Buying a new “Air Fryer” (basically a toaster oven with a fan in it) led to re-discovery of what a great coffee roasting method this can be!
A current craze in the kitchen is the Air Fryer, which is most cases is a glorified Transfer of heat through the bulk movement of a fluid. In the case of coffee roasting, we discuss convection in the context of heated air moving as a fluid through a roast chamber. More toaster oven. This means it’s a typical roaster with a high speed fan to move hot air around food, and cook quickly and evenly.
There have been many types of convection ovens and toaster ovens for many years. But I guess it took the new “air fryer” moniker, and the fact that the one I use (Cosori Brand, 30L, 31.7 Quart, CS130AO Model, $199 online) has a rotisserie. I saw some inexpensive metal mesh drums online, and the fact the spit in this Cosori model fit, and said, “what the heck, I’ll try it.” I mean, I needed a new toaster oven after all. Note that when I talk about an “air fryer toaster oven here” I mean just that … the type that looks like a big toaster oven! I think many types of air fryers are obviously not right for The application of heat to green coffee seeds (beans) to create palatable material for brewing a great cup!: Coffee roasting is a chemical process induced by heat, by which aromatics, acids, and other flavor components More, such as the HotPot types, top loading ones, or ones with front loading fryer baskets and such.
How to Roast 1/2 to 1 Pound of Coffee in an Air Fryer: Video
So here’s my video about roasting coffee in a convection oven air fryer. I roast a 300 gram batch in this video, using the best method I have at this point (and after burning through a lot of coffee!) I am still refining my method, but most of my batches are turning our really well. In this video I discuss what has and hasn’t worked for me, the best settings to use, and the Cupping is a method of tasting coffee by steeping grounds in separate cups for discrete amounts of ground coffee, to reveal good flavors and defects to their fullest. It has formal elements and methodology in More results of various batches I roasted while searching for the best settings and technique.
Oven Coffee Roasting Then and Now
We used to talk about oven roasting / toaster oven roasting. It was part of the original material I created when I started Sweet Maria’s in 1997! But roasting in an oven dropped off the radar for several reasons. The main issue was that it was hard to move the coffee around and roast evenly.
That is still the case with the convection toaster but much less of an issue since air flow is creating more even roasting. The other drawback was that oven roasting could be too slow, baking the coffee rather than roasting it. But the newer air fryer toasters can roast coffee in 15:00 or less, with First crack in one of two distinct heat-induced pyrolytic reactions in coffee. It is distinguished by a cracking or popping sound in the coffee, and occurs between 390 and 410 degrees Fahrenheit in most coffee More being possible at 10 to 11 minutes.
Roasting coffee in an air fryer or other convection toaster oven with an internal fan / blower works well! Especially considering that you might already have one in the kitchen!
Roasting Coffee in a Rotisserie Drum
I bought this particular model of air fryer because it had a rotisserie, and because the spit rod that came with it fit and inexpensive metal mesh wire drum sold online. I want to explain why you should not go this route … or more specifically, why it isn’t the best way to use your convection toaster/ air fryer to roast coffee as far as all my testing goes (and I did a lot of roasts and burned up a lot of coffee trying!) Sure, roasting in a drum is even and yes, it turns The processed seed of the coffee tree fruit. Coffee is a flowering shrub that produces fruit. The seeds of the fruit are processed, roasted, ground and prepared as an infusion.: Coffee is a flowering shrub More brown. And yes, it looks more “pro” than cooking coffee on a sheet or in a basket. Anyway …here’s a separate article explaining the problems with using a Rotisserie Drum in a Air Fryer Toaster Oven.
While I found the rotisserie setting disappointing, I became curious of the potential of the air fry settings and similar ones available by using “bake” function but manually setting the fan on the highest level possible. And I had some good results!
Pros and Cons of Convection Toaster Oven Coffee Roasting or Air Fryer Coffee Roasting
I am still working to master my method roasting in my air fryer toaster oven. I have tested many variations though and gone through a lot of coffee doing it! It’s not that bad though; most of my test batches are quite good, and it’s a fun process to figure out which way is best. Note that I can only speak to the particular equipment I am using, and that this method, like all cooking and experiments, involves some risks to you and your equipment. I am not endorsing this, just trying to be helpful so you can learn from all my trials and errors:
Pros: Reasons the air fryer or convection oven coffee roasting method might be worth a try!
- This seems great for roasting larger amounts of coffee, up to 1 pound. I prefer half pound, up to 300 grams in the model I use.
- You can see and hear the roast process … like really well! (It depends on the ovens internal light of course. Many of these have as yellow hue too). Since the coffee lays still in front of you, you can see first An audible popping sound heard during roasting. In coffee, one refers to "first crack" and "second crack," which come from two different classes of chemical reactions.: An audible popping sound heard during roasting. In coffee, More happen as never before, and it’s kind of magical! It’s easy to hear first crack too.
- This method seems best for medium roasts (City+ roast is an ideal roast level that occurs roughly between 425 and 435 degrees Fahrenheit in many coffee roasters with a responsive bean probe where First Crack starts in the 395 to 405 degree More to Full City). The light roasts tasted a little flatter and less sweet than other roasters we sell. Dark roasts are fine, but the smoke produced as coffee enters 2nd crack can get overwhelming. Maybe you are willing to carry your machine from the kitchen to the patio or garage to roast each time. Not me.
