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Starbucks “Secret Menu” Drinks to Help You Get Through Finals Week

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Northwestern chapter.

   Whether you are in the midst of your midterms or finals, one thing is for sure—the grind never stops for college students. My friends and I joke around about having caffeine run through our veins based on the number of times we take the long walk from North Campus to Starbucks every week. Coffee could even be considered an essential for the survival of many people who depend on it to get through their day. I spent the week surveying my most Starbucks-addicted friends to see what “secret menu” drink they would recommend, and let me tell you, they did not disappoint. I was given drink suggestions from all over the board, so whether you are looking for the most concentrated coffee or the sweetest tea, here is a list of my now go-to Starbucks secret menu drinks to get me, and hopefully you, through your finals week.

Brown sugar oat milk shaken espresso

What to order: An iced brown sugar oat milk shaken espresso

As oat milk is an exciting new addition to the Starbucks milks, it is no surprise that this drink tops the list. Everyone is raving about this drink, calling it a lighter sort-of coffee drink that is not too milky. As far as coffee goes, my friend Preeta said that it is definitely one of the more refreshing ones, and that it is not too sweet either. Try this drink to get your daily dose of caffeine.

“TikTok” white chocolate mocha drink

What to order: An iced white mocha with caramel drizzle and sweet cream cold foam

This drink has been circulating Tik Tok for a while now, and so of course it made it onto the list. White chocolate lovers are sure to enjoy this creamy iced drink. If you have a sweet tooth that you cannot seem to satisfy, this is the drink for you.

Strawberry lemonade

What to order: A strawberry acai refresher with 2 shots of lemonade

If you are getting ready to head on spring break, this drink is the perfect one to carry with you to the beach. A mix of the classic strawberry acai refresher and a splash of lemonade, this berry-flavored drink is sure to hit the spot on a hot and sunny day.

Ilise’s secret smoothie drink

What to order: A mango dragon fruit refresher with green tea instead of water, double blended

This I called “Ilise’s Secret Smoothie” because my friend Ilise came up with this genius combination, and if you are looking for a smoothie-type drink, this is a great one to try. Fruity and refreshing, this drink reminds Ilise of warm summer days.

Dirty vanilla chai

What to order: An iced chai latte with 1 to 2 shots of espresso with 2 pumps of vanilla

I, myself, am a big fan of chai tea, so when I heard about this little twist on the classic latte, I knew I had to try it. With the warmth and spice of comforting chai tea coupled with a bit of coffee and hint of vanilla, this drink is sure to satisfy. I would definitely get this drink again.

Cookie butter latte

What to order: An iced chai latte with brown sugar syrup and oat milk

I am actually sitting here drinking this as we speak, and let me tell you, it is absolutely delicious. It tastes exactly like the Trader Joes cookie butter—the oat milk is also a great way to enjoy this drink for those who cannot have dairy. The flavors mix perfectly and create a drink that tastes exactly like my favorite Trader Joes delicacy.

Whether you try one of these new drinks, or stick to your signature, hopefully your Starbucks drink-of-choice will serve you well as you tackle your finals. Good luck and happy studying!

Kate Davis

Northwestern '24

Kate is a Sophomore at Northwestern University studying Communications and Sociology. Her favorite things to do in her free time are being with her friends, listening to new playlists, making TikToks, and online shopping. When she is not writing for HC, you can find her trying out new study spots around campus or hanging out with her sorority sisters