Caffeine in Starbucks Americano Drinks
When it comes to a Caffè Americano at Starbucks, you get more caffeine bang for your buck than most other types of Starbucks espresso drinks.
In fact, the standard number of shots of espresso in drinks like lattes, mochas and macchiatos all follow the same formula: 1,1,2,2 for the four sizes of hot drinks and 1,2,3 for the three sizes of iced drinks.
But Americanos at Starbucks break these rules. Every size, except an 8-ounce short, actually has more espresso and therefore, more caffeine.
To understand why, let’s first take a look at what an Americano actually is.
What is an Americano
An Americano is brewed espresso that’s diluted with hot water to bring it closer to the strength of a traditionally brewed cup of hot coffee.
This type of espresso drink is not exclusive to Starbucks by any means.
In fact, many believe that the origin of the Americano dates back to World War II. Lore has it that American G.I.s based in Italy watered down strong espresso to make it more similar to coffee from home.
What is a Caffè Americano at Starbucks
The official Starbucks menu lists both hot and iced Americanos.
A hot Caffè Americano is brewed espresso that’s topped off with hot water. It comes in four sizes: short (8 fl oz), tall (12 fl oz), grande (16 fl oz) and venti hot (20 fl oz).
An iced Caffè Americano is brewed espresso that’s topped with cold water and ice. It comes in three sizes: tall (12 fl oz), grande (16 fl oz) and venti cold (24 fl oz).
All Starbucks Americanos are made with their signature dark espresso roast.
However, you can request the more-caffeinated blonde roast or decaf instead.
How Much Caffeine is in an Americano at Starbucks
Ounce-for-ounce an Americano is one of the strongest coffees at Starbucks.
This chart shows the caffeine in Starbucks Americanos and the number of espresso shots per size.
As you can see, there are two factors that determine how much caffeine is in an Americano: (1) the size drink you order and, (2) the espresso roast.
Overall, a 12-ounce tall Americano has 150 milligrams of caffeine and a 16-ounce grande contains 225 milligrams. Both the 20-ounce hot Americano and 24-ounce iced Americano have four shots of espresso and 300 milligrams of caffeine. Substituting in blonde roast adds another 10 milligrams per shot.
If you compare the amount of caffeine in lattes to Americanos you may be surprised to see that some sizes of a Caffè Americano have double the caffeine content of a latte.
This is simply due to the fact that Americanos get more espresso to keep them from being too weak.
Of course, you can order a latte at Starbucks with an extra shot of espresso, but overall, Americanos have more caffeine.
Decaf Americano at Starbucks
Every Starbucks espresso-based beverage can be made with decaf espresso roast.
It also means you can order a decaf Americano.
There are a few ways to order decaf coffee at Starbucks and a hot decaf Americano is a great option, especially since decaf Pike Place isn’t always brewed and ready to go.
And if you’re in the mood for a decaf iced coffee from Starbucks, a decaf iced Americano is the way to go. Neither regular iced coffee or cold brew are available decaffeinated.
Want a half-caff Americano? Here’s what to do. Order either a tall or venti size Americano since they come with an even number of espresso shots. Then ask the barista to split the shots between regular espresso roast and decaf.
Questions You May Have
An Americano at Starbucks is shots of espresso topped with hot water. There’s also an iced version that dilutes the brewed espresso with cold water and ice.
A standard Americano at Starbucks is made with dark espresso roast. However, you can switch it to decaf espresso roast. Additionally, you can order a half-caff Americano made with an equal number of regular and decaf shots.
At Starbucks, every size Americano except short has one more shot of espresso in it compared to the same size latte. For example, a tall Americano has two times as much espresso and double the caffeine of a tall latte.