Is Your Coffee Giving You A Muffin Top?


Are the calories in your favorite coffee the equivalent of the calories in a muffin – or your lunch — for that matter?

Calories and nutritional information for some Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts hot coffee drinks:

Calories and nutritional information for some iced and frozen coffee drinks:

Note: all info (with the exception of Burger King) is for a 16 ounce cup.

  • Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino with whipped cream, 16 ounces (grande): 400 calories, 15 g fat (9 g saturated), 64g carbohydrates.
  • Starbucks Mocha Light Frappuccino with nonfat milk, 16 ounces (grande): 130 calories, 0.5g fat, (0 g saturated), 28g carbohydrates.
  • Iced Caffe Latte with nonfat milk, 16 ounces (grande):  90 calories, 0g fat, 13g carbohydrates.
  • Dunkin’ Donuts Coffee Coolata made with whole milk, 16 ounces (small):  240 calories, 4 g fat (2.5 g saturated), 50g carbohydrates
  • Dunkin’ Donuts Vanilla Bean Coolatta, 16 ounces (small): 420 calories, 6g fat (3.5g saturated), 92g carbohydrates
  • Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Caramel Mocha Latte with milk, (large):       450 calories, 12g fat (7g saturated), 73g carbohydrates
  • Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Latte made with skim milk, 16 ounces (small):  80 calories, 0g fat, 13g carbohydrates
  • Baskin Robbins Cappuccino Blast Mocha, 16ounces (small):  400 calories, 13g fat (9g saturated), 65g carbohydrates
  • McDonald’s McCafé Iced Caramel Mocha, 16 ounces (medium) made with whole milk and whipped cream:  300 calories, 14g fat (8g saturated), 36g carbohydrates
  • Burger King: Iced Seattle’s Best Coffee Mocha, 22 ounces (medium):  260 calories, 3.5g fat (2.5g saturated), 54g carbohydrates

Wow—It Can Add Up

  • Say you have three grande (Starbucks)—or large (Dunkin’ Donuts)—coffees a day. Each is 20 ounces or 2.5 times the size of a traditional 8 ounce cup.
  • If you add 4 tablespoons of half and half and three teaspoons of sugar to each—which sounds like a lot but is very east to do—that’s 128 calories for what you add and around 5 calories for the coffee for a total of 133 calories for each grande/large cup of coffee.
  • If you have three of those daily that’s 399 calories a day or the equivalent of 145,635 calories a year.

What about the calories in some plain coffee or tea?

Hot or cold, you can have plain black coffee for a bargain basement 5 calories.  The trick is controlling the extras to avoid making your coffee just another sneaky calorie bomb.

  • Brewed coffee, grande (16 oz), black:  5 calories
  • Heavy cream, 1tbs:  52 calories
  • Half-and-half, 1 tbs:  20 calories
  • Whole milk, 1 tbs:  9 calories
  • Fat-free milk. 5 calories
  • Table sugar, 1tbs:  49 calories

Have your coffee and save some calories, too:

  • Ditch the whipped cream.
  • Swap half and half, full fat, or 2% milk for 1% or skim.
  • Watch the sugar:  ask for one pump instead of two of sugar free syrup, add non-calorie sweetener instead of sugar, or don’t sweeten at all.
  • Change the size of the drink that you order:  instead of a venti or an extra large, order a grande or large – or drop down to a tall, medium, or even a small-sized drink.
  • If you have a two a day (or more) habit – like a latte in the morning and a frappuccino in the afternoon – substitute a plain coffee or iced tea (easy on the milk and sugar), or even a latte with nonfat milk for one of those choices.
  • Order plain hot or iced coffee or even a hot or iced Americano (almost no calories for 16 ounces) and doctor it with non-caloric sweetener and skim milk.  You’d even come out ahead if you use controlled amounts of sugar and a bit of half and half. Or have an hot or iced brewed coffee with classic syrup:  a 12 ounce cup has 60 calories.

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