Does Barqs have Caffeine? Unveiling the Truth about Barqs Soda

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Does Barqs have Caffeine? Of course yes. When it comes to carbonated beverages, there are countless options available on the market. One popular brand that often grabs the attention of soda enthusiasts is Barqs. Known for its unique flavor and distinctive branding, Barqs has gained a loyal following over the years. However, a frequently asked question among consumers is, “Does Barqs have caffeine?” In this comprehensive article, we will explore the truth behind Barqs soda and its caffeine content. So, grab a can of your favorite soda and join us on this caffeinated journey!

Does Barqs have Caffeine?

Does Barqs have Caffeine?
Does Barqs have Caffeine?

The short answer is, yes, Barqs does contain caffeine. Unlike some other sodas that are marketed as caffeine-free alternatives, Barqs embraces the energizing effects of this popular stimulant. So, if you’re looking for a soda that can provide you with a little pick-me-up, Barqs might just be the right choice for you.

Root Beer And Caffeine

Does Barqs have Caffeine?
Does Barqs have Caffeine?

The history of root beer goes back many centuries. Its roots – pardon the pun – go back to beverages prepared by indigenous American peoples from the sassafras root.

The first root beer to be marketed commercially was made by a pharmacist called Charles Hines. He developed his sassafras-based beverage in 1875, and began selling it the next year.

Hines was teetotal, and originally wanted to call his drink “root tea”. But he was also a canny operator. He knew he’d have a better chance of selling his product to coal miners if he called it beer instead.

Either way, there was no caffeine in the original root beer recipe. But when Barq’s moved into the market, that changed.

Unraveling the Caffeine Content in Barqs

To truly understand the caffeine content in Barqs, let’s take a closer look at the numbers. According to the official nutrition facts provided by The Coca-Cola Company, the maker of Barqs, a 12-fluid ounce serving of Barqs root beer contains approximately 23 milligrams of caffeine. While this amount is significantly lower compared to highly caffeinated beverages like coffee or energy drinks, it is still enough to give you a slight boost of energy.

How Does Barqs Compare to Other Sodas?

If you’re curious about how Barqs stacks up against other popular soda brands in terms of caffeine content, let’s compare it to a few notable contenders:

  1. Coca-Cola: A 12-fluid ounce serving of Coca-Cola contains approximately 34 milligrams of caffeine, slightly more than Barqs.
  2. Pepsi: Similarly, Pepsi, another beloved soda brand, also contains around 34 milligrams of caffeine per 12-fluid ounce serving, putting it on par with Coca-Cola.
  3. Dr Pepper: Moving on to Dr Pepper, this classic soda contains a bit less caffeine, with approximately 41 milligrams per 12-fluid ounce serving.

As you can see, Barqs falls within a similar range of caffeine content as other popular sodas. It offers a moderate amount of caffeine, making it a suitable choice for those looking for a soda with a slight energy boost.

The Invention Of Barq’s Root Beer

Does Barqs have Caffeine?
Does Barqs have Caffeine?

Barq’s came on the scene in 1898 – although the Barq’s website claims it was first bottled in 1871.  Its inventor was Edward Charles Edmond Barq Senior. The unusual surname came courtesy of Edward’s French parents.

He spent his childhood in New Orleans but later moved to Biloxi, Mississippi. It was here that he first formulated his own brand of root beer.

Unlike most other root beers based on sassafras, the Barq’s recipe used sarsaparilla root. It was simply called “Barq’s”, with no mention of root beer on the packaging.

Today, Barq’s is owned by Coca-Cola. “Root beer” is proudly stated on the can, and nowadays you can buy two different versions – original and diet.

So Does Barq’s Have Caffeine?

So if most root beers don’t have caffeine, what about Barq’s? The answer is yes – and no!

Regular Barq’s does have caffeine. There are 22.5 milligrams in each 12-ounce can.

The diet version, on the other hand, is caffeine free. If you want to get the Barq’s flavor without the caffeine kick, that’s the one to buy.

