How Much Caffeine In a Cup Of Coffee?

While we can not start our days without our daily dose of caffeine, it is vital to keep a check on our caffeine consumption. Many people start their day with a cup of coffee. However, one must always be aware of the grams of caffeine in a cup of coffee. 

An 8 oz. cup of brewed coffee contains around 96 mg of caffeine. One shot of espresso contains 63.6 mg of caffeine. Instant coffee contains 62 mg of coffee per 8 oz. The amount of caffeine varies by drink, brewing method, coffee beans type, and several other factors.

How Much Caffeine Does An Average Cup Of Coffee Have?

An average cup of coffee contains roughly 95 mg of caffeine. This amount varies from drink to drink and also depends on the roast type and brewing inputs. For example, cold brew will have a different caffeine content than hot brew.

Types of Coffee Brews and Their Caffeine Content

Different brews will have different caffeine contents. For this portion, assume that we are using the same coffee brand and are using a standard cup size of 8 ounces. In the case of cold brew, we are using a 16 oz. amount as the cold brew is made in large servings.

Brewed Black Coffee (Hot)

An 8 oz. cup of black coffee contains around 96 mg of caffeine. According to Medical News Today, brewed coffee, in general, will have a caffeine content between 80 and 100 mg (for different coffee brands and roasts). The decaffeinated brew contains 2 mg of caffeine per 8 oz. cup, while drip coffee contains 65-120 mg of caffeine.

Black coffee

Espresso

Espresso is said to be the strongest type of coffee. When talking about espresso, we do not use cup sizes as nobody drinks an entire cup of espresso. Instead, we talk about shots. One shot of espresso (1 ounce) contains 63.6 mg of caffeine. 

Let’s evaluate that from a different perspective. Since one cup is around 8 ounces of coffee, one whole cup of espresso (226 g)  would contain 508.8 mg of caffeine. Now that is a large intake. Therefore, espresso is usually measured in shots and mixed with steamed milk, so no one actually consumes 508 mg of caffeine.

De caffeinated espresso has only 0.3 mg of caffeine per fluid ounce. This translates to only 2.4 mg of caffeine per mug (8 ounces).

Comparison of Caffeine Content Based on Shot Size
Shot Approximate Caffeine Content
Single Shot 29-100 mg
Double Shot 58-185 mg
Tripe Shot 70-225 mg
Decaffeinated Espresso (single shot) 8-10 mg

Instant Coffee

Instant coffee contains around 62 mg of caffeine per cup. Instant coffee has a lower caffeine content than typical brewed coffee. Brewed coffee has double the caffeine content of instant coffee. This drastic difference is because instant coffee is dried coffee, not dried beans. Instant coffee is made by crushing and grinding coffee beans to a fine powder and then adding water to it. Then it is preserved using several techniques. 

When we make instant coffee, we add more water to it. Since you’re adding water to coffee that already has a small bit of water in it, the caffeine concentration of instant coffee is reduced further. The mixture thus has more water than brewed coffee does.

Cold Brew

Cold-brew is not made in 8 oz. cups rather it is made in about 16 oz. of water. Cold brew is made by dipping ground coffee in cold water and storing it in the refrigerator for 10-24 hours. Keep in mind that it is different than pour-over-iced coffee. It is made in larger cups (16 oz.), and each 16 oz. cup contains about 200-280 mg of caffeine. Some brands like Dunkin’ Donuts serve cold brew with much higher caffeine content.

However, cold brews can have different caffeine contents depending on brewing time, grind size, and coffee bean type. If your cold brew sits in the fridge for 24 hours or more, it will contain more caffeine than if it sat for only 8 hours.

Also, if you used powdery or fine coffee grinds, then your cold brew will have more caffeine than if you used coarse grinds. Using more coffee grinds will also lead to a higher caffeine concentration. Some coffee types have more caffeine, so using them will also increase the caffeine content of your cold brew.

Remember that cold brew has a higher caffeine content than iced coffee. Iced coffee contains 165 mg of caffeine per 16 ounces.

Comparison of Caffeine Content Per 8 oz. Cup Based on Brewing Method

Comparison of Caffeine Content Per 8 oz. Cup Based on Brewing Method
Type of Coffee Caffeine Content per 8 oz. cup
Brewed Coffee 96 mg
Espresso 508 mg
Instant Coffee 62 mg
Cold Brew 100 mg

Caffeine Content Based on Drink Type

Coffee is made in so many different ways, and there are hundreds of drink options available. The caffeine content is different in all these kinds of drinks. Here we will talk about how much caffeine is in 8 oz. of coffee, depending on the drink type.

