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Decaf Espresso: Less caffeine and still a great espresso experience!

Decaf Espresso: Less caffeine and still a great espresso experience!

Caffeine is a stimulant that can have many effects on the body, including increased heart rate and blood pressure, anxiety, insomnia, and even addiction. It’s also been shown to increase the risk of miscarriage in pregnant women who consume high amounts of caffeine.

Decaf espresso is a great way to enjoy coffee without any side effects! The process of decaffeination usually more than 90% of the caffeine in coffee so you’ll still get all the flavor but none of the negative side effects.

Read this Golden Sin Coffee post to find out more about decaf espresso!

What is decaf espresso?

Before we dive into the definition of decaf espresso, we’ll look at the explanation of the 2 words: decaf and espresso.

What is decaf?

Decaf refers to a method of decaffeination. When referring to coffee, it means the beans have already been stripped of their caffeine before being sold.

Decaf refers to a process of decaffeination. Decaf espresso is a type of coffee that has been brewed from beans that have already been decaffeinated.

What is espresso?

Espresso refers to the method in which the coffee is brewed. It’s s a European invention and comes from Italy. Espresso comes from the Italian verb “esprimere” and means “to press out”.

Espresso, which means “to express”. The method of espresso is to use more pressure and a finer grind than regular coffee. Espresso also refers to the drink itself: water is shot through the grounds at a pressure of at least 9 bars. The coffee-to-water ratio is 1:2, for every amount of grounds, you’ll need about 2x water.

Espresso utilizes higher pressure than regular drip coffee and the water passes through grounds much quicker, that’s what’s called a “shot”.

Do they contain no caffeine?

No, they still contain caffeine, but a smaller amount.

Coffee contains, on average, 75 to 95 milligrams of caffeine per cup. Decaf coffee also contains about three to five milligrams of caffeine per cup. So you can say about 1/15th to 1/25th the regular amount. It all depends on what beans you use of course. Remember, we guide you, no exact science. Review your package.

What effects can caffeine have?

Some people seem to think that decaf coffee is a weaker version of the real deal: coffee. Decaf coffee can give you the healthy perks regular coffee has. There are always people who don’t like the caffeine in coffee because their body has difficulties processing it.

  1. Caffeine is quickly processed in your blood after drinking coffee. Caffeine stimulates your brain to produce stress hormones, adrenaline, and cortisol. A small amount of caffeine can improve your focus, but that’s not the case for everyone. some people have extra side-effects like extra stress, less sleep, higher heart rate, and more.
  2. The more coffee you’ll drink, the more cortisone your body produces. Cortisone is an anti-inflammatory hormone and can stay in the body for a long time. When it almost all exits, you’ll feel more fatigued than before. It slows down the bloodstream to your brains, this results in more anxiety, alienation, and less focus.

Cortisol is a stress hormone that’s being produced by your adrenal glands. This hormone affects many functions in your body, including your energy levels and metabolism. Cortisol is typically used to coordinate a stress response.

  1. Caffeine sensitivity during pregnancy can increase the risk of a number of complications, such as miscarriage, low birth weight, and even stillbirth.
  2. Living a healthy lifestyle implies a good sleep pattern and a lot of room for relaxation. Caffeine-sensitive people have a harder time because of their extra stress and can easily fall into depression.
  3. Decaf coffee has increased in popularity because of the better decaf processes. Nowadays, you can’t smell or taste the difference (mostly) between decaf and a regular cup.

What’s the difference between decaf espresso and no decaf espresso?

Decaf isn’t the same as no-decaf coffee (also called local). If you appreciate the flavor of regular coffee but know you’re sensitive to caffeine, then decaf espresso is a good option for you.

You can think of it as those beers that are called NA, non-alcoholic, or non-beer and still contain a small amount of alcohol but so low that you can call it non-alcoholic.

There are even coffees that have a low amount of caffeine because of the beans. People tend to buy low-acid coffees for better digestion.

Do they taste the same?

Yes, it’s hard to tell they taste different. If you’ll taste blindfolded, chances are high that you won’t recognize the difference, unless you’re very sensitive to caffeine.

Thanks to the decaf processes, the smell, and taste of these coffees are hard to tell apart from the regular black gold.

Does decaf mean nocaf?

No, surely not. Decaf means the coffee beans have undergone a decaf process and thus have reduced amounts of caffeine. The decaf process always takes place before the roasting process. When the roasting is done, the taste will taste almost equal to coffee beans with caffeine.

Different methods of decaffing the coffee

There are different processes to decaf the coffee. Here we will give you a short overview of some popular methods without going too much into detail.

These methods can be divided into 2 main categories: Solvent-based and non-solvent-based.

Solvent-based processes

Solvent-based processes are processes that involve added chemicals, be it directly or indirectly to remove the caffeine.


This process is also referred to as the “Natural method”.

The beans are heated up (steamed) to prepare them for the solvent, they will be repeatedly processed with chemicals. In most cases, this will be methylene chloride or ethyl acetate. This process takes about half a day to remove the caffeine.

After this, the beans are heated up again to make sure all solvent is removed from the beans.

The Swiss water method and carbon dioxide-process (CO2) are both direct solvent-based processes. CO2 is very costly and thus used in large batches.


Coffee beans are put in very hot water for a few hours. Doing this extracts flavor, oils, caffeine, and other things from the beans.

The water is cut off and transferred so it can be washed again. This time with a solvent, mostly this will be methylene chloride. By doing this, the solvent attacks the caffeine part of the beans.

This mix will be heated, removing the solvent and caffeine in the process.

Finally, the coffee beans will be added to the liquid to take in the coffee oils and flavor of the coffee.


How much caffeine is in decaf espresso vs regular?

Regular coffee contains, on average, about 75 to 95 milligrams of caffeine per cup. Decaf coffee also contains 3 to 5 milligrams of caffeine per cup. The ratio is between 1/15th to 1/25th to regular coffee. Remember, it’s all about the beans. Generally, Robusta beans (mostly used in blends), have higher levels of caffeine compared to Arabica beans.

Will decaf espresso keep me awake?

That’s surely possible. Decaf espresso does have a certain amount of caffeine. It depends from person to person as this won’t be the main factor responsible for your sleepless night. It does contribute to it. If you’re in doubt, go and get some medical advice.

Is decaf espresso bad for you?

As with most foods and drinks, they can be bad for your heart if consumed at certain levels. That’s also the case for coffee and decaf espresso.

Decaf espresso also comes mostly with lower amounts of antioxidants and other nutrients. We recommend you consume decaf espresso in moderate amounts, just like any caffeinated coffee.

Are the chemicals used to decaffeinate coffee bad?

It depends on the method used. Some methods require more chemicals than others. If you’re unsure, you can get advice from your doctor.

There are concerns about methylene chloride. If you want to be sure, go for a decaf coffee that has been decaffeinated naturally or via the Swiss water method.

Is decaf coffee okay for anxiety?

As with most medical issues. There’s no general answer. The human body is different. We’d say that for people that do have anxiety, consuming decaf coffee instead of regular coffee can help because of the lower amount of caffeine. Caffeine is known for worsening symptoms. Get some medical advice from your doctor.


So, wrapping up. Caffeine sensitivity is an important concept to understand when it comes to improving your lifestyle when you’re pregnant or your body reacts poorly to caffeine.

Thanks to the processes of decaffeinating, people won’t even be able to tell the difference between decaf and regular coffee. You can have the best of both worlds: with decaf espresso, you’ll have less caffeine and still a great flavor!

Enjoy your coffee!