How Much Caffeine is in Boba Tea?

Written by a few bubble tea addicts, on Jul 10, 2022

How much caffeine is in boba tea?

TLDR: Boba tea has an average of 50 mg of caffeine per cup. Typically you can expect 20 to 80 mg per drink, depending on the type of tea. Caffeine-free options like Taro are also available.  

Are you a boba tea addict? Do you need your fix to start your day off right? Maybe you just enjoy the taste of tapioca pearls. Whatever the reason, it can be hard to find out how much caffeine there is in different boba teas. That's why we've taken the time to do the research to give you an accurate answer of just how much caffeine is in boba tea.

Does boba tea have caffeine?

Most bubble tea has caffeine in it. But, caffeine in tea is different from the caffeine in coffee. Caffeine in tea is slow acting. This means it doesn’t come with the negative effects of post-caffeine consumption. 

Ever get the coffee jitters? Or a post-coffee crash?

Tea doesn’t do that. This means you can have your boba tea without fear of a typical caffeine crash! Keep in mind, that you may still experience a crash if your drink has too much sugar.

Which boba teas have the most caffeine?

Here is a breakdown of each type of tea and its caffeine contents compared to a cup of coffee.

Caffeine in coffee vs. tea

Black Tea

This is the typical tea used at boba shops to create the Classic Milk Tea we all know and love. 1 cup of black tea contains an average of 40 to 50 mg of caffeine. This is a general range for black teas. But, black Assam tea contains anywhere from 60 to 80 mg of caffeine per cup. 

Green Tea

1 cup of green tea contains an average of 20 to 30 mg of caffeine. Green tea is low in caffeine compared to other teas and coffee, but it still contains a bit of caffeine.

Want to get a little more caffeine in your boba? Try Matcha! Matcha green tea is a popular choice for many boba lovers and contains up to 70 mg of caffeine per cup, which is still less than a cup of coffee!

Fruit Tea

Fruit tea isn’t as simple as the rest of the teas. Fruit teas are made by combining tea with a fruit puree or syrup. So, if your fruit tea has black tea as the tea base, it will contain slightly less caffeine than regular black tea. This ranges from 30 to 40 mg of caffeine. But, if your fruit tea uses herbal tea, it won’t contain any caffeine at all. Herbal teas are caffeine-free!

Herbal Tea

Want the boba without the caffeine rush? Bubble teas using chamomile, ginger, or peppermint don’t contain any caffeine. This is because they are made from dried leaves, flowers, or seeds that are caffeine-free. 

Coffee Boba

Did you know you can get boba coffee?

While it tastes amazing, it's important to know that 1 cup of coffee contains an average of 95 mg of caffeine. Brewed coffee contains the most caffeine per serving and espresso contains the most caffeine per volume, at roughly 63 mg of caffeine per shot.

What affects the caffeine content in boba tea?

The amount of caffeine in your drink depends on four important factors: what type of tea you use, the amount of tea included, how long the tea is steeped, and how the water is when you steep it. Let's go through each one.

The type of tea

The two most common types of tea used in bubble tea are black and green tea. The caffeine in black tea ranges from 40 to 80 mg of caffeine per cup. This is because some black teas, like Assam tea, are higher in caffeine than others. But, if you’re looking for a tea that’s low in caffeine, green tea will be your friend, with only 20 to 30 mg of caffeine per cup.

The amount of tea

The formula is simple here. The more tea you add, the more caffeine will be released into your drink. Usually, the amount of tea leaves used is the same from boba shop to boba shop. If you make your bubble tea at home, this is something you can control by following the instructions that came with your tea. 

The length of steep time

Tea leaves release more caffeine the longer they sit in hot water. As mentioned above, this is pretty standard at each boba shop. But if you make your bubble tea at home, you can decide how long you want to let the tea brew. 

The water temperature while steeping

Similar to the length of time you steep your tea, you can generally expect that the hotter you steep your tea, the more caffeine will be extracted from the leaves. Be careful though. Heating your tea outside of the ideal temperature range can result in a poor flavor being extracted.

How to brew tea

Look at the instructions for your tea and follow the steeping suggestions. Staying within suggested temperature ranges will let you to control your caffeine intake while ensuring your tea still tastes amazing.

So how much caffeine is in boba tea?

Bubble tea is relatively low in caffeine with an overall average of 50 mg per cup. This makes it a great option if you want to cut back on caffeine.

To make it even easier to do this, we suggest trying a Pearly bubble tea kit. Our kits generally contain less caffeine than your normal boba tea and we share all the ingredients in our drinks on our product pages. For example, our original milk tea kit has only 3mg of caffeine per drink! The kits only take 3 minutes to prepare and more affordable than buying bubble tea at the store.