REVIEW: Dunkin’ Cake Batter Signature Latte

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte 1

Summer is (sort of) here, and with it comes Dunkin’s new summer menu featuring the Cake Batter Signature Latte because nothing says summer like stirring unbaked cake into your coffee. What, you’ve never done that? Do you mean to tell me you’ve never set out to make a cake, decided it was too hot to turn on the oven, and then solved the problem by just swirling the batter into your espresso? Yeah, me neither, but that didn’t stop me from deciding I needed to know what it would be like if I did.

Combining espresso and milk with cake batter flavor and topped with whipped cream, mocha drizzle, and rainbow sprinkles, this beverage blurs the lines between coffee and dessert. It looks like something you’d order if you decided to have a little party for yourself.

My quest for this party began on a cold Chicago day where summer felt far away, but the idea of coffee with sprinkles felt just right. I ordered both iced and hot versions, and my request was met with confusion. I couldn’t tell if this was because the employee didn’t understand why I’d want both or if he didn’t know what the Cake Batter Latte was. After some questioning, I received them, and now it was my turn to be confused.

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte First Attempt

Both had whipped cream and sprinkles, but “rainbow” would be a stretch as most were white or very muted pastels. Where there should have been a mocha drizzle, there was a thin, tan syrup and a dash of brown powder. The drinks weren’t bad but were kind of sad looking and tasted nothing like cake batter. I walked away thinking I had two possibly hazelnut flavored lattes and vowed to try again.

Ok, Round Two! A new day, a new Dunkin’ location.

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte Cake on Summer

This time I opted for just the iced version and was relieved when it looked more like the image on the menu encouraging me to “Cake on the Summer.” Don’t mind if I do! The mocha drizzle was clearly present this time, and the sprinkles had a brighter appearance. Then it came to taste time and I was disappointed that the bulk of this coffee is the same flavor I had before, and it still doesn’t taste like cake batter to me. It seemed closer to a French Vanilla and I’m wondering if the nuttiness is some sort of almond flavoring. Almond extract is a fairly typical ingredient in many cakes, so maybe it’s unfair to say this doesn’t taste like one. I should say that it doesn’t taste like the kind I thought it would, a vanilla-forward birthday cake mix. Maybe this tastes like a petit four?

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte Sprinkles

Dunkin Cake Batter Signature Latte Mocha Drizzle

The espresso has a rich flavor and the (non)cake batter flavoring and toppings don’t totally overwhelm it. It’s sweet but more balanced than you might anticipate something swirled with cake batter to be. The mocha drizzle doesn’t add much taste but aesthetically contributes to a decorated cake look, and the drink itself is pleasantly creamy. Some sips seem thicker and sweeter, like frosting, which wouldn’t really be present in cake batter but does make one think of cake. The highlights for me were any sips with sprinkles. They don’t taste like anything, but they provide some textural pop and festivity. If made correctly, this drink looks like it should be served next to presents and a bounce house, but the taste doesn’t deliver the same amount of fun.

Update: There was a birthday in my house this week, and because I care about authenticity, I sampled a boxed mug cake batter and a homemade cupcake batter. Both confirmed my suspicions that I know what cake batter tastes like, and this latte doesn’t capture it.

Purchased Price: $5.29
Size: Medium (Iced)
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (Medium iced with whole milk) 440 calories, 14 grams of fat, 8 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 45 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 67 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 62 grams of sugar (45 grams of added sugar), and 11 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Cornbread Donut

Dunkin Cornbread Donut One

What is Dunkin’s Cornbread Donut?

Heads up to that one guy who kept pestering Dunkin’ to make a glazed corn cake donut.

Your time has finally come, my friend.

How is it?

Ok, well, I don’t actually know if this aforementioned guy exists, but I certainly didn’t expect Dunkin’ to add cornbread to its menu in any form. I was pretty skeptical, but it’s a tasty little donut.

Dunkin Cornbread Donut Two

That skepticism was hard to shake at first, too. I ordered one donut, and the Dunkin’ employee gave me two. Was it because they were so bad no one was ordering them or was it just because of my winning smile? I’m still not entirely sure, but I appreciated it and enjoyed them both.

The cornbread donut is similar in texture and density to Dunkin’s more “cakey” donuts.

Dunkin Cornbread Donut Inside

It’s glazed and has stripes of white icing, so I expected it to be equal parts sweet and savory, but it’s sweeter than expected, with the cornbread being pretty disguised. I’d say this is 80% sweet, 20% savory.

