From coffee-to-go to lattes, millions of people rely on caffeine for a morning and afternoon pick me up. But while there are many different types of coffee available that can serve as an energy drink alternative, not all offer the same kind of high you’re looking for.
Whether you have an all-nighter coming up or just need a little pick me up this afternoon, nothing beats an energy drink to give you the boost of vitality to make it.
Without further ado, if you are in need of a tasty energy drink to give you that extra boost for an important meeting or exam, then this is the place! Below are some wonderful options ranked according to taste. They all have their advantages and disadvantages but they will always leave you with a great feeling afterward.
Best Energy Drinks To Power You For The Week
1. Redbull Energy Drink
It’s the number 1 go-to drink for anyone who wants an instant chemical energy boost. Redbull has the usual caffeine, sugars, and taurine.
It’s been dubbed the most popular energy drink since its conception in 1976 under a different name, Red Gaur. Red Bull has different ingredients depending on the country where it is made.
Redbull contains B vitamins to help metabolize glucose and fuel cells to deliver more energy to different parts of the body. It has enough sugar to provide consistent glucose, although Redbull has gone into making sugar-free variants of the energy drink.
In the sugar-free variants of Redbull, aspartame and other artificial sweeteners are used.
As for health concerns, Redbull doesn’t cause any side effects unless an individual is caffeine sensitive. A 250 ml can of Redbull contains a maximum of 80 mg of caffeine, which is well below the maximum daily caffeine intake for an individual (400 mg).
2. Rockstar Energy Drink
Rockstar has made several energy drinks for sportsmen and casual daily energy drinkers. One of the best tasting and guilt-free energy drinks they have is the Rockstar Pure Zero Energy Drink.
This energy drink is for individuals who don’t want extra sugar and just want a clean hit of caffeine. Each can of the Rockstar Pure Zero Energy Drink contains 240 mg of caffeine which is over half of the RDA.
The Rockstar Pure Zero Energy Drink comes in different flavors so you don’t get sick of a single variety. For nutritional content, the Rockstar Pure Zero Energy Drink contains 100 mg of taurine for improved brain activity and contains only 10 calories in total.
3. Monster Energy Drink
Monster is the second most popular energy drink in the world, second to Redbull. It’s popular among younger individuals, notably in the esports industry. Taste-wise, Monster Energy drinks are sweeter compared to the first two brands mentioned on this list.
They’ve made sugar-free versions to appeal to a much wider audience, but the energy boost it gives is more or less the same.
Each can of a Monster Energy drink contains two grams of carbohydrates, but it has 180g of saturated fat. There’s 70 mg of caffeine in each can, well below the maximum daily intake of 400 mg. It contains a lot of B vitamins, especially Vit B3, B5, and B6.
Monster Energy Zero Ultra, it’s sugar-free so the nutritional label might be different than the standard Monster Energy drink.
4. Reign Energy Drink
Reign is popular because of its fruit-flavored energy drinks. Each can of Reign Energy drink contains 100 mg of sodium, which is nothing compared to the RDA of 2300 mg, so you can drink Reign without worrying about your sodium intake.
For the Reign Melon Mania flavor, it has 35 mg of potassium and just a gram of carbohydrate. Vit B3, B6, and B12 have 50% RDA, but each can of Reign is actually two servings, so you still get 100% RDA for the B Vitamins.
Reign also has BCAA’s, or amino acids, that help with muscle recovery. It’s a good energy drink for people who lead active lifestyles, or those who spend a portion of their time dedicated to fitness if they’re not working in their office.
Just like other energy drinks on this list, Reign has enough electrolytes to help with hydration.
5. Bang Energy Drink
Bang energy drinks are like Reign since they contain zero sugar, and contain healthy amounts of sodium and potassium. A 16-oz can of Bang contains BCAA’s, creatines, and 300 mg of caffeine.
This means you can only drink one can of Bang before you go over the maximum daily intake for caffeine.
Despite being zero sugar, Bang still tastes palatable due to artificial sweeteners. The main contributor for the taste is sucralose.
Bang is good for anyone who has difficulty getting focused on their task, although the amount of caffeine means you should take this only at the time your performance is at its lowest (e.g. you’re sleepy in the afternoon).
6. NOS Energy Drink
NOS is an energy drink formerly owned by the Coca-cola company. They’re owned by Monster Energy but the ingredients remain the same. They’re distributed in 16 and 24 oz cans and were primarily marketed towards the motorsports industry.
