What tea has the least caffeine: the secret guide to choosing decaf tea

Hey there, fellow tea enthusiasts! Are you ready to embark on a journey to find the lowest caffeine tea out there? It may sound daunting, but trust us, it’s worth it for the sake of your caffeine intake. Join us as we dive into the world of low-caf teas and rank them based on their caffeine content per serving. And don’t worry, we’ll give you all the tips and tricks you need to find and prepare these magical brews. So buckle up and get ready to sip on some serious low-caf goodness!

Straight to the point: let’s look at the most popular teas and compare their caffeine content (from low caffeine to high)

In order to choose for yourself the best and tastiest drink that will suit the amount of caffeine, to begin with, it is worth to understand what teas are available to us and how they differ.

1 Herbal tea: chamomile, ginger and peppermint

Who knew that teas could come without all the caffeine!

Herbal teas 2

We’ve got a whole list of the lowest caffeine options and they’re not even technically considered “teas.”

These herbal infusions, or “tisanes” as they like to be called, are caffeine free and perfect for those who want to sip on something soothing without the jolt.

And if you’re wondering where the name “tisanes” comes from, it actually means crushed barley in Greek. So, go ahead and enjoy your caffeine-free brew, no barley required.

2 White tea

Want a little pick-me-up without the jitters? Enter: white tea!

This sun-dried sip is named after the silver buds of the tea plant that often make an appearance in white tea blends. But it’s not just the buds that make this tea unique – it’s the minimal processing that makes it one of the lowest caffeine teas around.

White tea

Basically, the leaves are picked and sun-dried to give them a leisurely pace of oxidation. If you’re looking to really ramp up the caffeine content, opt for a white tea made solely from the white buds. But if you’re craving a mellow sip, stick to the mature leaves for the lowest caffeine content.

3 Green tea

Looking for a tea that won’t give you that wired feeling like you just downed a Red Bull? Look no further! We’re about to explore the world of green tea with the lowest caffeine content – your ticket to a calm, centered state without the jitters.

Green tea


What do you get when you combine toasted rice and green tea leaves? A delicious mixture called genmaicha!

In the beginning it was a way to be frugal, but it quickly caught on with everyone’s taste. The toasted rice gives a warm, popcorn flavor that is perfect for any time of day.

And if you’re trying to avoid caffeine, genmaicha is a great option: about 20-30 mg of caffeine per 8 pound cup, and it won’t make you nauseous like a cup of coffee. So, if you’re looking for a delicious tea that won’t make you bounce off the walls, try genmaicha!


Do you want to sip on some tea without the jitters? Then let me introduce you to Kukicha, the green tea with the lowest caffeine content around.

The caffeine in tea is basically a built-in insect repellent for the leaves, but since Kukicha is made from stems and leaves combined, there’s less of that delicious buzz to go around. But don’t let that fool you. This humble tea blend packs a flavor that’s reminiscent of summer grass and straw – the perfect sip for any zen moment.

Green teas


When it comes to tea, you have to use the whole plant. Of course, the leaves can be MVPs, but the stems can also be valuable players. Take Karigane, for example. Made from the stems and leaves of the Gyokuro plant, this tea is the perfect green tea for beginners. Not only does it soften the herbal flavor that some consider too strong, but it also contains less caffeine than its leafy counterpart.

And while regular Kukicha contains an average of 16 to 19 milligrams of caffeine, Karigane can have as much as 30, thanks to the shaded tea bushes.

But don’t worry if you’re sensitive to caffeine-this stem tea is still safe. So go ahead, sip Karigane, and feel like a tea connoisseur in the process.


Hold onto your tea bags, folks, because we’ve got a doozy for you – Hojicha! This little number is the party animal of the tea world – low on caffeine but high on flavor. It’s made by tossing dried tea leaves and stems into a huge roasting machine, giving it a smoky, earthy taste that will make your taste buds dance. And get this – it was originally created as a way to make the tea harvest last longer. Who knew being thrifty could be so delicious?

Imagine this – a perfectly roasted tea that just warms you up from the inside out, like a hug in a mug. Hojicha, a Japanese tea that comes from leaves and stems that didn’t quite make the cut for premium teas like Gyokuro and Sencha, has become a household name for tea lovers. With notes of coffee, caramel, and chocolate, it’s like dessert in a cup.

