Wondering how many milliliters of espresso are in your favorite cup of coffee may not make the top of your list when you place an order at Starbucks. But if you’re interested in making your own or want to monitor your caffeine intake, knowing how many ml of caffeine is in espresso is a good place to start.
Espresso forms the base for many popular coffee beverages, from lattes and cappuccinos to macchiatos and Nespresso. The ml in a cup of espresso can vary depending on the coffee shop or how it’s brewed but a good rule of thumb to follow is that 30 ml is equivalent to one shot of espresso. This small size packs a punch of bold, intense, and expressive caffeine.
Want to know more about espresso sizes and caffeine measurements, check out this full guide to the difference between single and double shots from a basic caffe latte to a popular Americano.
- How Many mL Are in a Shot of Espresso?
- What’s the Difference Between Single and Double Espresso Shots?
- How Many ml Are in a Single Shot of Espresso?
- How Many Ounces Does a Shot of Espresso Have?
- How Much Caffeine Is Safe Per Day?
- What’s the Best Way to Measure Espresso?
- How Many ml is a Starbucks Espresso Shot?
- Espresso Drinks ml and Ounce Size: Tall, Grande, and Venti
- Final Thoughts On Espresso Shot Size
- Video Tutorial – How To Pull The Perfect Shot Of Espresso
How Many mL Are in a Shot of Espresso?
One shot of espresso is equivalent to 30 ml or 1 fl. oz. A ml is a measurement size for the liquid, in contrast to mg of caffeine. For example, while one espresso shot is 30 ml, it has 64mg of caffeine.
What’s the Difference Between Single and Double Espresso Shots?
A single shot of espresso is the entry-level measurement for the intense, dark coffee that forms the base, along with steamed milk and flavorings, to make many kinds of caffeinated drinks.
While most coffee beverages aren’t described in terms of shots, most baristas serve espresso as either single or double shots.
A single shot glass of espresso contains 30 ml of the intense drink, while a double espresso stacks those numbers to equal 60 ml.
How Many ml Are in a Single Shot of Espresso?
A single shot of espresso is made from 7-9 grams of fine-ground, coffee beans and brews about 30 milliliters of espresso (Roughly 1 Fluid Ounce of espresso). You can double this number per shot to figure out how many ml of espresso are in multiple shots.
For example, if you choose a drink with four shots of espresso, which most experts agree contains close to the maximum safe level of caffeine per adult per day, you would have 120 ml of concentrated espresso.
How Many Ounces Does a Shot of Espresso Have?
A solo shot of espresso equals one fluid ounce, while a double shot, also known as a doppio, contains two fluid ounces, and so on. Keep in mind that the number of ounces can vary depending on what kind of espresso shot you order since some espresso shot recipes might have a higher fluid ounce level than others.
Espresso Shot Sizes, Measures, And Caffeine Levels
This table represents average weights and measures for single shots of espresso. The measurements are based on the higher end of the typical amount of ground espresso (or any ground coffee). So for ground espresso, that would be about 9g of ground coffee in a portafilter.
The amount of caffeine produced from using 9g of ground coffee generally ranges between 63-75mg. I used 75mg here to simplify the table. I’d rather lean toward the higher amount.
Keep in mind that these values are not absolute. They are typical amounts that can vary based on the dose, grind size, and coffee used. And even at that, there will be minor variations with each shot even if you don’t change the dose and so forth.
So these amounts will not be perfectly linear. But, they represent the averages.
|Number of Espresso Shots
|Ground Espresso in grams (g)
|Amount of Espresso in Fluid Ounces (fl oz.)
|Amount of Espresso in Milliliters (ml)
|Amount of Caffeine in Milligrams (mg)
How Much Caffeine Is Safe Per Day?
Harvard EDU (caffeine) and other sources such as the FDA recommend no more than 400mg of caffeine intake daily.
What’s the Best Way to Measure Espresso?