You’d barely notice the cornbread flavor if it weren’t for that familiar grittiness of the cake. You know that consistency cornbread has, where you can almost taste little bits of sandy cornmeal? That comes through, which I could see being a dealbreaker for some.

I also expected this to be very dry, but it was – here comes that dreaded word – moist.

Anything else you need to know?

Your mileage will vary on this one depending on which type of Dunkin’ donut you prefer. This falls right in line with the glazed blueberry, pumpkin, and the chocolate devil’s food donuts. I love a blueberry from time to time despite how heavy they are.

I’d rank this last among those, but it’s not a huge gap. The sweetness from the glaze and that little bit of cornbread flavor makes it unique enough to stand on its own. At worst, you should grab one of these if you order a dozen.


I ultimately don’t know if this one will make the cut and be anything more than a limited flavor, but it’s worth a shot. You could even just order one in Munchkin form if you’re scared of wasting food.

I appreciate the idea, and I enjoyed the outcome. If Dunkin’ doesn’t do a banana bread donut like this next, I’m gonna be really bummed.

Purchased Price: $1.35
Size: N/A
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 380 calories, 20 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 420 milligrams of sodium, 45 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 31 grams of total sugars, and 4 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew

Dunkin Salted Caramel Cold Brew Cup

This was a hard review to write, and by that, I mean I gave in to the temptation to take a tiny taste of cold foam immediately after leaving Dunkin’ and then had to exert a downright colossal amount of willpower to make the suddenly-excruciating three-minute walk home without downing the entire thing.

First, I need to shine a spotlight on the lid that delivered this sweet sneak peek. If you’ve had a drink with cold foam before, you’re probably already familiar with its wider-than-usual opening that serves a mouthful of intact foam with each no-straw-required sip (before the foam inevitably melts, anyway).

Dunkin Salted Caramel Cold Brew Foam

Next, I need to thank said lid for allowing me to experience such a delicious flavor. The Salted Caramel Cream Cold Brew name is predictably accurate, as right off the bat, the foam packs a mix of salt, caramel, and cream flavors. Interestingly, though, while I don’t usually think of either salt or caramel as being subtle, they were not what stood out to me in my sampling. That honor goes to the foam’s creaminess, and I don’t just mean its soft, luxurious texture. The flavor that it most reminded me of was actually Twinkie filling. Sure, its rich, sweet taste played a large part in that, but so did the sheer feeling of comfort it brought me. Coffee tends to get a bad rap through its association with the stressed out, overworked, and under-slept, but this saccharine cold foam had me feeling childlike wonder.

Dunkin Salted Caramel Cold Brew Half Full

The cold brew (which I ordered black, though you can opt for cream) felt pretty standard with its dark, almost chocolatey flavor profile. While it was velvety and milder than a brew of the non-cold variety, I didn’t get much of the tang of saltiness nor the buttery richness of caramel from the drink itself. Notably, it performed a bit of color-changing magic. Remember that inevitably melty foam? The coffee started out a very deep brown but ended up practically tan from foam seepage, which presumably contributed to its rich, silky taste. I’ve witnessed the occasional schism between “serious” coffee drinkers who prefer a plain and simple experience and those like myself who welcome every frilly flavor out there, but I don’t think this offering is any less elegant for its sweetness, achieving a middle ground that can appeal to both sides.

I will say, I’m not sure why this is specifically a spring menu item. Maybe I’m just distracted by the thought of caramel apples, but the flavor strikes me as autumnal, if anything. So it’s a bit of a seasonal stretch, but eh, tomayto, tomahto (or cair-a-mel, car-mel).

Ultimately, if you’re not already a cold brew fan, I don’t think this will be the drink to convert you. But if you are a curious connoisseur — or if you’re just looking for some extra pep in your step and want a smooth, multifaceted flavor to help you achieve it — I’d recommend checking this one out.

Purchased Price: $5.00
Size: Small (12 oz)
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 140 calories, 2.5 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 75 milligrams of sodium, 28 grams of total carbohydrates, 27 grams of total sugars, 0 grams of fiber, and 1 gram of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Roasted Tomato & Hummus Toast

Dunkin Roasted Tomato  Hummus Toast Box

What is Dunkin’s Roasted Tomato & Hummus Toast?

A little over a year after the debut of its Avocado Toast, Dunkin’ brings a new item to its expanding toast menu. This variety starts with the same sourdough bread but has hummus as the spread and is topped with oven-roasted tomatoes. It’s then finished with a generous dusting of za’atar seasoning (oregano, thyme, sumac).

