How Much Coffee to Add to the Beer?

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Coffee is one of the most versatile ingredients you can use in beer. Adding coffee to your brew creates a unique flavor profile and provides a mouthfeel that can’t be replicated with any other ingredient. So, how much coffee to add to the beer to get the desired flavor profile?

How Much Coffee to Add to the Beer?

Adding 3-5 ounces of coffee per 5 gallons of beer is recommended. This will give you a subtle coffee flavor that won’t overpower the beer itself. If you want a more intense coffee flavor, increase the amount to fit your taste. Experimenting with different amounts is the best way to understand how much coffee you should use in your beer.

A person holding fresh coffee beans and a small white mug filled with coffee beans

In addition to adding coffee, there are many other ways to incorporate it. For example, you can cold-steep or cold-press the coffee for a more intense flavor or add it near the end of the boil. You may also add specialty coffee beans or powders that can add unique flavors to your beer.

Coffee beans contain oils that add thickness and body to the beer. These oils may also give off flavors when added to beer, like chocolate or hazelnut. Remember that different beans will give off different flavors, so experiment with different types to find the one that suits you best.

How to Add Coffee to Beer

Adding coffee is a simple process. Begin by adding your desired amount of ground coffee or cold-pressed beans at the end of the boil. It’s best to add it during the last five minutes, as this will allow maximum extraction without boiling off any flavor.

Once the beer has been bottled or kegged, you can add a few drops of cold-pressed coffee or espresso shots to enhance the flavor and give the beer a more intense flavor.

For cold-pressed coffee, you can simply add it directly to the beer before bottling or kegging. It’s best to do this at least two weeks before consuming, as the cold-pressed coffee will need some time to infuse into the beer.

Factors to Consider When Adding Coffee to Beer

Infusing coffee into your beer is a process that requires some experimentation to get the desired results. You need to consider factors when deciding how much coffee to add. The following are some of the most important ones.

  • The type and roast of coffee used: Different types and roasts of coffee will give different flavor profiles that could be more or less intense than desired. For instance, a light roast will give a milder flavor, while a dark roast will give a more intense flavor. So, the roast level is essential when deciding how much coffee to add.
  • Processing Method: The process of the coffee can also affect the flavor. Processing coffee refers to the method of separating the beans from the husk. The process happens before roasting and could significantly affect the taste of the finished beer, so be sure to take this into consideration.
  • Freshness: Fresh coffee will have a stronger aroma and flavor than older coffee, so if you want to get the most out of your coffee-infused beer, use the freshest beans you can find
  • Temperature: The temperature of the beer when adding coffee will also play an essential role in the flavor. If you are adding coffee near the end of a boil, it should be done at a lower temperature to prevent any bitterness from the coffee. Coffee should be added when the wort temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • The origin of the coffee beans: The place where they were grown will affect their flavor profile. Coffee grown near the equator usually contribute a subtle, bright flavor, while coffee grown at higher altitudes may have a more intense, smoky taste.
A foamy cold beer filled on a mug placed on a brown wooden table

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do You Infuse Beer With Coffee?

To infuse the beer with coffee, steep your coffee grounds or cold-pressed beans at the end of the boil for maximum extraction. You can also add cold-pressed coffee or espresso shots once the beer has been kegged or bottled.

What Does Coffee Beer Taste Like?

Coffee beer tastes like a blend of beer and coffee. Depending on the type and roast of coffee used, it can range from a mild flavor with subtle notes to a robust, intense flavor.

What Are the Benefits of Adding Coffee to Beer?

Coffee enhances the aroma, contributes body and complexity to the beer, and adds a unique flavor. Coffee can also act as a preservative for beers that are aged with it.


Adding coffee to beer is a great way to add complexity and flavor. With some experimentation, you can find the amount of coffee and type of roast that gives you the desired flavor. Remember to consider your coffee beans’ processing method, origin, and freshness when deciding how much to add.