How to Make Coffee Less Bitter without Sugar?

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Some people love bitter coffee for its bold flavor; others find it unpalatable. Sugar is often added to coffee to reduce pungency for an instant solution to bitterness. However, too much sugar can have serious health issues. 

There are a few ways to make coffee less bitter without adding sugar. A few simple adjustments make it possible to enjoy coffee without this unhealthy additive. Read the entire post to learn more.

Why Does Coffee Become Bitter?

Your coffee can be bitter for many reasons. Here is a list of some common things that make coffee bitter.

  1. Choosing poor quality coffee beans.
  2. Too long brewing time.
  3. Brewing coffee with too much water.
  4. Adding too many coffee grounds.
  5. Brewing coffee at a high temperature.
  6. Using old and stale coffee beans.
  7. Over-roasting or under-roasting coffee beans.
  8. Poor storage of coffee beans.
  9. Incorrectly cleaning your coffee machine.

Why Should You Not Add Sugar to Reduce the Bitterness of Coffee?

Why Should You Not Add Sugar to Reduce the Bitterness of Coffee

Everyone likes sugar as a common additive in coffee. But, sugar was never a healthy sweetener for the human beings. 

According to The American Hospital Association (AHA), consuming 30 grams of sugar a day is safe. But, many people take more sugar than this limit with coffee. 

As a result, they suffer from cardiovascular disease, higher blood pressure, inflammation, weight gain, and diabetes. While sugar makes coffee more enjoyable, it is important to be aware of the potential health risks of this additive. 

Coffee is one of the healthiest drinks we have ever discovered. So, we should not make it unhealthy by adding sugar. You need to limit sugar intake immediately for a healthy lifestyle.

How to Make Coffee Less Bitter with No Additives?

It is not always necessary to find an alternative additive to sugar to make your coffee less bitter. Sometimes, a few changes in beans in the brewing method will fix the issue. Check out the following tips.

Pick out Arabica Light Roast Beans

Coffee made from Arabica beans grown in South America tends to be less bitter than other variants like Robusta. Besides, you should choose a light roast instead of a dark when you want to avoid bitter coffee. Dark roast coffee is usually bitterer because the roasting process brings out more of the natural oils in the beans that have a bitter taste.

Brew a Coarser Grind Instead of a Finer

A finer grind will result in over-extraction and a bitter cup of coffee. On the other hand, a coarse grind will make the coffee less bitter. Coarse grinds are larger than medium and fine grinds and break down slower. It reduces the chance of over-extraction and bitter coffee. So, go for a coarse grind to brew less bitter coffee.

Try Cold Brewing for a Smoother Taste

Traditional brewing methods often cause bitter coffee. However, cold brewing is widely known for making less bitter and more flavorful coffee. It is much smoother than iced coffee and coffee brewed using hot water. 

Cold brewing does not release the same amount of acidic compounds as hot brewing, resulting in a less bitter drink. It is also less likely to cause heartburn or other digestive issues, as the lower acidity level is easier on the stomach. 

Which Alternative Additives Can Be Added to Coffee to Reduce Bitterness?

Many healthy ingredients can be added to coffee to reduce the bitter taste. Here is the list of healthy additives you can use instead of sugar. 

Honey: The Best Alternative Sweetener for Coffee

Honey in coffee

Honey is the best alternative to sugar and artificial sweeteners in coffee. It is a great source of vitamins and minerals that can help boost your health. Honey also contains antioxidants to protect your body from free radicals. Adding honey to coffee will reduce bitterness as well as enhance its taste. However, make sure to consume it in moderation to avoid increasing your blood sugar level.


Salt may seem like an unlikely ingredient in coffee. But, it can actually help to reduce bitterness and enhance sweetness. When added in small amounts, salt helps to complete the flavor of coffee and bring out its natural sweetness. Many baristas follow this secret to create the perfect cup of coffee. 


Milk is a good source of protein, calcium, and healthy fats. These fats help reduce coffee’s bitter taste and make it more pleasant for coffee enthusiasts. In addition, milk helps to improve the texture of coffee and gives it a smoother mouth feel. 


Cinnamon has many benefits and the ability to reduce the bitterness of coffee. When added to coffee, cinnamon can help to mask some of the natural bitterness of the coffee beans. It results in a more enjoyable cup of coffee. 

It also helps make coffee more flavorful by adding sweetness and depth of flavor. In addition, cinnamon has also been shown to have numerous health benefits, such as improving digestion, lowering blood sugar levels, and reducing inflammation. 

Coconut Oil

Coconut oil is a major ingredient in bulletproof coffee. It makes coffee less bitter and flavorful. The oil is a great alternative to sugar and other sweeteners. It will provide several health benefits, such as improving your cognitive function, boosting your energy levels, and improving your skin health. Coconut oil is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties that reduce inflammation throughout the body. 

Avoid Adding Creamer to Coffee to Make It Sweeter

Coffee creamers are non-dairy additives. It contains trans fat, a type of unsaturated fat that has negative effects on health. So, health experts discourage adding creamer to coffee to enhance its taste.

Trans fats are responsible for increasing LDL or bad cholesterol. Similarly, it decreases levels of HDL or good cholesterol levels. It can increase the risk of heart disease and stroke. Moreover, trans fats are also associated with other health problems, such as diabetes and inflammatory diseases. For these reasons, it is important to limit your intake of coffee creamer. Instead, you should consider using another type of healthy coffee additive.

Final Words

Sugar is not the only solution to make coffee less bitter. You have many healthy ingredients that can be added to coffee to make it sweeter and tasty. In most cases, coffee becomes bitter due to a lack of proper brewing and poor quality of beans. If you are familiar with them, you can prevent the bitter taste without adding anything.


I currently reside at Millburn, NJ, United States. I'm a skilled barista and roaster known for my passion for coffee and dedication to creating the perfect cup. I have a strong following of loyal customers who appreciate my expertise and friendly demeanor. In my free time, I enjoy trying new coffee recipes and experimenting with different brewing techniques.

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