and floral, making it one of the most sought-after and delightful coffees!
Check out our review of Volcanica coffee.
6. Peet’s Coffee – Luminosa Breakfast Blend Light Roast Ground Coffee
- Sweet coffee with floral and fruit notes
- A blend that combines the best flavors to create a lighter, brighter cup of coffee
Once you have had a cup of Luminosa, it will feel natural for your eyes to grow brighter and your smile to become wider. This is because this light roast coffee has been handcrafted with 100% Arabica beans that will provide an unforgettable experience. With hints of passionflower and stone fruits, each sip will surprise you with its complexity and nuance.
It started with a coffee from the Huila region in Colombia’s highlands, where beans are cultivated over 1,500 feet and known for their smooth, sweet character. Then to Ethiopia, coffee’s birthplace, where unique varieties yield exquisite coffees with delicate aromas.
This great light roast for the morning, it’s made with 100% Arabica coffee beans, hand-roasted in small batches to achieve perfection through a rich flavor that no one can deny. Now you can enjoy meticulously sourced coffees of unparalleled complexity and nuance.
7. AmazonFresh – Direct Trade Rwanda Light Roast Coffee
- Bright and delicate flavor profile with citrus notes and mild floral hints
- Contains 100% Arabica coffee beans sourced from Rwanda, which are delicately balanced flavors, including subtle citrus notes complemented by gentle floral hints
You’ve never had a coffee quite like this one before. Made with 100% Arabica beans grown in Rwanda and purchased directly from the grower, the fresh taste is truly world-class. Expertly roasted to give it its bright complexity, the light roast will leave you feeling energized without weighing you down–perfect for those early morning meetings or afternoons spent perfecting presentations.
Made with a signature Light Roast Mix blend of delicately balanced flavors including delicate citrus notes complemented by mild floral hints. All your senses will be engaged as soon as you wake up each day. The best part? You can savor every sip knowing that direct trade means more money for the farmers and their families.
8. Starbucks – Veranda Blend Blonde Roast Coffee
- Veranda Blend is a lighter, gentler take on the Starbucks roast
- This coffee has subtle nuances of soft cocoa and lightly toasted nuts with a pleasant aroma without being too powerful, making it perfect for every day
Starbucks roasts are known for their perfect balance of flavor and body. Veranda Blend is a lighter, gentler take on the Starbucks roast. This coffee has subtle nuances of soft cocoa and lightly toasted nuts with a pleasant aroma without being too powerful, making it perfect for everyone.
One sip, and you’ll appreciate our dedication to quality & craftsmanship. Every satisfying cup is created from beans cultivated in Latin America and took more than 80 tries to perfect.
9. Fresh Roasted Coffee – Organic White Knight Light Roast Coffee
- Sustainably sourced single origin coffee
- Notes of wild bing cherries, cocoa, and a clean finish
White Knight light roast coffee beans are as delightful as they sound. If this is the first time you’re hearing about White Knight, prepare for a real treat!
This artisan blend uses only the finest single origin beans to create a cup of coffee that’s so bold without being overpowering. With notes of wild bing cherries, cocoa, and a clean finish, this bean will steal your heart! Don’t wait another second before making White Knight part of your daily routine.
Drink this light-hearted coffee with the morning sunlight streaming through windows or evening firelight. Just try not to be disappointed by any other brew afterward.
10. Don Pablo – Colombian Decaf Light Roast Coffee
- Mild body and low acidity for a smooth finish
- The Swiss Water Process removes 99.% of caffeine from coffee beans without sacrificing flavor or quality so you can enjoy your favorite drink worry-free
The decaf coffee for coffee lovers. Colombian Supremo coffee beans, naturally decaffeinated using the Swiss Water Process method, result in a mellow cup of java that resembles your favorite full-strength brews.
This mild, sweet, and rich blend has a medium body with a pleasant acidity and citrus notes to go along with the pure cocoa finish you crave because it delivers an authentic taste without any synthetic flavors or additives.
Unlike other chemical solvent ones, this innovative procedure offers all of the advantages with none of the drawbacks. Mild body and low acidity for a smooth finish. The Swiss Water Process removes 99.% of caffeine from coffee beans without sacrificing flavor or quality so you can enjoy your favorite drink worry-free.
What Does Light Roast Coffee Taste Like?
Light roast coffee taste are typically fruity, nutty, and bittersweet with notes of cocoa. Coffee experts say that lighter roasts have a richer flavor with more stringent acidity.
Because they roasted for less time, light roasts often retain more of the original flavors and unique elements, reflecting their natural qualities. Higher in acidity, these flavors are often described as fruitier, tangy, and even a bit floral.
