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How Much Caffeine In McCafe Drinks?

mccafe coffee drinks

McCafe is the coffee shop and café arm of fast-food giant, McDonald’s. It is especially known for its coffee, coffee-based drinks, and other beverages. As well as the drinks that it serves in McDonald’s restaurants, McCafe is also now available to buy as beans, ground coffee, and as K-cup pods.

Depending on factors such as time of year, existing offers, and a constantly changing selection of drink options, there can be 20 or more different McCafe drinks in any McDonald’s store and their caffeine content ranges from the 8mg found in a 12oz decaffeinated brewed coffee to the 109mg in a 12oz brewed coffee.

Although McCafe tends to be more popular in other parts of the world, it is growing in popularity in the US, and you can find typical McCafe caffeine content for their drinks in the article below.

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Caffeine In McCafe Coffee

The actual amount of caffeine in a McCafe coffee varies greatly. The biggest determining factor is the type of coffee or espresso-based drink chosen as well as the size of the serving. It is possible, although not usually advertised on the menu, to have an extra shot of espresso added to your drink at a McDonald’s restaurant, too. And, if all else fails, you can always buy a separate espresso shot, or even a double, and add it to your favorite cinnamon cookie latte.

mccafe paper coffee cup on table
Image Credit: Angelina Yan, Unsplash

In-Store McCafe Drinks

There is a huge variety of McCafe espresso-based drinks available. However, for the most part, different flavors of the same basic drink have the same caffeine content. For example, a caramel latte and even an iced latte have the same caffeine amounts as a standard latte. It is also worth noting that McDonald’s does not publish the caffeine content of drinks themselves, stating that “the FDA does not require publishing caffeine levels.” The most popular McCafe drinks available in store have the following caffeine content.

Brewed Coffee (12oz): 109mg
Decaffeinated Brewed Coffee (12oz): 8mg
Espresso (single): 71mg
Americano: 71mg
Latte: 71mg
Cappuccino: 71mg
Mocha: 86mg
Mocha Frappe: 100mg
Frappe: 75mg
Iced Sweet Tea: 38mg
Hot Tea: 42mg
Hot Chocolate: 7mg

Caffeine In McCafe K-Cup And Home Coffees

As McCafe drinks have become more popular, the company has made its Arabica beans available in bean, ground coffee, and k-cup format. Again, McDonald’s does not publish the caffeine content, but the beans and ground coffee should have similar caffeine levels to the drinks found in store. When it comes to McCafe k-cups, caffeine content is approximately 100mg of caffeine per cup. Compared to other k-cup servings, this is about average.

McCafe: 100mg
Donut Shop: 120mg
Caribou Coffee: 120mg
Café Bustelo: 80mg
Java House: 160mg

McCafe Arabica Beans

McDonald’s says that all its coffees and espressos are made using 100% Arabica beans and that all beans come from Rainforest Alliance Certified farms. Arabica beans have high sugar content, so they give a sweet tasting coffee that is not as harsh as Robusta and some other beans. They are also known to be high in antioxidants. The smooth taste of the Arabica bean is likely why McCafe choose this style of bean, therefore appealing to a large portion of the population.

What Are K Cups?

Coffee pod machines have become popular since their first introduction and the subsequent patent expiry. Although Keurig Cups, or k-cups, remain one of the most popular pod systems, there are a great many to choose from. Although the sizes vary, and k cups cannot, for example, be used in all pod machines, all pods aim to offer convenience and uniformity, as well as great tasting coffee. They are designed to be quick and easy to use, with minimal fuss and clean up although purists say that they do not provide the same nuances and subtleties as brewing coffee manually.

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Conclusion

McCafe is the branch of McDonald’s responsible for making and supplying coffee and other hot beverages to its customers. McDonald’s themselves do not publish the caffeine content of their drinks, so there will be some variance between the figures listed above and those that you might get from a cup of coffee in your local McCafe outlet (typically found within McDonald’s’ stores), but you can expect between 70mg and 110mg of caffeine in a standard 12oz cup, or 100mg of caffeine from a single McCafe k cup serving.

Looking for more caffeine content-related read? Try: How Much Caffeine In Black Insomnia Coffee?


Featured Image Credit: parthshah000, Pixabay

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Kate MacDonnell

Kate is a lifelong coffee enthusiast and homebrewer who enjoys writing for coffee websites and sampling every kind of coffee known to man. She’s tried unusual coffees from all over the world and owns an unhealthy amount of coffee gear.

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