Can You Use Espresso Beans For Drip Coffee? (Expert Advice)

It's Monday, 6 AM, and it's time to get ready for work. With groggy eyes and stiff muscles, you reach for your coffee, but it's empty!

In a panic, you search your pantry, but all you come up with are espresso beans.

So can you use espresso beans for drip coffee? Yes! Let's explore drip-brewing coffee with espresso beans.

Espresso beans are versatile and can work for drip coffee.

Even though you may not get the balanced flavor drip coffee beans offer, it's entirely possible to brew a delicious regular cup of coffee with espresso beans.

In fact, you can use any bean with most brewing devices, including drip coffee makers. So, both espresso and drip coffee can be made from the same bean.

The only thing that sets a true espresso apart is how it's prepared and the fact that you use an espresso machine.

When it comes to coffee, every detail matters. It's not only about the beans' roasting process, but it's a combination of factors that contribute to an excellent cup.

Factors like grind size, brewing technique and time, and the brewing method play pivotal roles.

The primary distinction between ground drip coffee and espresso ground coffee lies in the grind size of the espresso bean.

With the right grind and technique, you can brew a rich, robust black coffee in your drip coffee maker that's sure to kickstart your day.

Coffee, in all its glorious forms, is both an art and a science. While espresso and black coffee share a bond in the coffee family, they're distant relatives.

So, while beans offer versatility, the brewing methods set them apart.

The next time you're pondering over your coffee choices, remember: it's not just about the beans but how you brew them.

espresso beans packed into a portafilter

Difference Between Espresso And Drip Coffee Beans

1. Flavor Profile

One of the main differences between espresso and drip coffee beans is the flavor profile.

When you try a dark roast authentic espresso bean, you'll experience a strong and rich flavor enhanced with hints of chocolate, caramel, and a touch of nuttiness.

These beans have a higher acidity, which adds a lively brightness to every sip.

On the other hand, I love drip coffee beans for their smooth and delightful taste.

They carry subtle hints of fruity delights and whispers of floral nuances, offering a more refined and delicate flavor experience.

2. Roast Level

The preparation of the whole beans is another difference.

When making espresso roast, a higher temperature and longer roasting time are used to enhance the body of the coffee while reducing its acidity.

Espresso beans are typically roasted darker, creating a rich, intense flavor and a beautiful crema.

Drip coffee beans are usually roasted to a medium or medium-dark level.

They hold onto the delicate flavors and aromas that make my morning cup of drip coffee a soothing and aromatic experience.

3. Grind Size

Espresso grounds are super fine, almost like powder. This finer grind size lets the water take its time, pulling out all those rich flavors and giving us that thick, dreamy crema on top.

Drip coffee grounds are like the laid-back cousin.

Unlike the espresso grind, they're chunkier, which means water zips right through, giving us a quicker brew and a lighter, easy-going cup of joe.

Espresso From Beans To Extracted Coffee

Pros & Cons of Using Espresso Beans For Drip Coffee


One of the biggest advantages of using espresso beans with the drip method is that it can produce a richer, more complex flavor than regular coffee beans.

Espresso beans are roasted longer, which helps unlock the oils and flavors contained within the bean.

They are also known for their bold and robust taste, which is good for people like me who prefer a stronger cup of coffee.

When extracted as a drip coffee, the result can be a more intense and flavorful cup.


One downside of using espresso beans for your morning drip is they could make a bitter cup of joe. Since espresso beans are roasted longer, your coffee can be bitter if not properly prepared.

Espresso beans are usually pricier than drip coffee beans.

This is because they are made from a blend of high-quality arabica beans and robusta beans sourced from various regions. As a result, using them to make drip coffee can be costly.

Espresso beans usually have higher caffeine content as well.

While some people (like me) may prefer that, it can be a problem for people sensitive to caffeine or who prefer a lower amount in their coffee.

How To Make Drip Coffee From Espresso Beans

Using espresso for your drip coffee is different from brewing espresso, but it’s still a pretty simple process. All you need to get started is an automatic drip coffee maker and a filter.

1. Start with Water

First, start with fresh, filtered water for the coffee grounds. Great water makes great coffee! Grab your favorite mug and pour 16 ounces into the reservoir of your drip machine.

2. Getting the Grounds Right

For a perfect brew, try to stick to a 1:15 ratio of coffee to water. That means you'll need about 32 grams (or roughly 1.1 ounces) of coffee for a delightful 16-ounce cup.

When grinding, aim for a texture that's between medium and coarse. If your grinder has 20 settings, with 20 being the coarsest, dial it down to around 15.

Coffee Beans In A Grinder

3. Time to Brew

Transfer your freshly ground coffee to the machine's filter basket lined with filter paper. By the way, using a paper filter is the healthiest way to brew![1]

Now just spread your coffee grounds evenly, hit the 'start' or 'brew' button on your coffee maker, and let the magic happen.

4. Sip and Savor

Once the brewing's done, pour your coffee into your mug. Before I sip, I always make sure to enjoy the aroma! Dark roasted coffee beans have an intense nutty or chocolatey scent.

Now take a sip and relish the rich flavors, especially if you use a top-tier machine with even water distribution. Cheers to a perfect cup that will rival even the best coffee shops!

