How to Roast Coffee at Home, getting started

Roasting Coffee at Home, Getting Started.

This Helpful post Answers many FAQ about Home Coffee Roasting

Roasting coffee at home is as easy as popping corn on the stove or on a burner of your gas grill or even over a camp fire. Green Coffee is simply what we call RAW coffee beans, the seeds of the fruit that appear green in color, and will hold their flavor until roasted.

Arabica coffee grown for the Specialty Coffee Market (Green coffee for home roasting and used in coffee shops) is the top 2% to 3% of all coffee Grown; Processed and selected for its' distinct Flavor.

Don't be afraid to give it a try, High quality Green coffee beans are available for under $6 per Lb. With just a couple roasts you'll find the right level of heat to apply that brings your beans to first Crack in about 4 to 7 minutes, just stir, watch, and listen.

You can start roasting coffee with items you already have around the house. Roast in a skillet stirring with a wood spoon, in a pot shaking to prevent scorching, or a hot air popcorn popper. Or try a Whirley Pop popcorn popper very reasonably priced under $50 in our Home Coffee Roaster Beginners Kit  with 5Lbs Gourmet Green Coffee, storage pouches, and directions. 


Handy Home Coffee Roasting items.



Home Coffee Roaster Beginners Kit



Roasting coffee with a moderate budget you can start with a nearly automatic coffee roasting appliance. The FreshRoast SR300 coffee Roaster at less than $130 or the NESCO Pro coffee Roaster for under $190 including shipping and Gourmet Coffee to get started are both easy to use and produce excellent fresh roasted coffee.

FreshRoast SR300 Coffee Roaster



NESCO Pro Coffee Roaster



Home Coffee Roasting for Beginners Simple instructions

You can use a skillet and wood spoon or any container that you can put on a stove or shake over a fire without spilling the beans.

These instructions are intended for a Whirley Pop but work for manual roasting over a fire.

You will need : 8 ounces of Green coffee beans, a half pound keeps the beans moving when stirred; Colander or roasting pan to cool beans in; Stand up pouch or large zip bag to store coffee; Hot pad; Pen and paper; watch with seconds.

Handy items:

Scale, measuring cup, funnel, small fan, wooden long handle spoon, Infrared Thermometer, candy thermometer (metal). Our Roast Levels sheet showing roast levels by color and description, and our HRC Roast Log both free downloads available on our LEARNpages.

With Green coffee beans in Whirley POP set stove just over medium heat, start timer. Begin stirring at a medium pace and move fast a few seconds of every minute, while regularly checking your beans for color, sound, and if you like temperature. You will want to use the vent fan on your stove or have an open window as coffee beans will produce smoke especially at dark roast levels. 

Whirley Pop on stove with Green coffee ready to roast, timer, HRC Roast Log and Levels sheets.


As beans reach about 375 degrees F (4 to 6 minutes in) they begin to make a sound similar to pencils breaking known as FIRST CRACK. From this point on, your coffee can be removed from the heat and later brewed, however once removed from the heat it will not continue to roast if returned to the heat. First Crack should last a minute or two with beans going from light to medium brown ending around 410 degrees F and producing a nice American roast. Simply watch, listen, and record the relevant data at the point you remove your beans from the roaster into a colander or roasting pan. Gently stir or shake the beans over a fan outside or over a sink to cool to room temperature and remove the remaining chaff from the beans. Pour beans into an air tight bag to rest at least 4 hours before brewing. Or, continue turning, watching, and listening for a darker roast.


Coffee near end of first Crack can be removed from heat for American roast.


The pace of the roast and smoke will increase while the sounds slow for a few seconds to a minute and the bean temperature rises to about 435 degrees F. The beans continue roasting quickly to Dark brown (Full city roast) as SECOND CRACK begins. Second Crack sounds like crispy rice cereal, lasts seconds to a few a minutes, bean temperatures rise rapidly, beans become almost black and shiny (450d F), watch close to stop before burnt. Download our helpful color comparison roast levels for descriptions of taste profiles.

Pouring hot beans into a roasting pan to cool and remove chaff over a small fan.


Using a funnel to pour cool beans into a stand up pouch to "Rest" a few hours.



Freshroasted coffee, store out of sunlight or extreme temps. Yum!  


This entire process took less than 10 minutes, a small price to pay for the amazing aroma and taste of fresh coffee in the next day or two. If you love coffee you have got to try this.

Watch our Video Roasting with a Whirley Pop click here.


Scott Brill  Owner: