thumbnail Written by Patrick Dinkins

Caffeine in coffee, delicious coffee… A common question I’m asked is, “What has more caffeine, light roast or dark roast?” There’s a lot of falsehood out there about caffeine and coffee. Like, “The darker the roast, the less caffeine,” or, “Light roast has more caffeine” — these statements are not true.

All Arabica coffee beans (what 100% of our coffees are made from)  have the same amount of caffeine in them. You simply cannot roast the caffeine out, no matter how hard you tried. If you did try, you would be left with nothing but ash (and ash doesn’t make for very good coffee). So here’s the scoop: it comes down to a weight vs. volume thing.


Visual of 40g light roast vs 40g dark roast

As the coffee goes through the roasting process, you roast the moisture out and the beans expand. Beans are roasted longer to get a dark roast, so the darker the roast, the more moisture is taken out, therefore taking more weight out of the coffee. This means it takes more dark roast to weigh out 40g of coffee than it does a light roast. So, using this method you may have a tiny bit more caffeine in your brew because you are using more dark roast to brew with.


Visual of 40g ground light roast vs 40g ground dark roast

Light roast coffee is more dense than dark roast, so if you use the same volume of dark roast as you do light roast when brewing your coffee (for instance if you typically use a coffee scoop), you are using less coffee with a dark roast, therefore less caffeine, if that makes sense.

Happy brewing!


Get to know Patrick Dinkins, Cameron’s Roastmaster and Certified Arabica Q Grader.

5 Comments

  1. I just started drinking coffee last year and I’m hooked on your Peruvian Blend! Cameron’s is the ONLY coffee that I like because of the eco pods. I love that they do not leave that burnt plastic taste in your coffee and they are good for the environment. I just placed an order to try some of your flavored coffee pods and am so excited to be able to order them online! How do I get one of the cool mugs with the Cameron’s Lion on it? I’m a Leo and LOVE lions! This one is so majestic….LOVE! Donna

  2. Very interesting about the roasts and amount of caffeine.
    Thank you.

  3. How do you decaf coffee and what chemicals do you use?

  4. great to know I was wondering specifically how much caffeine your coffee had in it when I came across this article on the differences or lack there of, I dumped almost twice as much light roast in my coffee maker just now thinking I would need more of it to equal the caffeine of a dark cup, and then I read this article, lol well going to be super caffinated soon I guess

  5. The majority of our beans are decaffeinated using the Indirect Solvent-Based Method, with the exception of our Organic Decaf French Roast, which is water processed.

    The Indirect Solvent-Based Method indirectly removes the caffeine from our beans Our beans are soaked almost at boiling temperature for many hours to remove the caffeine. Then the beans are taken out of the water, and the water is treated with methylene chloride to remove the caffeine. The remaining water is heated leaving only a little moisture, and that moisture is added back to the beans to allow them to regain most of their natural oils and flavors.

    For more in-depth information about coffee decaffeination, follow the link below!
    http://coffeeconfidential.org/health/decaffeination/

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