Decaf coffee gives you the excellent taste of coffee that’s well-known and loved, but without the caffeine, which can cause nervousness, jitters, and insomnia.
Here are the 7 best decaf coffee beans of 2021:
- Best Overall: Lifeboost Medium Roast Decaf Coffee
- Best Value: Volcanica Coffee Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Decaf
- Best Kona: Koa Coffee Swiss Water Decaf Whole Bean 100% Kona
- Best All-Day: Volcanica Coffee House Blend Decaf Coffee
- Best Low-Acid: Volcanica Coffee Sumatra Mandheling Decaf
- Best Caffeine Flavor: Volcanica Coffee Colombian Decaf
- Best High-End: Volcanica Coffee Kona Decaf Coffee
We have tested a wide range of decaf coffee beans, and these are simply the best! Keep reading for the full review of our top recommendations for 2021.
1. Best Overall: Lifeboost Medium Roast Decaf Coffee
Even though you’ve chosen to drink decaffeinated coffee, it doesn’t mean that you should compromise on taste, richness, or roast quality.
Lifeboost offers the discerning coffee lover a well-regarded decaf coffee bean with all the top caffeinated coffee elements: a delicious flavor profile, full-bodied taste, and pleasant fruity notes.
Like all decaffeinated coffee in the Lifeboost brand, it’s very well-priced and made according to the Swiss Water method (meaning no harmful chemicals were used when removing the caffeine).
We believe that Lifeboost Medium Roast Decaf Coffee is the best overall decaf coffee bean.
- It’s a good coffee to provide for an office environment or a crowd. Its balanced and well-rounded, sweet taste with caramel and cocoa flavor tones make it popular with most people.
- Made only from Arabica beans, which have a smoother and sweeter taste than its cheaper counterpart (Robusta beans).
- Chemical-free with no pesticides used on coffee plants, decaffeinated via the Swiss water method.
- It’s a gourmet decaf coffee bean due to the slow ripening process and sun ripening.
- Medium to low acidity, giving it a smooth taste without harsh bitterness.
- Not a cost-effective decaf coffee bean at just under $35 for a 12-ounce bag, but well worth it if quality is important to you.
- Its light, smooth taste may not appeal to those who enjoy dark roast coffee beans.
- It can taste a bit weak and watery if made with a French press, but tastes just fine if you use a regular coffee maker.
Bottom line: Lifeboost’s medium roast decaf coffee beans are gentle on the stomach due to their low acidity, and the delicious flavor profile makes it appealing to a wide range of coffee drinkers.
2. Best Value: Volcanica Coffee Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Decaf
Decaf coffee can sometimes be a little pricey, and if you’re on a budget, Volcanica Coffee Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Decaf Coffee offers you incredible value for money.
At just over $20 for a 16-ounce (453.59 g) bag, this decaf coffee bean is a veritable bargain if you consider the quality of the beans and the fact that the decaffeination process uses the Swiss water method.
Volcanica’s Ethiopian decaf coffee is only 5.1 on the pH scale, which, although not the lowest measurement, is still suitable for sensitive stomachs.
Taking your first sip of this decaf coffee is a treat for the senses: you are bombarded with the most exquisite notes of fruit, flowers, berries, and wine.
In addition to being a Fairtrade coffee, this one is also Kosher certified and grown in the famous Yirgacheffe coffee region in Ethiopia.
- This is a cost-effective decaf coffee bean option for those on a budget who still want to enjoy a good quality cup of decaf coffee.
- Exotic flavor profile providing unique notes of lemon, wine, blackberry, and blueberry.
- Decent acidity level at 5.1, making it acceptable for those suffering from GERD or stomach issues.
- This is a smooth-drinking coffee with a medium/light roast.
- It’s a lighter roast (despite the label) and might taste too weak for dark or medium roast lovers.
- The bag can be challenging to open and close again, and you might have to resort to storing it in a coffee canister.
- Beans are small and slightly hard, which can sometimes make the grinding process longer.
Bottom line: This Ethiopian coffee has an exotic yet smooth taste and is ideal for early morning coffee and for drinking later on in the day. With its lighter roast, it’s easy on the taste buds but might not appeal to fans of a darker roasted coffee bean.
3. Best Kona: Koa Coffee Swiss Water Decaf Whole Bean 100% Kona
Kona coffee is a popular variety that originates from the sloping coffee plantations in Mauna Loa and Hualalai in Hawaii.
Kona is one of the rarest types of coffee globally and, as such, is also one of the most expensive.
Koa Coffee’s delicious-tasting decaf Kona coffee comes in at $55 for only 1 pound (453.59 g), but if you consider that other Kona coffee varieties are similarly priced, this shouldn’t be an issue.
As with all their decaffeinated coffee beans, Koa uses the Swiss water method to remove the caffeine, so you don’t have to worry about unwanted chemicals in your coffee.
