If we had to name one thing we always have right after we wake up in the morning and can not start our day without, most people would say coffee. But have you ever woke up, sipped your coffee, and started feeling sick cause your coffee was too acidic? If you have, you are not the only one facing this situation. And that is why here I am today, to talk about how to make low acid coffee.
There goes a story that, long ago, a sheepherder noticed that a goat of his farm was not sleeping all night. When he tried to find out why this was happening, he noticed that his goat had some beans from a tree.
Whenever the goat ate those beans, it stayed all energized and did not sleep. And this is how an incredible bean, coffee, was invented. We do not know if the story is true, but none of us can start our day without coffee.
No matter how much we need coffee to kickstart our day, the wrong amount of acidity in our coffee can completely ruin our morning and make us sick at the same time.
What is low acid coffee?
Before knowing what low acid coffee is, we need to understand how acidity is measured. We use a pH scale to measure the acidity of anything.
A pH scale has numbers from 1 to 14 to measure if an element is acidic or basic when the pH value of something is below 7 that are acidic. In the same way, the pH score being above seven makes the product basic.
Usually, the usual black coffee's pH value is 3.5-4, which means regular coffee is slightly acidic.
Low acid coffee has a lower pH value than regular coffee, which is about 6. But the acidity of coffee depends on factors like the growing conditions, roasting method, brewing method, etc.
Factors affecting the acidity of coffee.
Growing conditions, the place where the coffee beans grow has an impact on the acidity of the coffee. The amount of minerals in the soil gets transferred to the coffee beans and defines the acidity of the coffee beans growing there.
The minerals make the coffee acidic, so the more minerals the soil contains, the more the coffee beans get acidic. The places where the soil contains lots of minerals will produce more acidic coffee beans than average.
Areas near volcanos or high areas from the land contain more mineral-rich soil, thus grow more acidic coffee.
The acidity of coffee also depends on how we are processing the coffee. We can process coffee in three ways to make it consumable-
- The washed process.
- The dry or natural process.
- Combination of the washed and dry process.
The washed process gives us a little more acidic coffee. But the way the coffee is being processed does not make much difference when it comes to decreasing the acidity of your coffee.
We know that coffee beans have to go through several processes to be consumable for us. We do not just pick up the coffee beans. Coffee beans need to go through processes like drying, roasting to make it consumable for us.
Coffee can be roasted in several ways, and the way the acidity of coffee depends highly on the way we are roasting our coffee. The low roasts are more acidic and have a fresh floral note where the high roasted coffee beans are low in acidity. The high roasting destroys the minerals in the coffee, and the coffee becomes less acidic.
Roasting on high temperature or roasting for a long time can be effective for reducing acidity in coffee.
Making coffee is an art. A mug of perfectly made coffee can only be compared to an artwork of an artist. That is why there are so many ways of brewing coffee. And all these different brewing technics make coffee of different tastes, aroma, and flavor.
It may sound surprising, but the way we brew our coffee also impacts our coffee acidity. The ways where the coffee grains remain raw and crusty give us less acidic coffee.
The finer the coffee grains are, the more they dilute in water and make our coffee acidic. From this, we can say that standard dip brew coffee or Aero press coffee is less acidic than French press brewed coffee.
In the standard dip method, hot water is just poured onto coffee grains, so the coffee does not get the time to get diluted well and remain less acidic. In the same manner, to make aero press coffee, we steep ground coffee into hot water for a few seconds.
Then filter with a filter paper, which helps to reduce the acidity of the coffee. In the French press brewing, the coffee grains are pressed with a pestle to mix and grind the coffee well.
This process gives us an excellent brew, which means comparatively more acidic coffee. The temperature of the water also has some impacts on the amount of acidity in the coffee.
Coffee grains mix well in hot water, which helps the minerals in coffee to dilute in water properly and give you more acidic coffee. On the other hand, regular or cold water gives less acidic coffee. As the minerals can not get mixed entirely in cold water, the coffee remains less acidic.
Why should we make less acidic coffee?
It is not actually 'necessary' to make your coffee less acidic unless you have any health problems. The amount of acidity in your coffee defines how your coffee would test.
The more acidic coffee is strong and the taste kind of pops out where the less acidic coffee is mild and softer to stomach.
