Alex has never been professionally involved into the world of coffee, however he knows much more than any average barista. Being an avid coffee lover, Alex is constantly searching for new tips, tools, and techniques to make his morning cup of java even more perfect.
Mary has been dealing with coffee almost all her life long: in her teenage years, she worked as a barista in a number of well-known coffeehouses, later developing her knowledge and skills while studying at the university as well. Several years after graduation, she managed to open her own small coffee bar.
Last updated: April 27, 2021
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Have you ever tried to find a good decaf coffee? If you’ve wanted to pull your hair out in the coffee aisle, then surely you have. The struggle to find high-quality, delicious decaf coffee can feel like it is impossible! Plus, finding that quality while looking for fair-trade or organic options is tear-jerking. And that’s where we come in to help you. We have uncovered the best decaf coffees ranging from light roasts to dark roasts and bag sizes from 10 ounces to 3 pounds.
It can feel like the types and roasts you want don’t exist in decaf form, or if they do, they taste nothing like the original brew. That’s why we ranked, labeled, and reviewed the best decaf coffee we could find to bring you enough choices to expand your decaf options so you can find your new favorite or even find the first decaf coffee you love.
Searching for a classic decaf coffee? Eight O’Clock the Original Whole Bean Decaf is a smooth medium roast with sweet and fruity notes that is sure to satisfy your coffee craving without the jitters from caffeine! All Eight O’Clock the Original Whole Bean Decaf comes packed in sealed bags to preserve the flavor and aroma of the beans inside. Each bag holds 24 ounces of whole decaf coffee beans that have been certified Orthodox Union Kosher! This well-balanced brew of Arabica beans will be sure to kick the midday coffee craving to curb and keep your caffeine-free! Purchasing the beans whole and grinding the beans at home preserves the freshness and taste of each coffee bean until you start sipping. If you are willing to grind the beans yourself to better keep the smooth flavor, then Eight O’Clock the Original Whole Bean Decaf should be on your shopping list!
What makes it special?
Classic flavor profile
Fruit tones and sweet notes
Whole beans to preserve freshness
Packed in a sealed bag to preserve the freshness and taste
If your coffee shop of choice is Starbucks, then the Starbucks Variety Decaf Ground Coffee will bring that same coffee shop flavor to your coffee pot! This variety pack with two medium blends (Decaf Pike Place and Decaf House Blend) and one dark blend (Decaf Café Verona) will help you find your new favorite decaf coffee or simply expand your interest in others! All three blends are made with 100% Arabica coffee beans that have been pre-ground to make your brewing experience easier! These coffees have tones of rich, flavorful dark cocoa and warm, nutty notes that complement the lively roasts and make each cup well rounded and each sip smooth. Each bag has 12 ounces of delicious decaf coffee, giving you 36 ounces of decaf coffee in total. The bags are sealed for freshness to ensure you have the best experience with the Starbucks Variety Decaf Ground Coffee!
If a full-bodied medium to dark brew is what calls to you, then the NO FUN JO DECAF is a blend you might want to put into your coffee pot! The complex, full flavor is balanced by notes of sweet blueberry and creamy milk chocolate that give this blend a unique and delicious taste. The caffeine from these 100% Arabica coffee beans is removed using the Swiss water process and is chemical and gluten-free! Each 12-ounce bag of coffee is full of pre-ground organic coffee with no added flavors for a natural, earthy brew. NO FUN JO DECAF is certified organic by the USDA, and fair-trade so you know you are getting quality coffee with quality care. To top it off, it is a non-GMO and an Orthodox Union Kosher product! If these are the factors that appeal to you when selecting your decaf coffee, be sure to pick up a bag of NO FUN JO DECAF and give it a try!
If you like to fill your cup with rich, dark and nutty brews, you may want to give Kicking Horse Coffee Decaf a try next time you hit the store! This dark roast has a full flavor with notes of hazelnuts and chocolate that will satisfy the lovers of dark coffee. Each 10-ounce bag is full of whole coffee beans that have been decaffeinated using the Swiss water process, which is chemical-free. Additionally, Kicking Horse Coffee Decaf is certified organic by the USDA and fair-trade, so it is good for your cup and the farmers who grew it! Kicking Horse grows its coffee beans in an environmentally conscious way, so the planet gets some love, too! Kicking Horse Coffee Decaf is also a certified Orthodox Union Kosher! The long-lasting finish is the most recognizable aspect of this brew and will let you savor the delicious taste after each sip.
Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s Blend is perfect for those who love Peet’s Coffee from the shop! Now, you can have delicious Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s Blend in your own coffee pot and have it taste just like it does in the coffee shop! This dark roast is rich and complex, perfect for those who enjoy full-bodied brews with silky finishes. Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s Blend is a mix of coffee beans from around the world, making it a trip around the globe in every sip. The coffee beans are hand-roasted in small batches to ensure freshness and peak flavor for your brew! Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s Blend comes in bags of ten and a half ounces and pre-ground for your convenience and ease of use. If dark, robust and aromatic calls your name, then Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s the best decaf coffee for you!
San Francisco Bay Coffee Decaf is the perfect choice for those who enjoy exciting flavor profiles in their coffee! This light to medium Arabica roast hails from Central America and is stuffed with delicious notes that are sure to satisfy. Sweet mandarin orange blends with baker’s chocolate and the warm tones of toasted almonds to create a sweet and summery brew that is bound to kick your coffee craving out the door. San Francisco Bay Coffee Decaf is a gourmet blend of naturally decaffeinated coffee, so you know that there are no chemicals involved in the decaffeination process. Each bag has 32 ounces of whole coffee beans and comes with a satisfaction guarantee, so there is no reason not to give San Francisco Bay Coffee Decaf a shot! Plus, San Francisco Bay Coffee is a family-owned roasting company, so you know that it is made with love and care!
What stands out?
Gourmet coffee blend
A large amount (32 ounces)
Unique flavor profile
Whole coffee beans to preserve flavor
What cons did we manage to find?
Beans must be ground at home
Costumers report that it’s a bit darker than a light medium roast, and more of a medium to dark roast
If rich and slightly sweet coffee is something you have been searching for, then search no further! This 100% decaf Arabica coffee from Café Don Pablo is sure to please your palate. Grown in Colombia, this medium to dark roast has notes of caramel and cocoa blended with touches of citrus to excite and cut through the earthy tones of a darker roast. Each Café Don Pablo Decaf bag is a whopping 2 pounds of whole coffee beans that have been roasted in small batches to ensure that every bean is roasted to the same perfect taste. Café Don Pablo Decaf also has a low acidity index, so folks who need a brew with a lower amount of acidity, this is for you! This coffee is decaffeinated through the Swiss water process, which is natural, so the coffee is chemical-free! Café Don Pablo Decaf is also a certified non-GMO product!
What makes it special?
Whole coffee beans to ensure freshness
Roasted in small batches
Decaffeinated through the Swiss water process (all-natural)
The Original Donut Shop Decaf Coffee is a favorite of Keurig and K-Cup users, so if you are switching from caffeinated coffee to decaf, and want to keep the same delicious coffee flavor as your caffeinated, have no fear! The Original Donut Shop Decaf Coffee K-Cup pods are widely regarded and praised as keeping the same taste as their caffeinated counterparts. These are easy to use, quick to clean out of your K-Cup brewer, and almost 100% mess-free! Plus, they brew super-fast, and the Arabica beans fill your home with the mouth-watering aroma of a classic donut and coffee shop. The Original Donut Shop Decaf Coffee is inspired by the winning combination of donuts and coffee, and boy does it deliver! Sweet, donut-like notes balance out the bold flavors of that accompany a classic medium roast such as this. The Original Donut Shop Decaf Coffee K-Cups are extra-bold and bursting with flavor, and you’ll love it!
The Kirkland Signature Decaf Coffee is a great value and a delicious, aromatic dark roast brew! The large, 48-ounce coffee tin contains, you guessed it, 48 ounces of a full-bodied dark roast with notes of sweetness that cut through the heaviness of the brew. The tin can be resealed after opening to keep the ground beans as fresh as possible, and when empty, it can be recycled! Made with Arabica coffee beans grown in Central and South America, the aroma from the finely ground coffee is so satisfying and delicious! While being brewed, the aroma wafts and has a scent that will make your mouth water. If you have been searching for a fine grind decaf, the Kirkland Signature Decaf Coffee is surely for you! The fine grind with please even the pickiest of coffee lovers and leave you with a fresh cup of Joe that is smoother than silk.
What do we love it for?
The resealable tin that preserves the freshness of grounds
Fine grind coffee
What were we disappointed with?
The simple flavor profile and not complex
Some costumers rank it as a medium to dark roast, rather than a dark roast
A delightful blend of Arabica and Robusta coffee beans, the Maxwell House Original Decaf is a classic yet simple choice when it comes to finding a decaf coffee. The Maxwell House Original Decaf is a medium roast that is bold, smooth and simple, but generally a classic option! The Maxwell House Original Decaf is perfect for any automatic drip brewers due to the even size of the coffee grinds. The Maxwell House Original Decaf Coffee has a lovely aroma that only comes from a classic coffee blend. The mix of both Arabica and Robusta beans creates a bright but still hearty brew. Each plastic jug comes with 29.3 ounces of pre-ground coffee for your ease of use, and to keep your coffee grinds fresh for longer, it has a resealable lid. The plastic jug can be recycled, and Maxwell House Original Decaf Coffee is a certified Orthodox Union Kosher! Like the jug says, “it is good to the last drop!”
