There’s nothing like a nice cup of coffee to get your day started, especially if you’re not a morning person (seriously, how do you people do it!).
While it’s true that instant coffee can never live up to the taste, texture, or aroma of freshly ground and brewed coffee, it still beats having no coffee at all, particularly if you can’t afford one of those fancy full-blown coffee machines.
Today we’re making the most of what we got and presenting you with the 5 best freeze-dried coffee to make your experience as enjoyable as possible. Oh yeah, we’re going there, so buckle up and let’s get to it!
5 Best Freeze Dried Coffee
Kicking off our list with a widely popular option, the Mount Hagen Freeze Dried Instant Coffee is produced by one of the most reliable makers in the industry. They use premium-quality organic arabica coffee beans that are ethically-harvested in Papua New Guinea.
This organic freeze-dried coffee brews a well-balanced flavor profile, with mild intensity when it comes to taste and aroma. It doesn’t taste bitter or acidic like cheap instant coffee brands, but it’s definitely on the lighter side if you prefer strong coffee.
The Mount Hagen Freeze Dried Instant Coffee comes packaged in a glass jar to ensure that the ground stays fresh for as long as possible. Weighing about 3.53 ounces, one jar of Mount Hagen’s is meant to give you 60 servings using one teaspoon per 6-ounce cup.
Approved by hundreds of coffee lovers, the Folgers Classic Roast Instant Coffee Crystals yields a rich and smooth cup of coffee in a matter of seconds. It dissolves easily and blends well, which makes it a great choice for mixing with milkshake or smoothies.
Folgers have been in the game since 1850, and you can tell by the nice, full-body flavor that they know what they’re doing. The high popularity of their freeze-dried coffee is mainly due to the low price, which is quite a bargain for the amount of coffee you’re getting.
This medium roast freeze-dried coffee comes in an 8-ounce plastic jar, giving you up to 120 6-ounce cups.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, chances are you already heard of the brand Nescafe or even already had a taste of their products. They have an impressive record in pleasing coffee enthusiasts, and this Classic Original Instant Coffee is no exception.
The Gold Blend version delivers a rich, bold flavor that’s considered one of the best among instant coffee makers. The coffee isn’t 100% organic, but the company is committed to fair-trade policies, which is always appreciated.
The grounds are packaged in a glass jar to keep the freshness and the aroma of your coffee locked in. The 7-ounce jar makes up to 105 servings of 6-ounce cups.
Made from superior grade arabica coffee beans, the Cafe Tastle Gold Freeze Dried Instant Coffee offers high-quality grounds to satisfy your daily cravings.
Unlike the bitter taste of most lower-end instant coffee brands, the Cafe Tastle has a more earthy flavor profile that’s rather rich, bold, and raw. It comes in a unique container with a handle so it’s easier for you to manoeuvre, especially since it’s pretty huge.
The container is almost 18-ounces in size, brewing as many as 270 cups of coffee. It’s made using BPA-free reusable plastic that’s both safe and eco-friendly.
Last but not definitely not least, the Waka Coffee Quality Instant Coffee is made of high-quality 100% Colombian arabica beans, giving you a nice brew with rich and more complex flavors.
The taste profile of these medium-roast beans is smooth and well-balanced, along with hints of citrus. The folks at Waka applied advanced freeze-drying techniques to preserve the original flavor and aroma of the beans as efficiently as possible.
The Waka Freeze Dried Instant Coffee dissolves rather quickly, so you won’t have to wait for your beverage on busy mornings. The box contains single-serve packets, which means you can easily take some on the go.
What is Freeze Dried Coffee?
Freeze-dried coffee refers to one of the two methods of manufacturing instant coffee, the other being spray drying.
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The process of spray drying involves spraying liquid coffee concentrate into very dry, hot air (at approximately 480°F). This causes the water content in the coffee to completely evaporate, producing dehydrated, small coffee crystals. Spray drying is the hot way of making instant coffee.
On the colder end of the spectrum, there’s the freeze-drying method. In this process, coffee that’s already brewed (also known as coffee liquor) is dried by freezing via exposure to subzero temperatures.
So how does freeze-drying work? Well, here are the general steps of obtaining freeze-dried coffee:
- First, the coffee extract is frozen down from 40°F (around 4 – 5°C) to reach approximately 20°F ( between -6 and -8°C). By the end of this stage, commonly called primary freezing, the coffee extract becomes of a slushy consistency.
- After primary freezing, the slushy coffee is further frozen by bringing its temperature even lower to reach about -50°F (ranging from -40 to -50°C). There are several methods to achieve this such as slow cooling and quick cooling, each with a different yield.
Slow cooling, for example, produces large and dark coffee crystals, while quick cooling results in finer and lighter coffee granules.
- Then, the slabs or sheets of frozen coffee are broken down and ground to reach the proper size required for the last stage; drying.
- Finally, the ground coffee particles are put inside drying chambers to vaporise the ice by applying a combination of heat and vacuum, yielding instant freeze-dried coffee.
What Else Can You Use Freeze Dried Coffee For?
Besides the obvious use of instant freeze-dried coffee to brew a quick cup of caffeinated (or decaffeinated) goodness, here are a couple of other popular uses that you can try:
- If you’re into baking, you can use instant coffee to add flavor without dissolving it in water.
- You can use instant coffee for cooking purposes. For example, making dry rubs for chicken or meat.
- Freeze-dried instant coffee can also be used as an ingredient in smoothies and milkshakes.
Choosing the best freeze-dried coffee can be a confusing task, especially with the nasty reputation of instant coffee. Luckily, we managed to find high-quality options so you can have your cup of coffee ready to go in no time!
That being said, if you’re looking for a premium-quality 100% organic instant coffee that offers amazing value, then the Mount Hagen Organic Instant Coffee should be right up your alley!
But if you want something affordable that still tastes pretty decent, check out the Folgers Classic Roast Instant Coffee Crystals.