Vegan Guide to Starbucks: The Best Menu Options and Swaps

From drinks to protein bowls, the coffee chain has plenty to offer vegans.

Vegan starbucks

Treehugger / Catherine Song

Starbucks has been very public about its sustainability commitment, which includes expanding vegan options at its restaurants to emerge as an authentically “resource positive" chain. To Starbucks' credit, vegans now have more options than ever on the Starbucks menu. The vegan drink options are especially strong and varied, but there’s a healthy variety of vegan snack and meal options, too. 

Ready to place your order? Here's our guide to eating and drinking vegan at Starbucks.

Our Top Picks

There's no shortage of vegan hot and cold beverages at Starbucks. The vegan food selections are a bit more limited, but our favorites are all flavorful and filling.

Iced Brown Sugar Oat Milk Shaken Espresso

Think of it as a chilled liquid oatmeal cookie when it's ordered with oat milk and served over ice. 

Plant-Based Breakfast Sandwich

Many chains tested their plant-based version of the popular breakfast sausage sandwich, but only the Starbucks version made the permanent menu cut in most areas. The plant-based twist on the standard breakfast sandwich includes an Impossible Sausage patty, a plant-based egg patty, and a melted, plant-based cheddar-style slice atop a toasted whole-wheat English muffin.

Lentils & Vegetable Protein Bowl With Brown Rice

There’s a lot of rich, earthy flavor as well as protein in this satisfying blend of lentils, butternut squash, roasted tomatoes, and lemon-tahini dressing, served over brown rice and finished with crunchy sunflower seeds.

​Chickpea Bites & Avocado Protein Box

Starbucks' latest protein-packed, plant-based, non-breakfast item brings together falafel-like chickpea bites, snap peas, carrots, avocado dip, and a nut mix.

Vegan Cold Drinks

These refreshing, plant-based drinks are all available on the regular menu. Order, adapt your favorite drink, add ice, and enjoy.

  • Iced Nitro Cold Brew with or without non-dairy milk
  • Iced Shaken Espresso (plain)
  • Iced Brown Sugar Oat Milk Shaken Espresso
  • Iced Chocolate Almond Milk Shaken Espresso
  • Ombre Iced Coffee with non-dairy milk
  • Iced Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Latte
  • Iced Salted Caramel Mocha with non-dairy milk and 1-2 pumps of caramel syrup 
  • Caramel Cocoa Cluster Frappuccino with 1-2 pumps of caramel syrup and oat or coconut milk
  • Green Tea Latte with non-dairy milk
  • Matcha Lemonade
  • Matcha Frappuccino with non-dairy milk. 
  • Iced Matcha Green Tea Latte with non-dairy milk of choice
  • Vegan Nutella Frappuccino made with non-dairy milk and hazelnut syrup
  • Vegan Dragon Drink (Mango Dragonfruit Refresher with freeze-dried dragonfruit pieces with coconut milk)
  • Pink Drink (Strawberry Acai Refresher with coconut milk and a scoop of strawberries or blackberries)
  • Kiwi Starfruit Refresher with non-dairy milk
  • Kiwi Starfruit Refresher with lemonade
  • Violet Drink (Very Berry Hibiscus refresher made with coconut milk and a scoop of blackberries)
  • Matcha Pink Drink (three-parts Pink Drink, one-part matcha with coconut milk on ice)
  • Iced Pineapple Matcha Drink
  • Iced Golden Ginger Drink

Treehugger Tip

To recreate the Chocolate Chip Frappuccino, make sure to choose non-dairy milk and replace the chocolate chips with vegan Chocolate Cookie Grind Topping.

Vegan Hot Drinks

These rich and creamy drink selections are vegan when ordered with your preferred non-dairy milk.

