How much caffeine is in coffee?

How much caffeine is in coffee?

. 4 min read

Many people across the globe rely on a piping hot cup of coffee to jump start their day. Some won’t even speak to their family, friends or colleagues before they’ve  had their morning caffeine fix.

The perfect cup of coffee can be instrumental in setting the tone for the entire day, but exactly how much caffeine is in a single cup of coffee? The answer widely varies based on several factors including the type of coffee bean, and roast..

What is caffeine?

Caffeine is a natural stimulant found in tea leaves and coffee beans that affect the central nervous system by promoting arousal, and increasing focus and alertness.
On average, it takes about 30 minutes before feeling the onset of its effects, and about an hour for it to reach its maximum potential. The overall stimulatory effects of caffeine lasts for a total of  3 to 5 hours.

How Much Caffeine Is In a Cup of Coffee?

The answer is more in-depth than you may think. Again, several factors must be taken into consideration when calculating the amount of caffeine in the average 8 ounce cup of coffee, such as the amount of coffee used, type of bean, type of roast, type of coffee, and brewing method.

Factors That Affect the Amount of Caffeine in Coffee

Type of coffee bean

There is a large assortment of coffee beans from all over the world, all naturally containing varying amounts of caffeine. However, the two most popular varieties globally are the Arabica and Robusta coffee beans.

Arabica Coffee Beans

The majority of the world’s coffee is made with Arabica beans. They have about half the caffeine of Robusta beans and are known for their mild, naturally sweet, and mellow flavor.

Robusta Coffee Beans

These coffee beans have almost twice the amount of caffeine as Arabica beans. The higher caffeine content in Robusta coffee beans is responsible for its less-refined, nuttier, and bitter taste. ****

coffee beans during the roasting process

Type of Roast

There are four different roasts categories ranging from light to dark, and the amount of caffeine varies significantly between them. Generally speaking, lighter roasts have a higher concentration of caffeine than darker roasts.
This is because the longer coffee beans are roasted, the more caffeine is burned off, resulting in a bolder flavor, but less caffeine.

Light Roasts

Retain most of the caffeine and original flavors of the coffee bean.

Medium Roasts

More body, balanced acidity, and aroma. Often referred to as American roast. For a medium roast, try Cafédirect Fairtrade Smooth Roast Ground Coffee.

Medium-Dark Roasts

This full-bodied roast is darker and richer in color. There is some oil on the surface as a natural reaction to oxidation during roasting.

Dark Roasts

These oily, dark brown beans produce a smooth, and mellow flavor. This would be something like Cafédirect Fairtrade Intense Roast Ground

coffee beans in a ceramic mug

Type of Coffee

Regular Coffee

The average amount of caffeine in an 8oz brewed cup of Robusta coffee contains 184mg-264mg of caffeine, while an 8oz cup of Arabica coffee contains between 100mg-172mg of caffeine.

Decaffeinated Coffee

Despite its name, decaf coffee still contains a small amount of caffeine, between 3mg-7mg per 8oz cup. For a great tasting decaf coffee, try Clipper Fairtrade Organic Decaf Arabica Coffee.


This drink is made by forcing a small amount of hot water through finely-ground coffee beans, producing the highest amount of caffeine in the smallest serving. A 1oz shot of espresso contains between 40mg-60mg of caffeine.

Instant Coffee

Instant coffee is made from brewed coffee that has been freeze-dried or dehydrated. Just add hot water and stir. Coffee in this form is generally less caffeinated than regular fresh-ground coffee beans, containing between 30mg-90mg per 8oz cup. Our favourite instant coffee is Nescafé Azera Americano Instant Coffee with Ground Beans.

Type of Brewing

Regular Brew

Brewed coffee can be made using a percolator, French press, or filter. It is made by pouring hot water over ground coffee, and the amount of caffeine can vary based on the method chosen. The average cup contains between 70mg-140mg of caffeine per 8oz.

Cold Brew

This method of brewing is a far cry from your standard iced coffee. It is slowly steeped over 8-24 hours, producing an iced coffee with a smoother, less acidic taste. Each 8oz cup of cold brew contains between 100mg-160mg of caffeine per 8oz.


The word espresso is used to describe a type of coffee as well as to describe a style of brewing. Espresso is made when finely ground coffee is filtered through high-pressured, hot water into a small, concentrated shot of coffee.

Wrap Up

Coffee is a popular, widely consumed, natural stimulant available in a variety of forms, flavors, and strengths.  So, it should come as no surprise that several things need to be taken into consideration when determining how much caffeine is in a cup of coffee. The caffeine content is directly affected by the type of coffee bean, style of roast, preparation, and serving size.

The lighter the roast, the higher the concentration of caffeine, and although it comes in the smallest serving of all the options listed, a 1oz shot of espresso has the highest concentration of caffeine per serving, making it a great option for a quick mid-day pick me up.

We sell a wide selection of coffee at Bother and we're sure we have a coffee that you will love - check out our coffee range here!