Each can of NOS contains 160 mg of caffeine. It also contains the standard taurine found in other energy drinks, and Vitamin B6 and B12 necessary for nerve and brain function.
NOS comes in a variety of flavors like GT Grape, cherry, nitro mango, citrus, sonic sour, and many more. Unfortunately, since its acquisition by Monster Beverages, it has discontinued the production of some of the flavors.
This leaves NOS Original, NOS GT Grape, Nitro Mango, Sonic Sour, and NOS Turbo as the only available flavors.
7. Mountain Dew Energy Drink
Mountain Dew’s first energy drink was Amp. This energy drink was introduced in 2001 and it was sold to customers from the US, UK, and Canada.
The Amp energy drink has ingredients common to most products in the same category: taurine, caffeine, B vitamins, with the exception of ginseng and guarana.
Mountain Dew’s Amp energy drink originally had two flavors, Orange and Mixed Berry, but it has since then expanded into other varieties like cherry, grape, lemonade, and watermelon. Amp Energy drink also had a sugar-free version.
The caffeine content of each Amp energy drink is almost 150 mg. The UK variant of Amp Energy contains real sugar as is the tradition of most energy drinks made or distributed in the UK.
8. No Fear Energy Drink
Although they’re more known as a clothing brand, No Fear actually made an energy drink in collaboration with SoBe. No Fear Energy Drink sponsored WEC (World Extreme Cagefighting, similar to UFC) and fighter Urijah Faber.
They also sometimes sponsor NASCAR and Philippines-based boxing Team Pacquaio. The No Fear energy drink is served in 16 and 24 oz cans. For the 16 oz can, it contained 182 mg of caffeine, which is still below half of the maximum RDA.
They’re still being sold in the UK and they’re not as popular in the US due to strong competition from newer brands like Monster Energy and Rockstar. They’re still distributed in Tempe, AZ by beverage company Shadow Beverages.
As for the nutritional content, No Fear’s Motherload contains high amounts of vitamins. Vitamins C, and B vitamins reach over 600% of the RDA, with taurine at 2000 mg.
This might not be the best No Fear energy drink variant for beginners, but it’s perfect for anyone who has built a tolerance for energy drinks and caffeine.
9. Raze Energy Drink
It’s not among the most popular energy drinks but Raze is one of the best tasting, understated brands. The makers of this energy drink claim that Raze gives the energy boost without the jitters and the crashes associated with caffeine-loaded and sugar-pumped energy drinks.
Each can of Raze contains BCAA’s and time-released caffeine. The time-released caffeine makes it easy for the body to acclimate to the amount of stimulant that circulates the body.
Raze also contains no sugar but it has artificial sweeteners for the taste. There are also electrolytes that help the body rehydrate, making this a perfect drink for both office workers and fitness enthusiasts.
Each can of Raze contains 55 mg of potassium and 15 mg of sodium, making it a healthier option than the other drinks on this list. Although it has 300 mg of caffeine, it’s on a slow-release mechanism which means you don’t crash after chugging a can.
10. G Fuel Energy Drink
This energy drink is marketed towards esports players and gamers. It almost has the same formulation as Raze, with 55 mg of sodium, but with a higher potassium content of 210 mg.
One can of G Fuel is 473 mL and contains 300 mg of caffeine. It’s a zero-calorie drink and won’t fatten you up.
G Fuel also has B vitamins and ascorbic acid, with the latter providing 50% of the RDA. G Fuel is available in Rainbow Sherbet flavor and they also sell energy drinks in the form of powders.
Their Fazeberry formulation is a powder-version of Gatorade – it doesn’t contain caffeine but it has tons of electrolytes that help rehydrate your body after an intense workout or gaming session.
Energy drinks function like coffee and should always be consumed in moderation. These also contain ridiculous amounts of sugar necessary to fuel energy-intensive activities.
The best way to counter excess sugars and caffeine would be to drink a lot of water to help flush out the excess chemicals from your body. Side effects of excessive energy drinks include insomnia, nervousness, palpitations, and in severe cases, brain and nerve damage.
Founder, Editor-In-Chief // A native Angeleno. John studied engineering at UCLA; founded Schmoozd, an offline social tech networking event in LA with 30,000 subs; ran a startup accelerator (StartEngine). Worked for several major brands like Toyota, DIRECTV, Hitachi, ICANN, and Raytheon. A mentor at Loyola Marymount University (LMU) Entrepreneur School, Dr. David Choi. And advises a dozen local LA startups building amazing tech in various industries; and invested in some. // Let's Connect: firstname.lastname@example.org