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14 Best Medium Roast Coffee in 2024

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Hi, I’m Tim. I am a former barista and coffee enthusiast. I brew various medium roast coffee drinks several times a week and have personally tried dozens of options. 

My number one choice for the best medium roast coffee is the Kicking Horse Coffee, Smart Ass, Medium Roast Coffee. Because it is affordable, tastes great, and goes well with several brewing methods.

kicking horse coffee smart ass medium roast

Kicking Horse Coffee Medium Roast: Best Overall

  • Roast: Medium
  • Best for: Drip coffee, pour-over
  • Flavor profile: Tart red currant, sugar cane, and milk chocolate
  • Available In: 10 oz bag
  • Grind size: Medium
  • Price: $$
  • Origin: Multi-origin, Africa, Central America, South America
  • Organic: USDA Organic

That said, coffee is very subjective. You probably don’t have the extact same tastes as me and may prefer a different brand. 

To cover everyone’s preferences and tastes, we put together this list of the top 14 medium roast coffees. 

Keep reading to find your favorite medium roast. 

Top 14 Medium Roast Coffees

  1. Kicking Horse Coffee Medium RoastBest Overall
  2. Stumptown Coffee CoffeeRunner Up
  3. Black Rifle Coffee Fit FuelBest For Cold Brew
  4. French Press CoffeeBest For French Press
  5. Illy Classico Ground CoffeeBest For Espresso 
  6. Lifeboost Coffee Medium Roast – Best Decaf
  7. Lavazza Italiano Whole BeanBest For Moka Pot
  8. Lavazza, Qualità Rossa – Best in UK
  9. Grinders Smooth CremaBest in Australia
  10. Volcanica Sulawesi, Celebes KalossiBest Organic Coffee
  11. Amazon Fresh Whole Bean CoffeeBudget Option
  12. Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee Best Coffee Concentrate
  13. Java House Cold Brew Coffee Best Read-to-Drink 
  14. Starbucks VIA Instant CoffeeBest Instant Coffee

14 Best Medium Roast Coffees in 2023

1. Kicking Horse Coffee Medium Roast – Best Overall

kicking horse coffee smart ass medium roast
Best forDrip coffee, pour-over
Flavor profileTart red currant, sugar cane, and milk chocolate
Available In10 oz bag
Grind sizeMedium
OriginMulti-origin, Africa, Central America, South America
OrganicUSDA Organic


  • Less expensive than other options
  • Unique tart red currant tasting note
  • Available in most supermarkets and online
  • Good for drip machines, cold brew, and pour-over brewing methods


  • Smaller amount of grounds (10 oz)
  • Too bitter for some drinkers

Kicking Horse Coffee, Smart Ass, Medium Roast Ground coffee is the best medium roast due to its delicious tasting notes, great quality, affordable price, and USDA Organic certification.  

The Kicking Horse coffee has a complex aroma with tasting notes of tart red currant, sugar cane, and milk chocolate.

Its smooth taste and balanced body pair well with milk, creamer, or sugar. But you can enjoy it black too.

This coffee comes in a 10 oz bag and has a medium grind size, making it suitable for drip coffee, pour-over, or cold brew.

Kicking Horse Coffee’s Smart Ass Medium Roast Grounds are USDA-certified organic and certified Fairtrade.

This ensures the grounds meet ethical and environmental standards throughout the farming and production process.

This ground coffee is priced below average, making it a good option for those on a budget.

Furthermore, the packaging provides the roast date for maximum freshness. So, you can choose the freshest bag when you shop for it. 

Kicking Horse Coffee, Smart Ass coffee is multi-origin. The company gets its Arabica beans from various regions in Africa, Central America, and South America to achieve a diverse flavor profile.

One disadvantage is that it contains less coffee per bag, specifically 10 oz, in comparison to other brands that offer sizes ranging from 12-16 oz.

On the other hand, getting a smaller quantity of grounds may have advantages for some drinkers. For example, it will help you use them all before they get stale.

Although Smart Ass has unique tasting notes, some reviewers find it too bitter (which I don’t agree with). 

If this coffee doesn’t sound right for you, perhaps the Stumptown Coffee Roasters Holler Mtn. Coffee up next does. 

