Waka Coffee Review: Is This Instant Coffee Worth It?

Vietnamese Coffee Exporter
Waka Coffee Review

Waka Coffee Review: Enjoying delicious instant coffee might seem impossible, especially for specialty coffee enthusiasts. However, with the rise of premium instant brews, this is becoming a reality. California-based Waka Coffee is leading the charge to “Bring Instant Coffee Back.” But have they succeeded? I tried their entire product line to find out. Read on for our Waka Coffee review and see if this high-end instant coffee is worth your investment.

What Is Waka Coffee?

Waka Coffee was born from a problem that many busy individuals face: the need for quick, quality coffee without the hassle of traditional brewing or the expense of café visits. Founder and CEO David Kovalevski, dealing with limited space and time in his small apartment, found that existing instant coffee options were unsatisfactory. Determined to fill this gap in the market, he created Waka Coffee with the mission to make instant coffee both delicious and convenient.

Waka Coffee Review: What Makes It Special?

Waka Coffee’s commitment to quality starts with their choice of coffee beans. They use 100% Arabica beans, known for their sweeter, smoother, and less bitter taste compared to the more commonly used Robusta beans in low-end instant coffees.

Waka Coffee sources its beans from single origins rather than blending them from various regions. This approach allows you to experience the unique flavors specific to certain areas, and it enables Waka to tailor their roasts to highlight the best characteristics of each coffee.

Their coffee is 100% freeze-dried, using advanced technology to preserve the flavor integrity. Unlike the cheaper spray-drying method, freeze-drying doesn’t expose the coffee to heat, which can alter its taste.

So How Does It Taste?

I sampled Waka Coffee’s current offerings: a Colombian medium roast, an Indian light roast, and a decaf Colombian medium roast. I also noted that they provide Instant Kenyan Black Tea and Instant Japanese Matcha, which come in attractive box sets perfect for gifts.

Colombian Medium Roast

Preparing this coffee was straightforward. I dissolved the instant coffee granules in nearly boiling water, which resulted in a rich, thick brew that didn’t have the typical thin appearance of instant coffee.

The aroma was sweet and nutty, reminiscent of marzipan. The flavor was bold and rich with caramel sweetness and a hint of citrus acidity, followed by a complex aftertaste of chocolate, smoke, and toffee. Adding cream mellowed the complexity but enhanced the nutty and chocolate notes, making it equally delightful.

Indian Light Roast

Light roasts are a bold choice for instant coffee, showcasing the true character of the beans. Waka’s Indian light roast promises low acidity with chocolate and hazelnut flavors, though my experience differed slightly.

The brewed coffee had a spicy cinnamon aroma with bright citrus acidity and a dry finish typical of light roasts. Adding cream revealed the promised chocolate and hazelnut flavors, transforming the cup into a deliciously fruity brew. This light roast impressed me with its complexity, a rarity in instant coffee.

Colombian Decaf Medium Roast

Finding a good decaf instant coffee is challenging, but Waka’s decaf matched the flavor profile of its caffeinated counterpart. It delivered the same rich and bold taste, making it perfect for late-night coffee cravings without the caffeine.

Iced Coffee

Instant coffee is excellent for making iced coffee quickly. I used Waka’s Indian light roast for its bright flavors. After dissolving the granules in a small amount of hot water, I added cold water, ice, and almond milk for a refreshing iced coffee. The process was simple, and the result was delicious.

An Environmentally Friendly Choice

Waka Coffee is committed to sustainability and environmental protection. For those seeking a convenient brew without the environmental impact of single-use coffee pods, Waka Coffee is the perfect solution. Their instant coffee is not only tastier and easier to brew but also environmentally friendly.

Waka’s dedication to the environment is best exemplified by their Add Water Give Water program. Recognizing the extensive water usage in coffee production and the lack of clean drinking water in coffee-growing regions, Waka donates 4% of its profits to “charity: water,” supporting clean water projects globally.

Additionally, Waka Coffee prioritizes sustainability through its easy-to-recycle paper packaging and bulk purchase options, which help reduce single-serve packaging waste.


While Waka Coffee is not the cheapest instant coffee available, it offers excellent value for its quality. It is more affordable than other premium instant brands like Alpine Start or Sudden Coffee and comparable in price to Starbucks VIA or Keurig K-Cups but with a superior taste.

  • 8 single-serve packets: $9.99 ($1.25 per serving)
  • 3.5-ounce bulk: $16.36 ($0.75 per serving)
  • 8-ounce bulk: $34.99 ($0.49 per serving)

Who Is It For?

Waka Coffee is ideal for various situations, especially for those on the go. It’s perfect for camping, providing a lightweight, quick-brewing option that requires no special equipment other than a way to boil water. There’s also no cleanup involved, making it highly practical for outdoor adventures.

Travelers will appreciate the convenience of carrying high-quality coffee, avoiding the often subpar offerings of hotel room pods or conference urns. Office workers can enjoy a better coffee experience without resorting to the stale office pot, and busy mornings at home become easier with a quick, quality cup of instant coffee.

For those who entertain, having Waka Coffee on hand means you can offer a delicious cup of decaf without the fuss. Your guests won’t even know it’s instant, especially if you create a little kitchen charade.

The Verdict

Initially skeptical, I became a convert after trying Waka Coffee. This instant coffee isn’t just good for instant coffee; it’s genuinely good. While it may not replace the experience of freshly ground beans prepared by a barista, it surpasses the quality of many drip coffee machines.

If you’re seeking a quick, convenient, and high-quality cup of coffee, whether at home, in the office, or on a camping trip, Waka Coffee is an excellent choice. It stands out as one of the best instant coffees available today.