Coffee Basics: Caffeine

A freshly brewed cup of coffee

How brewing methods affect caffeine level

By Chris Ali


February 19, 2024

Brew Coach

Coffee lovers rejoice! There's more to your morning cup than just the rich aroma and bold flavor. The brewing method you choose has a significant impact on the caffeine content of your favorite beverage. Let's explore how the way you brew can influence the kick you get from your coffee.

Brew Time Matters

The longer coffee grounds are in contact with water, the more caffeine they release. This means that brewing methods with longer extraction times, like cold brew or French press, result in a higher caffeine concentration. If you're after a robust cup, these methods might be your best bet.

Heat it Up with Espresso

Espresso, the concentrated coffee shot loved by many, is made by forcing hot water through finely-ground coffee under high pressure. Surprisingly, while it might seem stronger, espresso has less caffeine per ounce compared to regular drip coffee. The quick extraction process limits the amount of time water spends in contact with coffee resulting in less caffeine extracted.

The Roast Factor

Contrary to popular belief, the roast level of your coffee beans doesn't significantly affect caffeine content. Lighter roasts may have a bit more caffeine, but the difference is minimal. Choose your roast based on flavor preferences rather than caffeine concerns.

As you embark on your coffee journey, keep in mind that the method you choose plays a crucial role in determining the caffeine content of your cup. Whether you're a fan of the slow-steeped cold brew or the quick pick-me-up of espresso, understanding how brewing methods influence caffeine levels allows you to tailor your coffee experience to match your desired intensity.

If you’re sensitive to caffeine or trying to limit your overall caffeine intake, delicious decaf coffees exist to provide that coffee experience without sacrificing taste and quality. To find out more about how decaf coffee becomes decaffeinated, check out our article here. You can also keep reading about our take on caffeine here.

Cheers to your coffee adventure!



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