12 Best Coffee for Espresso Machines: Top Enthusiast’s Pick

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Dialing in the perfect shot of espresso is an art form – one that’s influenced by countless factors from grind size to water temperature, but the most crucial component is, of course, the coffee itself.

With a well-versed background in the world of coffee research and extensive testing, I understand that choosing the proper coffee for your espresso machine is instrumental in achieving that balanced, full-bodied, aromatic cup you crave. 

My top choice? The Volcanica Espresso Dark Roast Coffee. This blend offers a harmonious interplay of sweet caramel, complex spice, and an enticingly dense intensity, all underpinned by a subtle, light acidity – a symphony of flavors that hits all the right notes for an espresso.

In this roundup review, we’ll delve into the distinct characteristics of various coffee types, each boasting unique features and benefits.

Whether it’s a specific flavor profile, origin, or roasting style you seek, we’ve got the “best for” each category lined up, ensuring your next espresso experience will be nothing short of extraordinary.

Our Top Picks



Volcanica Espresso Dark Roast Coffee

Volcanica Espresso Dark Roast Coffee

Light Acidity
Whole Bean


Lavazza Super Crema Espresso Roast

Lavazza Super Crema Espresso Roast

Whole bean
Light-Medium Roast

Best Premium Choice

KOA Estate 100% Kona Coffee

KOA Estate 100% Kona Coffee

Whole bean
Dark Roast
Classic taste of Hawaii


illy Classico Ground Espresso Coffee

illy Classico Ground Espresso Coffee

Medium Roast


Stumptown Coffee Roasters

Stumptown Coffee Roasters

Whole bean
Medium Roast


Peet’s Arabian Mocha Sanani

Peet’s Arabian Mocha Sanani

Whole bean
Dark Roast


Lifeboost Coffee Espresso Beans

Lifeboost Coffee Espresso Beans

Whole bean
Dark Roast
Single Origin


Starbucks Dark Roast Espresso

Starbucks Dark Roast Espresso

Whole bean
Dark Roast


Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat Espresso

Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat Espresso

Whole bean
Medium Roast


Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger

Kicking Horse Coffee, Cliff Hanger

Whole bean
Medium Roast


Coffee Bros Espresso Roast

Coffee Bros Espresso Roast

Whole bean
Dark Roast


Death Wish Coffee

Death Wish Coffee

Dark Roast

The 12 Best Coffee for Espresso Machines

1. Volcanica Espresso Dark Roast Coffee

Best Overall

When choosing the top-performing coffee for espresso, the Volcanica Espresso Dark Roast Coffee has earned our highest recommendation.

This unique blend brings forth a well-rounded profile, featuring sweet caramel, complex spice, and a signature dense intensity, all while maintaining a light acidity. The beans’ overall balance is extraordinary, offering a harmonious blend of flavors that make for a superbly satisfying shot of espresso.

While testing this coffee, I found it provided a genuinely immersive experience. The roasted coffee’s aroma was an intoxicating prelude to the treat that was to come, the complex spicy fragrance mingling perfectly with the darker caramel tones.

Upon brewing, the espresso was wealthy and full-bodied. Its distinct taste – a dense caramel-like sweetness combined with the intriguing interplay of spices – made each sip an adventure, a sensory journey that invigorated as much as it delighted.

Volcanica’s offering stands out for its intense flavor profile and balance when juxtaposed with other contenders on this list. Its complexity outshines most rivals, delivering a gourmet coffee experience that’s hard to beat. While the beans may be a bit oily for super-automatic espresso machines, they worked splendidly with various other brewing methods, proving their versatility.

Catering to a broad range of taste preferences, the Volcanica Coffee was a consistent crowd-pleaser during testing. Its surprisingly light acidity is a bonus for those with sensitive stomachs, while its robust flavors will surely satisfy those searching for a deeper, more complex coffee profile. 

Despite the lack of organic certification and uncertainty surrounding the origin, this coffee’s outstanding performance across testing parameters makes it an unequivocal winner, promising a remarkable espresso experience.

