Coffee beans growing on the Coffea plant in San Cristobal de las Casas.
On Saturday, February 26, 2022, in 
San Cristobal de las Casas, Chiapas, Mexico. (Photo by Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Before It Was Sipped, Coffee Was Actually Once Chewed
By Elaina Friedman
Everybody has their own way of taking their morning dose of coffee, but it’s safe to say that the majority of people will enjoy it in liquid form. However, consuming coffee this way was not always the norm.
The National Coffee Association cites a theory that traces its origin back to the ancient coffee forests of Ethiopia, where legend has it a goat herder named Kaldi took interest in the coffee plant after noticing the burst of energy it gave his goats. Instead of roasting the beans and brewing them into a warm beverage, Kaldi ground up the berries of the coffee tree and rolled them into a ball of energy.
According to PBS, early preparations of coffee in Africa involved crushing up those berries and mixing them with animal fat, creating a very potent energy bar. The coffee innovations that followed largely favored liquid form, but coffee as we know it didn't appear until the 13th century when people in Arabia started roasting the beans.
Liquid coffee is invariably the most popular way to consume the energy-boosting ingredient today, but those chewable energy bars from the days of yore are still around. An Insider article from 2017 introduced Go Cubes, which are “chewable coffee cubes with a fluffy, gummy texture,” and according to the product's sales listing on Jebiga, the cubes come in mocha, “pure drip,” and latte flavors.