REVIEW: Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew

Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew

What is Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew?

Starbucks has introduced three new cold brew flavors in nitrogen-infused cans – Black, Dark Caramel, and Vanilla Sweet Cream.

How is it?

It had me at “Nitro.” If any coffee shop offers anything Nitro, I’m getting it every time. It’s smoother and tastier than the regular fare. There’s also that added element of fun, watching the gas go to work on the coffee.

As for these three flavors? You can’t go wrong with any of ’em, but one did stand out above the others:

Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew Vanilla Sweet Cream

Vanilla Sweet Cream – The nitro gave each of these a fluffy head, but Vanilla Sweet Cream had the creamiest, which lent itself to an amazing mouthfeel. It tasted like coffee with a shot or two of birthday cake-flavored creamer. I mean, it’s probably just vanilla, but “Birthday Cake” is such a trendy flavor, it instantly put me in mind of that. It’s not cloying in any way either.

I’ve grabbed many a Starbucks drink from the 7-Eleven fridge over many an early morning, and this ranks near the top. I was impressed by the sweet flavor compared to the nutritional stats, which are totally manageable and non-egregious.

Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew Dark Caramel

Dark Caramel – I frequent a local shop that offers a Toffee Cold Brew, and that is exactly what this tasted like – strong coffee with a dash of delicious English toffee. A toffee coffee. It’s not as sweet or creamy as the Vanilla Sweet Cream, and it may have tasted slightly artificial, but it was still very good.

Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew Black

Black – This one may have surprised me the most. I’ve never been a black coffee kinda guy, but the nitro gives this the effect of having some kind of dairy mixed in. The coffee flavor is strong, maybe a tad acidic, but not overwhelming because the velvety foam does more than enough to make up for the lack of creamer.

Dark Caramel was a perfect center point between the sweetness of Vanilla Sweet Cream and the no-frills coffee flavor you get in the Black. They all complimented each other nicely.

Is there anything else you need to know?

Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew Nitrogen

If you’ve ever had Guinness Stout or any other nitro canned beverage, you probably know what to expect. Each can has a little nitrogen infuser that releases a bubbly hiss when you crack the can.

Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew Foam

There are few things prettier than a silky pour of Guinness foam dancing up a beer glass, and if I had to complain about anything, it would be that these coffees put on a much more muted show.

I’ve also had nitro coffee from Trader Joe’s that had better dance moves than these, but I’m just nitpicking. It may not have my desired show effect, but the nitrogen certainly does its job, making each of these foamy and silky smooth.


Starbucks usually knocks it out of the park with their pre-packaged beverages, but these shot to the top for me. Nitro never disappoints, and these were every bit as good as what I’d get inside an actual Starbucks.

Purchased Price: $2.50 each
Size: 9.6 fl. oz.
Purchased at: Stop and Shop
Rating: Vanilla Sweet Cream: 9 out of 10 (Vanilla Sweet Cream), 8 out of 10 (Dark Caramel), 8 out of 10 (Black)
Nutrition Facts: Vanilla Sweet Cream – 70 calories, 1.5 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 5 milligrams of cholesterol, 45 milligrams of sodium, 13 grams of carbohydrates, 11 grams of sugar (7 grams of added sugar), 3 grams of protein, and 110 milligrams of caffeine. Dark Caramel – 45 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 0 milligrams of sodium, 10 grams of carbohydrates, 8 grams of sugar (8 grams of added sugar,) 1 gram of protein, and 155 milligrams of caffeine. Black – 10 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 0 milligrams of sodium, 2 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of sugar, 1 gram of protein, and 155 milligrams of caffeine.

3 thoughts to “REVIEW: Starbucks Canned Nitro Cold Brew”

  1. Tried the vanilla sweet cream today and actually liked it. With how sweet it was, I’m surprised at how little sugar is in it. Definitely wasn’t lacking in coffee flavor. My biggest issues with it was the price (got them for 2 for $5 at Target, think original price was near $3) and the fact that it’s one of those cheaper aluminium cans where the top sometimes doesn’t want to pop.

  2. I LOVE Starbucks Nitro, pretty much the only thing I get in store. I tried the black unflavored and wasn’t impressed. The foam was pretty pathetic and nowhere near enough to give the cold brew that creaminess. If I see the Vanilla I’ll have to try that. I don’t like caramel in my coffee. I work for Starbucks so I was really hoping to like this, but meh.

    There’s another brand female owned and operated out of Colorado named Wild Barn Coffee that is really good.

    Another option that I bought via Kickstarter is Growler Werks Nitro Cold-Brew keg.
    It actually works really well. The one thing they kind of gloss over is you do have to shake it for a minute or two before pouring, but it’s a good little warm up to earn your coffee and you can use whatever coffee you like.

Comments are closed.