Best energy drink for the money (save big bucks!)

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Raise your hands if you depend on caffeine to kickstart your day.

I know I’m guilty, I usually grab an energy drink or a coffee to help power through. 

But let’s get real, a daily energy drink can quickly add up to a significant monthly expense. 

How can we still get caffeinated without burning a hole in our pockets? 

If you’re here, you’ve probably already calculated how much money you spend on energy drinks on a weekly or monthly basis. That’s a good start, there are plenty of people who grab a $4 can of energy drink every day without even giving a second thought to how much money that is over the course of a year.

Don’t worry, you don’t need to compromise on quality in order to save money on energy drinks.

Read on to discover some of the best energy drinks for the money. I’ll be recommending some good ones for you.

What to look for in an energy drink 

Here are some checklist items I look at when choosing an energy drink that’s gonna be worth my money. 

Ingredients 

• Caffeine 

Caffeine is the most important energy boosting ingredient in any energy drink, so I guess this should be the main thing to look out for.

Depending on what you need that day, you can choose an energy drink with an appropriate amount of caffeine.

Personally, I go for energy drinks that have between 50mg and 100mg of caffeine per serve. That’s what works for me to get a nice energy boost without side effects like jitters, anxiousness or not being able to concentrate because I’m so wired.

According to the FDA, we should limit our daily caffeine intake to no more than 400mg per day

This means that I can drink 2 or 3 servings a day without worrying about overdosing on caffeine

Some energy drinks have crazy amounts of caffeine in them. Read the label and know what you’re drinking. 

• Sugar 

Sugar also contributes to giving you an energy boost when you drink an energy drink. However, sugar is unhealthy and has been linked to various serious diseases, so I recommend you choose an energy drink that has little or no sugar in it. 

Did you know that the maximum daily recommended daily sugar intake for women and men are different? 

Women: 25g or 6 teaspoons 

Men: 37.5g or 9 teaspoons 

That’s according to the American Heart Association

If you lead a healthy lifestyle, consuming a little sugar should not be too worrying as you’ll probably burn it off. But, excessive sugar should be cause for concern for anyone.

Fortunately, there are plenty of great sugar-free energy drinks available these days.

What does all of this mean for the price of your energy drink?

There’s usually no price difference between regular and sugar-free energy drinks, so I recommend that you choose one that is better for you by going for the sugar-free option wherever possible.

• Guarana 

Guarana is derived from a Brazilian fruit. Guarana adds to the caffeine content in energy drinks, and doesn’t do much else.

Think of it as adding extra caffeine to your caffeine.

1g of guarana powder equals 40mg of caffeine.

Sometimes energy drink companies don’t include the caffeine from guarana as part of the total caffeine content, therefore pay attention to the ingredients list, especially if you’re sensitive to caffeine. 

• Taurine 

Taurine is naturally found in meat, fish and dairy products. It’s also present in some energy drinks and can help improve athletic performance.

Several studies have also shown that taurine can also lower blood pressure

Taurine also complements caffeine by enhancing your mental performance. 

• B Vitamins 

B Vitamins are added to energy drinks to give them a range of health benefits.

B vitamins are essential for many bodily functions and you may already be getting a good amount of them if you eat a well balanced diet, but different energy drinks have different combinations of B vitamins in them. 

One thing to keep in mind with regard to B vitamins is that they are water soluble. This means that there is absolutely no benefit from consuming more than 100% of the recommended daily intake of them. 

Anything in excess of what you need is simply flushed out of your body when you next visit the bathroom. 

• BCAAs 

Branched-Chain Amino Acids or BCAAs are quite the trend nowadays and are targeted towards those physically active or gym-goers. This is because BCAAs can help with your muscle growth and soreness while also preventing exercise fatigue. 

BCAAs aren’t commonly present in energy drinks, but there are some on the rise now wholly dedicated to it. If you’re one to work your muscles out, you might want to invest in energy drinks that contain BCAAs. 

piggybank
Save those extra money!

