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The 10 Best Instant Coffee brands According to the People

You’ll find instant coffee brands that are super bitter and brands that have a silky smooth flavor. Here are some of the more popular ones.

Here at The Coffee Chronicler, we’d love to test and try every single coffee gadget out there, but the fact is that there is only so much time available every day. 

For that reason, we have turned to the “wisdom of the crowds” for this article and handpicked the highest rated products from Amazon. We have looked at pros and cons from individual reviews, as well as the total rating to present the most accurate advice.

Instant coffee is often ridiculed among hardcore coffee snobs.

While it’s not amazing, it’s still better than its reputation.

Personally, I think it’s more drinkable than the alternative:

 Stale coffee from a drip machine that hasn’t been cleaned in decades. 

Quick overview: 5 top picks

One of the best things I can say about instant coffee, however, is that it’s almost impossible to f… up.

While that might not sound overly positive, it actually is a form of praise.

Coffee is a complex beverage that requires much from the user in terms of skills and equipment. Taking those things out of the equation, means that it’s very easy to get a decent cup.

So even though it might not be something for hardcore coffee snobs, we all have to admit that there is a time and place for instant coffee.

We have been digging around on Amazon to see which instant coffee brands most customers rave about. Here are some the best instant coffee packets on the market today.

Pro Tip: If you want to see what’s really the best coffee in the world then be sure to check this out.

Top 10 Best Instant Coffee brands in 2020

1. Nescafe Taster’s Choice House Blend Instant Coffee

Taster's Choice Nescafe House...

A list of the best instant coffee cannot be complete without Nescafe in the mix. The Taster Choice House Blend is an instant coffee that culminates 80 years of freeze dried coffee development. The mild roasted Arabica beans give you a smooth and crowd-pleasing taste.

A customer from Florida reviewed the coffee as a blessing in times of hurricanes. It helped him get through the tough days when he needed a coffee fix without power. Mix it in hot or cold water, the coffee dissolves properly and stays fresh in its container for months. 

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2. Starbucks Decaf Italian Roast Instant Coffee

Starbucks VIA Ready Brew...

If you’re in  search of the best instant decaf coffee, Starbucks Ready Brew Decaf is an Italian roast worth checking out. 100% Arabica beans create the foundation of this tantalizing beverage. It more or less tastes the same as a regular coffee, but without the jittery side-effects.

A reviewer who was sad about switching to decaf coffee found that this was a much better replacement than brewed decaf coffee. The fact that it’s not easily available at supermarkets and it has a high price bothers customers, but instant decaf coffee doesn’t get better than this.

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3. Mount Hagen Organic Fairtrade Instant Coffee

Mount Hagen Organic Fair Trade...

If you’re looking for ethically-sourced instant coffee that will give you that morning dose of caffeine, Mount Hagen has to be one of the best coffee brands to meet your needs. Its freeze-dried Fairtrade-sourced coffee has a silky smooth and rich flavor.

A customer who wanted to make the switch to instant coffee for the time it saves found this to be the perfect substitute. Ethically sourced, it gives you the premium coffee experience of the Mount Hagen whether you’re drinking it black or with creamer.

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4. Folgers Classic best Instant Coffee packets

Folgers Classic Roast Instant...

One of the oldest home-grown coffee brands, Folgers made possibly the best instant espresso product with the Classic Roast. The classic rich and strong flavor is quite popular to this day with its subtle bitter undertones.

A customer review talked about how this might not be the premium gourmet coffee. However, this coffee does what it intends to do perfectly well. You can use it for different culinary purposes as well. The coffee has a consistent taste and quality – all that matters to most at the end of the day.

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5. Jacob’s Kronung Instant Coffee

Jacobs Kronung Instant Coffee...

If you don’t mind spending a bit more on instant coffee to get a more high-quality experience, Jacob’s Kronung Instant Coffee might be as good as it can get. This product from Germany’s premier coffee brand has a superior taste and a decent punch in its flavor.

A happy customer was delighted at the taste of this coffee. It is not as strong or bitter as most other brands. The Kronung works perfectly for most as a morning coffee as well as a booster in the middle of the day.

