What is Green Coffee?

Ken Black

Green coffee is coffee that remains unroasted. Usually, the beans are picked, processed wet, dried and then milled. However, they are not roasted because that process is usually left to the end consumer. The term "green" can also refer to coffee cultivated and harvested in an environmentally friendly way, but this is a rare use of the term.

Green coffee beans are dried and sold unroasted.
Green coffee beans are dried and sold unroasted.

There are several advantages to green coffee over the traditional way coffee is delivered to the consumer. It is one of the freshest ways that coffee can be delivered to the consumer. The coffee beans stay fresher much longer in an unroasted state and, therefore, those coffee connoisseurs who are interested in having the freshest coffee possible will likely be more inclined to choose green beans.

Roasted coffee beans.
Roasted coffee beans.

Once a consumer receives green coffee, he or she must then choose a way to roast the beans in order to make it suitable for creating the beverage. Coffee can be roasted in a number of ways, many of which are very simple. Specialty equipment is available for roasting; however, there are other methods that can be used which do not require special equipment.

Green coffee beans are picked, processed wet, dried and milled but are not roasted.
Green coffee beans are picked, processed wet, dried and milled but are not roasted.

Roasting can also take place in a number of ways using equipment not necessarily intended for roasting coffee, but that can be adapted for that purpose. For example, it can be roasted in a stove top popcorn popper, an air popcorn popper or even an oven. In many cases, it may take no longer than 10 minutes to suitably roast the coffee beans, and many say the aroma it provides simply is one of the best smells coffee lovers could ever experience.

Green coffee can be purchased from a variety of locations. Specialty coffee shops may offer the best selection and the employees may be very knowledgeable on roasting coffee for personal use. Thus, those who are roasting beans for the first time may feel more comfortable buying their beans from such a location. The Internet is also full of online retailers offering this type of coffee for sale. Some local supermarkets may also offer a small selection.

It should be noted that because green coffee maintains its freshness much easier in its native form, the best advice may be to not roast any more than may be consumed in a day or two. Therefore, the consumer is always guaranteed of having the freshest coffee possible. Green beans will stay fresh in their unroasted form for months. However, once roasted, the beans have a much shorter time before they become noticeably less fresh. For the experienced coffee drinker, this will lead to a substandard coffee-drinking experience.

A gourmet coffee shop may stock several different varieties of green coffee.
A gourmet coffee shop may stock several different varieties of green coffee.

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Discussion Comments


I just roasted fresh green coffee this morning. I did it on the stove so I had to be careful to roast it just right without burning. But the scent and flavor of my cup of coffee this morning was amazing, it was out of this world. Fresh coffee is the best!


@healthnwell-- I don't see how it will make a difference, since you have to roast green coffee before brewing it. It's the same as regular coffee at the end!

I do have a friend raving about green coffee extract as well. But I personally don't trust these weight loss supplements. If green coffee helps with weight loss, so does regular coffee. Plus, roasted coffee has more antioxidants than green coffee, so it's probably healthier in the long term.

These are just money-making schemes by green coffee suppliers in my view.


I'm not sure about buying wholesale green coffee and roasting it myself, that sounds like a lot of work.

But I would consider buying green coffee and using it in other ways. I've read very good things about green coffee, that it's a super-food and helps with weight loss.

I think some people have been consuming it as supplements or grinding green coffee into a powder and putting it into shakes.


@healthnwell-- Oh, I think that organic green coffee is so much better than regular coffee. When my husband and I made the switch we noticed a huge difference. Since there are no pesticides used in growing the organic beans, green or regular, so there are no toxins that build up in your body, and we could totally feel a difference in our overall health. I've also read that organic green coffee is good for your cholesterol levels and metabolism too, which is great for me -- I'm always trying to lose that last ten pounds!


Wonderful information! My girlfriend has raved about green coffee and I had no idea what she was talking about until I looked it up.

Does anyone know if green coffee has any of the great health benefits that green tea has?

I was wondering because I love coffee and if the green coffee is more healthful than regular roasted than I will definitely switch.

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