2. Stumptown Coffee Coffee – Runner Up

stumptown coffee roasters holler mtn. coffee
Best forDrip coffee, pour-over
Flavor profileFull body with creamy &
caramel flavors
Available In12 oz & 18 oz bags
Grind sizeMedium
OriginMultiple origins
OrganicUSDA Certified Organic


  • USDA-Certified Organic
  • Dynamic, rich flavor
  • Available in most grocery stores and online marketplaces
  • Good for several brewing methods


  • Costs more than other options
  • Some dislike the citrus undertones

Stumptown Coffee Roasters Holler Mountain Ground Coffee is my second choice because it is USDA-certified organic, has a balanced flavor, and has exceptional quality.

This Stumptown coffee has moderate strength and mild bitterness, with subtle citrusy tasting notes. Most people enjoy it, but a few reviewers dislike the citrus undertones. 

If you enjoy medium roasts, you need to try the Holler Mountain ground coffee. It has fantastic flavors of caramel and hazelnut that pair nicely with milk or your preferred creamer.

But if you prefer black coffee, don’t worry. It tastes fantastic black too. 

It is a medium-grind coffee, the right size for a standard coffee machine or a pour-over system.

The price of Stumptown Coffee Roasters Holler Mountain ground coffee is higher compared to other medium roasts.

So, if you’re frugal, this coffee might not be the most suitable option.

That said, Stumptown Coffee Roasters is USDA-Certified Organic and has great quality and taste, which justifies the higher price, in my opinion.

Because it is organic, you can trust that there are no harmful pesticides or GMOs.

The Stumptown Coffee Roasters Holler Mountain Ground Coffee is available in two sizes – 12 oz and 18 oz bags – 

You can buy it from various online retailers, including Amazon, as well as your local grocery store.

If you are seeking a medium roast for cold brewing instead, check out the Black Rifle Coffee Fit Fuel (Medium Roast) Whole Bean Coffee next. 

3. Black Rifle Coffee Fit Fuel – Best For Cold Brew

black rifle coffee fit fuel medium roast whole bean coffee
Best forCold brew, French press,
drip coffee, pour-over
Flavor profileMaple syrup and citrus tasting notes 
Available In12 oz bag
TypeWhole bean
OriginMultiple origins


  • Supports veterans and first responders
  • Great maple syrup and citrus taste 
  • Smoothness makes it useful as a pre-workout 


  • Expensive

The Black Rifle Coffee Fit Fuel (Medium Roast) Whole Bean Coffee is the top cold brew option because of its distinctive flavor, support for first responders and veterans, and potential as a substitute for pre-workout supplements.

This smooth, medium-roast coffee pairs well with different creamers in your cold brew.

And rather than consuming a pre-workout supplement that causes tingling sensations, Black Rifle Coffee (and I ) suggest drinking this coffee before your workout instead. It gives a great energy boost. 

Black Rifle sources its coffee beans from several locations to create a distinct multiple-origin blend.

This whole-bean coffee has tasting notes of maple syrup and citrus with a malt finish. It is best for those who enjoy black coffee or prefer to add cream and sugar.

To prepare this whole-bean coffee,  you have to grind it to a medium-coarse to coarse size before cold brewing.

Grinding the beans yourself results in a fresher taste. However, it does require additional effort in terms of preparation and cleaning.

One drawback is that this coffee is slightly pricier than others.

That said, Black Rifle contributes a substantial portion of its profits to veterans and first responders. So, if you buy this coffee, you also fund a good cause.

If you are looking for a French press coffee instead, consider trying the French Press Specialty Coffee, Coarse Ground, Primos Coffee Co.

4. French Press Coffee – Best For French Press

french press specialty coffee coarse ground primos coffee co
RoastMedium roast
Best ForFrench press, cold brew
Flavor profileFruit and cacao
Available In12 oz bag
TypeGround, coarse grind
OriginSingle origin, Nicaragua 


  • Low acid
  • Smooth and sweet with pleasant fruit and cacao notes
  • Coarse grind for French presses
  • Sustainably grown


  • More expensive than other options

The Primos Coffee Co French Press Specialty Coffee is the best option for French presses. It has a great flavor, is produced by a sustainable, small-batch roaster, and is coarsely ground for your French press.

