Best dark roast coffee

10 of the Best Dark Roast Coffee Options

It can be hard to find that perfect brew to start your day, but thankfully, if you are a fan of dark roast, there are many options for you, it’s narrowing them down and finding the best dark roast coffee for you that’s the difficult part. So to make your job a little bit easier, we have outlined some of our favorite dark roast coffees, nine of them to be exact! So before you take your morning sip of coffee, peruse your options, your ideal dark roast could be waiting on this very list!

Top 10 Best Dark Roast Coffee Options

Preview
Best Pick
Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso Roast — 100% Arabica — 6 bags (12 oz. each)
Strongest
DEATH WISH Whole Bean Coffee Dark Roast - The World's Strongest Coffee Bean - USA Organic Coffee Beans Bundle/Bulk - Fair Trade Arabica & Robusta Coffee - Real Dark Roast Coffee Beans (16 oz)
Best Value
Subtle Earth Organic Coffee - Dark Roast - Whole Bean Coffee - 100% Arabica Beans - Low Acidity and Non-GMO - 2lb bag
Real Good Coffee Company - Whole Bean Coffee - Extra Dark French Roast Coffee Beans - 2 Pound Bag - 100% Whole Arabica Beans - Grind at Home, Brew How You Like
Kicking Horse Coffee, Kick Ass, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, Certified Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher Coffee, 2.2 Lb, 35.2 Ounce
Title
Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso Roast — 100% Arabica — 6 bags (12 oz. each)
DEATH WISH Whole Bean Coffee Dark Roast - The World's Strongest Coffee Bean - USA Organic Coffee Beans Bundle/Bulk - Fair Trade Arabica & Robusta Coffee - Real Dark Roast Coffee Beans (16 oz)
Subtle Earth Organic Coffee - Dark Roast - Whole Bean Coffee - 100% Arabica Beans - Low Acidity and Non-GMO - 2lb bag
Real Good Coffee Company - Whole Bean Coffee - Extra Dark French Roast Coffee Beans - 2 Pound Bag - 100% Whole Arabica Beans - Grind at Home, Brew How You Like
Kicking Horse Coffee, Kick Ass, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, Certified Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher Coffee, 2.2 Lb, 35.2 Ounce
Rating
4.7
4.7
4.6
4.5
4.5
Brand
Starbucks
Death Wish Coffee Co.
Cafe Don Pablo
Real Good Coffee Company
Kicking Horse Coffee
Flavor
Espresso Roast
Chocolate
Chocolatey
French Roast Dark
Kick Ass - Dark Roast
Item Form
Whole Bean
Whole Bean
Whole Bean
Whole Bean
Whole Bean
Roast Level
Dark Roast
Dark Roast
Dark Roast
Dark Roast
Dark Roast
Best Pick
Preview
Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso Roast — 100% Arabica — 6 bags (12 oz. each)
Title
Starbucks Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee — Espresso Roast — 100% Arabica — 6 bags (12 oz. each)
Rating
4.7
Brand
Starbucks
Flavor
Espresso Roast
Item Form
Whole Bean
Roast Level
Dark Roast
Strongest
Preview
DEATH WISH Whole Bean Coffee Dark Roast - The World's Strongest Coffee Bean - USA Organic Coffee Beans Bundle/Bulk - Fair Trade Arabica & Robusta Coffee - Real Dark Roast Coffee Beans (16 oz)
Title
DEATH WISH Whole Bean Coffee Dark Roast - The World's Strongest Coffee Bean - USA Organic Coffee Beans Bundle/Bulk - Fair Trade Arabica & Robusta Coffee - Real Dark Roast Coffee Beans (16 oz)
Rating
4.7
Brand
Death Wish Coffee Co.
Flavor
Chocolate
Item Form
Whole Bean
Roast Level
Dark Roast
Best Value
Preview
Subtle Earth Organic Coffee - Dark Roast - Whole Bean Coffee - 100% Arabica Beans - Low Acidity and Non-GMO - 2lb bag
Title
Subtle Earth Organic Coffee - Dark Roast - Whole Bean Coffee - 100% Arabica Beans - Low Acidity and Non-GMO - 2lb bag
Rating
4.6
Brand
Cafe Don Pablo
Flavor
Chocolatey
Item Form
Whole Bean
Roast Level
Dark Roast
Preview
Real Good Coffee Company - Whole Bean Coffee - Extra Dark French Roast Coffee Beans - 2 Pound Bag - 100% Whole Arabica Beans - Grind at Home, Brew How You Like
Title
Real Good Coffee Company - Whole Bean Coffee - Extra Dark French Roast Coffee Beans - 2 Pound Bag - 100% Whole Arabica Beans - Grind at Home, Brew How You Like
Rating
4.5
Brand
Real Good Coffee Company
Flavor
French Roast Dark
Item Form
Whole Bean
Roast Level
Dark Roast
Preview
Kicking Horse Coffee, Kick Ass, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, Certified Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher Coffee, 2.2 Lb, 35.2 Ounce
Title
Kicking Horse Coffee, Kick Ass, Dark Roast, Whole Bean, Certified Organic, Fairtrade, Kosher Coffee, 2.2 Lb, 35.2 Ounce
Rating
4.5
Brand
Kicking Horse Coffee
Flavor
Kick Ass - Dark Roast
Item Form
Whole Bean
Roast Level
Dark Roast

