If you’re serious about adhering to the keto diet, that means watching everything you consume, even your caffeine. Although coffee is allowed (hallelujah!) on the keto diet, there are some caffeinated drinks you should avoid, and many of these are, unfortunately, found at your beloved Starbucks.
As delicious as they are, some of the signature drinks at Starbucks contain too much sugar and carbs to fall within keto’s guidelines. Luckily, there are also plenty of drinks that do and also some hacks to make certain drinks more keto-friendly.
- Drip coffee: Starbucks’s regular hot coffee is completely keto-friendly. However, if you want to add milk and sugar, opt for heavy cream and stevia or sugar-free syrup instead. In fact, you should be substituting milk for heavy cream or heavy whipping cream in all of your Starbucks drinks because cream contains less sugar and fewer carbs than milk but more fat, a necessary component of the keto diet. Half-and-half is a less ideal choice because it contains less fat than heavy cream or heavy whipping cream.
- Iced Coffee and Cold Brew: The same thing goes for Starbucks’s Iced Coffee and Cold Brew. Drink it black or dress it up with heavy cream and stevia.
- Espresso: Espresso is carb-free, so enjoy a shot or two! But if you want to add a milk element, choose cream over milk.
- Hot tea: If you’re more of a tea drinker, Starbucks has a variety of brewed teas that contain zero sugar and zero carbs (unfortunately, the same cannot be said about the iced-tea selection). If you want to sweeten it up, choose stevia or sugar-free syrup.
- Americano: An Americano is just espresso with hot water, making it perfectly keto-friendly.
- Latte with heavy cream: Lattes are milk-heavy, but you can make them more keto-friendly by subbing in heavy cream. Alternatively, you can use coconut milk or almond milk, both of which have fewer carbs than regular milk. However, they don’t offer the same fatty goodness that heavy cream does.
- Chai Latte with brewed chai tea: If your go-to Starbucks drink is the Chai Latte, you can still enjoy a version of it. While the original uses sugar-laden chai tea concentrate, you can ask your barista to re-create it by using the brewed chai tea bags, heavy cream, and sugar-free cinnamon syrup.
- Frappuccino with half heavy cream and half water: Let’s get something straight — Starbucks Frappuccinos are probably not recommended under any diet, but if you just can’t go without your favorite cold blended drink, you can at least order the Coffee Light Frappuccino with half heavy cream and half water instead of milk. It already contains sugar, but you can add a pump or two of sugar-free syrup if that’s how you roll.