Price 

Other than picking out an energy drink based on the contents, price too plays a factor. Since we’ve identified the important ingredients in energy drinks, you can choose ones that fulfil your needs for a cheaper price

To me, I basically pick one that has a moderate amount of caffeine and preferably sugar free. Based on that, I’ll go for whatever is cheapest. I’m not picky on brand or how they market it. 

I’ve previously wrote an extensive post on the different energy drinks and discussing their ingredients and price among others. You could check that out for more information. 

Availability 

There’s no use staying loyal to a certain energy drink if you have to go to great lengths to get it. Sometimes you want a can of energy drink immediately but there’s no store nearby that sells what you want. 

Of course nowadays with Amazon and its counterpart, you could easily order packs of it and store it at home. I think ordering in bulk is cheaper and saves you more money than if you were to buy a can a day at the store. You could also store a few at your office’s pantry. 

Or, energy drinks nowadays have evolved from cans to sachets. Mix your own energy drinks are a big hit now and also more convenient to carry around and have it anytime. 

What is the average cost of an energy drink?

On average, energy drinks individually would cost about $1.50 to $3.50 per 8 fl. oz can. 

However, purchasing in bulk can enable you to save about 20 – 30 %. That’s better value for money. 

Why are energy drinks expensive?

First and foremost, there’s a huge market for energy drinks. The demand for energy drinks keeps growing, which is why companies are getting more creative nowadays in creating many different types of energy drinks. 

Energy drinks are expensive as the companies have to consider many factors, including: 

• Cost of Production – including testing and market research

• Advertising and marketing

• Distribution

For further explanation on the costs of energy drinks, you can refer to a previous post I’ve written a while ago. 

What drinks can give you energy? 

Caffeinated beverages can give you energy. Coffee, tea, soft drinks and of course energy drinks included. 

Caffeine is a natural psychoactive stimulant that blocks adenosine and increases your norepinephrine and dopamine levels that can lead to an increase in energy levels, mood and better brain functions. 

Other than caffeine, coffee also contains polyphenols, which can help reduce oxidative stress that would enable the body to function better. 

If you’re sensitive towards high amounts of caffeine, how about trying green tea

You’ll get a healthy all-natural energy buzz. For me, I’ll brew my green tea sugar-free and consume it when I’ve to work at night, so that I can still get a good night’s rest later on. 

Do energy drinks really work? 

Yes, energy drinks really work to give you the energy you need. 

This is primarily due to the caffeine content, which works to increase productivity levels by boosting your energy, stamina and concentration.  

Energy drinks can be a great partner for you on many occasions, maybe you’re a student that needs to stay up studying. Or you’re planning to run a half marathon, spoiler alert, energy drinks can help reach the finish line. Don’t worry, there’s one for everyone including the elderly

If you’ve previously had a bad experience with energy drinks, maybe take another look at the caffeine content. If you’re someone with a lower caffeine tolerance, energy drinks with high caffeine might upset you. 

Even if you’re someone with a high caffeine tolerance, try not to drink too much energy drinks in a day.

Remember, moderation is key. 

What’s the strongest energy drink?

The strength of an energy drink depends on its caffeine content. So, the higher caffeine content, the stronger it is. 

I would say energy drinks with more than 300mg of caffeine are pretty strong. It’s also pretty close to the daily 400mg mark, so be careful of your intake. 

Also, a stronger energy drink doesn’t necessarily mean it’s more expensive. So you can get a stronger energy drink for less. 

Red Bull sugar-free is best energy drinks for daily use.
Red Bull might be a great energy drink but the sugar-free version is best for daily use.

Is Red Bull a cheap energy drink? 

A 8.4 fl. oz can of Red Bull costs about $2. Seems pretty cheap and affordable right?

Taking a look at the contents though, it contains 80mg of caffeine, 27g of sugar and 110 calories. 

It may save you money now, but in the long run, it’s gonna take a toll on your health. 

Hang on, I’ll be recommending some good choices that you might want to take a look at. 

How much does Monster Energy Drink cost?

A 16 fl. oz can of Monster Energy Drink costs about $3.20. Seems reasonable for the amount you’re getting. 