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6. Trung Nguyen G7 Instant Coffee

Trung Nguyen - G7 3 In 1...

One of the more unique entries on the list of the best instant coffee in 2020, the G7 is Vietnamese coffee made using a patented dry roast process. No pre-brewing, freeze-drying, or concentrating coffee. It comes in small packets, making it one of the best instant coffees to carry aroun. Getting coffee is simply a matter of adding hot water and creamer.

A customer who was struggling to find the right instant coffee found the G7 to be ideal, even though the distinct initial aroma is a little off-putting. Overall, the coffee does its job well.

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7. Café Altura Organic Instant espresso

Cafe Altura Freeze Dried...

Health and environmentally conscious coffee drinkers who need their caffeine kick without feeling guilty might love Café Altura’s Organic Instant Coffee. Café Altura’s Organic Instant Coffee is made from freeze-dried Arabica coffee beans, which are grown by Fairtrade certified farmers. It has a rich and smooth flavor.

A self-proclaimed coffee snob customer reviewed this as one of the best instant coffee he’s had and he’s been drinking instant coffee for years (maybe he’s not really a coffee snob afterall?) Its GMO-free and organic status gives it some extra bonus points.

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8. Maxwell House Original Blend

Maxwell House Original Roast...

Another classic American instant coffee brand, Maxwell House, is doing a good job with the Original Blend. The brand has maintained its rich medium roast flavor.

A customer used to drink more expensive instant coffee products tried this out and found it just as good as any “premium quality” brands. He found it better than most other instant coffee brands he has tried and this turned out to be an excellent substitute to brewed coffee.

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9. Douwe Egberts Pure Gold

Douwe Egberts Pure Gold...

Douwe Egberts is one of the oldest names among coffee makers. With 250 years of being in the business, you should think that the company knows what they’re doing. The Pure Gold has a smooth and slightly nutty coffee flavor, according to reviewers.

A customer who spent his entire life drinking instant coffee describes this as four times better than any other instant coffee. The taste isn’t overbearing. It has a simple and mellow flavor that is smoother and gives you the right dose of caffeine in the morning.

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10. Four Sigmatic Mushroom Coffee

Mushroom Coffee by Four...

As the name suggests, Four Sigmatic’s Mushroom coffee is much more than a regular ‘Joe.’ Four Sigmatic’s coffee and mushroom combination of 100% organic Arabica coffee beans with chaga and lion’s mane mushroom powder makes an instant coffee with so-called nootropic benefits.

Tim Ferris himself has mentioned that this coffee boosts concentration and creativity. A customer found the taste a little earthy, but the taste of coffee’s there. However, the focus boosting effects of the coffee lasted for several hours for the customer. 

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What to look for?

Choosing among the best instant coffee brands takes some due consideration on your part. As you can see, each of our top picks is slightly different than the other. Here are some aspects you should factor in when you’re deciding on the one that suits your needs the best.

Beans

Robusta or Arabica coffee beans make all instant coffees. Arabica has a recognizable smoother taste with more layers and it is slightly sweeter. Most people usually go for the Arabica bean-based instant coffee for its overall superior quality.

Roast

The roast of the coffee can be light, medium, or dark roasted. The more roasted it is, the more intense the flavor. The instant coffee’s packaging displays its roast so you can choose the intensity more fitting for your taste. If you’re trying to make the best instant espresso, you should go for a darker roast packet.

Convenience

Instant coffee is supposed to be convenient to make and drink. The container your favorite coffee comes in has to make it easier for you to make your morning cup of coffee with as little hassle as possible.

Final Thoughts

While instant coffee will probably never reach the same level of deliciousness as manual brewed coffee, there are still many interesting options on the market today. If you’re too busy (or lazy) to go for a regular brew, one of the options in our guide might make your morning a tiny bit more comfortable.

Top Featured Image: Marcos.sa – Flickr CC 2.0

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about the author

about the author

Hey, I'm Asser Christensen from Denmark – the founder & editor of this site.

I have been crazy about caffeine for almost as long as I can remember. Today, I'm a licensed Q Arabica Grader and full time coffee writer.

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