As busy editors, the most important part of our day is our sacred morning coffee. We're firm believers that caffeine comes first! Before we tackle our morning meetings, grocery shopping, or errands, a cup of coffee — specifically, a large, strong, damn good cup of coffee — is always in order.

Best Coffee Brands

    How We Chose

    For our search through the sea of delicious coffees available for purchase online, we stuck to mostly whole-bean coffee blends (and one or two ground options) to narrow down the playing field, since we find buying whole beans to be most economical for the average consumer. Whether you use a classic drip coffee machine, a stovetop espresso pot, or a pour-over coffee maker at home, these coffee bean brands will make sure you start your morning off on the right foot.

    From tried-and-true household names to a brand that claims to make the world's absolute strongest brew, here are the most delicious, versatile, and top-rated coffee brands to cultivate your caffeine buzz.

    Best Everyday Coffee

    La Colombe Corsica Blend

    You might be familiar with one of La Colombe's brick-and-mortar cafés across the country — or even their canned Draft Latte line — but we bet you didn’t realize that you can purchase their full line of coffee beans online. What started as a flagship café and bakery in Philadelphia is now an award-winning nationwide coffee brand, and we think La Colombe's Corsica Blend is the best expression of the brand's deliciousness. This blend is made from a mix of beans ethically sourced from Brazil, Colombia, Honduras, and Mexico, and it's named after the ancient Mediterranean island.

    The Corsica blend has deep, dark, chocolatey notes and a robust flavor, making it a bold roast that many love to drink first thing in the morning. Many reviewers specifically note that this is their “go-to morning blend” since it’s both strong and versatile. The cocoa notes in this blend make it pair especially nicely with milk or cream, although it can certainly stand alone and be sipped black. With consistently positive reviews, a bold yet balanced flavor, and a smooth chocolatey finish that will leave you wanting another sip, La Colombe’s Corsica blend gets our vote for best everyday coffee.

    Best Flavor

    Stumptown Coffee Roasters Hair Bender Whole Bean Coffee, 12 oz
    Stumptown Coffee Roasters

    A coffee that blooms beautifully as it steeps, this Hair Bender blend from Portland cult-favorite brand Stumptown has an impressive depth of flavor and is wild, rich, and smooth. A blend of coffee from Indonesia, Latin America, and Africa, Hair Bender gets its name from the shuttered beauty parlor that formerly housed the brand's first location.

    With notes of citrus and dark chocolate, this is the brand's most popular, best-selling blend, and we think it's the best-tasting coffee on this list.

    Best Dark Roast

    Death Wish Coffee Co. Whole Bean Coffee
    Death Wish Coffee Co.

    Death Wish Coffee — an upstate New York-based brand that claims to make the world’s strongest coffee — makes one mean, dark-roast whole-bean coffee (their signature blend).

    Using sustainably sourced, perfectly roasted coffee beans to produce a bold, highly caffeinated coffee blend, Death Wish's signature coffee has double the caffeine of your average cup of java, without being too acidic or harsh. We think they nailed it!

    Made with a blend of ethically sourced beans, Death Wish Coffee is both fair-trade and USDA-certified organic. Described as a “high-octane” coffee with a high caffeine concentration, the brand swears this coffee will “bring you back from the nights you thought you’d never wake up from,” and reviewers seem to unanimously agree.

    Beyond being incredibly potent and highly caffeinated, this dark roast is well-balanced and flavorful, with sweet, nutty, chocolatey notes and a surprisingly smooth finish. We feel a disclaimer is in order here: This is not a blend for those who are sensitive to caffeine, but if you’re on the hunt for a dark roast that will wake you up, look no further.

    Best Medium-Roast Coffee

    Peet's Big Bang Medium Roast

    Many attribute Alfred Peet and his small coffee shop established in Berkeley, California in 1966 as the beginning of the craft-coffee movement in the United States. Peet’s Big Bang was introduced in 2016 as a special blend to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the coffee shop, but it has since garnered quite a loyal following and has become one of the brand's most popular varieties.

