17 Best Starbucks Espresso Drinks You Need To Try

The menu at Starbucks seems to get bigger every year.

It’s easy to forget just how many espresso drinks there are.

In this article, I’ll give you the best Starbucks espresso drinks you can try next time you’re making a coffee run!

Let’s jump in.

17 Best Starbucks Espresso Drinks You Need To Try

This list contains all my favorite espresso-based drinks at Starbucks.

They aren’t in any particular order, and they are all great options for adding espresso to your life.

1. Latte

starbucks latte
Photo from: @starbucks_latte_y

With all the hype and hoopla about Starbucks’ fancy holiday drinks and sugary creations, it can be easy to forget that they have regular lattes.

If you’re in the mood for some espresso and a little frothed milk, then try just a standard latte.

The espresso is Starbucks’ own blend and roast. You can choose any milk that they offer, from whole milk to soy.

2. Cappuccino

Along the same lines as the latte, many people forget that Starbucks has a regular cappuccino.

Want a little more foam in your espresso?

Well then, the cappuccino is the way to go.

Both the latte and cappuccino are great ways to enjoy coffee without all the sugar.

But, if you want a little extra sweetness, try adding a single pump of chocolate syrup to your cappuccino.

3. Cafe Americano

starbucks cafe americano
Photo from: @impatientpatient

If you’re not familiar with Americanos, all you need to know is that it’s an espresso and hot water.

They are often considered alternatives to brewed coffee. You’ll get the classic Starbucks espresso taste, just diluted in some hot water to give you more volume.

Americanos are great drinks for when brewed coffee just doesn’t feel right, but you don’t want to add a bunch of milk.

4. Flat White

Thanks to the Aussies, we have the flat white.

It’s a little different from a latte, but it has the same ingredients: espresso and milk.

Really the only difference is that flat white milk is thinner and less foamy.

So, it’s a perfect choice if you want steamed milk in your espresso but no foam.

5. Caramel Macchiato

starbucks caramel macchiato
Photo from: @karinadellipaoli

The caramel macchiato is a titan on the Starbucks menu. It’s one of the most popular drinks they have.

First goes in the milk, then the espresso, then the caramel. The milk is foamed kind of like a cappuccino. The macchiato is fluffy and tasty.

Think of it like an upsidedown latte with caramel sauce.

In the summer, try an iced caramel macchiato.

6. Espresso Macchiato

Starbucks has a little-known traditional macchiato. They call it the espresso macchiato.

Don’t get confused.

The espresso macchiato and caramel macchiato are very different.

An espresso macchiato is a single or double shot of espresso with one or two spoonfuls of foamed milk on top.

It’s only about a 4oz drink at its biggest. But if you’re looking for a little espresso and milk, I’d recommend giving the espresso macchiato a try.

7. Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso

Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso
Photo from: @roulinstudio

This is my preferred September drink.

Why?

Because it’s iced but still has all the autumn flavors that I like.

Brown sugar, oat milk, and espresso are all combined over ice and shaken in a cocktail shaker before serving.

It’s a delicious way to combine ingredients. And trust me, you’ll love it when you try it.

8. Peppermint Mocha

Another classic on the Starbucks menu, the peppermint mocha has been around a long time.

It’s like a regular mocha, but with peppermint syrup added to the mix. It’s a favorite around the holidays. And for good reason.

Espresso gets mixed with frothed milk, chocolate, and peppermint syrup into a sweet and delicious mocha.

For the summer months, there’s even a peppermint mocha Frappuccino.

9. Pumpkin Spice Latte

Do I even need to say anything about the pumpkin spice latte?

After all, it’s maybe the most famous Starbucks drink ever. It’s a regular latte, but with pumpkin spice added.

But I bet you didn’t know that pumpkin spice is just cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.

You can enjoy this latte hot or iced. But either way, it’s a great drink that is popular for a reason.

10. Apple Crisp Macchiato

The lesser known cousin to the pumpkin spice latte, the apple crisp macchiato is another great autumn espresso drink.

It’s an espresso drink made with milk, apple, and brown sugar to give it that crisp apple pie flavor.

If you’re like me and don’t think pumpkin is as great as it’s cracked up to be, then give the apple crisp macchiato a try.

You’ll thank me later.

11. Dirty Chai Tea Latte

Dirty Chai Tea Latte
Photo from: @smithfield_place

While you might be familiar with a chai tea latte (chai spices with steamed milk), you might not be aware that adding a shot or two of espresso has its own name.

That’s right, we call it a dirty chai.

It’s a great way to combine the taste of chai spices with coffee. 

I prefer my chai spicy, and adding an espresso shot to the mix rounds out the flavor and gives me a little extra punch.

