11 Coffee Brands That Use the Highest Quality Ingredients
For so many of us, the importance of a good morning cup of coffee cannot be overstated. The morning brew provides more than simply an energy boost; it also has health benefits.
Coffee remains the most popular beverage in America—even more popular than tap water—with about 66% of U.S. adults sipping the invigorating brew each day, according to the National Coffee Association. We're talking about a total of 491 million cups daily. That's a lot of coffee!
While caffeine consumption habits are always evolving, there are a few manufacturers, roasters, and brands that always use the highest quality ingredients. Here, we've highlighted the best of the best coffee brands that will deliciously fuel your morning routine.
Stumptown Coffee Roasters
Self-described pioneers in direct-trade sourcing, the popular Portland-based Stumptown Coffee Roasters has been buying directly from producers since 2002. Admittedly, the coffee is not cheap, because the company takes pride in paying its suppliers for top-quality beans. Stumptown also preaches transparency, publishing the names and locations of two dozen different producers across four continents on its web site. Its lineup of fine coffees includes 15 single-origin varieties and eight certified organic varieties, including its best-selling Holler Mountain. Look for Stumptown at national retailers including Target and Whole Foods or order online.
Chicago's best known specialty coffee company grades its coffees like a credit-rating agency: the more As, the better the beans. The better the beans, the more their suppliers get paid. The proof of this quality control method is in your cup. Intelligentsia is a stickler for seasonal sourcing, buying at peak harvest times and labeling its freshest beans "In Season." In 2019, over 99% of Intelligentsia coffees came from direct-trade relationships with producers from all over the world. according to the company. Intelligentsia is available online and from a wide range of retailers including Walmart and Whole Foods.
Kicking Horse Coffee
If you see Kicking Horse roasts on your store shelves, scoop up those bags—this brew is mighty and committed to serving up excellent coffee. Since 2003, this Canadian coffee company buys, roasts, brews, and sells only 100% organic coffee beans. Acquired by Lavazza in 2017, Kicking Horse Coffee was named Canada's #1 selling Organic Fairtrade coffee brand 13 years in a row. You can find Kicking Horse online and at supermarkets including Harris Teeter and Giant.
Death Wish Coffee
The so-called "World's Strongest Coffee" has picked up plenty of fans since launching in 2012, and even fueled the astronauts at the International Space Station. Using a unique combination of beans paired with a specially designed roasting process, the makers of Death Wish Coffee have created a punchy blend that is extremely caffeinated thanks to both arabica and robusta beans sourced mainly from India and Peru. Get Death Wish online or find it at Walmart and other national retailers.
Caribou Coffee began as a small roastery and shop in Minnesota, but these days the company's cafes and bagged beans can be found almost anywhere. In 2017, the brand set a clean label standard for its U.S. stores, meaning the company will not add artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, artificial preservatives, MSG, or high-fructose corn syrup to its beverages. Caribou operates cafes in 19 states. Its coffees are also available online.
This national brand hand-roasts 100% of their organic coffees "in the nation's first LEED Gold Certified roasting facility." Peet's sources from farms around the world and is third-party verified by Enveritas, a nonprofit that conducts independent assessments on sustainability issues in the supply chain. Find Peet's online or at national retailers including Costco, Target and Walmart.
Blue Bottle Coffee
Established in Oakland, California, in 2002, Blue Bottle Coffee has made it its mission to work closely with growers all over the world to discover the most delectable and sustainable coffees and serve them when they are at their freshest. The brand has worked to shorten the supply chain, so you're drinking straight from the (sustainable) source, which means a fresher, richer flavor. Look for Blue Bottle online or from retailers including Target, Walmart and Whole Foods.
Claiming to be the healthiest coffee on the planet, Lifeboost promises that every pour is mold- and chemical-free, non-GMO, shade-grown, fairly traded, and single origin. Even more impressive? The single-origin roasts are smooth, easy on the stomach, and certified organic. Look for Lifeboost online and at national retailers including Target, Walmart and Whole Foods.
Partners Coffee Roasters
This relatively new brand (founded in 2012), touts that its beans are sourced sustainably from farmers around the world, and roasted at its headquarters in Brooklyn. All of its beans are single origin, from coffee farms in Brazil, Ethiopia, Colombia, Rwanda, and more. Partners operates five cafes in NYC. You can also order online.
If you know, you know. One of the pricier cups of coffee on the market, Bulletproof is one of the best organic ground coffees. It's clean, tested for toxins, and rainforest certified, with sustainably washed beans grown on high-altitude estates in Guatemala and Colombia. You can pair it with ghee from grass-fed cows and octane oil for the brand's coffee system, or just enjoy a regular cup of good coffee. Buy Bulletproof online or from retailers including Walmart and Whole Foods.
If you love espresso, you know Italy's best-selling coffee, Lavazza. The Classico is a coveted roast, but the Gran Selezione is perhaps the brand's best roast, with chocolate-forward accents that make it worth savoring. Lavazza sources its beans from around the globe and offers single origin and blends for almost every palate. Look for Lavazza online and at retailers including Costco, Sam's Club, Target and Walmart.
A version of this story was originally published in July 2022. It has been updated to include new information.