  • Cappuccinos and lattes 
  • Cinnamon Dolce Latte, no cinnamon dolce topping
  • Blonde Vanilla Latte
  • Almond Milk Flat White, minus the honey syrup
  • Caramel Macchiato, swap out caramel sauce with caramel syrup
  • Caffe Mocha 
  • Matcha tea latte 
  • Seasonal or special tea lattes, no honey syrup
  • Hot chocolate drinks (except white hot chocolate)
  • Caramel Apple Spice, swap caramel sauce with caramel syrup
  • Steamers ordered with non-dairy milk and no whipped cream

Drink Extras to Avoid

When placing your order, ask your barista to leave out the following non-vegan additions:

  • Whipped cream
  • Caramel sauce (substitute with the non-dairy caramel syrup)
  • Most coffee sauces (only the basic mocha sauce is vegan)
  • Any chocolate or java chips
  • Cinnamon dolce topping
  • Honey
  • Protein powder, which may contain whey or other animal products

Vegan Breakfast Items

These comforting, healthy breakfast items are the perfect partners for simpler hot drinks. Add a piece of fresh fruit or orange juice for a complete way to start the day.

  • Impossible Breakfast Sandwich with plant-based sausage patty. Order without cheese, or when available, with a non-dairy cheese slice.
  • Classic Oatmeal, ordered with plant-based milk (oat recommended)
  • Hearty Blueberry Oatmeal ordered with plant-based milk (oat recommended)
  • Plain, Everything, Cinnamon Raisin, and Sprouted Grain Bagels
  • Vegan Superberry Acai Mercato Bowl

Vegan Lunch Items

While it would be nice to see more plant-based lunch items, the following vegan lunches are solid options.

  • Chickpea Bites and Avocado Protein Box 
  • Lentils & Vegetable Protein Bowl with Brown Rice
  • Cauliflower tabbouleh (from its “Mercato” range, available limited areas and as an occasional special)

Vegan Sides, Snacks, and Sweets

There are plenty of sweet and salty vegan snacks that are perfect with a to-go coffee or tea. And many are nutritious as well.

  • Hippeas organic chickpea puffs
  • Rhythm Superfoods roasted kale chips
  • Fruit Salad
  • Orange
  • Banana
  • Dried Fruit
  • That’s It Apple & Blueberry Bar
  • That’s It Apple & Mango Bar
  • Mixed Nuts
  • Macadamia Oat Cookie
  • Emmy’s Organic Coconut Cookies (Coconut Vanilla & Dark Cacao)
  • Starbucks Simply Salted, Salt & Vinegar and Sweet Potato Potato Chips

Treehugger Tip

To create a vegan apple pie-flavored Frappucino, start by ordering Vanilla Bean Frappuccino with oat, coconut, or almond milk. Next, request one less scoop of the vanilla bean powder and add in a pump of hazelnut syrup, a touch of apple juice, and a sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg. 

Vegan Condiments

Turn one of Starbucks' vegan-certified bagels into a substantial mini-meal with these options.

  • Organic Avocado Spread
  • Justin’s Classic Almond Butter
  • Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut Butter

FAQs

Does Starbucks offer plant-based creamers?

Starbucks began offering a higher-quality, soy-based creamer to U.S. customers in 1997. In the past decade, as non-dairy beverages grew in popularity, Starbucks broadened its dairy-free options, adding coconut milk in 2015, almond milk in 2016, and oat milk in 2021.

Is the Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks vegan?

Vegans can enjoy a Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks. The chain introduced a dairy-free Pumpkin Spice Latte sauce in 2018, and that combined with a dairy alternative like almond or oat milk makes this fan-favorite seasonal drink vegan.

When will Starbucks have more plant-based food items?

While new plant-based items are being tested in different U.S. markets, the journey to a bigger plant-based menu seems to be clipping along at a faster pace overseas. For Veganuary 2021, the UK branches of Starbucks rolled out more complex vegan breakfast sandwiches, including one with a Beyond Meat sausage patty, tofu scramble, dairy-free cheese, and tomato relish. Based on plant-based trends, we can assume more options are coming to Starbucks in the states—it is simply a matter of when.