If you’re going to Starbucks and watching your calories, I have good news – there’s a LOT of low-calorie Starbucks drinks to choose from – including nine that don’t contain any calories at all.
Admittedly, it might not be that easy to work this out for yourself in the US. Unlike many other countries, US Starbucks doesn’t seem to have a handy chart containing all their calories in one place – nor, does the US Starbucks Nutrition Calculator make it that easy to calculate calories if you make substitutions to your order – which does make it a bit trickier to spot the lowest calorie drinks at Starbucks – so we did the hard work for you.
And if you’ve got here thinking ‘oh, I wanted the UK calories’ don’t worry, just click here and you’ll find the UK version of this post.
Admittedly, when I first started writing this piece, I wasn’t expecting it to be very long.
Because I don’t like coffee, Starbucks is not somewhere I ever go and so my image of it was of super-large drinks topped with cream and full of sugar. I, therefore, wasn’t expecting the list of low-calorie drinks from Starbucks to be very long – and then it just kept going and going!
In fact, there are heaps of low-calorie drink options in Starbucks which pleasantly surprised me. And I now really want a London Fog Latte!
First, a Few Notes
I picked a cut off as 100 calories as low calorie – but, if that’s too many there’s still plenty of options for you – a lot of drinks still come under 50 calories – and if you’re looking for the lowest calories drinks from Starbucks, a number of the plainer and more basic teas and coffees can be under 10 calories a cup.
Also, note that most of the calculations are done on 2% milk (unless the drink is only made with whole milk in which case that is used). If you can swap to no-fat you’ll be able to reduce calories further.
If you want to make things sweeter add Splenda or Stevia rather than sugar. Or pick a shot of Sugar-Free Syrup which contains no calories. Each shot of a sugary syrup adds 20 calories.
A sprinkle of chocolate on the top also won’t upset things too much – according to one of the global Starbucks nutrition charts it’s just 6 calories for a dusting of chocolate. A caramel swirl adds 15 calories.
Some of the teas below are listed as a ‘neat’ tea. If you prefer to drink your tea white that’s no problem, a splash of milk will probably only add 10-20 calories depending on your original cup size and how much fat is in the milk.
Portion size matters – there are some of the more complicated concoctions where the small size is under 100 calories, but go up to a Tall or Grande and you tip over the limit. If you only see one or two sizes listed for a drink this is why.
So, without further ado here’s my list of 63 choices of drinks under 100 calories in Starbucks in the US.
9 Zero Calorie Drinks in Starbucks
I’ll talk about each of these in a bit more detail below, but if you want to a list of the Starbucks drinks with the lowest calories – without the temptation of reading about all the other choices – it’s these.
Chai Tea, English Breakfast Tea, Earl Grey tea, Mint Majesty, Peach Tranquility, Teavana® Sparkling Unsweetened Peach Nectarine Green Tea, Iced Black Tea, Iced Green Tea and Iced Passion Tango™ Tea
All served with no milk or sugar (but you could add Splenda or Stevia).
If you’re looking for low sugar Starbucks drinks these are also your best options.
Now, let’s cover the rest of the Starbucks drinks menu….
Black coffee is generally a very low-calorie drink so if you keep things simple you’ll find lots of low-cal options in Starbucks.
It’s also one of the healthy Starbucks drinks…. That’s right, don’t think you can’t order coffee if you’re trying to be healthy. In sensible amounts (which is up to 3-4 small cups a day) coffee is good for you – it’s actually an excellent source of antioxidants, packed with other ingredients that might help your health – and moderate coffee drinkers even live longer.
Even instant coffee can be good for you (and if you want to check out our full post on that later, it’s here)
So, what should you pick from the coffee menu if you’re watching your calories?
Just coffee and water, it’s not surprising this is a good choice. The smallest size has just 5 calories, a Venti has 20
Black Coffees – All Roast (no additions)
All sizes – 5 calories or less
Brewed Coffees – All Roasts (no additions)
All sizes – 10 calories or less
Caffe Misto – 2% milk
Looking for something more creamy – this is fresh coffee with steamed milk. A short has just 50 calories, or upgrade to a tall for just 30 calories more.
Cappuccino – 2% milk
An Espresso with extra milk, you can enjoy a Tall Cappucino for 100 calories, or order a short to save 30 calories.
Short, black and potent a Solo Espresso is a calorie counter’s dream at just 5 calories…. if you need to really wake up, even the four shots in a Quad will only spend 20 calories
Espresso Con Panna
Love your coffee topped with whipped cream? Then this your best choice – a Solo has just 30 calories. And, because if you upsize, the cream stays the same, only the coffee gets increased, even a Quad size is only 45 calories.
A flat white with whole milk just tips over your calorie budget at 110 calories, but if you swap to Almond Milk you’re all good. Pick up a Short Honey Almond Flat White – 80 calories.
You can also swap to 2% or non-fat milk which would cut calories further – unfortunately, the nutrition calculator doesn’t say how many by.
If you like your coffee heavy on the milk, then lattes are the way to go – but this does raise the calories (although, hello calcium!)
