- Insider asked 25 chefs to share their favorite foods and drinks to order at Starbucks.
- The chefs highlighted the chain’s cold brew, chai latte, refreshers, and Frappuccinos.
- Some also said they enjoy the different breakfast sandwiches and dessert bars.
In order to help you narrow down Starbucks’ long and ever-changing menu, we asked 25 chefs to tell us their favorite foods or drinks.
Read on to find out what professional chefs like to order at Starbucks.
Elevate your morning coffee with an espresso ‘on the rocks’
Chef Michael Volpatt of Big Bottom Market in Guerneville, California, told Insider that he orders an iced espresso.
“I love Starbucks espresso and order it ‘on the rocks,'” he said. “It’s basically just a double shot of espresso with ice, but I like ordering it that way because it sounds fancy.”
One chef enjoys the sweet mocha-cookie-crumble Frappuccino
Matt Ayala of Bernie’s in Chicago said that he opts for a sweet mocha-cookie-crumble Frappuccino with almond milk.
“Everyone likes cookies, and adding them to coffee makes them even better,” he said. “Plus, the almond milk really amps up the flavor.”
The spinach, feta, and, cage-free egg-white wrap is a chef favorite
Dennis Chan, chef and owner of Blue Bamboo in Jacksonville, Florida, told Insider that he’ll often grab a spinach, feta, and cage-free egg-white wrap from Starbucks.
“If I’m really hungry I’ll order this wrap. However I’ll ask them to heat it two seconds longer than normal to avoid cold spots,” he said.
Espresso con panna is a creamy hit of caffeine
When he needs a quick and indulgent dose of caffeine, chef and recipe developer Jim Mumford orders espresso con panna.
“It’s a double-shot of espresso with whipped cream and the perfect balance between a latte and an affogato,” he said, adding that he usually orders two and takes one to-go.
Starbucks’ golden-ginger drink is a summery treat
The iced golden-ginger drink is made with a base of coconut milk and flavors of pineapple, turmeric, and ginger.
Try the bacon and Gruyère sous-vide egg bites for protein
If you’re looking for a quick snack that won’t weigh you down, chef John Doherty, owner of Black Barn in New York City, recommended the bacon and Gruyère sous-vide egg bites.
“These are one of my favorite Starbucks foods because they are very moist, have great cheese flavor, and have enough protein to hold me over until my next meal,” he said.
Coffee lovers shouldn’t miss the nitro cold brew
“The first time I tried this drink was one of the most amazing coffee experiences I’ve ever had,” he said. “It’s creamy black coffee that tastes like velvet with no dairy.”
Grab the chicken, ham, and cheese panwich for a sweet and savory breakfast
If you can’t decide between sweet and savory, why not get both?
“The chicken, ham, and cheese panwich is a cross between a sandwich and a pancake,” Chris Riley, chef and cofounder of The Daring Kitchen, told Insider. “I love this option because you get two breakfast staples combined in one delicious meal.”
Calorie-conscious customers should check out the unsweetened iced green tea
Starbucks drinks can be indulgent, but the coffee chain also offers a few low-calorie beverages.
“The thing I like to order most from Starbucks is the plain iced green tea with no sweetener,” Chris Lee, chef at Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City, told Insider. “It’s refreshing and has just the right amount of caffeine to get me through the day.”
The spicy chorizo, Monterey jack, and egg sandwich has a little bit of heat
“The smoked paprika from the chorizo is really set off by the notes from the mango black tea, especially the sweetness from the passion fruit and the splash of lemonade,” he said.
The java-chip Frappuccino is a Starbucks classic
Cher Harris, pastry chef at Hershey Entertainment and Resorts, said that she’s a fan of the java-chip Frappuccino.
“I love the chocolaty side of the Starbucks menu, so I’ll sometimes order a java-chip Frappuccino as an afternoon treat,” she said.
Skip the coffee jitters with a matcha latte with almond milk
Chef and founder of Slender Kitchen Kristen McCaffrey told Insider that she likes the mellow caffeine buzz of a matcha latte with almond milk.
“If coffee makes you jittery, matcha is a great alternative that gives you the caffeine punch without the coffee jitters,” she said. “The matcha powder at Starbucks is already sweetened, so you don’t need extra sweetener.”
