Is the Paradise Drink vegan? Here's what you need to know.

Vegans, Here's What To Know About Starbucks' Non-Dairy Paradise Drink

It gets tricky.

Courtesy of Starbucks

There’s a new sip at Starbucks that’s taking over summer. On June 21, the coffee giant launched its newest additions to the Refreshers lineup, the Paradise Drink and the Pineapple Passionfruit Refresher, and they’re just as refreshing as their names imply. That being said, if you’ve got some dietary restrictions, you probably want to know if the non-dairy Paradise Drink is vegan before you make the trek to your local Starbs. Here’s what you need to know about the new Starbucks sip.

It looks like the summer solstice is about to get upstaged by some new sips at Starbucks, but I’m not mad about it. The Pineapple Passionfruit Refresher and the Paradise Drink were added to the summer lineup on June 21 — and they’re already making a splash. In case you were wondering, the Pineapple Passionfruit Refresher is made with pineapple and passionfruit flavors that’ve been hand shaken together with real diced pineapple bits and ice for to make the perfect poolside sip. Meanwhile, the Paradise Drink features the same ingredients, as well as a serving of coconut milk to give it a thick and creamy body that’s not unlike a piña colada.

Because the drinks are dairy-free, you’d probably be quick to assume the Paradise Drink is vegan. However, you might want to keep doing some digging before you jump to that conclusion.

First, if you’re a true Starbucks stan, you know that due to the way in which the company operates its stores and the possibility of cross-contamination, Starbucks doesn’t label any of its drinks as certified vegan. I know, it’s a bummer. Also, the Paradise Drink appears to be free of animal products since it doesn’t use cow’s milk, but there are some ingredients in the diary-free sip that might also have come from animal sources. Gellan gum, a stabilizing food additive is used in Starbucks’ coconut milk, and it’s generally vegan, but can sometimes come from the fermentation of lactose, which would make it not vegan.

When it comes to chain stores, you’re likely not going to be able to find many certified vegan options (due to cross-contamination), but you can find plenty of animal-free and dairy-free products. So, if the vegan certification isn’t a dealbreaker for you, you can still take solace in the fact that the Paradise Drink is considered to be dairy-free. And if you don’t want any milk in your Refresher at all, opt for the OG Pineapple Passionfruit Refresher, and you can even add lemonade to it for a super summery sip.