This coffee is a medium roast, which is ideal for French press brewing. It offers a balanced flavor profile with hints of fruit and cacao, without being too overpowering.

If you enjoy a well-balanced cup of coffee with a smooth, sweet flavor and low acidity, this Primos Coffee Co coarse ground coffee should be your go-to French press coffee.

Primos Coffee Co provides a consistent grind size that is pre-ground to a coarse-grind size, ensuring it doesn’t pass through the filter on your French press.

Other brands of pre-ground coarse-grind coffee may contain smaller particles that can pass through the filter, potentially affecting the quality of your coffee.

This Primos Coffee Co French press coffee is priced slightly higher than other pre-ground coffee options for French presses.

However, it is made by a small batch roaster and grown with care, making it worth the additional cost.

Primos Coffee Company owns a farm in Nicaragua and has control over the entire process from planting to roasting, guaranteeing a consistent product.

The Primos Coffee Co French press specialty roast comes in a 12 oz bag with a resealable feature to maintain its freshness.

If you want a medium roast for your espresso, see the Illy Classico Espresso Ground Coffee, Medium Roast below. 

5. Illy Classico Ground Coffee – Best For Espresso

illy classico espresso ground coffee medium roast
Best forEspresso, Moka Pots
Flavor profileCaramel, orange blossom
and jasmine
Available In8.8 ounce can
Grind sizeFine
OriginMultiple Origin


  • Balanced flavor 
  • Low acid
  • Great packaging


  • Medium roast too weak for some espresso drinkers

The Illy Classico Espresso Medium Roast ground coffee is my recommendation for espressos due to its balanced flavor, all-natural ingredients, and enjoyable taste.

The coffee is made from 100% Arabica beans sourced from various origins. It has a balanced flavor profile without being too strong or weak, with hints of caramel and chocolate.

Illy coffee never contains preservatives and has been honored 10 times on the “World’s Most Ethical Companies” list. This shows its coffee is ethically farmed and sourced.

The flavor of these espresso grounds is smooth and strong, but some may find them lacking in strength due to their medium roast.

In addition to notes of chocolate and caramel, there are hints of orange blossom and jasmine, which adds to its appeal.

The espresso grounds are packaged in an 8.8-ounce air-sealed tin, ensuring freshness until you open it.

One potential drawback of Illy Classico Espresso Ground Coffee is that it can go stale quickly after you open it. But this is a common issue with ground espresso in general.

Illy has a history of producing quality coffee for over three decades, with a focus on sustainability, and has been roasting beans since 1933.

If you’re in search of a decaf coffee instead, the Lifeboost Coffee Medium Roast Decaf is my recommendation.

6. Lifeboost Coffee Medium Roast – Best Decaf

lifeboost coffee medium roast decaf
Best forDrip machines, pour-over coffee
Flavor profileMellow, smooth, low acid
Available In12 oz bag
Grind sizeMedium
OriginSingle Origin – Nicaragua 
OrganicUSDA Certified Organic


  • No additives
  • Grown at high altitude- adds more richness & flavor
  • Low acid


  • Costs more than average decaf grounds
  • Too strong for some

The Lifeboost Coffee decaf medium roast ground coffee is the best decaf because it has a strong and bold flavor, making it a suitable choice for those who enjoy a robust coffee taste.

The decaf grounds from Lifeboost have a lower acidity level compared to other brands because they are grown in a high-altitude environment, which allows for increased nutrient absorption and enhanced flavor.

These decaf coffee grounds have a strong and robust taste that goes well with different coffee drinks.

It has a bold and smooth texture with low acidity, making it a good match with milk, creamers, and sweeteners without changing its flavor.

This 12 oz bag of Lifeboost Coffee decaf ground coffee includes the roast date for freshness.

The decaf grounds have a USDA-Organic Certification (by NFC) and have been tested by a third party for mycotoxins and pesticides, guaranteeing their purity and naturalness.

The Lifeboost decaf grounds have a strong taste that most people enjoy. However, those who prefer a milder option should choose a different decaf roast.