Light roast coffee is best served black with no cream or sugar added. Those who prefer light roasts say they need less if any extra sweetener to taste the natural gourmet flavors in this style of coffee.
Choosing the Best Light Roast Coffee
Light roast coffee taste is widely varied because the roasting process has such a dramatic effect on taste. Dark roasts tend to be much stronger and richer than light roasts, with full bodied flavors and notes of chocolate or molasses. Light roast coffee, however, offers multilayered complexity, revealing traces of sweetness, fruit tanginess, or even a subtle floral aroma.
If you’re not sure which style is right for you and what tastes you enjoy the most, just let your palate decide. If you’re unsure if you want a light or dark roast, try them both. Start lighter with this style then venture into the dark side. Considering how different these two types of coffee can taste depending on the preparation method.
Each country has unique coffee flavors associated with it. Certain countries such as Colombia, Brazil, and Sumatra tend to offer flavors such as smoky and nuts whereas others such as Guatemala tend to offer fruit flavors.
Because light roasts maintain more of their original flavor, they are the best way to experience a coffee’s unique taste and flavors.
There are three ways coffee is processes: natural, washed, semi-washed. Each of these methods will affect the coffee’s flavor in different ways.
Natural process is done when fruit skin and pulp are left on which results in a natural sweetness, fruity body, balanced acidity, low cocoa notes with an earthy aroma. It may have slight fermentation flavors if it isn’t dried completely before being roasted.
Washed process is done when fruit skin and pulp are removed before it is dried. This process results in a chocolate body, balanced acidity, low cocoa notes with an earthy aroma. This method lends itself to more clean tasting notes in each cup of coffee.
Semi-washed or “pulp natural” happens when the coffee cherry is pulped before it is dried. Semi-washed process results in flavors of raisin, cocoa, smokey notes with high acidity and sweet aroma.
The intensity of a light roast coffee is determined by how long the beans are roasted and ranges from low to high, in comparison with other roasts. However, because there is such variety in this style it’s difficult to determine an exact measurement. For instance, Colombian coffees tend to be lighter than Ethiopian coffee roasts.
Light roast coffees tend to be less intense than dark roasted coffee and can even taste washed out if they’re too light or under-roasted. If you find a lighter style of coffee is tasting weak, try adding more beans to your grinder and experiment with the grind size until it tastes rich and full bodied.
Light Roast Coffee VS Dark Roast Coffee
The light roast coffee vs dark roast coffee debate is still ongoing in the coffee world. Light roasts tend to have a more acidic and fruity flavor, while dark roasts tend to be more earthy and chocolatey. This is because the beans are roasted for longer, so they lose moisture. Dark roasts are slighty less caffeinated compared to light roast coffee. Some people prefer lighter roasted coffees since it tastes brighter or lighter than darker roasted coffees. Others would rather have a darker roast due to its dense taste which makes it perfect for iced coffee or other specialty drinks.
Creating Light Roast Coffee Beans
Roasting coffee is a process of heating and roasting green coffee beans. There are different types of roasts that reflect on the chemical and physical changes that happen to the beans as they’re roasted.
Light roasts coffee keeps its caffeine level and flavor within a defined temperature range. It is roasted to between 350 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This means the coffee beans do not reach the second crack.
Beans go through several stages before they reach the first crack:
Green: as the first level where it retains its “virgin green essence”.
Yellow: A grassy smell will emit from the beans
Steam: The release of moisture and carbon dioxide
First Crack: cracks begin to emit from the end of the coffee bean which is caused by expanding gases within the cell structure as it heats up, releasing energy. This is also known as the “Cinnamon Roast”
How to Brew Light Roast Coffee
Light roast coffee can be brewed just like any other coffee roast. There are a few extra considerations, including the size and grind of your beans as well as water temperature and extraction time.
If you’re brewing the coffee with a pour over, Chemex, or French press then it’s recommended to grind your beans on slighty finer setting than you may use for darker roasts. The same goes for making a cold brew, a little finer will yield the best results when using light roasted coffee beans.
Coffee has been around for centuries, but it’s never tasted as good as it does today. Light roast coffee offers multilayered complexity, revealing traces of sweetness, fruit tanginess, or even a subtle floral flavors.
If you find yourself struggling to make the right decision about which type of coffee to buy next time you’re shopping at your local grocery store or want to order online, we recommend going with light roasted beans because they will offer more variation in taste and flavor. A lighter style may be just what you need if you’re looking for something unique.
From the list of the top ten best light roast coffee, my preference is the Real Good Company Breakfast Blend Light Roast. It’s light and silky and I could drink it every single day.
Get some great coffee gear to make the most of your new light roast coffee.