Top 10 Best Caffeine Pills • (2024 Reviews + Buyer’s Guide)

Last Updated Feb 15, 2024

Before I started drinking green tea to boost my productivity, I shied away from caffeine. Coffee always gave me jitters and spiked my anxiety. Once I realized I’m able to experience the beloved caffeine rush minus the jitters and crash by drinking green tea, my life changed! Upgrade city! Welcome to my guide to choosing the best caffeine pills.

We’re lucky to live in a time when technology has evolved our available supplements to superstardom. Long gone are the days of dangerous supplements with nasty side effects. Yes, they still exist, but there are certainly much safer options available.

Top 10 Best Caffeine Pills & Supplements

Brand Ingredients & Highlights
#1) Genius Caffeine
  • Genius Caffeine is my #1 overall pick and the best caffeine for weight loss currently on the market
  • Stacks well with other Genius supplements for enhanced weight loss, such as Genius Fat Burner
  • NEWCAFF™ (Microencapsulated ER Caffeine)(providing 100 mg of caffeine)
  • Boost metabolism, enhance alertness, laser focus, and improve concentration
  • Sustained, controlled release to prevent the dreaded caffeine crash
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-8 hours per dose
  • Vegetarian Capsules (100 per bottle)
  • 100% Money-Back Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Suggested Use: Take 1-2 capsules up to three times daily, allow 3 to 4 hours to pass between servings to assess your tolerance
#2) Sports Research L-Theanine & Caffeine
  • The best caffeine pills for focus
  • L-Theanine is the amino acid in green tea that improves focus, cuts out jitters, and prevents a crash
  • L-Theanine (as AlphaWave®) – 200 mg
  • Caffeine (as PurCaf® from Organic Green Coffee Beans) – 100 mg
  • Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) (From Coconuts) – 500 mg
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-6 hours per dose
  • 90-Day Money-Back Guarantee
  • Non-GMO, Keto & Paleo Certified
  • Suggested Use: Take 1 Liquid Softgel with food, do not exceed more than 2 softgels per day
#3) ProLab Caffeine
  • The best cheap caffeine pills
  • A whopping 200 mg of caffeine per tablet for a very affordable price
  • Calcium (from Dibasic Calcium Phosphate) – 75 mg
  • Caffeine – 200 mg
  • Greatest Advantage: the effects kick in as little as 15 minutes
  • Good choice for weight loss, enhanced focus, and to combat fatigue
  • Energy boost typically lasts 5-7 hours per dose
  • Suggested Use: 1 tablet up to 3 times daily, wait for 3 to 4 hours between tablets, do not exceed 3 per day
#4) Smarter Vitamins Caffeine + Maca
  • The best caffeine pills for a workout
  • Maca is one of my favorite herbs of them all to improve energy and skyrocket vitality
  • Caffeine – 200 mg
  • Organic MACA Root Powder – 250 mg
  • Medium Chain Triglycerides (From Coconuts) – 477 mg
  • The ideal choice for men and women who want to boost performance in the gym with an all-in-1 supplement (an effective pre-workout supp)
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-5 hours per dose
  • Suggested Use: 1 softgel up to 3 times daily with or without food, do not exceed 3 per day
#5) NutraChamps Focused Energy
  • The best caffeine pills for studying
  • A unique blend of caffeine, L-Theanine, and Argentinian-favorite yerba mate
  • Natural Caffeine (from coffee beans) – 150 mg
  • L-Theanine (from green tea leaves) – 200 mg
  • Yerba Mate (leaves) – 25 mg
  • My favorite aspect of this caffeine supplement is the L-Theanine derived from green tea with an extra kick of yerba mate, which also contains caffeine
  • Energy boost typically lasts 3-8 hours per dose
  • Non-GMO, Vegan, Made in the USA, Veggie Capsules
  • 100% Money-Back Satisfaction Guarantee
  • Suggested Use: 1 capsule when desired, do not exceed 4 capsules per day
#6) Bulk Supplements Caffeine Capsules
  • My #1 Bulk Pick
  • I’ve used Bulk Supplements’ products extensively over the past 5 years, and they always deliver for the best price
  • Available in vegetarian and gelatin capsules, up to 300 capsules per order
  • Caffeine Anhydrous – 200 mg
  • Energy boost typically lasts 3-6 hours per dose
  • No Fillers and Lab-Tested Quality & Purity
  • Suggested Use: 1 capsule with water, do not exceed 3 capsules per day, allow 3 to 4 hours to pass between doses
#7) Mutant Caffeine
  • My #1 Budget Pick
  • Mutant Caffeine is ridiculously cheap for 240 tablets of pharmaceutical-grade caffeine
  • Great for bodybuilders, athletes, and anyone seeking a clean caffeine boost
  • Caffeine Anhydrous (USP) – 200 mg
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-6 hours per dose
  • Small, easy-t0-swallow tablets
  • Suggested Use: 1 tablet per day, drink extra water to stay hydrated
#8) MuscleTech Platinum Caffeine
  • The preferred choice of weightlifters
  • Made by one of my all-time favorite bodybuilding supplement companies
  • A hefty 220 mg dose of 100% pure caffeine per tablet
  • Caffeine anhydrous – 220 mg
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-6 hours per dose
  • Kicks in fast
  • Suggested Use: Take 1/2 tablet to assess tolerance. After assessing tolerance, take 1 serving with water up to 2 times daily, drink 8 to 10 glasses of water on the days you take Platinum Caffeine
#9) Vivarin Functional Caffeine®
  • My #1 Pick for Alertness
  • One of the most trusted caffeine supplement brands and best No Doz alternatives
  • Caffeine – 200 mg
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-8 hours per dose
  • Each tablet is equivalent to about 1 cup of coffee, made to kick in quickly
  • Suggested Use: No more than 1 tablet every 3 to 4 hours
#10) VitalFuse Fused Focus
  • A Top-Rated Caffeinated Nootropic
  • Fused Focus blends caffeine with effective nootropics Bacopa, Gingko, Theacrine, and Alpha-GPC to supercharge cognitive function
  • Caffeine Anhydrous – 150 mg
  • Bacopa Extract (20% Bacosides)(whole plant) – 300 mg
  • Theacrine (as TeaCrine®) – 65 mg
  • Alpha-GPC 20% – 50 mg
  • Bilberry Fruit powder – 35 mg
  • Gingko Biloba (24% Gingko Flavone Glycosides)(leaf) – 25 mg
  • Energy boost typically lasts 4-6 hours per dose
  • Longer-lasting than inferior caffeine pills that merely provide a quick jolt of energy
  • Suggested Use: 2 capsules per day 30 minutes before a meal with a full glass of water

