Here, we describe a new application of ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with an electrospray ionization quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry operating in MS(E) mode (UPLC-QTOF-MS(E)) for the sensitive, fast, and effective characterization of alkaloids in goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis). This approach allowed identification of alkaloids using a cyclic low and high collision energy spectral acquisition mode providing simultaneous accurate precursor and fragment ion mass information. A total of 45 compounds were separated and 40 of them characterized including one new compound and 7 identified for the first time in goldenseal. The spectral data obtained using this method is comparable to those obtained by conventional LC-MS(n). However, the UPLC-QTOF-MS(E) method offers high chromatographic resolution with structural characterization facilitated by accurate mass measurement in both MS and MS/MS modes in a single analytical run; this makes it suitable for the rapid analysis and screening of alkaloids in plant extracts.