How Much Caffeine in a Shot of Espresso?

Espresso is a concentrated form of coffee. It is commonly served in a serving size of 1.5 ounces. Many people love this form of coffee because it has a strong aroma and flavor. However, many of us still don’t have any ideas on how much caffeine is in a shot of espresso.

If you are wondering about this interesting fact, you can take a look at this article now. We are going to discuss some interesting things about caffeine in espresso. As a coffee lover, you may want to know about all of these details from your favorite espresso.

How much Caffeine in a Shot of Espresso?

how much caffeine in a shot of espresso

One of the most important things to consider is the size of the cup for making espresso. In most parts of the world, professional baristas are going to pull an espresso shot in a 1-ounce cup. One ounce of espresso will contain about 60 – 65 mg of caffeine. This number is pretty higher than the caffeine level from regular coffee. A single ounce of regular coffee will only have about 12 – 14 mg of caffeine.

The standardized amount of caffeine in a shot of espresso is ranging from 60 to 100 mg. However, this number may be affected by many different factors. You have to take a look at some of these factors, so you can determine the amount of caffeine in your favorite espresso.

Every coffee bean will be different

This is an important thing that you have to consider. Beans from different areas or regions may have different levels of natural caffeine. This fact can make different types of espresso may have slightly different levels of caffeine.

Espresso recipes will be different among different cafes

You need to understand that different espresso recipes may result in different levels of caffeine. For example, one coffee shop may use about 20 – 25 grams of coffee beans for pulling a shot of espresso, while another coffee shop may use about 15 grams of coffee beans. It will lead to a different caffeine level.

Different brewing time will result in different caffeine level

You need to understand that different brewing times for producing espresso will result in different caffeine levels. Different baristas are going to have different brewing methods and brewing times. The ideal brewing time for making an espresso shot will be around 20 – 30 seconds. All available caffeine is usually released during the first minute of the extraction process.

What is the maximum limit of caffeine consumption every day?

According to the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), most adults are going to need to limit caffeine consumption to about 400 mg every day. This is a standard limit that may be different from person to person. Different people may have different responses to caffeine, especially after they consume espresso every day. This limit equals about 4 – 5 shots of espresso. You need to listen to your body. You will tell when you have already drunk more caffeine than your body can handle.

Espresso is a specialized way of making coffee that originated in Italy, the method requires hot water to be exported under pressure through very fine coffee grains. Espresso can be made using various types of coffee beans and roast varieties. Espresso is usually more concentrated than coffee that is produced using different processing methods. This method of coffee production produces a thicker, more concentrated coffee. A shot of espresso usually serves as the base for many popular coffee beverages such as cappuccino, caffe latte, and Caffe macchiato.

Coffee for the coffee lover

Espresso typically contains a higher percentage of caffeine per unit volume than other coffee types. However, contrary to popular belief, there is less caffeine in a shot of espresso compared to a regular size mug of coffee. The amount of caffeine found in a shot of espresso will vary depending on the origin of the beans used and the method used to roast the beans; these are factors that should be taken into consideration when comparing caffeine content.

According to nutritional data compiled by the Department of Agriculture, a single shot of espresso contains approximately 63mg of caffeine. A shot of regular coffee would usually contain approximately 12-16 mg of caffeine however, regular coffee is rarely consumed by the shot, it is often consumed in large coffee mugs, approximately 8 ounces of coffee per mug. This works out to be at least 95 to 128mg of coffee per mug. 

Espresso Origin 

An Italian inventor, Angelo Moriondo developed the concept for the espresso machine in the 1800s however, the machine failed to reach the commercial market. A few years later in 1906, Luigi Bezzera and Desiderio Pavoni developed another machine built off the back of Moriondo’s idea for a rapid-fire coffee machine. The idea of the machine was to create a single cup of coffee in seconds, “Caffe espresso.”

In the 1960’s Carlo Ernesto Valente further developed the espresso machine to produce a nine bar espresso machine that produced super fast shots of coffee. 

What is Caffeine? 

Caffeine is a naturally derived stimulant that is found in coffee, tea, cocoa, and various plants. It stimulates the brain and nervous system producing feelings of alertness, it provides the consumer with an extra boost of energy and some studies have shown that caffeine can boost concentration and focus. 

The first cup of coffee was produced in 2737 B.C. However, some historians report that coffee was discovered by an Ethiopian shepherd named Kaldi in the 9th Century. Whatever the case may be, caffeine has been around for many years, religious leaders and scholars have used caffeine as a tool to aid long prayer and study sessions, and it continues to be utilized effectively as a natural stimulant worldwide. 

How Does Caffeine Work in The Body? 

When you consume a caffeinated beverage or any food product that contains caffeine, the gut rapidly absorbs the caffeine and it quickly enters the bloodstream. It is then transported to the liver, where it breaks down and impacts different organs in the body. However, it primarily affects the brain. When you consume caffeine, you feel energetic and alert because it essentially inhibits the effects of adenosine, a neurotransmitter that causes tiredness. 