Reviews & Buyer’s Guide

Now that you know the top 10 best caffeine pills currently on the market, let’s take a closer look at several of the supplements in my Top 10. In each review, I share the pros and cons reported by current users along with my opinion.

After the reviews, I go over how to take caffeine pills to get the best effect and several important considerations to make before you choose the best caffeine supplement for you.

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Genius Caffeine Review

Genius Brand is one of my favorite supplement companies going right now. Genius manufactures a wide range of supplements with a focus on boosting cognitive function. Since nootropics are the craze right now, Genius Brand is the perfect match for our time.

All Genius supplements contain top-notch trademarked ingredients in researched doses. Almost all Genius supplements are highly-rated and loved by current users. The one drawback is the prevalence of side effects since Genius tends to cram a long list of ingredients into each blend.

The good news is that Genius Caffeine is simply microencapsulated extended-release caffeine, and that’s it. Genius Caffeine is the most reliable caffeine in my Top 10 and the perfect choice for an effective weight loss regimen.

  • While most users do not experience side effects, you may experience headaches, a mild crash with brain fog, stomach pains, bloating, sleepiness, flu-like symptoms, insomnia, dizziness and dry mouth
  • Depending on how your body reacts to this supplement, you may experience little to no effect
  • One of the greatest advantages of Genius Caffeine is how well it stacks with other supplements such as fat burners, appetite suppressants, diet pills, or non-caffeinated nootropics
  • If you’re an experienced caffeine user, you may feel that the energy you get from Genius Caffeine is smoother than what you’ve felt before
  • Enhanced, long-lasting focus without the crash
  • A more than suitable replacement for popular energy drinks such as Rockstar and Monster
  • A steady supply of energy throughout the day
  • An excellent choice to stack with Genius Pre to supercharge your workout
  • No jitters or side effects for a vast majority of users

ProLab Caffeine Review

ProLab Caffeine is a good ol’ fashioned caffeine pill for a cheap price. In my opinion, it’s one of the best No Doz alternatives currently on the market. The greatest selling point for ProLab Caffeine is how quickly it takes effect. According to ProLab, the energy boost is near-instant and starts in as little as 15 minutes.