One drawback is that it is more expensive than comparable decaf grounds. However, it is grown in the high-altitude mountains of Nicaragua, which leads to improved nutrient absorption, flavor, and richness.

If you are looking for a Moka Pot coffee, you might want to consider the Lavazza Espresso Italiano Ground Coffee Blend up next.

7. Lavazza Italiano Whole Bean – Best For Moka Pot

lavazza espresso italiano ground coffee blend 2
Best forMoka pots, espresso
Flavor profileFull body with creamy &
caramel flavors
Available In1.25 lb bag, 8 oz can (4 pack)
Grind sizeFine
OriginMultiple origins– Southeast Asia, Africa, Central America, South America


  • Rich flavors
  • Made in Italy
  • Available almost everywhere


  • Too weak for some
  • Too acidic for some drinkers

Our top choice for Moka Pots is Lavazza Espresso Italiano Ground Coffee Blend, as it offers a fantastic flavor profile that is perfect for day-to-day Moka pot brewing.

This medium-roast coffee has a well-balanced flavor with floral and fruity notes. It has a low acidity level compared to other medium roasts and is not overly robust or bitter.

Lavazza uses 100% Arabica beans for its coffee that it sources from various regions, including Southeast Asia, Africa, Central America, and South America.

Due to its multi-origin nature, it has a wide range of tasting notes that are thoughtfully blended to enhance your coffee experience.

Lavazza Espresso Italiano grounds are best for those who want a versatile medium roast for regular coffee and various espresso-based drinks, such as Americanos, Lattes, and Cappuccinos.

The Lavazza Espresso Italiano grounds, being a medium roast, may not provide enough strength for some Moka Pot and Moka Express owners.

Those who want a more intense experience should try a dark roast.

This ground coffee is available in different sizes– a 1.25 lb bag and an 8 oz 4-pack. You can buy it on Amazon, other online retailers, and local grocery stores.

These espresso grounds are packaged in sealed bags or cans to ensure freshness.

If you’re looking for the best medium roast in the UK, the Lavazza, Qualità Rossa, Ground Coffee is the top choice. 

8. Lavazza, Qualità Rossa – Best in UK

lavazza qualita rossa ground coffee
Best forDrip coffee, pour-over
Flavor profileChocolate and dried fruits
Available In250 g bag, 2-pack 250 g bags,
and 12-pack 250 g bags
Grind sizeFine
OriginMulti-origin, Central and
South America


  • Aromatic chocolate and dried fruit notes
  • Moderate intensity
  • Longer shelf-life (vacuumed-sealed)


  • Tastes to bland to some

The Lavazza, Qualità Rossa ground coffee is a popular medium roast among UK coffee drinkers.

This coffee is a blend of Robusta and Arabica beans with a “5/10” intensity. It is not too strong or weak, making it suitable for both black coffee and with milk or creamer.

This coffee is finely ground and is suitable for Moka Pots and espresso machines. It is reasonably priced compared to other ground coffees available in the UK.

One advantage of the Lavazza Qualità Rossa ground coffee is that each 250-gram bag is vacuum-sealed, which aids in maintaining its flavor and freshness for extended periods.

You can purchase this Lavazza ground coffee in a single-pack, two-pack, or 12-pack of 250-gram bags online or at several UK grocery stores.

Several online reviewers mentioned that they received their order with an expiration date too near. However, it appears to be an isolated occurrence, as the majority of reviews are positive.

Read on for the best medium roast coffee in Australia. 

9. Grinders Smooth Crema – Best in Australia

grinders smooth crema ground coffee
Best forDrip coffee, pour-over
Flavor profileCocao, malt, and honey
Available In200 gram bag
Grind sizeMedium


  • Roasted locally in Melbourne 
  • Silky and creamy after-taste
  • Stocked in most Australian grocery stores


  • Small size (~7 oz bag)
  • Costly

The Grinders Smooth Crema ground coffee has excellent tasting notes and is roasted in Melbourne, making it the best medium roast for Australians.

This ground coffee is a medium roast with a smooth and silky texture. It has a mild sweetness and is not bitter. If you prefer a milder cup of coffee instead of a stronger one, you will enjoy this coffee.

This coffee is best suited for drip machines and pour-over brewing methods due to its medium grind size.

