We Ranked Every Drink on the Starbucks Menu
Hear us out. Maybe you'll find something new to try.
Now that holiday drinks have reappeared at Starbucks, there are currently 42 drinks on its ever-changing menu (and 50-plus food items), and infinite ways to customize them. But, admit it: you've probably only had a fraction. Despite my embarrassing math SAT score, even I know a fraction of 42 isn't a lot, so to help you break the chains of habit, I've compiled this constantly updated ranking of every single drink on the Starbucks menu. Perhaps you'll read it and find something new you want to try. Or perhaps you'll think I'm wrong about everything. Let's find out together!
But first, a few ground rules:
- While you might be able to order drinks not found here, please note that this is limited to items that specifically appear on the in-store Starbucks menu boards. The list will be updated frequently to reflect menu changes.
- I've included the hot and iced versions of drinks (such as the coffee) only when Starbucks lists both on its menu. Otherwise this ranking would be very long and very boring.
- I didn't customize the drinks in any way, so that I could experience them as Starbucks intended.
- All the drinks' nutritional info is based on a 16oz Grande size.
Make sense? Then grab a Strawberry Acai Starbucks Refresher, toss it in the trash immediately, order up a Peppermint Mocha instead, and check out this ranking.
42. Strawberry Acai Starbucks Refreshers
Nutritional info: 90 calories, 20 grams sugar
I'm deathly allergic to strawberries, which is 99% of this drink. But I put aside my severe allergic reaction to strawberries and took a sip of this. It was great! JK, I never tried it. If Superman were a skinny Jewish guy from Delaware, strawberries would be his kryptonite.
41. Pink Drink
Nutritional info: 140 calories, 24 grams sugar
If you want to enjoy this Strawberry Acai Refreshers drink made with coconutmilk, go forth! It looks delicious! But sadly, I cannot partake. (Read my blurb on Strawberry Acai.)
40. Salted Caramel Mocha
Nutritional info: 470 calories, 59 grams sugar
A couple years back, Starbucks introduced the Salted Caramel Hot Cocoa (now called the Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate) and this drink, the Salted Caramel Mocha. They’re the exact same drink, except for the Mocha includes espresso. Piling mocha and java onto salted caramel is a little too much for my tastebuds to handle. You ever watch Top Chef where a contestant tries to do too much with a dish and gets called out for it? This is that. Stick with the hot chocolate if you must get your Salted Caramel fix.
39. Starbucks Cold Brew
Nutritional info: 5 calories, 0 grams sugar
This is fine. It tastes perfectly smooth. But there are so many fun variations on this drink—especially where it’s topped with cold foam—that to order this might actually be a waste of a trip to Starbucks
38. Eggnog Latte
Nutritional info: 450 calories, 52 grams sugar
This smelled off when I went to sip it. Perhaps I'm not an Eggnog Latte person, but the smell coming off of it really turned me off. And the taste didn't do it any favors either—sadly, it was a little like spoiled milk. Also, unless Starbucks is planning on spiking its Eggnog Latte, what's the point of this?
37. Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew
Nutritional info: 230 calories, 23 grams sugar
This drink contains 330mg of sodium. Perhaps they should rename it SALTED Caramel Cream Cold Brew to make people more aware of the tidal wave of salt coming their way in each sip.
36. Iced Guava Passionfruit Coconutmilk Drink
Nutritional info: 190 calories, 33 grams sugar
Is Iced Guava Passionfruit Coconutmilk Drink something you can order at Starbucks or is it a jumble of keywords revealed to an SEO expert in a fever dream? The good news is that the drink’s ultra pink color looks fantastic on Instagram, and the tropical fruit flavors (especially the guava!) are delicious. But the finish is a lot like that bubblegum medicine you used to take for ear infections. It’s not unpleasant, but it’s also not something I can recommend.
35. Caramel Macchiato
Nutritional info: 250 calories, 33 grams sugar
My disappointment with everything caramel flavored has been documented. But this is the only hot caramel drink on Starbucks' menu, and it's serviceable. I don't mind the caramel drizzle, and the vanilla syrup inside plays nice with the espresso and steamed milk.
34. Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino
Nutritional info: 500 calories, 63 grams sugar
How can a Frappuccino with both mocha (!) and cookies (!) be ranked 34th? When it’s an unforgiving sugar bomb that makes me want to text my dentist, “I’m sorry for drinking this.” Strangely, the Mocha Frapp has about the same amount of sugar, but tastes way, way, way less cavity-inducing.