Bancha Hojicha

And the best part? You won’t be bouncing off the walls like a kangaroo on caffeine because it’s only got about as much caffeine as a high-five from a sloth. So curl up with a good book and a steaming cup of Hojicha – your taste buds AND your heart rate will thank you.


Move over sencha, there’s a new green tea in town and it’s called Bancha! This tea is made from the wise, old leaves of the tea plant that don’t need as much protection from caffeine as their younger counterparts. So don’t expect to be up all night after sipping on this low caffeine beverage.

But what it lacks in caffeine, it makes up for in flavor with hints of warm wood and popcorn – making it the perfect pairing for your next movie night snack fest. Who needs buttered popcorn when you can have a cup of Bancha in hand?

Matcha Green Tea Latte

Ready for some matcha magic? Our last tea on the list is the Matcha Tea Latte! This vibrant green powder packs a caffeine punch, but not to worry – you won’t be bouncing off the walls. With just 34 mg of caffeine per teaspoon, you can sip on this latte grade matcha without fear of overdoing it. In fact, it’s one of the lowest caffeine powdered teas out there, even lower than the fancy ceremonial grade stuff. So go ahead, whip up a matcha latte and get that morning buzz without the jitters.

Matcha Green Teas Latte

If you’re someone who needs that extra boost of caffeine to start your day, then ceremonial grade matcha is definitely your go-to.

But be warned, not all matchas are created equal.

The matcha seisui and matcha washimine are like the caffeine kings of the matcha world – they’re brimming with more caffeine than your average cuppa.

If you’re afraid of the caffeine taking away from that delicious matcha flavor, just mix your latte with oat milk or soy milk. It turns out, the smoother the matcha, the less it will stand out in your latte. So shake off those worries and keep enjoying your matcha latte, no need to worry about going overboard on the caffeine.

Which Japanese tea has low caffeine? 

Japan has got you covered with some of the lowest caffeine teas around! Check out bancha, genmaicha, kukicha, and hojicha for a sippin’ experience that won’t leave you wired. Bancha is made from mature leaves, genmaicha gets its toasty goodness from rice, kukicha has tea stems, and hojicha is roasted to bring those caffeine levels down.

4 Oolong tea

Who knew that the secret to a flavorful and smooth tea was using older leaves? Oolong tea has got it all figured out. It’s the diva of tea – all about nuance and complexity. These leaves go through a whole process of being bruised and heated, resulting in a partially oxidized tea with flowery and spicy flavor profiles. It’s like the Beyonce of teas – a little bit of processing and it’s perfection.

Oolong tea

And the best part? It’s one of the lowest caffeine types, so you can sip on it all day without the jitters.

You see, the old leaves used in oolong tea production contain less caffeine than the young buds. So, if you’re looking for a low-caffeine brew, go for the high mountain oolong. But if you’re looking for a little pick-me-up, reach for those tasty buds.

Thank you, Oolong, for keeping us grounded and deliciously caffeinated.

5 Black tea

Black teas are totally oxidized, which basically means they’re picked, chilled, and allowed to turn naturally. During this chill sesh, enzymes party in the tea, transforming the catechins into theaflavins and thearubigins.

But, it’s not just about the party vibes – black tea actually varies in caffeine content.

Black tea

A brew made from youthful tea buds, like Jin Jun Mei, will have you bouncing off the walls, while using older tea leaves will make for a more lowkey caffeine experience. So, next time you’re reaching for a cuppa, make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into!

6 Pu-erh or Heicha

If you’re looking for a way to take a break from caffeine without sacrificing flavor, then have no fear because there’s tea that can deliver on both fronts.

Dark teas and post-fermented teas are where it’s at when it comes to low caffeine content, because these teas have basically gone through a tea metamorphosis.

Pu erh

The older the tea leaves are used and the longer they’ve been fermented, the lower caffeine you’ll find. It’s like a caffeine breakdown party happening in your tea! So go ahead, brew up some low caffeine Heicha and enjoy a guilt-free sip.

7 Matcha

Do you ever feel like you need an extra jolt of caffeine in the morning? Well, have no fear because matcha is here!

Unlike traditional tea leaves, matcha powder is mixed directly into water, giving it an extra caffeine kick.

