How can a tea connoisseur even tolerate a post on instant coffee? That’s a good question.
There are times when even the most astute coffee snob will find where instant coffee is the only thing available. It may be that he is in the back bush of Africa (like myself) or the only coffee drinker at a family event (I also suffer from this).
Too often, thoughtful hosts feel that instant coffee is an excellent way to show sympathy for their guest’s coffee drinking habits.
So for those potential hosts that are reading this please, I implore you, stop reading this and go buy a french press. Your coffee drinking friends will cease to slander you behind your back for your nasty instant coffee and will instantly forgive all past discretions.
French coffee presses are amazing…
Ok, so for some reason you are still looking for the best instant coffee. Well, let’s see what we can find!
Instant coffee is a soluble coffee powder that dissolves in your hot cup of water. One could say that the hot cup of water was better tasting before the instant coffee was added.
Instant coffee is typically made by freeze-drying, or, more commonly, spray-drying, a compound of coffee. Then this powdered coffee essence can be rejuvenated with a little bit of hot water, whenever the urge for coffee strikes.
How Much Caffeine is in Instant Coffee?
Instant coffee is normally made by dashing an unmeasured amount of coffee powder into your cup. Because of that, the amount of caffeine in a cup of instant coffee is also going to vary. Typically, though, one could expect to get anywhere from 85 to about 100 mg of caffeine in a cup of instant coffee.
It was for this jolt of caffeine (as well as ease of preparation, that lead one coworker of mine to keep a jar of Folgers instant coffee in his desk. I can say that Folgers is definitively the best instant coffee I have tried.
Instant Coffee Reviews – Which One Is Best?
Nescafe Instant Coffee
I am NOT a fan of Nescafe’s instant coffee. Almost every time I have tried it, I have found it to be unthinkably bitter.
However, they have recently remade their formula into a “Taster’s Choice” blend, which seem to get slightly better reviews on Amazon. (4 out of 5 stars)
Folgers Instant Coffee
The “best part about waking up”, eh? I think there’d be nothing quite like the looming threat of a cup of instant coffee to scare me back under the covers. However, it seems that the Folgers instant coffee is one of the best ones on the market, and is also very reasonably priced. It does not have as sharp of a bite to it as too many instant coffees are bound to have.
Folgers instant coffee only garnered 2.5 out of 5 stars on Amazon, but the critical reviews are much, much less negative.
Starbuck’s Via Ready Coffee
I am a major sucker for Starbucks, but their instant coffee? Other coffee-drinkers are believers. Amazon customer’s (121 of them) have rated it 4 out of 5 stars. (It has more 5 star reviews by ratio, than any other instant coffees at amazon.)
And I can, actually believe them. You might accuse Starbucks of being too commercialized, but they do know coffee and what needs to be done to make a good coffee drink.
And, their prices are every bit as good as Nescafe’s “Taster’s Choice” stuff.
There are also organic instant coffees on the market. To me, the idea of “organic instant coffee” is too much oxymoron to even comment. I may change my opinion later, but I really think that if you are going to be a stickler about your coffee, you should be a stickler about its taste.
Instant Coffee and Cancer
Is instant coffee bad for your health?
The short answer? No worse than any other coffee.
In 2006 a study was done that revealed that acrylamide was found in instant coffee. This is the same chemical compound found in chips and fries that has been conclusively linked to increased cancer.
However, further review showed that acrylamide appears during the roasting process and is also present in regular coffee.
And, several studies have shown that regular consumption of coffee can statistically reduce the likelihood of breast cancer and prostate cancer.
So, it seems that since coffee is reducing cancer, the idea of instant coffee causing cancer because of some acrylamides, is not very likely.
However, give it enough time and some government funded scientific research project may prove me wrong.