Best Starbucks Drinks: Top 5 Favorites Most Recommended Across Expert Reviews

Starbucks has a cult following. “Tall,” “grande” and “venti” are like part of a secret language only spoken by Starbucks’ customers (and avoided by the haters). Its most devoted fans surely can’t go a day without a cup of their favorite coffee or espresso cocktail — poured in their favorite Starbucks mug from over the years. But with such a vast menu and so many beloved seasonal options to choose from, we wanted to know which were considered the best Starbucks drinks according to coffee experts.

Interestingly, how often you place a Starbucks order, secret or not, may be based on age. A study found that millennials struggle a bit more than previous generations with financial vices, especially when it comes to eating out or Starbucks runs. According to the survey’s results, 29 percent of millennials buy coffee at least three times a week. 

There’s been many studies on why Starbucks appeals to so many people. It’s not even all about the coffee. They deliver the same experience regardless of store or country. They personalize the experience, writing your name on the world-famous cup. They make you feel like you are special when you’re at Starbucks. Because of these brand qualities, Starbucks is one of the 30 most recognizable brands in the U.S.

So, the next time you step into a Starbucks or go in the drive-thru, you may want to try one the following drinks — they’ve been rated as the best on the menu by brand experts. Hopefully this list will inspire you to try something new! You may also have an opinion about our Best Dunkin’ Donuts, According To Experts list too!

white and brown starbucks coffee cup on brown wooden table
(Photo by Angelica Reyes on Unsplash)

The List: Top 5 Starbucks Drinks, Ranked By Experts 

1. Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso

Being in the No. 1 spot must feel sweet like brown sugar.

“Our favorite Starbucks drink is the Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso. Sure the name of this coffee is longer than the name of certain Game of Thrones characters, and it might take you the whole morning to order it. The brown sugar brings in a subtle caramel taste without hiding the real taste of coffee completely. The oat milk makes it nice and creamy, and the ‘shaken’ aspect amplifies the frothiness,” Let’s Eat Cake writes.

It’s nostalgia in a cup, according to TastingTable: “Baristas add ground cinnamon, Blonde espresso shots, and four pumps of brown sugar syrup together, then shake them. The result is a drink that’s already been perfectly mixed. Also, the brown sugar flavor is nostalgic and sensory (just like how Starbucks wants to be). It’s there to remind you of simple memories like baking cookies while sipping your morning coffee.”

2. Vanilla Latte

Classic, not boring may be the simplest way to describe Starbucks’ vanilla latte.

Full Coffee Roast recommends it a ‘latte,’ saying, “The Vanilla Latte, despite being a pretty simple drink, [is] on this list due to its sheer popularity. You might regularly see this online in those iconic white cups. The recipe for Vanilla Latte is very simple espresso, vanilla syrup, steamed milk, with a thin layer of foam. You can add hazelnut syrup to turn this drink into a French Vanilla Latte.”

“One of the most basic Starbucks drinks on the menu, right next to the classic cappuccino, the vanilla latte remains one of the most popular drinks even today. The recipe is simple: vanilla syrup, espresso, steamed milk, and a little bit of foam on top.” Sip Coffee writes.

3. Pumpkin Spice Latte 

Also known as: PSL, the Pumpkin Spice Latter is perhaps the most well-known seasonal Starbucks drink. In fact, this beloved favorite is so clamored-for, news outlets often do stories about its reappearance on menus in the fall.

Delish is all about the Pumpkin Spice, writing, “The PSL is the ultimate perennial fav, the reason people quite literally swarm Starbucks’ mentions starting August 1st every year. Sweet pumpkin, deep espresso, and spices? Sign. Us. Up. Every. Single. Time.” 

Pumpkin Spice is everything nice for Brew That Coffee: “Enjoy all your favorite things with a delicious Pumpkin Spice Latte. Rich espresso is combined with steamed milk and the perfect blend of pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove flavors. Topped with whipped cream and real pumpkin pie spices, it’s the perfect way to enjoy the tastes of autumn.”

4. Nitro Cold Brew with Sweet Cream

This energy-boosting favorite is both smooth and sweet. 

“Starbucks regular Nitro Cold Brew is smooth and creamy, but the version with sweet cream added is even smoother and creamier, which we didn’t think was possible,” according to Coffee Affection.

Roasty Coffee likes this cold drink, saying, “Try this nitrogen-infused cold brew beverage served over ice and topped with a healthy serving of house-made sweet cream cold foam. The texture is to die for velvety and smooth, with just the right amount of sweetness without overpowering the coffee. What makes the Nitro Cold Brew so special is that the nitrogen infusion gives the coffee a smooth and almost frothy texture, which tastes unlike anything else!”

5. Caffè Latte

Above Average Coffee ranks this latte above the rest, saying, “This is the classic Starbucks latte made with their signature roast coffee. The Caffè Latte is the perfect all-rounder … perfect hot or cold!”

A simple and sweet review from The Teal Mango says: “You can never really go wrong with the classic item. Frothy steamed milk espresso hits the spot like no other!”

Editor’s Choice: Chai Tea Latte

“Yes, Starbucks is a coffee shop first — but let’s not forget it’s got some decent tea options too. Though I’ve only turned into a coffee drinker myself in the past couple of years, the Starbucks’ Chai Tea Latte is still a favorite of mine when I’m in the mood for something other than coffee that’s sweet and will give me a jolt,” says StudyFinds Editor-in-Chief Steve Fink. “It’s not going to wake me up like a caffe latte might, but it definitely for a nice midday treat!”

What’s your favorite Starbucks drink? Any that you want to try? Let us know in the comments below.

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Note: This article was not paid for nor sponsored. StudyFinds is not connected to nor partnered with any of the brands mentioned and receives no compensation for its recommendations.


  1. All time favorite and it kills me it’s seasonal! Irish Cream Cold Brew!! The chocolate malt powder seals the deal! It’s TO DIE FOR!! I LOVE IT!! #CoffeeAddict

  2. My favorite is PSL & Iced peach green tea. So disappointed that my Starbucks store has been out of the peach tea for the longest time.

  3. I get the Salted Caramel Mocha Latte just about every time. It’s discontinued but they still have the ingredients. It is sooo delicious 😋

  4. I Love the Carmel Ribbon crunch Venti, with Xtra Carmel Xtra Crunch !!! Yummy!!!! Next is the Cinnamon Dolce….LOVE LOVE

  5. My 2 go tos are a dirty Chai latte with 2 shot of espresso, or a peppermint mocha with chocolate peppermint cold foam.

  6. I also love the shaken espresso..I get mine with almond milk but they put too much ice in it. When I’ve finished it, I still have a cup full of ice!! 😳

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