Americano

An 8 oz. cup of Americano contains 77-85 mg of caffeine (for 1 shot of espresso). Americano is basically hot water mixed with espresso. Therefore, the caffeine content in Americano depends on the shots of espresso used. If there are double or triple shots of espresso used, then you can expect the caffeine content to be equal to the caffeine in those shots. Since water has no caffeine, the caffeine content of an Americano is equal to the shot size. A double shot of espresso contains around 150 mg of caffeine, while a triple shot contains about 225 mg of caffeine.

A cup of americano coffee.

Latte

An 8 oz. Latte contains around 75-80 mg of caffeine for a single shot espresso shot used. The case is similar to an Americano; thus, a double shot and 8 oz. latte contain 150 mg of caffeine, and a triple shot contains around 210-230 mg of caffeine.

Cappuccino

Cappuccinos contain the same amount of caffeine as lattes since they are both made with espresso shots and milk. Since milk does not contain caffeine, the content depends only on the shot of espresso used.

Turkish Coffee

Turkish coffee contains more caffeine than regular brewed coffee. An 8 oz. cup of Turkish coffee contains around 190-215 mg of caffeine. Turkish coffee is so strong because it is unfiltered, and so it has coffee grounds in it while you are drinking it, and they keep on adding caffeine to the cup while it sits.

Mocha

Mochas are made using espresso and chocolate. Since chocolate contains caffeine as well, Mochas contain more caffeine than cappuccinos and lattes. One 8 oz. cup of mocha contains 100-120 mg of caffeine. Mochas are sweeter to drink because of the chocolate flavor but are actually stronger than a can of red bull (which contains 80 mg of caffeine)!

A cup of mocha with white chocolate next to it.

Turkish Coffee

Turkish coffee contains more caffeine than regular brewed coffee. An 8 oz. cup of Turkish coffee contains around 190-215 mg of caffeine. Turkish coffee is so strong because it is unfiltered, and so it has coffee grounds in it while you are drinking it, and they keep on adding caffeine to the cup while it sits.

Cafe Au Lait

A latte and café Au Lait have about the same amounts of caffeine. Even though they are both made by topping coffee with milk, a latte is made with espresso, while a Café Au Lait is made with brewed coffee. An 8 oz. cup of Café au Lait contains 80-100 mg of caffeine.

Flat White

An 8 oz. cup of Flat White contains around 80 mg of caffeine. A flat White has about the same amount of caffeine as a latte if the same number of espresso shots are used.

Red Eye

The Red Eye is a drink that combines drip coffee and espresso. Thus, it has a caffeine content of both. An 8 oz. cup of red-eye contains around 300 mg of caffeine. 

Black Eye

Put two shots of espresso in a red-eye drink and you will get a black eye. Since it contains two shots of espresso, the caffeine content may go as up as 375-400 mg.

Long Black

A long black is quite similar to an Americano but the espresso in it has more crema. It is much stronger than an Americano. It has a caffeine content of 154-170 mg per 8 oz. cup. 

Macchiato

A Macchiato is also a pretty strong drink since it combines espresso with just a few tablespoons of milk. A machiato with one shot espresso may contain 77-85 mg of caffeine. Macchiatos are typically made with one shot of espresso however their caffeine content may double if you add two shots. A macchiato made with two shots is usually called a long macchiato.

Long Machiatto

A long macchiato is similar to a regular macchiato but it has slightly more milk and more espresso. You could say its a taller macchiato. Thus, it contains 140-160 mg of caffeine per cup.

Breve

An 8 oz. cup of breve coffee contains around 75 mg of caffeine when only a single shot of espresso is used. It contains steamed milk and foam so the majority of the caffeine comes from the espresso.

Comparison of Caffeine Content by Type of Drink

Types of Coffee and Their Caffeine Content Per 8 oz. Cup

Drink Type

Caffeine Content (Per 8 oz.)

Americano

77-85 mg

Latte

75-80

Cappuccino

75-85 mg

Mocha

100-120 mg

Turkish Coffee

190-215 mg

Cafe Au Lait

80-100 mg

Flat White

80-85 mg

Red Eye

300 mg

Black Eye

375-400 mg.

