Big Energy Coffee Lightning Review: Because Sometimes Caffeine Alone Just Isn't Enough

America! The land of excess. Our crusts are cheese-filled, our cheese and bacon sandwiched between not bread but two thick-cut slabs of fried chicken. Whatever it is, we must always have more.

What Is It?

Coffee meets energy drink. Per 12-oz cupful: 32mg ginseng, 42mg guarana, 32mg yerba mate (of which 1mg is caffeine), 1mcg vitamin B12, 8mg taurine.

Who's It For?

College students, harried housewives, recovering junkies, bloggers.




Using It

Felt my heart beating... like, I really felt it. Experienced feelings of resentment towards 7-Eleven for not making better-tasting coffee, and toward actual good coffee vendors for not adding into their drinks this special supercaffeine brew. Still felt a little punchy, even after several hours had passed.


12oz normal caffeinated coffee
Resting heart rate before: 103 (yes, wow, I know.)
After: 106

12oz Big Energy
Resting heart rate before: 103
After: 109

The Best Part

20% more caffeine than a regular 12-oz cup.

Tragic Flaw

It tastes terrible. It tastes really, really bad. Flavor is not good. Yucky. Not a fan of the manner in which it assaults your tastebuds.

Test Notes

From our test subjects:

• "It tastes like I made a pot of coffee, then let it sit out in the open for four days: stale and bitter."
• "Eugh! This is terrible!"
• "Do I really have to drink all of this?"
• "Can I just give mine to somebody else?"
• "My hands are shaking."
• "Like I drank three coffees, with some but not all of the stomach grossness and anxiety."

Should You Buy It?

If you want to stay up late: yes. If you're looking for a tasty artisanal brew: sewer water would be more satisfying than this.

7-11 Big Energy Enhanced Coffee-Like Beverage

• Volume: 12 ounces
• Caffeine Count: Approx 295mg per 12-oz cup: 243mg from base coffee blend, 48mg pure caffeine added, 3mg from guarana, 1mg from yerba mate.
• Price: $1.35