Pregnant women give up so much for the health and well being of their unborn child with restrictions on what they can do and what they can eat and drink. As well as sharing their bodies for those 9 months – it’s tough!
So if we have to give up all these things does it also mean we have to give up our daily cup of coffee? Many women continue with their daily coffee habit, while others stop immediately, but which choice is correct?
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Experts are divided as there is no conclusive evidence either way but they do often offer alternatives to your usual coffee hit that are available at most of the larger chains.
To take all the hard work out of having to scour the internet to find out which drink is safe and which should be avoided while you are pregnant when you clearly have other important things to worry about, we have done the work for you.
Check out our list of Starbucks drinks that are safe to consume while pregnant, and we even popped in some alternatives if you want to avoid caffeine.
In this article
- Here Are Ones You Can Order If You’re Pregnant but want a Starbucks
- What About Other Big Chains
- The Final Thought
Here Are Ones You Can Order If You’re Pregnant but want a Starbucks
1. Iced Coffee
Starbucks only brew one type of iced coffee and its caffeine content is between 120 and 165 mg per cup, depending of course on which size you order. A tall or grande cup will be fine but stay away from the venti size as it contains 235 mg of caffeine.
2. Freshly Brewed Hot Coffee
At Starbucks, you can find three levels of brewed hot coffee. These are as follows Blonde (light roast), Pike place (medium roast), and Dark roast. I can feel you getting your happy dance on but hold fire…
If you want to stay within your 200 mg of caffeine you can only opt for the short cup which contains around 180 mg of caffeine. All the other sizes will throw you straight over the caffeine limit!
But if you do fancy a larger cup then you could opt for a decaf Pike Place – a venti is only 30 mg of caffeine!
3. Reserve Cold Brewed Coffee
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This cold-brewed coffee is going to be very similar to iced coffee. A grande contains 200mg of caffeine which is just hitting your limit for the day.
But anything bigger than this is going to push you over your caffeine limit. Cold Brew coffee and some of the flavored options are going to be over 200 mg of caffeine per day.
But only marginally cold brew is 205 mg for a grande, cold brew with cinnamon Almond milk foam is 205 mg for a grande size and cold brew with dark cocoa Almond milk foam is 210 mg for a grande size.
4. Capuccino Coffee
Although Capuccino is made with brewed espresso it is still below the caffeine limit of 200 mg. In fact, a grande cappuccino with 2% milk, regular foam, and steamed is just 150 mg of caffeine.
If you fancy a huge cup of coffee, you could even go for the Venti and it is still only 150 mg.
Now if you are looking for a quick caffeine hit then espresso is the way to go a Doppio size with 2 espresso shots is just 150 mg of caffeine.
This is the blend that is the base for most of their other coffees. But you definitely need to steer clear of the triple or quad shot of espresso as both are going to push you over the 200 mg.
6. Flat White or Almond Milk Honey
A flat white is made up of 2 ristretto shots and steamed whole milk. A size tall will give you around 130 mg of caffeine.
It’s well below the recommended daily allowance and will even leave you with some wiggle room to enjoy a few pieces of your favorite chocolate at the end of the day.
You do also have the option of opting for a larger serving as the tall contains only 195 mg of caffeine but you would have to forego the chocolate then – I know such a tough choice!!
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If a Latte is your coffee of choice then you are already on to a winner as all the flavors on the Starbucks current menu are well below the 200 mg.
They range from a Caramel Brulee Latte at just 150 mg for a grande to a Starbucks blonde Vanilla Late at only 170 mg for a grande, both of which leave you with a little in reserve for something else you may fancy.
Lattes are available in a range of flavors from the standard Caffe Latte to Eggnog Latte or even Cinnamon Dolce Latte and everything in between all of which are below the recommended daily intake and in a size grande.
If you are really needing a larger portion then you can safely opt for the venti which is still only 170 mg of caffeine.
The only one you need to avoid in the venti size is the Starbucks Reserve Latte which has 265 mg of caffeine in this size but you are safe to choose this particular one in a smaller size.
This is another great choice and even the venti size is still within the recommended daily allowance of caffeine. The only one that you really need to be wary of is the Espresso Macchiato is anything larger than a doppio.
