The Best Instant Coffee 2022

Instant coffee is one of the most popular types of coffee in the UK due to its convenience and long shelf life. Although it isn’t a “proper coffee”, it serves a purpose and many brands offer high quality options that taste just like the real thing.

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Best Instant Coffee
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If you require a quick answer, the best instant coffee is the Nescafe Gold Blend, which provides a strong flavour and great value for money in the bulk buy containers. However, if you would like something a bit different such as a flavoured instant coffee, the Beanies alternative is the best option with multiple flavours available.

After testing and enjoying multiple branded instant coffee’s over the years, we were able to rate the available options accordingly. Some of the factors we considered included the coffee’s taste, flavours, bulk buy options and value.

Instant Coffee Comparison

Instant CoffeeSize(s)
Nescafé Gold Blend500, 750 or 1,000g
Nescafé Azera Americano500g
Beanies Flavoured50g
Lavazza Prontissimo Intenso95g
Illy Classico Intenso95g
Starbucks Medium Roast8 x 3.3g

Due to the fact most coffee drinkers will have multiple cups of coffee each day, it’s worth purchasing instant coffee in bulk. Although initially more expensive, the larger tins offer the best value for the money and a longer shelf life.

Below is a list of the best instant coffees that can be prepared quickly and are available in light, medium or dark roasts.

The Best Instant Coffee

1. Nescafe Gold Blend Instant Coffee

Nescafe Gold Blend Instant Coffee
The Nescafe Gold Blend is a highly rated instant coffee that offers a well-rounded taste and rich aroma within every cup. According to the brand, it’s the nation’s favourite and has been expertly crafted for all coffee drinking occasions.

In terms of the creation, it’s made from mountain grown Arabica beans, which the brand state are ten times finer than some of the alternatives available in the UK.

Other features of the Nescafe Gold Blend include:

  • Available in 500, 750 or 1000g tins
  • Hinged lid for simple and secure sealing
  • Best served with hot (not boiling) water
  • Smooth tasting and rich aroma
  • Available as a decaf coffee
  • 100% recyclable metal tin
  • Made in the UK

Overall, the Nescafe Gold Blend is the best all-round instant coffee that provides a strong flavour and great value for the money. For those that drink multiple coffees per day, the 1KG tin offers the best value and is worth paying the extra.
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2. Nescafe Azera Americano Instant Coffee

Azera Americano Barista Style Instant Coffee
By far the most popular and one of the newest additions to the Nescafe’s selection is their Americano instant coffee. According to the brand, they have developed their Americano by combining their signature granules and finely roasted coffee beans. This provides the great taste along with a layer of velvety coffee crema.

Other features of the Nescafe Instant Americano include:

  • Full-bodied rich flavour
  • Available in single sachets or 500g tin
  • Suitable for creating iced coffee drinks
  • Stays fresh for up to 12 months
  • Hinged lid that clicks to close
  • 100% recyclable metal tin
  • Made in the UK

Although more expensive than the Gold blend, the Americano instant coffee is a highly rated option that won’t disappoint. For anyone that loves Americano’s, it’s the best instant coffee that creates a premium barista style coffee every time.
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3. Beanies Flavour Instant Coffee

Beanies Creamy Caramel Flavour Instant Coffee
For those that enjoy flavoured instant coffee, the Beanies brand have an excellent selection of flavours to choose from. There is a total of 17 different flavours that includes everything from cookie dough to caramel popcorn.

Other features of the Beanies Flavoured Instant Coffee include:

  • 50g glass jars
  • Suitable for vegetarians and vegans
  • Choice of 17 different flavours
  • Only 2 calories per cup of coffee
  • Sugar and gluten free

For those that want to experience flavours that they never knew was possible from an instant coffee, Beanies have the answer. It’s the best flavoured instant coffee on the market and unlike some of the cheaper alternatives, it actually tastes exactly how you would expect.
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4. Lavazza Prontissimo Intenso Instant Coffee

Lavazza Prontissimo Intenso
The Italian Lavazza brand are well-known for their ground coffee and pods but they also produce their very own instant coffee. It’s a premium option that has recently been updated and enriched with 10% fine ground coffee.

Other features Lavazza Prontissimo Intenso include:

  • Each 95g tin makes 52 cups of coffee
  • Enriched with 10% fine ground coffee
  • 100% Colombian Arabica
  • Gluten free
  • Made in Italy

Overall, the Lavazza Prontissimo Intenso offers a well-rounded flavour with a great aroma and is ideal for those that enjoy strong coffee. Considering that it’s a “premium” coffee, it offers relatively good value for the money too. The only drawback is that it’s only available in small 95g tins, which you may go through fairly quickly.
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5. Illy Classico Instant Coffee

illy Coffee Intenso Instant Coffee Dark Roast
Illy are another brand that are well-known for their coffee beans and ground coffee selection. However, they also offer their very own instant coffee, which is available as a medium or dark roast to best suit your requirements.

The medium roast offers hints of caramel, organ blossom and jasmine for a slight sweet taste. However, for those that would prefer a stronger taste, the dark roast features warm notes of cocoa and dried fruit.

Other features of the Illy Classico include:

  • Metal 95g tins
  • 100% Arabica coffee beans
  • Velvety smooth and perfectly balanced taste
  • Premium Italian quality
  • DNS certified

The Illy Classico is a premium instant coffee that provides a unique taste and is available as a medium or dark roast. The only drawback is the expensive price tag, which even when bought in bulk is still much higher than the alternatives.
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6. Starbucks Instant Medium Roast

Starbucks Instant Medium Roast and Microground Coffee
If you don’t own a coffee machine and can’t get to a Starbucks shop, the best alternative is to use their instant coffee. They offer a selection of flavours but the medium roast is their most popular and it provides an ultra smooth and great tasting coffee that isn’t too strong.

Other features of the Starbucks Instant Coffee include:

  • 8 x 3.3g sachets
  • Each sachets requires 8 oz of hot water
  • 100% Arabica
  • Subtle notes of cocoa and toasted nuts
  • Medium roast with a balanced taste

Overall, the Starbucks Medium Roast is a great tasting coffee that’s developed by the best in the business. However, the expensive price tag may put the majority of people off. It’s also only available in small sachets, which is ideal for travel but can be frustrating if you enjoy large cups of coffee.
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How We Rated The Instant Coffee

After years of trying instant coffee from multiple brands, we have definitely tried some of the best on the market. However, along with testing out a whole range of options, we also based our recommendations upon a number of factors. Some of the factors that we considered included the instant coffee’s taste, flavours, bulk buy options and value for money.

Best Instant Coffee UK


Although instant coffee isn’t classed as a “proper coffee”, it still provides a much needed caffeine boost in the morning. All of our recommendations are suited to a range of budgets and are available in light, medium and dark roasts. For the best value for the money, we strongly recommend purchasing the coffee in larger bulk buy containers.

The Author Who Worked On This Article

author dan darimo

Dan Morgan

As a keen DIY’er, gardener and somebody that loves the latest tech, Dan is someone that brings years of experience in multiple trades. Since buying his first house, he has been obsessed with renovating properties and filling it with the latest products. This has led him down the road of testing hundreds of products and creating in-depth “how-to” and informative guides that offer his first-hand experience. Other interests include working on cars, keeping fit through sports or his home gym, caravanning and drinking great coffee.

If you would like to read more about Darimo and the authors, you can visit our about page. This goes into great detail regarding how we test products, create our guides and everything else.

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