McDonald’s Coffee Sizes (Explained)

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Have you ever found yourself standing in line at McDonald’s, overwhelmed by the choices in coffee sizes, unsure of what to order? It can be frustrating not knowing whether a small will leave you yearning for more or if a large will be too much.

Our definitive guide to McDonald’s coffee sizes will solve all your coffee-related dilemmas. In this article, we’re breaking down every size option McDonald’s has to offer, equipping you with the knowledge you need to make the perfect choice for your caffeine cravings. Say goodbye to size confusion, and hello to McDonald’s coffee sizes explained!

Here is a quick summary of the McDonald’s sizes:

  • Small
  • Medium
  • Large
  • Extra Large

What Are The McDonald’s Coffee Sizes?

Let’s dive into the different sizes available. McDonald’s offers four different sizes of coffee: small, medium, large, and extra-large (in select locations).

But did you know that the size of your coffee cup can affect how you perceive the taste of your coffee?

According to a study published in Food Quality and Preference, people tend to rate coffee served in a larger cup as less strong and less flavorful than the coffee served in a smaller cup. So, your coffee cup’s size can impact your coffee experience!

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1. Small Coffee, 12 Ounces

The small size is 12 ounces and is the perfect size for a quick morning pick-me-up. It’s also a great size for those who want to enjoy a cup of coffee without consuming too much caffeine.

But did you know that the small size isn’t always the best value? Sometimes, the medium or large size may be a better deal.

For example, at some McDonald’s locations, the price difference between a small and medium coffee is only a few cents, but the medium coffee is 4 ounces larger!

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2. Medium Coffee, 16 Ounces

The medium size is 16 ounces and is the most popular size at McDonald’s. It’s a great size for people who need more caffeine to get them through the day.

But did you know that the medium size isn’t just for coffee? McDonald’s also offers a medium size for their famous fountain drinks and delicious smoothies.

So, if you’re not in the mood for coffee, you can still enjoy a refreshing beverage in a medium size!

3. Large Coffee, 21 Ounces

The large size is 21 ounces and is great for those who need a lot of caffeine to keep them going. It’s also a great size for sharing with a friend.

But did you know that the large size isn’t the only way to get your caffeine fix at McDonald’s? McDonald’s also offers a variety of espresso-based drinks, such as lattes and cappuccinos, which pack a powerful caffeine punch in a smaller size.

4. Extra Large Coffee, 32 Ounces

The extra-large size is 32 ounces and is only available in select locations. It’s a great size for those who need a lot of caffeine or for sharing with a group.

But did you know that the extra-large size isn’t always the best choice? According to the FDA, the recommended maximum daily caffeine intake for adults is 400 milligrams, which is roughly the amount in four cups of coffee.

So, if you’re planning on drinking an entire 32-ounce cup of coffee, you may want to think twice!

A Brief History of McDonald’s Coffee

Before we dive into the different sizes of McDonald’s coffee, let’s take a moment to explore the history of their coffee offerings.

McDonald’s has been serving coffee since the 1960s, but it wasn’t until the late 1990s that they began to focus on improving the quality of their coffee. At the time, McDonald’s coffee was seen as a cheap and lackluster option, but that was about to change.

In 2001, McDonald’s made a huge investment in their coffee, partnering with Gaviña Gourmet Coffee, a family-owned coffee roaster based in Los Angeles.

This partnership allowed McDonald’s to serve a higher quality, premium roast coffee that was sustainably sourced. The new coffee was a hit with customers and helped to change the perception of McDonald’s coffee.

The Introduction of McCafé

Building on the success of their premium roast coffee, McDonald’s introduced their McCafé line of coffee drinks in 2009.

The line was designed to compete with popular coffee chains like Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts and included a variety of coffee drinks, from lattes to cappuccinos.

The introduction of McCafé was a game-changer for the fast-food industry. It showed that McDonald’s was serious about coffee and was willing to invest in high-quality ingredients and innovative drinks.

The success of McCafé helped to establish McDonald’s as a serious player in the coffee industry.

Evolution of McDonald’s Coffee Offerings

Since the introduction of McCafé, McDonald’s has continued to improve their coffee offerings. They have introduced new flavors and seasonal drinks, like their popular Pumpkin Spice Latte and Peppermint Mocha.

These drinks have become fan favorites and are eagerly anticipated each year.

McDonald’s has also increased their focus on sustainability in recent years. They source their coffee beans from responsible farmers and are committed to reducing their environmental impact.

In 2018, McDonald’s announced that it would be working to make 100% of its coffee, palm oil, and fish products sustainable by 2020.

McDonald’s coffee has come a long way since its early days. From a cheap and lackluster option to premium roast coffee and innovative drinks, McDonald’s has shown they are serious about coffee.

With a focus on sustainability and continued innovation, it will be exciting to see what the future holds for McDonald’s coffee.

Comparing McDonald’s Coffee Sizes to Other Coffee Chains

Now that we’ve explored the different sizes of McDonald’s coffee let’s compare them to other coffee chains.


mcdonalds coffee vs starbucks

Starbucks, founded in Seattle in 1971, has become a household name around the world. They offer a variety of cup sizes at Starbucks, ranging from “short” (8 ounces) to “venti hot” (20 ounces) to “trenta” (31 ounces).

