Which Teas Have The Most Caffeine?

What is Caffeine?

Caffeine is a bitter, white crystalline organic compound that is water soluble. It’s found in the seeds, fruits, nuts and/or leaves of several plants native to Africa, East Asia and South America. The primary plants we’re familiar with are, of course, coffee and tea.
Caffeine is a natural stimulant that may reduce drowsiness and increase energy. Generally at a low dose it improves reaction times, concentration and motor coordination. The amount needed to affect a person largely depends on their body size and tolerance.
an assortment of spoons and tea balls with blooming tea and leaves on a white wood table

What Determines the Caffeine Amount in Tea?

Which teas have the most caffeine can be very complicated to determine. With the camellia sinensis tea plant, there are many factors involved.
1. How much sun/shade the plant gets
2. The height of the plant
3. The age of the plant, and
4. How the leaves were processed.
If your tea has no true tea leaves in it, you’re actually drinking a tisane. Tisanes have no caffeine. If you are drinking a tea blended with fruits or herbs, the caffeine percentage will vary from cup to cup. Primarily the amount depends on the ratio of tea leaves to other ingredients.
Because science.

So... How Much Caffeine is There?

But! Let’s not let science get in our way of estimating the caffeine in tea. As a very general rule:
  • White teas have around 10 mg per cup
  • Green teas have approximately 20 mg per cup
  • Oolong teas will have around 30 mg per cup
  • Black teas come in at around 40 mg per cup.
Even black teas have less than half the caffeine as the same size cup of coffee. So unless you are very sensitive to it, you will probably be comfortable drinking tea.
Check out our handy infographic below to compare the levels in tea.
Caffeine in Tea Infographic Cupper’s Coffee & Tea
Herbal and rooibos teas contain no caffeine. Tisanes are perfect if you want a natural caffeine-free choice. There are many different blends of herbal and rooibos to choose from. Savoury or sweet, mild to strong, light to dark, there’s a flavour for all styles. For a particularly uplifting caffeine-free tea, try Numi Rooibos Chai.
As you may have gathered, there are many different types of tea and it can be a bit overwhelming at first. Check out our Beginner’s Guide to Luxury Teas to help get you started.
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