We’re a little hyped up right now, and that is because we’ve had the privilege of sampling many dozens of different espresso powders. While most espresso powders are pretty good, some go above and beyond expectations. Those are the powders that we are interested in, and those are the powders featured on our list.
The options here have been vetted on the grounds of their user experience, overall taste, aroma, and value. Read on for some espresso powder reviews that include options for buyers of every budget!
Comparison of Our Favorites (updated in 2022):
The 8 Best Espresso Powders
1. illy Classico Ground Espresso Powder – Best Overall
When you think about espresso, chances are good that Italy comes to mind. So why not try illy’s Classico Ground Espresso, an incredibly robust, well-balanced medium roast?
This finely-ground espresso comes in airtight cans, so it won’t go stale even if you buy in bulk. Expect notes of caramel and chocolate, along with an aroma that will blow you away. It’s also made with 100% Arabica beans.
This espresso powder is pretty pricey, and it’s not quite fine enough for baking. Still, it’s one of the most flavorful options on this list and easily our top pick for best espresso powder of 2021.
- Robust, well-balanced medium roast
- 100% Arabica beans
- Caramel and chocolate flavors
- Airtight cans
- May be too coarse for baking
- Somewhat pricey
2. King Arthur Flour Espresso Powder
Espresso isn’t just for drinking. It is also an important ingredient in lots of awesome dinners and desserts. If you are looking for the best espresso powder for baking, this is going to be the one for you.
King Arthur Flour Espresso actually is not made for drinking, but it will help you whip up some great cookies and cakes. You can let your imagination fill in the rest.
In addition to being a good product, it also comes from a good company. King Arthur is employee-owned and participates in profit sharing to ensure that everyone involved is fairly compensated for their work.
If you’re looking for a great instant espresso for baking, this is it. However, bear in mind that because this powder cannot be used to make drinks, it’s not a particularly versatile option.
It’s also a little pricey. Though the actual cost of the product is not outrageous, the three-ounce quantity does cause value concerns.
- Great for baking
- Ethical business operations
- Value concerns
- Cannot be used for drinking
3. Café La Rica Gourmet Espresso
In our runner-up slot we have the Café La Rica Gourmet. The ten-ounce package serves as a more affordable option for buyers who were turned off by the price tag of our last pick.
It’s a Cuban blend that is rich in a flavor in keeping with the expectations of the region. Café La Rica is a dark roast that will be perfect for coffee drinkers who like something with lots and lots of flavor.
Best of all, it’s also an ethical company. It utilizes an environmentally sustainable approach to harvesting its beans, and it also pays fair wages for its labor.
Bear in mind that this espresso won’t be as good for baking as our top choice. The grounds are far coarser than most espressos, which means that it doesn’t work so well for cooking.
- Affordable and ethical
- Tasty Cuban coffee
- Strong, dark flavor
- Not as suitable for baking
- Not instant espresso powder
4. Lavazza Caffe Espresso Ground Coffee – Best Value
In our best for the money slot is the Lavazza Caffe Espresso. The quality, quantity, and cost combine to make tasty and competitively priced espresso that budget buyers will definitely want to try.
The flavor is rich and almost cocoa-like, taking after the Italian tradition both in flavor and in the fragrant aroma.
But despite having a sophisticated taste, it’s also a very accessible blend. The beans come pre-ground and can be used both in espresso makers and also in your average coffee pot. Unfortunately, however, if you don’t have a higher-end coffee maker, these grounds may end up tasting more or less like your average drip-brew pot of coffee.
It also won’t be great for baking due to the consistency of the grounds. Still, if you are looking for an affordable way to spice up your coffee routine, this is a strong option to consider.
- Can be used with normal coffee makers
- Deliciously fragrant
- Not very good for baking
- Depending on your coffee maker, you may not fully enjoy the flavor of the grounds
5. Anthony’s Organic Baking Espresso Powder
Anthony’s Organic Espresso Baking Powder will be optimal for buyers looking for something as natural as possible. Not only is this powder organic, it’s also gluten-free and features no chemical additives.
It’s a tasty blend for baking and will be able to bring out the chocolate notes in anything from icings to sauces. Unfortunately, unlike some of the other powders on our list, it can’t be used for drinking. It’s also a little pricey, considering it only comes in a five-ounce container. The price factor is likely mostly because it is an organic product, but it probably will be a problem for budget buyers.
- Can only be used for baking
6. Medaglia D’Oro Espresso Instant Coffee
The Medaglia D’Oro Espresso’s strong suit is the ease with which it can be made. It’s a true instant coffee that can be mixed with water in seconds for an easy mid-day pick-me-up.