Its perfect balance and signature intensity make Volcanica Espresso the best choice for espresso lovers.

What We Like
Perfectly balanced
Low acidity
Signature intensity and complex spicy aroma
What We Don’t Like
Oily beans
Non-organic coffee

2. Lavazza Super Crema Whole Bean Coffee Blend

BEST Consistent Performer
Lavazza Super Crema

Diving into the world of espresso-friendly coffee beans, we encounter a familiar name that continues to impress – the Lavazza Super Crema Whole Bean Coffee Blend. This blend is delicately aromatic with a mild and creamy flavor, an inviting start to any espresso experience.

Originating from an undisclosed blend of beans, Lavazza’s Super Crema boasts a unique flavor profile characterized by brown sugar and hazelnut notes. This makes it a genuinely delectable coffee blend, delivering a natural sweetness without additional sugar. It’s a blend that, upon first sip, brings warmth and comfort throughout the cup. 

While the blend lacks specific organic or fair-trade certifications, Lavazza’s century-long dedication to creating quality coffee products cannot be underestimated. It’s worth mentioning, however, that their commitment to sustainable coffee production is evident in their various initiatives.

I was struck by how well-balanced the flavors were when testing this coffee. The inherent sweetness paired wonderfully with the nutty undertones, creating a delightfully smooth espresso. This blend is excellent for those preferring a more nuanced coffee experience without aggressive bitterness or acidity.

The ease of achieving a thick and compact crema was another standout feature. It’s in the crema where the essence of an espresso lies, and Lavazza’s Super Crema truly lives up to its name. With just the proper pressure from the espresso machine, you can achieve a beautifully golden, creamy top layer that seals in the rich, aromatic flavors below.

The Lavazza Super Crema delivers a consistently enjoyable espresso experience, balancing delicate sweetness and mild creaminess. While it may not be the boldest choice, it’s a reliable, high-quality blend that will appeal to a wide range of coffee lovers.

What We Like
Rich taste
Easily attainable thick and compact crema
Natural sweetness without sugar
What We Don’t Like
Limited availability
Lacking full flavor

3. Estate Dark Roast Whole Bean 100% Kona Coffee

BEST The Premium Selection
Kona Coffee Estate Dark Roast

For coffee enthusiasts seeking luxury in their espresso experience, the Estate Dark Roast Whole Bean 100% Kona Coffee is our premium selection. Sourced exclusively from a single estate in Kona, Hawaii, this unique coffee promises a taste of the tropics with each brew. 

The beans offer a classic taste of Hawaii – a rich and aromatic experience that leaves a lasting impression. This dark roast coffee delivers a smooth, full-bodied flavor with low acidity, making it a perfect after-dinner or evening indulgence. 

There’s something to be said about single-origin coffee. The consistency in quality and flavor that comes with it is often unparalleled, and this 100% Kona Coffee is no exception. Each bean carries the essence of the fertile volcanic soil it was grown in, lending a distinctive taste that sets it apart from others on this list.

In terms of personal experience, this coffee was indeed a treat. Brewing was akin to taking a sensory journey to Hawaii, with the rich, smooth flavor and the enticing aroma taking center stage. This coffee provides a unique experience for espresso lovers, yielding a thick, rich crema that further enhances the coffee’s overall flavor.

The full-bodied nature of this coffee also makes it ideal for those who like its espresso strong and rich. It also shines when used in milk-based coffee drinks, where its distinctive flavor profile comes to the fore against the creaminess of the milk.

While the higher price point may deter some, it’s worth noting that the quality of the beans and the distinct flavor they impart make it a worthwhile investment. The Estate 100% Kona Coffee is a premium selection offering a unique espresso experience worth every penny.

What We Like
Single estate coffee
Rich and smooth taste
Fresh coffee experience and enjoyable aroma
What We Don’t Like
Higher price
Lower caffeine content
Limited availability

4. Illy Classico Ground Espresso Coffee

BEST Convenient Choice
Illy Classico Espresso

Next up on our curated list is the illy Classico Ground Espresso Coffee – an option that beautifully combines quality and convenience for the espresso lover on the go. 