Unlike Genius Caffeine, ProLab Caffeine is not microencapsulated, meaning it kicks in – and may wear off – faster depending on how you react to it.

ProLab is best suited for people who work long hours or want a caffeine supplement that kicks in right away when they feel drowsy and need to wake up quickly.

  • The tablets don’t work for everyone, particularly experienced caffeine users
  • Keep in mind, this is a powerful caffeine pill that kicks in quickly, you may experience jitters, crash, anxiousness, irritability, depression later, nausea, and several other common caffeine side effects
  • There may be quality control issues
  • You may like ProLab caffeine more than coffee, especially because of the convenience factor
  • Save money compared to buying coffee or expensive energy drinks to get the same effect
  • An effective appetite suppressant for users engaged in a weight-loss regimen
  • An extended jolt of energy without the crash
  • Easy to break the tablet to control the dose
  • An excellent choice for unplanned situations that require near-instant energy

Smarter Vitamins Caffeine Review

Smarter Vitamins caffeine is available in two varieties: Caffeine + MACA and Caffeine + L-Theanine. I’m a bigger fan of the Maca variety since Smarter Vitamins is the only brand I know of that combines the amazing power of Maca with Caffeine.

I began taking Maca back in 2014 and haven’t looked back. To me, it’s the Vitamin C of invigorating herbs because it blends incredibly well with other energizing supplements.

The combination of Maca and caffeine in this blend by Smart Vitamins makes this formula the clear best caffeine pill for a workout.

Maca boosts vitality and strength while caffeine boosts energy, focus, and alertness. What more could you ask for from a pre-workout caffeine supplement?

  • A small percentage of people won’t feel any effects
  • Depending on how you react to caffeine, you may become drowsy
  • All-day energy with laser focus
  • A sustained energy boost for 5 hours or more, an ideal pre-workout supplement
  • Married men may feel more virile on this supplement, leading to happier wives
  • Feelings of well-being instead of the jittery feeling that often accompanies an inferior caffeine rush
  • A healthier substitute for caffeinated energy drinks such as Monster
  • Save money compared to buying separate caffeine and Maca supplements

Mutant Caffeine Review

Mutant is a lesser-known bodybuilding supplement company with a solid supplement lineup. One thing I love about Mutant supplements is that they’re always priced right. Mutant is in the business of providing high-quality, clean supplements for the most affordable prices.

Why pay more for the same caffeine anhydrous when Mutant sells pharmaceutical-grade caffeine anhydrous for a lower price? Mutant’s and Bulk Supplements’ caffeine pills are the best budget options in my Top 10 for weightlifters and bodybuilders.

  • If you tried several caffeine pill brands before, you may not like these the most
  • Not time release
  • Small, easy-to-swallow tablets
  • Unbeatable price for 240 tabs
  • Easy to break the tab into smaller doses
  • Pharmaceutical-grade clean caffeine anhydrous
  • Great for anyone seeking a smooth caffeine energy boost, not just for bodybuilders
  • Helps to regulate weight
  • More alertness without the crash and does not affect sleep at night
  • No jitters, yet a powerful effect

MuscleTech Platinum Caffeine Review

MuscleTech Platinum Caffeine offers the highest dose of caffeine per serving at 220 mg. Muscletech is one of the more reliable supplement brands in the fitness industry and is most well-known for its line of protein powders.

Unlike several of the other formulas in my Top 10, Muscle Tech Platinum Caffeine is a straightforward caffeine supplement with caffeine anhydrous as the only key ingredient.

If you’re a fan of vegetarian capsules, you may want to skip Platinum Caffeine and reach for Genius Caffeine or another vegetarian alternative.

What I like about Platinum Caffeine is that the tablets are easy to break, and since the dose per tablet is larger than other caffeine pills, it’s advantageous to split one tablet into several doses for a more sustained release throughout the day.

  • You may notice that the effects take longer to kick in than other caffeine pills
  • They may not give you the energizing effect you’re seeking
  • There are more affordable alternatives
  • No jitters or nausea even with the higher dose
  • A worthy coffee alternative to get going in the morning
  • Improved Focus
  • Save money compared to buying energy drinks
  • No nasty side effects
  • A superb supplement for people engaged in a weight loss regimen who want to burn more calories
  • More Alertness
  • No Crash
  • Effective as a pre-workout supplement on its own

Vivarin Caffeine Pills Review

Vivarin is a safe and effective No-Doz alternative. It’s intended for people who need to wake up fast. For example, if you’re the designated driver one night and feeling sleepy, Vivarin comes to the rescue. It’s also great for truckers and anyone taking a long drive who wants to stay alert.