It also contains 176mg of caffeine, 54g of sugar and 190 calories. So I guess you’re getting your money’s worth cause they’re definitely not stingy with the amount. 

That was sarcastic, if you didn’t get it. 

My advice, there’s healthier and cheaper options out there for you. 

Best energy drink for the money 

Here are some energy drinks that’s around the $2 price range or less, that I think it’s value for money. At the end, you can compare them yourself and see which one works for you. 

Bang Energy Drink 

Sugar – 0g

Caffeine – 300mg 

Calories – 0

Price – $2.20 per can (16 fl.oz)

Starting with a literal bang, Bang Energy Drink has a crazy amount of caffeine. 300mg definitely qualifies to be in the strong energy drink category. 

Bang Energy Drink usually is preferred by those physically active not only for its high caffeine content but also as it supposedly contains BCAAs as well. 

For the high amount of caffeine, the price range is pretty affordable. It’s also sugar and calorie free, a plus point from me. 

You can purchase it from Amazon.

3D Energy Drink 

Sugar – 0g

Caffeine – 200mg 

Calories – 15

Price – $2.10 per can (16 fl.oz)

Okay maybe 300mg of caffeine might be too much for you, here’s a 200mg option by 3D Energy Drink. It’s also about 10cents cheaper than Bang. 

Still on the sugar-free track but it does contain 15 calories, something you might want to consider. 

You can purchase it from Amazon

Rockstar Energy Drink 

Sugar – 31g

Caffeine – 160mg 

Calories – 140

Price – $1.40 per can (16 fl.oz)

Here’s a cheaper option, with less caffeine but loaded with sugar and calories. I wouldn’t recommend it just for that reason unless you’re maintaining a healthy lifestyle. 

Also remember, consuming a high amount of sugar would only result in an impending sugar-crash afterwards. 

However, there’s Rockstar Zero Carb Energy Drink with zero sugar and calories but with an added caffeine amount of up to 240mg. I guess as there’s no sugar present in it, they’ve to increase the caffeine amount. 

You can purchase it from Amazon.

Mountain Dew Kickstart 

Sugar – 20g

Caffeine – 92mg 

Calories – 80

Price – $1.30 per can (16 fl.oz)

Another cheaper option with less sugar, calories and caffeine compared to Rockstar. 

The sugar amount is still not to my preference as it’s quite near the daily limit, taking into consideration I’ll be eating other food items. 

But fret not, there are 2 sugar-free options, Ultra Energizing Original Dew and Diet Mountain Dew. 

You can purchase it from Amazon.

Xyience Energy Drink 

Sugar – 0g

Caffeine – 176mg 

Calories – 0

Price – $4.30 per can (16 fl.oz)

Yes I know, this isn’t a cheap option. But I would like to bring to your attention that you don’t have to spend a whole lot of money on energy drinks as there are many other options out there with your preferable contents for a much affordable price. 

If you would still like to try Xyience Energy Drink, you can purchase it on Amazon.

REIZE Energy Drink 

REIZE Energy Drink is very convenient.
REIZE is home delivered for your convenience.

Sugar – 0g

Caffeine – 50mg 

Calories – 11

Price – $1 per sachet (powder-form)

Yup, I know what you’re thinking – is this true? 

It sure is. 

For only $1 including shipping right to your door, you can enjoy an energy drink with moderate amount of caffeine that’s also sugar free. 

Reize Energy Drink too contains many added benefits like taurine and B vitamins just for you. 

REIZE comes in powdered form and in a convenient sachet, unlike your conventional ready-to-drink energy drink. Bring a few sachets around with you and mix it anytime, all you need to do is add water, or mix the powder with a drink of your choice. 

What are you waiting for? 

Give REIZE a try for yourself and you might just find that it’s the best energy drink for your money. 

Marty Spargo

I started my own energy drink brand in 2014 and am passionate about educating people about energy drinks so that they can properly understand the ingredients, benefits and risks without being influenced by the marketing messages put out by some brands. You can read my full bio here.

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