1. Starbucks Espresso Roast

The name Starbucks is probably one of the most notorious in the coffee world, and that is not for nothing. Starbucks’ Espresso Roast is the perfect blend to start your day, with hints of caramel to bring a sweetness to the bitter dark roast taste. While this is not from a small family-run business, you nevertheless can be assured of a consistent quality with every purchase. 

Specifications:

  • Brand: Starbucks
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Espresso Roast
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Widely available
  • Many buying options
  • Caramelly taste
  • Quality is consistent
Cons
  • Delivery issues might occur

Sample Customer Review … Best Sumatra I’ve found. Surprised that Starbucks has such high quality. I’ve tried many other brands of Sumatra (in the bean) and this turned out to be the best tasting and considerably more economical than most others. This includes locally available products from specialty roasters. I cold-brew the coffee from freshly ground beans. This has a more robust flavor and more interesting taste notes than the others.

Read more reviews at Amazon.com

2. Death Wish Coffee

If you need a coffee with a little more zip in each sip, Death Wish Coffee is the perfect dark roast brew for you! You’ve probably heard this brand’s name thrown around due to its high caffeine content, and Death Wish more than delivers, bringing you hours of clarity and awakeness not found in your standard coffee.

With rich notes of cherry and smooth dark chocolate, this coffee is delicious as well as effective, and is relatively low in acidity to boot! Overall, if you are looking for a dark roast to get you through the nine to five, and not leave you feeling absolutely drained when you get home, we highly recommend Death Wish for you. 

Specifications:

  • Brand: Death Wish Coffee Co.
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Chocolate
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Very high caffeine content
  • Rich flavors
  • Easy to find
  • Less acidic than other coffees
Cons
  • Pricey
  • Might be too much caffeine for some

Sample Customer Review… I am usually a tea drinker because it is so hard to find coffee I really like. Death Wish fills the bill in SOOOO many ways. It is rich, flavorful, and not at all acidic. There are notes of fruit and chocolate that come out even more with a bit of milk. I was a fan from my very first cup. I have never before in my entire life had coffee that was so infinitely satisfying that I am done after about a cup and a half.

It is not sour or acidic the way a lot of coffee is, and believe it or not, it even tastes good after it cools off. I bought it because I love the name, and now that I’ve tried it anybody trying to take it away from me would do so only if they had a Death Wish.

Read more reviews on Amazon.com

3. Subtle Earth Organic Dark Roast Coffee

Like Lifeboost Coffee, Don Pablo’s Subtle Earth Organic Coffee is a low acid dark roast, but what’s even more impressive is that these beans are prepared specifically to order, so you have the guarantee of freshness and quality in every batch! This sweet coffee has notes of caramel, honey, and cocoa with just the smallest bite of bitterness, but has the smoothest finish and an incredibly pleasant aftertaste.

These beans are also free of GMOs and are certified organic, so you can feel just a bit healthier after encountering its chocolaty flavor.

