Have you ever had one of those days when a regular cup of coffee just won’t cut it?
If you are used to drinking coffee every day, you might gradually build up your caffeine tolerance and feel like the effects aren’t strong enough.
Or if you need an extra boost to study for your exams, make it through your night shift or finish that important project.
The good news is that some coffees on the market have a higher caffeine content than regular coffee and will give you the extra energy you need to power through the important tasks.
In this article, I am going to look at how does strong-tasting coffee differ from coffee high in caffeine and investigate what is the strongest coffee in the world that contains more than 10 times more caffeine than a regular cup.
And no, it’s not Death Wish Coffee.
Are Some Coffees Stronger?
Caffeine is present in the coffee beans organically and it acts as the coffee cherry’s natural protection against pests.
Since the caffeine content of the particular coffee depends on the plant variety, region and soil, these high-powered coffee brands source the beans with the highest caffeine levels rather than adding them artificially.
Most of these brands mix in Robusta beans in their blends, which contain twice as much caffeine as the more common Arabica.
Since caffeine has a bitter taste, Arabica beans are considered smoother, more flavourful and higher in quality. This is why strong coffees face the challenge of making their blends not only powerful but also smooth and pleasant to drink.
Strong Coffee: Taste Vs Caffeine
Before we go into talking about the strongest coffees in the world, we need to be clear about its definition and the difference between strong coffee when it comes to taste vs caffeine content.
People often refer to coffee as “strong” in terms of taste, which is why it can be confusing. While most dark roast coffee tastes bitter and strong, it actually contains less caffeine than a light roast.
This is because the longer you roast the beans, the more of its naturally present caffeine is lost during the process.
The second problem with strong-tasting coffee is that low-quality beans are often roasted dark in order to hide their inferior taste.
In order to differentiate themselves from the cheap dark roasted coffees, the strongest coffees mentioned below emphasize the exceptionally smooth taste of their blend.
In this article, when I talk about the strength of coffee, it refers to the caffeine content of the particular blend, rather than the taste.
Manipulating Grind Or Brewing Method For A Stronger Cofee
You might be thinking: If I want to brew a stronger coffee, I will just use more of it, right?
This is not a good idea.
Every brewing method requires a specific grind and amount to brew a great-tasting coffee, so manipulating these factors by using a finer grind or more coffee will enhance the caffeine content, but will also make the coffee taste completely off-balance and undrinkable.
If you’re looking for an extra boost, look at some of the high-powered coffee blends from this list instead.
What's The Strongest Coffee?
The trend of looking for the strongest coffee in the world started with Death Wish coffee. And while it still might be the first brand that comes to mind, it is not the strongest coffee in the world anymore.
Today, there are plenty of coffee brands on the market competing for this title and while most of them claim to be the strongest, always look at the caffeine content per cup when searching for the most intense blend.
Consider the taste of coffee alongside its caffeine levels in order to get a bold boost that will also taste smooth and balanced rather than dark and bitter.
Is It Safe? Proceed With Caution!
While the extra caffeine boost is the goal when looking for the strongest coffee in the world, a crucial question arises – Is it safe to drink?
Some of these coffees contain more than 1000mg of caffeine per cup so it goes without saying that they are not for the faint-hearted and you should only experiment with them if you’re a true caffeine veteran.
In comparison, regular coffee typically contains around 100mg of caffeine and 400mg is considered the safe amount to consume in a day for a healthy adult.
My advice would be not to dive straight into large cups of these high-powered beans and test your tolerance with smaller doses first to see how your body reacts.
Although the extra caffeine is unlikely to kill you, you can experience adverse effects such as anxiety, shortness of breath, coffee jitters, heart palpitations, and severe sleep disturbances. So proceed with caution!
7 Best Strong Coffee Brands
Let’s get down to business and look at the 7 most popular and best strong coffee brands available on the market right now.
I will cover the caffeine content, the type of beans they use as well as the taste you can expect when brewing one of these high-powered blends.
1. Death Wish Coffee
Caffeine: 728mg per 12oz
Death Wish Coffee, established in 2012 was popularized by the SuperBowl where it was marketed as the strongest coffee in the world. Although it still claims this spot, other coffees on the list have even higher caffeine content.