If you want to stick on target pick a Short Caffe Latte at 100 calories
The best of all worlds – espresso topped with a splash of milk and foam. The smallest size has just 10 calories, upgrade to the largest and it’s still only 25 calories.
I never think of Starbucks as somewhere to go for tea, mostly because I’m British and am therefore very fussy about my tea – but I really like the sound of a lot of these choices.
Most of the drinks in this section can also be counted among the healthier drinks in Starbucks. The majority don’t contain extra sugar (the Lattes and the Honey tea do have some). Tea is also a good source of antioxidants.
Remember, while the numbers below are for black tea, a splash of no fat or 2% milk is only going to add a handful of calories – and supplies a little calcium with your drink.
If you prefer lemon with your tea, that’s even better – it’s been shown that lemon helps shuttle the antioxidants in green tea into the part of the gut where they are best absorbed – and it’s believed it works in black tea too.
So what low-calorie teas are there to choose from?
Warm, spiced and a bit like a hug in a mug, a black Chai Tea (no additions) in any size has zero calories. You would normally add a splash of milk to a chai though.
If you’d like to know more about the health benefits of chai tea (and chai latte) check out our longer post here.
Starbucks offer a few different options in their ‘black tea’ category, some served ‘neat’ so you can add your own milk or lemon and others in more of a latte style.
If you pick the former, you’re looking at zero calories for any size of Earl Grey or Royal English Breakfast Tea with no milk.
If like me, you like the sound of the lattes, the Short Royal English Breakfast Tea Latte has slightly fewer calories than the Short London Fog Tea Latte – 80 calories compared to 90 in the London Fog.
Plain green tea – known in Starbucks as Emperor’s Clouds and Mist has no calories at all. Neither does the Jade Citrus Mint Tea.
If you want something a bit sweeter, the Short Honey Citrus Mint Tea (no additions) has 60 calories and you’ll add 20 calories if you upgrade to a tall size.
Herbal teas are always a great choice when you’re watching calories and it’s no exception at Starbucks – both the Mint Majesty and Peach Tranquility versions have no calories at all – no matter what size you order.
Other Hot Drinks
Most of these are over our 100 calorie limit, but there is one option…
Short Steamed Milk (2% milk) – 100 calories
It’s a pretty good choice though. Studies show that people who consume dairy while watching their calories actually lose more weight than those who skip it.
Definitely another healthy choice at Starbucks even if it isn’t the lowest in calories. It’s also sugar free – the only sugars in it are natural ones from the milk.
Considering they contain yummy goodies like whipped cream and syrups and they don’t come in the smallest cup size, it’s probably not surprising there are no low-calorie Starbucks Frappucino. Everything is listed as over 100 calories.
The closest is the Tall Espresso Frappucino at 140 calories.
If Frappucino is your drink of choice and you’re watching your calories definitely try and choose the smallest size on offer – and, see if you can have sugar-free syrup.
So many choices here – possibly because ice takes up some of the room in the cup. I actually wished I liked coffee after going through all of these, some of them sound super yummy.
Cold Brew is actually a method of brewing coffee where it’s steeped in cold water for many hours. It’s said to give a much smoother flavour. While you can serve cold brewed coffee hot – the Cold Brews here are all served with ice
Three sizes of the Honey Almondmilk Cold Brew come in under 100 calories. Pick the Tall at just 30 calories or the Grande has 50, Venti has 80.
Cold Brew and Reserve Cold Brew – all sizes (no additions) have less than 5 calories if you drink them black – and a splash of milk definitely won’t take you past 25 calories.
The Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew is the one that made me wish I liked coffee. A Tall serving is just 90 calories but mixes coffee, vanilla and sweet cream. Yum!
If you want a little more milk with your coffee pick the Cold Brew Coffee with Milk. Even the super large Trenta comes in under budget with 70 calories – the smallest size, the Tall is just 25 calories.
Nitro Cold Brews
These sound super high-tech. The coffee is not only cold brewed but they use nitrogen to bump up the sweetness without adding extra sugar. If your sweet tooth normally bumps up your calories – it might be worth looking at one of these.
The plain coffee Nitro Cold Brew and Reserve Cold Brew drunk black all have 5 calories or less – no matter which size you choose, if you want something with milk, look at the Tall Honey Almondmilk Nitro Cold Brew – 30 calories or get a Grande at 50 calories. Or try the Nitro Cold Brew with Sweet Cream – both sizes are 70 calories
Who knew you could do so many things with coffee, ice and milk! Here’s all your low cal Starbucks drinks in this category
Espresso, ice and water. No fuss, all the taste, hardly any calories. Any size of an Iced Caffe Americano has 15 calories or less.
Another simple choice would be Iced version of the Coffee Blends – these all contain 5 calories or less.
If you have more of a sweet tooth, then the Starbucks Iced Coffee adds a little Syrup to the mix. A tall Iced Coffee has 60 calories and you’ll add another 20 if you upsize to a Grande. They do give the option to swap to a zero-calorie sweetener too if you’re looking for something sugar-free.
If you’d prefer something creamy, you can get a Tall Iced Coffee with Milk for 80 calories.
Need the fuel from an Espresso but not the heat. Pick an Iced Espresso. The Short size has just five calories, the Quad is still only 25.
I like to think of a Shaken Espresso as how James Bond wakes up in the morning. It’s a mix of espresso, sugar, cinnamon and milk – but despite that, a few of them come under 100 calories. Pick from a Tall Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso at 90 calories or a Tall Iced Chocolate Almondmilk Shaken Espresso at 80 calories. Yes, CHOCOLATE!
As with the hot Flat White, the larger serving size and the milk means most Iced Flat Whites sneak over our limit – the exception is the Tall Iced Honey Almondmilk Flat White at 100 calories. You can also spend the same amount on a Tall Iced Cafe Latte.
Another section that surprised me with how many low-calorie options there were.
I know that plain tea has zero calories a cup, but I often associated iced tea with lots of sugar and therefore thought there would also be lots of calories – good news is, that isn’t the case – but if you’re watching your carbs, just check some of the sugar counts as they can be high, especially in the larger servings.
Teavana® has some really unusual tea options in their range – and a few are available in Starbucks ready made section.
Have a look at Teavana® Sparkling Unsweetened Peach Nectarine Green Tea which has zero calories
If you feel like something fizzy, then go for Teavana® Sparkling Blood Orange Mango White Tea at 80 calories
Or keep things simple with the Teavana® Mango Black Tea at 100 calories
Iced Black Teas
Top marks for exciting sounding names…
Pick the Iced Guava Black Tea which mixes guava fruit juice with tea and you’ll be looking at 50 calories for a Tall serving – a Venti doubles that to 100.
The Lemonade version of these teas adds a mix of lemon juice and sugar to the original. This ups the calories slightly so, the Tall Guava Black Iced Tea Lemonade is 70 calories, the Grande is 90 calories
Plain Iced Black Tea (all sizes) made from black tea and ice with nothing else has zero calories and zero sugar. If you want to add the ‘lemonade’ mix and order an Iced Black Tea Lemonade then it increases to 30 calories for a Tall while a Trenta is 90 calories.
They also do the Tea Lattes in Iced form. Try a Tall Iced Royal English Breakfast Tea Latte or a Tall Iced London Fog Tea Latte for 100 calories each.
Iced Green Teas
Green tea is generally one of the healthier drinks you can consume – but, double check the sugar in the mixed drinks.
Iced Peach Green Tea mixes peach juice with Green Tea. The lowest calorie choice is the Tall size at 45 calories – a Venti will double that. Again, they offer the lemonade option here – a tall Iced Peach Green Tea Lemonade is 60 calories or you can have a Grande for 80.
Fancy something cold but with NO calories – go for any size of Iced Green Tea.
If you want to go for the Lemonade, a Tall Iced Green Tea Lemonade has 35 calories. The Trenta has 90 calories.
If you like your green tea a bit stronger, try the Tall Matcha Lemonade instead. It’s 90 calories
Iced Herbal Teas
The Passion Tango tea combines hibiscus, lemongrass, apple and ice. Served just as is, it also has no calories.
If you pick the lemonade version it’s 35 calories in a tall serving and goes up to 90 in a Trenta.
Star Drink mixes coconut milk, ice, starfruit and kiwi pieces and juice in a yummy 100 calorie concoction for the tall size.
Not keen on coconut milk, pick the Kiwi Starfruit Starbucks Refreshers® Beverage which leaves it out. It’s 70 calories for the tall and 90 calories for the Grande.
Dragon Drink is pink, Instagram-friendly and made from mango, dragonfruit and coconut milk. The tall size is 100 calories.
As before there’s a coconut milk free version – the Tall Mango Dragonfruit Starbucks Refreshers® Beverage – 70 calories. The Grande is 90.
The Pink Drink contains Strawberry and Acai with Coconut milk but doesn’t quite sneak under our limit – however, the tall Strawberry Açaí Starbucks Refreshers® Beverage does at 80 calories. The Grande version has just 10 more.
The Violet Drink – blackberries, hibiscus and coconut milk all swirled together in a 90 calorie treat (tall size)
Again, if you want to skip the coconut milk pick the Very Berry Hibiscus Lemonade Starbucks Refreshers® Beverage – the tall is 50 calories, Venti is 90 calories.
So, there you have it – 63 drinks under 100 calories you can order in Starbucks. I’m impressed – I really didn’t expect to find so many options. If you’e now desperate for a coffee, you can place your order online here.
Oh, and if you’re wondering why I haven’t used pictures of the actual products – I’m based in Australia and so couldn’t go into store and photograph them as they might not look the same here as in the US. I’ve therefore used generic shots to illustrate the type of thing I’m talking about.
Who is The Wellness Nerd?
My name is Helen Foster and I’m a health journalist and wellness author. Publications I’ve written for include Women’s Health, Reader’s Digest, Body and Soul, Good Health at the Daily Mail and more. I have also written 16 books on health and nutrition.