12. Espresso Con Panna

This is a little-known drink that I think more people should try.

It’s a single or double shot of espresso with whipped cream.

Think of it like an espresso macchiato, but instead of foam, you get whipped cream.

It’s perfect for people who like a sweeter espresso drink but don’t want all the milk.

Give it a shot next time you need a quick, sweet pick-me-up.

13. Honey Almond milk Flat White

Honey Almond milk Flat White
Photo from: @dena_artfine

This is a variation on the classic flat white.

It’s made with honey syrup and almond milk, but the milk is steamed a little thinner than a latte.

I like almond milk in my flat whites because of the taste. You get a nutty and earthy taste to your drink that pairs really well with the honey and espresso.

All around, this is a great option for dairy-free coffee.

14. Cinnamon Dolce Latte

Are you tired of regular lattes or pumpkin spice lattes?

Well then, I’d recommend trying the cinnamon dolce latte.

It’s espresso, steamed milk, and cinnamon dolce syrup all in the same drink.

Then it’s topped with sweetened whipped cream.

It’s a subtler taste than a vanilla or pumpkin spice latte, so if you’re looking for something a little mellower it’s a great choice.

15. Iced Chocolate Almond Milk Shaken Espresso

Iced Chocolate Almond Milk Shaken Espresso
Photo from: @maggiepluscoffee

Personally, I love chocolate and almond milk together. They just seem to pair really well with each other.

That’s why I love the iced shaken chocolate almond milk espresso.

It’s a great iced espresso drink that’s as refreshing as it is invigorating.

Try adding an extra pump of chocolate for an even sweeter afternoon sipper.

16. Iced Starbucks Blonde Vanilla Latte

What’s a Blonde latte? 

Glad you asked. It’s a latte made with Blonde espresso instead of regular espresso.

Blonde espresso is a little lighter and sweeter than regular espresso.

So, if you’re looking to cut back on the sugar in your vanilla latte, try getting it Blonde. 

The sweetness of the espresso comes through, and you won’t need as much vanilla syrup in your drink.

17. Iced White Chocolate Mocha

Iced White Chocolate Mocha
Photo from: @alichka01

White chocolate mochas used to be my go-to drink. And in the summers, I would always get them iced.

It’s espresso, milk, and a few pumps of white chocolate all mixed and poured over ice.

White chocolate mochas are an easy choice for a simple and delicious iced espresso drink.

But be aware that if you’re dairy-free, you should avoid white chocolate.

What do all the Starbucks espresso names mean?

Starbucks literally created an entire naming scheme for their menu.

It was supposed to feel more authentic to Italian coffee houses.

But the result was confusing and frustrating for first-time customers.

Especially when talking about espresso shots.

But don’t worry, it’s actually pretty simple when you break it down and explain what each word means.

In the chart below, you’ll find all the espresso shot quantities and their names, and there’s even the caffeine content for each one:

AmountNameCaffeine
1 shot (1 oz.)Single/SoloAbout 75mg
2 shots (2 oz.)Double/DoppioAbout 150mg
3 shots (3 oz.)TripleAbout 225mg
4 shots (4 oz.)QuadAbout 300mg
1 shot decaf (1 oz.)Single/Solo DecafAbout 3mg
1 shot half-caf (1 oz.)Single/Solo Half-CafAbout 40 mg

FAQ

You might still have some burning questions about Starbucks espresso drinks.

I tried to answer the most important ones in this section.

Can you add a shot of espresso to any Starbucks drink?

Pretty much!

You can always add an extra expresso shot to any espresso drink. And you can add espresso to most other drinks as well.

But for drinks like Refreshers or juice, you might just get weird looks from the barista.

Which Starbucks drink has the most espresso?

Iced Venti espresso drinks have the most standard espresso. They come with three shots of espresso.

But you can always add a shot of espresso to a smaller drink!

Do all Starbucks drinks have espresso?

Not all of them. Any hot brewed coffee, cold brew, or juice-based drinks won’t have any espresso at all.

Bottom Line

The Starbucks menu is huge. There are so many options that it can be confusing to pick one.

This list covers my favorite espresso drinks on the menu right now.

But if you’re looking for my top suggestion, I’d go with the peppermint mocha.

It’s a wonderful variation on the classic mocha. It adds peppermint syrup to the chocolate flavor.

And who doesn’t love peppermint chocolate?

Happy sipping!

Looking for a caffeine boost at Starbucks? Check out our article on the strongest coffee at Starbucks!

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Craig Carey
Craig spent a year as a barista in Denver's specialty coffee world. He spends his days rock climbing, cycling, drinking espresso, and hanging around the Rocky Mountains. He still lives in Colorado.