What Matcha Does Starbucks Use?

What Matcha Does Starbucks Use

You’ve likely heard of Matcha tea powder. It’s the latest trend in health drinks. However, most places that sell the beverage don’t know about it or do not offer high-quality tea.

And even more troubling, some of the most popular cafes serving Matcha don’t even offer 100% authentic Japanese green tea Matcha

One of the most notorious offenders is Starbucks.

What Matcha do they use at Starbucks employ?

As I mentioned, it’s not strictly entirely Japanese Matcha tea powder. It’s pure sugar!

This article will dive into the details of what Matcha does Starbucks use, the other things you should be aware of about authentic Matcha, and why you should drink Matcha! 

Get a cup, and let’s start drinking.


  1. What Matcha Does Starbucks Use?
  2. What Brand Of Matcha Tea Does Starbucks Use?
  3. What Determines Matcha Quality?
  4. Does Starbucks Have Unsweetened Matcha?
  5. Is Starbucks Matcha Healthy?
  6. Does Starbucks Matcha Taste Good?

What Matcha Does Starbucks Use?

Starbucks is a great place to buy matcha drinks on the market. The majority of these are dairy-based, with one of the most popular is the matcha lattes that are the most classic. 

If you’re in the market for something refreshing, the Matcha green tea Latte is a great choice since it is available cold or hot to complement your preferences. The company also sells non-dairy matcha drinks for vegan customers.

The Matcha green tea sold at Starbucks is known as Aiya, which comes from Japan. However, it is manufactured in China. It is not a pure Matcha but rather a mix.

It contains Matcha tea powder and sugar. More than half of the mix is sugar.

A few of the most loved matcha drinks offered at Starbucks can be those that include the Matcha Tea Latte, the Iced Matcha Tea Latte, and the traditional Matcha Creme Frappuccino. Starbucks also offers Matcha drinks based on fruits, like those called Matcha Lemonade, the Pineapple Matcha Drink, and many more.

What Brand Of Matcha Tea Does Starbucks Use?

Starbucks doesn’t reveal the powder they use to make matcha. However, green tea experts can guess where it came from based on the flavor.

Starbucks matcha is made from the Japanese brand known as Aiya and is produced in China. While Aiya is a highly regarded Japanese business, it’s not the best quality matcha.

The fact is, Starbucks does process its matcha tea more thoroughly before blending the tea with sugar to make the Starbucks Matcha blend. 

It is believed that Starbucks will add sugar to matcha powder to reduce the bitter taste.

What Determines Matcha Quality?

Matcha tea holds a huge significance for ceremonies in Japan and worldwide due to its health advantages.

The matcha tea must be of good quality for health and ceremonial reasons. The most crucial element in determining the quality of matcha is the method of growing it.

Organically certified matcha that is produced without the use of chemical pesticides will be the highest quality.

Additionally, matcha green tea grown within the Wazuka region of Japan is of excellent quality due to the water and air. The absence of growth in industrial production within the Wazuka region ensures that the water, air, and soil have largely escaped pollution from industrial sources.

A good quality Matcha tea powder must possess an attractive green color and a fresh aroma. The taste should be rich, earthy, and lightly sweet. It is known as umami in Japanese by the name of umami.

Matcha tea isn’t supposed to appear dull or yellowish-colored. However, it is possible to make matcha tea appear bright green color by the use of fertilizers when making the tea.

Does Starbucks Have Unsweetened Matcha?

Starbucks does not have unsweetened Matcha. This is due to the main ingredient in it – sugar. 

Some may find this unhealthy, but it shouldn’t be an issue if you require a healthy energy boost. To reduce the amount of sugar, you can purchase it without any sweeteners. Here’s an exact quantity of sugar used in each cup of Matcha drink.

Matcha Tea Latte14g (1 scoop of Matcha tea blend)24g (2 scoops of Matcha tea blend)32g (3 scoops of Matcha tea blend)43g (4 scoops of Matcha tea blend)
Iced Matcha Tea Latte20g (2 scoops of Matcha tea blend)28g (3 scoops of Matcha tea blend)39g (4 scoops of Matcha tea blend)
Sugar Quantity in Starbucks Matcha Drinks

Is Starbucks Matcha Healthy?

The Matcha powder that Starbucks use contains sugar. As it is impossible to get a sugar-free Matcha green tea at Starbucks, the Starbucks Matcha is not healthy

It cannot be compared to traditional (ceremonial) Matcha that is normally used at tea ceremonies. Of course, there are many health benefits associated with Matcha. However, I believe that if you drink a Matcha at Starbucks, you do not primarily do it because you want a healthy drink. You may do it as it gives you a good feeling and as you like the taste!

If you want to make this drink healthier, you can alter it a little bit.

How to make Starbucks Matcha Healthier?

Change the Milk

As a default option, the milk in the Matcha Latte is 2%. 

You can change with the following healthier options:

  • Nonfat Milk
  • Almond Milk
  • Coconut Milk
  • Oatmilk
  • Soy Milk

Do not ask for Syrups

If you ask the barista to put you a syrup, you will increase the sugar and calories of the drink.

Vanilla Syrup 5 g (1 pump, 0.5oz)
Mocha Syrup 4 g (1 pump, 0.5oz)
Caramel Flavored Syrup 10.5 g (1 tbsp, 0.5oz)
Classic Syrup 5 g (1 pump, 0.5oz)
Toffee Nut Syrup 8 g (1 tbsp, 0.5oz)
Hazelnut Syrup2.5 g (1 tbsp, 0.5oz)
Peppermint Syrup 8.5 g (1 tbsp, 0.5oz)

Does Starbucks Matcha Taste Good?

It is more than just delicious. It also looks nice. With this being the case, it’s dependent on the way you choose to order it. Since the powder is in a sugar-based mix by default, it gives a honey-like aftertaste that makes it sweet but not boring. There are many options for buying it. Many people prefer adding syrup to make it more sweetened. If that’s the case, you can ask for the following syrups:

  • Vanilla Syrup
  • Brown sugar syrup
  • Caramel Syrup
  • Hazelnut Syrup
  • Raspberry Syrup
  • Peppermint Syrup
  • Toffee Nut Syrup
  • Toasted Vanilla Syrup

Final thoughts

Although Starbucks does not disclose the source or brand of their Matcha Powder, experts believe it comes from a well-known Japanese firm and a top Chinese producer.

But, Starbucks matcha powder may not be the highest quality available and is often combined with lots of sugar. So, even though Starbucks matcha has a higher score on the taste but its health benefits might be less.

What do you think about this? 

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