Find out Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew can caffeine content and how it’s different from their regular cold brews so that you can enjoy this drink to the fullest.
If you’re a fan of Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew, you’ve likely wondered how much caffeine is actually in each cup. This popular iced beverage is made with cold brew coffee, nitrogen, and a few other ingredients, so the caffeine content can vary depending on the size of your cup and the type of coffee used. Let’s take a look at the caffeine content of Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew so you can make the most informed decision when it comes to your coffee consumption.
What Is Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew?
Starbucks Nitro cold brew is a particular type of cold brew coffee that was introduced in 2016 in some Starbucks stores but gradually spread to all of their coffee shops. This nitro cold brew has a distinct look, flavor, and texture and is prepared and served in a separate way. Although nitro cold brew is a cold coffee beverage, it is not the same as iced coffee, which is made by quickly brewing coffee with hot water and then chilling it.
Compared to how coffee is typically prepared, cold brew is made at a considerably lower temperature. This method necessitates a longer brewing period. Contrary to drip coffee, which brews in hot water in only a few minutes, nitro cold brew typically requires 12 to 24 hours of steeping in cool to room temperature water; Starbucks steeps its cold brew for 20 hours.
Instead of going into a coffee maker or urn, nitro cold brew is often placed in a bottle or keg to be held at a cold temperature. Simply put, nitro cold brew is cold brew coffee that has been kegged and added nitrogen as it is poured into your cup.
The nitro cold brew is served without ice as it has already been brewed cold and stored at a cold temperature in a keg. I was slightly taken aback as there was no straw that came with my nitro cold brew. I realized that a straw won’t help me get the full experience of the thick foam in the nitro cold brew. Then I noticed the broad hole in the lid that does the job right.
Differences Between Cold Brew, Iced Coffee, And Nitro Brew
|Nitro Brew||Cold Brew||Iced Coffee|
|The base is cold brew||Made from coffee grounds steeped in cold water for 12-24 hours||Made from hot coffee brewed|
for a few minutes
|Infused with nitrogen||Not treated with any gas|
|Heavier, smoother, creamier texture||Lighter texture||Light texture|
|Served from a tap without ice||Served from a pitcher||Served with ice|
|Thick foam on top||No foam on top||No foam on top|
|Resembles stout beer||No distinct appearance||Plain appearance|
|Caffeine content varies as per flavor|
and cup/can size
|Lower in caffeine||Higher caffeine content due to|
hot water brewing
|Less acidic, less bitter, and sweet taste||Less acidic and less bitter||More acidic and bitter|
|Chocolate notes||Coffee notes||Coffee notes|
|Available in Starbucks cans||Not available in cans||Not available in cans|
Nitro cold brew and iced coffee differ in brewing time, brewing temperature, brewing method, serving method, caffeine content, taste, texture, and flavor. Iced coffee is made from hot coffee that has been brewed for a few minutes and then poured over ice. Nitro cold brew is made from coffee grounds steeped in cold water for 12 to 24 hours to absorb all the caffeine, color, and flavor. It’s then strained to get a coffee concentrate that can be mixed with milk or dairy alternatives.
Nitro cold brew is cold brew coffee infused with nitrogen, a colorless and odorless gas that changes the texture of the coffee beverage, giving it a rich and silky mouthfeel. And here lies the main difference – the texture. While cold brew coffee is light, nitro cold brew is heavier.
Appearance is also different as you don’t get a foam top on a cold brew coffee whereas you get a thick topping of foam on a nitro cold brew because the nitrogen in the cold brew coffee is light and rises to the top.
A cold brew coffee has a lower caffeine content because of cold brewing, which does not extract the full spectrum of caffeine, oils, and flavor compounds from the coffee. So, there is less acidity, less bitterness, and more sweetness than regular cold brew.
Whereas cold brew coffee is served from a pitcher, nitro cold brews are served from a tap and the nitrogen in it adds some sweetness and chocolate tones. One more difference is that you can get canned Starbucks nitro cold brew in different flavors.
What Does Nitro Cold Brew Taste Like?