Often coffee drinkers experience the effects of espresso quickly because they drink it fast, regular cups of coffee are usually sipped slowly over time thus the caffeine hit is less intense. One cup of coffee can hit the bloodstream in about 15-20 minutes. Espresso shots usually take about 10 minutes to work, because they are concentrated and they are often consumed quickly. 

More Information About Espresso 

Espresso is essentially produced by pushing steaming hot, pressurized water into well-ground, densely packed coffee beans. This process results in a full-bodied, very rich, robust cup of dark coffee. Espresso shots are traditionally served in a small demitasse cup, approximately four to five ounces in size. Espresso shots usually serve as a base for various drinks such as cappuccinos and Americanos. 


The most basic and simple espresso drink consists of one shot of espresso. Usually, this requires a shot filter and approximately 8 grams of fine ground coffee bean. 


Ristretto comes in a smaller cup and is made with half the amount of water than for a single shot of simple espresso. The caffeine content is approximately 33mg per single shot of ristretto according to the Mayo Clinic. 


A doppio is essentially a double shot of espresso. 


Cappuccino is produced using about a third of espresso, a third steaming hot milk, and third foam milk. You can also try another type of cappuccino called a dry cappuccino which is made with a smaller measurement of milk. A small to medium-sized cup of cappuccino contains about 80 mg of caffeine. A large 120 mg cup of cappuccino contains about 120 mg of caffeine. 

Caffe Latte 

Caffe Latte is made using one part espresso and two parts hot milk, finished off with a tiny amount of milk foam. Usually, they are made with a double shot of espresso, demerara sugar, cocoa powder, and cinnamon. A typical latte using a double shot of espresso should contain about 140 mg of caffeine. 


Mocha is typically sweet and is made using a latte as a base with chocolate-flavored syrup or cocoa powder. Sometimes people add additional ingredients like caramel and mint-flavored syrup. A medium-sized cup of mocha might contain about 80 mg of caffeine. 

Espresso Macchiato 

An espresso macchiato is essentially a shot of espresso combined with a little bit of steamed milk and some milk foam. This usually contains around 63mg of caffeine, it is usually made with a single shot of espresso.


Americano is a popular choice for iced coffees and is usually made with a single shot of espresso and extra hot water added. Although it is watered down, a single cup should contain about 63mg of caffeine. 

Health Benefits of Drinking Espresso 

Despite some negative effects reported by some about drinking espresso. There are many health benefits associated with drinking it. Here are some of those benefits: 

Boosts Long Term Memory 

Drinking caffeinated drinks such as espresso can help to boost your long-term memory. It helps to improve the amount of information you assimilate and retain. Therefore, drinking espresso before you study for an exam or before you take an examination could facilitate the process of recalling information. 

Boosts Concentration and Focus 

One of the most powerful benefits of consuming espresso is the boosting of concentration and focus. Studies have highlighted that drinking caffeinated beverages such as espresso or strong coffee could help to boost concentration and focus. According to Healthline, the stimulative effects of caffeine promote the production of dopamine which affects how well you can focus or concentrate on a particular task. 


Caffeine contains powerful antioxidants that work to inhibit free radicals which essentially cause disease in the body. Caffeine contains hydroxycinnamic acids, these are the compounds that facilitate the inhibition of free radicals. 

Great For Exercise 

Drink a shot of espresso before you start a workout, it boosts energy levels and improves performance. Caffeine is often found in pre-workout powders, drinks, and supplements which are popular amongst athletes and bodybuilders. 

Weight Loss Aid 

Caffeine has been known to boost weight loss efforts because it not only speeds up the metabolism but it also acts as an appetite suppressant. This is why caffeine is also found in weight loss supplements that boost metabolism and speed up the weight loss process. 

Reduces Stroke Risk 

Some studies have shown that drinking espresso can help to reduce the risk of stroke, especially in women. These studies highlight that caffeine consumption can reduce the overall risk of stroke however, more tests need to be undertaken to confirm this further.

To Conclude 

In a single shot of espresso, there are approximately 66 grams of caffeine. However, the amount of caffeine in a single shot will depend on the quality of the roast, the age of the bean, and various other factors that need to be taken into consideration when thinking about the amount of caffeine found in a single shot of espresso. Also, the caffeine levels vary depending on where the bean was grown and how fine the grain is when it has ground. There is no definitive answer because the caffeine levels will vary from cup to cup and from coffee to bean to coffee beans. However, for the sake of knowing the approximate amount of caffeine contained in a single shot of espresso, it is ultimately about 66mg per single shot cup. 

Caffeine and its Effects on the Human Body

Many of us feel tired without our needed cup of coffee in the morning. This is because the aromatic drink contains caffeine, a stimulant with an uplifting effect, which is also found in energy drinks, cola, and tea. In small quantities, caffeine is even found in cocoa. But how much caffeine is recommended per day and what does this substance trigger in our body?

What exactly is caffeine?

Caffeine is a natural substance and is found in various plants. Found in the fruit or the leaves, these plants use the substance to ward off pests. However, the psychoactive substance can also be found in seeds or even be produced synthetically to be added to drinks and food. Depending on the type of alkaloid, consumers can also find the substance under the names theine, guaranine, or methyl theobromine.

