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Top 15 Popular Soda Brands: How Much Caffeine?

variety of bottled sodas

Many people know that sodas like Coca Cola and Pepsi contain caffeine, but perhaps fewer people are aware that the likes of Mountain Dew actually contain more caffeine per 100ml. Whether you’re looking for a soda that packs a little extra caffeine punch or you want to monitor the amount of caffeine your kids are drinking on a daily basis, it pays to know how much is in some of the most popular drinks.

Below, we have put together a list of 15 of the most popular sodas, and their caffeine content, and have included two of the most popular energy drinks for comparison’s sake.

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The 15 Most Popular Soda Brands:

The actual caffeine content in drinks can vary by locale as well as the specific flavor or style of drink purchased, but we have used the traditional and most common variants of each brand below.

1. Coca Cola

two cans of coke zero
Image Credit: Chenyu Guan, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 8.5mg
Calories (per 100ml): 37
Sugar (per 100ml): 9.5g

Coca-Cola, originally made as a drink for those looking to abstain from alcohol, remains, by far, the most popular soda in the world. The company claims that it sells nearly 2 billion servings of its drinks every single day, although this does include Diet Coke and other Coca Cola brands. A can is usually 335ml, which means that it contains around 28.5mg of caffeine.


2. Diet Coke

hand holding a can of diet coke
Image Credit: NeONBRAND, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 12.5mg
Calories (per 100ml): 1
Sugar (per 100ml): 0g

While it might not have been surprising to learn that Coca-Cola contains caffeine, what might be surprising is the fact that Diet Coke contains nearly 50% more caffeine per serving. A can contains 46mg of caffeine. Diet Coke does not contain sugar, but it does use stevia and other sweeteners to replicate the sweet flavor and there are trace calories to be found in this diet soda.


3. Pepsi

cans of pepsi
Image Credit: Ja San Miguel, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 10.7mg
Calories (per 100ml): 42
Sugar (per 100ml): 10.6g

Pepsi has long been second-best to Coca-Cola, in terms of sales, but for those that are looking for a traditional non-diet soda that packs more of a caffeinated punch, it actually has the upper hand over Coca-Cola, thanks to its 10.7mg of caffeine per 100ml.


4. Diet Pepsi

can of diet pepsi on table
Image credit: Andrew George, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 9.86mg
Calories (per 100ml): 0
Sugar (per 100ml): 0g

While Coca-Cola and Diet Coke took the approach of adding more caffeine to their diet drinks than their standard variants, Pepsi went the other way. Diet Pepsi includes only 9.86mg of caffeine per 100ml, which is still more caffeine than in Coca-Cola but less than in the standard Pepsi drink.


5. Dr. Pepper

6 bottles of dr. pepper soda
Image Credit: RJA1988, Pixabay
Caffeine (per 100ml): 11.83mg
Calories (per 100ml): 29
Sugar (per 100ml): 7.2g

Dr. Pepper is owned by Keurig Dr. Pepper, with Keurig being famous for their pod-based k-cup coffee machines, so you might expect this fruit-flavored beverage to have a high caffeine content. Compared to other sodas, it is indeed highly caffeinated with just over 11.8mg of caffeine per 100ml. However, it is lower in calories and sugar than other standard sodas.


6. Mountain Dew

Mountain Dew can
Image Credit: Anil Xavier, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 15.2mg
Calories (per 100ml): 50
Sugar (per 100ml): 12.3g

Manufactured by Pepsi, Mountain Dew is a citrus-flavored soda that is high in caffeine, with 15.2mg per 100ml. It is also higher in sugar and calories than its biggest competitors. Although it is high in caffeine, Mountain Dew is not considered an energy drink but still a soda.


7. Sprite

sprite
Image Credit: Tadeo Moreno, Pixabay
Caffeine (per 100ml): 0mg
Calories (per 100ml): 41
Sugar (per 100ml): 9.5g

Sprite is a carbonated lemon and lime flavor drink that is reasonably high in sugar and calories but that contains no caffeine whatsoever, so while it might not be suitable for those on a diet, it is a good choice for people looking to avoid caffeine altogether.


8. Fanta

a case of bottled Fanta
Image Credit: Renato Trentin, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 0mg
Calories (per 100ml): 19
Sugar (per 100ml): 6.9g

Fanta is a fruit-flavored carbonated drink that is manufactured and supplied by Coca-Cola. It does not contain any caffeine and is comparatively low in sugar and calories. The original Fanta is orange-flavored but there is a seemingly ever-increasing roster of flavors available for purchase. The figures given are for the orange drink and might differ for other flavors.