The Grinders Smooth Crema coffee is priced slightly higher compared to other ground coffee options in Australia. However, its taste and quality justify the price.

Grinders Coffee House imports green coffee beans from multiple sources and roasts them at their Melbourne facility to create a unique multi-origin blend.

So, this coffee is fresher than imported products.

Grinders Coffee is sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms, ensuring sustainable farming practices that benefit the environment, wildlife, and families. [1]

One disadvantage is that this bag of ground coffee is smaller than usual, containing only 7oz compared to the typical 10-12 oz bags. However, a smaller bag means you’re more likely to use it all before it becomes stale.

If you’re looking for a great organic coffee instead– check out the Volcanica Sulawesi, Celebes Kalossi below. 

10. Volcanica Sulawesi, Celebes Kalossi – Best Organic Coffee

volcanica sulawesi celebes kalossi
RoastMedium roast
Best forDrip coffee, pour-over, French press
Flavor profileMaple syrup, cherry, full-bodied
Available In16 oz bag
TypeWhole beans
OriginSingle origin, Sulawesi Island
OrganicOrganically grown


  • Complex aroma and finish
  • Cherry and maple syrup tasting notes 
  • Fair-Trade Certified & Rainforest Alliance Certified 


  • Too acidic for some

The Volcanica Sulawesi, Celebes Kalossi is the top organic coffee due to it is organically grown and has Rainforest Alliance and Fair-Trade certifications.

This coffee is a medium roast with flavors of maple syrup and cherry.

The coffee has a full-bodied flavor and intense taste, which is characteristic of Volcanica roasts. It also has a mild acidity and a pleasing spicy aroma.

The Volcanica Sulawesi Celebes Kalossi whole-bean coffee is more expensive than other options on this list.

However, its distinct flavors (due to its unique growing region) justify its higher price. Volcanica cultivates the beans only in high elevations in volcanic regions, specifically on Sulawesi Island’s volcano.

The unique flavor of this coffee is highly preferred in India and other nearby regions.

In high-altitude volcanic regions, the coffee plants absorb different minerals and nutrients, resulting in distinct flavors.

These beans are packaged in a 16-ounce bag. As recommended by Volcanica, you should transfer the coffee to an airtight, opaque container after opening.

Then store the beans at room temperature in order to maintain freshness.

There were some online reviews mentioning noticeable acidity in this coffee despite its low acid content.

However, I theorize this may be due to the use of expired coffee grounds or brewing them incorrectly. Personally, I did not experience high acidity.

The Volcanica Sulawesi, Celebes Kalossi whole bean coffee has Rainforest Alliance and Fair-Trade certifications, indicating that the coffee is sourced, farmed, and processed ethically.

Looking for a budget medium roast instead? The Amazon Fresh Colombia Whole Bean Coffee, Medium Roast coffee below is my go-to. 

11. Amazon Fresh Whole Bean Coffee – Budget Option

amazon fresh colombia whole bean coffee medium roast
Best forDrip coffee, pour-over,
French press
Flavor profileCocoa and brown sugar
Available In32 oz bag
TypeWhole Bean
OriginSingle Origin, Columbia


  • High-quality coffee beans
  • Citrus aromas
  • Cocoa and brown sugar tasting notes


  • Comes in large, 32 oz bag
  • Some customers report inconsistent roast levels

The Amazon Fresh Colombia Whole Bean Coffee is the top budget-friendly option due to its generous quantity and high-quality beans at a low cost.

It has a well-balanced flavor– tasting notes of citrus, cocoa, and brown sugar– and a smooth finish without any bitterness. The whole beans are medium-roasted, which gives them a balanced acidity.   

Amazon Fresh coffee is made from 100% high-quality Arabica beans that it imports from Colombia and roasts in the US. The company has great quality control, resulting in a consistent flavor and texture.

I recommend these Amazon Fresh whole beans to anyone seeking an affordable, well-balanced, and fresh cup of coffee.

However, it is whole-bean coffee (not pre-ground). So, you must grind it yourself to your preferred grind size.

If you are making a cold brew or using a French press, use a coarse grind. Or, if you’re making drip coffee, grind to a medium size.