33. Caramel Frappuccino
Nutritional info: 420 calories, 66 grams sugar
Speaking of the dentist, caramel reminds me of some flavoring the dentist used to give me before numbing my mouth and filling a cavity. I can't shake it when I'm drinking it. I'm immediately transported to the dentist's office.
Nutritional info: 120 calories, 10 grams sugar
Going to Starbucks and ordering a cappuccino is like going to a Starbucks and ordering a cappuccino. What are you doing?! There are Frappuccinos and Guava Passionfruit drinks to order!
31. Almondmilk Honey Flat White
Nutritional info: 120 calories, 18 grams sugar
I was psyched to try this one, but after a couple sips I kept wondering, “When am I going to taste the honey?” There’s a little honey mid-sip and in the finish, but it’s entirely too subtle, which is not something you can often say at Starbucks. One surprise is how well the Flat White works with the almondmilk.
30. Dark Roast
Nutritional info: 5 calories, 0 grams sugar
This roast changes over the course of the year. Right now it’s Christmas Blend 2020, but when I go into the ‘Bucks, I’d rather drink something like a Mocha Frappuccino.
29. Blonde Roast
Nutritional info: 5 calories, 0 grams sugar
This roast is Christmas Blonde Roast 2020, although it also changes seasonally. It’s tasty, but it makes me want a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew.
28. Medium Roast
Nutritional info: 5 calories, 0 grams sugar
This roast is always reserved for Pike Place. This is my favorite of the drip coffees (though in the afternoon, there's a location near me that switches to pour-over). Starbucks says it has “subtly rich flavors of cocoa and toasted nuts.” It makes me want a Caffè Mocha.
27. Caffè Americano
Nutritional info: 20 calories, 0 grams sugar
Starbucks coffee greatly benefits from a splash of milk and a little sugar. And you know what? When I drink this, I miss those ingredients.
26. Royal English Breakfast Tea
Nutritional info: 0 calories, 0 grams sugar
This is a bold, black breakfast tea that needs milk in the worst way. So get it with said milk, like you're a regular Benedict Cumberbatch or something.
25. Vanilla Bean Crème Frappuccino
Nutritional info: 400 calories, 57 grams sugar
I think I used to be more of a vanilla person growing up, but now I'm squarely in the chocolate camp. 10-year-old me would've lost his mind over this. Significantly older, current me (who has successfully gone through puberty!) thinks this is vanilla overload.
24. Caramel Brulée Latte
Nutritional info: 410 calories, 49 grams sugar
This actually has a lot stronger coffee flavors than I would've expected from the 'Bucks, which typically lets any caramel drink go way overboard on the caramel flavors. The caramel and coffee play nice together here, and the finish does bring to mind a brulée. I was shocked by this one.
23. White Chocolate Mocha
Nutritional info: 430 calories, 53 grams sugar
I want to love this. I do! But I can't force myself to. It's got plenty of sugar, plenty of cream, and plenty of coffee flavor, but the white mocha doesn't tie it together so much as try to overpower the coffee and cream flavors.
22. Mango Dragonfruit Starbucks Refreshers
Nutritional info: 90 calories, 19 grams sugar
This is not a drink so much as a beacon in a cup with ice and a straw. It says to everyone who walks by you, "I just bought a wine-colored drink from Starbucks that has fruit in it!" It begs to be Instagrammed. Oh, and there are seeds from the dragonfruit (and actual dragonfruit!) floating around in there. You can't miss them. The flavor is tropical as the look and name of the drink promises. Despite the fact that dragonfruit has its fruitprints all over this, mango is what lingers on your palate before fading away. But that photo you posted to Instagram? That, my friends, stays forever.
21. Peppermint Mocha Frappuccino
Nutritional info: 430 calories, 64 grams sugar
I really came into this one expecting to rank this higher, but peppermint mocha is another set of flavors that works better in a hot drink. And this is from someone who thinks the Frappuccinos are some of the best beverages on the menu. The peppermint mocha sauce here overpowers any semblance of coffee that's supposed to be mixed in, and the drink suffers as a result.
20. Toasted White Chocolate Mocha Frappuccino
Nutritional info: 420 calories, 65 grams sugar
I’ve had more than a few Starbucks drinks that appear to be developed as hot drinks, but are shoehorned into a cold Frappuccino version, as well. Those Frapps tend not to be my favorite. So it was shocking to me how delicious this particular Frappuccino is. It’s currently cold outside while I’m drinking this, and I’m loving the idea of pouring more ice cold liquid into my body. The festive holiday sugar that seemed strange in the hot drink completely works in the cold version. Give me ice cold white chocolate mixed with fun sugar all day long, Starbucks.
