Many people choose a cup of cappuccino as a pick-me-up for its caffeine. Caffeine is a known energizer that can boost productivity and stamina for a short time.
But how much caffeine does a regular cup of cappuccino contain?
Cappuccinos usually contain 150 mg (0.0052 oz) of caffeine for every 16 ounces (473 ml). This size is the equivalent of a Grande size at Starbucks. However, the caffeine content may change depending on the ingredients, roasting technique, and other factors.
In this article, I’ll go over how much caffeine is in a cappuccino, what ingredients make it caffeinated, and what other customizations you can do to alter this amount.
How much caffeine is in a tall (12-ounce) cappuccino?
There is 75 mg (0.003 oz) of caffeine in your standard tall-sized Starbucks cappuccino.
While this may seem like a significant amount, it’s actually less than you would find in most regular cups of coffee.
The average cup of freshly brewed coffee has about 90 to 95 mg (0.0032 to 0.0033 oz) of caffeine per every 8 ounces (237 ml) serving.
Thus, a tall cappuccino has about a quarter of that amount less.
How much caffeine is in the other drink sizes offered by Starbucks?
On average, a cappuccino from Starbucks will have anywhere from about 75 mg (0.003 oz) to 150 mg (0.0052 oz) of caffeine, depending on the drink size.
Starbucks offers a range of sizes for their cappuccinos. You can find the sizes offered by Starbucks and their respective caffeine measurements in the table below:
|Cappuccino size||Caffeine content|
|Short (8 oz or 237 ml)||75 mg (0.003 oz)|
|Tall (12 oz or 355 ml)||75 mg (0.003 oz)|
|Grande (16 oz or 473 ml)||150 mg (0.0052 oz)|
|Venti (24 oz or 710 ml)||150 mg (0.0052 oz)|
If you order a short or tall drink, you will consume less caffeine than you would in a standard cup of coffee.
However, if you go up to a grande or a venti size, you will consume almost double the amount of caffeine.
What ingredients are in a cappuccino?
A cappuccino is a fairly simple drink containing only two ingredients:
Here are the steps to make a cappuccino:
- Brew some fresh espresso and add it to the cup in which you will serve the cappuccino.
- Add steamed milk on top.
- Add a foam layer, giving the cappuccino a light, airy feel.
- You can add some cacao powder or ground cinnamon on top.
However, remember that no two cappuccinos will ever be prepared the same or contain identical ingredients.
Most cappuccinos contain 1/3rd of each ingredient, but some may change the portions.
While some cappuccinos have more milk and less espresso, some will include the opposite.
The ones with more espresso than milk are known as dry cappuccinos because of their lower milk content.
If you are curious about more differences between regular cappuccinos and dry cappuccinos, check out my article on wet vs. dry cappuccinos.
What cappuccino ingredients contain caffeine?
Like most coffee-based drinks, all of the caffeine in a cappuccino comes directly from the espresso. There is no caffeine in the milk, whether steamed or foamed.
Espresso is the stronger and more concentrated version of coffee; thus, it contains more caffeine per ounce than regular coffee:
Espresso isn’t watered down in the same way coffee is. This different brewing process means that a little shot of espresso can have almost the same amount of caffeine as an entire cup of coffee.
Can I order a cappuccino without caffeine?
If you’re hoping to enjoy a delicious cappuccino but do not want the full energy boost of caffeine, then you’re in luck.
Starbucks offers decaffeinated versions of their cappuccino that keep the same unique flavors.
They make their regular cappuccinos with their signature espresso roast. Yet, you can order your drink with the signature roast substituted with decaf espresso.
Decaf coffee has over 97% of its caffeine content removed. Thus, even if you order a decaf version of the cappuccino, it will still contain some amount of caffeine.
There is no way to get a completely caffeine-free cappuccino, just one with reduced caffeine.
While you cannot get a cappuccino without all the caffeine, there are still different levels of caffeine that you can choose from.
The available espresso inclusions include the following:
- Signature Espresso Roast (their regularly used espresso)
- 1/2 Decaf Espresso Roast
- 1/3 Decaf Espresso Roast
- 2/3 Decaf Espresso Roast
- Decaf Espresso Roast
- Blonde Espresso Roast
Each type of espresso has a different amount of caffeine, whether entirely halved or divided into thirds.