They use organic Robusta strong coffee beans sourced from India and Peru to provide the extra boost and also include some Arabica in their blends.
There are a few different types of Death Wish coffee, including medium roast that provides less intense flavour, avoiding the ever-feared bitterness.
Flavour is one of the most important aspects that Death Wish focus on, promising a bold caffeine content but also a smooth never-bitter flavour.
2. Black Label: Devil Mountain Coffee
Caffeine: 1555mg per 12oz
With 1555mg of caffeine per 12oz cup, the Black Label Devil Mountain coffee is the strongest caffeine coffee on the list, promising almost twice the amount as the popular Death Wish Coffee.
That means that a cup of Black Label coffee contains 10 times more than your regular cup of joe and almost 4 times the recommended daily amount, so you definitely want to be careful with this one.
Even with the elevated caffeine levels, the brand promises a strong but smooth taste from their coffee. This is because they source their beans from high altitudes, providing a premium taste in your cup.
3. Black Insomnia Coffee
Caffeine: 1105mg per 12oz
The Black Insomnia is a brand established in South Africa but is available worldwide. Their dark roast coffee uses a blend of 80% Robusta and 20% Arabica beans. It is a blend of rare exclusive beans found through years of experimentation to find the best taste.
The caffeine in Black Insomnia coffee has been independently verified in a lab and they also claim that the tests revealed that Death Wish coffee contains less caffeine than it says on the label, hoping to claim the spot for the strongest coffee in the world.
They pride themselves in using artisanal roasting methods that ensure the coffee doesn’t taste burnt or bitter. Instead, you can find the tasting notes of caramel, hazelnut, macadamia, and dark chocolate.
4. Biohazard Coffee
Caffeine: 928mg per 12oz
Biohazard coffee might sound slightly weaker than some of the other contestants on this list, but remember that it still contains twice the recommended daily amount of caffeine.
This dark roasted coffee is sold as whole beans so you can ensure freshness by grinding them at home.
They use single-origin Robusta beans for this blend, which means the coffee doesn’t taste bitter but instead has citrus and floral notes with hints of chocolate.
5. Very Strong Coffee
Caffeine: 1350 mg per 12oz
The Very Strong coffee lives up to its name with 3 times the daily recommended amount of caffeine in a single cup.
Very Strong coffee use solely Robusta beans that contain twice the amount of caffeine as Arabica and their dark roast blend is rich, powerful and will wake you up with a strong aroma.
6. High Voltage Coffee
Caffeine: 1150mg per 12oz
High Voltage Coffee is an Australian brand and it claims the spot of the strongest coffee in Australia but is only available in this country.
The coffee is sustainably and ethically sourced, dark roasted and contains no artificial additives.
The coffee prides itself on its great taste that is never bitter and can be delivered fresh in Australia.
7. Banned Coffee
Caffeine: 474mg per 12oz
Contrary to the name, the Banned coffee has never been actually banned. It is produced by artisanal roasters and presents one of the most affordable high-caffeine options from this list.
This coffee is perfect for those who do not feel like going to the absolute extreme with some of the highest-powered blends on this list. Banned coffee still, however, contains 4 times more caffeine than a regular cup.
The medium-dark roast of Robusta and Arabica beans has a clean taste, pleasant aroma, low acidity, long-lasting finish and berry and chocolate tasting notes.
The coffee offers a variety of brewing options, selling whole beans, ground coffee, but also Keurig K-cups and reusable K-cups.
Verdict: The Strongest Coffee In The World
As you have seen, there are plenty of coffees fighting for the title of the strongest coffee in the world.
According to the caffeine levels, the Black Label Devil Mountain coffee offers the strongest blend, followed by Black Insomnia coffee and Very Strong coffee.
Unless you test the coffees in the lab, it can be hard to determine, with certainty, which brand is the strongest. But if you choose any of these coffees, you can count on getting an extra intense caffeine boost.
Remember that all of these coffees contain more than a daily recommended amount in a single cup so proceed with caution and start with small amounts to test your body’s tolerance first.