Grinding the beans yourself requires more prep and cleaning time than pre-ground coffee, but it results in a fresher and better-tasting brew.

Additionally, it brings the pleasant aroma of freshly ground coffee to your home.

One potential drawback is that this coffee is only available in a 32 oz bag, which may be too much for individuals or families who don’t consume a lot of coffee.

Furthermore, there have been reports of customers encountering varying roast levels between two bags, which I haven’t experienced.

Based on the overwhelmingly positive reviews, the majority of customers haven’t either.

Looking for a coffee concentrate for cold brewing instead? The Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate Madagascar Vanilla is my recommendation. 

12. Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee – Best Coffee Concentrate

starbucks cold brew coffee concentrate madagascar vanilla
Best forCold brew 
Flavor profileMadagascar Vanilla
Available In32 oz bottles (2-pack)
TypeCoffee concentrate
OriginMultiple origins


  • Convenient
  • Smooth texture and great taste
  • Long shelf-life


  • Expensive compared to brewing yourself

The Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate Madagascar Vanilla is the best coffee concentrate because it lets you make cold brew in less than a minute and tastes great. 

As its name states, it is a coffee concentrate. Just fill a glass with ice, add 4 oz of water and 4 oz of this coffee concentrate. Then stir and enjoy. 

Its as simple as that. Compared to brewing cold brew overnight, it takes much less time. 

Besides making coffee drinks, you can also use this coffee concentrate in baked desserts and ice cream. 

While it is convenient, this Starbucks Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate is more expensive than buying grounds and brewing them yourself

So, it is not the most budget-friendly. 

However, it does have a long shelf-life, meaning you’ll have plenty of time to drink it before it expires. 

Looking for a ready-to-drink coffee to save even more time? The Java House Cold Brew Coffee On Tap is a great choice. 

13. Java House Cold Brew Coffee – Best Read-to-Drink 

java house cold brew coffee on tap
Best forCold brew (ready-to-drink)
Flavor profileChocolate and caramel
Available In128 oz box
TypeReady-to-drink cold brew
OriginMultiple origin


  • Zero prep time 
  • Low acidity
  • Zero preservatives and no sugar


  • Large container may be too much for individuals

The Java House Cold Brew Coffee On Tap is the best ready-to-drink coffee because it is cost-effective, has a great, full-bodied flavor, and comes in a convenient package. 

This Java House cold brew comes in a 128 oz box with an integrated spout. Just load it into your fridge and fill your cup with it as you please. 

This ready-to-drink coffee is best for people who are constantly on the go and don’t have much downtime for brewing. 

That said, it is not the most cost-effective coffee option. But compared to other ready-to-drink coffees, it is less expensive than average. 

The Java House Cold Brew Coffee On Tap has balanced tasting notes of caramel and chocolate, which goes down smoothly with or without cream and sugar. 

If you want a quick, hot coffee instead, the Starbucks VIA Instant Coffee is the best choice. 

14. Starbucks VIA Instant Coffee – Best Instant Coffee

starbucks via instant coffee—medium roast coffee
Best forInstant coffee
Flavor profileCocao and toasted nuts
Available In1 box of 50 single-serve packets
TypeInstant coffee


  • Tastes very close to ground Pike Place coffee
  • Convenient, single-serve packets


  • Pricier than other instant coffees

The Starbucks VIA Instant Coffee—Medium Roast Coffee—Pike Place Roast is the best instant coffee because it tastes almost identical to Starbucks flagship coffee. 

This is an instant coffee that comes in single-serve packets. It is quick and convenient, just tear open the packet and add it to the 8 oz of hot water, then stir. 

It is best for people who don’t want to deal with the preparation and cleanup involved with traditional brewing methods (using grounds or whole beans). 

Compared to other instant coffees, this Starbucks coffee costs more than average. But you’re paying for the brand and familiar taste. 

I wouldn’t say it tastes just like the Pike Place coffee you order from your local Starbucks, but it is close enough, given the convenience. 

Medium Roast Coffee Buying Guide

Here is what you need to consider before you buy a medium roast coffee. For more information, see our complete coffee-buying guide.