The only options with regular amounts of caffeine are the signature and Blonde roasts.
These options are available on their menu and offered as current substitutions.
You just need to let your barista know that you would like a different type of espresso or change the order yourself on the Starbucks mobile order app.
What other customizations can I do for a cappuccino?
In addition to changing the type of espresso and the amount of caffeine present in your cappuccino, there are multiple customizations you can make to the drink.
Because the main component is milk, you can change the type of milk used. There are several dairy and non-dairy options available, including the following:
- Nonfat milk
- 2% fat milk
- Half & half
- Almond milk
- Soy milk
- Oat milk
- Coconut milk
Along with these choices, you can also add different syrups for new flavor combinations.
You can also add toppings such as whip cream or chocolate drizzle for a sweeter treat.
However, making these changes will increase the overall sugar content of the drink.
If you want to order like a regular at Starbucks, you can read this in-depth guide to learn about all the customizations possible!
Is a cappuccino stronger than a coffee?
Cappuccinos are not stronger than coffee. A cappuccino with one espresso shot will contain 68 – 70 mg (0.0024 – 0.0025 oz) of caffeine, while a regular cup of coffee contains 90 to 95 mg (0.0032 to 0.0033 oz) of caffeine.
However, most cappuccinos have only a single shot of espresso.
With espresso being a stronger brew than regular coffee, you can increase the amount of caffeine in your cappuccino by asking for an extra shot of espresso.
Just one extra shot will double the amount of caffeine in your cappuccino.
Are there any other cappuccinos offered at Starbucks?
Currently, Starbucks only offers their regular cappuccino on their menu.
However, you can order a Blonde cappuccino by substituting the signature espresso roast for the Blonde espresso roast instead.
The Blonde Espresso is Starbucks’s blend of light roasted coffee that tastes slightly sweeter.
Additionally, Blonde espresso changes the caffeine amount in a cappuccino despite being light roasted.
When the blonde espresso beans are brewed as espresso, they’ll have more caffeine than the regular espresso roast.
To order this delicious and slightly sweeter cappuccino, ask your barista to use the Blonde espresso roast instead of the signature espresso roast.
What drinks are similar to cappuccinos?
There are various options if you are craving a caffeinated drink with the same flavor as a cappuccino. Here are some drinks similar to cappuccinos:
- Caffè Misto: A delicious drink that combines creamy milk and fresh coffee.
- Caffè latte: Similar to the cappuccino, this drink mixes espresso and milk for a cohesive and smooth treat.
- Espresso con Panna: This drink uses whipped cream to sweeten the espresso instead of regular steamed milk.
- Flat white: Made with steamed milk and espresso, this drink has more caffeine due to the extra espresso.
- Espresso Frappuccino: This icy drink uses espresso and coffee to provide a quick caffeine boost.
Each of these drinks offers the same strong flavors the cappuccino provides as their main components are fresh coffee or their signature espresso.
Some of these drinks will have more or less caffeine depending on the type of coffee, substitutions, and sizes selected when ordering.
Is a Frappuccino a type of cappuccino?
Many believe that a Frappuccino and cappuccino are identical drinks.
While the two drinks share very similar names and some of the same ingredients, they are still very different.
Frappuccinos are Starbucks’s own unique blended iced coffee drink that uses ingredients like:
- Flavor syrup
- Whipped cream
Unlike cappuccinos, these drinks are also served cold instead of hot. They have a thick texture that resembles a blended smoothie.
However, Frappuccinos typically have the same amount of caffeine as a cappuccino but a lot more sugar.
The amount of caffeine in the average Frappuccino is 60 – 185 mg (0.0021 – 0.0065 oz), depending on the type and size of the drink.
Starbucks also offers some non-coffee Frappuccinos, so those don’t contain much caffeine.
However, remember that some of them use matcha or dark chocolate, which contain a little bit of caffeine.
To learn more about the critical differences between these two drinks, check out my article on Frappuccinos vs. cappuccinos.
Cappuccinos do contain caffeine, but you can order them with different levels of caffeine.
How much caffeine is in your cappuccino depends on various factors, including size, substitutions, and the type of espresso.
If you are trying to avoid caffeine entirely, there are also many different drinks that have a similar taste to them available.
Or, you can swap out the regular espresso for a significantly decaffeinated one.