Starbucks has a giant menu. Not only do they feature dozens of delectable drinks, but there are hundreds of different drink combinations and secret menu items you can order too. This article will give you the inside scoop on the best lattes you can order at Starbucks.
The best latte at Starbucks is the Caramel Macchiato. The best lattes at Starbucks include the Flat White, Caffe Mocha, Caramel Brulee Latte, Matcha Latte, Starbucks Reserve Latte, Pistachio Latte, Iced Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte, Cinnamon Dolce Latte, Dirty Chai, Iced Honey Oat Milk Latte, Pumpkin Spice Latte, London Fog Latte, Peppermint Mocha, and the Eggnog Latte.
We based our choices on the entire experience of consuming the latte. This includes the balance of the flavors, the texture of the toppings, and the uniqueness of the beverage.
Now, let's dive in.
Best Lattes At Starbucks
1. Caramel Macchiato
The entire experience of drinking the Caramel Macchiato is unmatched. The design of this decadent treat is crafted to be a unique experience in and of itself.
The word macchiato in Italian means “marked with espresso.” This means the espresso shots are poured on top of the steamed or cold milk in a way that makes them sit on top. A Starbucks Caramel Macchiato uses vanilla syrup and is topped with a stunning caramel crosshatch pattern.
What makes this drink so special is the design of the layering. As you sip the beverage, you first taste the rich caramel sauce and espresso. This is immediately followed by the rich vanilla-flavored milk that helps mellow out the espresso's bitterness.
It is worth noting that if you order this beverage as an iced drink and choose to drink it with a straw, the experience will be different. You will be drinking the sweet milk first, and the espresso last. For this reason, you could try ordering your iced caramel macchiato “upside down,” which means mixed.
2. Flat White
Flat whites came from Australia. At first glance, they look similar to a latte, but some key differences make this beverage shine.
First, they are traditionally made with whole milk instead of two-percent milk. This makes them creamier. They also froth much nicer than lower-fat content milk.
Next, the shots are special for two different reasons. Instead of pulling regular shots that take between 18-23 seconds to brew, flat whites are made from ristretto shots. Ristretto shots are pulled quicker than traditional shots, which makes them sweeter and fuller in flavor. Instead of having the milk poured over the top, the espresso is delicately poured like a macchiato.
3. Caffé Mocha
Caffé mochas are a classic order at any coffee shop. Starbucks has created so many fun and new variations of the traditional mocha throughout the years, and the sheer customizability is why this classic has made our list.
Try adding caramel drizzle, white chocolate syrup, peppermint syrup, raspberry syrup, or even hazelnut syrup—to name a few options!
4. Caramel Brulee Latte
This classic winter treat is a favorite among many Starbucks drinkers every holiday season. You will probably love the Caramel Brulee Latte if you love caramel lattes or Caramel Macchiatos.
This beverage is crafted from burnt, dark caramel that gives the drink a smokier and richer flavor. It also contains flavor notes of vanilla and white chocolate. This drink is topped with crunchy caramel pieces that give this beverage a fun texture.
5. Matcha Latte
The Iced Matcha Green Tea Latte is a traditional Japanese beverage that Starbucks has adopted and made its own. This powder is made by grinding up green tea leaves and dissolving them in water—unlike regular green tea, which just steeps them in water.
The result is a dark green beverage exploding with flavor and health benefits. However, the Starbucks matcha powder contains sugar to give the drink a more palatable taste. This beverage may not be right for you if you are sensitive to sweetness.
One thing that makes this drink stand out from the others on this list is that it doesn’t have espresso, but it still provides a decent boost of caffeine known to help people focus better without jitters.
While traditional matcha is incredibly healthy, the Iced Matcha Latte is still a healthy Starbucks drink option for those who don’t want espresso.
6. Starbucks Reserve Lattes
Not every location offers Starbucks reserve coffee, but if you are lucky to live near one or see one on your travels, then you’re in for a treat.
Reserve coffee is the highest quality coffee Starbucks offers. These are balanced, small-batch beans grown and harvested ethically and sustainably.
A latte made from reserve beans won’t have fancy flavorings or toppings, but you will probably notice a richer and sweeter flavor profile.
7. Pistachio Latte
This seasonal latte took Starbucks customers by storm. Something almost magical happens when you pair espresso with nutty flavors like pistachio. The real show-stopper of this drink is the topping, though.
The topping for this beverage is a brown butter pistachio mix that rounds out the beverage and adds a wonderful texture.