What to ConsiderWhy it’s Important
RoastNot all medium roasts are equal. They range from medium to medium-dark roast.
Coffee TypeWhole-bean coffee has a longer shelf life compared to pre-ground coffee, but it requires grinding the beans yourself. You can also choose from instant, ready-to-drink, and coffee concentrate. 
Grind SizeThe grind size you need depends on your brewing method – French press, cold brew, drip, pour-over, espresso, Moka pot, etc.
The right type for your beverageThe species of coffee bean, level of caffeine, growing region, and other factors all contribute to the taste of your coffee.
CertificationsCertifications such as organic and Fairtrade are crucial to some.
Price/BudgetYou can find cheap to expensive medium roast coffee
Single vs. multi-originSingle-origin coffee beans typically have a more consistent flavor compared to multi-origin beans.
Packaging/roast dateA recent roast date means the coffee is fresher.


The roast level of coffee varies and includes options such as blonde, light, medium, and dark. Among medium roasts, you can have differences too

For example, a medium roast from one brand may be lighter or darker than another brand.

You can also find medium-dark roasts, which are great options for people who like some strength or are used to darker roasts.

The balanced flavors and strength of medium roasts make them a great option for brewing coffee in drip machines, pour-over brewers, French presses, and cold brews.

However, you can use medium roast for any type of coffee.

The choice of medium roast level depends on your personal preferences. Here are my recommendations for each medium roast level.

RoastFlavorBest for
Medium RoastMediumCoffee drinks (drip brewing, pour-over) and cold brew
Medium-dark roastMedium/strongFrench press, Coffee drinks (drip brewing, pour-over), cold brew, espresso

Coffee Type

When choosing a medium roast coffee, your main options are whole beans or pre-ground coffee.

Whole beans have a longer shelf life after being opened, typically up to four weeks. Additionally, grinding the beans yourself allows for fresher coffee and enhances the aroma in your home.

On the other hand, pre-ground coffee is more convenient because you can easily measure it and add it to your coffee brewer for immediate use.

Using pre-ground coffee has less cleaning but a shorter shelf life compared to grinding your own beans.

Instant coffee is a cost-effective option as it only requires adding it to hot water, stirring, and drinking. However, its taste and lower quality often leave one desiring a higher-quality alternative.

Coffee concentrate is an affordable and convenient option too. Simply add equal parts hot or cold water and concentrate, then mix.

Lastly, ready-to-drink coffee, which is bottled coffee, tends to be more expensive compared to other types of coffee due to its costly and time-consuming manufacturing process.

However, it requires no additional preparation time other than simply opening the bottle.

Coffee TypeBenefitDrawback
Whole beansFreshest possible coffeeMore prep and cleaning time
GroundsLess cleanup, cheaperGoes stale faster
InstantFast prep time, affordableLacks in tastes and flavor
ConcentrateEasy preparationShort shelf life, expensive
Ready-to-drinkZero prep timeExpensive

Grind Size

The grind size of your medium roast coffee affects the brewing process by impacting the speed and effectiveness of the coffee grounds and hot water mixing.

This affects how much flavor and strength make it into your cup of joe. 

Various brewing methods require different grind sizes. For instance, French presses need coarse grinds, drip brewers need medium grinds, and espresso machines need fine grinds.

Using an incorrect grind size can result in grounds getting in your coffee or potential damage to your brewer.

Learn more in our coffee grind size guide. Here is what grind size you should use for each brewing method.

Grind SizeBest for
FineEspresso machines and Moka Pots
MediumDrip machines, cold brew, and pour over
Medium-coarseDrip machines, pour over, cold brew, and French press
CoarseFrench press and cold brew


When selecting a medium roast coffee, you should consider certifications such as Organic and Fair Trade.

A USDA-certified organic coffee does not contain artificial preservatives, flavors, colorings, or other additives.

A Fair Trade certification indicates that the coffee was sustainably farmed and sourced. It means the farmers and communities involved received fair compensation, assistance, and supervision.

A Rainforest Alliance certification means no harm comes to the surrounding rainforests in the growing regions. 

For the most natural and ethical medium roast coffee, I recommend choosing a brand that holds these certifications.

Use the table below for a quick reference on the certification, and read our coffee certifications guide to learn more. 

