The convenience of pre-ground coffee is great, but it can come at a cost of flavour and the lifespan of your coffee. We've answered some of the usual questions we get around pre-ground coffee, please put any further questions in the comments below and we will answer them.
Why would I use pre-ground coffee?
Pre-ground coffee is the perfect option for traveling, or to reduce initial coffee setup costs, getting up and running on your coffee making journey. Buying a grinder may be out of the budget so buying ground coffee is your only option. Just remember that it's not your best option, grinding your coffee right before using it will always result in a much better tasting coffee.
What grind size should I select?
Match the grind size with the device you are using. When you order coffee from us, we give you a number of grind options to choose from. If you're not getting the results your after, you may been to choose a different grind setting. Not all devices are the same, for example, our 'espresso' setting may be too fine for a cheap home machine. If that's you, just simply choose the next grind option (which would be courser) the next time you purchase coffee.
How dose the grind size affect my extraction?
Course grind = fast extraction
Fine grind = slow extraction
A courser grind size exposes more coffee surface area and speeds up extraction. Conversely, as grind size becomes finer, extraction is slowed. Skilled barista's use grind size to control extractions and achieve the taste they are after.
How long will pre-ground coffee last? and when is it at its best?
The simple answer... To get the best from pre-ground coffee, it should be used within a week of roasting and being ground. Whole coffee beans will generally be at their peak 10-14 day after roasting and hold good flavour for up to 1 month from roast date.
The technical answer... we first need to understand how coffee ages.
When coffee is roasted, Co2 along with flavour aromas are trapped inside the beans. To get the best taste from coffee it needs to be aged to allow this Co2 to dissipate. As the Co2 is escaping flavour aromas are also escaping. Another factor to consider is oxidation, if coffee is exposed to oxygen it will begin to degrade and oxidize. Coffee is at its best when the perfect balance of Co2 has escaped whilst still retaining high amounts of flavour aromas and it has not been exposed to oxygen for a large amount of time.
Grinding coffee allows Co2 and flavour aromas to escape far quicker along with speeding up oxidation meaning Pre-ground is at its tastiest far earlier and for a far shorter time than whole beans, this is because the ageing process is dramatically speedup.
How should I store pre-ground coffee?
All coffee should be stored in an airtight container and in a cool place away from any sunlight.
Is pre-ground coffee the best option for me?
If you don’t have the space for a grinder or cant afford one then pre-ground is a good option. Fresh ground coffee is a far better option in most cases.
A hand grinder like the Rhinowares Compact Grinder would be a cheap option at just $62.95. Otherwise, if it's time to start making exception coffee at home, treat yourself to a Domestic Electric Coffee Grinder is the way to go.