White tea is a minimally processed tea that provides delicate flavors and a pleasant aroma.
Before you drink some, you may be wondering, how much caffeine is in white tea?
Quick answer: Generally speaking, white tea has a caffeine concentration of between 6 mg to 55 mg per 8-ounce cup. It’s simply a myth that it has lower caffeine than other teas since its concentration varies greatly based on the variety and how you brew it.
In the article below, I’ll tell you what white tea is, how much caffeine is in it, and how its caffeine content measures up to other types of tea.
What is White Tea?
White tea is a delicate tea brewed from the under-developed leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant. Unlike green and black tea varieties, white tea is minimally processed. The young tea leaf buds are harvested when they still have fine white hairs on them, hence the name “white” tea.
Tea leaves are handpicked and quickly dried, causing white tea to be less oxidized and less processed than other tea varieties. Because the leaves are dried quickly, white tea offers the freshest tea leaves available.
White tea is known for its pleasant aroma and flavor. Connoisseurs describe white tea’s flavor as floral, grassy, citrusy, herby, and mild. It combines well with fruit flavors like peach and lemon.
This kind of tea is typically brewed longer and hotter than other teas. Unlike green tea, white tea is more forgiving with steep times and temperature. It retains its delicate flavor, even when steeped longer than needed.
How Much Caffeine is in White Tea?
So, let’s discuss the answer to your question.
With many things, it depends. Generally speaking, an 8-ounce cup of white tea contains anywhere between 6 and 55 mg of caffeine (Yeah I know this is not helpful at all!). Do not trust the sources online stating that white tea contains a lower range of caffeine.
The truth is that the exact caffeine content of white tea will depend on the specific white tea variety and how you brew it, and it can vary drastically! In fact, even researchers found no correlation between the type of tea and its caffeine concentration. If you speak to tea experts, they will tell you that it is a myth that white tea is low in caffeine.
Let’s take Silver Needle, for example. It contains more caffeine than some other white teas like White Peony because it contains newer buds which are more caffeinated.
As far as brewing, its caffeine content is affected by brewing temperature, the amount of leaves and steeping time. The form of the tea also affects the caffeine since tea bags have more caffeine in general than loose leaf tea.
Let’s look at some popular brands of white tea to see their caffeine concentrations.
- According to Twinings of London, their white tea has 25-30 mg per 7 oz serving in their tea bags (I had to email them).
- iMoZai and Uncle Lee’s both have 15 to 20 mg of caffeine per cup.
- Tazo’s Berryblossom White tea contains significantly more caffeine at 31 to 45 mg per cup.
As you can see, these amounts vary and additionally, many companies don’t list the caffeine content on their boxes.
If you’re looking to reduce caffeine in tea, you can do such things as buying decaf, steeping for less time, brewing at a lower temperature, or drinking the second or third steep instead of the first.
Caffeine in Other Teas
If you’re looking for the lowest amount of caffeine in a “tea”, herbal tea normally has no caffeine. However, for the tea purists, herbal tea is not really “tea” since it doesn’t come from the Camellia sinensis plant.
Although it varies just like white tea, green tea generally has between 20 mg to 50 mg of caffeine in an 8-ounce cup. Matcha tea normally has more caffeine than regular green tea.
As far as black tea, many sources say that it has between 40 and 70 mg of caffeine in an 8-ounce cup. However, I’ve also read that it’s a myth that black tea contains more caffeine than green tea, so don’t rely on these numbers.
As you can see, the caffeine content in white tea varies based on a number of factors such as the white tea variety and how you brew it such as temperature and steep time.
Generally speaking, it contains 6 mg to 55 mg of caffeine in an 8-ounce cup, but I would speak to the maker of the tea for further details on your chosen white tea.
Many tea experts state it’s a myth that white tea has lower caffeine than other teas. You may find lower caffeine estimates from other sources, but I would challenge them to provide support for their claims.
Let me know if you have any questions or comments below.