Some people love it, some people hate it. Some people just tolerate it because it is easy and cheap. Either way, my guess is you have an opinion.
Regardless of the taste, there’s no arguing that instant coffee is the quickest and easiest way to make a hot cuppa.
However, with an increasing number of brands available in grocery stores and supermarkets, it can be tricky to know where to start when selecting an instant coffee to try.
If you’re ready for a change or have ever wondered what sets one brand apart from the other, then read on!
What makes a great instant coffee?
There are two common ways to process coffee beans for making instant coffee.
With freeze-drying, the base ingredient is frozen, then broken into smaller pieces. While, with spray drying, the base ingredient is sprayed into a hot air chamber.
Freeze drying is viewed as the more premium processing method so you should look out for instant coffee that has been processed in this way.
Types of beans
Coffees from beans of the Arabica variety tend to be sweeter and more nuanced (great for single origin roasts), while those from “robusta” beans are stronger and more bitter.
To start, we recommend you try an Arabica instant coffee.
Once you’ve sampled a few varieties, you’ll know whether to stick with that or go for a different one.
Supply chain visibility
The coffee industry is notorious for exploitation and underpaying of workers. If possible, look for an instant coffee where you can obtain confidence that everyone in the supply chain, including the farmers, have been treated fairly, and paid a fair wage.
With that said, below we’ve rounded up some of the most popular instant coffees in Australia for you to use as a starting point in your search.
Moccona Classic Dark Roast Freeze Dried
Moccona Classic Dark Roast Blend is created by combining the finest beans available: Arabica and Robusta. The Arabica bean has a mild, sweet, and fruity flavour that complements the dark-roast Robusta bean.
This is one of the stronger Moccona releases with an intense aroma and a strength rating of 8/10.
Nature’s Cuppa Instant Coffee
Nature’s Cuppa strives to create natural, products that are good for the environment.
Their instant freeze dried coffee granules are made from 100% Arabica beans, resulting in a smooth, rich roast flavour and aroma.
Because of Nature’s Cuppa’s Rainforest Alliance partnership, this product contributes to environmental sustainability.
What’s more, because this coffee is organic, you know no nasties have been used in the farming of the coffee beans or in the processing.
Coles Organic Fairtrade Gold Freeze Dried
Made from 100% Arabica Beans, Coles Organic Gold is a smooth and silky instant coffee blend.
This instant coffee is certified organic by the Australian Certified Organic (ACO), meaning it’s been made without synthetic chemicals, artificial fertilisers or genetically modified organisms. It’s also been certified Fairtrade, which means the farmers who grow the coffee beans are paid a fair price for their work.
Coles Organic Fairtrade Gold Freeze Dried instant coffee comes in a 100g jar, which will provide approximately 50 cups of coffee.
Nescafé Blend 43 Espresso Instant Coffee
Nescafe Blend 43 combines the flavour of Robusta and Arabica coffee beans roasted to deliver a bold, intense taste with a dark, full-bodied finish.
It is made from 100% Sustainable Coffee Beans that are roasted and blended in Australia.
Nescafé Blend 43 uses only specially selected coffee beans, which are roasted darker for a richer, more intense-tasting coffee.
Supreme Colombia Instant Coffee
If you’re happy to splash out a bit on your next purchase of instant coffee, check out this premium instant coffee from specialty coffee roaster Coffee Supreme.
Coffee Supreme Instant is 100% coffee with no additives. Beans are sourced from the Yacuanquer region in Colombia, which produces some of the highest grade beans in the world.
The beans are roasted by Coffee Supreme, brewed, then freeze dried.
Importantly, this instant coffee also offers full traceability of the coffee beans.
International Roast Instant Coffee
Produced by Nestlé, International Roast is a full-bodied blend. With its rich, smooth flavour, International Roast Coffee has been popular in Australia for decades.
It is available in a 500g or 1kg tin, or as individual sachets, which are perfect for taking to work or on holiday or camping trips.
Nescafé Short Black
Nescafé Gold Short Black has a rich, satisfying taste and aroma. It’s made from quality coffee beans and extremely popular with people who enjoy espresso/short black coffee.
This instant coffee is made from 100% Arabica coffee beans, carefully selected and expertly roasted to bring out their depth of flavour. All you need to do is add the contents of the sachet into a cup or mug, stir in hot water and enjoy a full-bodied cup of coffee.
What Is Instant Coffee?
Instant coffee, also called soluble coffee or powdered coffee, is a product derived from roasted coffee beans. Coffee drinkers add hot water or milk and stir to enjoy a hot beverage within minutes.
Instant coffee is made by forcing hot water through roasted coffee beans. The resulting liquid is then evaporated or frozen, to increase its concentration.
Drying is conducted using one of two methods: freeze-drying or spray drying. The dried coffee is then packaged as coffee crystals.
RELATED: How To Make Instant Coffee
Instant coffee FAQ
Is instant coffee the same as real coffee?
Instant coffee is made by brewing ground coffee beans and water, just like regular coffee—only the process is much different and the concentration of its extract is stronger.
What’s wrong with instant coffee?
Research has found that instant coffee contained roughly twice as much acrylamide as regular coffee, a chemical formed when coffee beans are roasted and may increase your risk of cancer.
Why is instant coffee cheaper?
To save money, most instant coffee brands use low-quality robusta beans. But you can still find brands that use 100% arabica beans. Even though the latter is more expensive per cup, it still costs less than traditional ground coffee.
Is Moccona Australian?
Moccona is a brand of coffee owned by Jacobs Douwe Egberts, a company based in the Netherlands.