My biggest qualm with Vivarin is the number of inactive ingredients such as FD&C yellow #6. Depending on how you feel about this type of ingredient, you may want to skip Vivarin.

However, if you’re looking for a reliable caffeine pill that boosts alertness in a hurry, it’s hard to beat Vivarin.

  • Vivarin 200 mg tablets are pricier than other brands in my Top 10
  • Some users reported headaches, anxiety, trouble sleeping, and chest tightness
  • They may not work as well for you as Jet-Alert or No-Doz
  • A vast majority of users prefer Vivarin over other brands and consider them to be the best coffee alternative
  • Smooth energy with no trouble falling asleep at night
  • Great for travel and to take anywhere on the go
  • Alertness without jitters
  • Approved by users working graveyard shifts
  • Save money compared to buying coffee every day
  • Consistent quality and effects

Fused Focus Review

Last but not least is VitalFuse Fused Focus, a nootropic/caffeine blend with a potent 150 mg dose of caffeine anhydrous. The greatest advantage of Fused Focus is the addition of TeaCrine®. TeaCrine is a patent-pending form of pure theacrine that provides an all-natural energy burst.

The cool part is theacrine is not considered a stimulant, which means if TeaCrine® treats you right, there’s no need to worry about an increased heart rate and blood pressure that stimulants produce.

VitalFuse is so confident that the combination of TeaCrine and caffeine anhydrous will produce longer-lasting effects than caffeine alone that the company backs Fused Focus with a money-back satisfaction guarantee.

  • The Bacopa Extract in the formula may cancel out the energizing effect of the caffeine + TeaCrine for some users
  • TeaCrine does not work for everyone
  • Headaches, nausea, dizziness and stomach pains are reported side effects
  • All-day clean energy without the crash
  • Enhanced focus and feelings of well-being
  • The advertised 4-6 hours of energy is the real deal and consistent
  • Comparable effect to energy drinks that improve focus for a reduced cost and no jitters
  • People with hectic schedules are loving the mental edge they get from Fused Focus
  • No next-day hangover
  • Approved by runners as a coffee alternative
  • A solid choice for long study sessions

How to Take Caffeine Pills

This section is very important because the last thing you want to do is take too much caffeine or experience the negative side effects. Believe me, I’ve been on the wrong side of the fence with a panic attack when I was younger, and it’s not something I ever want to do again.

The best “suggested use” instructions of all the caffeine supplements in my Top 10 are by MuscleTech.

Step #1 Assess Your Tolerance

This is the most important step. If you choose a caffeine pill with 150 mg of caffeine per tablet or more, it’s always a good idea to assess your tolerance first. You may want to err on the side of caution and start with 1/4 tablet instead of 1/2 and work your way up in 1/4 increments until reaching a full tablet.

By following this step, you give yourself the best possible chance of avoiding nasty side effects such as anxiety. The people who learned their lesson the hard way skipped this step. Don’t skip this step!

Step #2 Allow Time to Pass Between Doses

Another mistake I see people make is taking another dose too soon after the first dose. They may think that the first dose didn’t work when in reality it had yet to take effect. This leads to a double dose and an increased risk of experiencing jitters.

Most brands recommend waiting 3-4 hours between doses. Step #2 is even more important during the initial tolerance assessment period.

Step #3 Limit Your Daily Dose

Building a caffeine dependency and tolerance is never a good idea. If you allow yourself to up the daily dose beyond 400 mg daily, you enter riskier waters.

I went through caffeine withdrawal a few times, and it’s depressing. I end up sleeping for days straight. The key here is to be responsible because caffeine is no joke.

Step #4 Always Read the Label

When in doubt, read the suggested use instructions on the label. However, what I noticed is that companies offering the same dosage of caffeine provide different instructions. In my opinion, the instructions for Platinum Caffeine are the most accurate.

It’s a good idea to jump back to Platinum Caffeine now and copy the directions or jot them down for later.

fit slim woman exercising

Are caffeine pills safe?

Caffeine pills are mostly safe when used as directed. Even when used as directed, people who are sensitive to caffeine may experience negative side effects, which further enforces the need to assess your tolerance first.

