Choose This Seasonal Drink to Save Over 100 Calories

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
11/24/2012 10:00 AM   :  43 comments   :  37,080 Views

Now that the Pumpkin Spice Latte craze has passed, Starbucks has rolled out a new set of hot drinks for the winter season. With enticing names like Gingerbread, Eggnog, Caramel Brulee, and Peppermint Mocha, these sweet sips sound like a fun way to kick off the holidays. But not so fast! If you're going to indulge, which one of these drinks should you choose to avoid extra pounds?
 
The Winner: Gingerbread Latte!

Although these lattes all sound equally festive and delicious, there is a slight difference when it comes to calories! Check out the nutritional information, from the Starbucks website. (All information is for a Grande (16 oz.) drink, made with 2% milk and whipped cream.)

Gingerbread Latte Eggnog Latte Caramel Brulee Latte Peppermint Mocha
320 calories 460 calories 430 calories 410 calories
13 grams fat 21 grams fat 13 grams fat 15 grams fat
8 grams saturated fat 12 grams saturated fat 7 grams saturated fat 9 grams saturated fat
37 grams sugar 48 grams sugar 52 grams sugar 53 grams sugar
 
The lower-cal Gingerbread Latte is made with steamed milk and gingerbread-flavored syrup. The other drinks are also made with syrups and steamed milk, but they pack in a few extra calorie punches with real egg nog, caramel brulee topping, and mocha sauce.

Of course, you can customize your drink and slash some of the fat by ordering it with skim milk and no whipped topping. However, the sugar count is still going to be extremely high for all of these drinks (even the Gingerbread Latte contains over 9 teaspoons of sugar!).

Order a Tall (12 oz.), or even a Short (8 oz.) to get a taste of your favorite seasonal flavors without breaking the calorie bank--or, if you want the real deal, indulge in a drink with all the fixings if you can squeeze a treat into your meal plan. The holidays only come once a year, so don't deprive yourself completely of all the seasonal sweets you love. Just remember that moderation is key--otherwise, you might be starting off the New Year looking a bit like Santa!

  


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Comments

  • 43
    It's amazing how the calories add up with these drinks! I don't remember the last time I had Starbucks. In the interest of disclosure, there's a local coffee stand in my building. However, I rarely stop in and then I can order a short size drink (5oz size) of a chai latte with skim milk and it's low in calories. Not a daily drink, but a couple times a year it's a nice treat. And I love that it's even smaller than a comparable Starbucks Tall size. - 11/29/2012   1:53:44 PM
  • ALEXREVERIE
    42
    I've heard that some people get flack from Starbucks baristas for ordering the "short" size when they're not children... They set you up to fail! Unless you get a sympathetic barista. :) - 11/29/2012   1:35:51 PM
  • 41
    I splurge and have a few caramel brûlée lattes throughout this season, but with nonfat milk, half the syrup, and no whip. These changes make a big difference and I enjoy the treat. :) - 11/28/2012   10:48:11 PM
  • 40
    Yep, have less syrup - I find 3 pumps in a grande is PLENTY. And it works well also to have a grande size of your fave brew off the tap at STarbucks and add the 3 pumps to the coffee (I like gingerbread), then your own milk or 1/2 & 1/2. Still great taste and almost half the price. And no whip! Sweet indulgence!! - 11/28/2012   4:28:36 PM
  • 39
    I hate coffee, even the smell of it. LOL - 11/27/2012   7:24:37 PM
  • 38
    Skinny peppermint mocha, skinny mocha, skinny caramel macchiato and skinny cinnamon dolce latte are my go-to Starbucks options. I do like the PSL and the creme brulee is pretty dang good, but I agree that they are too sweet. I like the option that someone mentioned about getting just one pump of the syrup - I bet that would taste much better! :-) - 11/26/2012   10:15:51 PM
  • AMBER461
    37
    Good for me we don't have starbucks where I live nor would I be indulging in any of these drinks because I do not use sugar. - 11/26/2012   7:32:05 PM
  • 36
    I LOVE DUNKIN DONUTS AND SOME WHAT STARBUCKS ,SINCE I STARTED MY DIET I STAY AWAY FROM DUNKIN DONUTS I JUST GO TO GET A SMALL COFFEE WITH CREAM. NOTHING ELSE BEFORE MY DIET I WAS HOOKED ON CARAMEL ICED LATTES. I CAREFULLY WATCH WHAT I EAT AND DRINK NOW.. - 11/26/2012   1:11:10 PM
  • 35
    Fortunately, for me, this is one set of drinks that literally sets my teeth on edge; I'm less a sugar-eater than a fat-fan, so I'll stick to straight coffee with 2% milk. - 11/26/2012   12:26:30 PM
  • 34
    Lol im guilty of being a starbucks addict. Lucky I dont live near one. All those calories and sugar is very depressing info for me... - 11/26/2012   10:59:26 AM
  • 33
    When I do indulge in a holiday drink then it is the Skinny Peppermint Mocha. I get my sweet fix and am able to easily fit it into my calories for the day. - 11/26/2012   9:54:32 AM
  • 32
    No thank you! 37 grams of sugar = 8.8 teaspoons!!! Way too much sugar. - 11/26/2012   9:18:17 AM
  • CAKEY012
    31
    When I want one of these drinks. I ask how many pumps of syrup they use. Most of them use 3. So I ask them to do just one pump and skim milk. I think it taste the same. - 11/26/2012   8:40:55 AM
  • 30
    I treat myself to a Starbucks now and then. I get a Skinny Mocha or a plain latte - decaf. I don't do it often. - 11/25/2012   10:06:54 PM
  • 29
    When I get a Starbucks coffee I usually get skinny peppermint mocha or skinny caramel macciato (which is fewer calories than the peppermint mocha). I did have problems with how many calories was in the caramel, though, because one of the stores gave the Tall amount as Grande. My problem with Starbucks is I like the Iced Chai Latte during the summer and they don't have that in Skinny. I don't drink coffee most of the time because, even though I like the smell of fresh brewed coffee, I don't like the taste unless it is flavored. - 11/25/2012   9:16:56 PM
  • BEAGLETALE
    28
    Like someone else mentioned, my wife also just this Thanksgiving weekend discovered the Skinny Peppermint Mocha (my free b´day drink from last August!) Last year I don´t believe there were any Skinny Holiday drinks. Delicious! MI am a pumpkin fanatic and we -- like some others listed, have found a SF pumpkin spice syrup recipe that we use in coffee. The next step is to learn to use an expresso maker (from a garage sale) and make other SF coffee drinks. - 11/25/2012   5:30:57 PM
  • NGREGOR
    27
    Glad I never got into the Starbucks or latte routine. From what I have heard about all of the fancy coffees not just Starbucks is they are very high in calories. I suspect anyone who thinks otherwise is just trying to justify they are just having a cup of coffee and not a dessert. - 11/25/2012   5:06:46 PM
  • 26
    Wow! I am glad I make my own! No wonder America has an epidemic of obesityand Diabetes. No drink should have that much sugar or calories. They need to ditch those syrupsand boost the flavor instead. - 11/25/2012   4:39:11 PM
  • 25
    Good Lord, They are all, awful. I can't imagine drinking any of them. I would certainly make my own. The sugar alone, would kill you. WOW!
    - 11/25/2012   3:31:51 PM
  • HASIMEONE
    24
    As a former Starbucks addict, I still think the drinks listed in this article are way too many calories. A tall skinny peppermint mocha has 100 calories and that is what I order if I happen to go to Starbucks. Sparkrecipes has a wonderful recipe for your own iced coffee using almond milk, coffee, splenda and low fat or sugar free chocolate syrup. It certainly has cured my starbucks craving. It tastes great and has a lot less calories. - 11/25/2012   11:59:58 AM
  • 23
    I agree the E, none of the above, is the correct answer. If people wonder why they are having trouble losing weight or even saving money...look no further than the purchased coffee drink phenomenon. at $ 3-6 per drink, and 300+ calories...with many people ordering one to five....yes FIVE a day...is it any wonder..... - 11/25/2012   11:17:50 AM
  • 22
    Wow, that's a meal for me! No thanks. I will take one of those McD sugar free fat free iced things once in a blue moon things or just skip it. Man, what is Starbucks doing to people!! It would be interesting to check out the daily diet of a Starbucks addict!

    rumbamel - 11/25/2012   10:50:49 AM
  • ANGHARAD3
    21
    Good info for this Starbucks addict. - 11/25/2012   10:22:58 AM
  • 20
    Personally, I don't like Starbucks anyway. If you order an actual coffee without all the junk, it tastes burnt. I love my coffee. I have a 6 oz cup every morning. We are a (very nearly) dairy free house so I use either almond, coconut or (rarely) soy milk. Yesterday I picked up some eggnog and mint chocolate flavored soy milk. Much better than all that yucky syrup! And cheaper too! - 11/25/2012   9:42:04 AM
  • PRUSSIANETTE
    19
    The calories listed are for 16 oz. (i.e. two cups, or a pint). Taking a short (8 oz) would still give you a fix at half the calories. Sometimes it is better to take this route instead of avoid completely and then start binging on other stuff to satisfy that craving or to compensate because you feel you are being "punished". - 11/25/2012   8:44:05 AM
  • LBGONE
    18
    Starbucks has a Skinny Peppermint Mocha at most locations now. It uses non-fat milk and sugar free mocha and peppermint. At 130 cal for a 16 oz drink with only 1.5 g fat (1 saturated) and 13 g sugar (from the milk), it is a way better choice than the gingerbread latte. There are far worse holiday splurges for sure and this has kept me from many a holiday sweets binge! - 11/25/2012   6:55:16 AM
  • SHANNONY84
    17
    People often forget that drinks can also pack on the pounds. Especially the tasty ones that Dunkin and Starbucks run you in with! - 11/25/2012   5:43:34 AM
  • 16
    So glad I am not addicted to starbucks or those nasty drinks! - 11/25/2012   2:06:45 AM
  • 15
    Yummmm!
    A Gingerbread Latte from Starbuck's and I'll enjoy One.
    Ready in my Favorites list... to log in the Nutrition Tracker.

    - 11/25/2012   12:59:06 AM
  • 14
    wow way too many calories not for me and I gave up dairy since getting breast cancer instead of doing chemo......... well I have found making my own half Columbian , half dark and I add vanilla soya milk for 60 calories or less it is a wonderful special coffee and when I run out of that I use chocolate almond.... milk at 50 claories for less than half a cup added.. doing that now with decaf... that works too - 11/24/2012   11:26:05 PM
  • 13
    Yes it is very nice to have a special cup of coffee. My daughther she live in
    toronto and every christmass she buy me special coffee ,but it is at Second cup
    coffee it is really good. - 11/24/2012   10:46:24 PM
  • 12
    I guess I am not sad that I really don't care for starbucks!! I will however have a coffee at tim horton's the same way I do the rest of the year- I might just buy some egg nog though. - 11/24/2012   10:44:41 PM
  • 11
    My holiday drink is Joy tea from Tazo tea, available at starbucks during the holidays. this way I can get a special holiday drink treat without blowing my calorie range. - 11/24/2012   8:36:10 PM
  • 10
    I would pick 1 for the season and not worry about it. - 11/24/2012   8:12:56 PM
  • JOYFULROAD
    9
    One smart way to go is to get an iced or hot coffee with one or two pumps of the syrup in it, that way you get the taste without the excessive calories. Most Starbucks syrups have about 30 calories a pump - tall = 3 pumps, Grande = 4 pumps, Venti = 5 pumps, trenta= 7 pumps, so you can rack up a lot of calories quickly if you don't order smartly.
    Or you ask for less pumps in any drink - which helps :)
    - 11/24/2012   6:38:20 PM
  • 8
    Holy cow! I'm glad I don't drink coffee. Even the winner is a full meals worth of calories for me. - 11/24/2012   5:59:35 PM
  • 7
    The correct answer is E) None of the above. Even at 320 calories a Gingerbread latte is half a meal of calories, and I'm a big guy. I can't imagine what it would do for some lower calorie diets. - 11/24/2012   3:15:37 PM
  • 6
    The correct answer is E) None of the above. Even at 320 calories a Gingerbread latte is half a meal of calories, and I'm a big guy. I can't imagine what it would do for some lower calorie diets. - 11/24/2012   3:15:37 PM
  • 5
    The correct answer is E) None of the above. Even at 320 calories a Gingerbread latte is half a meal of calories, and I'm a big guy. I can't imagine what it would do for some lower calorie diets. - 11/24/2012   3:15:32 PM
  • 4
    Even though I love the smell of fresh brewed coffee, I only drink it once in a while. Although, the comments about adding vanilla extract or pumpkin spice sounds so good, I just might have to give them a try. - 11/24/2012   1:08:28 PM
  • 3
    I treated myself to some sugar-free pumpkin syrup and some sugar-free eggnog syrup this year to try to make my own lower-calorie versions. Almond milk with some coffee and syrup is good!
    - 11/24/2012   1:01:42 PM
  • 2
    I choose to brew my own coffee at home. You can add a touch of vanilla extract to the coffee grounds for a nice calorie free taste. I also enjoy adding pumpkin spice blend to my grounds. Brews a wonderful treat for 0 extra calories. Then I can finish with skim milk and a calorie free sweetener. - 11/24/2012   12:18:30 PM
  • TIENDAKARMA
    1
    And that's why I make my own lattes!!! Maybe someday I'll share my recipes. I used to be a manager @ Borders and learned a couple of tricks. - 11/24/2012   11:51:24 AM

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