Is Espresso Less Acidic Than Coffee?

Ah, coffee: the magic elixir I look forward to every morning. It’s been around for centuries and has been our go-to option for a morning or afternoon pick-me-up. But with its popularity, comes the question about its acidity levels and how it affects our stomachs and teeth. You may have heard that espresso is less acidic than coffee, but is that really the case? Join us as we explore the scientific facts about espresso and coffee’s acidity levels.

It’s a known fact that coffee is the second most traded commodity in the world, and espresso is getting increasingly popular too. But what sets these two drinks apart in terms of acidity levels?

Is Espresso Less or More Acidic than Coffee?

espresso machine in action

To put it simply, coffee has a higher level of acidity than espresso. Why? Well, during the brewing process of coffee, more acid is extracted due to the extended brewing time, and espresso’s quick brew time extracts less acid.

But hold on. It’s also important to note that the type of coffee bean and roasting process can impact its acidity levels too. Dark-roasted coffee beans have lower acidity levels than light-roasted ones because the heat reduces the levels of chlorogenic acid, an important contributor to coffee’s acidity.

Can Espresso Help People with Acid Reflux?

coffee and acid reflux

For people who suffer from acid reflux or have a sensitive stomach, drinking coffee might be a real problem. In fact, I’ve had to rearrange my whole diet to cater to acid reflux.

In that sense, espresso can be our best friend as it has less acid in comparison to coffee. It’s because espresso is made by forcing hot water through finely ground coffee beans, creating that signature strong and concentrated flavor.  At first, the strong flavour tasted burnt to me, but my taste buds have acclimated and I’m appreciating the flavour of these espresso beans!

If you’re a coffee lover, you might have noticed that drinking it can sometimes leave a stain on your teeth. Well, come to find out that the culprit of this is the acidity from the coffee, which over time, can erode the protective layer of your tooth enamel. So if you want to ensure the longevity of your pearly whites, switching to a less acidic option like espresso can be a smart move.

When it comes to taste, espresso isn’t for everyone. It’s considered an acquired taste due to its strong, bitter flavor. Whereas coffee has a more subtle flavor and does not have the same intensity as espresso. If you do suffer from acid reflux, I suggest you give espresso a shot for a whole week (haha! Pun intended!)

What is the Average pH Level of Espresso vs Coffee?

The average pH level of coffee ranges from 4.85 to 5.10, making it more acidic as compared to other beverages. On the other hand, espresso has an average pH level of around 5.0 to 5.1, slightly less acidic than coffee.

These values can vary depending on the variety of the bean and how it is roasted and brewed. While the difference might seem minute, it can have a significant impact on those with acid sensitivity or those concerned about the enamel erosion of their teeth.

What are the Benefits of Drinking Espresso or Low Acid Coffee?

midday coffee break

Drinking espresso or low-acid coffee has both immediate and long-term benefits.

These options are less likely to cause acid reflux or other stomach discomfort, making them a much more suitable choice for people with sensitive stomachs or acid reflux disease. By reducing the risk of acid-related issues, individuals can enjoy their favorite beverage without worry.

Additionally, since espresso and low-acid coffee are less likely to erode tooth enamel, they may contribute to better dental health. This could mean fewer cavities and a more dazzling smile in the long run.

Let’s not forget about the rich, intense flavor that espresso offers. For coffee connoisseurs, the complexity and depth of espresso’s taste may provide a more fulfilling coffee experience.

Lastly, even though coffee and espresso contain caffeine, espresso’s lower acid content could lead to less jitteriness or sleep issues, providing a smoother energy boost. All these potential benefits make espresso or low-acid coffee an appealing option for both regular coffee drinkers and those with specific health considerations.

What are Some Ways to Lower Acidity in Espresso?

almond creamer being added to coffee

While espresso is generally less acidic than coffee, there are ways to further decrease its acidity, catering to those of us with extremely sensitive stomachs or acid reflux issues.

#1. Choose Low-Acid Coffee Beans

Some coffee bean varieties naturally have lower acidity levels. Beans from Brazil, Sumatra, and other regions are known for their low-acid content. Opt for these when buying your coffee.

#2. Opt for Dark Roasts

As mentioned earlier, dark-roasted beans tend to have less acidity than light-roasted ones. This is due to the longer roasting process, which breaks down the acid in the beans.

#3. Cold Brew Your Espresso

Cold brew coffee can significantly lower its acidity. This is because the cold water extracts less acid from the beans, resulting in a smoother, less acidic beverage.

#4. Add Milk or Cream

Dairy products are alkaline, which means they can neutralize some of the acid in your espresso. Adding a splash of milk or cream to your drink can make it less acidic.

#5. Make Golden Espresso

Golden espresso is made by removing the first and last parts of the espresso shot, which are the most acidic. You’re left with the ‘golden’ middle part of the shot, which is richer in flavor and lower in acidity.

Parting Words

All in all, espresso is definitely less acidic than coffee but it’s important to consider the type of bean and roast level too. For those looking for a less acidic option, a shot of espresso might be a go-to choice.