However, what it has in ease of use, it lacks in sophistication. While espresso is characterized by a rich, robust flavor profile, the Medaglia D’Oro is watery and somewhat unsatisfying. It tastes more like a very forgettable cup of gas station coffee than it does a true cup of espresso.
It mostly earns its spot on our list for its price and its ease of use. If you’re looking for a quick emergency stash of coffee to keep in the office, this might do the trick. If you’re looking for something tasty, however, you will probably be better served by the other options on our list.
- Very easy to use
- Watery flavor doesn’t resemble actual espresso
7. Café Bustelo Espresso Style Instant Decaf Coffee
Here, we have something for the decaf lovers. The Café Bustelo Espresso Style instant blend is a fast and easy way to enjoy your coffee without the inevitable ensuing buzz.
One of the really nice things about this powder is that it is available to buy in bulk. If you really like it, you can buy twelve-packs that maximize the value offering. Unfortunately, though, there is a fairly decent chance that you won’t want to make quite that large a commitment.
This espresso is not quite as flavorful as the other options on our list. It also cannot be used for baking, which will limit its potential application significantly.
- Can be bought in bulk
- Cannot be used for baking
- Not a very robust flavor profile
Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Espresso Powders
Now that you’ve read over the list of our favorite espresso powders, it’s time for us to explain the criteria we used to make our list. When choosing espresso powder taste, aroma, user experience, and value should be kept in mind. Read on below to learn how we implemented each of these criteria while reviewing the best espresso powders on the market.
While every espresso powder isn’t used for the same thing, each one must have the taste you’re expecting. As we reviewed different powders, we kept taste at the forefront. Many of the powders on our list are used for drinks. Those that are designed for this use should have the espresso taste you expect. Unfortunately, many did not. Some powders are quite bland. If you want one with a kick, check over our review above and choose the one you feel most comfortable using in your cup.
Many times, espresso powder is used for baking and other things around the kitchen. It can enhance the flavor of certain core ingredients, like chocolate in a chocolate cake. Although it isn’t in your coffee cup, that doesn’t change the fact it should be tasty. A good espresso powder for cooking should be rich and robust. If not, it isn’t going to give your food the kick and flavor you’re hoping for. You’ll see our thoughts on the flavor of each powder above. This should help you choose the one that should share space with the other yummy things in your kitchen.
Any product with coffee inside should have a great flavor. Just ask all the coffee lovers around the world. Luckily, most of the espresso powders on this list don’t have an issue bringing the aroma you want to the forefront. While a few espresso powders we reviewed were slightly lacking when it came to the aroma, you could still pick up the familiar hints you’d expect.
Having a product at your side that makes life easier is everyone’s goal. Many of the espresso powders on our list do exactly that. For those seeking espresso powder for a morning cup, we have instant espressos on this list. While they make life easier, you can always rely on them for the best cup of espresso each morning.
Where user experience truly comes into play is with espresso powder used for baking. Taking the packaging and ease of use in mind, it’s clear to see most of the powders on our list are ideal for the cook in your family. A simple shake or scoop is all that’s needed to give your baked goods or other meals the flavor boost you’re hoping for.
Unfortunately, when it comes to espresso powder pricing, you’ll deal with a wide range of differences. Some of the powders on our list are definitely on the higher end when it comes to price. When you take into consideration the small amount you receive, this seriously damages the value of the product. For those who use quite a bit of espresso powder, this can be very costly. If you aren’t concerned with the price, then our top picks should be your go-to choices. Those toward the end of the list may be more affordable but you’ll notice a bigger difference in taste and aroma when choosing these espresso powders.
So, which of our espresso powder reviews stuck out to you? When you’re dealing with something as delicious as espresso, it can be hard to narrow the choice down to just one option.
If you haven’t quite finalized your decision, we may be able to lend a hand. Buyers looking for nothing short of the best should look to our top choice, illy’s Classico Ground Espresso. It’s a delicious Italian espresso that’s finely ground and conveniently sold in airtight cans.
We also have something for budget buyers. If you want to save some money on a great espresso, consider our best for the money pick, Lavazza Caffe Espresso.
SEE ALSO: What is Coffee Flour? Learn how to make this delicious ingredient!
Table of Contents
- Comparison of Our Favorites (updated in 2022):
- The 8 Best Espresso Powders
- 1. illy Classico Ground Espresso Powder – Best Overall
- 2. King Arthur Flour Espresso Powder
- 3. Café La Rica Gourmet Espresso
- 4. Lavazza Caffe Espresso Ground Coffee – Best Value
- 5. Anthony’s Organic Baking Espresso Powder
- 6. Medaglia D’Oro Espresso Instant Coffee
- 7. Café Bustelo Espresso Style Instant Decaf Coffee
- Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Espresso Powders