Caffeine is found naturally in coffee beans, green tea leaves, black tea, and yerba mate. Millions of people around the world drink these beverages every day. The key is to drink these beverages or to take caffeine pills in moderation.

Once an occasional dose of caffeine becomes an addiction, then it’s no longer safe. Remember, caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. The advantage of caffeine is that the body does not easily build up a high tolerance to it, yet addiction and withdrawal are common (*).

Even the FDA recognizes that “pure and highly concentrated caffeine” can be dangerous (*). People with hypertension need to be especially cautious with caffeine.

The general rule of thumb is to not exceed 400 mg of caffeine daily (*).

How much caffeine is in a cup of coffee?

If you’re a coffee drinker who wants to use caffeine pills as a coffee alternative, you may be wondering how much caffeine is in a cup of coffee.

Depending on how big your cup is or the coffee brand you drink, there can be more than 400 mg per cup.

For example, a Starbucks 20 oz. Blonde Roast contains 475 mg of caffeine (*).

However, that’s an extreme example. A 12 oz. cup of Folgers Ground Coffee (2 Tbs.) contains 60-80 mg of caffeine.

A Dunkin’ Donuts medium 14 oz. coffee contains 210 mg of caffeine.

An average cup of coffee contains anywhere from 80 – 200 mg of caffeine.

If you’re a green tea drinker like me, there’s about 30 mg of caffeine per 8 oz. of brewed green tea. Black tea typically contains more caffeine than green tea at roughly 47 mg per 8 oz. of brewed tea.

Most soft drinks including Diet Coke, Pepsi, and Mountain Dew contain between 60 and 90 mg of caffeine per 20 oz.

Click Here to check out a full caffeine content chart for popular coffee, tea, and soft drink brands.

Why are these numbers important?

If you’re accustomed to drinking any of these beverages for a caffeine boost, it’s important to compare the number of milligrams you get from your beverages to the amount you intend to get from your caffeine supplement.

It’s also easier to assess your tolerance this way when you first receive your caffeine pills. A 200 mg caffeine pill equals about 2 cups of regular coffee.

Caffeine + L-Theanine

The reason I drink green tea and oolong tea is that I get the caffeine energy boost minus the jitters that occur when I drink coffee. Just one cup of strong coffee can give me anxiety, while I can drink strong cups of oolong tea all day without any negative side effects.

Why is this? It’s the relaxing effect of L-Theanine that cancels out the negative side effects of caffeine stimulation (*).

L-Theanine is naturally occurring in black tea, green tea, and oolong tea. On average, a cup of green contains 6.5 grams of L-Theanine (*). In most teas, there’s about 3x the amount of caffeine as L-theanine.

If you’re someone who experiences jitters with standard caffeine pills or coffee, you may want to try the Sports Research caffeine above.

Side Effects of Caffeine Pills

It’s very important to keep in mind that side effects are more common with caffeine pills than with other supplements on the market. If you have caffeine sensitivity, there’s a greater chance of experiencing the negative side effects.

Below is a list of the most common reported caffeine pill side effects by users:

  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Anxiety
  • Jitters
  • Rapid Heartbeat
  • Panic Attack
  • Irritability

Caffeine & Exercise

If you came here to find the best caffeine pills for a workout, there’s a special consideration to make. Caffeine is a vasoconstrictor, which means it restricts blood flow (*).

For this reason, more athletes (particularly bodybuilders) are starting to reach for stimulant-free pre-workout supplements that promote blood flow by boosting Nitric Oxide production.

What is caffeine anhydrous?

Caffeine anhydrous is a popular form of caffeine used in most fitness supplements. Caffeine anhydrous simply means caffeine without water.

Most caffeine anhydrous is derived from the seeds and leaves of coffee plants.

Bottom Line

Do caffeine pills work? They sure do, and it’s critical to be careful with them. Always follow the instructions on the label and remember to assess your tolerance first.

The main benefits of caffeine pills are increased alertness, improved focus, wakefulness, and positive mood. Caffeine pills are also an effective part of a weight-loss regimen because they help to boost metabolic rate and fat oxidation aka burn fat (*). They also work to suppress an overactive appetite.

The greatest advantage of choosing a quality caffeine pill over-caffeinated beverages such as coffee is to obtain a smoother energy burst without the crash. The microencapsulated extended-release caffeine in Genius Caffeine is the best and safest on the market in my opinion.

Bottom line, use your head.

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