What makes it stand out?
Perfect for automatic drip brewers
Recyclable plastic jug
Pre-ground for ease of use
Certified Orthodox Union Kosher
Which disadvantages must you keep in mind?
Takes up counter of shelf space
Things to Consider
So, what factors go into buying a good decaf coffee? What goes into the decaf coffee that appeals the most to you? What is the difference between type and origin? Should you be looking at blends that used a Swiss water process to remove caffeination or a chemical one? What should you be paying attention to find what you like? No worries! We can help. In this buying guide, we will give you a quick crash course on what all these questions and coffee terms mean. Consider this your dictionary of coffee terms. However, most importantly, we can help you understand how they factor into the taste and brew of the decaf coffee you are looking to purchase.
Why would you want to drink decaf coffee?
You can want to drink decaf coffee for many, many reasons. Often times, people do not like the way caffeinated coffee makes them feel, or they get the jitters. Pregnant women are not supposed to drink or consume any form of caffeine, but sometimes that a good cup of Joe is all you crave. Some people feel their heart beat faster, and they start to sweat simply because of caffeine. Decaf coffee can fix all these problems by giving people an alternative to the classically caffeinated coffee that they can enjoy in the same way.
Features to consider before you buy decaf coffee
What should you be looking at when going out to shop around for decaf coffee? More importantly, what do all those words on the labels and descriptions mean? It can be so confusing when you read the label of a decaf coffee and get bombarded by confusing words about the flavor, origin, and type that do not help you, because you simply get overwhelmed by all the information. To break it down for you, each term has its own meaning, and although some may appear to be similar, they are all quite different. For example, a type is not the same as a roast, like so many people think. So now, let’s get right into the different features of coffee, and in what way each term affects your brew. This is going to help you when you pick your decaf coffee, and it may help to take a moment to think over what kinds of flavors you enjoy in your life.
The type dictates what kind of coffee bean (or beans) are in the blend you are purchasing or consuming. Several different types of coffee are Arabica, Colombian, Kona, and Robusta. Arabica is a fairly standard coffee beans, and it is popular with most coffee drinkers. Arabica beans are in almost all of the blends on our list, establishing their dominance in the coffee world. They are also the most versatile coffee bean since they can be lightly roasted or heavily roasted and produce two very different brews of coffee. Of course, it can be roasted to medium, which is the most popular roast of Arabica beans and most other coffee beans as well. Its mellow flavor changes with the level it is roasted, and it is able to grow in all popular coffee farming locations, and for those reasons, it is used by most coffee farmers, roasters, and manufacturers.
Origin is the geographical location where the coffee beans themselves were grown, harvested, and processed. This also affects the final brew, scent, and flavor notes.
Depending on the soil, sun level, and humidity, different undertone flavors are created naturally within the coffee beans that are described as “fruity,” “bright,” “smoky,” or “smooth.” Central and South America, Hawaii, Indonesia, and Africa are the producers of the most coffee beans, globally. The Café Don Pablo Decaf is a great example of how the location of the coffee beans can create unique flavors and tastes based on their soil of origin. The origin location often will tell you a bit about the taste you can expect from a coffee blend, like the notes and flavors, intensity, and type of bean that will be in your cup of Joe.
The roast level is used to describe how long the coffee beans were roasted, which dictates how intense or bold the coffee will be after it is brewed. Light roast coffee beans brew to a softer, gentler flavor. There is also medium roast which, you guessed it, is in the middle of light and dark roasts. Medium bridges the gap between light and dark roasts. Medium roasts are the most common since they produce bold and smooth flavors without the power of a dark roast. Most people find a medium roast enjoyable since they are flavorful, but not too intense or overpowering. Dark roast coffee beans are the more intense and rich brews that are often found in coffees such as Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s, which have robust, and heavier flavors complemented by notes that are brighter to cut through.
“Roasted in small batches” or “hand-roasted” generally means that there is a higher chance that all the beans were roasted for the exact same amount of time, this gives the coffee a more consistent flavor.