So it depends on your test on how you like your coffee. But if you suffer from acid reflux, reducing acidity in coffee is important for you to get rid of getting sick, cause when someone has acid reflux, they get sick and suffer from problems like a burning pain, heartburn, chest pain, nausea, etc.
Whenever they have something acidic, any food or drink containing acid will not only cause harm to their body but also will be a reason for physical discomfort and pain.
So, if you suffer from acid reflux, acidic coffee can be harmful to you. For these reasons, you must know how to make low acid coffee.
A helpful guide to low acid coffee:
As mentioned earlier, some factors control the taste of your coffee; there are also ways to lower the acidity of your coffee.
You can lower your coffee acidity in every step of coffee production, like choosing the perfect roast, selecting the ideal brewing method, etc.
- Choose the right coffee: As the amount of minerals in your coffee affects your coffee's acidity, you should always go for the coffee with fewer minerals because an excessive amount of minerals will make your coffee acidic.
- Go for the perfect roast: If you are trying to lower your coffee acidity, you must choose highly roasted coffee. As the minerals in coffee get destroyed by roasting, those can be a perfect choice for your less acidic coffee.
- Choose the right brewing method: If you want your coffee to be low in acid, choose your brewing method wisely. Go for the coffee with the rough and coarse ground, which will give you perfect coffee low in acid.
How to neutralize the acid in coffee?
We discussed choosing the right coffee for low acid coffee. But what if you could not select the perfect low acidic coffee for you? Or could not find one in the shop? No worries because now we are going to know the ways to neutralize highly acidic coffee.
- Mix milk: Milk is high in calcium, which makes milk a base. So, mixing cow milk can lightly neutralize your acidic coffee. Another option that will be better than cow milk is almond milk, as they contain a good amount of calcium. Mixing almond milk can help to neutralize your coffee.
- Mix eggshells: Even though it sounds weird, eggshells can be an excellent neutralizer for your acidic coffee. First, you will have to start with properly washed and cleaned eggshells, dry them, and crush them into powder. Mixing this powder to your coffee option neutralizes your Acidic coffee. Eggshells contain calcium, which is a basic element. So, mixing eggshells to coffee can help reduce acidity from your coffee.
- Mix baking powder: Mixing a small amount (about 1/4 teaspoon) of baking powder will make your coffee less acidic as the pH value of baking powder is above 7, which makes it a base.
- Mixing ground cinnamon: An adequate amount of ground cinnamon in your coffee will lower the amount of acid secretion in your stomach. This one will not neutralize your coffee. Instead, this will create a comparatively neutral state in your stomach before you consume your coffee.
By following these rules of choosing the perfect coffee and neutralizing the acidity of your coffee, you will be able to have coffee.
While human bodies have a PH value of 7.4 (around neutral), tap water 6.5-8.5, coffee is generally around PH 4.3-5, which is mildly acidic. Usually, any food or beverage more acidic than our body system can trigger digestive uneasiness, inflammation, and “burning” side effects like acid reflux or heartburn.
An alkaline diet is rich in vegetables, herbs, fruit, soybeans, and tofu–more plants, fewer animal products. Over-ingested sugar, alcohol, grains, meat, chicken or dairy, and you’re into the higher acid territory.
We have correlated both roasting duration and temperature with acidity. One study showed that we roasted the longer and hotter coffee beans, the lower their chlorogenic acid levels. This suggests that lighter roasts are higher in acidity, while darker roasts are lower.
Dark roasts are much fewer acidic than lighter ones. Also, drying the beans whole, especially while still in the pulp, helps to reduce the acidity. Arabica beans have considerably less acid than Robusta beans.
Black and green tea is less acidic than coffee. One analysis identified that coffee was less acidic than lemon tea and more acidic than black. We found black tea to have a pH of 6.37, while coffee had a pH of 5.35. The acidity level for tea and coffee also depends on where you’re getting it from.
A cup of coffee with high acidity can be tremendous and energizing if you do not suffer from acid reflux. An acidic cup of coffee can give you a strong and popped up a taste of caffeine.
If you have health problems by having acidic coffee, you would not have to give up coffee. But, now you know how to make low acid coffee, you are covered. You will be able to have this amazing drink without worrying about your health.