CertificationsWhat it means
USDA OrganicCruelty and chemical free and transported safely.
FairtradeProtects the farmers who grew the coffee beans.
4C CertificationProtects the farmers who grew the coffee beans.
Rainforest Alliance CertificationEnsures no deforestation.
Smithsonian Bird FriendlyLooks after the birds living in the coffee farms.


Considering the price and quality is important when shopping for medium roast coffee.

Lower-quality coffee is usually priced at a lower rate, while higher-quality coffee is typically priced higher. Nonetheless, there are occasional chances to come across good deals.

A 12 oz bag of whole-bean medium roast coffee usually ranges in price from $8 to $25, depending on factors such as quality and brand.

TypeCost range per 6-oz cup of coffee (budget to high-quality)
Instant coffee$0.13 to $0.25
Ready-to-drink coffee$2 to $5 (per bottle)
Pre-ground coffee$0.16 to $0.32
Single-origin whole-bean coffee$0.32 to $0.54
Multi-origin whole-bean coffee$0.22 to $0.41
Specialty pour over coffee$0.29 to $0.51

Single-origin Vs. Multi-origin

It is important to consider the origin of the medium roast coffee before making a purchase.

Single-origin coffees are produced using beans sourced exclusively from a single country, region, or farm.

Single-origin coffees tend to have the most consistent flavors, unique tasting notes, and textures as they emphasize a particular coffee bean variety and the region it grew in.

Single-origin coffees often have a distinct and consistent flavor profile, making them pricier than blends from multiple regions, although occasionally, they can be more budget-friendly.

On the other hand, multi-origin coffees utilize beans sourced from multiple locations, usually two or more countries or regions, and occasionally two or more species of beans.

Because the beans can originate from various regions and species, you can have a multitude of combinations, leading to a greater variety of flavors.

However, multi-origin blends can sometimes have inconsistent flavors and unappealing tastes, making them (usually) a more affordable choice.

There is no definitive answer as to whether single or multiple-origin medium roast coffee is superior. It ultimately boils down to personal preference and the characteristics of the particular coffee in question.

Single Origin Coffee Benefits

Here are the benefits of single-origin coffee beans/grounds:

  • Consistent flavor profiles and texture
  • Robust tasting notes
  • More strength/boldness

Multi-origin Coffee Benefits

​​Here are the benefits of multi-origin/blended coffee beans/grounds:

  • Typically less expensive
  • Different combinations can make unique flavors
  • Blended tasting notes 

To read more about this, see our complete guide on single-origins and coffee blends. 

Packaging Date/Roast Date

When selecting medium roast coffee, it is important to take into account the packaging and/or roasting date.

Certain coffee brands provide a packaging date or a roast date on their packaging. Generally, the packaging date coincides with or is one day after the roast date.

To get the best flavor and quality, I advise opting for a medium roast coffee that has been freshly roasted.

When making an online purchase, it is almost impossible to check the packaging/roast date.

That said, you can reach out to the seller and ask nicely for a recently produced batch instead of one that has been stored for an extended period.

Best Brands

As you browse for medium roast coffees, look closely at some of the top brands– Lavazza, Black Rifle, Kicking Horse, Illy, and Starbucks.

Each brand offers a variety of medium roast coffees, in whole-bean, pre-ground, instant, ready-to-drink, etc., varieties that are likely to match your personal taste preferences.

Furthermore, these brands are sold in various retail outlets, including supermarkets, grocery stores, and online retailers like Amazon.

Our Verdict

These are the top 3 medium roast coffees on the market. They all taste great, are roasted perfectly, and will give you a pleasant cup of joe. 

kicking horse coffee smart ass medium roast

Kicking Horse Coffee Medium Roast: Best Overall

  • Roast: Medium
  • Best for: Drip coffee, pour-over
  • Flavor profile: Tart red currant, sugar cane, and milk chocolate
  • Available In: 10 oz bag
  • Grind size: Medium
  • Price: $$
  • Origin: Multi-origin, Africa, Central America, South America
  • Organic: USDA Organic
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Tim Lee is, as you might have guessed the founder of He is a former barista and a professional web publisher. He has now combined his knowledge and expertise in both subjects to create
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