Is black coffee bitter?

In this text we will provide the answer to the question: “Is black coffee bitter?”. In addition, we will explain how to reduce the sugar until you reach the coffee without sugar and how to make black coffee less bitter.

Is black coffee bitter?

If you over-extract the coffee, it can be extremely bitter. Another thing that can make your coffee bitter is the wrong grind size, using old or not fermented beans correctly, using the wrong roast, using the wrong water-to-coffee ratio, the equipment being dirty, using unfiltered water, incompatibility of the fermentation method and various other factors.

In addition, some people are predisposed to metabolize caffeine more quickly, which leads them to prefer bitter black coffee to milk, in addition to dark chocolates to sweeter ones.

How to reduce the sugar in your coffee?

To reduce the sugar until you reach the coffee without sugar, you should choose a 100% Arabica coffee with characteristics close to the type of beverage you like the most (smooth or full-bodied, with more or less caffeine, with more sweetness or acidity and other characteristics that you value).

The type of roast and the method of preparation also influence the flavor of the coffee. Talk to a barista and identify the ones that best match your preferences. Now, try to gradually decrease the amount of sugar in each cup. 

The recommended time frame to completely eliminate sugar from coffee is three weeks, on average, as the taste buds are renewed during this period (and thus your taste buds will gradually get used to flavors that were previously masked by sugar).

Another alternative is to replace refined sugar with natural sweeteners (and that don’t raise blood sugar as much) as those based on xylitol, erythritol or stevia. There are also those who suggest replacing sugar with spices such as cinnamon, cocoa powder, cardamom and anise.

Test the taste, trying to perceive the natural sensory characteristics of the coffee. In quality tests, sweet flavors such as caramel, chocolate, fruity or herbal notes are described as natural attributes of 100% Arabica coffees.

If you still haven’t gotten used to cutting the artificial sweetness out of coffee, a tip to start with is to choose brewing methods that don’t provoke your taste buds right away with high doses of caffeine or strong bitterness.

Therefore, understanding a little about the time x type of infusion relationship, or the time in which the ground grain is in contact with the water and how the flow will occur, is essential. We have already mentioned here that the more potent the infusion, the greater the presence of soluble particles in the coffee, including oils and other substances.

So, a tip is to start with strained methods, in which the filter will retain part of these substances and tends to result in a coffee with clearer flavors (able to reveal delicate notes) and smoothness. In addition to the traditional strainer, you can try methods like Hario V60, Chemex or Clever.

Then, move on to more powerful methods that do not require the use of traditional filters, such as espresso. At that point, you’ll be ready for a burst of flavor.

How to make black coffee less bitter?

To make the drink even tastier and with a less bitter taste, add a teaspoon of cinnamon and a pinch of salt or sugar to the powder. The salt takes the bitterness out of the roasted beans.

Cinnamon makes your coffee even more tasty and turbocharged, as this spice has thermogenic properties, that is, it helps the metabolism to work more efficiently and quickly, contributing to fat burning. Using cinnamon and salt, you don’t need to fill your coffee with sugar and it tastes even better.

Put a pinch of salt in the coffee.

This can help suppress the bitter taste and improve the flavor of the coffee, as sodium chloride, or table salt, makes the sodium present in coffee more distinctive, which results in a less bitter taste. You can add a pinch to a coffee that has just been brewed.

You can use regular table salt for this method. Keep in mind that adding a small amount of salt won’t make the coffee any saltier and won’t ruin the flavor.

Add cream or milk 

This can be a good option if you usually take it with cream or milk and want a more natural flavor. The fat content in these ingredients can neutralize the coffee’s bitter taste. If you usually drink black coffee but want to try this method, try adding a spoonful of cream or milk and try it to see if you like it. Then add more cream or milk if it’s still bitter.

Put sugar

This can be a good option if you don’t mind neutralizing the bitter taste with the sweet taste. Add a teaspoon of sugar to reduce the bitterness and add a hint of sweetness to the coffee. Use white or brown sugar for this method. Cane sugar tends to have fewer additives, so it may be a better option.

Other FAQs about Coffee that you may be interested in.

Intermittent fasting: can you have coffee with coconut oil?

Is 3 cups of coffee a day too much? 

Is 8 cups of coffee a day too much?


In this text we provided the answer to the question: “Is black coffee bitter?”. In addition, we explained how to reduce the sugar until you reach the coffee without sugar and how to make black coffee less bitter.