    This blend is crafted from fair-trade, USDA-certified organic Latin American and East African beans and gets a bright, fruity lift from Ethiopian Super Natural coffee beans that are added to the mix. Many reviewers call out lush, sweet, citrusy notes in this blend’s flavor and aroma.

    Best Mild Roast

    Lavazza Super Crema Coffee Blend

    Beloved and best-selling Italian brand Lavazza gets our vote for Best Mild Roast, thanks to their velvety Super Crema Espresso blend.

    A mix of Arabica beans from Brazil and Colombia, and India and robusta beans from Indonesia and Vietnam, this blend is mild, creamy, and medium- to light-bodied. According to the brand's 2016 Sustainability Report, the beans that Lavazza uses are all ethically sourced, USDA-certified organic, and Rainforest Alliance-certified.

    Many reviewers pick up notes of honey, almonds, and dried fruit in the flavor profile with zero bitterness and low acidity. Ideally, this blend would be finely ground, brewed as a traditional espresso, and served in a smaller format, but many reviewers coarse-grind this blend and brew it using their drip coffee maker or French press with great success. Most reviewers actually claim that they've switched to Lavazza for their everyday morning coffee from other more well-known American brands.

    Whether you’re brewing espresso or traditional drip coffee, Lavazza’s Super Crema makes for a versatile, mild, and velvety-smooth roast.

    A Dope Black-Owned Coffee Brand

    Dope Coffee Organic Guatemalan Coffee Beans
    Dope Coffee

    Atlanta-based, Black-owned coffee brand Dope Coffee is on a mission to show the world that premium coffee and Black culture go hand in hand.

    Dope Coffee sells four varieties of these ground coffee blends, as well as some K-Cup varieties, too. Headed by CEO Michael Lloyd (a former U.S. Marine), this brand makes delicious organic coffee for everyone. These organic Guatemalan whole beans have notes of apricot and dark chocolate. A great everyday medium-roast coffee pick, we'd be remiss if we didn't include Dope Coffee on our list.

    Best Coffee With a Cause

    Grounds & Hounds Three Blend Starter Kit

    We love coffee brands that give back, and especially ones that care deeply about animals. Enter: Grounds & Hounds, a dynamic Los Angeles-based coffee brand focused on animal rescue. With each purchase of their organic, Fair Trade-certified coffee products, Grounds & Hounds provides funding and resources for life-saving initiatives that impact rescue pups nationwide.

    This starter kit includes three bags of the brand's most popular ground blends: Morning Walk Breakfast Blend, Paper & Slippers Medium Roast, and Alpha Blend Dark Roast. There's a little something for everyone in this mix, and we think it also makes a really cute gift (these blends also come in a whole-bean variety, if that's more your style).

    A Coffee Brand That Gives Back

    Counter Culture Coffee Big Trouble Whole Bean Coffee
    Counter Culture Coffee

    We love coffee brands that have a good mission, and Durham, North Carolina-based Counter Culture is known for its commitment to coffee education and sustainability. Also noteworthy: Counter Culture recently launched a new coffee club with NPR, providing a portion of proceeds to support NPR’s programming.

    Oh, and did we mention their sustainably sourced coffee kicks serious ass? This Big Trouble whole-bean coffee has notes of caramel and is superbly rich and nutty, making it a delicious, flavorful everyday coffee.

    Best Fair-Trade Coffee

    Equal Exchange Organic Whole Bean Coffee
    Equal Exchange

    This smooth and well-balanced medium-roast blend from Equal Exchange is sustainably grown by small farming co-ops based in Latin America, Africa, and Asia. Fair Trade-certified and USDA organic-certified, Equal Exchange's Mind, Body & Soul blend is a coffee you can genuinely feel good about sipping. Plus, it's ridiculously delicious.

    Reviewers rave about the malty flavor of this blend, picking up notes of almonds and chocolate without any bitterness or unpleasant acidity.

    Read More:

    The Best Editor-Tested and Approved Coffee Grinders

    Quitting Caffeine? Try These Soothing Herbal Teas Instead

    The Best Coffee Makers Sure to Keep You Caffeinated

    Follow on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest!