What Oat Milk Does Starbucks Use and Why It's so Special? 

Updated on: August 5, 2023
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what oat milk does starbucks use

Starbucks is a powerhouse when it comes to creating premium coffee beverages. In recent years, one of the most in-demand non-dairy milks to spring to the forefront has been oat milk.

In this article, we will examine what makes oat milk so special and why it’s the latest trend to take hold of the coffee community. 

And if you’re a Starbucks fan and are wondering, what oat milk does Starbucks use, then read on to find out!

What Oat Milk Does Starbucks Use?

Oatly Starbucks oat milk
Source: Starbucks.com

Starbucks first started using Oatly Barista Edition oat milk in 2020. The Oatly company (a Swedish company) specifically formulated the oat milk for use in coffee beverages to have a smooth and creamy texture when steamed.

Oatly Barista Edition oat milk is made from oats, water, and a few additional ingredients such as rapeseed oil and calcium carbonate. The company doesn’t just use everyday oats. Instead, they use only their own special steel-cut oats to create true quality oat milk flavor.

You may have also noticed the rapeseed oil ingredient. This is added to barista-style oat milk to emulate the creamy texture of dairy milk - especially when frothed. Fat is essential for that perfect latte microfoam!

One of the things that makes the oats from Oatly so special is its sustainability. This oat milk brand uses less land and water than other forms of oats grown around the world. Oatly is a leader in sustainability. The company is completely focused on offering healthy non-dairy choices.

Oat milk is a wonderful choice for people with dietary restrictions because it is vegan-friendly, dairy-free, and nut-free. It's also the perfect choice for anyone seeking a more sustainable and ethical alternative to dairy milk.

At Starbucks, customers can order any of their coffee or espresso-based beverages with Oatly Barista Edition oat milk, including lattes, cappuccinos, and macchiatos. The oat milk is also available as a substitute in Starbucks' signature Frappuccino blended beverages.

The Oatly's oat milk used by Starbucks is unsweetened. You can use it in your favorite coffee or even add it to the ingredient list for baking recipes. However, if you have a sweet tooth then don’t hesitate to ask the Starbucks barista to make your latte a little sweeter.

Consumers will be happy to learn that they can purchase Starbucks oat milk from a variety of stores.

Starbucks Barista Edition Oatly Vs Regular Oatly

Starbucks Barista Edition Oatly and Regular Oatly are two variants of oat milk that have gained popularity among consumers. While both products are made from oats and offer a dairy-free alternative to milk, there are some key differences between the two.

  • Composition: The Starbucks Barista Edition Oatly is specifically formulated to meet the needs of baristas and enhance the performance of coffee-based beverages. It has a slightly different composition compared to Regular Oatly, aiming to create a creamy and frothy texture when steamed. The Barista Edition is designed to withstand the high temperatures and acidity of espresso shots, ensuring a smooth and consistent texture.

  • Taste and Texture: Regular Oatly has a neutral and mild oat flavor, making it versatile for use in various recipes and beverages. It has a creamy consistency and works well as a milk substitute in coffee, tea, and cooking. On the other hand, the Starbucks Barista Edition Oatly is specially developed to complement the flavor of coffee. It is known for its rich and creamy texture, allowing baristas to create lattes and cappuccinos with velvety foam.

  • Availability: While Regular Oatly is widely available in many grocery stores and online platforms, the Starbucks Barista Edition Oatly is primarily distributed to Starbucks locations or authorized suppliers. It may be more challenging to find the Barista Edition for purchase as an individual consumer compared to Regular Oatly. However, you can still find it online at stores such as Amazon.

It's important to note that taste preferences can vary among individuals. Some may prefer the regular Oatly for its versatility, while others may appreciate the enhanced creaminess and performance of the Barista Edition in coffee-based beverages.

In summary, Starbucks Barista Edition Oatly is a variant of oat milk specifically crafted to meet the needs of baristas, providing a creamy and frothy texture in coffee drinks.

Both products provide a plant-based alternative to dairy milk, allowing individuals to choose the option that best suits their preferences and dietary needs.

Why Does the Coffee World Love Oat Milk?

