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How Many Coffee Beans Equals a Cup of Coffee

How Many Coffee Beans Equals a Cup of Coffee
Latest Update: February 28, 2018

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For many people, their first introduction to making coffee at home comes in the form of instant coffee. It is, after all, a quick and easy way to get a cup of coffee ready first thing in the morning.

Heat up the kettle, add your coffee to your mug, add hot water, mix to combine, and enjoy. Easy as that.

Quick NavigationWhy the Amount of Coffee Beans to Use Can VaryCoffee Bean GuidelinesFINAL VERDICT

However, when these same instant coffee drinkers start to sample coffee made with other types of brewing methods, the difference is immediately noticeable to them. The aroma is better, the taste is fuller – it’s just a vastly improved cup of coffee compared to instant blends.

This is often enough for many to ditch the instant coffee and invest in another type of coffee maker, such as an automatic drip machine or a French press.

Most coffee lovers will tell you that when making truly good coffee, you should use fresh whole beans. If you’re coming over from the world of instant coffee, it might be a little bit confusing when you have to adapt to using whole beans instead of pre-ground coffee.

Not to worry, that’s where we come in. We’ll help you figure out just how many coffee beans you’ll need to use in order to make that morning cup of coffee. However, before we get to that, it’s important to go over the reasons why the amount of beans you should use can actually vary significantly.

Why the Amount of Coffee Beans to Use Can Vary

Why the Amount of Coffee Beans to Use Can Vary

When making coffee from scratch using whole coffee beans, the amount needed to make even just a single cup can end up varying.

There’s a few things that you’re going to want to keep in mind. The first is your own preference for how strong you like your coffee. Do you need plenty of caffeine to get you going or are you alright with a lower amount? What sort of roast are your coffee beans? What size grind will you be using?

These are all questions to consider when deciding how many coffee beans that you’ll need to use.

On top of that, personal preference will also end up playing a rather large role. You might have to do a little bit of experimenting in order to find just the right balance of coffee beans and water that makes the perfect cup of coffee for you.

So with all of that in mind, we can still provide some general commonly accepted guidelines for you to try out initially.

Coffee Bean Guidelines

Coffee Bean Guidelines

In all honesty, it can be somewhat tough to give an exact number of coffee beans to use for making even a single cup of coffee. Unless you are using a digital scale of some sort to accurately weigh your beans, you can actually end up with totally different amounts weighed each time you even use two teaspoons worth.

Second, consider that even when grinding your coffee beans, their weight will remain the same in spite of their volume changing. Eight grams of whole coffee beans will still weigh eight grams when ground.

The final thing to consider is that depending on who you ask about what type of coffee to water ratio to use, you’ll probably end up with a different answer.

So with all of that information in mind, we can still recommend the following simple guideline to follow – for a single cup of coffee, you should use two tablespoons of coffee per six ounces of water. If you’re using a stronger roast, you can lower that to a single tablespoon.

Of course, the recommendations listed above are only very general guidelines. They are simply widely accepted starting points.

Obviously, if you intend to make more than one cup of coffee, you would alter the amount of coffee beans used. Following the exact same starting guidelines that we listed above, you would end up using a ratio of slightly over 60 grams of coffee used per liter of water.


As we noted before, it’s best to start out following some simple guidelines like those recommended above, and from there, tweak the amount of coffee and/or water used until you arrive at just the right coffee to water ratio that you enjoy the most. There is really no one size fits all answer when it comes to how many coffee beans you should be using as the answer can be different for everyone.

There’s so many different factors that go into making the perfect cup of coffee – things like water temperature, type of roast, brewing time, grind size, and even what type of coffee maker that you are using can all have an impact on how your coffee will turn out.

Over time though, as you gain more experience in brewing your own coffee, it won’t be long until you figure out how many coffee beans equals a cup of coffee.

Date Published: January 22, 2018

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