Naturally Sweet Coffee: Is There Such A Thing?

People always assume that all types of coffee are bitter and only become sweet when adding sugar to your brew. But if you explore the coffee scene in detail, you will find out that not all coffee types are strong and bitter.

While not everyone may believe it, but naturally sweet coffee actually exists! This type of coffee is perfect for people who do not like artificial sweeteners.

Apart from knowing that natural sweet coffee exists, it is also essential to understand how some types of coffee become naturally sweet. This way, you can enjoy your cup of coffee without any sugar or sweeteners!

naturally sweet coffee
Some coffee beans are naturally sweet, especially when they are not yet processed.

How Is There Naturally Sweet Coffee?

Roasted coffee beans start as fruits. They are basically the pits of coffee berries, which taste sweet, especially when they are ripe and bright red.

But why are these coffee berries sweet? If you remember a discussion by your science teacher in secondary school, fruits have natural sugars, specifically glucose and fructose.

Since coffee beans come from fruit, they contain these two types of sugars. But it is worth noting that a coffee bean’s level of sweetness depends on its type.

Arabica coffee has the highest sugar content, ranging from 6.25 to 8.45 percent. However, the roasting process of naturally sweet coffee beans affects their taste.

Keeping Coffee Beans Naturally Sweet

coffee beans
Roasted coffee beans came from the pits of coffee cherries, so they have natural sugars like glucose and fructose.

There are different methods for processing and roasting coffee beans. All these processes will affect the sweetness of the beans. For instance, not washing the beans before the drying process, or fermenting the beans before roasting, will make your roasted coffee beans sweeter.

When you do not wash coffee beans before allowing them to dry, you keep all the sugars in the beans, which are otherwise extracted when you wash them.

Similarly, coffee bean fermentation results in naturally sweet coffee. The reason is that you are allowing the natural sugars to refine, causing the beans to have fruity notes.

In addition, lightly roasted coffee beans are sweeter than dark roasted beans. A light roast level brings out the beans’ fruity and floral notes along with their natural sweetness.

After the fermentation, drying, and roasting, the final stage — brewing — comes next. Brewing freshly roasted and ground beans allow you to develop the sweetness further.

Brewing the beans in balance allows you to bring out the natural sugars from the beans so they can harmonize with the other flavours of the coffee.

Naturally Sweet Coffee Varieties

coffee beans
Most of the naturally sweet coffee beans grew from elevated environments where the temperature is cooler.

The environment where coffee trees are grown also affects their coffee beans’ level of sweetness. For instance, coffee beans from places such as Guatemala, Colombia, Kenya, and Ethiopia are famous for their sweetness.

These places have relatively high elevations and colder temperatures. Such an environment is perfect if you want coffee beans to be sweeter than the ones grown in the lowland.

If you want to try brewing sweet coffee beans, here are some naturally sweet coffee varieties:

1. Guatemalan Antigua Coffee

This type of coffee grows at an elevation of over 4,600 feet above sea level. Guatemalan Antigua Coffee includes Arabica varieties, such as Coffee arabica Bourbon, Catuai, and Caturra.

As mentioned, many naturally sweet coffee comes from Guatemala, so you can ensure that the Guatemalan Antigua Coffee has premium quality. They are perfect for medium roast blends, making your brew rich and velvety.

2. Kenya AA Coffee

The Kenya AA Coffee is one of the best premium coffee beans one can ever get. Coffee farmers grow this type of coffee on lands over 2,000 feet above sea level of elevation.

This coffee variety has a robust and full-bodied taste flavour with a rich and sweet aftertaste. It also has some fragrant floral notes with overtones similar to citrus fruits.

3. Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee

This coffee variety is popular for its fragrance and spicy and sweet flavours. It is grown in places with elevations between 5,800 to 6,600 feet above sea level, giving the beans a medium to light body.

Apart from its sweetness, the Ethiopian Yirgacheffe coffee has bright acidity and complex floral notes. It even has a taste similar to toasted coconuts, making it perfect when roasted on a medium-dark level.

4. Ethiopian Harrar Coffee

The Ethiopian Harrar Coffee is another coffee variety grown at elevations of 4,500 to 6,300 feet above sea level. Since this elevation has a cooler environment, coffee farmers are able to produce naturally sweet coffee varieties.

This Ethiopian coffee has an edgy and bold taste. It also has rich, dark chocolate notes, which blend perfectly with the coffee beans’ sweetness.

Frequently Asked Questions About Naturally Sweet Coffee

coffee beans
Coffee’s sweetness depends on its growing environment processing, roasting, and brewing.

What is the most naturally sweet coffee?

Coffea arabica has the highest level of natural sugars. But you need the ensure that you are choosing the light to medium roast Arabica coffee to avoid any bitter taste.

How can you make coffee naturally sweet?

While you can use sugar and sweeteners to make your brew sweet, you can never replace the sweetness brought by natural sugars like glucose and fructose. However, you can have healthy replacements for this natural sweetness.

Instead of using artificial sweeteners, you can use agave, stevia, honey, and maple syrup in your brew. You can also use coconut sugar if you want to add some coconut taste to your coffee.

Why is some coffee not sweet?

The taste of coffee varieties is affected by the environment they grow as well as the roasting and brewing process. Coffee varieties grown in lowlands are more bitter than those produced in an elevated environment.

The roast level of coffee beans also affects their sweetness. The darker the roast level, the more bitter your brew will become.

Final Thoughts

coffee beans

While a lot of people perceive coffee as bitter, naturally sweet coffee beans exist. These are coffees grown in highlands where the temperature is relatively cooler.

But regardless of your coffee’s sweetness or bitterness, a good cup of coffee is a perfect pair with food and snacks!

We hope that this article helped you find the sweet coffee beans for your next cup of coffee. If you have questions or suggestions, feel free to drop them in the comments, and we’ll try to answer them!