LAST UPDATED: October 9, 2019

How Many Calories Are In Coffee?

Coffee lovers around the world have something in common. All of us have a unique way we prepare our coffee. While others love the bitter taste of black coffee, others like their coffee with plenty of milk or sugar. Then you have those that prefer other stuff like vanilla, chocolate syrup, soy, and other things in their morning coffee.

No matter the style you prefer your coffee, a cup of coffee is one of the essential things that get us through the day and help to resuscitate flagging energy levels in the evening. For something that provides so much energy, you might believe that it must contain a large volume of calories. How many calories are in coffee? And how many calories are in a cup of coffee with cream?

Why plain coffee lacks calories?

How Many Calories Are In Coffee?Without processing, coffee has zero calories. That is a fantastic fact for a drink that provides extra levels of energy. The little calories that are found in coffee come from the brewing process. Why is this so?

Well, the coffee bean (in case you did not know, coffee is a seed), plays a unique role, and that is to assist the coffee plant in sprouting up. All it requires is enough calories to produce a sprout. Once this occurs and the shoot lies above the ground, the coffee bean’s purpose has been accomplished. It requires only a little amount of energy to achieve this.

What adds calories?

How Many Calories Are In Coffee?Whether your coffee contains a large number of calories or not depends on what you put in it. A cup of regular, plain coffee contains around two calories. When we say regular coffee, we mean black coffee, without any additions.

Addition of extra flavours increases the number of calories in your coffee. Hence, if you are trying to lose or maintain weight, you have to watch the extras you add to your coffee. Whether at home or your favourite coffee shop, adding extras will add a significant amount of calories. In the table below, you can see the different flavourings and extras, and how many calories are in coffee with cream and sugar.

Beverage Volume (oz) Calories
Instant coffee 1 rounded tsp. dry powder 4
Instant coffee 8 4
Espresso Coffee 1 1
Brewed Coffee 8 2
Brewed Decaf Coffee 8 0
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp of cream)
9 106
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp of half & half)
9 42
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp of whole milk)
9 20
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp of 2% milk)
9 17
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp of skim milk)
9 12
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp plain powdered creamer)
9 68
Brewed Coffee
(w/2tbsp plain liquid non-dairy creamer)
9 42
Homemade Latte
(6oz whole milk)
8 91
(Adding Sugar to above) 1tsp add 16

As can be seen from the table above, if you are looking to reduce your weight, you should avoid extras in that cup of coffee every morning. As soon as you deviate from plain coffee, the amount of calorie dramatically increases. And if you are interested in popular brands like McDonalds and Starbucks coffee offers, just click the link and see the precise information on their official websites. And most likely you will be surprised to see that such coffees contain a meal’s worth of calories.

Impacts on your health

Many health benefits come from drinking plain coffee. Let us consider some of these benefits.

1. Weight loss

Plain coffee contains chlorogenic acid. Chlorogenic acid is known to help with weight loss. It increases the rate at which the body sheds weight. Hence, drinking plain coffee in the evening just after your dinner, this element will reduce the rate at which glucose is produced in the body. Aside from chlorogenic acid, black coffee also contains several anti-oxidants that can help you to lose weight effectively.

2. Suppresses hunger

The caffeine found in black coffee increases the rate of metabolism in the body and provides you with extra energy. Increased energy levels and metabolic activity can help suppress the feeling of hunger.

Aside from these benefits, coffee also has other vital benefits. According to this report from 2017 in the British Medical Journal, coffee also:

  • Reduces the rate of cardiovascular diseases
  • Reduces the rate of death from stroke
  • Reduces the incidence of several cancers

Despite all these benefits, coffee is also associated with some risks. According to the report above, frequent consumption increases the risk of bone fracture in older women. It also probably increases the risk of fetal harm in pregnant women. Additionally, unfiltered coffee increases cholesterol levels.

Final words

How Many Calories Are In Coffee?If you cannot get through the morning without a cup of coffee, be aware that your favourite drink might be worse for you than eating a huge slice of cake every morning. Most people that say they cannot go a morning without coffee would change their mind if they had to take it plain or black.

As our findings reveal, plain or black coffee is the best type of coffee if you do not want any calories. With a low-calorie count of 2 calories per cup, it is a very healthy drink.

Drinking coffee laced with extras like cream, sugar, vanilla, and more makes it easier to swallow, but it adds loads of calories to your drink. This post doesn’t urge you to completely shun extras in your coffee (we all have a sweet tooth), but the wise course is to drink them only occasionally. Other practical steps that you can take to reduce the number of calories in your sweetened coffee include using sugar-free syrup for flavouring your drink. You can also add some flavour by sprinkling some cinnamon on your drink.

With everything, including plain coffee, moderation is key to enjoying the benefits and avoiding any risks.

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