Specifications:

  • Brand: Cafe Don Pablo
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Chocolatey
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • GMO free
  • Organic
  • Business is family run
  • Beans are prepared in small batches
Cons
  • Too sweet in flavor
  • Hard to find ground coffee in bulk

Sample Customer Review… I order these coffee beans on a regular basis. I have tried other brands but return to this one for its rich dark smooth flavor, without the bitterness of some Dark Roast coffee. Since I like my coffee strong, these coffee beans make for the perfect cup of coffee for my liking. You cannot beat the quality for the price and I will be returning to order more as long as the cost remains affordable. A big plus is always the fast reliable delivery of a fresh bag of coffee beans!

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4. Real Good Coffee Co Dark French Roast

Real Good Coffee Co has your caffeine addiction in mind when they choose to have their beans available in bulk, and not only do they cater to your caffeine needs, but they have crafted a delicious and unique brew that almost guarantees you’ll use all the beans you’re given! Their dark roast coffee is rich with hints of cedar, bell pepper, and lemon, an unforgettable combination that creates a euphoric aroma all on its own. This coffee is a great buy if you are looking for a dependable and affordable coffee that is sold in bulk. 

Specifications:

  • Brand: Real Good Coffee Company
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: French Roast Dark
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Affordable
  • Organic
  • Sold in bulk
Cons
  • There are no sizing options

Sample Customer Review…I had the best cup of coffee ever from the Real Good Coffee Company, although I would call them the Most Excellent Coffee Company!! I bought the whole bean 2-pound coffee and I ground it in my coffee grinder to a fine ground, feels almost like silk. I put the coffee beans in the freezer for later use. I never grind more than I need, keeping the beans fresh for the next cup. Highly Recommended!! Thank you Real Good Coffee Company for the great cup of joe!!

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5. Kick Ass Coffee

Just like the name indicates, this is not a coffee to be taken lightly or to be looked over. Kick Ass coffee is a dark roast that is rich in flavor, holding notes of chocolate, licorice, and mouth-watering molasses, that pairs perfectly with a chilly winter morning! Though this blend goes great with a french press, its flavor shines through no matter how you choose to brew! Overall, as far as flavor and quality are concerned, Kicking Horse’s “Kick Ass” Coffee, is very aptly named. 

Specifications:

  • Brand: Kicking Horse Coffee
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Kick Ass – Dark Roast
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Excellent flavor profile
  • Easy to find in stores and online
Cons
  • No 12oz bag
  • Sometimes, but rarely, the beans are stale

Sample Customer Review…This is the most delicious coffee we have ever tasted. Caffeine or no caffeine beats any coffee we’ve ever tasted. What really puts this product over the top is that it is not only decaffeinated and organic but the decaf process is done by water naturally. I was running low on Kicking Horse so while I was perusing my fav health food store, I noticed they had a decaf, organic, and water processed whole bean coffee on sale and decided to try it.

It’s OK but nowhere near as delicious as Kicking Horse. Used to order a very good coffee from Portland, Oregon which was recently bought out by another coffee company, but Kicking Horse beats our old brand by a mile. We are now spoiled for any other brand of coffee. The flavor of Kicking Horse is rich, deep, and full-bodied without the slightest hint of bitterness or acidic effect. It really is outstanding. We love it!!

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6. Olde Brooklyn Coffee Italian Dark Roast 

If you like a strong dark roast coffee without any acidity, Old Brooklyn Coffee’s Italian Dark Roast is the one for you! This Italian roast has a full-bodied taste with no bitter or acidic aftertaste. These coffee beans are dark, oily, and authentic and provide a strong traditional dark roast. The dark taste has a slight chocolate-ty aftertaste and is perfect for those who are looking for a very dark-tasting coffee.