If you fancy something a little bit naughtier then a mocha may be the one you are looking for, available in a range of flavors and all under the 200 mg, even for the venti size.
Some of them don’t leave you any room for other caffeine treats such as chocolate but after a venti size mocha, you probably have satisfied your craving for something sweet.
10. Frappuccino (Variety of flavors)
A great choice if you crave the caffeine but are looking for a cold drink. The frappuccino is available in a range of flavors from caramel brulee, chestnut praline, peppermint white chocolate mocha, and a host of other options.
Although these are well below the daily recommended intake of 200 mg of caffeine you would need to take note of the calories per drink as most are over 500 calories for a venti size frappuccino and contain around 16g of fat.
So although a good option with regard to caffeine intake maybe not such a good option for calorie and fat intake.
11. Iced Coconut Milk Drinks
If coffee is not your drink of choice but you are at a Starbucks you could always opt for a cool, refreshing iced coconut milk that is available in guava passionfruit, pineapple matcha, and golden ginger.
The pineapple matcha is the only one that contains caffeine as its primary ingredient is green tea. But you can still enjoy it in a venti size and not have anything to worry about.
12. Starbucks Refreshers
The Starbucks refresher is available in a range of flavors such as kiwi starfruit, dragon drink, mango dragonfruit, pink drink, and many others.
All can be enjoyed in the biggest trente size which is sure to quench your thirst when your pregnant even if it will increase the frequency of your toilet trips!
One flavor that you should be aware of and avoid is anything that has hibiscus in as this ingredient can be dangerous while pregnant.
13. Hot Tea
If you are not a coffee fan or have gone off it since being pregnant then tea is always a really good alternative and there is a good variety available at Starbucks.
The only one that you do need to limit is anything that contains green tea, and these should be limited to one cup a day. Other than that there is a range of flavors that are all safe to drink in venti size and still have little or no calories.
What About Other Big Chains
Starbucks has a huge range of drinks available in a variety of different sizes but what do some of the other big-name chains have to offer.
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One of the easiest ways to stay under the recommended daily intake of caffeine but still enjoy your cup of coffee is to downsize. At Dunkin’ Donuts the small original blend and dark roast coffees are both under the 200 mg daily caffeine intake.
Here are a few other drinks that are safe for pregnant women:
- An espresso has 75mg of caffeine per shot. You could have the shot on its own or you could enjoy a latte or cappuccino. The small and medium sizes are the best to stick to.
- Dunkaccino is another good option and you can enjoy any size from small to extra large.
Simply downsizing your morning coffee to a small one isn’t going to do it here. A small cup of Caribou coffee contains 230 mg of caffeine.
A better choice would be to go for one of the espresso drinks such as the White Berry Mocha or Turtle Mocha as most of these are under 200 mg.
How much caffeine can a pregnant woman have?
There is a great deal of conflicting evidence when it comes to how much caffeine a pregnant woman should consume.
The March of Dimes states that until move conclusive results are available. It is recommended that pregnant women should limit their caffeine intake to less than 200mg per day. This is the equivalent of around one 12 oz cup of coffee.
Can I drink hot chocolate while pregnant?
While you are pregnant you need to limit your caffeine intake to 200mg per day. Drinks such as coffee, tea, colas, hot chocolate, and cocoa all contain caffeine so should be consumed with caution.
These drinks should also not be replacing a pregnant woman’s daily intake of water.
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How many shots of espresso can I have while pregnant?
The current guidance for pregnant women is that they should limit their caffeine intake to 200 mg per day. The average espresso shot contains 212 mg so it would not be recommended that you consume any espresso shots while pregnant.
Can I drink hibiscus while pregnant?
Hibiscus is an edible flower and if consumed while pregnant increases your risk of several complications during pregnancy. Hibiscus can cause your uterus to contract which can result in miscarriage.
Is Lemongrass safe during pregnancy?
Lemongrass tea consumed in small amounts during pregnancy is considered safe. But lemongrass is also used as a seasoning in Thai dishes and these should be avoided while pregnant.
You should be aware that lemongrass can cause allergic reactions in some people.
The Final Thought
When you are pregnant it often feels like you have to give up everything that you enjoy but coffee isn’t one of them.
You may have to alter the size or your choice of caffeinated beverage but for the most part, you can still enjoy a coffee at your favorite big-name chain.