Just add more powder if you’re looking for something extra strong. A regular serving of matcha has about 136 milligrams of caffeine, but if you’re feeling fancy and want to try koicha, a thick matcha paste, you’ll get a whopping 272 milligrams of caffeine.


Only the smoothest matcha powder is used for this luxurious drink, which is served during special tea ceremonies. So, next time you need a pick-me-up, skip the coffee and reach for some caffeinated matcha instead!

8 Mate & Guayusa

Did you know that there are two holly plants in South America that are the ultimate caffeine boosters? They’re called Mate and Guayusa, and they’ve been keeping people awake for centuries. But hold up, did you know they’re not actually true teas because they don’t come from the tea plant (mind blown, right?).

Most teas without caffeine are tisanes, but these bad boys pack even more caffeine than high caffeine green tea!

If you’re looking to stay awake all day (and possibly all night), one cup of yerba mate can contain a whopping 180mg of caffeine. And if that’s not enough for you, Guayusa can contain even more.

The secret is all in the preparation – you need to use a super high leaf to water ratio. Just fill up a gourd ⅔ of the way with leaves and pour hot water on top (add a little honey if you need some sweetness). Get ready to stay up and party all night long (or just study really hard, whatever floats your boat).

Comparative table of caffeine content in different teas

Herbal teas: chamomile, ginger, and peppermint This type of herbal teas is usually caffeine-free or contains only trace amounts of caffeine.
White teaWhite teas contains a low amount of caffeine, usually ranging from 15-30 mg per 8-ounce cup.
Green teaGreen teas contains moderate amounts of caffeine, usually ranging from 30-50 mg per 8-ounce cup.
GenmaichaA Japanese green tea that is blended with roasted brown rice. It typically contains around 30-40 milligrams of caffeine per cup (8-ounce (240-milliliter) serving).
Kukicha:A Japanese tea that is made from the stems, stalks, and twigs of the tea plant. It typically contains around 15-30 milligrams of caffeine per 8-ounce (240-milliliter) serving.
HojichaA Japanese green teas that is roasted, which gives it a nutty, slightly smoky flavor. It typically contains around 10-30 milligrams of caffeine per 8-ounce (240-milliliter) serving.
Bancha:A Japanese tea that is made from the larger, more mature leaves of the tea plant. It typically contains around 20-60 milligrams of caffeine per 8-ounce (240-milliliter) serving.
Matcha Green Tea Latte:A latte made with matcha powder, which is a powdered form of Japanese green tea. The caffeine content can vary depending on the amount of matcha used and the size of the serving, but a typical 12-ounce (360-milliliter) serving of a matcha latte made with 2 teaspoons of matcha powder can contain around 70-80 milligrams of caffeine.
Oolong teaOolong teas contains slightly more caffeine than other tea, usually ranging from 30-70 mg per 8-ounce cup.
Black teaBlack tea contains the highest amount of caffeine among traditional loose-leaf tea, usually ranging from 50-90 mg per 8-ounce cup.
Pu-erh teas or HaichaPu-erh tea and Haicha (dark tea) contain a similar amount of caffeine as black tea, usually ranging from 50-90 mg per 8-ounce cup.
MatchaMatcha, which is made by grinding whole green tea leaves into a powder, contains a relatively high amount of caffeine, usually ranging from 70-130 mg per 8-ounce cup.
Mate and GuayusaThese types of teas contain a high amount of caffeine, usually ranging from 85-150 mg per 8-ounce cup.

Is there any tea without caffeine at all?

Believe it or not, decaf tea isn’t a real thing. If it’s made from the tea plant, it’s got caffeine in it. Sure, you can go through the process of decaffeinating it, but it’s still not caffeine-free. But if you’re really trying to avoid the buzz, go for kuki hojicha. It’s practically made from tree bark and then roasted to bring the caffeine levels down even more.

Herbal teas

How Much Caffeine Is in Tea and What Does the Amount Depend on?

It turns out that the amount of caffeine in tea can vary from as low as a sloth’s energy level to as high as a hyperactive toddler. With leaf tea alone, you could be sipping on a measly 8mg of caffeine or a whopping 140mg per serving. So, if you’re feeling sluggish, opt for a roasted kukicha or channel your inner Usain Bolt with a saemidori gyokuro like the gyokuro cha meijin.

