Can You Make Espresso With Regular Coffee?

By Shabbir
Last update:

Those who do not know a lot about coffee sometimes ask: “Can you make espresso with regular coffee?”. Indeed, espresso is made with standard coffee beans.

It is only the brewing method that is different. Of course, there are other vital things you need to know about espresso. So, to ensure you have the right information, be sure to read through our comprehensive espresso guide below.

can you use regular coffee for espresso?

Answering “Can you make espresso with regular coffee?”

As we briefly mentioned already, the only difference between espresso and regular coffee is the way it is made. There is no such as thing as dedicated espresso beans, even though some suppliers of coffee beans can label some of their releases as espresso beans.

Do not be caught by the espresso beans trap, as regular coffee beans can create a brilliant espresso. The best kind of beans for espresso tend to be medium to dark roasts.

Of course, the brewing method is the biggest difference between an espresso and a coffee. To make an espresso grind, obtain a fine grind of your coffee beans. Then you can use the ground coffee for the espresso brewing process.

To maximise your chances of a good espresso, it is best to obtain a nice espresso machine. Even though most espresso machines can be an investment, there are some affordable options out there.

What is the best coffee for espresso?

Some hot water and the right selection of coffee beans can make all the difference for an espresso. If you are looking to create an espresso roast for the ultimate taste experience, then we do have some recommendations for you.

When you make an espresso, we recommend choosing some of the darker coffee beans. Contrary to a regular cup of brewed coffee, espresso is richer in nature. So, creating some ground coffee from darker coffee beans should provide you with the better taste.

While darker coffee beans are recommended for your espresso ground coffee, we do need to mention that some people will make espresso from lighter beans. Starbucks actually has a version that is brewed with lighter beans. So, you do not always have to choose one over the other.

Even though darker coffee beans are best for a cup of espresso, it does not mean you have to choose the darkest ones available. There are various gradations of darker coffee beans that are all brilliant for a cup of espresso.

When you want the best taste for your cup of espresso, we recommend getting fresh coffee beans. Coffee beans that were roasted two weeks before brewing tend to be the better option.

In general, there are two types of coffee bean that are used to brew a great cup. Let’s take a look at each one, so you can determine your favorite for your next espresso.


The Robusta is obtained from the Coffea canephora plant. Approximately 30% of the world’s coffee bean production falls under the category of Robusta. It is considered as the second most popular bean in the world.

Naturally, the Robusta has a lot of typical characteristics that can be desirable for espresso making. The bean has a relatively harsh and deep flavor, complemented by a higher caffeine content.

In addition to the espresso, the Robusta is a coffee bean that is often used for instant coffees. So, if you like the taste of the more refined instant coffees, then this bean could be the ideal choice for your espresso.


Even though the Robusta is popular among many coffee lovers, the Arabica is favored by most. It is harvested from the Coffea Arabica plant and is characterised by a more nuanced flavor.

Arabica beans tend to be a little sweeter compared to the Robusta, which can be great for those who do not like flavors that are too harsh. Most specialist coffee shops will also stock a large variety of Arabica beans for coffee lovers; this due to their popularity for different blends.

As you may have guessed, the Arabica is the most popular coffee bean in the world. While you may have trouble seeing the difference with the Robusta, you will notice the difference easily where taste is concerned.

The Best Way To Brew Espresso?

Making an espresso becomes easy if you have a dedicated machine to do it. Once you have mastered the basics of temperature, brewing time, and even the grind you add to the portafilter, you can start experimenting with additional flavors to brew your espresso perfectly.

Add a little hint of honey, cinnamon, or another ingredient to get the best cup of espresso possible.

Now that you have read our full overview with top tips, you are ready to start brewing. Grab yourself your favorite selection of coffee beans, a good espresso machine, and some additional ingredients to get an amazing espresso at the end!

Of course, be sure to use our expert tips as well to ensure your espresso is as good as it can be.

Can you make espresso with a regular coffee maker?

Making an espresso with a regular coffee maker can be extremely challenging. An espresso machine puts a huge amount of force on the brewing process, giving a more concentrated coffee and crema on top.

Drip coffee goes through a lot slower, so using a normal coffee maker is not recommended for espresso. That being said, you could still get your espresso roast by making some minor modifications.

To get an espresso from a regular coffee maker, you need to reduce the amount of water you use. Ideally, you want to use two ounces of water for every 15 grams of ground coffee. One of these is one shot of espresso. Of course, you can start to experiment with the amounts you use to get the espresso coffee you like most.

Of course, you also need to adjust the grind to get a decent espresso. Contrary to a regular coffee, the grind for an espresso is very fine. When you use an espresso machine, you normally need the finest grind possible.

However, if you are working with a regular coffee maker, you will need to find the golden middle.

To make an espresso with a regular coffee maker, you will need a grind that is medium-fine. In other words, it will still be coarser than the grind you would use in an espresso machine.

You don’t want to be using the finest grind possible, because that will take longer and could make the espresso taste remarkably bitter.

Finally, you need to make sure the timing is right as well. Since you are not using an espresso machine, you must make sure that your espresso roast goes through faster than a regular coffee. You can do this by adding a smaller amount of water.

Coffee Brewster is completely reader supported. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no extra cost to you. We appreciate your support!
About Shabbir

Shab is the Chief Caffeine Officer at Coffee Brewster. When he's not weighing out coffee beans for his next brew, you can find him writing about his passion: coffee.