How is it?

I genuinely feel like Dunkin’ must be reading my diary because this item feels made for me. Hummus is one of the foods you will always find in my fridge, and za’atar is a pantry staple. Admittedly, I was a little worried the quality of both would be lacking since the Avocado Toast was a letdown. The first bite, however, was delicious. The hummus has a strong but not overpowering garlic flavor that works well with the sourdough. Za’atar adds a kick that elevates the entire item.

Dunkin Roasted Tomato  Hummus Toast Tomato Closeup

The oven-roasted tomatoes honestly reminded me more of sun-dried tomatoes in the sweetness they had. They felt like rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes (if that’s even possible?), and it was a pleasant surprise. I wish the tomato pieces were a little smaller, as taking a bite with them meant you were committed to a whole tomato chunk.

Anything else you need to know?

From now until March 22nd, if you order the Hummus & Roasted Tomato Toast through the app, you will get 2x the points. If you don’t like tomatoes, you can request just the hummus and za’atar on the toasted sourdough.


Dunkin Roasted Tomato  Hummus Toast Side

The Roasted Tomato & Hummus Toast is an absolute win for Dunkin’. The price is a little high for what amounts to a snack, but it feels worth the cost because of the quality of ingredients and size of the item. It feels like a slide out of the breakfast zone and more into a midday snack you can grab when you get your afternoon caffeine boost. Just make sure to have some gum or mints after to curb that hummus breath.

Purchased Price: $3.99
Size: N/A
Rating: 9 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 piece) 300 calories, 13 grams of fat, 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 690 milligrams of sodium, 39 grams of carbohydrates, 6 grams of fiber, 5 grams of sugar, and 8 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Shamrock Macchiato

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Layers

No, it’s not mint flavored.

I assume this is the answer to the first question that popped into your head when you saw the product name. And it’s a reasonable thing to ask: Dunkin’ introduced the Shamrock Macchiato in a news release only two days after the iconic St. Patrick’s Day shake with the same moniker and color returned to McDonald’s.

I love mint and coffee together, so I was let down to learn this beverage instead contained the preexisting (albeit seasonal) Irish Creme flavor swirl with a clover-hued makeover. Still, I think Irish cream is delicious and I love that this swirl lets me enjoy the taste of it sans alcohol, so my disappointment quickly dissipated as I became eager to see how it complemented a macchiato.

As I mentioned, the Irish Creme swirl is a bright, grassy green this year. It was drizzled into 2% milk (the default at that store) in the bottom half of my to-go cup, which lightened the shade to a pastel. With the espresso on top, there was a unique color blocking effect that would cause a few rubbernecks from passersby, but I honestly didn’t find the combination of colors all that attractive.

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Top

I’ve heard of people drinking a simple two ingredient cocktail of Bailey’s and milk, and I totally get it now. I took a sip of just the Irish Cremed milk before mixing the two halves, and it was rich and delicious. Dunkin’ definitely got the essence of Irish cream right and did a great job mimicking the taste and slight burn of the alcohol in this swirl. However, the sweetness of the syrup with whatever was used to give it a faux whiskey flavor oddly gave it notes of cherry and almond that, while tasty, would make more sense in an Amaretto flavor swirl.

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Mixed

Once mixed, the macchiato took on a nauseous green tinge that made it look like it had eaten some bad oysters. Luckily it tasted way better than it looked, and I think it was a smart move to add Irish Creme to a macchiato. The strong and bitter espresso toned down the sweetness of the swirl and made it more balanced than it would be in a drink made with Dunkin’s thinner and milder coffee. The Irish Creme paired nicely with the espresso and milk as one would expect, but the swirl may have tasted even more like the real thing if the drink had been made with whole milk since Irish cream is, well, creamier.

Dunkin Shamrock Macchiato Top 2

If you can overlook the misleading name, the occasional discomfort of feeling like you’re breaking the law as you drink it in the car, and the sickly green hue upon stirring, give this macchiato a try. I wouldn’t say it sham-rocks, but it’s clo-very good.

Purchased Price: $5.05
Size: Medium
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (With whole milk) 280 calories, 6 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 3.5 grams of saturated fat, 20 milligrams of cholesterol, 190 milligrams of sodium, 48 grams of total carbohydrates, 45 grams of total sugars, 0 grams of fiber, and 8 grams of protein.