What nuances are important when calculating caffeine levels in tea?

There are certain secrets to unlocking the caffeinated mystery of tea. Let me tell you, it’s not all about the type of tea or how long you steep it for. Some of these factors are more elusive than spotting Bigfoot in the forest.

For a more detailed guide on how long the journey is from tea leaf to brew, we described in detail here.

But, lucky for you, we’ve done the research and have compiled a list of teas with the lowest caffeine content. So, put down that espresso and grab a cup of tea without fear of turning into a wide-eyed maniac.

Tea Varietals

Well, the caffeine content can vary even between different teas siblings! For instance, an average serving of gyokuro cha musume from the Yabukita cultivar has roughly 130mg of caffeine, whereas saemidori gyokuro cha meijin contains about 140mg.

It can also be noted that green and white teas have lower caffeine in the cup than black tea.

So, choose wisely because it’s not just a casual cup of tea, it’s a caffeine-consumption decision!

Harvest Time 

Did you know that the caffeine content in your tea can vary depending on when it was harvested? That’s right, early birds (or should we say early leaves) get the most caffeine! If you’re looking for a more relaxed tea experience, go for the later harvest tea. It’s like choosing between a morning espresso shot or a soothing chamomile tea before bed.

Harvest Time

Growing Practices

Did you know that farmers can play a game of “caffeine roulette” with their tea plants? That’s right, thanks to different growing practices, the caffeine content can vary wildly. And here’s a fun fact for you – if a farmer decides to throw some shade on their tea plant, it will actually produce even more caffeine!

So if you’re looking for a buzz, go for some shady gyokuro or matcha. But if you’re more of a decaf kind of person, stick with the unshaded teas.

Processing Methods 

Did you know that leaves are like tiny caffeine factories? But don’t worry, you can decaf-ify them through roasting and aging. The science behind it is pretty cool, and it’s why teas like hojicha and puerh are lower in caffeine. So, if you’re caffeine sensitive, go for the roasted teas – it’s like giving your cup of tea a chill pill.

Water Temperature

It turns out that the person who makes your cup of tea has real power! If he uses boiling hot water, there will be more caffeine in your cup than if he uses lukewarm or cold water. And if you really want to get rid of the pesky caffeine, try brewing your tea the cold way. For example, you can try cold brewing green teas and the results will be amazing!

Steep Time [brewing process]

Ever wonder why some cups of tea make you feel like Superman and others leave you feeling like Clark Kent? It’s all about the steep time, my friend. Just like a good steak, the longer you leave those tea leaves in hot water, the more caffeine gets extracted. So if you’re looking for a brew with a little less buzz, cut that steep time short.

Amount of Tea Leaves

Listen, my tea-loving friend, if you’re looking to control the caffeine in your cuppa, you have one powerful tool at your disposal: the tea-to-water ratio. It’s like having a volume knob for your brew.

Amount of Tea Leaves

If you crank up the tea leaves, you’ll get a bold, flavorful infusion that will sing to your taste buds.

But if you turn it down, you’ll get a more mellow cup with lower caffeine.

Click guide How much loose tea per cup

So, it’s up to you to decide: do you want to rock out with your tea out, or take it easy and give your nerves a break? The choice is yours!

Read also:

Top healthy teas with the health benefits

Looking for a morning pick-me-up without the buzz? Check out some of these delicious and healthy tisanes! This tasty way to start your day won’t pump you full of caffeine, just give you something fun to sip on while watching the sunrise.

Rooibos tea

Have you ever heard of rooibos tea? It’s like a party in a cup, straight from the bushes of South Africa. This delicious tea is made by roasting and crushing the rooibos plant, resulting in a rich red hue and a sweet, woody aroma reminiscent of cedar woods. And the best part? It’s not just a tasty drink, it even has health benefits and can help your body better absorb iron!

Rooibos tea

Hibiscus tea

Stop drinking tea, because hibiscus tea is a new flavor sensation! Made from dried hibiscus flowers, this tea has serious effects with its combination of tart and sweet cherry flavors. In addition, it is practically a health potion because of its health benefits, as it is able to lower blood pressure and increase vitamin C intake.