Starbucks uses oatly barista edition

One of the reasons why Starbucks is the leader in the coffee world is that it listens to its customers. After introducing oat milk, the popularity rapidly compounded and Starbucks paid attention to the demand. Coffee drinkers love oat milk!

Oat milk has become popular in the coffee community for several reasons.

One of the main reasons is its taste, texture, and versatility. This non dairy milk has a creamy and slightly sweet taste that can complement the flavor of coffee well. It also has a smooth texture that can create a satisfying and velvety texture in a latte or cappuccino.

Individuals who are living a vegan or dairy-free diet are definitely strong oat milk users.

Besides its delicious flavor and coveted texture, oat milk is an outstanding plant-based milk alternative that is lactose-free and contains no animal products. As more people are looking for plant-based options, oat milk has become a go-to choice for those who want to enjoy their coffee without consuming dairy.

Another big reason for oat milk's popularity is its sustainability.

Oats require less water and land to produce compared to other dairy alternatives like almond milk. This makes this yummy milk a more eco-friendly choice for those who are concerned about the environmental impact of their food choices.

Health-conscious people love oat milk because it’s packed with nutrients like fiber, protein, and vitamins B12 and D. This makes it a healthier option compared to other dairy-free alternative choices that may be high in sugar or artificial additives.

Hands down - the coffee community is in love with oat milk because it offers a fabulous taste with a smooth texture. Further, it’s healthier than dairy milk, very versatile, vegan-friendly, and eco-friendly.

Oat Milk Healthy Benefits

Oat milk has several health benefits that make it a great alternative to dairy milk and other plant-based milk options. It is a perfect choice for individuals who suffer from lactose intolerance.

  • Oat milk is low in saturated fat and cholesterol, which can help to improve heart health and lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.

  • It’s high in fiber, which can help to regulate digestion, reduces cholesterol levels, and lower the risk of colon cancer.

  • Studies have shown oat milk consumed over five weeks can lower cholesterol which leads to improved heart health. (1)

  • Oat milk is often fortified with calcium and vitamin D, which are important nutrients for bone health. However, it should be noted that not all oat milk is fortified so be sure to read the label on the brand you pick. 

Always choose high-quality, minimally processed oat milk for the best-tasting milk and to reap the most health benefits in your coffee drink.

Benefits of Oat Milk vs. Other Milk Types in Coffee

Oat milk has become a popular dairy alternative in coffee beverages.

Let's examine oat milk versus other milk types in coffee beverages. Here are some key differences between oat milk and other types of milk commonly used in coffee beverages:

  • Taste: Oat milk has a slightly sweet and nutty flavor that pairs well with coffee. It is creamier than almond milk, coconut milk, or soy milk, but not as creamy as dairy whole milk.

  • Texture: Oat milk has a slightly thicker texture than other plant-based milk options. Steaming it results in a smooth and velvety texture that is perfect for lattes and even creating latte art.

  • Nutrition: Oat milk is often fortified with nutrients such as calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin B12. It also contains fiber, which is not found in dairy milk or some other plant-based milk options. Another key difference between oat milk versus cow's milk is that it is lower in protein than dairy milk (2).

  • Allergies and intolerances: Oat milk is nut-free and soy-free, making it a great option for those with allergies or intolerances to these foods. However, some people may have an allergy or sensitivity to oats - especially individuals who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or Crohn's disease.

  • Sustainability: Reduce your carbon footprint with oat milk. Much less water and land is needed per cup of oat milk when compared to dairy milk.

Drawbacks of Oat Milk vs. Other Types of Milk in Coffee

Nothing is perfect (except you) so there are a few drawbacks of using oatmilk versus other kinds of milk in your coffee.

  • Low protein content: Oat milk contains less protein compared to cow's milk, which can be a concern for those who rely on milk as a significant source of protein in their diet.

  • Added sugars: Some brands of oat milk contain added sugars to improve their taste, which can be a concern for those watching their sugar intake.

  • Gluten content: If you suffer from a gluten intolerance then oat milk is a no-no unless it is guaranteed gluten-free. Oat milk is made from oats, which are naturally gluten-free. However, some oat milk products may contain traces of gluten due to cross-contamination during processing.

  • Nutrient deficiencies: Oat milk is not a significant source of certain nutrients found in cow's milk, such as calcium and vitamin B12. Some oat milk products are fortified with these nutrients, but not all.

