Using Coffee in Indian Cuisine: Things to Know

Coffee, a popular beverage enjoyed by millions of people worldwide, has a rich and flavorful texture that is sure to delight anyone who tries it.

While tea may be the preferred beverage of choice in India, coffee culture in the country is rapidly growing.

With a variety of flavors and textures to choose from, coffee offers a versatile drink that can be enjoyed hot or cold, creamy or foamy, sweet or strong, to cater to everyone’s preferences.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the different types of coffee available in India, their uses in Indian cuisine, and the various ways coffee can be cooked and enjoyed.

What is Coffee?

Using Coffee in Indian Cuisine

Coffee is a popular brewed drink made from roasted coffee beans, which are the seeds of the Coffea plant.

The two most commonly grown species of Coffea are Coffea arabica and Coffea robusta.

After roasting, the coffee beans are ground and then brewed with hot water to create a flavorful and aromatic beverage.

Coffee can be consumed in a variety of ways, such as black, with milk or cream, sweetened or unsweetened, and with or without additional flavorings.

It is enjoyed by millions of people around the world and has become an important part of many cultures.

Uses of Coffee in Indian Cuisines

Indians are known for their love for tea. However, they are not averse to coffee consumption. Coffee culture in India is relatively young compared to the Indians’ tea obsession.

However, it is a much-loved beverage in India though its daily consumption is noticed among high-heeled people.

As you travel around the globe and even across India, you will find a bouquet of coffee drinks.

In this segment, we will find out the most popular types. What makes a cup of brewing coffee taste great? The quality of coffee beans is the key.

Let us now take a closer look at how coffee is used in India and the different types of coffee available to enjoy.

Espresso: Most coffee drinks are espresso. It is made by forcing boiling water through coffee beans under high pressure. Espresso has three distinctly visible parts – a dark belly, a lighter mild layer, and a foamy crown.

Americano: It is a blend of hot water and espresso. Water makes a dilute variety of espresso. Americano, like espresso, contains no milk. The type was developed because Americans’ do not like the strong flavor of espresso.

Cappuccino: It is a fine blend of freshly brewed espresso, milk, and foamed milk in an equal amount. In some coffee, cappuccino is served with a tempting sprinkle of cocoa powder, cinnamon powder, and chocolate flakes.

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Creative designs with creamy foam serve as an attractive add-on and also lend the beverage a lovely texture.

Latte: Indians love latte probably the most. The rich texture with steamed milk, creamy foam looking like a lovely crown, and a small amount of espresso make it a much-loved variant for the Indians.

This type is perfect for Indians’ palettes. Fancy designs on foamy texture make the presentation more appealing.

It takes patience and experience to create great designs such as smilies, patterns, flowers, heart shapes, leaves, and many more. With every sip, you will feel it’s more than a coffee!

Macchiato: It is a hybrid between espresso and cappuccino. Macchiato is an Italian word. It means spotted, stained, or marked. A splash of steamed milk gives interesting layers to the brew.

This coffee variant is a shot of espresso. It is not a blended type but foamy, and milky with a layered texture.

Café Mocha: Most Indians love chocolate. What about having plenty of cream crowning your brew? A teaser for your taste buds, yeh?

It is another variant of espresso, enhanced with a nice blend of steamed milk and cocoa powder/chocolate. Milk neutralizes the taste perfectly. A cloud of whipped cream topping along with chocolate syrup makes it hard to resist.

Frappe: A perfect brew to make your summer breezy! Coffee, water, sugar, and ice are shaken to create a cloudy texture at the top. A long glass with the topping of a yummy ice cream scoop looks like something beyond your resistance.

In this category, you can choose from different options such as chocolate frappe, vanilla frappe, mango frappe, oreo frappe, hazelnut frappe, etc. However, the taste varies according to the Indian coffee brand.

Filter Coffee: This type is massively popular in South India. Hence, it is also known as Indian (Madras) Filter Coffee. This type is prepared by decocting water and coffee powder in a metal coffee filter and then adding it to a mix of hot milk and sugar.

Next, two glasses, usually steel, are used to pour the coffee back and forth. It creates a nice froth on the top. The process of making filter coffee makes it more succulent.

Interestingly, coffee is served both hot and cold. Though Gen X is fond of hot brew, teens and youths find their new love in cold, iced variants.

What Are the Different Types of Coffee?

There are different types of coffee beans just like their preparation and presentation in India.

