What is White Coffee and how to prepare it?

Have you already tried white coffee or are you wondering what it is? You will have to keep reading to discover this new trend in coffee. You can prepare it at home or drink it in a café in your city. Oh, and it is not white!

What is white coffee?

Well, let’s start with the fact that it is not white coffee, it is not coffee with milk or a coffee cocktail.

So, what is white coffee? White coffee is coffee that has been removed from the roaster before the first “crack” of the roasting process occurs. In the evolution of the bean during the roasting process, the color goes from a very light green to almost black.

When the coffee beans are removed before the first crack, they have a yellowish color, since they have begun to roast, and this is what derived in its name “white coffee”.

This means that white coffee beans and black coffee beans are the same, but roasted at different temperatures and times.

It was discovered that roasting the coffee beans at a lower temperature improved the taste. This partial roasting is what gives the coffee beans their “white” color, but it is very difficult to roast white coffee and achieve the adequate taste.

Roasting coffee is a true art and requires special knowledge and skills. Otherwise, you can easily ruin it.

Where does white coffee come from? The Origins

White coffee from Lebanon or white coffee from Malaysia should not be confused with roasted white coffee beans. The first two are a way of preparing coffee, for example:

Malaysian white coffee is mixed with margarine and condensed milk when preparing the beverage.

To prepare white coffee from Lebanon, the coffee beans must be roasted with margarine, and the beverage is served with a spoonful of orange blossom and a spoonful of sugar.

The white coffee we are talking about in this post was born in Yemen (Western Asia) around 100 years ago.

In Yemen the coffee beans were roasted at 165ºC and ground with special grinders, since the beans are harder and cannot be ground with the conventional grinders we have at home.

Once elaborated, it is a pale beige colored coffee, with a touch of nutty flavor and very little bitterness.

It is recommended to prepare it in a pressure coffee maker such as an espresso, Italian or aeropress.

In Yemen, it is traditionally served with “hawaij”, a mixture of spices from the country. Which you can find in almost any coffee specialty store or online here.

What does white coffee taste like?

White coffee has a particular flavor, probably due to the beans used or the roasting process. Normally, the taste of white coffee is described as nutty, with a touch of acidity and low bitterness.

The roasting process is responsible for the elimination of the bitterness and particular flavors that characterize white coffee.

How to make white coffee? Roasting

White coffee is elaborated by roasting the coffee beans at 165ºC approximately and during half the time that normal coffee is roasted.

Normal coffee is roasted between 232ºC and 250ºC.

You can roast it at home if you are an expert and have the time and the desire. If you are more practical, you can buy it online or in your favorite specialized store.
How is white coffee prepared? The beverage

White coffee is prepared at high pressure. The best way to prepare it is in an espresso machine, not in a filter coffee maker. You can also prepare it in an Italian coffee maker.

Here are the steps:

  • Grind white coffee beans to a brown sugar consistency. Keep in mind that the beans of this coffee are harder and you will need a special or more powerful grinder than the normal ones sold for home use. If you do not have one or you are afraid of breaking yours, buy the coffee already ground.
  • Place the ground coffee in the holder of your espresso machine without compacting it.
  • Prepare it as a normal espresso or long coffee, according to the options of your coffee maker and your preferences.
  • Add Hawaij for the complete experience. It is a spice blend that includes cumin, black pepper mainly, and also cardamom, coriander, turmeric, cinnamon, ginger and cloves.

You can also prepare it in a pod coffee maker with reusable capsules from Keuring or Nespresso.

Does white coffee have more caffeine?

Yes, white coffee has more caffeine than regular coffee. The reason is due to the roasting process. But how much more caffeine can it have?

The caffeine in coffee is measured by its density, which changes depending on how long the beans have been roasted, the longer the beans have been roasted, the less caffeine they will have. This means that normal coffee has less caffeine than white coffee.

But how much more caffeine can a less roasted coffee have, probably 5% more. Actually, there is no scientific study that says how much caffeine is lost with the different types of roasting.

Is white coffee healthy?

Now that we have covered everything from the taste of white coffee to its origin, let’s take a look at its health properties.

There have been arguments that white coffee is healthier than regular coffee. The problem is that white coffee contains more chlorogenic acid than regular coffee due to its light roasting levels.

It is true that chlorogenic acid is very healthy and has been linked to numerous health benefits over time. Even so, the excessive amount of chlorogenic acid remaining in white coffee has not been adequately studied before this beverage can be labeled as healthy.

What is the difference between regular and white coffee?

As mentioned above, the main difference between regular coffee and white coffee is the roasting process.

White coffee is roasted for less time (about 50% less) than regular coffee.

This process produces a different result and changes the taste and color of the coffee.
What are the benefits of drinking white coffee?

There are people who claim that white coffee is healthier than regular coffee. The reason for this statement is that by roasting white coffee beans at a lower temperature, more antioxidants are preserved.

One of the antioxidants that is said to be preserved is chlorogenic acid. Not only does this act as an antioxidant, but it also slows down the absorption of glucose if you drink it after a meal. However, there are no scientific studies to support these claims.

There are some brands that claim to have 50% more caffeine than regular coffee, but if you’re lucky it’s 5%, and I don’t think this is a factor in deciding between one type of roast or another.

Another advantage attributed to white coffee is that it does not stain your teeth as much as black coffee because it is lighter.

Where can I find the best white coffee?

If you don’t want to go to a coffee shop, you may have trouble getting white coffee. You can always buy it online, and fortunately most stores in certain countries now sell white coffees.

You may see small artisanal coffee shops offering this service, but times are changing and soon big names like Starbucks will probably add it to their menu. A cup of white coffee prepared well by a skilled barista may taste better than something you order online.

How do you drink white coffee?

Let’s talk about serving a good cup of white coffee.

White coffee can be served iced or hot. Because of its thinner body, many people like to add milk. Almond milk, as mentioned above, is a great addition.

White roasted coffee is often served as a latte. To get the most out of it, you can add vanilla, caramel, or chocolate. Hazelnut, which has a similar flavor, is also an excellent combination with white coffee.

There are no rules for drinking white coffee. You get better at brewing it by trying different styles and blends, and you can expand your palate by trying many different types of coffee. If it helps, a local coffee shop introduced cinnamon and brown sugar to a roasted white coffee, and from what I’ve heard, the taste was pure heaven!

The bottom line

While white coffee may not be very popular in some regions, give it time and definitely try it. It may just replace your favorite beverage.

Its most appreciated aspect is its nutty flavor, low acidity, and overall smoothness. Many people who regularly drink white coffee say they prefer it to regular coffee. You can call it an exaggeration, or maybe they are just the exception and not the rule, but the important thing is that it is a delicious cup of coffee with incredible flavors.