Are Coffee Beans Seeds?

Coffee is typically referred to as a bean in its un-ground state, but is that accurate? Is it really a seed?

Coffee is typically referred to as a bean in its un-ground state, but is that accurate? Is it really a seed?

The Short Answer

Yes, coffee beans are seeds.

The Long Answer

Ah, coffee. The nectar of the gods. From one little bean comes all of our pep and energy for the day. But, wait… is it a bean? I mean, it’s called a coffee BEAN, so it has to be a bean, right? Wrong.

Coffee is actually not a bean at all, but a seed. More accurately, it is the seed of the coffee plant, or Coffea, as it is typically known. They are small trees, sometimes even shrubs which can be typically found in southern Africa, South America, and tropical Asia. The plant produces small red or purple fruits, commonly referred to as cherries. (They’re not actual cherries, that’s a whole other blog.)

Inside of each cherry are two of what we call coffee beans. They’re called beans because they resemble beans, but they share absolutely no properties with them.

So, when you crack open a new can of coffee beans and inhale that sweet sweet aroma, just remember that what you’re smelling is not a bean at all, but a seed.

Looking to mix it up from your regular morning cup of joe? Might I suggest a coffee float? And our Christmas Coffee Blend makes a lovely homemade holiday gift!

Coffee is typically referred to as a bean in its un-ground state, but is that accurate? Is it really a seed? #coffee #bean #seeds
Coffee is typically referred to as a bean in its un-ground state, but is that accurate? Is it really a seed? #coffee #bean #seeds

Kevin Kessler

Kevin J. Kessler is an experienced professional writer and published author living in Orlando, Florida. With a lifelong passion for food, this sandwich loving Italian boy enjoys exploring unanswered questions about the foods we all know and love so well. Kevin’s foodie lifestyle was born through his love of Walt Disney World and the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. A lover of stories, he enjoys trying new dishes from all over the world and learning everything there is to know about where food comes from, how its prepared, and what variations on it exist.