Unlike our previous selections, this coffee comes pre-ground, a feature that saves time without compromising flavor. Its medium roast level results in a balanced blend that boasts a symphony of delicate notes of caramel, orange blossom, and jasmine – a captivating combination that will engage all your senses. 

What sets illy’s blend apart is its composition. A meticulous selection process sees nine different types of Arabica beans worldwide coming together to create this blend. The result is a rich and aromatic coffee that’s all-natural and consistently high in quality. 

During my testing, the convenience of using pre-ground espresso coffee beans was immediately apparent, significantly reducing the time between opening the package and enjoying a flavorful cup of espresso. Despite being pre-ground, illy’s blend doesn’t lose an ounce of freshness, offering a smooth taste and a lingering, pleasant aftertaste.

The medium roast level of this coffee makes it a versatile choice, perfect for an espresso that is not overly bold nor too light. It pulls a consistent shot with a lovely crema, and the unique flavor profile with notes of caramel and floral hints adds an element of surprise to each sip. 

The illy Classico Espresso is an excellent choice for those seeking a delicious, high-quality espresso without the added step of grinding beans. It’s the perfect solution for busy coffee lovers who refuse to compromise on taste, showcasing that convenience and quality can go hand in hand.

What We Like
Smooth taste
High-quality blend
What We Don’t Like
Limited availability

5. Stumptown Coffee Roasters Hair Bender

Best Flavor Complexity
Stumptown Coffee Roasters

For those of you with a palate that craves complexity and character in your espresso, we present Stumptown Coffee Roasters’ Hair Bender. This medium roast whole bean coffee is a vibrant blend that holds its own regarding flavor diversity.

Hair Bender boasts an intriguing blend of coffee sourced from three different regions – Central and South America, East Africa, and Indonesia. This multiregional approach results in a complex and harmonious flavor profile that features sweet citrus, milk chocolate, and caramel, offering a balanced yet diverse taste.

The coffee’s name, Hair Bender, is as unique as its flavor profile, evoking curiosity and drawing you into its charm. Stumptown Coffee Roasters prides itself on producing high-quality coffee, and this blend certainly upholds that standard. 

When I brewed an espresso shot with this blend, the complexity of the flavors was evident. It started with a refreshing hint of sweet citrus, mellowing to a rich milk chocolate body and ending with a smooth caramel finish. The flavors were distinctly identifiable yet perfectly harmonized, making each sip an experience to savor.

The coffee’s medium roast level also makes it ideal for those who like their espresso strong yet not overpowering. It’s equally enjoyable as a straight shot of espresso or in milk-based drinks, where its complex flavor profile can shine against the creamy backdrop.

In conclusion, if you seek an espresso experience that takes you on a journey of flavors, Stumptown Coffee Roasters’ Hair Bender is your perfect travel companion. This coffee doesn’t just bend hair – it bends conventions, inviting you to embrace the unexpected with each brew.

What We Like
Complex blend
Harmonious flavor profile
High-quality coffee
What We Don’t Like
No information on aroma

6. Peet’s Arabian Mocha Sanani

BEST Single-Origin
Peet’s Arabian Mocha Sanani

For those who cherish the singularity and uniqueness of single-origin coffee, our recommendation is Peet’s Arabian Mocha Sanani.

This coffee is sourced exclusively from Yemen, a region known for its rich coffee history and unique growing conditions. The result? A coffee that provides an exciting and distinct tasting experience.

The dark roast level of the Arabian Mocha Sanani introduces an exciting interplay between spice, date, and bittersweet chocolate flavors. Each sip transports you to the rugged terrains of Yemen, offering a taste of the region’s coffee heritage.

What sets this coffee apart is its exceedingly complex aroma, which builds anticipation before the first sip. The coffee is also hand-roasted, a traditional process that imparts a distinctive, full-bodied flavor, making every cup feel special.