The Koa Coffee Swiss Water Decaf Kona Coffee beans have been grown on the Mauna Loa volcano’s slopes, giving it a uniquely smooth and slightly sweet taste.
- Best decaf alternative to caffeinated Kona coffee as the taste is hauntingly similar with a delightful, earthy flavor.
- It’s pricey, like all Kona coffee, but if you’ve been searching for a decaf Kona variety that tastes almost the same as the caffeinated version, this one is up there with the best!
- It can be combined with caffeinated Kona coffee for a low-caffeine option and to introduce an interesting flavor profile to your cup of coffee.
- The cost can be prohibitive as a 1-pound (453.59 g) bag will set you back $55. However, finding a decaf Kona coffee bean of such a good quality and amazing taste is difficult.
- The bags can be finicky and challenging for the elderly or disabled to open.
Bottom line: It’s rare to find a Kona coffee in decaffeinated form, and this product gives you the best of both worlds: the exquisite taste of Kona coffee without the caffeine!
4. Best All-Day: Volcanica Coffee House Blend Decaf Coffee
If you’re looking for an all-purpose decaf coffee bean that you can drink throughout the day, Volcanica Coffee House Blend Decaf Coffee should be one of your top considerations.
A definite crowd-pleaser, this popular blend is also perfect for the office coffee machine or for when you have guests.
This house blend decaf coffee bean is a clever combination of hand-selected coffee beans from Central and South America, and it boasts a full flavor palette of sugar, fruit, and mild spices.
- Mild enough to drink the whole day, even though it’s a mild roast coffee bean.
- It’s a reasonably-priced option at just under $18 for a 16-ounce (453.59 g) bag, making it affordable to enjoy as much as you like.
- Many customers feel that it tastes better than decaffeinated coffee, and this is probably due to the smooth and slightly creamy taste with notes of sugar, fruit, and spice.
- It may not be suitable if you enjoy a full-bodied roast and want a decaf coffee bean that’s very rich, robust, and smokey.
- Some customers need to use more coffee beans for brewing to give it a stronger taste.
Bottom line: Everyone has their own unique taste, and this is especially true for coffee. Volcanica’s house blend decaf coffee beans, however, are the closest you’ll get to a compromise when choosing a suitable coffee type for a group of people. You can’t go wrong with this blend, and it’s always a safe choice for everyone!
5. Best Low-Acid: Volcanica Coffee Sumatra Mandheling Decaf
If you suffer from acid reflux or GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease), your doctor may have advised you to stay away from caffeine and acidic coffee.
Volcanica Coffee Sumatra Mandheling Decaf Coffee may be a good option for you. It’s very low in acid and 99.9% free of caffeine, which is a double whammy as both caffeine and acidic substances can adversely affect your stomach.
As the name suggests, Volcanica’s famous Sumatra Mandheling Decaf Coffee comes from the Sumatra region of Indonesia.
This Mandheling coffee is rare as it originates from Mount Luser, where soil conditions are unique and have a high volcanic ash content.
These rare coffee-growing conditions give this coffee bean a unique and exotic taste profile: it’s fruity, rich, earthy, and has lemongrass notes. Another unique characteristic of this coffee type is the pleasant syrupy aftertaste that it leaves in your mouth.
- It’s very low in acid, making it a good option for GERD or acid reflux sufferers.
- It’s great for mixing with other coffee beans for a creative taste.
- It’s both fairtrade and Kosher certified, giving you peace of mind.
- Some customers feel that it’s too sweet and prefer a spicier and more robust flavor.
- It can give you a bit of a salty and bitter aftertaste, which isn’t noticeable by most customers.
Bottom line: If you’ve given up on coffee (even decaf) because it negatively affects your stomach, give this variety a chance because it’s extremely low in acid! The unique taste also makes this decaf coffee bean something quite special.
6. Best Caffeine Flavor: Volcanica Coffee Colombian Decaf
Are you looking for a good-quality decaf coffee bean that tastes very similar to caffeinated coffee?
Many coffee drinkers often complain that decaf coffee doesn’t taste anything like caffeinated. If this sounds like you and you have sensitive taste buds, Volcanica Coffee Colombian Decaf Coffee is a smooth-tasting coffee that tastes a lot like caffeinated coffee.
- It tastes very similar to caffeinated coffee, even for the most discerning coffee drinker.
- It has low acidity, so it’s ideal for acid reflux sufferers.
- The floral and nutty flavor notes create a full-bodied taste that’s very tasty and great for cold brews.
- As a medium roast decaf coffee bean, the taste may be too intense for those who prefer a lighter roast.
- Some customers have difficulty grinding the beans, resulting in more time and effort spent grinding.
Bottom line: Many people battle for years to find the perfect type of decaf coffee that tastes the same as (or very similar to) caffeinated coffee. Volcanica’s Colombian Decaf Blend ticks all the boxes for tasting like caffeine, taste, and smoothness.
