Does Big Red Soda Have Caffeine? – Barista HQ

All my friends know that I am a cream soda fiend, so when some Texan pals brought Big Red up for a barbeque, I was so excited to try it.

I loved the smooth and fruity vanilla flavor, but I had to wonder: does Big Red have caffeine?

Planning a trip to the Lone Star State? Let me break down the caffeine content of a Big Red can so you can sip with ease.

Caffeine In Big Red

A 12 fl oz can of Big Red contains around 36 mg of caffeine or 2.83 mg of caffeine per fl oz.[1]

This is on the low end of the spectrum in terms of caffeine content but about average for sodas.

It can be hard to know how much caffeine is in your portion, so knowing the fl oz level can help you manage your caffeine intake and avoid drinking over 400 mg in one day.

Caffeine In Big Red Zero

A Zero Sugar Big Red has slightly more caffeine than the original, coming in at 39 mg of caffeine per 12 fl oz serving. This comes to around 3.25 mg of caffeine per fl oz.[2]

Big Red Soda In Glass Cups

Big Red Soda Caffeine By Serving Size

You can get a Big Red soda in seven different sizes and at some Slushie or soda fountains.

Zero Sugar is typically available in five different sizes as well as slushie and soda fountain versions. Because there are so many sizes, the caffeine content of each drink varies.

Here is a table breaking down the caffeine content of a few of the sizes.



(12oz Can)


(16.9oz Small Bottle)


(20 fl oz Large Bottle)


(2-Liter Xtra Large Bottle)

Big Red

36 mg

51 mg

61 mg

204 mg

Big Red Zero

39 mg

55 mg

65 mg

221 mg

All About Big Red Soda (What's In It?)

Big Red


Just what goes into making this popular soft drink taste so refreshing? The ingredients found in an original Big Red are:

  • Carbonated water
  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Citric acid
  • Caffeine
  • Natural and artificial flavors
  • Red 40
  • Caramel color

An original Big Red flavor 12 fl oz soft drink has the following nutritional information:

  • Calories - 160
  • Fat - 0g
  • Sodium - 40mg
  • Carbs - 44g
  • Sugars - 43g
  • Protein - 0g
Woman Opening A Can Of Big Red Soda

Big Red Zero


A 12 fl oz Big Red Zero Sugar has slightly different ingredients than the original as it replaces the high fructose corn syrup with sucralose sweetener.

  • Carbonated water
  • Sodium benzoate
  • Sucralose
  • Citric acid
  • Natural and artificial flavors
  • Caffeine
  • Phosphoric acid
  • Red 40
  • Acesulfame potassium
  • Aspartame
  • Caramel color

The Zero Sugar also contains the following nutritional information:

  • Calories - 0
  • Fat - 0g
  • Sodium - 55mg
  • Carbs - 0g
  • Sugars - 0g
  • Protein - 0g
Big Red Zero Outdoor Lifestyle

Big Red Soda Caffeine Content Vs Other Soda

Now that we know exactly how much caffeine is in bottles of Big Red soda let's see how it compares to other sodas and other beverages on the market.

Caffeine In Big Red Vs Mountain Dew

A 12 fl oz serving of Mountain Dew contains around 54 mg of caffeine, which is much higher than a same-size Big Red soda serving.

Caffeine In Big Red Vs Coke

A Coca-Cola has around 32 mg of caffeine per 12 fl oz can, which is slightly less than a similar serving of Big Red. However, Diet Coke has 46 mg, which is much higher than a can of Big Red.

Caffeine In Big Red Vs Dr. Pepper

I love Dr. Pepper soft drinks but was shocked to discover that a 12 fl oz serving contains 41 mg - only a couple of mg higher than a Big Red soda.

Caffeine In Big Red Vs Pepsi

A Pepsi contains around 38 mg of caffeine, which is only a little more than a Big Red.

Group Of People Getting BIg Red Soda From A Cooler

What Are Some Alternatives To Big Red Soda?

As great as soda is, it is still a carbonated beverage.

The combination of caffeine, sugar, and bubbles in a caffeinated beverage like Big Red can cause health issues if you consume too much of it, like sleeplessness, tooth decay, and weight gain.[3]

If you are not feeling like indulging in the unique flavor and bright red color of a Big Red, there are plenty of other drinks and beverages to hydrate you.

If you are looking for a healthier option, I recommend trying one of these instead.

  • Filtered water mixed with fruit (I love adding orange and cherry to mine)
  • Sparkling water mixed with fruit for a sweet twist and added vitamins
  • Homemade iced tea
  • Milk
  • Coconut water
  • Kombucha
  • Iced coffee

Related Big Red Soda Questions

Does Big Red have more caffeine than coffee?

A Big Red does not contain more caffeine than coffee. The average cup of coffee contains around 80-100 mg of caffeine, which is three times the amount found in a 12 fl oz serving of Big Red.[4]

Is Big Red addictive?

Big Red is not technically addictive in terms of its ingredients, but some people cannot get enough of that bubble gum cream soda taste. It has been a popular cream soda alternative since the 30s, after all! Like all soda, it is best to enjoy the fruity taste and bright red color of Big Red in moderation.

Is Big Red good for hangovers?

Whether Big Red is good for hangovers depends on the person. The best cure for a hangover is typically water or an electrolyte drink, but the bubbles in Big Red can help ease any nausea your hangover may bring relief.

Does Big Red have acid?

Big Red does contain citric acid, which is pretty common for fruity sodas and other soda brands.


Overall, both Zero Sugar and Original Big Red contain a low amount of caffeine per serving.

After trying Big Red Soda for myself, I can see why it has such a loyal fan base.

I highly recommend trying some for yourself if you are a fellow cream soda lover or want something unique compared to other sodas.



Chloe Page

Chloe Page

A lifelong mocha fan, Chloe is an award-winning writer with over eight years’ experience weaving words. You can typically find Chloe sipping on Bird and Blend tea while scribbling in a notebook.

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