Tell Me What to Eat

How Many Calories in Coffee?

By Ted KallmyerUpdated August 21, 2022

1 oz of Espresso Coffee has 1 Calorie

And from then on it gets worse…

Here are some common coffee drinks, and it doesn’t take a genius to see that if you are looking after your weight – you’ll stick to black coffee or straight espresso.


Beverage Volume (oz) Calories
Instant coffee 1 tsp 4
Instant coffee 8 4
Espresso Coffee 1 1
Brewed Coffee 8 2
McDonald’s Cappuccino 16 130
McDonald’s Latte 16 180
McDonald’s Mocha 16 330
McDonald’s Brewed Coffee (Large) 16 0
McDonald’s Caramel Frappe – Most Fattening at McDonald’s 21 670
Dunkin Donuts Latte 10 120
Dunkin Donuts Cappuccino 10 80
Dunkin Donuts Mocha Swirl Latte 10 230
Dunkin Donuts Brewed Coffee 10 15
Dunkin Caramel Swirl Frozen Coffee – Most Fattening at Dunkin 32 1170
Starbucks Brewed Coffee 16 5
Starbucks Caffè Americano 16 15
Starbucks Caffè Latte 16 220
Starbucks Caffè Mocha (no whip) 16 290
Starbucks Caffè Mocha (whip) 16 360
Starbucks Cappucino 16 140
Starbucks Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha (whip) 16 560
Starbucks Caffe Vanilla Frappuccino Blended Coffee (whip) 16 430
Starbucks Hot Chocolate (no whip) 16 330
Starbucks Java Chip Frappuccino – Most Fattening at Starbucks 24 600

This is the Starbuck’s effect in action. Starbucks turned a low (or no) calorie beverage into a sugar-fat laden monstrosity.

Sick Yet? Check out our guide on quitting coffee here.

I, however, love coffee, but I only drink straight espresso.

Maybe I’m addicted. I tell myself there are worse things to be addicted to, and that makes me feel better.

Most people slam coffee as being bad for you, but plain black coffee has a lot of researched health benefits.


This cup of espresso has just 1 calorie.

It’s the Milk and Sugar!

Coffee drinks are high in calories due to what we add to the coffee.

Caffeine is a bitter chemical so we tend to sweeten it up – with milk, sugar, or syrups.

The larger the drink volume – the more milk you will be getting. With espresso-based drinks (latte, cappuccino) – the amount of water in the drink is minimal (typically 45ml / 1.5 fl. oz per espresso shot).

You do the math:

A 16 ounces Grande Latte from Starbucks will have two espresso shots (~ 3 oz) — that leaves around 13 ounces of 2% milk (depending on how much foam tops the drink) – so there’s 198 Calories already.

Add in cream, a pump of flavored syrup, and some sugar – and you are in for a very calorie-dense drink – more like sweetened milk than coffee.

I think I’m beginning to sound like a coffee snob.

Calories in Coffee Extras

If all else fails, maybe Snoopy can help.

If all else fails, maybe Snoopy can help.

Calories (per Tablespoon)
Whole milk
Fat-free milk
Almond Milk
McDonald’s Coffee Cream (liquid)
Plain nondairy creamer (powder)
Plain, light nondairy creamer (powder)
Flavored nondairy creamer (powder)
Flavored, reduced-fat nondairy creamer (powder)
Plain nondairy creamer (liquid)
Plain, light nondairy creamer (liquid)
Flavored nondairy creamer (liquid)
Flavored, reduced-fat nondairy creamer (liquid)

Coffee is almost Zero Calorie

According to the USDA nutrient database – an 8-ounce cup of coffee (brewed from grounds) has just 2 (yes two) Calories. The calories come from a tiny amount of protein and some mono-unsaturated oils.

A coffee bean has oils in it (which is why a barista often needs to clean their espresso machine to prevent an oily build-up).

Sometimes a really bad coffee can be due to the oils in it becoming rancid (this often occurs from dark roasts, which cause a subsequent release of oils – if the beans are stored for a long time the oils may go slightly rancid).

So: coffee beans + water = virtually calorie-free.

The Best Coffee Drink For You Is…

If you are looking at reducing the number of calories in your diet and coffee is your thing: It’s time to work on that sweet tooth.

The best option is to drink an Americano (espresso + water).

Believe it or not, espresso drinks have less caffeine than brewed drinks (where the water is in contact with the coffee grounds for a longer time).

Minimize the number of extras you put into your coffee – and you may well remove a significant amount of Calories from your diet.

To save even more calories see our 10 Easy Kitchen Hacks for Healthy Cooking.

Nutrition sources: Starbucks. Mcdonald’s, Dunkin Donuts.

Photo Credit: JonathanCohen.

Macro counting mini-course

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