Once you identify which type of espresso machine you have, select dark roast coffee, and grind the beans to a fine texture, you’re ready to start pulling shots.
The key to measuring espresso is that you’ll want to match one tablespoon of ground espresso to an ounce of water. This comes out to 7 grams per ounce.
Since it’s considered a somewhat new practice to weigh espresso shots, most baristas in the past typically eyeballed the level to figure out when a shot finished. Today, a single shot of espresso made with 7 grams of fine grind yields a total of 30 ml or 1 fl. oz. of espresso, so that’s the equation that you’ll want to aim for when pulling shots.
How Many ml is a Starbucks Espresso Shot?
Better espresso machines today mean that a barista can get a more precise shot of espresso. In the rest of the specialty coffee world, one espresso shot equals one fluid ounce.
At Starbucks, this isn’t the case, since the brand’s espresso shots are just 0.75 fl. oz. This means that you may be getting less caffeine content in your Starbucks drinks than you may think.
If you ask for a single shot in your drink, the barista will typically pull a double shot but employ a split portafilter to divide the double shot in half for you.
This can be confusing if a barista uses 20 grams of coffee to make an espresso shot because this could technically turn it into a triple shot due to the stanard grams-to-milliliter ratio.
This doesn’t really change the flavor of the drink. It’s just easier and more efficient for Starbucks employees to make a double to serve customers faster.
The double shot also produces a lot more crema than a single shot, which can give your beverage a thicker golden-brown foamy top. If you separate the foam from the espresso concentrate, you might have 40-50ml of espresso instead of 60 in a double shot due to all the extra crema.
Espresso Drinks ml and Ounce Size: Tall, Grande, and Venti
At Starbucks, the basic small, medium, and large coffee cup sizes are upgraded and divided into Tall, Grande, and Venti categories.
Here’s the breakdown for different size espresso drinks:
- A tall Starbucks espresso is 12 ounces and holds 355 mL of coffee. It also has one shot of espresso.
Outside of the US, a regular size coffee cup holds 8 oz. or 236 ml. Both short (8 oz.) and tall Starbucks sizes have the same level of espresso and caffeine.
- A grande Starbucks size is 16 oz. or about 473ml.
- A hot venti size holds 20 oz. or 591ml
- A cold venti size has 24 oz. or about 710ml.
Both Starbucks Grande and Venti sizes contain the same amount of espresso and caffeine.
All of these coffee drinks will have varying levels of caffeine due to size and number of shots, but both ml and fluid ounces are standard for each shot.
Café Con Heilo,
Basic Nespresso or Nespresso Lungo
This means that you can get different shot amounts with different amounts of caffeine in different types of drinks, but the total amount of liquid (except for ice, whipped topping, or crema thickness) will remain the same.
For example, an iced latte at Starbucks won’t have the same amount of foam whipped into stiff peaks, which can make a difference to how much actual liquid is present in your Starbucks tall, grande, or venti drink.
Keep in mind that darker roasts produce more intense espresso with less crema, so if you want to get more concentrated espresso with less foam, ask for a blonde espresso which is made with a lighter roast.
Final Thoughts On Espresso Shot Size
There are a lot of things to consider besides taste when it comes to ordering a drink at a popular branded chain like Starbucks.
Just because you order a larger-size drink with espresso doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll get a higher dose of caffeine.
For example, a French Vanilla coffee has lower caffeine levels than an iced latte since it’s also filled with cream and sugary French Vanilla bean syrup.
If you want to get your money’s worth of caffeine, consider opting for a beverage that has a higher ml of caffeine or a dark, deep espresso based rather than a, creamier drink to give an extra boost to get you through the day.
Video Tutorial – How To Pull The Perfect Shot Of Espresso
References and Citations
Caffeine. The Nutrition Source. (2020, November 12). Retrieved November 10, 2022, from https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/caffeine/#:~:text=%5B5%5D%20The%20U.S.%20Food%20and,healthy%20adults%20to%20consume%20daily.
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