What physical effects does caffeine have on our bodies?

The consumption of stimulants causes the release of stress hormones. These are known as adrenaline and cortisol. As soon as the release occurs, the blood pressure begins to rise and the heart frequency increases. Depending on the amount of the substance, this can take between 15 and 30 minutes. The stimulating effect will then disappear after a few hours. This is because the psychoactive substance is excreted with urine.

In some people, alkaloid stays in the system for longer than in others. This is due to the individual metabolism rate which differs from person to person. The frequency of caffeine consumption is also a decisive factor. People who drink coffee and tea less frequently feel a stronger effect because they don’t experience a habitual effect. Similarly, the sensitivity to caffeine varies from consumer to consumer.

What positive effects do coffee and tea provide to us?

Most people feel more alert shortly after drinking a cup of coffee. But why does this happen? There are certain receptors in our brain which keep the active ingredient in coffee. This blocks these receptors and releases a messenger substance. This substance then determines the activities of the brain.

Only a mere 100 mg of caffeine can stimulate our ability to think and increases the coordination ability of our body. The sensation of pain is also reduced. This is because the blood vessels contract after drinking caffeinated drinks. For this reason, many people drink coffee or tea when they have headaches and migraines to relieve their pain.

When is it too much caffeine?

Caffeine also has a positive effect on athletically active people. The substance often has an endurance-enhancing effect before training. According to studies, 330 mg can already contribute to a significant increase in endurance. In sports such as rowing and cycling, this can lead to an increase in the endurance of 30 to 120 minutes.

According to the German Institute of Nutrition Research (DIfE), coffee can help prevent cancer. The consumption of four cups a day reduces the risk of liver cancer by about 75 percent. An even higher consumption does not lead to even lower risk, however, but to a more likely occurrence of overdose symptoms.

Can I develop a tolerance for the active ingredient caffeine?

People who consume higher doses of caffeine for a longer period can develop tolerance. This is because more receptors are formed in the brain, which in turn require more caffeine to be blocked. If the receptors are not blocked, the work of the nerve cells is slowed down. This habitual effect can occur after several days or weeks of heavy coffee consumption.

What happens when I stop drinking caffeine?

People who drink coffee on a regular and frequent basis may experience mild withdrawal symptoms.

These are reflected in the following points:

  • Mild headache
  • Tiredness
  • Reduced vigilance
  • Lack of energy
  • Fatigue

Less frequently, mood swings and a lack of concentration can occur. Occasionally, people also observe increased irritability. But after only two days, these symptoms are often a thing of the past. In some cases, however, it can take nine days before the withdrawal symptoms disappear.

What happens if I drink too much caffeine?

As a rule, adults are said to have overdosed if they consume one gram of caffeine per day. However, an excessive dose of the substance depends on many factors. These include weight, age, and also consumer behavior.

Usually, people notice an overdose of alkaloids when they experience a significantly higher pulse rate. Extrasystoles can also occur. Since caffeine is a psychoactive substance, there is also an occasional development of severe irritability and anxiety combined with sleep disorders if the consumption of coffee is more than moderate.

What is the optimal dose of caffeine for adults?

The German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment provides clear information, which is divided into daily and individual doses. Over a day, the Institute recommends not exceed 400 mg caffeine. Within the framework of a single dose, however, no more than 200 mg of the psychoactive substance is recommended. 200 mg of the substance is contained in about two cups of coffee.

Consumers who want to know exactly which amount is suitable for them should consider their weight as a factor. According to the Institute, it is safe to consume 5.7 mg of caffeine per kilogram of weight. People who weigh 100 kg can, therefore, consume 570 mg of caffeine per day, which corresponds to five to six cups of coffee. In comparison, the maximum single dose is three milligrams per kilogram of body weight. Nursing and pregnant women should note that half of the above-mentioned amounts are considered safe.

How much caffeine is safe for children and young people?

Besides coffee, even cocoa contains caffeine. Since cocoa and chocolate are frequently consumed by children, parents should know how much of the substance is harmless. For young people between 10 and 18 years of age, the EFSA recommends 0.4 to 1.4 mg of caffeine per kilogram of body weight. For children between the ages of three and ten, the maximum amount of the substance is 0.2 to 2.0 mg per kilogram of body weight. Infants between one year and three years of age may consume a maximum of 2.1 mg per kilogram of body weight. Babies should completely avoid caffeinated drinks and food.


The substance is associated with numerous health benefits. That is why many people turn to coffee, cola, and tea to improve their concentration ability or to relieve headaches. Also, consumers usually feel more alert after drinking one or two cups of coffee. However, if too much of the substance is consumed, undesirable effects such as sleep disorders or an increased heart rate can occur. Irritability also occurs sporadically. For adults, the recommended maximum dose of caffeine is 5.7 mg per kilogram of weight. In infants, children, and adolescents, the amount of this active ingredient varies greatly according to age. It is therefore recommended to follow the guidelines of the EFSA.

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