8. Iced Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte
In the past couple of years, we have seen Starbucks become more and more inclusive toward vegans and those who don’t drink dairy milk. The Iced Sugar Cookie Almond Milk Latte is a great example of this.
The sugar cookie flavoring plays so well with the nutty richness of almond milk. While some drinks don’t taste as good with a milk alternative, we are happy to see beverages designed to taste their best with non-dairy milk.
This drink is completely vegan, but it’s a delectable treat for anyone, regardless of milk or dietary preference.
9. Cinnamon Dolce Latte
The Starbucks Cinnamon Dolce Latte has been a favorite of customers for over a decade. The sweet cinnamon syrup plays so well with the rich espresso shots, and the cinnamon sugar topping sends this beverage over the top!
Some customers worried that the drink had been discontinued in 2020 after it disappeared from all locations. But to their delight, this drink was not discontinued. However, Starbucks was having supply issues with the cinnamon dolce syrup.
For now, though, this beverage is back on the menu for the foreseeable future.
10. Dirty Chai
The Dirty Chai Tea Latte is a modified menu item. While Starbucks' regular chai is incredibly satisfying, both iced and hot, the Dirty Chai takes this to the next level.
When you order a Dirty Chai, your Starbucks barista will first ask you if you’d like to make it a solo or a double. As you probably guessed, baristas ask you how much espresso you’d like in your drink. This is a personal choice based on your caffeine needs.
I prefer one shot in a tall and two in a grande and venti. Any more than this, and the drink becomes a bit too bitter and strong for my taste.
11. Iced Honey Oat Milk Latte
Again, it took a while for Starbucks to jump on the alternative milk bandwagon. Starbucks started offering coconut milk in 2015. Since then, they have also begun offering almond and oat milk.
What we love about the Iced Honey Oat Milk Latte is that Starbucks crafted the beverage to taste its best with the milk alternative. Often, a handcrafted beverage won’t taste as good as alternative milk, but we love seeing drinks that are made to pair perfectly with non-dairy milk.
The Iced Honey Oat Milk Latte is rich, sweet, and satisfying. It’s an ideal choice for those who don’t like traditional cow’s milk or vegans who don’t mind keeping a little honey in their diet.
12. Pumpkin Spice Latte
The Pumpkin Spice Latte has earned itself a cult following. For so many devout Starbucks drinkers, this drink officially marks the beginning of the fall season and sweater weather.
Some psychologists believe that this feeling of nostalgia is why this drink has blossomed into one of Starbucks' most iconic beverages. The annual release of the spiced, creamy, and rich beverage floods customers with holiday cheer. It means family, sitting by the fireplace, and holiday cheer are to come.
Not only that, but the drink itself is a delectable treat. The warm toasted pumpkin flavors and notes of vanilla and cinnamon are incredibly satisfying!
13. London Fog Latte
The London Fog Tea Latte is not a Starbucks original. This beverage originated in Vancouver, Canada. It was made by a pregnant woman who was watching her caffeine intake.
The beverage starts with Earl Gray tea, steeped and mixed with vanilla, then topped with steamed milk. It results in a warm and comforting drink that provides a modest caffeine boost compared to other lattes.
This beverage is originally made with regular cow milk, but it also tastes excellent with alternatives such as coconut milk, almond milk, and oatmilk.
14. Peppermint Mocha
The Peppermint Mocha Latte is essentially just a Caffe Mocha with peppermint syrup added. Starbucks will even add peppermint candy cane toppings during the holiday season, making the drink more delightful.
However, you don’t have to wait for the holiday season to enjoy this delectable beverage. Luckily, this drink is available year-round.
We also highly recommend you try the Peppermint White Chocolate Mocha as well. Instead of using their regular mocha sauce, it is crafted from white mocha sauce.
15. Eggnog Latte
The Christmas season would not be complete without the rich, thick, and delightful Eggnog Latte. This beverage is crafted very similarly to a regular caffe latte, except it uses steamed eggnog instead of steamed milk.
This drink has notes of sweetness and spiciness with a blend of cinnamon and nutmeg in the eggnog. This drink comes hot and iced, and it's wonderful both ways. You will always know when your hot Eggnog Latte is being made because the eggnog produces a very loud screeching sound when the steam wand fills it with bubbles.
Hopefully, you’ve found inspiration for your next Starbucks run and are excited to branch out and try something new.
Remember that your Starbucks barista is always happy to modify your drinks for you. So never be afraid to blend whatever flavors you think would go well together. Starbucks prides itself on its customizability.