Can You Use Espresso Beans For Other Brewing Methods?

Fortunately, espresso machines aren’t necessary, and you can use espresso beans for different types of brewing methods.

For French Press

It is possible to use espresso beans for French press coffee, but don't try to use your French press to make an espresso shot.

The mechanics of a French press don't allow for the high pressure required to make a perfect espresso.

The silver lining is that you're still in for a delightful coffee experience.

The French press is renowned for being a top choice when it comes to brewing specialty beans, ensuring a flavorful and aromatic cup every time.

Securing French Press Plunger

For Cold Brew Coffee

I love coffee, but I can't drink it hot in the summer. That's why I love cold brew, and using espresso beans for cold brew is an absolute delight.

Cold brew coffee is all about the slow extraction process, which can beautifully highlight the unique characteristics of espresso beans.

When these beans are steeped for an extended period in just enough water, the outcome is a creamy, aromatic, and highly stimulating cold brew.

The flavors are robust without being overwhelming, and the low acidity level is a hallmark of the cold brew process.

For Pour Over Coffee

Try using espresso beans for a rich and intense pour-over coffee experience.

The subtle bitterness that comes with pour over coffee can be truly delightful, adding depth and character to your coffee experience.

So, give it a try, and see if espresso beans might become your new go-to for the pour over method.

barista making pour over coffee

Alternatives To Using Espresso Beans For Drip Coffee

Blended Coffee

There are a few alternatives to using espresso beans for your drip coffee, including blended coffee.

Numerous coffee blends are carefully crafted for drip coffee lovers, resulting in a smoother and more well-balanced taste.

Experiment with different espresso blends to find one that suits your taste preferences.

Instant Coffee

Instant coffee is a swift, hassle-free substitute when you don’t have time for freshly brewed coffee.

Fortunately, the instant coffee game has leveled up. Nowadays, there are premium instant coffee brands that taste delightful, whether you're sipping it steaming hot or refreshingly cold.

Regular Coffee Beans

It might sound like a no-brainer, but don’t forget the charm of regular brewed coffee beans.

Regular coffee beans are the preferred choice because they consistently provide a delightful cup. They also offer an extensive range of options for brewing regular coffee.

Whether you're in the mood for light roasts, a balanced medium, or dark roasts with stronger flavors, regular coffee beans offer a spectrum of intense flavors to match your palate.

Choosing regular coffee beans will also save you some money. They are almost always cheaper than espresso beans but still offer great flavor.

They let you enjoy your coffee without breaking the bank.

Single-Origin Coffee Beans

I don't do this often, but if you're feeling daring with your morning coffee, you can try single-origin coffee beans.

These beans are sourced from specific regions and reflect the unique soil and climate where they were grown. This results in unparalleled flavor variations.

They're a tad pricier, but if you're truly passionate about your coffee, single-origin beans are a delightful splurge that promises a great cup of coffee.

Single-Origin Coffee Beans

Common Espresso Coffee Bean Questions

Can you use any coffee beans for espresso?

You can use any coffee beans for espresso as long as they have the right fine grind. Many coffee lovers prefer to use darker roast due to its stronger flavor.

Do espresso beans have more caffeine?

Espresso beans contain less caffeine than other types of coffee beans. Other bean types have more caffeine content because espresso beans are roasted for a longer period of time, which burns away a significant amount of caffeine.

What coffee grind is best for drip?

The best coffee grind for drip is medium-coarse. A coarser grind will result in a weak coffee, while one that is too fine will be bitter and over-extracted. A medium-coarse grind will give you a deliciously brewed cup of coffee.

What coffee grounds do I need for an espresso machine?

Any variety of tightly packed grounds can be used in an espresso machine to make espresso drinks. To use an espresso machine, just be sure your coffee is finely ground.

Which is stronger, drip or espresso?

Espresso drinks can be up to 8 times stronger than drip coffee. It depends on the recipe, preparation method, and the brewing process.

What is espresso in drip coffee called?

Espresso in drip coffee is called a red eye. If you want two shots of espresso in your coffee, you’ll order a black eye.

Can you make espresso with green coffee beans?

You can make espresso based drinks with green coffee beans. Remember, though, that green coffee beans can vary in acidity levels, processing methods, and other factors that may impact the overall quality of your coffee.

Can you eat espresso beans?

You can eat espresso coffee beans as a snack.[2] As a snack, espresso beans are often coated in chocolate. A dark roasted coffee bean tastes great and is softer and easier to eat than a light roast.

Final Words

The good news is that you can use espresso beans for drip coffee. Both drip coffee and espresso can be made from the same coffee beans.

Espresso beans in drip coffee can even offer richer flavors and a bold kick.

Using espresso beans for drip coffee can be a delightful revelation. It's all about embracing the rich, bold flavor they bring to the table and using the right grind.

Cheers to discovering the magic of espresso beans in your delicious cup of drip coffee!


Brandyn Shoemaker

Brandyn Shoemaker

Brandyn is a coffee lover and a content writer, in that order. When he isn't writing caffeine-fueled articles for small businesses and brands, he's exploring the U.S. with his family in their travel trailer.

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