The Most Delicious Low Carb Starbucks Drinks
The Most Delicious Low Carb Starbucks Drinks
A keto diet can offer numerous benefits, such as quick initial weight loss, increased "good" cholesterol, and reduced blood sugar. However, the diet's strict guidelines may make it challenging for some to maintain, especially when balancing it with indulgences like a daily Starbucks fix. With this low carb diet’s popularity, restaurants are increasingly incorporating keto-friendly options into their menus, including Starbucks. Here, we’ll break down the best low carb options on the menu, plus how you can create your own low carb beverage.
Creating Your Own Low Carb Drink at Starbucks

Low Carb Drinks at Starbucks

Hot or Iced Coffee (0g Net Carbs) For keto-friendly Starbucks drinks, a plain coffee, hot or iced, is a simple and carb-free option. A 12-ounce (tall) cup contains less than 1 gram of carbs. You can customize it further by adding half-and-half, almond milk, or cream to your liking.

Cold Brew Coffee (0g Net Carbs) Similar to drip or iced coffee, cold brew is virtually carb, calorie, and sugar-free. The key difference is that it's brewed using cold water, which allows it to retain more caffeine. This results in a more potent energy boost, whether you add cream and sugar-free syrup or drink it black. For an even richer, creamier experience, try nitro cold brew—it's infused with nitrogen to provide natural sweetness without extra sugar and a delightfully velvety texture.

Espresso Shot (1g Net Carbs) Espresso, like black coffee, is virtually carb-free, containing only about half a gram per shot. For a double shot, order a "doppio" and enjoy it as is or add a splash of cream or almond milk to smooth out any bitterness. You can even stir in a half-pump of sugar-free syrup to create a miniature, keto-friendly latte.

Espresso con Panna (2g Net Carbs) For keto dieters, a plain espresso may be too bitter, but a 12-ounce milk-based drink is too heavy first thing in the morning. Instead, try a modest mix of espresso and Starbucks' vanilla-infused whipped cream. As the cream melts into the robust espresso shots, it will naturally sweeten and smooth out the harshness, creating a balanced and enjoyable beverage. Alternatively, an Espresso Macchiato made with steamed cream can provide a similar effect.

Unsweetened Hot or Iced Tea (0g Net Carbs) For keto-friendly Starbucks orders, tea is an ideal choice. Since tea is simply water and leaves, it is naturally carb-free. However, be sure to specify that you want unsweetened iced tea, as the default recipes contain sugary syrups. If you prefer your tea with a dairy addition, opt for a splash of heavy cream, which is higher in fat and lower in carbs compared to regular milk.

Hot or Iced Coffee with Sugar-Free Syrup (1g+ Net Carbs) Sugar-free syrups can sweeten drinks without added sugar or calories, but may contain hidden carbs that can knock you out of ketosis if used excessively. Stick to two pumps (about 1g net carbs) to stay in the clear. Sugar-free vanilla, caramel, and hazelnut syrups are commonly available at Starbucks. Add a touch of almond milk or cream to lighten your coffee.

Americano (2g Net Carbs) Americanos, made with just espresso and water, are a low carb option for keto-friendly Starbucks drinks. If the bold espresso flavor is too intense, you can customize it by adding a pump or two of sugar-free flavoring or a splash of cream.

Keto Flat White (7g Net Carbs) If you're a latte enthusiast, you're missing out if you haven't tried a flat white. This espresso-based drink features steamed milk with a velvety texture. While espresso is carb-free, the dairy milk typically used adds carbs.

Keto Cafe Latte((8.5g Net Carbs) A keto version of the Cafe Latte involves swapping out the milk for cream. Compared to half-and-half and milk, heavy cream has a lower carb count. However, it is significantly higher in calories and fat, which can be beneficial for those following a keto diet. To keep your heavy cream intake in check, opt for a tall latte, which will limit you to around eight ounces of cream.

Tall Low-Carb Mocha (10-12g Net Carbs) While Starbucks offers "skinny" versions of some menu items that are lower in calories, these drinks are not necessarily low in carbs. For example, a grande Skinny Mocha contains 24 grams of net carbs. To create a keto-friendly Starbucks drink, order a tall size, use only two pumps of skinny mocha sauce, and request almond milk or a 50/50 mix of hot water and heavy cream.

