What Coffee Grounds Does Starbucks Use?

Closeup Black Starbucks Coaster Made From Recycled Starbucks Coffee Grounds.

Every customer has a curiosity about the coffee grounds that Starbucks uses in its drinks even though it is not a secret; still, only a few know about it.


Starbucks uses only Arabica coffee grounds because of their rich taste, high quality, acidity, and low caffeine. However, these grounds are vulnerable to coffee rust and fungus, but they make Starbucks drinks unmatchable.

Two significant coffee grounds are used globally to fulfill the demand; one is Robusta, and the other is Arabica. But why does Starbucks prefer the Arabica grounds over the others? Let’s see the reasons behind it.

Why Starbucks Uses Arabica Coffee Grounds?

Arabica Coffee Berries With Agriculturist Handsrobusta And Arabica Coffee Berries With Agriculturist Hands, Gia Lai, Vietnam

Several factors can influence the flavor of coffee, while the species of coffee trees from which they source beans is one of the biggest.

Being a premium coffee brand, Starbucks wants its customers to feel the aroma till the last sip of their drink; that’s why they use Arabica grounds.

Starbucks Coffee Engagement Manager Aaron Robinson said, “Arabica can be elegant. It can be complex. It can have interesting body and acidity and be used, played with, and blended into new, interesting tastes.”


The Arabic coffee trees belong to the “Rubiaceae” family and can grow up to 30 feet (9 meters). Moreover, this species produces 60% of the world’s coffee.

1. Less Caffeine Concentration

Latte Art Starbucks. A Cup Of Coffee In Starbucks.

Starbucks uses Arabica coffee beans because they have less caffeine than others, resulting in a decrease in bitterness.


Arabica coffee grounds have only 1% caffeine, making them healthier for regular consumers. While in comparison Robusta which acquires 30% of the global coffee market, contains 2% caffeine.

2. Highly Refined Flavors

Business Caucasian Woman Taking A Break With A Tall Cup Of Starbucks Coffee In Starbucks Coffee Shop.

The flavor of Arabica coffee has notes of fruit, chocolate, and nuts. These beans are also known for their aroma, which is sweet and floral.

Starbucks prefers Arabica coffee beans due to several factors affecting the flavor, including the region and altitude where they are grown and how they are processed and roasted.

Starbucks has its roasteries at different locations around the world, and they blend the Arabica coffee beans in various ways to prepare its signature drinks, such as:

  • Blonde espresso roast: The lightest roast of Arabica coffee available at Starbucks that tastes a bit fruitier.
  • Decaf espresso roast: It refers to grounded Arabica coffee beans with balanced acidity and bitterness, giving caramelized flavor.
  • Signature espresso roast: This roast is the most powerful, dark, and rich note of Arabica coffee available at Starbucks that gives a smoky aroma.

Arabica trees grow at higher elevations, generally between 3,000 and 6,000 feet. At high altitudes, the development of coffee cherries becomes slow due to hot days and chilly nights, which enriches their flavor.

3. More Acidity and Body

Starbucks, Coffee Company And Coffeehouse Chain, Founded In Seattle, Wa. Usa, In 1971

Starbucks uses Arabica coffee in coffee blends for its complex and sweet flavor.

The weight or viscosity of this coffee ground on the tongue and its texture and body can all contribute to the mouthfeel.

Coffee ground that has been roasted for a longer time may have robust flavors, more acidity, and an oilier mouthfeel due to the Maillard reaction that occurs during the roasting process. That is why Starbucks tends to use a dark roast for many of its coffee blends.

4. Full of Nutrients

Modern Young Woman Relaxing And Listening To Music With Yellow Headphones And Drinking Hot Starbucks Coffee In Urban Park During Nice Sunset

Arabica coffee grounds are rich in vitamin B, manganese, potassium, and magnesium, which help the body’s metabolism, energy generation, bone health, and muscular function.


The nutritional content can vary on the preparation method, such as roasting, using a paper filter, or adding milk and sugar.


Starbucks uses 100% of Arabica coffee grounds in its drinks. However, the intensity of flavors can be shuffled with roasting techniques.

We hope that the next time you visit Starbucks to purchase coffee, you won’t have any doubts in mind.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where Does Starbucks Get Its Arabica Coffee Grounds?

Starbucks sources its coffee grounds from a variety of countries around the world, including Colombia, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, and Brazil. The company works with a network of farmers and suppliers to source high-quality Arabica beans.

What Is the Flavor Profile of Starbucks Coffee?

The flavor profile of Starbucks coffee can vary depending on the specific blend or roast. However, Starbucks is known for its signature dark roast, characterized by a bold and intense flavor.

Does Starbucks Use Fresh Ground Coffee?

Yes! Starbucks uses fresh Arabica coffee grounds for its brewed and espresso drinks roasted on-site at its stores.

How Long Does Starbucks Ground Coffee Stay Fresh?

The shelf life of ground coffee can vary depending on several factors, including how it is stored and roasted. Starbucks recommends consuming it within 2-3 weeks of opening the package to ensure the best flavor and aroma.

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