What is a Turbo Shot? All You Need to Know!

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An espresso machine is steaming a turbo shot of coffee.
Table of Contents
An espresso machine is steaming a turbo shot of coffee.

Key Takeaways:

  • Turbo shots in espresso making involve using medium ground coffeelow-pressure extraction, and longer contact time for optimal flavor extraction.
  • The benefits of turbo shots include increased consistency and repeatabilityenhanced sweetness and clarity in taste, and cost-cutting potential in commercial settings.
  • Turbo shots offer a more controlled and precise extraction process, resulting in consistent flavors and quality.
  • They deliver a sweeter and clearer tasting espresso by fully extracting all flavors from the coffee grounds.

What is a Turbo Shot?

A turbo shot is a type of espresso extraction method that involves using medium ground coffee and applying a specific pressure and timing during the extraction process.

Is your cup of espresso not living up to your expectations? Recent developments in coffee technology introduce a game-changer: turbo shots. This blog will delve into the science and benefits behind this new approach to espresso making, from its sweetened taste profile to its cost-saving potential for commercial shops.

Ready for a deeper dive into the world of robust, flavorful espressos? Let’s jump right in!

Definition and concept

Turbo shots are revolutionizing the world of espresso making. This innovative method utilizes a medium grind coffee and is known for its efficient low-pressure extraction process. The secret lies in flooding the coffee puck with fresh solvent, leading to high extraction and phenomenal flavor.

Forget about choking or channeling issues, the turbo shot removes these obstacles while delivering unique taste nuances not seen in traditional espresso brewing methods. It’s science meets artistry on your tastebuds!

Extraction process using medium ground coffee

The extraction process for turbo shots involves using medium ground coffee, which allows for optimal flavor extraction. The medium grind size ensures that the water can pass through the coffee grounds evenly and extract all the necessary flavors. This results in a balanced and flavorful espresso shot.

Extraction pressure and time

Turbo shots are known for their low-pressure extraction, which allows for a slower and more controlled release of flavors from the coffee grounds.

This gentle approach helps to avoid over-extraction or bitterness in the final cup of espresso. The longer extraction time also allows for a thorough saturation of the coffee grounds, resulting in a more flavorful and aromatic brew.

By fine-tuning both the pressure and time, baristas can achieve optimal results in terms of taste and quality.

Benefits of Turbo Shots in Espresso Making

Turbo shots in espresso making offer increased consistency and repeatability, enhanced sweetness and clarity in taste, as well as cost-cutting potential in commercial settings.

Increased consistency and repeatability

One major benefit of using turbo shots in espresso making is the increased consistency and repeatability it offers. With traditional espresso brewing methods, there can be variations in pressure and extraction time, leading to inconsistent flavors and quality.

Turbo shots provide a more controlled and precise extraction process, resulting in consistent and repeatable results every time you make an espresso. This is especially important for coffee shops or commercial settings where maintaining consistency across multiple cups of coffee is crucial for customer satisfaction.

By using turbo shots, baristas can ensure that each cup of espresso they serve will have the same level of taste and quality, creating a reliable experience for their customers.

Enhanced sweetness and clarity in taste

Turbo shots in espresso making offer enhanced sweetness and clarity in taste. This is achieved through the low-pressure extraction process, which allows for optimal flavor development.

By flooding the coffee puck with fresh solvent, turbo shots ensure that all of the flavors are fully extracted from the grounds, resulting in a more balanced and flavorful espresso.

The lower pressure also helps reduce any potential bitterness or harshness that can arise from high-pressure extractions. With turbo shots, you can enjoy a sweeter and clearer tasting espresso that truly highlights the nuances of your coffee beans.

Cost-cutting potential in commercial settings

In commercial settings, using turbo shots in espresso making can be a cost-saving strategy. By achieving increased consistency and repeatability with turbo shots, coffee shops can reduce wastage from failed or inconsistent shots.

This means less wasted coffee grounds and fewer resources used overall. Additionally, the enhanced sweetness and clarity of taste that turbo shots offer can attract more customers and potentially lead to higher sales volume.

With a streamlined and efficient process, coffee shops can save time and money while still delivering high-quality espresso to their customers.

Comparison with Other Espresso Variations

Turbo Shot vs Lungo

Turbo Shot is a modern espresso-making method that has gained popularity for its numerous benefits. When comparing Turbo Shots to Lungo, there are some key differences to consider.

Lungo shot is an extended extraction process where more water passes through the coffee grounds, resulting in a longer brew time and a larger volume of liquid. Turbo Shots focus on efficiency and consistency by using lower pressure and a shorter extraction time.

This results in a smaller, concentrated shot with enhanced sweetness and clarity in taste compared to the milder flavor profile of a Lungo shot. So if you’re looking for a quick and flavorful espresso experience, turbo shots may be your best bet!