Specifications:

  • Brand: Olde Brooklyn Coffee
  • Item Form: Whole Bean 
  • Roast Level: Italian Dark Roast 
  • Flavor: Breakfast Blend 
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated 
Pros
  • Dark flavor
  • Very Strong
  • Full-Bodied
  • Good for Cold Brew
  • No bitter or acidic after taste
  • Good Price
Cons
  • Can produce a burning-like smell
  • Sometimes come over-roasted

Sample Customer Review…It IS strong, which is important to me however, there is no bitter aftertaste. It has a great coffee flavor and I don’t have to press the strong button on my Keurig. So long as they keep the price and the “awesome” packaging they now have I will continue to be a customer. The one thing I abhor is when everything is just as you like it, it won’t be long before they make a change. I hope this is not true with this company. So this being our 2nd order from them and nothing significant has changed WE ARE VERY HAPPY AND WOULD LIKE TO STAY HAPPY WITH OUR COFFEE:)

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7. Lifeboost Dark Roast Coffee

If you are looking for your next Dark Roast blend, look no further! Lifeboost coffee is a delicious dark roast that has its beans grown in Nicaragua at the altitude of 5700 feet, reducing its exposure to bacteria and fungi, is hand-washed in mountain spring water, and dried in methods that help reduce mycotoxins! That’s not all, Lifeboost is also a low acid coffee that seeks to eliminate any negative consequences of your morning cup, and is completely GMO and pesticide-free.

Not only can you drink this coffee and enjoy its rich flavor without the tummy ache or heartburn, but you can take a sip with a clear conscience, knowing exactly where your beans are coming from and the environmentally friendly way in which they were grown and raised, which is why this is number one in our list of the best dark roast coffee!

Specifications:

  • Brand: Lifeboost Coffee
  • Item Form: Ground
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Dark Roast
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Environmentally friendly
  • Fair Trade
  • Healthy
  • Low-acid
  • GMO fee
  • No pesticides used
  • Available in ground or whole form
Cons
  • Pricey

Sample Customer Review… I love coffee and I tried many different kinds at the end I was left with heartburn and acidity in my stomach until I tried Lifeboost. It was amazing. No acidity no heartburn finally I can enjoy my cup of coffee. I love especially the flavored ones and I tried almost all the flavors from Lifeboost and I love them all. I will never drink another coffee again and to know that it’s organic and from a single origin makes it over the top. I am hooked and I enjoy it. I get the beans to store them in the freezer and grind one bag at a time and use my french press. ☕️

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8. Blue Horse 100% Kona Coffee

Grown in the Kona districts of the Big Island of Hawaii, Blue Horse is certainly not cheap, but what it lacks in easy affordability it makes up for in quality and flavor. Blue Horse has a vivacious and biting semi-sweet chocolate taste, with strong notes of caramel that melt in your mouth with every warm sip, and the aroma alone is enough to have you hooked! This coffee is also packaged in a resealable bag, so your coffee stays fresh longer, which will ultimately help since we guarantee that you’ll want to savor every cup!

Specifications:

  • Brand: Blue Horse 100% Kona Coffee 
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Chocolate, Caramel
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • 100% Kona
  • Rich flavors
  • Package is sealable
  • Aromatic
Cons
  • Pricey

Sample Customer Review…This is a good Kona coffee! The roast is not overly dark but is just dark enough to give a nice sheen to the beans. I make both a pot of coffee using a drip-style machine, as well as lattes using an espresso machine. These beans are smooth and flavorful in both types of drinks. A good Kona coffee at a good price. The vendor is great too – fast service and they have that aloha spirit that I miss here on the mainland. Good coffee, good service from good people, and a good price.

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9. Koffee Kult Dark Roast

If you are tired of oily coffee beans, then Koffee Kult is the best brand for you! This company strives to deliver non-oily beans with aromatic flavors, such as the strong cocoa, and smooth notes of cinnamon that accompany this brew. Not only does Koffee Kult have delicious flavors, but it is available in multiple sizes, so you don’t have to be stuck with a ginormous package of a coffee you might not end up loving. While there have been reports of the dark roast being weak, the flavors more than makeup for it, if they are one of your main priorities!

Specifications:

  • Brand: Koffee Kult
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Cocoa, Cinnamon
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Comes in multiple sizes
  • Great consistency
  • Aromatic
  • Bold flavor
Cons
  • Beans can be weak

Sample Customer Review…This coffee is simply fantastic. It’s almost like drinking dark chocolate. I’ve felt no need to use sugar and just a little cream. I have used this in the Aeropress and made both coffee and espresso with perfect results. Now for the little things. The bag it comes in is great. Easy pull tab to open it and a nice resealable liner that is thick and not flimsy. Also, a valve on the back to squeeze the air out. The bag when opened is actually like a spout so it is easy to pout out the beans without trying to funnel them. Sounds silly but I appreciate little design choices like that.