- The roasts can be really nice, especially the Full City roasts carried just to the edge of After First Crack, a roast reaction around 440 to 450 degrees that is distinguished by a snapping sound. Second Crack is the second audible clue the roaster-operator receives about the degree-of-roast, following First Crack. Whereas More. They have a nice Bittersweet is from the language of chocolate, and describes the co-presence of positive bittering compounds balanced by sweetness. It is directly related to caramelization, but has inputs from other roast reactions, as well as bittering More quality and the Kenya is the East African powerhouse of the coffee world. Both in the cup, and the way they run their trade, everything is topnotch.: Kenya is the East African powerhouse of the coffee world. Both More I tested had a lot of the Blackberry flavor in coffee sometimes relates to slightly more developed roast levels.: Blackberry is found as a fragrance, aroma or flavor in some coffees. I find that it is less obvious at very light roast More and black currant fruit I so love.
Cons: Reasons you might want to not roast coffee in a toaster oven or air fryer like this…
- You need a convection type model, or an “air fryer” to do this well. A regular toaster oven without a convection fan isn’t the same thing.
- I really can’t speak to other types of air fryers at this point either. I can only refer to my experience with the front-loading types like the Cosori brand one I use. Other’s have actual air fry baskets and those seem inappropriate. But I don’t know that for a fact.
- Chaff is paper-like skin that comes off the coffee in the roasting process. Chaff from roasting is part of the innermost skin (the silverskin) of the coffee fruit that still cling to the beans after More can come off the coffee and get on your burner or into your fan. It might be bad for the machine. Like other things you cook in your oven or air fryer, it can ignite. We don’t sell toasters and air fryers for coffee roasting. So be cautious and alert. You never, ever step away from any roaster when it is in use. That goes triple for this method.
- I am still battling “hot spots” in the oven chamber. Since this is largely a static method – the coffee doesn’t get rotated and turned, but largely lays still while hot air circulates around it, some parts of the cooking tray show lighter and darker roast areas. Playing with different trays (perforated trays can help), thicknesses of coffee, and patterns of distribution of the beans on the tray can all help. Agitating the coffee during the roast works, but it’s hard to fully rotate coffee on a flat surface. Simply shaking the tray doesn’t generally do this. But you likely can develop a technique that does pretty well.
- Opening and closing the door of the oven toaster to see the coffee or shake it around loses heat and affects the roast.
- Possible Deal Breaker! Think about it: A A machine for roasting coffee. Or the person operating it! The basic requirements for a coffee roaster are a heating element that gets suitably hot and a mechanism for agitating the beans.: A mechanism for More is not a great multi-function machine. You might not think a rotisserie chicken cooked with the scent of coffee roast smoke sounds bad. But you likely won’t go for coffee with the taste of rotisserie chicken infused in it. Right? So if you use the oven for other functions, they might not be conducive to roasting coffee and vice versa.
- See the “roast range” note in Pros, since it includes the cons of lighter City roasts tasting less sweet than other methods, and dark roasts being too Usually a defect of roasting, or of green coffee processing, smokey notes are sometimes found as a positive flavor in a few exotic coffees; This smell and flavor is similar to fireplace effluence, campfire, or More for the kitchen.
- You need to cool it manually outside of the oven, in a tray. You can use a colander, or use a cookie sheet as I do, which transfers heat away well by spreading the coffee in a thin layer and conducting heat away as well.
- Potential dangers with handling the hot oven tray and coffee, transferring it to cool, etc. Not for the super clumsy. Luckily I am just regular level clumsy.
- Chaff: It doesn’t come off the coffee during the roast. The presence of chaff on the coffee has little effect on the quality of roast but it throws off your perception of roast level, and makes the final result look a little funny. Chaff is easy to remove while cooling, with a fan and some stirring. Best done outdoors though because it is messy.
Convection Oven Roasting FAQ
Please add your comments or questions to this post, and we will incorporate them into the FAQ below:
What is the best Air Fryer to buy for roasting coffee?
I’ll be honest and say I don’t know. I chose the Cosori CS130AO because it was high wattage (1800) and had a rotisserie spit, but that turned out not be ineffective for coffee roasting. It’s also the size of a medium microwave, so I would likely opt for something smaller and without some features like the rotisserie. Let us know what works for you in our comment section below, and I will add it to a list of models that are ok for coffee roasting.
What is the ideal roast time to aim for in an air fryer?
From my tests, you want to push the oven to roast as fast as possible, while still maintaining an even yellowing/tanning phase early in the roast. I have had the best results with 15 minutes to roast 300 grams to City + roast level. I would like to reduce the roast to 13 or 14 minutes and see how that cups, but haven’t had success speeding up the roast while maintaining an even heating phase early in the roast. Preheating the oven is definitely good to get the roast moving, so I recommend it. I can definitely say that my roasts that lagged over 20 minutes had less Sweetness is an important positive quality in fine coffees, and is one of five basic tastes: Sour, Sweet, Salty, Bitter, Savory (Umami). In coffee, sweetness is a highly desirable quality, and the green bean has More.
By the way, what is an air fryer?
The type I have is basically a fancy toaster oven that has convection, that is an internal fan. I had a toaster oven with “convection bake” setting but the air fryer has more controls, and 2 levels of fan speed. There are other configurations of “air fryers” and some seem incompatible with coffee roasting. So in this article I am referring to the toaster oven type with a glass front-facing door.