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Photos by: Raphael Fernandez

If you’re feeling lost looking for coffee shops other than Starbucks, I have good news for you. The Houston area is home to several amazing independently-owned coffee shops.

Houston is great because there is a variety of coffee shops that represent the various neighborhoods and diversity that this city has to offer.

Cougar Grounds (duh)

I feel like this wouldn’t be a UH-centered article if I didn’t mention Cougar Grounds. I love CG because of how accessible it is to campus, and how high quality the drinks are. The shop recently opened up a location in the Health 2 building, so I would definitely check that out.

Coral Sword

Coral Sword is the perfect spot for someone who loves board games and a nice beverage. The coffee shop has several board games available for guests to check out while they enjoy their stay.

You can enjoy a high-quality drink while trying out a brand-new board game with your friends. They also have regular game nights which is the perfect way to meet someone new.


Bohemeo’s is about a three-minute drive from campus and is the perfect place to make some friends as well as enjoy some live music. A lot of Houston-based bands regularly perform in the back of the shop creating a cozy atmosphere.

Black Hole Coffee House

Black Hole Coffee House is one of my all-time favorite coffee shops because of its amazing interior design and chill ambiance. It is a quiet coffee shop in Montrose making it a great study spot.

Campesino Coffee

Campesino Coffee is well known for its Latin American-inspired drink and food menu. The coffee shop has creative drinks and amazing tamales. It’s a great place to catch up with your friends because of its vast sitting area and comfy couches.

While these are my Houston recommendations, I recognize that a lot of students at UH are commuters who are probably looking for a pick-me-up before they begin their drive to campus. So I selected a couple of coffee shops in Katy, Sugar Land and Spring, as well as a couple of drive-through chains in a variety of suburbs.


I would recommend Serene Beans. It is a small mom-and-pop coffee shop that also serves as a community hang-out spot. It’s a great hole-in-the-wall place if you’re looking to try something new.

Sugar Land

I live in Sugar Land, so I am biased to Beans Up Coffee. They recently opened up several drive-through locations throughout the Sugar Land area. They have consistently good service and drinks, and have a diverse menu that accommodates all coffee drinkers (and I’m not just saying that because I work there).


Lastly, I would recommend Good City Coffee Co. in Humble. Although their hours are pretty limited, they have quality drinks for a good price.


Along with that, if you are looking for drive-through coffee shops, that aren’t Starbucks, Dutch Bros or Dunkin, I would recommend Summer Moon Coffee and Black Rock Coffee Bar.

Although Summer Moon is on the pricier side, their drinks are heavenly. I would recommend trying their moon milk paired with a latte. Black Rock Coffee Bar has consistently good drinks for a very good price. They have a variety of energy drinks and refreshers if you’re not necessarily looking for something espresso-based.

I hope this article allows you to find new coffee shops with high-quality ingredients and can satisfy your need for caffeine at any time of day.

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