In my personal experience, brewing an espresso shot with this coffee was a delightful experience. The spiciness, balanced with the sweetness of dates and the bitter edge of dark chocolate, delivered a pleasing contrast of flavors. The intensity of the dark roast was balanced perfectly by the smoothness of the coffee, preventing it from becoming too overpowering.

While it’s an excellent choice for espresso, this coffee also pairs well with various brewing methods, offering versatility. However, its complex flavor profile truly shines when brewed as an espresso, highlighting the subtle nuances that make this coffee special.

In conclusion, Peet’s Arabian Mocha Sanani is a superb choice for coffee connoisseurs who appreciate the unique flavors and character that single-origin coffees bring.

It’s a coffee that takes you on a journey, offering a unique taste of Yemen’s rich coffee tradition in every cup.

What We Like
Full-bodied flavor
Complex aroma
Hand roasted
What We Don’t Like
High price
Limited availability
Not organic

7. Lifeboost Coffee Espresso Beans

Lifeboost Coffee Espresso Beans

Coffee enthusiasts who are sensitive to acid or simply prefer a smoother, gentler cup will find their match in Lifeboost Coffee Espresso Beans.

This particular brand takes special care in its growing and processing methods to ensure a low acid content, making it an excellent choice for those with dietary restrictions or sensitive stomachs.

These beans are dark roasted, providing a bold and rich flavor balanced with depth and complexity. The organic certification of these beans is a testament to Lifeboost’s commitment to healthy and sustainable farming practices.

The personal experience of brewing and tasting this coffee was nothing short of delightful. While the brand doesn’t specify the specific tasting notes, the espresso shot produced a satisfyingly smooth taste with a rich flavor profile. The low acidity made the cup easy to drink, even for those sensitive to more acidic coffees.

The whole beans also provide the flexibility of grinding at home, letting you customize your grind size to suit your espresso machine and personal taste. This way, you can extract the maximum flavor from the beans and enjoy the freshness of the coffee.

Lifeboost’s Espresso Beans stand out as a robust, low-acid option compared to other brands. While some argue that higher acidity can contribute to a brighter, more vibrant flavor, Lifeboost proves that regular coffee beans can still be full-bodied and flavorful without the acid punch.

In conclusion, Lifeboost Coffee Espresso Beans is commendable for those seeking a low-acid coffee option. Its rich, robust flavor and organic certification make it a brand worth trying for your next espresso brewing experience.

What We Like
Low acid
Specialty beans
3rd party tested
What We Don’t Like
No tasting notes provided
Relatively high price
Limited availability

8. Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso

Best Easily Accessible Pick
Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso

If convenience and accessibility are high on your priority list, then Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso — 100% Arabica should be on your radar. As a brand synonymous with coffee culture, Starbucks offers a robust, full-bodied dark roast perfect for espresso.

This Starbucks blend consists of 100% Arabica beans sourced from Latin America and Asia-Pacific, creating a coffee rich in flavor with a strong, bold aroma. The rich molasses and caramel flavors give this coffee a distinctive, robust, wonderfully satisfying taste.

Having brewed and tasted this coffee, it’s clear why it’s a crowd favorite. The rich and dark flavors produced a robust shot of espresso with a delightful caramel sweetness. The bold aroma further enhanced the overall tasting experience. The strength and depth of flavor were impressive, and the quality of the beans was evident in every sip.

Even though it’s widely available and convenient, this coffee holds its own against many boutique coffee brands. Despite its commercial availability, it still delivers on quality and flavor. Moreover, as a whole bean coffee, you can grind the beans yourself and tailor your grind to your brewing preference, which is a massive plus for any espresso lover.

In conclusion, Starbucks Coffee is a reliable choice for those seeking a convenient yet high-quality coffee for their espresso machine. Its rich flavor profile and easy availability make it an excellent coffee choice.

What We Like
Rich flavor
High-quality beans
What We Don’t Like
No specified tasting notes

9. Intelligentsia Coffee, Medium Roast Whole Bean Coffee – Black Cat Espresso

Best For Sophisticated Palates
Intelligentsia Coffee, Medium Roast Whole Bean Coffee

Intelligentsia’s Black Cat Espresso, a medium roast whole bean coffee, is a delightful treat for the more discerning coffee drinkers. It’s a product of Intelligentsia’s dedication to quality and craftsmanship, reflected in the complex flavor profile and high-quality beans.

The Black Cat Espresso blend showcases notes of dark chocolate, ripe cherry, and brown sugar. It’s a well-crafted, multi-layered taste experience that evolves on the palate. The company doesn’t specify the origin of the beans, but the complex flavor hints at a carefully curated blend of high-quality beans from various regions.

Upon brewing, the experience was nothing short of exceptional. The medium roast brought out the subtleties of the flavors, with each note distinct yet harmoniously blended. The espresso shot was robust and flavorful, with the dark chocolate and ripe cherry notes singing through, complemented by the sweetness of brown sugar.

Compared to others, Intelligentsia’s Black Cat Espresso stands out for its complex flavor profile and consistent quality. It is well-suited for those who appreciate the nuances of different flavors and enjoy exploring complex taste profiles.

This coffee also offers flexibility in terms of brewing methods. Though it’s excellent as an espresso, its balanced profile also works well for other brewing methods.

In conclusion, if you’re a coffee lover with a sophisticated palate and an appreciation for complex flavor profiles, Intelligentsia’s Black Cat Espresso is worth a try. It promises a memorable and enjoyable coffee experience.

What We Like
Complex flavor
High-quality beans
Direct Trade mission
What We Don’t Like
Varying freshness
Higher price

10. Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso

Best Organic Pick
Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso

If you’re seeking a delicious coffee grown in harmony with nature, look no further than the Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso. This coffee stands out for its commitment to organic farming and fair trade, ensuring that your coffee experience is pleasurable, environmentally, and socially responsible.

Kicking Horse’s Cliff Hanger Espresso is a medium roast coffee featuring a unique flavor profile. The blackcurrant, milk chocolate, and brown sugar description is spot on — it delivers a silky and complex coffee experience with a wild berry syrup hint and a smooth cocoa finish. This blend combines beans sourced from Africa, Central & South America, capturing the diverse flavors of these coffee-growing regions.

When brewed, this coffee surprised me with its balance and complexity. The fruity notes of blackcurrant came through beautifully, followed by the comforting sweetness of milk chocolate and brown sugar. It was smooth, satisfying, and surprisingly bright, making for a lovely espresso shot.

Compared to other organic options on the market, Kicking Horse Coffee stands out due to its well-balanced and multi-layered flavor profile. Its organic and fair trade certification also adds to its appeal, showing the company’s commitment to ethical sourcing and sustainable practices.

This blend performs exceptionally well in espresso machine brewing, highlighting its nuanced flavor profile. The bright notes of blackcurrant add an exciting twist to the espresso shot, while the smooth cocoa finish leaves a satisfying aftertaste.

In conclusion, Kicking Horse Coffee is an excellent choice for those looking for organic and ethically-sourced coffee that doesn’t compromise on taste or quality. This coffee delivers on all fronts – flavor, aroma, and sustainability.

What We Like
Rich flavor
Certified organic
What We Don’t Like
Higher price
Limited availability

11. Coffee Bros Espresso Roast

Best Artisanal Experience
Coffee Bros Espresso Roast

Regarding small-batch espresso roasts, the attention to detail and the level of craftsmanship can genuinely elevate your coffee experience. The Coffee Bros, Espresso Roast, is a perfect example, promising an artisanal experience for all coffee lovers.

Hailing from Colombia and Ethiopia, this espresso roast captures the distinct characteristics of these coffee-growing regions, offering a unique blend of flavors. It has notes of juicy strawberry, sugar cane, and vanilla and promises a bold, vibrant, and exciting flavor.

Upon tasting this coffee, I was immediately struck by the intensity of its flavor. The sweetness of the strawberry and sugar cane was beautifully contrasted by the warmth of the vanilla, offering a complex yet harmonious taste profile. It was a delight to savor, leaving a lasting impression on my palate.