Turbo Shot vs Allonge Coffee

Turbo shots and allonge coffee are two different variations of espresso that offer unique flavor profiles. A turbo shot is a low-pressure extraction method that floods the coffee grounds with fresh solvent, resulting in enhanced sweetness and clarity in taste.

On the other hand, allonge coffee is made by adding hot water to a regular espresso shot, diluting it for a milder flavor.

While both options provide tasty espresso, turbo shots have the advantage of improved efficiency and consistency. By using this method, cafes can save money as it minimizes variation in the brewing process, producing consistent results every time.


With increased consistency and repeatability, enhanced sweetness and clarity in taste, and potential cost-cutting advantages in commercial settings, turbo shots offer a modern approach to achieving the perfect espresso.

So why not give it a try? Turbocharge your coffee brewing skills and enjoy an exceptional cup of joe every time.


How is a Turbo Shot different from a regular espresso shot?

A Turbo Shot differs from a regular espresso shot in a few ways. Firstly, it uses a coarser grind and a higher extraction yield, resulting in a faster flow rate of water through the coffee. Secondly, it typically has a longer shot time, usually around 15 seconds, compared to the usual 25-30 seconds for a regular espresso shot. Lastly, it can have a more uneven extraction, especially when compared to a carefully calibrated espresso recipe.

What are the advantages of brewing a Turbo Shot?

Brewing a Turbo Shot can have a few advantages. Firstly, it allows for the extraction of more flavor from the coffee due to the higher extraction yield. This can result in a more flavorful and complex cup of coffee. Additionally, the faster flow rate and shorter shot time can lead to a different flavor profile, with less emphasis on the crema and more emphasis on the actual coffee flavors. Finally, using a coarser grind can help reduce the risk of over-extraction and make it easier to achieve a tasty and balanced shot.

How can I brew a Turbo Shot?

To brew a Turbo Shot, you will need an espresso machine and a grinder. Start by setting your grinder to a coarser grind setting than you would typically use for a regular espresso shot. Aim for a grind size that allows for a faster flow of water through the coffee. Next, dose your coffee into the portafilter. For a standard double shot, you can use around 18-20g of coffee. Tamp the coffee evenly and firmly, ensuring an even surface area. Finally, extract the shot, aiming for a shot time of around 15 seconds and a brew ratio of 1:2 (e.g. 18g in, 36g out).

Can I use any coffee for a Turbo Shot?

While you can technically use any coffee for a Turbo Shot, it is recommended to use specialty coffee beans. Specialty coffee beans are generally of higher quality and offer more complex and nuanced flavors. This can enhance the overall taste of your Turbo Shot. Additionally, using freshly roasted beans and grinding them right before brewing can further improve the flavor.

Are there any other variables I need to consider when brewing a Turbo Shot?

Yes, there are a few other variables that can impact the outcome of your Turbo Shot. The ratio of coffee to water is an important consideration. Aim for a brew ratio of 1:2 (e.g. 18g of coffee to 36g of water). The water temperature should be around 200°F (93°C). Additionally, pay attention to the flow rate of water during the extraction process. It should be fast and consistent, without any pauses or interruptions. Finally, experiment with different beans, grind sizes, and shot times to find the flavor profile that you enjoy the most.

Can I make a Turbo Shot without an espresso machine?

Unfortunately, a Turbo Shot requires an espresso machine to achieve the desired results. The high pressure and temperature provided by an espresso machine are necessary for extracting the flavors from the coffee properly. While you may be able to mimic a Turbo Shot using alternative brewing methods, such as moka pots or AeroPress, the result will not be the same as a true Turbo Shot.

Who is Scott Rao and what is his contribution to the Turbo Shot?

Scott Rao is a well-known coffee expert and author who has made significant contributions to the specialty coffee industry. He has written several books on coffee brewing and is known for his scientific approach to coffee extraction. Rao has written about the concept of Turbo Shots and has explored the benefits and challenges associated with this brewing method in his work.

Are there any potential drawbacks to brewing a Turbo Shot?

While a Turbo Shot can result in a flavorful and complex cup of coffee, there are a few potential drawbacks to consider. Firstly, due to the faster flow rate and potential for uneven extraction, the resulting shot may be less balanced and more prone to over or under-extraction. Additionally, the coarser grind used in a Turbo Shot may limit the extraction of certain flavors, especially in lighter roasts. Lastly, brewing a Turbo Shot requires precise control over various variables, including grind size, shot time, and extraction yield, which can be challenging for less experienced baristas.

About the Author:
Sophia Lewis, a travel blogger with a focus on global coffee cultures, explores coffee traditions from Colombia to Turkey. Her expertise lies in understanding the cultivation, brewing, and enjoyment of coffee in different cultures. Through articles, travel vlogs, and tastings, Sophia brings a global perspective to coffee, emphasizing ethical and sustainable practices, and invites readers to join her community of global coffee enthusiasts.