Why Does My Coffee Taste Burnt? Key Points To Watch Out!

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If you’re a coffee-lover, we’re sure you’ve had at least once in life experienced a peculiar burnt flavor in your beloved cup of coffee. There could be a variety of causes behind this phenomenon.

Let us help you discover the hidden culprits with our post on “Why does my coffee taste burnt?”, which will show you how to break out of the struggle!

Why Does My Coffee Taste Burnt?

No matter how cautious you are, there are still mysterious agents silently spoiling your delicious cup of coffee. Don’t let them keep ruining those moments of enjoyment. Swipe down for more information!

Stale Coffee Beans

Coffee beans, like any other plant, do not have an indefinite shelf life. You can indeed tell that they are glossy on the outside and that they still have a charming odor. In fact, from the moment they leave the roaster, those beans have started to lose flavor.

There is a scenario for you to note: When you let your coffee be exposed to room temperature air for 24 hours, 10% of its shelf life will fade away, which causes a significant taste loss.

And even if you store it carefully, the continuous gas release and oxidation of the coffee oil will still impair the flavor.

Things will get worse if you leave your beans in the fridge for a year or place them inappropriately. After all, these stale coffee beans might turn into the major culprit which causes a burned flavor of your lousy cup of coffee.

Read more: Why is my coffee bitter

Your Coffee Are Overheated

One of the most obvious reasons why your coffee tastes burnt is due to overheating. There is only a thin line between hot coffee and burnt coffee.

You may just want to keep your coffee warm, but unfortunately, miss out on a long exposure. Then the overheated coffee will be something unavoidable, which results in a distinctive burnt taste.

That’s why you should always keep your eyes on the brewing process. Otherwise, you may unintentionally cross that thin line mentioned above rapidly.

In case you want to be more certain about the brewing technique you employ, the coffee maker can be a factor most worth considering, especially to automatic drippers, which commonly grow with the bad reputation of producing burned, bitter coffee.

Indeed, this machine frequently utilizes boiling water and features channeling that disperses water unevenly across the coffee ground. These two elements could be the main reasons that create unpleasant tastes in your cup of coffee instead of a smooth and harmonious one.

The Roast Have Gone Bad

Another major reason for the burned flavor of coffee is that it burns. This situation occurs when people desire a strong roast but inadvertently overdo it.

For illustration, dark roasted coffee is usually a factor that needs attention in terms of overroasting. Because it has to travel through so many phases, this kind of coffee is more prone to be over-roasted.

On the contrary, lighter roasted coffee is less likely to burn, but it has a harsh flavor. Therefore in this scenario, a small flavor trade-off is undoubtedly necessary.

So can we do anything to fix the circumstance? Sadly, unless you roast the beans yourself, there isn’t much you can do to avoid it. You may assume that the procedure is easy to implement. Yet, the reality is way far from what you are thinking.

Although measuring and predicting the outcome of each roast is always extremely challenging, it doesn’t mean this issue is completely out of the question. Roasted beans in smaller amounts is a top-notch suggestion that we recommend you to try.

Since manufacturers often mass-produce dark-roasted coffees for increased output, which can feasibly cause burn, there’s no other better choice rather than small-batch roasts. But if even small packages are hard to come by, feel free to go for a lighter roast!

Water Problem

Water is another important component that might affect the quality of your coffee. Imagine the process of making coffee as a chemical equation. By inserting unknown elements, you can utterly screw up the equation.

As previously said, the temperature of the water is a huge problem to deal with. Whether your brewing water is too hot or too cold, it can produce a harsh, bitter taste anyway.

Then how to get the perfect water temperature for a tasty cup of coffee? People commonly follow the typical widespread notion of making coffee with boiling water. The ideal temperature for brewing is between 195º F and 205º F.

A slightly higher or lower temperature difference may not seem like much, but you’ll be amazed at how distinctive the coffee tastes when utilizing the appropriate water.

Besides, using tap water to prepare coffee might also result in a burnt flavor.

Watch Out Your Equipment

You might not feel compelled to clean your equipment all the time because you’re only making coffee, so it doesn’t feel dirty at all. But the truth is that a poorly-cared machine can produce awful coffee taste such as burned flavor.

Moreover, there is nothing on Earth immune to the perils of aging, and neither is your dear friend! That’s why it is time to learn how to clean your coffee maker so you may use it for longer and get better coffee quality.

Another thing to pay attention to is where you contain your coffee. Glass and ceramic mugs are ideal when you’re at home, while stainless steel travel mugs will best match long-distance trips.

How To Fix It?

To avoid the burnt taste of coffee, make sure that your beans are of good quality, particularly when you’re in the process of dark roasting.

Also, think about how to care for the coffee machine and use the correct one. A manual pour is a good option if you enjoy the flavor of filter coffee and want more control at the same time.

There are many other little things necessary to bear in mind, too. However, we’re pretty sure that by repeating, you can now understand how to take care of your coffee from the disturbing burnt flavor by learning about what causes it to deteriorate!

Conclusion

Why does my coffee taste burnt?” is a typical question that you can carry out by making a few little changes to your brewing process. But in some situations, there will be no feasible measures to apply. Nevertheless, even if there are certain factors over which you have no control, having more knowledge about your favorite drink never goes in vain, right?

Almost 20 years already spent committed to coffee and more than 3 years of experience as a barista at Starbucks. I graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutritional Science from the University of California, Berkeley. And then, I finished the Coffee Skills Program at the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA). ugvermont.com is a website that I dedicate my whole heart to sharing all knowledge related to coffee. Read more