Long Black

154-170 mg

Macchiato

140-160 mg 

Long Macchiato

77-85 mg 

Breve

75 mg

Caffeine Content Based on Type of Coffee Bean

The caffeine content varies from bean to bean. Robusta, Arabica, Liberica, etc., all will have varying amounts of caffeine. 

Arabica

Arabica coffee is generally more fruity and sweet in taste as compared to robusta coffee. The caffeine level in Arabica coffee is nearly half that of Robusta coffee! The caffeine content ranges from 1.2 to 1.5% (1.61 grams per 100 grams)per coffee bean.

Robusta

Robusta coffee beans have double the caffeine content of Arabica coffee. It ranges between 2.4 to 3% (2.26 grams per 100 grams) per coffee bean. Robusta coffee is characterized by a more bitter taste as compared to Arabica coffee.

Liberica

Liberica coffee has moderate amounts of caffeine per coffee bean. A bean of liberica contains around 1.2% caffeine (1.23 grams per 100 grams of caffeine). Despite the low caffeine level, Liberica coffee has a bold taste that can be overpowering for some.

Excelsa 

Excelsa coffee beans have very little caffeine. A bean of excelsa coffee contains only around 1% caffeine (1 gram per 100 grams). 

Comparison Of Caffeine Content Based On Type of Coffee Bean

Type of Coffee

Caffeine Content (%)

Caffeine Content (grams)

Arabica

1.5%

1.6 g

Robusta

2.4-3%

2.26 g

Liberica

1.2%

1.23 g

Excelsa

1%

1 g

Factors Affecting Caffeine Content

Now that we know the different variations in caffeine content based on bean type, brewing method, and drink type, let us see how caffeine content is affected.

Roasting Method

Some people believe that Dark roasts have lesser caffeine than light roasts, but that is not the case. Light roast coffee may be acidic, but it has almost the same caffeine as dark roast coffee. However, when we make coffee using a tablespoon of dark roast and a tablespoon of light roast coffee, darker roasted beans will yield lesser caffeine. This is because when beans are roasted, they lose their mass, so you will need to use more coffee beans. If you measure the beans by weight, then the same weight of light and dark roasts will yield the same amount of caffeine. It may look like a lot of dark roast beans in comparison to light roasts, but the dark roast beans are just lighter.

Brewing Method

We have already seen that cold brew coffee has more caffeine as compared to hot coffee. This is because making cold brew requires using more amounts of coffee. You cannot make a nice cup of cold brew unless you have put in lots of coffee in the water. If coffee is used less, the drink tastes watery. Thus, different brewing methods have different coffee to water requirements. Hot coffee can easily be made using half (or even lesser) amounts of coffee than cold brew because the heat used in brewing leads to a concentrated drink either way.

A cup with different types of coffee names written on it. Different types of coffee have different caffeine levels

Grind Size

The size of your grind also influences the caffeine content of a cup of coffee. If you grind the coffee beans to a fine powder, more surface area of the coffee will be exposed to water, and thus more extraction occurs, resulting in a more caffeinated drink. Turkish coffee is made using fine grinds, so it is more concentrated. For cold brews, extra course grinds are used. A coarse grind is usually used in a regular cup of drip coffee as it is easier to filter. 

Brewing Time

The amount of brewing time determines how much caffeine a cup of coffee contains. Allowing your coffee to brew for a longer time will mean more extraction occurs and thus more caffeine in your coffee. That is why cold brew is so concentrated as it is left to brew for 24-48 hours. Brewing hot coffee for a long time can cause a bitter cup of coffee.

Summary Of The Factors Affecting Caffeine Level In Coffee

Roasting Method

Equal weight of dark and light roasts will contain the same amount of caffeine. However, you will need a larger number of dark roasts as they have lost mass  during roasting.

Brewing Method

Some brewing methods require more coffee to be used (e.g. cold brew). Thus, they are more concentrated in caffeine.

Grind Size

The finer the grind, the more caffeine will be extracted.

Brewing Time

Brewing coffee for longer will result in a more caffeinated drink.

Conclusion

The caffeine content varies from drink to drink and coffee to coffee. If you want to know what is the caffeine content of coffee, then make sure you consult our caffeine comparison tables. Remember that caffeine content depends on several factors, so the amounts may vary. Hopefully, we have answered your question regarding the level of caffeine in a cup of coffee.

Bilal Ahmad

Bilal Ahmad

A coffee enthusiast on his way to exploring more about coffee while helping others solve all their Coffee Queries!