This is a common question for beginner homebrewers. While Turkish coffee also creates espresso with a fine grind, it’s not the same grind required for espresso machines.
Can You Use Turkish Coffee in an Espresso Machine?
Don’t have time for the full article? Here’s a quick answer to your question:
You can use Turkish coffee for an espresso machine, but it won’t taste good. Turkish coffee grounds are actually finer than espresso coffee grounds, resulting in a flavor that won’t quite taste right when put into your portafilter. Overly fine coffee grounds in an espresso machine will be overexracted: this is another way of saying they’ll taste sour or tight.
You should make Turkish coffee in a proper pot to get the foam and the flavor you're looking for.
Back to espresso - You’ll notice the opposite effect if you use very coarse grounds, which results in espresso shots that taste extremely bland.
Let’s take a look at other common questions about Turkish coffee and how you can enjoy it properly.
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How Much Stronger Is Turkish Coffee Than Espresso?
Turkish coffee is beloved in many countries for its bold approach: not only does it have a uniquely rich flavor, it’s much higher in caffeine.
Does that make it the strongest brew around? Not quite. Turkish coffee still doesn’t have as much caffeine as espresso. Measuring per ounce, espresso has a higher caffeine count by 15 to 20 mg.
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What Kind of Coffee Goes Into an Espresso Machine?
Whether you like a bold flat white or a creamy cappuccino, you need to get your espresso shots right. Your espresso machine doesn’t use the same approach as your coffee maker, after all.
Your espresso machine uses steam, pressure, and a high temperature to push flavor chemicals out of a fine coffee grind. This results in the creamy, oily espresso shot you know and love. When creating your espresso, all you technically need is finely ground coffee that appears like flour.
When it comes to origin, coffee bean variety, or roast level, you can use any type you want. Dark roasted coffee is often favored for espresso due to its bold and bitter flavors. Roasting coffee dark also makes the grounds more durable to high-pressure brewing, making this a win-win. This blend of flavors creates a delightful contrast with steamed milk, chocolate, or syrup.
When searching for coffee to brew, consider purchasing beans labeled ‘espresso roast’.
Can You Use Starbucks Ground Coffee in an Espresso Machine?
If you’re a fan of Starbucks, you might be tempted to turn your kitchen into a mini-cafe. While you can technically use Starbucks ground coffee in an espresso machine, it’s not recommended.
Starbucks ground coffee is usually designed for your coffeemaker or your pour over: this is a medium-coarse grind that appears to have a soft, sandy texture.
Is Espresso Healthier Than Coffee?
The answer to this question is a big, resounding maybe. Coffee is regularly seeing new studies published about its health benefits, whether related to its caffeine content or its antioxidant count.
Espresso, in some ways, is healthier than a mug of drip coffee. Due to lacking a paper or cloth filter, an espresso shot will receive a higher concentration of the antioxidants and minerals. The health benefits of antioxidants are still being studied, but a high presence in your diet will reduce your risk of severe diseases like heart disease or diabetes.
Does that mean you’re good to go with a few extra espresso shots in the morning? Not so fast. Coffee filters might soak up a few of the good stuff, but they also reduce some of the downsides of coffee consumption. The higher caffeine count in espresso can result in some unpleasant side-effects when consumed too often, such as heart palpitations, nausea, and difficulties sleeping.
Since Turkish coffee is often served with a little sugar, that’s an added level of strain on your body you should leave for special occasions.
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Curious about Turkish coffee? Thinking of trying a new grind in your espresso machine? Experimentation is part of the coffee brewing process and a habit you’ll embrace in no time.
Send us a message or reach out to our live chat with all your coffee brewing questions. We’ll help you pick out an espresso machine, grinder, or coffee accessories for the new year.