What Is The Difference Between Blonde Espresso And Regular Espresso?

How’s your jitter juice? No, don’t let your espresso give you jitters. Moderation is the best policy when it comes to your cuppa. Maybe a blonde espresso or a regular espresso. It doesn’t matter. But what’s the difference between these two brain juices?

The blonde espresso gained its popularity shortly after Starbucks introduced its own product in the market, which gives higher caffeine levels than the regular espresso. The latter is a dark roast that offers a creamy, smooth and sweet flavor while the former is lighter with a stronger taste.

If you are an espresso person, this might be the high time to know the difference between the blonde espresso and the regular one. We’ve checked about your favorite drink and gathered amazing details below.

Blonde Espresso

The blonde espresso is of Latin American and East African origin where the roasting scale is at its lighter profile. This makes the beans look paler than usual. It was originally called cinnamon roast, but many people thought that it tastes more like cinnamon than espresso per se.

So to make it sound more fun and tempting, especially in marketing Starbucks’ “light roast” espresso, it started calling the coffee drink blonde espresso. It also used to be called half city, light city, and New England roast. Blonde espresso got the hearts of many coffee aficionados. To this date, it’s still a thing for coffee drinkers around the world, especially Starbucks fans.

What Makes An Espresso Blonde?

By applying heat to the green coffee beans over time, a chemical reaction takes place that gives different compounds creating an aroma in the beans. This gives them the roasting taste and profile when trigged at a temperature of 200°C to 205°C. When this happens, the water inside the beans vaporizes causing them to expand and crack at the same time, which is called the “first crack”.

As soon as the first crack happens, the roasting process is halted where the lighter coffee beans are produced. These coffee beans are now your blonde espresso in a cup, which is 10 mg higher than the regular espresso per ounce. This means that its caffeine levels are just as much as the dark roasted espresso has although the blonde espresso is natural sweetness in it.

What makes the blonde espresso taste stronger than the regular espresso is the beans used in the roasting process, which are a combination of Latin American and East African coffee beans. The shorter roasting time that it gets doesn’t really affect its caffeine levels, and it’s just as good as the darker one. Also, the blonde espresso works well with other coffee drinks such as iced coffees and Americanos.

Its natural mellow taste and natural citrus hints are what make the blonde espresso very popular among coffee aficionados around the world. And we, coffee lovers, know that Starbucks is definitely winning on the blonde espresso as its signature blend. Who doesn’t love the coffee giant’s blonde espresso roast though? Don’t lie!

Regular Espresso

The regular espresso, on the other hand, is darker in color and contains caffeine as much as the blonde espresso. The coffee beans used to make the original espresso are of Latin America and the Pacific region origins. These have a stronger taste and the natural sweetness during the roasting process is becoming more of a caramelized compound resulting in hints of caramel flavor.

With its amazing caramel hints, the regular espresso makes a great base for different coffee beverages that are extremely popular among coffee aficionados. Coffee drinks such as mocha, frappuccino, ristretto, and more are famous with an espresso base. Just like the blonde espresso, the original regular espresso is also the go-to drink for coffee drinkers worldwide.

How Is The Regular Espresso Processed?

Also called dark roast, the regular espresso is processed longer than the blonde espresso. After the first crack, the roasting process moves forward to more intense profiling of the coffee beans. The second crack takes place where the cell wall of the beans breaks resulting in a darker and caramelized taste.

Usually, the regular espresso is made past the second crack, which creates a more concentrated effect. The flavor becomes more toasted and loses its acidity with more oiliness, creating a deeper and fuller taste. This is why the regular espresso remains one of the top choices of coffee connoisseurs in making coffee beverages.

Unlike regular coffee that can be prepared using a coffee pot, an authentic espresso is made using an espresso machine or an AeroPress. This gives a shot or a double shot of espresso commonly used in making cappuccino, latte, and more due to its bolder taste that gives a heavier feel and lasting finish in the mouth when drank.

Blonde Espresso And Regular Espresso Caffeine Levels

Some people think that the lighter the coffee beans are, the lower their caffeine levels have, which is a mistake. At Starbucks, for example, its blonde espresso in grande size gives 360 mg of caffeine content. Its dark roast or the regular espresso in the same size provides 260 mg of caffeine, which is 100 mg lower than the blonde espresso.

Like tea in general, the shorter the beans are in the roaster, the higher the caffeine levels they provide. The longer they are in the roaster, the lower the caffeine content they give.

In the case of the blonde espresso and the regular espresso, the caffeine levels are slightly different but not as high as they are when compared to regular coffee.

Blonde Espresso And Regular Espresso Nutritional Facts

What makes an espresso ideal for those who are trying to lose weight is that it doesn’t contain fats and carbs. You can’t actually choose between these two because they both contain zero fats. What you can only choose is the taste that’s different from the other due to its roasting process.

  • Blonde espresso contains zero fats, zero carbs, and 10 calories per pod
  • Regular espresso gives zero fats, zero carbs, zero calories, and 183 mg of potassium for every two tablespoons.

How To Prepare The Blonde Espresso and The Regular Espresso

With the right timing and the right equipment at home, you can make your own blonde espresso or the regular one as much as coffee giants like Starbucks can. You may have to choose good quality equipment to create your own espresso. It’s another budgeting in the process, but if you’re a coffee-lover, it’s worth the penny.

Actually, money may never be an issue if you’re a coffee enthusiast who wants to explore different kinds of coffee beverages such as the blonde espresso, and the regular espresso. There are so many types of coffee drinks that are prepared in different ways such as adding sugar, milk, or creamer to them. This, of course, is an adventure for the coffee aficionados.

For both types of espresso, you will need an espresso machine to prepare your cup of joe at home. You can check the Nespresso Vertuo Plus Coffee and Espresso Maker on Amazon, or the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine. Any of them is worth the investment.

Homemade Blonde Espresso

You will need:

  • Filtered water
  • 15 or 18 g of ground blonde roast beans

What you need to do:

  • Clean the portafilter to ensure that there are no coffee grounds left in the espresso machine.
  • Put the blonde roast coffee in the portafilter and grind. Tamp and measure the filled portafilter then clean off the loose coffee.
  • To pull shots, put the portafilter back into the group head then place a cup under it.
  • When pulling shots are done, take off the portafilter then flush the group head.

Pro Tip: The blonde espresso doesn’t need as much sugar, but it works great with vanilla syrup and almond milk just like Starbucks’ menu. Also, any espresso-based drinks can be prepared using blonde espresso, and the taste is still amazing.

Homemade Regular Espresso

You will need:

  • Dark roast coffee of about 8 g for a single shot, and 15 g for two shots
  • Filtered water

What you need to do:

  • Measure your coffee beans and grind. Set the grinding level according to your preference.
  • Distribute the coffee grounds using your fingers evenly. You can place the portafilter on the table and tamp the grounds.
  • Start pulling your shots by placing a cup underneath. It should give you a shot or two depending on how many grams you put it on during the grinding process.

Pro Tip: Dark roast espresso works well with any espresso-based beverages, including cappuccinos, Americanos, ristrettos, and many more. If you’re a latte lover, you will need to have steamed milk by using a steam wand.


The blonde espresso and the regular espresso are both perfect for any espresso-based beverages and can be prepared at home with the right equipment. Although they give different tastes due to their roasting time, both espressos work great with any coffee drink.

So, are you a blonde espresso person, or a regular espresso lover? We choose both!