Coffee didn't earn the title of the being the most popular beverage in the world for taste alone. Let's be honest here. Caffeine has a lot to do with coffee's universal popularity.
The Science Behind Strong Coffee's High in Caffeine
Caffeine by Bean
Related Article: Difference Between Robusta and Arabica Beans
Caffeine by Roast
We just covered how different species of coffee beans can have more caffeine than others. Another factor that affects caffeine content is the roasting. The relationship between roast and caffeine levels has been discussed extensively in coffee circles around the world.
Most people assume a strong dark roasted coffee bean will have more caffeine than a light one. Thinking this is totally understandable but still wrong. In fact, it's the light roasted coffees that have more caffeine assuming equal weight. The reason for this is that light roasted coffee beans are roasted for a shorter period of time, and therefore, less caffeine is lost in the roasting process. Dark roasted beans are subjected to heat longer than light roasted beans, and thus will generally be less caffeinated.
Best High Caffeine Coffees of 2020
These high caffeine coffees were selected based on a combination of caffeine content AND taste.
1. Megaton Coffee
Our top pick for best and strongest high caffeine coffees goes to Megaton Coffee. While this coffee may not have as much caffeine as some of the others on this list, it was chosen for its incredibly rich and complex flavor in addition to having the high caffeine content. I've personally tried this coffee before and it helped redefine my perspective on high caffeine coffee and its potential. The caffeine hit me with what felt like a very clean and natural energy while delivering a quality cup of brew that rivals what you'd find at an upscale coffeehouse. Megaton Coffee uses an proprietary mix of both Robusta and Arabica which is how they're able to achieve such a finely-tuned brew. If you observe their branding, you'll also notice they aren't trying to be the world's most “dangerously caffeinated” coffee. Instead, they market themselves as a performance coffee by leveraging the natural effects of caffeine. Their all-natural coffee contains no chemicals which is hugely appreciated especially when shopping for coffee in this space. All orders are roasted within 24 hours.
Caffeine: 300mg – 345mg / 12 ozCoffee Bean Type: Robust & Arabica
Roast: Dark Roast
2. Bones Coffee High Voltage Brew
Caffeine: Not specified, claims to have 2x the amount of caffeine of a normal cup of coffee
Coffee Bean Type: Not Listed
Roast: Medium Roast
Caffeine: 728 mg / 12 ozCoffee Bean Type: Not Listed
Roast: Dark Roast
4. Killer Coffee
Killer Coffee, one of Australia's most caffeinated brews, has somehow been able to achieve very high levels of caffeine by using only Arabica beans. That's fascinating given this particular bean's lower caffeine content. Nonetheless, Killer Coffee has earned a strong reputation in the high caffeine coffee space which is no walk in the park. Their tagline of “Bitter-Free, yet strong enough to wake the dead” is very fitting.
Caffeine: 645 mg / 12 oz
Coffee Bean Type: Arabica
Roast: Dark Roast
5. Shock Coffee
Shock Coffee's signature line of award-winning high caffeine coffees rounds out our list. This coffee has been featured for its naturally-caffeinated brew that captures a rich flavor that's not too bitter, not too weak, but just right. Shock Coffee has perfected the taste to caffeine ratio to produce a deliciously charged brew that's also attractively priced as well.
Caffeine: Claims to have up to 50% more caffeine than your average coffeeCoffee Bean Type: Robust & Arabica
Roast: Medium Dark Roast
Bonus Recommendation – High Caffeine Coffee
How much Caffeine is Too Much?
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends 400 mg of caffeine for day for the average person. Of course, this amount will vary due to factors such as body weight and composition. If you'd like to know your specific caffeine limit, check out this nifty caffeine calculator. The bottom line is you should use common sense when consuming large amounts of caffeine. Know your limits as well as your body. If you're twitching uncontrollably or simply feel like you're too wired, then put down the mug and walk away for now.
And in case anyone was wondering how much caffeine you can drink before you die, the answer is around 10 grams (not milligrams).