What sets this coffee apart from its competitors is the care that goes into its production. The Coffee Bros hand-roast their beans in small batches, ensuring that each pack delivers on their high standards of quality and taste. Although its description of flavors may be limited, it is in this simplicity that the espresso roast truly shines, allowing its quality and craftsmanship to take center stage.

When it comes to brewing, this coffee is designed explicitly for espresso machines, producing an excellent shot every time. The bold and distinctive flavors make it a great choice for those who like their coffee strong and flavorful. However, it can also be enjoyed as a latte or cappuccino, where its unique flavor profile can still shine through.

In conclusion, the Coffee Bros Espresso Roast is a fantastic choice if you’re seeking a unique coffee experience that promises quality and flavor. Its artisanal approach to coffee production is sure to impress, offering an espresso roast that is as enjoyable as it is memorable.

What We Like
What We Don’t Like
Limited flavor description

12. Death Wish Coffee Organic and Fair Trade Espresso Roast

For those coffee lovers who crave that extra caffeine punch to kick-start their day, Death Wish Coffee, Organic and Fair Trade Espresso Roast Ground Coffee, could just be your new best friend. The name is not just a marketing gimmick; this coffee prides itself on being one of the strongest in the world.

With its origins undisclosed, the mystery around this coffee’s pedigree only adds to its appeal. It delivers a robust flavor profile characterized by dark chocolate and smoky notes that live up to its death-defying brand name. 

My personal encounter with Death Wish was an adventure, to say the least. The first sip greeted me with a bold, almost rebellious flavor that lingered on the palate. The dark chocolate notes were deep and satisfying, while the smoky undertones added a unique complexity. This coffee is unapologetically strong and definitely not for the faint of heart!

What adds an extra admiration for Death Wish is its commitment to organic and fair trade practices. This ensures your coffee is ethically sourced and free from synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. 

Regarding brewing, this ground coffee is optimized for espresso machines. That said, its strong flavor can also cut through the milk of lattes and cappuccinos for those who prefer a more indulgent coffee treat. 

In terms of taste preference, this coffee is tailored for those who love a strong, robust flavor that resonates with every sip. It’s for the adventurous, those ready to leap into the unknown, or, more accurately, the incredibly caffeinated!

To sum it up, Death Wish Coffee Espresso Roast Ground Coffee is a beast of a brew that can energize even the groggiest of mornings. A couple of cups of this, and you’ll be ready to conquer whatever the day throws your way!

Comprehensive Buying Guide for Choosing the Perfect Coffee for Your Espresso Machine

Diving into the expansive universe of coffee varieties, flavors, and blends can feel like a monumental challenge, mainly when you aim to craft the perfect espresso within the comforts of your home.

With the help of this detailed buying guide, we aim to unravel the complexities and key considerations of buying the best coffee for your espresso machine.

Type of Coffee Beans

The coffee bean type dramatically influences the flavor of your espresso. The coffee world primarily acknowledges two kinds of coffee beans for espresso, each with a unique taste: Arabica and Robusta.

  • Arabica Beans: Generally favored in superior quality coffee blends, Arabica beans are celebrated for their mild and sophisticated flavor. If you are inclined towards tasting subtle notes and unique characteristics of coffee, Arabica beans will likely be your choice.
  • Robusta Beans: Notable for their substantial caffeine content and robust flavor, Robusta beans are an excellent choice if you seek a potent, hearty coffee. These beans frequently form the core of espresso blends.

Roast Intensity

The intensity of the roast deeply influences your coffee’s flavor profile. Understanding the difference between light, medium, and dark roasts can elevate your espresso brewing experience to a new level.

  • Light Roast: Lightly roasted Beans hold onto most of their original coffee character. They present higher acidity fuller body, and typically unveil more floral and fruity notes.
  • Medium Roast: These beans strike an attractive balance between acidity and coffee’s rich, intrinsic flavor. Medium roasted beans are often considered smooth and well-rounded, pleasing to most palates.
  • Dark Roast: Dark roasted beans have a distinctly bold, robust flavor and diminished acidity. Because of their intense flavor profile that balances well with milk, they are frequently used in espresso, lattes, and cappuccinos.

