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Caffeine in Nitro Cold Brew vs Regular Coffee: A Look at The Differences

nitro cold brew vs coffee

Nitro Cold Brew and regular coffee have a lot in common. For starters, they both come from the coffee beans we all love. Secondly, they both contain caffeine, which we also love. The real question for lovers of caffeine who want a quick start to their day or pick me up in the afternoon is, which one has more caffeine and by how much?

That’s what we are here to find out. Does the velvety texture of a Nitro Cold Brew have more caffeine to help you out on a particularly draining day or would you be better off ordering a regular coffee and avoiding all the hype associated with fancier coffee beverages? Let’s find out! In short, nitro cold brew typically has more caffeine than regular coffee.

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A Quick Look at Caffeine Content: Nitro Cold Brew vs Regular Coffee

Nitro Cold Brew Regular Coffee
280 mg per 16 oz 188 mg per 16 oz (average)

How Much Caffeine in Nitro Cold Brew?

The most popular Nitro Cold Brew out there is Starbucks’ version. If you are a fan of stopping by your local Starbucks then you’ve most likely seen their keg of cold brew and nitro on the counter. This velvety coffee drink comes in all the normal cup sizes at the coffee chain, but for our comparison, we’re using the 16-ounce cup size. In this serving, you will find 280 mg of caffeine. For some, this may be considered a high amount. For those who have a high tolerance for caffeine, it could be a great drink to get their day started.

nitro cold brew coffee
Image Credit: DG FotoStock, Shutterstock

How Much Caffeine in Regular Coffee?

While it’s harder to determine the exact amount of caffeine in a regular 16-ounce cup of coffee, it’s safe to say the average is 188 mg. Regular coffee features roughly 11.8 mg of caffeine per ounce. The reason it’s so difficult to determine exact caffeine measurements is the brewing method. Most regular coffees are made by measuring the number of coffee grounds and water each time. If those measurements are off by even a little, the caffeine inside your cup could change slightly.

coffee in a white cup with coffee beans
Image Credit: Nile, Pixabay

Where Does the Caffeine Come From in Nitro Cold Brew & Regular Coffee?

Why does Nitro Cold Brew coffee have more caffeine? Simply put, because it is made differently. A Nitro Cold Brew is made using more coffee grounds than regular coffee. This instantly means more caffeine and a stronger flavor. The type of beans used can also impact things. Most of the time, Nitro Cold Brew is made using Arabica beans. These beans are known to contain less caffeine than their counterpart, Robusta. If you happen upon a Nitro Cold Brew made with Robusta beans it would have far more caffeine inside.

The caffeine in regular coffee mostly comes from the beans themselves. As we’ve already mentioned, Arabica beans are preferred by many people but don’t pack the same caffeine punch as Robusta beans. Like with the Nitro, however, these beans are the ones most commonly used. The amount of coffee used when brewing regular coffee matters as well. The more coffee used, the stronger the flavor and the more caffeine inside. This is why it’s difficult to determine the exact amount of caffeine regular coffee brewed at home contains due to measuring changes each time we use an automatic machine.

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The Bottom Line

As you can see, for those who love caffeine and want the best bang for their buck, a Nitro Cold Brew is the way to go. The 280 mg of caffeine inside is sure to put a little extra pep in your step. If you’re not a fan of all the coffee gimmicks and extras, however, don’t worry. Regular coffee and its 188 mg of caffeine in a 16-ounce still have the potential for a great caffeine boost throughout the day. Simply choose the drink you enjoy most.

Featured Image Credit: Left- Nitro Cold Brew (KanitChurem, Shutterstock) | Right – Coffee (PactoVisual, Pixabay)


Melissa Gunter

Melissa has been a fan of coffee since the first sip she stole from her Granny's cup when she was just a girl. Now, she spends each morning writing with a hot cup of coffee at her side. With a love of sweet and creamy bliss, Melissa and her daughter, Amber, stop by and try out every local coffee shop they see. Neither are afraid to try something new and have a long list of favorite coffee beverages they simply can't do without. When she's not freelance writing about her 2 passions, coffee, and pets, Melissa spends her time with her husband, 2 kids, and 5 fur babies. She also loves diving into the fiction world under her pen name, Rena Marin. If she isn't at the laptop or with the family, Melissa is out enjoying the mountains of East Tennessee she calls home.

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