I recently purchased a bag of medium roasted coffee beans that is from a popular coffee chain to try to start grinding my own coffee. However, I've found that these beans smell a lot like dirt or even manure with some sort of nauseating nutty smell. This is very different from the same brand's ground coffee which has the usually good smelling coffee.

This is a new bag, so I've decided not to purchase that brand again however I didn't think coffee could smell this way.

What is the smell of this "dirty" scent of the coffee coming from? Is it from the roasting process? Would I get this if I were to roast my own beans?

1 Answer 1


Beans can smell like dirt, especially if they are beans that are known for having an earthy flavor profile. What you want to avoid are rancid smelling beans that can get that way due to the oils being over-oxidized over time. Alway check the roasted-on date and don't drink coffee that is several months old. If the bag has an expiration date instead of a roasted-on date, that means they don't want you know how long ago it was roasted. Don't buy those.

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