The 4 Different Ways To Roast Your Own Coffee Beans

The coffee typically found at a local store may lack the freshness and flavor complexities that exist in home-roasted beans. While home-roasted beans can also save you some cash and give you more control over the flavor of your coffee. This article will walk you through the different ways to roast coffee beans at home.

Sure, you can master making a couple of French pastries or the perfect sourdough bread by watching an online tutorial, but a morning meal is incomplete without a warm cup of perfectly brewed coffee. 

You will learn in this article about the basics of setting up a roastery, flavor profiles, and more at home.

Different Ways To Roast Your Own Coffee Beans

Before You Get Started

Before you start the roasting process, it is imperative to get accustomed to the type of flavor that every bean has to offer. To do this, you can buy different batches and select the one which suits you the most. 

As a general rule of thumb, if you want a certain amount of roasted beans, you should purchase two times more raw beans. This is due to the increment in size that they go through while roasting. Along with the main equipment, set aside a few metal bowls and gloves to handle the hot produce. 

Ensure that you store your beans in a sealed container in a moisture-tight area in your home. Lastly, you should be aware that roasting coffee beans will also produce a strong pungent odor. Thus, try to carry out the process in a well-ventilated area with some windows if possible. 

The 4 Ways To Roast Your Own Coffee Beans

If you are a beginner and just want to get the job done without having to purchase any special equipment, then roasting your beans in a pan or by using the help of a popcorn popper is the best option. These methods are also quite inexpensive and do not require you to have any prior experience with roasting. The only downside is the reduced degree of consistency. 

However, if you are wanting to roast beans in a large quantity, then you can alternate towards using an oven.

There are tons of home coffee roasters available in the market that provide highly consistent results. Needless to say, they come at an expensive price too.

MethodProsCons
PanNo special equipment needed Beginner-friendly Charred beans
Undeveloped beans
Popcorn PopperEasy to learn
Affordable 
You won’t have to stir the beans on a constant basis 
Poor temperature regulation
Beans are chaffed easily
Underdeveloped taste
OvenCan roast a high volume of beansUneven roast
Plenty of equipment required
Coffee Roasting Machine Best in terms of taste and consistency 
Temperature can be controlled 
No fire hazard
Expensive 
Bulky machinery 

1. Using A Pan

Pan

Materials Required:

Roasting coffee in a shallow and wide pan is one of the oldest and most conventional ways to get a delectable roast. All you need to do is stir the beans until you get your desired shade of brown. 

  1. Start by heating your pan over a shallow flame followed by gently pouring the beans. Ensure that they are evenly spread in a single layer. 
  2. Stir the beans using a wooden spatula and wait until you hear the sound of the first crack. The cracking sound comes from the water evaporation that occurs within the surface. It is then followed by a second cracking sound. If you want a dark and rich texture in your coffee, then you should let the beans sit on the flame for 3-4 minutes.

Note: You cannot regulate the temperature of the beans at every stage, but there is a hack that can help you avoid charred beans. First and foremost, you must keep stirring the beans. Leave them sitting in one place for too long and you’ll end up with undeveloped brews. 

  1. Using your oven mitt, gently lift the pan after every minute when starting the process. Keep it slightly in the air for about 15-20 seconds and don’t forget to keep the beans moving. This can prevent them from burning.

2. Using A Popcorn Popper

Popcorn popper

Materials Required

  • Unroasted coffee beans
  • popcorn popper
  • a wooden spoon
  • oven mitts
  • metal sieves

If you aren’t willing to shell out a couple of hundred bucks on a high-end roaster, but you still want adequate results, then this is the option for you. These crank-style popcorn poppers are extremely easy to find and will not cost you more than 20-30 bucks. Avoid poppers that come with a plastic lid as there is a high chance that they may melt due to the heat. 

  1. Start by placing the popper on a stovetop and heating it up to 232 degrees Celsius. You can use a candy thermometer to monitor the temperature at this stage.
  2. Pour some coffee beans inside (not more than half a cup) and close the lid. 
  3. Notice the movement inside the popper. The beans may start to pop after two to three minutes. Until then, you should keep stirring them to impart an even level of heat. When you hear a cracking sound followed by the aroma of the coffee, then it’s time to take them off the stovetop. 
  4. Place the beans in a metal colander and let them cool. 

Note: Avoid carrying out this process under your kitchen cabinet, as the beans may pop out and damage the interior design of your home. 

3. Using An Oven

Oven

Materials Required

  • Unroasted coffee
  • oven
  • a shallow pan
  • baking sheet
  • spoon
  • a sieve for cooling 

Using an oven is the most simple and worry-free method out of the bunch mentioned here.

  1. Preheat your oven to 500 degrees Celsius and prepare your pan in the meantime. Take your baking sheet and drill small holes separated at a half-inch distance. 
  2. Lay the sheet on your pan and layer the green beans on top. Make sure they don’t overlap and are evenly spread throughout the sheet. 
  3. Now place the pan onto the middle rack of your oven and roast the beans for five minutes. You should hear the first crack around this time followed by a second one in two more minutes. A city roast is usually achieved in eight minutes or so while a medium roast may take up to 12-15 minutes. 
  4. Once you hear the popping sound, take them out and observe the color. To get a darker texture, stir them and place them back in for a couple more minutes. 
  5. Then remove the beans and place them into a metal colander to remove the chaff. 

4. Using A Home Coffee Roaster

coffee roaster

Materials Required

  • Green coffee beans
  • coffee roaster
  • wooden spoon
  • a sieve

This method is hands-down the best method to roast coffee. Be it the even roast or the consistent taste, this technique is the one a coffee lover would use if they wanted a rich taste each time with minimal effort. 

  1. Measure the beans and put them in a roaster. The minimum amount you can add should be labeled on the packaging of the roaster. Avoid filling it up to the brim as that could create a fire hazard. 
  2. Set the roasting temperature and the heating time and turn on your air roaster. Monitor the time taken by your beans to reach the first crack so as to get a better idea of the roasting profile for future roasts. 
  3. When the beans get to the desired color, clean out the chaff collector and allow the beans to cool. 

Additional Terms 

  • Roasting Profile: This indicates the degree of temperature applied to the coffee beans in a given amount of time. The stronger the roasting profile, the darker your coffee will be. Timing your roast allows you to get a consistent taste if you decide to roast again sometime later.
  • The Cooling Process: To lower the temperature of your beans once you are done, simply pass them amongst each of the sieves. Many people also place their coffee beans in front of a fan. It is worth noting that a considerable amount of carbon dioxide seeps in the beans while they are being heated. This translates to poor extraction as the carbon dioxide doesn’t allow water to penetrate. Thus, it is advisable to let your coffee beans sit for at least one to two weeks for the best taste. 

Conclusion 

Now that you are acquainted with all the roasting techniques, there’s nothing stopping you from brewing the perfect cup of coffee. Of all the methods discussed, the one involving a coffee bean roasting machine is the most effective when it comes to a consistent taste. 

However, if you are on a budget or just getting started, then trying with a popcorn popper might be a good idea to get some practice. Roasting will give you full control and will allow you to further understand the various tastes of coffee. 

Patience is the most crucial aspect of this process. The longer you let your beans sit after they are ready, the better. Once you experience the wholesome process of roasting at home, you will probably not want to switch to pre-roasted coffee again!