Try the marshmallow bar for a gluten-free treat
Chef and sommelier Melissa Smith said she adores the chewy Marshmallow Dream Bar at Starbucks.
“It’s a delicious, easy, and gluten-free snack that’s always the perfect consistency,” she said. “I sometimes pair it with a salted-cream cold brew for the caffeine kick.”
Hot-cocoa fans should try the peppermint mocha
“This just has a bit of nostalgia for me and reminds me of Christmas,” she said. “It’s like a grown-up version of hot cocoa.”
The iced white mocha is a sweet treat
Chef Aliyyah Baylor, baker and owner of Make My Cake in New York City, told Insider that she satisfies her sweet tooth with an iced white mocha.
“I order my iced white mocha with plenty of sweet and cold vanilla foam, as well as an extra caramel drizzle,” she said.
One chef loves the tasty bacon, sausage, and egg wrap
Larry Smith, chef at Gordon Ramsay Steak at Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City, told Insider that he likes to keep things simple with a bacon, sausage, and egg wrap.
“I really like this as a snack as it has potatoes, cheddar, and cream cheese inside,” he said. “Who doesn’t like sausage and cream cheese?”
Get a light caffeine buzz and lots of flavor with a chai latte
Chef Matthew Sprister of The Terrace and Hideaway restaurants at The Langham Huntington in Pasadena told Insider that his favorite afternoon pick-me-up is a chai latte.
“I’m a big fan of black tea, and the contrast of sweetness from the cardamom, ginger, cloves, and star anise provides great depths of flavor with the perfect amount of caffeine,” he said.
The oat-and-fudge bar has a great texture
The Starbucks oat-and-fudge bar features a blend of fiber-rich oats and dreamy chocolate, and chef Sarah Groen of Berry Hill Food Co. in Ontario told Insider that it’s one of her favorite treats.
“This snack is a good mix of sweet and not-so-sweet,” she said. “The buttery oats have a great texture that balances out the smooth fudge.”
The Impossible breakfast sandwich is packed with protein
The Impossible breakfast sandwich is made with plant-based soy sausage, and chef Joel Gamoran, host of the A&E series “Scraps,” told Insider that he loves the vegetarian option.
“I was pleasantly surprised at how satisfying and savory this sandwich is,” he said. “Plus, it has even more protein than some of the meat-based breakfast sandwiches on the menu.”
A regular drip coffee with coconut milk is vegan and low in sugar
Chef and cookbook author Mareya Ibrahim told Insider that she seeks out Starbucks menu items that are low-sugar and dairy-free.
“I prefer plain — the plain black drip coffee with a double shot of espresso if I need the caffeine,” she said. “I also like using coconut milk instead of cream.”
The mango-dragon fruit refresher is a sweet and tangy drink
If you’re looking for a hit of sweetness without going overboard, vegan chef and Food Network champion Priyanka Naik told Insider that the mango-dragon fruit refresher is the way to go.
“This drink is beautiful to look at and has the perfect balance of sweetness and tanginess, so you don’t feel overwhelmed by sugar,” she said.
You can lighten up a hot white mocha by halving the sugar
If you want a sweet and simple pick-me-up, chef Michelle Roberts recommended the hot, non-fat white mocha.
“I love this drink with just two pumps of sugar syrup as opposed to the standard four pumps,” she said. “I also order it extra hot so that it will stay warm through the entire time it takes for me to drink it.”
Pumpkin-spice cold brew is perfect for warmer fall days
“I love adding pumpkin spice to the cold brew,” she said. “I also get pumpkin foam, which has enough sweetness that you don’t need to add extra sugar to the coffee.”
You can make a chai Frappuccino ‘dirty’ with a shot of espresso
Chef and nutritional therapist Veronica Wheat told Insider that she recommends the chai Frappuccino for a bit of caffeine and sweetness.
“When I’m traveling and need the energy, I’ll get this with almond or oat milk,” she said. “You can even make it ‘dirty’ with a shot of espresso.”
Try pairing a salted-caramel-mocha-crème Frappuccino with overnight grains
Chef Tariq Nasir told Insider that he tries to forget about the nutritional information when he’s ordering at Starbucks.
“If I’m stopping at Starbucks, I’m prepared to take in lots of calories,” he said. “I order the salted-caramel-mocha-crème Frappuccino with the strawberry overnight grains and revel in the indulgence of it all.”