Do Starbucks Refreshers Have Caffeine? See Exactly How Much!

Starbucks introduced its Refreshers selection of drinks back in 2012, and even though they have been on the menu for more than a decade at this point, they have still managed to remain one of the most popular beverages that people will buy.

As their title suggests, these drinks are designed to be as uplifting, appetizing, and refreshing as possible and are essentially iced juice drinks that incorporate certain fruity ingredients to alter the taste slightly, making each one incredibly unique in its own way.

Do Starbucks Refreshers Have Caffeine? See Exactly How Much!

However, while the Refresher selection may be very well known by this point, a common question that many people still ask is whether these fruity delights actually contain any caffeine.

Keep reading as we answer this question and take a closer look at what exactly is infused with these drinks to make them so delicious to sip on.

Is It True That Starbucks Refreshers Contain Caffeine?

Starbucks has often promoted Starbucks Refreshers as being a tasty alternative to regular coffee, and while this is certainly true in the taste which is far more vibrant than anything you would get with any kind of brew, this doesn’t mean that all traces of caffeine are gone entirely.

Each of the nine Refreshers contains at least a little bit of caffeine, and they all possess the same amount as one another. With that being said though, this amount will change depending on the size of the cup you buy.

Here are the exact caffeine measurements that apply to each Refresher size:

  • Tall – 35mg
  • Grande – 45mg
  • Venti – 70mg
  • Trenta – 90mg

Keep in mind that this isn’t anywhere near as much as many of Starbucks’ other products such as their iced coffee for example, which contains three times the amount of caffeine as a grande-sized Refresher, with it being just enough to add a slight kick to the overall flavor.

Therefore, while the light and breezy taste of the fruit mixed in with the drink is sure to wake you up in the morning and get you prepared for the day ahead, a part of the energy boost is also thanks to the light amount of caffeine-infused within Refreshers.

How Much Caffeine Is A Healthy Amount?

400mg of caffeine a day is usually seen as the limit for most healthy adults, however, going over this limit can quickly lead to some unpleasant side effects such as nausea, headaches, and frequent urination.

Therefore, you don’t need to worry about a Refresher stretching you over the caffeine limit for the day.

To put this into perspective, a regular 8-ounce cup of coffee contains roughly 100mg of caffeine, which gives you an idea of how much more is packed into your regular brew compared to a Refresher.

Do Starbucks Refreshers Taste Like Coffee?

You wouldn’t be able to guess that Refreshers contained any amount of caffeine simply from tasting them because their flavor contains virtually no hints of coffee at all, and this is primarily due to how well it is masked by the other ingredients.

The natural fruit juice and extra added fruit flavoring are so potent already that they easily wash over the much smaller amount of caffeine, making this taste a lot more like an iced fruit-flavored beverage as opposed to anything even remotely similar to coffee.

Do Starbucks Refreshers Contain Any Sugar?

In order to help the fruity flavor of each Refresher pop out, and to add a light bubbly sensation to the taste and texture, these drinks do also contain a little bit of sugar, though the exact amount does differ between each of them.

Here is how much sugar is added to each Refresher if you were to buy them in a grande-size cup:

  • Mango Dragonfruit – 19g
  • Mango Dragonfruit Lemonade -31g
  • Dragon Drink – 23g
  • Paradise Drink – 23g
  • Strawberry Açaí – 21g
  • Strawberry Açaí Lemonade – 32g
  • Pineapple Passionfruit – 19g
  • Pineapple Passionfruit Lemonade – 30g
  • Pink Drink – 25g
  • Cool Lime – 13g

In comparison to the caffeine content which is actually pretty low, all types of Refreshers do contain a moderate amount of sugar that is worth knowing about, especially if you’re someone trying to cut down on your daily sugar intake.

Do Starbucks Refreshers Have Caffeine? See Exactly How Much!

Alternatives To Starbucks Refreshers

If you’re looking at all of this nutritional information and are a little worried that you may not be able to go back to sipping on some fruity Refreshers because of a diet plan, don’t worry, there are plenty of alternatives that are a lot healthier, and that also taste very similar to the real thing.

Here are just a handful of fantastic alternatives that you should consider trying out for yourself.

Teavana Shaken Iced Passion Tango Tea

With no calories, sugar, or fat included in this tasty tea, it’s an incredibly nutritious menu option that manages to taste extremely similar to a Refresher, specifically the Dragon Drink and Paradise Drink.

This drink contains the perfect blend of lemongrass, hibiscus, and apple which all combine to create a fruity flavor that will help keep you energized and refreshed without needing all the extra sugar or caffeine.

Skinny Vanilla Latte

If you enjoy the slightly creamier texture found in the Strawberry Açai or the Mango Dragonfruit, the closest alternative is definitely a skinny vanilla latte.

Despite being around for so many years, this smooth and sweet beverage is still immensely popular, and to make it skinny, all you need to do is substitute the vanilla syrup and steamed milk for non-fat milk and sugar-free syrup, it really is that easy!

Lemon Iced Tea

There aren’t many Starbucks drinks that will replicate the intensely vibrant and breezy fruit flavor of a Refresher quite as well as a classic lemon iced tea.

This citrusy thirst-quencher only contains 12g of sugar, which is a lot lower than a regular cup of a Refresher, and it also cuts out the caffeine entirely, making this a far more nutritious option that is still guaranteed to keep you cool on a warm summer’s day.


So, while there are plenty of people still wondering whether that energy boost that you get from a Refresher is due to a hint of caffeine or not, the truth is that this selection of drinks does indeed contain some caffeine.

However, they still have far less than most of Starbucks’ other products, and in the grand scheme of things, the amount isn’t even higher than your standard cup of coffee.

With that in mind though, if you would prefer a drink that tones down the caffeine and sugar just a little bit but that still has that distinguishable fruity taste of a Refresher, there are luckily plenty of alternative drinks that you can pick from.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Starbucks Drink Contains The Most Caffeine?

The most caffeinated drink currently available on the Starbucks menu is the Blonde Roast Brewed Coffee which is packed with 360 mg of caffeine.

Right behind that is the Pike Place Roast Brewed Coffee which contains 310mg.

What Was The First Refresher Introduced?

The very first Refresher that made an appearance on Starbucks menus back in 2012 was the Cool Lime Refresher. 

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