7. Best High-End: Volcanica Coffee Kona Decaf Coffee
When money is no object, and you want to enjoy the best possible cup of decaffeinated coffee, only the very best will do!
Some coffee lovers find it difficult to find decaf coffee beans that meet their high expectations and become frustrated at the quality of decaf coffee beans available in grocery stores.
Volcanica Coffee Kona Decaf Coffee is well-loved by even the fussiest of coffee drinkers, and many comment that it tastes just like caffeinated Kona coffee.
Considered by many to be a gourmet coffee, this decaf coffee has a robust volcanic taste with nutty and spicy notes.
- It’s an exotic, gourmet coffee featuring the best elements of Kona coffee.
- The medium roast coffee beans give it a full body, and it’s excellent for those who like a richer-tasting coffee.
- As the top high-end decaf coffee bean, you’ll soon discover why it’s so highly rated.
- It can be too pricey if you’re on a budget. Kona coffee is very special, so you might want to keep this one for special occasions if you’re a fan!
- If you have a French press, you may not get the full taste benefit of the coffee beans, so it may be better to use a coffee machine or a plunger.
Bottom line: This decaf coffee bean is undoubtedly pricey, but it delivers in every way! You couldn’t ask for a better or more unique type of decaf coffee bean. If you can’t afford to drink it every day, consider making it occasionally.
Best Decaf Coffee Beans 2021: Features & Price
|Lifeboost Medium Roast Decaf Coffee||100% free of chemicals|
Roasted by hand via the unique Swiss water method
|Volcanica Coffee Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Decaf Coffee||Excellent value|
Best quality beans due to the extensive washing process
Tasty fruit notes with just the right amount of acid
|Koa Coffee Swiss Water Decaf Whole Bean 100% Kona Coffee||Unique flavor profile from the Mauna Loa volcano slopes|
Excellent decaf alternative to Kona-flavored coffee
Smooth, light, and fruity taste
|Volcanica Coffee House Blend Decaf Coffee||Great for all-day coffee drinking|
Full-bodied flavors and rich aroma
|Volcanica Coffee Sumatra Mandheling Decaf Coffee||Low acidity|
Mild taste with exotic overtones
Great for mixing with other beans
|Volcanica Coffee Colombian Decaf Coffee||Smooth taste|
Light-bodied with sweet floral notes
It tastes very similar to caffeinated coffee
|Volcanica Coffee Kona Decaf Coffee||Spicy, nutty and buttery flavor profile|
Grown at high elevation
High-end decaf coffee
Are Decaf Coffee Beans Bad for You?
Decaf coffee beans aren’t bad for you, especially if you select ones that have been decaffeinated through the Swiss water method. This method uses pure Swiss water to remove caffeine instead of chemicals, which some people believe can be harmful to one’s health.
Decaf coffee is an excellent alternative if you enjoy a cup of coffee in the evenings, but you find that caffeine affects your sleep.
The caffeine content in decaf coffee varies from 0.3% to 3%, meaning that very little caffeine is present, making it a good choice if you’re sensitive to caffeine.
What Is the Most Decaffeinated Coffee?
The most decaffeinated coffee is made using the Swiss water method, which naturally removes 99.9% of the caffeine from the bean. Most other decaf coffee beans have between 97% and 99.7% of the caffeine removed.
You have probably heard the saying, “decaf is not necessarily no caf”.
With decaffeinated coffee, the FDA requires that 97% or more of the caffeine is removed before the company may classify the coffee as decaffeinated.
In Europe, the standards are even stricter, and coffee must have at least 99.7% of its caffeine removed to be eligible to use the decaf label.
But between the chemical-free benefits and 99.9% of the caffeine is removed, the Swiss water method makes the most decaffeinated coffee beans on the market.
Which Decaf Coffee Is the Healthiest?
Decaffeinated coffee can be a healthier option if you’re sensitive to caffeine. Some people find that caffeine stimulates the production of stomach acid, causing them to experience heartburn.
If you’re looking for further health benefits for your decaf coffee, coffee beans that haven’t undergone a chemical process in their decaffeination could be an excellent idea for you.
However, some decaffeination processes use chemicals. Common chemicals include ethyl acetate or methylene chloride to remove the caffeine from the coffee bean. Over the years, some people have expressed concerns about the health risks associated with these chemicals, causing some folks to question how safe decaffeinated coffee is.
If you feel uncomfortable drinking decaffeinated coffee that has used a chemical process for caffeine removal, you should consider brands that use the Swiss water method.
The healthiest decaf coffee is made using the Swiss water method for caffeine removal. Look for “SWM” on the label when buying your decaffeinated coffee beans. Coffee brands that use this method include Lifeboost, Koa Coffee, and Volcanica Coffee Company.