19. Kiwi Starfruit Starbucks Refreshers
Nutritional info: 90 calories, 18 grams sugar
Look down at this drink and you might find yourself wondering: what are those black spots doing in my beautiful, key lime-hued drink? Why, those are chunks of kiwi, friend! But before you start flashing back to hating orange juice with pulp back in your younger days, know that this is a different drink altogether! It’s crisp, sweet and tropical, and you won’t even mind encountering those tasty kiwi bites. And while starfruit gets top billing along with kiwi here, know that it’s the kiwi flavors that’ll linger delightfully on your palate.
18. Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew
Nutritional info: 110 calories, 14 grams sugar
It's incredible what a little splash of Starbucks' sweet cream can do to elevate its regular cold brew. That sweetness cuts through the bitterness, but isn't overpowering. As an added bonus, it's pretty trippy to watch the cream spread out in the ultra-dark coffee.
17. Dragon Drink
Nutritional info: 130 calories, 23 grams sugar
This drink looks like a secret menu drink based on a Hello Kitty color pattern. And it tastes like it looks—saccharine sweet, but with a not unpleasant mango and coconut milk finish. It's a little confusing because it tastes like mango while looking like Lisa Frank’s bedroom. It's more mango-forward than you'd expect for something that looks like this to be. Perfect for mango lovers and fans of a Lilly Pulitzer aesthetic.
16. Honey Citrus Mint Tea
Nutritional tea: 130 calories, 30 grams sugar
Can you imagine if you were the first person to ever order a Jade Citrus Mint green tea mixed with Peach Tranquility tea, hot water, steamed lemonade, and honey? Well, someone did (was it you???), it got posted to the internet, ordered a billion more times, and now it’s on the menu. I didn’t invent it, but I’m glad someone did because this is a wondrous tea concoction that benefits from the delightful interplay of lemonade and honey. And drinking it when you feel like a cold is coming on feels like a smart idea.
15. Peppermint Hot Cocoa
Nutritional info: 440 calories, 56 grams sugar
Minty and pleasant! Like drinking a York Peppermint patty in the best possible way. Taking a sip makes me feel like I’m in a cabin after snowboarding (poorly) all day, and I’ve just come back for a warmer. It’s also times like this that I wish this Starbucks sold booze. Because dang it if this wouldn’t be good with a nip of peppermint schnapps. Regardless, this is a delicious taste of the season.
14. Chai Latte
Nutritional info: 240 calories, 42 grams sugar
I used to order this chai before I'd go in to work an early shift at Barnes and Noble. This was a decade ago, back when people were still reading books made out of paper. That chai gave me the energy to correctly alphabetize all the Margaret Atwood novels. The drink hasn't changed since then, and after drinking one, I'm pretty sure I could still remember to shelve Alias Grace before The Blind Assassin .
13. Chestnut Praline Latte
Nutritional info: 330 calories, 39 grams sugar
They nailed the chestnut flavor here, and the finish is a little bit of the almond flavor hinted at by the praline part of the drink's name. This is the holidays in a cup. A little saccharine in the finish, which deducts it a few points. I would enjoy roasting this drink on an open flame, but not in a bad way!
12. Cold Brew with Dark Cocoa Almondmilk Foam
Nutritional info: 40 calories, 4 grams sugar
The best coffee drinks with almondmilk are able to cover up the unfortunate aftertaste of the non-dairy milk. The dark cocoa tries its best, but it doesn’t quite have the juice. That said, it’s tough to complain about a foamy, creamy iced concoction that tastes like coffee and cocoa. Still, this drink is a huge step forward for anyone who loves Starbucks, but doesn’t care for dairy products. It’s a signal that the company will continue to innovate to get your attention (and your money). That’s no small feat.
11. Matcha Green Tea Latte
Nutritional info: 240 calories, 32 grams sugar
This is one soothing beverage. There's the earthy green tea essence mixed with the sweetness of the warm milk and a layer of foam, and I'm hooked. If you need a break from coffee and love green tea, this is a can't-miss.