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10. Black Knight Organic Coffee

If you love a dark roast, and the strong flavors associated with it, then Fresh Roasted Coffee’s Black Knight coffee is the perfect blend for you! It is a coffee that is overflowing with tropical notes with a splash of caramel flavor, and while it might be a tad too strong in flavor for those who aren’t accustomed to dark roast, for those who enjoy it, it is a great way to start your day, especially since it tastes great whether brewed hot or cold!

Specifications: 

  • Brand: Fresh Roasted Coffee LLC
  • Item Form: Whole Bean
  • Roast Level: Dark Roast
  • Flavor: Black Knight
  • Caffeine Content: Caffeinated
Pros
  • Organic
  • Dark flavor
  • Fair trade
  • Versatile for different types of brewing
  • Great for cold brew
Cons
  • Very strong to those not accustomed to dark roast

Sample Customer Review…My husband is very picky about his coffee and loves this stuff. The price is definitely the best I can find too. I have been buying this coffee for over a year now and we have never received any bad bags. they are always fresh and great. We have used these beans in our stovetop espresso maker as well as our french press and drip over. As long as they are ground properly they are great for any kind of brew. The flavor is perfect and not too acidic.

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Why Look for the Best Dark Roast Coffee?

Dark Roast vs Light Roast

First off, let’s establish the fundamental differences between light and dark roast. Light roast coffee is, naturally, goes through less roasting than its dark counterpart, making it denser due to the lack of evaporated moisture, and leaving it with a thinner body and a more delicate taste. Dark roast on the other hand, is roasted for longer, meaning they are drier and do not exhibit as complex of a flavor profile as lighter roasted beans, and they typically have a bit less caffeine. 

The Benefits of Dark Roast

While in comparison to light roast, per the above description, dark roast seems to have less of an appeal, the truth is in fact, not all that straightforward. While dark roast coffee might not be able to convey a wide array of flavors, the individual flavors featured are bolder as a result. Not only are the ways in which the levels of roast exhibit flavors different, but dark roast coffee is typically less acidic, and each roast has its own added health benefits.

Dark roast, for example, is full of antioxidants (such as Vitamin E and glutathione), can aid in weight loss, have higher levels of N-methyl pyridinium which reduces the amount of acid produced in the stomach, and have a greater amount of phenylindanes which aid in the prevention of nervous system deteriorating diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. All in all, there are lots of benefits to drinking dark roast. 

Dark Roast: Origins

Believe it or not, where your coffee beans are grown has a lot of bearing on the quality, acidity, and flavor of your coffee beans. Here we have outlined what these origins have to offer:

South America

  • A large amount of the world’s coffee supply comes out of Columbia and Brazil, and they typically grow above average quality beans with lower levels of acidity than other regions. 

Africa

  • Arabica beans are probably one of the most well known coffee beans to come out of Africa, and they produce bold and strong coffees with a wide variety of flavors, that often lean towards the fruitier side. 

Central America

  • Central America has a very wide range of beans and an even wider range of flavors, but typically these coffees carry with them distinct aromas, rich flavors, and a fair amount of acidity (generally about mid-level).

Southeast Asia

  • Arabica beans can also be found in Southeast Asia, but the Robusta beans are a bit more prominent, holding earthy notes within bold flavors.

India

  • Many of the coffees that hail from India bring with them very mellow and rich flavors also prominently featuring the Arabica and Robusta beans. 

Conclusion

There are many things to consider when finding the dark roast coffee that is right for you, whether it be caffeine content, flavor, aroma, or just basic price, but overall they are all prevalent factors in the decision that could make or break your morning routine.

Our top pick is Death Wish Coffee simply due to its great taste and its hard-hitting caffeine content, but that being said, this amazing coffee might pack more of a punch than you would like, but that is why we have eight others lined up for you! So in the event you don’t love Death Wish as much as we do, or you simply want to go in another direction, scroll back up this list and find the coffee you’ve been waiting for!

Written by Katherine Schultz, Abigail Roth and Stephanie Parmiter


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