Last updated: August 13, 2021

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In today's text we will talk about the solution for coffee lovers who want to make that little root coffee from handcrafted roasted beans: the coffee roaster.

Very popular in Colonial Brazil until the middle of the last century, small coffee roasters, reminiscent of life in the countryside, of grandma's house, gradually disappeared from Brazilian life.

However, with the current movement to value specialty coffees and the popularization of gourmet coffees, coffee roasters are coming back into fashion, and becoming an object of desire for many coffee drinkers.

In this Review we will give you tips on how to choose the ideal coffee roaster for you, as well as present the best options on the market and what to consider when choosing the perfect roaster type and model for your needs.




Summary

  • To choose a coffee roaster, some aspects need to be taken into consideration. As it is a product intended for the preparation of food items, it is important that it is chosen based on quality and efficiency. Take into consideration the usage indications of each model, as well as size and design suitable for your needs.
  • Some of the variables that should be evaluated for the best choice at the time of purchase are: type, material, model and capacity, among other product features.
  • More difficult to find in physical shops, coffee roasters can be purchased online for around 50 for the homemade manual versions, reaching thousands of reais for semi-industrial or industrial electric versions.

The Best Coffee Roaster: Our Picks

Buying Guide

If you are a true coffee lover, you should look for more and more ways to drink fresh and highly tasty coffee. The coffee roaster is a product that every coffee lover should know about.

Do you want to learn more about them? We will bring you all the information throughout this complete Buying Guide. Read on with us!

homem cheirando café que saiu do torrador de café industrial

The coffee roaster can be domestic or industrial. (Source: mavoimage / 123RF)

What is the coffee roaster what are its advantages?

The grain of coffee in natura in nothing resembles in flavor and aroma the processed grain that gives origin to the drink so appreciated in several parts of the world.

It is the roasting process that transforms the grain until it reaches the tone, smell, shape and texture that delights millions of coffee lovers.

During the roasting process, the bean is heated to 180º - 240º degrees, losing humidity and, similar to what happens with popcorn, producing pops that make the beans bigger and lighter.

At this stage the coffee starches are transformed into sugars, and the bean also changes colour, becoming medium dark or light according to the roasting time.

Imagem mostra grãos de café torrados

Roasting time determines the final aroma and taste of the coffee. (Source: Negativespaca.co/ Pexels).

A good roasting process requires care, since it is determinant for the final flavor and aroma achieved by the beans. Mistakes in the roasting phase can ruin even the most special beans. The more roasted and darker the bean, the more bitter the coffee becomes.

Generally, 7 minutes of roasting is enough for light coffee. Coffee roasted for nine to 11 minutes is medium in colour, more full-bodied and harsh.

Fifteen minutes is enough time to obtain a darker bean, which will make a stronger and tastier coffee. However, the ideal roasting time may vary according to the origin and quality of the bean.

The biggest advantage of the coffee roaster is that, knowing the process well, and with quality beans and origin, you will be able to produce superior quality coffee and according to what pleases your taste, having full control over the entire production process and the exact periods in which the bean is at its freshest, with the maximum flavor and aroma for consumption.

The conventional roaster has mechanisms so that the grains are in constant movement avoiding that they stick to each other or burn unevenly. The mechanism can be driven by cranks or be automated. The process, besides roasting, also dries the grains.

Advantages
  • Coffee can be roasted according to your taste
  • There are electric versions that are more practical and silent
  • Possibility of unprecedented and personalized creations
Disadvantages
  • Process can be complicated for beginners
  • Manual versions are noisy and the process can be tiring
  • Product can be bulky and require structure for use

Electric or manual coffee roaster?

As we mentioned before, coffee roasting involves the need for prior knowledge of the process in order to obtain good results. Before purchasing your roaster, make sure the type and level of technique required to use the product are compatible with yours.

Check the possibilities of use of the chosen model and if it will fully meet your objectives. Some models are capable of cooling and performing other stages of the process.

Check carefully the manufacturer's specifications to know the full potential of the chosen model.

As there is not a wide range of home roasters, it is quite easy to find videos on the internet with the models in use.

Research the model you have chosen and try to check if the way it is used, the roasting time, the sound emitted, the levels of external heat and smoke generated correspond to your expectations.

Some manual models can be time-consuming and tiring, since the crank needs to be turned without interruption during the whole roasting process. In addition, they can emit a high-pitched sound, considered unpleasant by many people. If this is the case for you, consider an electric model.

Electric toaster Manual toaster
Smoke Does not generate smoke Can generate smoke
Operation More practical, does not require user manipulation Handle needs to be rotated without interruptions throughout the process
Heat distribution Heat is distributed evenly generating uniform roasting Heat distribution can vary according to the source and user experience

How much does it cost?

The price of coffee roasters will fluctuate greatly according to product type, material and capacity.

You can purchase a homemade manual coffee roaster. The electric versions, on the other hand, are a little more expensive.

Purchase criteria: Factors to compare coffee roaster models

Some factors are fundamental for you to know how to recognise the ideal coffee roaster for your needs and expectations. They are:

Type

Coffee roasters can be electric or manual. The manual ones are usually composed of a spherical or cylindrical drum connected to a crank. They must be used coupled to a heat source such as a wood cooker, industrial or conventional cooker flame.

In the manual model, the crank needs to be turned uninterruptedly during the whole process, which can take from 7 to 20 minutes, depending on the capacity of the product, the power of the flame used and the quantity of grains being roasted.

The electric models, on the other hand, are more practical. The mechanisms may differ according to the model and manufacturer. But, in general, they do not require constant action from the user, who is only responsible for monitoring the toasting time and temperature.

Material

Usually made of steel, the coffee roaster can have components made of steel, cast iron, wood or rubber.

Pay attention to the type and quality of the materials used in the manufacturing of your coffee roaster, for they directly interfere in the quality, performance and durability of the product.

Capacity

The capacity of the coffee roasters is usually specified in litres or kilos units. Always choose the roaster according to your real need, and respect the capacity at the moment of the use.

Using a roaster with a capacity below or above your specification can harm the roasting process and the roasting level.

If you need to roast a larger quantity than the product can support, remember that the roasting process is usually fast, taking from 7 to 40 minutes, depending on the quantity, method and model of roaster used.

Roasting becomes faster after the first batch, when the product is heated. Therefore, the process can be carried out several times in a row until the desired quantity is processed.

Design

A detail that can be very important. The type of coffee roaster already predetermines the product design. However, you can choose the style, shape and colour you like the most.

Those who like to buy coffee-related equipment also like to leave it exposed and use it as a decoration object while not in use, so it is worth considering design as an important criterion for purchase.

(Source of the highlighted image: Waneshih/ Pixabay)

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