Notes are created by the origins and the types and are very important when picking the decaf coffee to purchase. If bitter things bother you, then look for lighter notes and labels like “fruity” and “bright.” If you prefer heavier flavors, then look for adjectives like “rich,” “bold,” and “intense” on the labels of your decaf coffee. Logistically, coffee beans grown in one location will not have the same notes as coffees from others. The notes from more tropical climates are fruitier than the notes from cloudy or cooler climates. These can sometimes be blended together to create unique flavor profiles that complement each other and make a delightful brew. Taste and notes can sometimes be confused with added flavorings, but notes come directly from the coffee beans themselves and are why beans from the same locations produce similar tastes. Think about what kinds of foods and drinks you enjoy and apply the flavor profiles you enjoy in wines, salads, and fruits to your coffee.
The size of the bag or tin that you purchase has to do with you and your life. When considering bag or tin size, think of these questions to try and gauge what size bag, tin, or container you need. How much coffee do you drink? How much are you willing to spend on this amount of coffee? Will any others in your household be drinking this decaf brew? If you drink a lot of coffee, then a bigger bag or tin is probably the path to choose, but if you only drink coffee every once in a while, then a smaller bag should suffice. The Kirkland Signature Decaf Coffee is a 3-pound tin that would last even the most furiously fast coffee drinker a while to finish. For those who want a smaller bag, the Kicking Horse Coffee Decaf comes in a 10-ounce bag.
There are two ways to remove the caffeine from a coffee bean: natural and chemical. Chemical is exactly that; the coffee is exposed to chemicals to extract the caffeine from the bean. Natural is typically through a water process. There is the normal water process where solvents are used, (but still no chemicals,) and the Swiss water process where there are no solvents (and still no chemicals). All give the same outcome: coffee free from caffeine and all that comes with it.
Whichever method you agree with most is fine to pick, as it will not change the flavor of the brew.
Some people do not want any chemicals touching their coffee, while others do not mind. It all comes down to personal preference about the food you put into your body. If you prefer organic and all-natural products for the rest of your life, then either one of the water processes will probably be more up your alley than the chemical treatment.
Decaf coffee has almost all of the benefits of regular coffee without the caffeine or increased blood pressure that regular caffeinated coffee brings with it. Caffeine itself is actually a drug, classified as a psychoactive stimulant. This stimulant can tighten up the blood vessels in the body, causing higher blood pressure. Caffeinated coffee can also cause sleeplessness, anxiety, digestive issues, and heart arrhythmia in people who are very sensitive to the effects of a stimulant. What scientifically makes decaf coffee healthier and better for you is the absence of the stimuli created by having the caffeine in your drink, which can lead to increased blood pressure, restlessness, and anxiety. Beyond that, decaf and regular coffee have the same health benefits. Both decaf and regular coffee have high levels of antioxidants, and it is proven that they can help you lead a longer life.
Since decaf coffee is just that, decaffeinated coffee, it can be enjoyed any time of day without risking poor sleep that night, anxiety, or the jitters. Although coffee is traditionally consumed in the morning after waking up or with breakfast. Some folks enjoy a cup around midafternoon as a little pick me up, but that does not really apply to decaf brews since there is no caffeine to “pick you up.” Caffeine is a psychoactive stimulant that increases brain activity and energy levels. Caffeine is the most widely consumed psychoactive drug in the world. When the caffeine is removed like it is in decaf coffee, the coffee does not have the psychoactive stimulant qualities that it did before. Most decaf coffees have removed 99.9% of the caffeine in the brew, and the tiny bit of caffeine left in the blend is so small that the chance of it keeping you awake or giving you the jitters is almost impossible.
Studies on decaf coffee show no evidence that it is in any way detrimental to a person’s health. These studies have shown that it has the same benefits as regular caffeinated coffee, sans caffeine, jitters, anxiety, digestive issues, and high blood pressure. Some new studies are showing that there is a small chance decaf coffee can help protect against heart disease and type two diabetes. One study says that decaf coffee can help slow fat production and enable a slow and steady weight loss. All of these smaller studies aside, the hard, cold, proven facts all agree that decaf coffee will not adversely affect your health.
We cannot tell you which decaf coffee is best for you and your tastes, but overall, the ten decaf coffee brands and blends on our list are the best decaf coffee brands we could find. Our Editor’s pick of Eight O’Clock Decaf Coffee is the most well-rounded coffee on our list, while the Best Value decaf coffee Peet’s Coffee Decaf Major Dickason’s Blend is the best price to quality ratio. The Starbucks Decaf Coffee Variety is our premium pick due to its gourmet, luxury flavor, and affordable price point. The best organic decaf coffee NO FUN JO DECAF might be your choice because of its organic and fair-trade policies. There is no definitive best decaf coffee because it all depends on your personality, palate, and what you look for in a company that you support. We are sure that the best decaf for you is on our list!