At Beals Science, we love coffee! So much so that we've developed an entire set of lessons to teach people about the science and chemistry of roasting coffee, including information on how to roast your own coffee at home. Why do we care about the science of coffee? We've found many scientific concepts can be taught through coffee and coffee roasting. It is our way of combining science with something millions of people love.


Here you will find free lesson plans, free lab activities and an entire unit on "The Chemistry of Coffee developed by Chemistry teachers. More activites are being added to our "Coffee Science" page all the time so check back often or join our mailing list (see bottom of this page) to be notified as soon as the newest experiments and lessons are posted!


In my chemistry class we finish the school year with a unit called "The Chemistry of Coffee" where we explore the chemical reactions involved in roasting coffee and discover how roasting green coffee beans into different types of roasts produces different compounds and ultimately different, unique flavors. My students look forward to "The Chemistry of Coffee" every year because it is a way for them to connect science with thei...

There are hundreds of ways to brew coffee and, for the most part, they all produce coffee that tastes like you'd expect coffee to taste. So, in the past, I've never worried much about how to brew the coffee, just that I wanted my coffee to be good, hot and full of caffeine. That all changed a few years ago when I really started to explore the chemistry of coffee - from roasting coffee to brewing coffee and I became fascinated...

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The Chemistry of Coffee

The Chemistry of Coffee was developed by Chemistry teachers at Billings Senior High School as an activity-based unit where students learn the process of roasting coffee beans, brewing coffee and tasting coffee. Along the way, they learn Chemistry topics including pH, Acids and Bases, Solutions and Dilutions, Experimental Design and so much more!

Feel free to use all or part of The Chemistry of Coffee in your classroom, with your science club or at home! And, for those who are involved with AP Chemistry, this is the perfect activity for after the AP Chemistry Exam.


The Chemistry of Coffee: Free Labs and Lesson Plans


Supplies list for The Chemistry of Coffee

(Click the item to view on



Whirley Pop Popcorn Popper (recommended)

Air Popcorn Popper


Analog (recommended)​

Digital (convenient but will break at high temperatures)


Gas (recommended for classroom labs with natural gas lines)

Butane (recommended if no natural gas lines are available)

Electric (convenient, but some do not get hot enough)

Coffee Brewer

Coffee Press​ (recommended)

Siphon Brewer

CONA Filterless Siphon Brewer

Chemex Brewer


Other Supplies


Coffee Grinder

Water Boiler

Raw Coffee Beans

Spot Plates (for pH testing)

Universal Indicator (for pH testing)

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Craig Beals  | 

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