But there are some exceptions to this simple rule. If you’re buying your regular Barq’s from a Coca-Cola Freestyle machine, it’s caffeine free.

That’s because the same basic formula is used in the machines for both the original and diet versions. The only difference is that the original version uses corn syrup, while the diet drink uses the artificial sweetener aspartame.

And if you’re buying your original Barq’s in the US state of Utah, it’s quite likely to be caffeine-free too! That’s because Utah has a high Mormon population who avoid caffeinated drinks.

Why Does Barq’s Contain Caffeine?

Does Barqs have Caffeine?
Does Barqs have Caffeine?

You might be wondering why standard Barq’s generally contains caffeine when most other root beers don’t. There’s no caffeine in the natural ingredients that go into making a root beer. So where does it come from?

FDA regulations governing food and drink labeling have clear rules about this. If a product contains caffeine because it occurs naturally in the ingredients, it doesn’t have to be listed on the label. If you add it in separately, the label has to show it.

Take a look at the Barq’s original root beer label and you’ll find caffeine. It’s there between citric acid and artificial and natural flavors. That’s right – the caffeine is added separately. But why?

The answer certainly isn’t the taste. Despite what some lovers of caffeinated drinks believe, caffeine itself is entirely flavorless.

It is, however, addictive. And it gives you a buzz when you consume it.

Over the years, advertising for Barq’s has hinted at this caffeine hit. In the 1970s, the cathchphrase was “Barq’s got sparks!”. And since 1995, it’s used some clever wordplay in its slogan “Barq’s is the one with bite!”

Like a bite, a mild dose of caffeine can wake you right up. And that caffeine buzz isn’t something you’ll get from most other root beers. That gives Barq’s a unique selling point in the market.

Does Barqs have Caffeine?

The Effects of Caffeine

Caffeine, a natural stimulant, has various effects on the body. When consumed in moderation, it can help increase alertness, improve focus, and provide a temporary energy boost. However, it’s important to note that excessive caffeine intake can lead to side effects such as restlessness, increased heart rate, and difficulty sleeping. Therefore, it’s always advisable to consume caffeinated beverages in moderation and be aware of your personal caffeine tolerance.

FAQs about Barqs and Caffeine

1. Is Barqs caffeine-free?

No, Barqs is not caffeine-free. It does contain a small amount of caffeine, approximately 23 milligrams per 12-fluid ounce serving.

2. Can I drink Barqs if I’m sensitive to caffeine?

If you’re sensitive to caffeine or trying to limit your intake, it’s recommended to consume Barqs in moderation or opt for caffeine-free alternatives.

3. Does Barqs have the same caffeine content in all countries?

Caffeine content may vary slightly depending on the country or region where Barqs is sold. It’s always a good idea to check the nutrition facts on the packaging for accurate information.

4. Are there any other caffeinated flavors of Barqs?

While the original Barqs root beer contains caffeine, there are also other flavors of Barqs soda available, such as Barqs Red Crème Soda, which is typically caffeine-free.

5. Can I mix Barqs with other beverages?

Certainly! Barqs can be mixed with other beverages to create unique and refreshing concoctions. Get creative and experiment with different flavor combinations to find your favorite mix.

6. Is Barqs suitable for children?

As with any caffeinated beverage, it’s generally recommended to limit the consumption of Barqs and similar sodas among children. Parents should consider their child’s age, caffeine sensitivity, and overall dietary habits before allowing them to consume Barqs or any caffeinated beverage.


In conclusion, Barqs does contain caffeine, although in a moderate amount. With approximately 23 milligrams of caffeine per 12-fluid ounce serving, Barqs offers a slight energy boost without overwhelming your system. Whether you’re a fan of the brand or simply curious about its caffeine content, now you have a clear understanding of what to expect from this popular soda. Remember, always consume caffeine in moderation and be aware of its potential effects on your body.

So, the next time someone asks you, “Does Barqs have caffeine?” you can confidently provide them with the answer and share your newfound knowledge about this caffeinated carbonated beverage.

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