I think I might stop at Starbucks before my workout today, because the company released two plant-based protein drinks that sound irresistible. The new Protein Blended Cold Brews were unveiled on Tuesday, Aug. 14, and are available at participating Starbucks stores while supplies last. I know for a fact I'm going to drink 'em up while they're around, because I'm all about delicious bevs' with a healthy kick. Not to mention, the photos of Starbucks' Protein Blended Cold Brews are luring me in just as much as the ingredients are. Sure, they don't look as colorful as select Frappuccinos, but I'm still drawn to their creamy aesthetic.
Starbucks' new plant-based protein drinks — which include the Almond Protein Blended Cold Brew and the Cacao Protein Blended Cold Brew — are both tan in color. There are no vibrant swirls or sparkling sprinkles, so don't expect the typical Frappuccino frills when you order one. Instead, the drinks have a simple, neutral appearance that reflects their natural ingredients.
Speaking of natural ingredients, both of these protein drinks are vegan. However, they aren't certified vegan after they're made, because Starbucks uses shared equipment and tools while preparing various drinks.
Before I tell you more about how they're concocted, let's take a close look at each blended beverage. If you're into earth tones, you might want to post of picture of them on Instagram.
Almond Protein Blended Cold Brew
Cacao Protein Blended Cold Brew
As you can see, each Protein Blended Cold Brew has a neutral appearance (kind of like a typical Coffee Frappuccino). The Almond Protein Blended Cold Brew has a lighter hue than the Cacao Protein Blended Cold Brew, but they're both extremely similar. Even so, their ingredients are very different — so let's talk about what they're made of.
The Almond Protein Blended Cold Brew is perfect for people who love almond milk (like me). To make this drink, baristas blend Starbucks Cold Brew with Almondmilk, almond butter, plant-based protein, Banana Date Fruit Blend, and, of course, ice. The finished product is sweet — but not too sweet — and includes 12 grams of protein. I'd totally sip on one of these before a gym session.
Starbucks' Cacao Protein Blended Cold Brew sounds just as appealing. Instead of blending Starbucks Cold Brew with Almondmilk, baristas blend it with Coconutmilk. Then, they add in cacao powder, Banana Date Fruit Blend, plant-based protein, and ice. This one has a subtle chocolatey taste, and includes 10 grams of protein. After knowing more about the ingredients involved in the cacao version, it's going to be hard to choose which drink I want to try first.
Let's face it, though: I'll be trying both in no time.
After you try each version of Starbucks' Protein Blended Cold Brews, you might feel compelled to experiment a little bit. If that's the case, Starbucks suggests "making the flavor yours" by replacing the Banana Date Fruit Blend with a real banana. You can also double the amount of plant-based protein to your drink by adding another packet to your cup. If you'd rather taste more coffee, though, request an extra shot of Starbucks Espresso Roast. For more information on how to customize your protein drink, check out Starbucks' press release.
I don't know about you, but I'm ready to swap my typical coffee order for a plant-based protein blend.