The taste, appearance, and texture of Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew are surprisingly different from what I expected when I first ordered it. The nitro cold brew flows slowly from a tapped keg, resembling more a stout beer than a coffee beverage. The nitrogen causes a froth of tiny bubbles to form, fill the cup, gradually separate, and rise to the surface of the liquid. You get a cup of rich, dark coffee topped with a head of thick, luscious crema that will remind you of your favorite beer.
The drink’s consistency is also more similar to that of a stout than a cold brew coffee. Regular hot or cold brew coffee is more watery than Starbucks’ Nitro Cold Brew. In your mouth, nitro cold brew feels more substantial, rich, and silky smooth.
What does nitro coffee taste like?Starbucks nitro cold brew is noticeably sweeter due to the nitrogen that was added and it also draws out the chocolatey undertone. That’s why there’s no need to add any sweetener and you would be ruining its taste if you did so. Plus, its lower acidity makes it less bitter than a standard cold brew coffee, and a better choice for people who need a cold brew that’s easy on their digestive system. The bonus point of Starbucks nitro cold brew is it helps in weight loss and retains a lot of nutrients and antioxidants as it’s brewed in cold water.
Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew Caffeine Count
|Caffeine Content Comparison||Caffeine (in mg)|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Grande (16 fl oz)||280|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Tall (12 fl oz)||215|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Black (11 fl oz)||235|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Black, Unsweetened (9.6 fl oz)||155|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Vanilla Sweet Cream (9.6 fl oz)||110|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Dark Caramel (9.6 fl oz)||155|
|Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Dark Cocoa Sweet Cream (9.6 fl oz)||110|
Caffeine count depends on the coffee beans you are using, the grind size, and the brewing time and method. If you’re a regular at Starbucks, you may want to know how much caffeine in Starbucks drinks.
You can choose either a Tall (12 fl oz) or a Grande (16 fl oz) of Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew. Don’t expect a Venti nitro cold brew because you won’t get the same nitro cascade or the stream of bubbles in a larger Starbucks cup size. The Tall size has 215 milligrams of caffeine while the Grande size has 280 milligrams as per their website. So, if you compare the caffeine count of Grande nitro cold brew with that of a Grande Hot Pike Place Roast (310 milligrams) or a Grande Hot Blonde Roast (360 milligrams), it’s lower. But it’s higher than that of a Grande Iced Coffee which contains 165 milligrams of caffeine.
You can carry the nitro cold brew taste in a can. Here’s a list of all the Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew Can flavor and their caffeine content.
- Vanilla sweet cream: 110 mg (9.6 fl oz)
- Black unsweet: 155 mg (9.6 fl oz)
- Black: 235 mg (11 fl oz)
- Dark Caramel: 155 mg (9.6 fl oz)
- Dark Cocoa Sweet Cream: 110 mg (9.6 fl oz)
As you can see, the Starbucks nitro cold brew sweet cream caffeine content is the lowest as is the dark cocoa sweet cream among the canned variety. The black variant is very high in caffeine content, almost reaching the daily recommended limit of 300-400 milligrams. You can buy all these Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew cans online from Amazon. And if you have trouble with caffeine, you can order any of the 30 Starbucks low caffeine drinks.
Is Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew The Most Caffeinated Drink?
No, Starbucks Nitro Cold Brew is not the drink with the highest caffeine content. With 340–380 milligrams of caffeine per Grande serving, Clover Brewed Coffee has the highest caffeine content. With 280 mg of caffeine, the Nitro Cold Brew is Starbucks’ second-most caffeinated beverage. However, the menu does not provide a Venti nitro cold brew. In comparison to other beverages in the bigger venti size, Nitro Cold Brew has less caffeine. Cold Brew, Americano, Iced Shaken Espresso, and a venti-sized cup of plain brewed coffee all include 300 milligrams or more caffeine.
How Much Caffeine Is Too Much?
According to FDA, 400 milligrams of caffeine per day is okay for an adult. This means four to five cups of coffee in an 8-ounce coffee cup size.