Coffee beans origin

The geographic origin of the coffee beans plays a pivotal role in defining their flavor profile. Beans harvested in different regions around the globe offer a vast spectrum of flavors, allowing you to tailor your choice to your specific taste preferences.

  • Latin American Coffee: This type of coffee is often characterized by the flavors of nuts and chocolate, with a hint of sweetness.
  • African Coffee: African beans are recognized for their fruity and floral flavors, providing a refreshing taste profile.
  • Asian Coffee: Asian coffees are generally full-bodied, often carrying earthy or spicy flavors that provide a robust coffee experience.

Organic vs. Non-Organic Coffee

The choice between organic and non-organic coffee depends on your lifestyle preferences. If environmental impact and chemical-free products matter to you, organic coffee is the way to go.

  • Organic Coffee: These beans are grown without synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. Choosing organic supports sustainable farming practices and often offers a cleaner taste.
  • Non-Organic Coffee: These beans might be treated with pesticides and fertilizers. While they still can produce excellent coffee, they carry different eco-friendly credentials than their organic counterparts.

Remember, the quest for the best coffee for your espresso machine can be as thrilling and rewarding as you make it. Be bold in exploring and experimenting with diverse beans, roast intensities, and beans from different origins.

You’ll likely discover a combination that fits your taste profile perfectly and elevates your home-brewed espresso experience to new heights.

The verdict

In conclusion, the quest for the perfect coffee blend for your espresso machine might seem daunting, but this roundup should give you a head start.

Our in-depth research and testing process has led us to an undisputed winner — the Volcanica Espresso Dark Roast Coffee. It triumphed with its remarkable balance of strength and smoothness, its meticulously sourced beans, and a dark roast that brings out the full potential of the coffee. 

Every coffee brand we reviewed has unique charm and appeal, each standing out for its flavor profile, roast level, or bean origin. Whether you’re after an organic option like the Kicking Horse Coffee or a specialist blend like the Dark Roast Whole Bean Kona Coffee, there’s a perfect blend for everyone’s palate and brewing method.

Ready to upgrade your espresso experience? Click on the product links in this article to buy your favorite choice directly. Happy brewing and savoring every drop of your perfect espresso!


Is there a specific coffee type best for espresso machines?

Yes, there is. Espresso machines typically work best with coffee beans roasted to a medium to dark level. Dark roasts often offer the intensity and robustness of flavor ideal for espresso. However, it’s also about personal preference, so you might enjoy a lighter roast in your own espresso maker, especially if you prefer a less bitter flavor profile.

Is buying whole beans or pre-ground coffee for espresso better?

Whole beans are generally the better choice for espresso. This is because coffee begins to lose its flavor shortly after being ground. If you grind your beans immediately before brewing, you’ll get a fresher and more flavorful cup of espresso.

How do I know if coffee is suitable for espresso?

Typically, a coffee suitable for espresso will be described as a medium to dark roast, often with tasting notes that indicate a bold or robust flavor profile. However, you can technically make espresso with any coffee – it’s really about what flavor notes you enjoy most.

Is there a specific origin that’s best for espresso?

Not necessarily. Coffee from different origins will produce other flavor profiles, but none is inherently better for espresso than another. It ultimately comes down to your personal preference in terms of taste.

Can I use any coffee for an espresso machine?

Technically, you can use any coffee for an espresso machine, whether light, medium, dark roast or even flavored coffee. However, medium to dark roasts are typically favored for their robust flavor and compatibility with the intensity of espresso.

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Lorena is a writer and coffee lover who has been researching and writing about coffee for over five years. She has a passion for learning about all aspects of coffee, from how it is grown and harvested to the different brewing methods used around the world. Lorena’s goal is to share her knowledge with as many people as possible, and she does this through her writing on the Brew Coffee Daily. In addition to articles, Lorena also writes coffee reviews, offering readers an unbiased look at different brands and roasts. Whether you’re a coffee novice or a seasoned pro, Lorena’s writing will give you a new perspective on this beloved beverage.

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