My Go-To Low Carb Iced Starbucks Drinks

No matter where you are, there is probably a Starbucks nearby (thank god). Which is great because they have a plethora of drink options and readily available nutrition facts for everything on the menu. This makes a type 1 diabetic’s life incredibly easier when trying to keep our blood sugar in check. Having it be so easy for me to lose track of carbohydrates when I drink them, mixed with being a below average carb counter, I naturally end up sipping on something that won’t require a huge spike in my numbers.

As an avid diabetic Starbucks drinker for many years, I have narrowed down a list for my go-to iced drinks that won’t (completely) ruin your blood sugar.

Just a few notes – All options below are ordered as a Venti (but use your personal preference on stevias and pumps, etc. I am clearly a stevia lady, but if you prefer unsweetened, go without). All nutrition facts were pulled directly from the Starbucks website. (For a Venti, Starbucks says their almond milk is 2g of carbohydrates, and their coconut milk is 3g. Additionally, I calculated matcha and chai grams by working backward from the total number of carbohydrates, subtracting the milk grams, and dividing by the 6 pumps/shots for a Vente, and multiplying by 2) (I also realize there’s an easier way to go about that calculation but gimme a break ok being diabetic is hard enough)

My Free Option: Iced Tea

I LOVE a good iced tea. There’s nothing like a subtle pick-me-up on a hot day like an unsweetened iced tea. You know what’s great about unsweetened iced tea? There are no carbohydrates in it!

  • Iced Unsweetened Green Tea
  • Light Water (Starbucks adds water to their ice teas to dilute it. Asking for light water makes the tea stronger)
  • 2 Stevias (Optional)
  • Splash of Passion Tea – literally just a splash
  • Total: 0g of Carbohydrates

My Usual: Iced Coffee

Everyone needs a staple drink. A go-to. A drink your friend can memorize for those days she wants to grab you coffee before work. This is mine:

  • Iced Coffee (Or cold brew – I am just cheap and would rather pay less)
  • Almond Milk
  • 2 Stevias (Optional)
  • Total: 2g of Carbohydrates

My Thrifty Choice: Matcha

My friend introduced me to this drink and I fell in love. It is an updated version of the popular matcha latte, but a little less heavy so that you don’t ever have to second guess if milk was a bad choice.

  • Unsweetened white tea
  • 2 scoops of matcha (normally a vente would have 6, but in reality why does anyone need that much matcha? Also, carbs.)
  • Splash of coconut milk
  • 2 Stevias
  • Total: 12g of Carbohydrates

My Splurge: Dirty Chai

When I am feeling saucy, perfect blood sugars all day, winning left and right, earned my free drink reward at Starbucks so I don’t have to pay $6 for a drink….. I am getting a dirty chai. Just take your insulin 15 minutes prior to drinking and you’ll be fine.

  • Chai Latte
  • 2 pumps of Chai (regular is 6 pumps)
  • Almond milk
  • 2 shots of espresso (or leave out the espresso for a regular chai)
  • Cinnamon on top (regulates blood sugar – heyyy)
  • Total: 20g of Carbohydrates

All of my options are completely customizable and just a few of my personal favorites. If you have a low-carb Starbucks go-to drink, please let me know! I am always growing my list of ‘no-insulin required’ options and would love to hear about how you hack the system at your local coffee shop.

– Ariana

Leave a Reply


  1. 9.7.18
    Jen said:

    Iced grande americano w/2 pumps SF vanilla syrup & a splash of heavy whipping cream…sometimes I just say w/heavy wc as opposed to a “splash”…just changes the flavor & creaminess. It’s basically a cheaper, lower carb sf vanilla late 👍🏼

  2. 10.21.18
    katie said:

    iced passion tango lemonade unsweetened- for a tall i think it’s like 16 carbs

  3. 9.2.20
    Kristin Elwood said:

    Venti cold brew, 1 stevia, 3 sugar free vanilla, splash of heavy cream! Soooo good!

  4. 12.1.20
    Alyssa said:

    As a diabetic I was drinking venti iced pasion tango teas until I went to check the nutrition facts and found out that even unsweetened it contains 16 grams of sugar for the venti which makes no sense I did contact Starbucks and I am awaiting their answer. I don’t drink coffee so I have to find alternatives

    • 12.1.20

      Hi Alyssa, Yes the tango part of the tea has sugar I believe (they add that in). A venti passion tea (no tango) unsweetened will have 0 carbohydrates! From there I add stevia. Always make sure to let them know you can’t have the added sugar! You can also make an unsweetened green or black tea as well.