Caffeine in Foods & Beverages

Caffeine is found in a wide variety of sources.  On this page, we provide tables that reveal how much caffeine is in a number of foods and beverages.

Table 1: Caffeine Content of Coffee and Tea

Preparation Method

Mg. of Caffeine

COFFEE (6oz cup, arabica coffee) Filter drip 130-180  (average 150)
Percolated 75-150
Espresso (1.5 to 2oz.) 100
Instant 50 –130
Decaffeinated 2- 6 (?)
Type of Leaf Mg. of Caffeine
TEA (6oz cup, 3 minute brew) Green tea 10 – 15
Orange tea 25
Black tea 50
Brand Mg. of Caffeine
BOTTLED ICED TEA (16 oz bottle) Snapple iced tea (all varieties) 42
Lipton iced tea (all varieties) 18-40
Nestea sweetened iced tea 34
Arizona iced tea (all varieties) 15-30

Most people think that an espresso has more caffeine than an ordinary cup of coffee. This is a myth.  While espresso has much more caffeine per ounce, it is usually served in cups of between 1.5 and 2 oz.  Because regular filter drip coffee usually is served in cups that are 6 oz or larger, the amount of caffeine in an espresso is actually smaller than the amount in a cup of regular filter drip coffee.

The reason for the question mark in the decaf line is that sometimes so-called “decaffeinated” coffees aren’t really as caffeine free as they pretend to be.   However, instant decaffeinated coffees like Sanka are reliable and only contain a few milligrams of caffeine at most.

NOTE: Remember that the caffeine content of robusta beans (the inferior kind Starbucks and other low quality coffees use) is twice that of arabica beans.

Table 2: Caffeine Content of Soft Drinks

Most soft drinks contain about 40 mg of caffeine in a 12 oz serving.  Note, however, that Coca Cola Classic contains only 34 mg, while Diet Coke contains 46 mg.  If you are drinking a few servings, or if you are unusually sensitive to caffeine, this small difference may matter.  Also note that Sunkist orange soda contains 42 mg of caffeine in a 12 oz serving, while Minute Maid orange soda has no caffeine.  This underscores the importance of checking the labels of sodas, all of which now state the amount of caffeine contained in the bottle or can.

Table 3: Caffeine Content of ”Energy-Drinks”

“Energy-drinks” are soft drinks that are usually carbonated and that contain more caffeine than traditional caffeinated sodas.  However, the caffeine content of these drinks is not particularly large.  The fact is that energy-drinks deliver far less caffeine per ounce than coffee.  Coffee contains between 25mg and 50mg of caffeine per ounce, while the popular energy-drinks typically contain only about 10mg of caffeine per ounce.   In other words, an 8oz energy-drink has about 80mg of caffeine, which is to say, about half of what a 60z cup of Arabica coffee delivers or a quarter of what a 60z cup of Robusta coffee delivers.

Table 4: Caffeine Content of Chocolate Candy, Drinks, and Miscellaneous Foods

Chocolate contains two substances that can give you a boost:  caffeine and theobromine, caffeine’s chemical cousin.  Theobromine’s effects are very similar to caffeine’s, but theobromine is much weaker per milligram than caffeine.  However, it is found in much larger amounts in chocolate than caffeine.  Although no one is certain, most scientists believe that the total effect of caffeine and theobromine in chocolate is about twice that of the caffeine alone.   Therefore, in evaluating the lift you will get from chocolate, approximately double the amount of caffeine that is given in this table.   As you can see, except for dark chocolate, the amount of caffeine in most candy is relatively small.

Hershey's Special Dark Miniatures

Brand Name

Serving Size

Milligrams Per Serving

Hershey’s Milk chocolate bar 1.55 oz (43g)

10

Hershey’s Milk chocolate bar with almonds 1.45 oz (41g)

6

Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Bar 1.45 oz (41g)

31

Perugina Milk Chocolate Bar with Cappuccino Filling  (1/3 bar) 1.2 oz (33g)

24

M&M’s 1.75 oz (49g)

15

Rolo Carmels in milk chocolate 1.93 oz(54g)

4

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups 1.60 oz(45g)

4

Mr. Goodbar chocolate bar 1.75 oz(49g)

5

Hershey’s Kisses 1.55 oz(43g) – 8 kisses

11

Coffee Nips (hard candy) Two pieces

6

Kit Kat wafer bar 1.50 oz(42g)

6

 

CHOCOLATE PRODUCT Caffeine Content in Mg.
Hot chocolate (mix, 6oz) 10
Chocolate milk (6oz) 4
Milk chocolate(28 g) 6
Dark chocolate (28 g) 20
Baking chocolate (28 g) 35
MISCELLANEOUS FOODS
Cocoa Puffs breakfast cereal (4 oz) 2
Penguin Mints (1 mint) 7
Dannon coffee yogurt (8 oz) 45
Dannon Light Cappucino Yogurt (8oz) <1
Yoplait Café Au Lait Yogurt (6oz) 5
Stonyfield Farm Cappuccino Yogurt (8 oz) 0
Haagen Dazs coffee ice cream (1 cup) 58
Haagen Dazs Coffee Frozen Yogurt, fat-free (1 cup) 40
Starbucks Coffee Ice Cream, assorted flavors (1 cup) 40-60
Ben & Jerry’s No Fat Coffee Fudge Frozen Yogurt (1 cup) 85

Table 5: Caffeinated Waters

BRAND SERVING SIZE CAFFEINE in MG.
Java Water ½ litre (16.9 ounces) 125 mg
Krank 20 ½ litre (16.9 ounces) 100 mg
Aqua Blast ½ litre (16.9 ounces) 90 mg
Water Joe ½ litre (16.9 ounces) 60 to 70 mg
Aqua Java ½ litre (16.9 ounces) 50 to 60 mg