Costa Coffee cappuccino contains staggering five times more caffeine than Starbucks

Coffee drinkers looking for a highly-caffeinated beverage may be best-suited visiting Costa
Coffee drinkers looking for a highly-caffeinated beverage may be best-suited visiting Costa
Lewis Stickley
Ben Chapman

By Ben Chapman

Published: 01/02/2023

- 14:20

A new study has evaluated the caffeine on offer from some of the high street's most popular cafes

Coffee drinkers looking for a punchy caffeine hit with their beverage may be best suited visiting Costa, with the high street cafe offering products five times stronger than Starbucks, new research has found.

A medium cappuccino at Costa Coffee contains 325mg of caffeine, which equates to five times the amount found in a typical cappuccino from Starbucks, Which? has found.

The study found “huge” differences in the amount of caffeine served up by high street chains, meaning customers are often unaware of how much they are consuming.

More than 200mg of caffeine could pose a health risk to pregnant women, nutritionists have warned.

Greggs and Pret A Manger offer significantly less caffeine than Costa, with 197mg and 180mg respectively.

In comparison, a 250ml can of popular energy drink Red Bull contains 80mg of caffeine.

Pret’s single espresso contains 180mg of caffeine, which is around six times as much as the same product from Starbucks, which has 33mg by comparison, according to the consumer group.

Pret’s filter coffee also contains the most caffeine of the high street chains at 271mg, two and a half as much as Starbuck’s offering, which contains 102mg.

Greggs and Pret offer much less caffeine than Costa
Greggs and Pret offer much less caffeine than Costa
Tim Ireland

Greggs came in as a close second to Pret for its caffeine levels, with a cup of filter coffee containing 225mg.

The variations are down to the number of caffeine shots used across the chains and the type of coffee bean.

There are two main types of bean, arabica and robusta. The former contains about half the amount of caffeine of the latter.

The findings are a potentially concerning trend for people who are sensitive to caffeine, with Which? Nutritionist Shefalee Loth urging people to “consider” where they are ordering their coffee from.

She said: “Many of us rely on coffee to get us through the dark winter mornings but our research shows you may be consuming significantly more, or less, caffeine than you bargained for.

“Our analysis has shown that there are big variations in caffeine content between drinks from different high street coffee shops.

“Most of the time this shouldn’t be an issue but if you drink a lot of coffee or need to limit your caffeine intake you might want to consider what you’re ordering and where from.”

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