Starbucks also offers seasonal drinks, such as the popular Pumpkin Spice Latte, and has a rewards program for frequent customers.

Dunkin’ Donuts

Dunkin’ Donuts, founded in 1950 in Massachusetts, has become a popular destination for coffee and donuts. They offer a similar size range to McDonald’s, with “small” (10 ounces), “medium” (14 ounces), and “large” (20 ounces).

Dunkin’ Donuts also offers a variety of flavored syrups for customers to customize their drinks, such as hazelnut, caramel, and vanilla. In addition to coffee and donuts, Dunkin’ Donuts also offers breakfast sandwiches and other food items.

Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons, founded in Ontario in 1964, is a popular coffee chain in Canada and has expanded to other countries, such as the United States and the United Arab Emirates. They offer a similar size range to McDonald’s, with “small” (10 ounces), “medium” (14 ounces), and “large” (20 ounces).

They also offer a variety of seasonal drinks and food items, such as the popular “Timbits,” which are bite-sized donuts.

Tim Hortons is also known for their charitable efforts, such as the annual “Camp Day,” where a portion of the proceeds from coffee sales go towards sending kids from low-income families to summer camp.

Customizing Your McDonald’s Coffee Drinks

One of the best things about McDonald’s coffee is the ability to customize your drink. Here are a few ways to make your McDonald’s coffee experience your own:

Flavor Additions

McDonald’s offers a variety of flavor shots, including vanilla, caramel, and hazelnut. But did you know you can also mix and match these flavors to create your unique blend?

For example, try adding a shot of vanilla and hazelnut to your coffee for a delicious, nutty flavor. Or add caramel and vanilla for a sweet and creamy taste.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also try adding a dash of cinnamon or nutmeg to your coffee for a warm and spicy kick.

Milk and Cream Options

McDonald’s offers a variety of milk and cream options, including whole milk, skim milk, and half-and-half. But did you know that you can also ask for a specific amount of milk or cream in your coffee?

For example, if you prefer your coffee on the lighter side, you can ask for just a splash of cream. Or if you like your coffee extra creamy, you can ask for extra cream or whipped cream on top.

If you’re looking for a non-dairy option, McDonald’s offers almond or coconut milk. These options are perfect for those who are lactose intolerant or prefer plant-based milk.


McDonald’s offers a variety of sweeteners, including sugar, Splenda, and Stevia. But did you know you can also ask for a specific amount of sweetener in your coffee? If you prefer your coffee on the sweeter side, you can ask for extra sugar or Splenda.

Or if you’re watching your sugar intake, you can ask for just a half packet of sugar or a few drops of Stevia.

If you’re trying to cut back on sweeteners altogether, you can opt for no sweeteners. This will allow you to taste the natural flavors of the coffee and any added flavor shots.

Coffee Origins

McDonald’s coffee is made with 100% Arabica beans, known for their high quality and rich flavor. But did you know that McDonald’s sources their coffee beans from all over the world?

For example, McDonald’s Premium Roast coffee is made with beans from South America, while their McCafe French Roast is made with beans from Indonesia.

Each region produces coffee beans with unique flavors and characteristics, so try different blends to find your favorite.

Coffee Pairings

McDonald’s coffee pairs well with various breakfast foods, such as the Egg McMuffin or hotcakes. But did you know that coffee can also enhance the flavors of savory foods?

Try pairing your McDonald’s coffee with a burger or fries for a delicious contrast of flavors. The bitterness of the coffee can help cut through the richness of the burger and fries, making for a satisfying meal.

So the next time you stop by McDonald’s for a cup of coffee, remember the different ways to customize your drink. From flavor shots to milk options, there are countless ways to make your McDonald’s coffee experience as unique as you are.

Frequently Asked Questions On Cup Sizes at McDonald’s

How many ounces is a large coffee at McDonald’s?

A 32 ounce cup of coffee at McDonald’s is called an “XL” cup. There are also iced coffee and other drinks that come in the same size cup. Also, McDonald’s has 16-ounce medium-sized coffees and 12-ounce small-sized coffees.

How many Oz is a small McDonald’s coffee?

A small coffee at McDonald’s in the United States contains 12 ounces (approximately 355 milliliters). Please note that this may vary by country and could be subject to changes.

How big is a medium McDonald’s cup?

A medium-sized soft drink cup at McDonald’s in the United States is 16 ounces (approximately 473 milliliters). However, sizes can vary by location and product.

Bottom Line on Cup Sizes at McDonald’s

It’s clear that understanding McDonald’s coffee sizes can enhance your coffee experience, eliminating confusion and helping you customize your caffeine intake to suit your needs. Armed with this newfound knowledge, you can confidently stride into any McDonald’s, ready to order your perfect cup of Joe.

Whether you’re a small cup sipper or a large cup lover, it’s all about choosing the size that brings you the most satisfaction. So next time you find yourself in front of that familiar menu, remember what you’ve learned here. Now, enjoy that well-deserved coffee exactly how you like it.

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