9. Sunkist

bottles of Sunkist Orange Soda

Caffeine (per 100ml): 5.35mg
Calories (per 100ml): 45
Sugar (per 100ml): 11.8g

Sunkist is owned by Keurig Dr. Pepper and is one of surprisingly few citrus-flavored soda drinks that do actually contain caffeine, although the amount is approximately half that of Cokes and other sodas. Expect to find 5.35mg of caffeine per 100ml and a high amount of sugar in this fizzy drink.


10. Sierra Mist

Sierra Mist Lemon Lime Soda

Caffeine (per 100ml): 0mg
Calories (per 100ml): 47
Sugar (per 100ml): 8.17g

Sierra Mist is a lemon and lime carbonated drink from PepsiCo. It is a caffeine-free beverage which means that there is no caffeine whatsoever. However, as is common with citrus drinks it does contain calories aplenty.


11. 7-Up

7UP Lemon Lime Soda

Caffeine (per 100ml): 0mg
Calories (per 100ml): 44
Sugar (per 100ml): 11g

7-up is a carbonated lemon and lime caffeine-free drink that is owned and sold by Keurig Dr Pepper. It contains no caffeine but is quite high in sugar and calories. When 7-up was first introduced, it was known as Bib-Label Lithiated Lemon-Lime Soda and was originally sold as an anti-depressant, rather than as a soft drink.


12. Moxie

Moxie Original Elixir Made with Cane Sugar

Caffeine (per 100ml): 6.76mg
Calories (per 100ml): 42
Sugar (per 100ml): 10.4g

Moxie was one of the first mass-produced sodas in the US and while it hasn’t retained its popularity over the years, it could be a good choice for those looking for a carbonated, moderately caffeinated alternative to other sodas. It was first sold as a medicine and has a similar taste to root beer. It only has 6.76mg of caffeine per 100ml of Moxie.


13. A&W Root Beer

A&W Root Beer

Caffeine (per 100ml): 0mg
Calories (per 100ml): 43
Sugar (per 100ml): 12.8g

Launched in 1919, A&W Root Beer is described as having a mellow and creamy taste. It is caffeine-free and alcohol-free. It uses real vanilla to achieve its flavor and it has 43 calories per 100ml serving, as well as 12.8g of sugar, although there are diet and zero versions of the popular root beer available to buy.


14. Red Bull

red bull energy drink
Image Credit: Jan Kopřiva, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 30mg
Calories (per 100ml): 45
Sugar (per 100ml): 10g

It may not be the original energy drink, an honor which arguably belongs to Jolt Cola launched in 1985, but it is now the most popular caffeinated energy drink in the world. It is very high in caffeine, at least when compared to traditional sodas, with 30mg of caffeine per 100ml of Red Bull. It also contains 45 calories and 10g of sugar per 100ml.


15. Monster

monster energy drink white
Image Credit: NeONBRAND, Unsplash
Caffeine (per 100ml): 36mg
Calories (per 100ml): 42
Sugar (per 100ml): 11g

Although Red Bull comes under scrutiny for its high caffeine content, other energy drinks are available and many of them actually have a higher caffeine concentration. Monster is likely the second most popular and has 20% more caffeine with 36mg per 100ml. It also tends to come in a much larger can, which means that the consumer gets nearly double the amount of caffeine from a single serving. Calorie and sugar content are roughly equivalent to Red Bull, at 42 and 11g per 100ml respectively.


Does Soda Have Caffeine?

While most people are aware that Coca-Cola contains caffeine, it certainly isn’t the only soda to give a caffeinated kick. Drinks like Mountain Dew, in fact, have higher caffeine content, and although the caffeine is likely added synthetically nowadays, it was a natural ingredient in the Cola nuts that were used to give the drink its flavor. Consumers that are caffeine sensitive or looking to avoid caffeine should check the ingredients of their sodas before opening the can and should definitely avoid energy drinks.

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Conclusion

Although Coca-Cola does have a reasonable amount of caffeine, this level is dwarfed by the likes of Mountain Dew’s caffeine content, and even Cola’s own sugarless variant, Diet Coke. Those looking to avoid caffeine are better looking at citrus-based drinks, although not Mountain Dew, and some root beers. While those looking for a soda with plenty of caffeine should consider a Diet Coke or Mountain Dew, assuming that they want to avoid energy drinks like Red Bull and Monster.


Featured Image Credit: Amanda Shepherd, Unsplash

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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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