Affordable coffee beans to start your day right

Clean, mean coffee beans.

If you’re anything like us, the first thing you do in the morning is make a cup of coffee. We’re talking before-you’re-fully-conscious brewing. Serious coffee drinkers will tell you that having good coffee is a celebration, a ritual, a lifestyle. Any old cup of coffee won’t do—there comes a time in a coffee enthusiast’s life when she realizes that freshly ground coffee makes a big difference. She starts buying whole beans and grinding them at home. We have some serious bean recommendations, but if you’re happy with a cup of Dunkin’ from the side of the road, no hard feelings. To each cup his own. Here are three of our favorite coffee beans that will go down smooth and put some pep in your step.

Goes down smooth: illy Classico Whole Bean Coffee, Medium Roast

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They ethically source everything and have been awarded several years in a row for being a leader in this regard. Amazon

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If you have any Italian relatives, you know that their houses are likely stocked with illy coffee. This Italian brand is well-loved for many reasons. They are known for using 100 percent Arabica beans in all their products. Their flavor profile is consistent and reliable; it’s known for being immediately sweet and velvety. Illy is more popular among folks who prefer the less bitter, more subtle flavor profile. That works for us too. They package their beans in steel containers that are pressurized with inert gas, which keeps the coffee fresher for longer.

Shade-grown: Tanzania Peaberry Coffee

They’re Fair-Trade Certified, Too

Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Amazon

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This is another 100 percent Arabica bean bag that will get your day started with a bang. The noted difference here has to do with the peaberry bean; these beans are slightly less common and also considered to be superior in taste from regular beans. They are also known for being more intensely flavorful. Tanzanian peaberry coffee is highly acidic and very bright. As it compares to illy, it is a more powerful flavor. Depending on what you like, both make great cups of coffee.

No additives: Death Wish Coffee

Packs A Punch

This does give you a serious buzz. Amazon

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If you are the kind of person who would love to have your caffeine injected straight into your veins, this is the bean for you. Death Wish’s name is apt—before you know it you’ll be ready to pressure wash your house using a spray bottle. Their beans are not for the faint of heart or palate. This is a dark roast blend of certified organic Arabica and Robusta beans, so you’ll get that bold flavor with notes of chocolate and cherry. Death Wish roasts their beans in small batches, which means you can rely on the freshness and consistency of each bag.