is blonde espresso stronger

Is blonde espresso stronger?


Starbucks has started the discussion....again. 

Ever since the release of their new blonde espresso, the question of caffeine counts has come up. How much caffeine is in blonde espresso vs normal espresso?

blonde espresso vs normal infographic

The Verdict: Blonde espresso is stronger as it contains slightly more caffeine (85 mg vs. 64mg). Caffeine numbers are a direct result of the roasting process. Blonde espresso beans are roasted slightly lighter giving them more caffeine. 


Strange, right? One would think darker beans would contain higher caffeine number however this is not the case. Let's go over why blonde roasts contain more caffeine.

Blonde roasts are wonderful in any brew method, especially french press, however are most popular in espresso


Why is blonde espresso stronger? 


Without knowing anything about coffee bean roasting or the different types of beans out there, even a coffee noob can come to the quick conclusion that the beans of a blonde roast will be lighter in appearance (and taste). So, how does this happen?

What makes a coffee "strong" is completely up to you. What I find to be a "face-punching" (super strong) shot of espresso, others may find to be extremely weak and lacking in flavor. 

Speaking of flavor, there is quite a difference is taste when discussing blonde vs darker roasts. Dark roasts tend to be much more harsh, unforgiving, however much less acidic than lighter roasts. Blonde roasts, on the other hand, go down smoother and are more acidic. 

Dark roasts lose their acidity during the roasting process as they are heated for longer periods of time. It's because of this that blonde roasts come out stronger.  

How much caffeine is in one shot of espresso?


Normal espresso - 64 mg

Blonde espresso - 85 mg

The amount of caffeine in a shot of espresso a directly determined by the amount of time the coffee bean is roasted for. The longer the roast period, the less caffeine there will be. Additionally, higher temperatures result in less caffeine. 

So, a blonde roast coffee is going to contain higher amounts of caffeine than it's dark roast counterpart as:

  1. The beans have been roasted for less time
  2. The roasting temperatures are cooler

How many calories in a shot of espresso?


Normal espresso - 3

Blonde espresso - 2

espresso nutritional information
Normal espresso nutritional information.
Source: USDA