It's worth noting that not all oat milk products are created equal, and some may have fewer drawbacks than others.

Our Favorite Starbucks Oat Milk Beverages

Starbucks drinks that use oat milk

Any beverage at Starbucks can be ordered with oat milk as a substitute for dairy milk.  A few top Starbucks oat milk drinks stand out.

  1. Oatmilk shaken espressos: Definitely amongst the most popular Starbucks oatmilk drinks, oatmilk shaken espressos feature Blonde espresso coffee, oat milk, ice, and other ingredients which are shaken together with brown sugar or vanilla.

  2. Oat Milk Latte: This is a classic oat milk drink made with espresso and steamed oat milk.

  3. Iced Oat Milk Latte: Similar to the hot version but served over ice to create a refreshing drink beverage on a hot day. Have your barista add vanilla to create an oatmilk iced vanilla latte.

  4. Oat Milk Mocha: A mocha made with espresso, steamed creamy oat milk, and chocolate sauce. This is a lovely hot beverage for a cold day.

  5. Iced Oat Milk Mocha: Similar to the hot version, but served over ice.

  6. Oat Milk Honey Latte: A latte made with espresso, steamed oat milk, and honey syrup. This Starbucks drink is ideal if you have a sweet tooth. You can also opt to go with a Starbucks oat milk sweetened choice if you need the beverage even more sweet.

Related Read: 

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Starbucks offer oat milk?

Yes, Starbucks offers oat milk as a dairy-free milk alternative for their beverages. It is available in most Starbucks locations. Depending on your location, the coffee chain uses either Regular Oatly or Barista Edition Oatly oat milks.

Is Starbucks oat milk gluten-free?

Yes, the Starbucks oat milk is gluten-free.

Is Starbucks oat milk vegan?

Yes, Starbucks oat milk is vegan as it is made from plant-based ingredients and does not contain any kind of animal products.

How does Starbucks oat milk compare to other plant-based milks?

Starbucks oat milk has a creamy and slightly sweet taste, making it a popular choice for use in coffee and tea. It is also known for frothing well, creating a creamy foam for lattes and cappuccinos. Compared to other plant-based milk types, it has a similar nutritional profile and is a high source of fiber.

Does Starbucks charge extra for oat milk?

Yes, Starbucks charges extra for oat milk. The added cost is about $0.80 to $1.00 depending on your order.

Can Starbucks oat milk be used for baked goods and cooking recipes?

Yes, Starbucks oat milk can be used in place of traditional dairy milk in most recipes, including baking and cooking.

Is Starbucks oat milk sustainable?

Starbucks sources its oat milk from Oatly, a company that is famous worldwide for its sustainable and environmentally friendly practices. 

Can I ask for a different amount of oat milk in my Starbucks beverage?

Starbucks oat milk is not organic, but it is made from non-GMO oats and does not contain any artificial flavors or preservatives.

Is Starbucks oat milk available in all countries?

Starbucks oat milk is available in most countries where Starbucks has locations. Check with your local Starbucks to confirm they have oat milk available. 

Can I purchase Starbucks' Oatly oat milk in stores?

Yes, Starbucks' Oatly oat milk is available for purchase in select Starbucks stores or grocers. However, it is important to note that the availability may vary depending on your location.

To ensure availability, check with your local grocery stores or online retailers to see if they carry Starbucks' Oatly oat milk.

You can also purchase it online - check our link above!

Bottom Line

Okay, there is no doubt that oat milk is getting a lot of attention from coffee aficionados.

Why not see what all the hype is about?

Order a Starbucks oat milk beverage next time you are visiting the coffee house. See exactly how it stacks up to dairy and other plant-based milks in your brew.

You’ll probably fall in love with the superb flavor and texture.

Felipe is a tea expert with an engineering background! He loves to drink and learn all about tea and coffee. His love for tea was discovered while living in Japan and his favorites are Sencha & Pu'er!

This article is intended for informational purposes only. It is not meant to replace professional medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. Do not consume any type of coffee, tea or herbal infusion if you are allergic to it. The information in this article is not intended to treat serious medical conditions. Please seek professional medical advice before using home remedies.

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