10. Iced Pineapple Matcha Coconutmilk Drink
Nutritional info: 170 calories, 27 grams sugar
Sometimes I’ll read the description of a Starbucks drink and have a visceral reaction to it. “Our premium matcha green tea shaken with flavors of pineapple and ginger along with coconutmilk and ice...” made me certain I was going to regret taking a huge sip. But the pineapple ginger syrup laced into this cold treat makes all the difference, brightening up the earthy notes of the iced matcha. And with 80mg of caffeine, it gives you about a cup of coffee’s worth of energy to power you through an afternoon slump.
9. Toasted White Chocolate Mocha
Nutritional info: 420 calories, 56 grams sugar
Raise your hand if you like holiday sugar sparkles in your coffee! Uh, yeah, I didn’t know that was a thing either! Regardless, this holiday drink is crafted with white chocolate sauce, peppermint syrup, espresso, and steamed milk—and comes topped with the aforementioned sugar sparkles. The deep red sugar dots float atop the whipped cream, making for a festive looking coffee drink… but not necessarily one you’d go back to.
8. Caffè Latte
Nutritional info: 190 calories, 17 grams sugar
Steamed milk, espresso. You get a layer of foam on top. I love when the foam hits your top lip, supporting it like a little milk pillow as you draw warm espresso into your mouth. I'm a little shocked I liked this more than some of their flavored lattes, especially considering my well-documented childlike love for sugary flavors, but this simple drink delivers.
7. Signature Hot Chocolate
Nutritional info: 370 calories, 38 grams sugar
I went to college with a bunch of people I don't see anymore. That's normal, part of growing up and whatnot. I also used to drink a lot of hot chocolate as a kid, but I don't anymore. Part of growing up and whatnot. But when you see those old friends, or you take a sip of hot chocolate, you're there again. You're 13, watching your brother's soccer game, and it's windy as hell, and you want to be inside watching football, but you're out there sipping your hot chocolate and listening to the game on the radio.
6. Pumpkin Spice Latte
Nutritional info: 380 calories, 50 grams sugar
It’s such an important drink in the Starbucks lineup that there are news stories dedicated to it . A couple years back, I even went to every major chain and tried all their pumpkin spice drinks , and you’d never believe what came in first! OK, you probably would. It was this drink. In the meantime, they changed the recipe (they added pumpkin puree and took out artificial flavoring), but it still tasted the same to me. Which is great. This is a classic -- but may just be upended by Starbucks' new Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew, a more adult-take on the PSL. Only time will tell.
5. Nitro Cold Brew with Sweet Cream
Nutritional info: 70 calories, 4 grams sugar
Like the Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew, but even creamier, thanks to the addition of nitro cold brew. If you’re watching your sugar intake, there’s also a little less sugar because it removes the vanilla syrup. But don’t worry, you still get vanilla sweet cream in this sucker.
4. Iced Peach Green Tea Lemonade
Nutritional info: 130 calories, 32 grams sugar
This is delightfully peachy. It's like taking a bite of a peach and then eating a few spoonfuls of sugar to help that peach go down, just like Mary Poppins told us (we're paraphrasing). I taste absolutely no green tea whatsoever in this, and I don't mind it much. Tastes like a plain old peach lemonade. Is that even a widely available thing? It is now.
3. Peppermint Mocha
Nutritional info: 440 calories, 54 grams sugar
The first sip is chocolate and cream, and the finish is a delightful chocolate and mint. And it doesn't leave an overly sweet taste in your mouth that makes you want to drink a gallon of water to wash it away.
2. Caffè Mocha
Nutritional info: 360 calories, 35 grams sugar
Ooo, adult hot chocolate! I want to fill my bathtub up with it, cover myself in marshmallows, and spend the day... sitting in the tub eating marshmallows. Is this drink a movie on Cinemax at 2am? Because it has positively sinful mocha notes.
1. Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew
Nutritional info: 250 calories, 31 grams sugar
“It's very popular,” the barista said to me. This was confirmed when two people picked them up at the bar ahead of me. And it lives up to the hype. I was worried it’d both smell and taste like a pumpkin Yankee Candle, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. The pumpkin flavor comes from two ingredients: a spice blend of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves, and the pumpkin cream cold foam, which is layered above the cold brew coffee that makes up the majority of the drink. The cold foam has just enough pumpkin flavor to make you feel like it’s fall, but not enough where it completely overpowers the coffee. You can taste the smooth cold brew, and the finish is all coffee. It’s an ice cold take on a fall classic; a coffee drink fully reimagined for the Starbucks lover who drinks cold brew year-round. And it’s one of the best drinks the company has ever put out.