Grande Keto Pink Drink (2-4g Net Carbs) This keto-friendly recipe has gained popularity in online low-carb communities, and for good reason—it's delightfully delicious. For a tasty keto-style Pink Drink at your local Starbucks, simply order an iced Passion Tango tea with up to three pumps of sugar-free vanilla syrup and a splash of heavy cream.

London Fog (1g Net Carbs) Tea lovers can enjoy this Earl Grey tea latte by using a plant-based milk—almond has the fewest carbs, but oat or soy work too. Go light on the sugar-free vanilla syrup, as each pump adds a carb.

Tall Blonde Vanilla Latte (2.5g Net Carbs) Swap out the milk in a tall Iced Blonde Vanilla Latte for cream or almond milk to slash around 12 grams of sugar and carbs. Opting for sugar-free vanilla syrup instead further reduces the total carb count to just 2.5 grams when using almond milk.

Tall Keto Frappuccino (3g Net Carbs) Are you a Frappuccino fan? Well, you're in luck—this secret menu hack lets you enjoy a decadent, customized Frappuccino. Start with a tall Espresso Frappuccino, but skip the standard base and syrups. Instead, request two pumps of sugar-free vanilla syrup and two shots of heavy cream. Then have the barista blend it all Frappuccino-style for a rich, creamy treat.

Keto Hot Chai (2-4g Net Carbs) Order a hot chai tea with a splash of heavy cream. This simple swap from the typical sweetened chai latte, which is primarily milk-based, can satisfy your chai craving while significantly reducing the sugar and calorie content. If you still want a touch of sweetness, add a couple pumps of sugar-free vanilla syrup. This clever keto-friendly alternative provides the same creamy, warm, spiced flavor you enjoy, but with a fraction of the sugar and calories.

Creating Your Own Low Carb Starbucks Drink

Choose a base. Starbucks’ low carb bases include hot or iced coffee, cold brew, espresso, or unsweetened tea. If you’re a latte person, select espresso as lattes are made from espresso. Depending on how bold and rich you like your coffee, you can opt for regular coffee in blonde, medium, or dark roast. When ordering from Starbucks, consider choosing a smaller drink size. Smaller sizes generally contain fewer carbohydrates, allowing you to indulge your cravings while keeping your carb intake in check.

Select your milk. Keto milk options that Starbucks carries are heavy cream, almond milk, and half-and-half. The choice between heavy cream and half-and-half involves some trade-offs. Heavy cream has fewer carbs but more fat and calories, which can add up quickly if you're watching your intake. If calorie control is a priority, I'd suggest using half-and-half sparingly. However, if calories aren't a major concern, then the richer flavor of heavy cream may be worth it.

Decide which flavors you’d like to add. Here is where you can really customize your drink and make it your own. You have the option of selecting a sugar alternative like Stevia or Splenda, or you can go for a sugar-free syrup to add some flavor. While each location carries different sugar-free options, most stores will carry vanilla and cinnamon dolce. Other flavors stores may carry include: sugar-free hazelnut, caramel, peppermint mocha, and mocha.

Avoid whipped cream. While whipped cream can enhance the flavor, it's best to skip it. The additional sugars in whipped cream will contribute unwanted carbohydrates to your drink.

Low Carb Food Options at Starbucks

Sous Vide Egg Bites (9g Net Carbs) Savor these protein-packed egg bites, bursting with the rich flavors of bacon and Gruyère cheese—the perfect low-carb option for breakfast or snacking.

Smoked Turkey Protein Box (3-5g Net Carbs) For a lower-carb take on the Smoked Turkey Protein Box, swap out the bread for a lettuce wrap and skip the grapes. This tasty, satisfying option has reduced net carbs. Be sure to discuss your dietary preferences with your barista.

Chicken Wrap Protein Box (3-5g Net Carbs) For a keto-friendly version of the Chicken Wrap Protein Box, skip the whole wheat wrap, apples, and almond butter. Instead, request the grilled chicken and cheddar served on a bed of fresh greens. This simple swap creates a low-carb, keto-friendly meal option.

Grilled Chicken & Cauliflower Tabbouleh Salad (11g Net Carbs) This keto-friendly dish features a vibrant blend of cauliflower, fresh herbs, and a zesty dressing that delights the senses. Bursting with bold flavors and crisp textures, it's an ideal low-carb option for those seeking a flavorful and satisfying meal.

Turkey Bacon & Egg White Breakfast Sandwich (2g Net Carbs) For this sandwich made up of savory turkey bacon and fluffy egg whites, ask for no bread or opt for a lettuce bun.

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