McDonalds sweet and iced frappés are a tasty and cheap alternative to similar cold coffee drinks at Starbucks and Biggby. But do these frappés actually have any coffee in them? Or are they more just of a coffee flavored milkshakes?
A frappe is a blended and sweetened iced coffee drink that is almost always has either instant coffee or espresso in it. A McDonalds small Mocha Frappé and medium Caramel Frappé each have about a cup of coffee in them.
In this article I’ll go over what frappés are, the different kinds, and how much coffee and caffeine is in them. Let's get into it!
What is a Frappe?
A frappe is a greek iced coffee drink that is made by blending, shaking, or beating instant coffee, sugar, and water to create a drink with a foamy and frothy consistency. Frappes are served cold and oftentimes flavored with sugars and syrups and topped with a layer of whip cream.
The word frappe (fra-pay) actually means “ice” in French, and in the mid 1800’s was used to talk about any partially frozen drink. It wasn’t until 1957 that someone tried creating a frappe with instant coffee and created the first edition of the popular coffee drink that we have today.
While the world’s biggest coffee chain “Starbucks” has created their own trademarked version of the frappe called a “frappuccino,” the most popular place to get a traditional frappe nowadays is actually Mcdonalds! Their two most popular are the Caramel Frappé and the Mocha Frappé
McDonalds also sells bottled frappes in stores, you can get them in Mocha, Caramel, and Vanilla flavor.
Does a Frappe Have Coffee In It?
Most of the time when we think about frappés, we think about them as coffee drinks. But do they actually have any coffee in them? Or are they just a sugary milkshake with coffee flavoring?
Almost all frappes do have coffee in them, since a normal frappe is made by combining ice cubes, milk, strong instant coffee or espresso, a little water, and some flavoring in a blender.
The amount of coffee in a frappe is adjustable depending on how much instant coffee or espresso versus ice and milk the brewer wants to use. But most will not have a ton of coffee since frappes are more a milkshake than a primarily coffee drink.
How Much Coffee is in a Frappé
All McDonalds says about the amount of coffee in their frappés is that they have a “hint of coffee” in them.
So since McDonalds doesn’t say how much coffee is in their frappés and the information isn’t available online, I’ve attempted to approximate the amount of coffee in McDonalds Frappés by using the amount of caffeine they have (via CaffeineInformer) and comparing it to a regular cup of coffee.
So since a cup of coffee has about 95mg of caffeine in it, if a frappé has 95mg of caffeine in it I’ve estimated that it has 1 cup of coffee in it.
I’ve separated the Mocha Frappé from all the other frappé flavors since the Mocha has significantly more caffeine.
The Amount of Coffee in McDonalds Frappés
Small - 1 Cup of Coffee
Medium - 1.3 Cups of Coffee
Large - 2 Cups of Coffee
Other Frappé Flavors
Small - 0.8 Cups of Coffee
Medium - 1 Cup of Coffee
Large - 1.4 Cups of Coffee
How Much Caffeine is in a Frappe
After learning about how much coffee is in a frappe, your also probably curious about the amount of caffeine.
So how much caffeine is in a frappe?
Well the amount of caffeine in a frappe will vary dramatically depending on how much coffee is used when it's made. But since we do know the amount of caffeine in McDonalds frappes, we can assume that frappes made by other coffee shops or restaurants are pretty similar.
For reference, an average cup of coffee has 95mg of caffeine.
The Amount of Caffeine in McDonalds Frappés
Small - 100mg
Medium - 125mg
Large - 180mg
Other Frappé Flavors
Small - 75mg
Medium - 90mg
Large - 130mg
Although McDonalds frappés and frappés in general are mostly made of ice, sugar, and milk, they will usually have some amount of instant coffee in them. I actually was surprised at how much caffeine is in McDonalds frappés since I just assumed they were more of a coffee flavored drink than actually coffee.
I hope this article was helpful for you! If you’d like to learn more about McDonalds coffee, frappés, and just coffee in general, be sure to check out the rest of my website!