Arabica Coffee: Arabica coffee is known for its stimulating aroma and subtle flavor. It is one of the best-selling coffee beans in India.

These beans are harvested at higher altitudes in larger areas and require heavy maintenance. India is the largest producer of Arabica coffee.

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This type fetches a high price. It is most likely that the type of coffee you have at your home is extracted from Arabica beans.

Robusta Coffee: Robusta is second to Arabica in terms of preference and consumption. This coffee variant produces an intense flavor due to its high caffeine content.

Hot and humid climates are ideal for the Robusta coffee harvest. However, they can easily adapt to environmental changes. This type is less expensive than Arabica beans and tastes the best as iced coffee.

Sips of coffee create a vibe of luxury for many Indians. The richness in texture and flavor makes coffee a great drink to relish with or without snacks. Moreover, fancy art on a foamy top has made a cup of coffee more appealing to beverage connoisseurs.

How Do You Make Good Coffee at Home?

Making good coffee at home is not rocket science, but it does require a few essential steps to achieve the perfect cup. Here are some tips on how to make a delicious cup of coffee at home:

Choose high-quality coffee beans: The quality of your coffee beans is crucial to the flavor of your coffee. Look for freshly roasted beans that are sourced from a reputable roaster.

Grind your beans fresh: Invest in a good quality coffee grinder and grind your beans just before brewing. This will ensure that the coffee is fresh and retains its flavor and aroma.

Use the right amount of coffee: A general rule of thumb is to use one to two tablespoons of coffee per six ounces of water. However, the strength of the coffee can be adjusted according to your personal preference.

Use filtered water: The quality of water used in coffee-making can significantly affect the taste of your coffee. Use clean and filtered water for the best results.

Brew at the right temperature: The ideal temperature for brewing coffee is between 195°F to 205°F. Use a thermometer to ensure that the water is at the correct temperature.

Brew for the right amount of time: The brewing time can vary depending on the brewing method and the grind size. Typically, brewing time ranges between 2 to 5 minutes.

By following these simple steps, you can make a delicious cup of coffee at home that rivals the taste and quality of your favorite coffee shop.

What is the Secret to Good Coffee?

The secret to good coffee lies in several factors such as using high-quality beans, using the right water-to-coffee ratio, brewing at the correct temperature, and choosing the appropriate brewing method for the beans you have.

Additionally, ensuring that the coffee is freshly roasted and freshly ground before brewing can also greatly impact the taste and quality of the coffee.

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Finally, the personal preferences and taste of the individual also play a role in determining what constitutes good coffee.

What Makes Coffee Taste Better?

Several factors contribute to making coffee taste better, including the quality and freshness of the beans, the brewing method, the water temperature, and the ratio of coffee to water.

Starting with high-quality, freshly roasted beans is essential to producing a delicious cup of coffee.

Beans that have been sitting on a shelf for too long can go stale and lose their flavor. Additionally, using the right amount of coffee per cup and grinding the beans just before brewing can enhance the taste.

The brewing method also plays a significant role in the taste of coffee. The most common brewing methods are drip coffee, French press, pour-over, and espresso.

Each method has its unique characteristics that can affect the flavor of the coffee. For instance, a French press produces a full-bodied and rich coffee, while pour-over brewing brings out the subtle flavors and aroma.

Lastly, the temperature of the water used for brewing also matters. Water that is too hot can cause the coffee to taste bitter, while water that is too cold can produce a weak and flavorless cup of coffee.

The ideal temperature for brewing coffee is between 195°F and 205°F.

Why Do You Add Salt to Coffee?

Adding salt to coffee is a common practice in some cultures and is believed to enhance the flavor of coffee.

The small amount of salt can counteract the bitterness of the coffee, making it taste smoother and less harsh.

Additionally, salt can also enhance the natural sweetness of the coffee and bring out its subtle flavors.

However, it’s important to note that adding too much salt can make the coffee taste unpleasant, so it’s recommended to start with a small amount and adjust to taste.


Coffee culture in India is on the rise, with a variety of flavors and textures available to cater to everyone’s preferences.

While tea is still the preferred beverage of choice, coffee is becoming more popular, especially among high-heeled people.

Indians can enjoy a range of coffee drinks, including espresso, Americano, cappuccino, latte, macchiato, café mocha, frappe, and filter coffee.

Arabica and Robusta are the two most commonly grown species of coffee in India, with Arabica being the best-selling type.

Coffee can be consumed hot or cold and is becoming an important part of Indian culture.

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