Hibiscus tea

Chamomile tea

If you’re longing for a cup of tea before bed, but don’t want the caffeine jitters, consider chamomile tea! This tea is the Beyoncé of low-caffeine infusions, made from the dried flowers of the chamomile plant.

Chamomile tea

Turmeric tea

Get ready to brighten up your life with turmeric tisane! Not only does this root have a rich history of health benefits and relief of joint pain and inflammation, but it also gives a bright orange hue and spice to your particular tea.

Turmeric tea

How much caffeine is in a cup of tea vs drink coffee? 

Did you know that coffee is like a speed demon with caffeine levels ranging from 95mg-120mg per small cup? On the other hand, tea is more like a chilled-out sloth because of the l-theanine that slows down caffeine absorption.

But don’t be fooled, some teas like Gyokuro can pack a punch with 120mg-140mg of caffeine per cup, making it the Red Bull of teas. And if you’re feeling wild, go for Matcha with a caffeine range of 68-272mg.


Which tea has the most and least caffeine?

Who knew tea could be so unpredictable? While it’s generally assumed that coffee packs a bigger caffeine punch than tea, the reality is a bit more complicated.
– For example, did you know that black tea can contain up to 47 milligrams of caffeine per 8-ounce cup?
– Or that Pu-erh tea, a fermented Chinese tea, can even have more caffeine than black tea?
– And then there’s matcha tea, the powdered green tea that’s all the rage these days – it’s got higher levels of caffeine than regular tea too.
Looking for a way to unwind without the buzz of caffeine? Look no further than these tea options!
– First up, we have herbal tea. No caffeine and all natural, it’s perfect for when you want to relax without staying awake all night.
– If you’re looking for something a little more traditional, white tea is a great option. Made from the youngest leaves and buds of the tea plant, it has a lower caffeine content than its green and black counterparts.
– And for a truly unique taste, try rooibos tea. It’s made from the leaves of a South African plant and is completely caffeine-free.
Just remember – brewing time, temperature, and the amount of leaves used can all affect the caffeine content. And your individual factors like body weight and metabolism can also play a role.

Does green tea have less caffeine than black tea?

Do you know what’s not black but has a little lower caffeine than its darker counterpart? Green tea! With an average of 20-45 milligrams of caffeine per 8-ounce cup, it’s the perfect way to get a little boost without getting overly jittery.
Of course, the actual amount of caffeine can vary based on things like brewing time and temperature, but that’s just part of the fun. Plus, green teas have other goodies like L-theanine, which can help balance out any extra energy you may get.

Is there 100% caffeine-free tea?

Did you know that there’s a whole world of herbal tea out there that is 100% naturally caffeine free?
That’s right, no more jitters or sleepless nights thanks to these magical tisanes made from plants other than the tea plant (Camellia sinensis plant).
Get ready to sip on some chamomile, peppermint, rooibos, hibiscus, or ginger tea, all completely free of caffeine. Just be sure to check the ingredients list, because some sneaky blends may still have a little bit of caffeine hiding in there.

What tea keeps you awake without caffeine?

Looking for a way to stay alert without that pesky jolt of caffeine? Check out these herbal teas that can give you a natural boost:
– Yerba mate: Not only does it have caffeine, but it’s also got theobromine and theophylline, which sound like scientists made them up but are actually natural stimulants to help keep you awake.
– Ginseng: This herb can do it all – improve mental performance, reduce fatigue, boost your immune system, and even kick stress and anxiety to the curb.
– Peppermint tea is a fantastic choice, loaded with natural menthol to perk up your focus and digestion.
But if you’re really in need of a boost, why not try some licorice root tea? This delicious drink contains glycyrrhizin, a perfectly natural compound to battle fatigue and even ease digestive discomfort.


Are you a jittery mess after one cup of coffee? Fear not, my friend! There are plenty of teas out there that won’t send you into caffeine overdrive.

White tea, herbal tea, and rooibos tea are all great options for those who want to steer clear of caffeine altogether. Green and oolong tea are also lower in caffeine than traditional black tea, but don’t worry- you’ll still get a little buzz.

Of course, the caffeine content can vary based on how you brew it and what brand you choose. So why not explore the world of low caffeine teas and find your new go-to drink? Just make sure to check with your doctor before making any big changes, because nobody wants to mess with your health!

Helena Tasty

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