Chocolate Cream Cold Brew: All You Need Is Chocolate Love
Confession time: we aren’t huge summer lovers. Summer for us means endless sunscreen reapplying, sweat, and heat fatigue. But one thing that makes the summer season charming is Starbucks’ seasonal menu. You’ll find us first in line when their new drinks come out.
Imagine our surprise when we took the long-awaited first sip and found that sweet chocolate flavor pairs deliciously with smooth cold brew.
We had one taste and knew we had to recreate our Starbucks chocolate cream cold brew recipe. It took some experimenting and a few failed attempts, but we’re happy to report we have a perfect copycat recipe that’ll keep you going all summer. Take a breather and enter the zen state of mind by watching the white tendrils of cold foam mix with the cold brown brew.
What You Need
- 10 oz cold brew
- vanilla syrup
- chocolate cream cold foam
At A Glance
15 minutes or 12 hours if you’re making cold brew yourself
16 oz (grande)
How to Make Starbucks Chocolate Cream Cold Brew
Chocolate cream cold brew is a simple Starbucks drink you can easily recreate at home. Plus, you can customize it however you want.
Starbucks said this drink will bring customers “back to their favorite memories with each sip.” We certainly agree it’s a delicious combo of ice, cold coffee, chocolate, and vanilla. This is your ideal drink if you love smooth cold brew but want a sweet flavor and extra creaminess.
Let’s get into how to brew grande chocolate cream cold brew step-by-step.
Step 1: Make the Vanilla Syrup
You may think making the cold brew is the first step, considering it takes hours to steep. However, you should make the vanilla syrup first by using these ingredients:
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 vanilla bean
Take out a pot, pour in sugar and water, and bring to a boil. Once the mixture is boiling, lower the heat and simmer for ten minutes. The sugar needs to dissolve completely, and the water should thicken.
Next, slice a vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape out the seeds. Transfer the syrup into a jar or a bottle and add the scraped seeds and the vanilla bean. Let the syrup steep in the fridge for seven to eight hours.
But if you are unwilling to wait seven hours for your vanilla syrup, let the mixture cool, and shake the jar to infuse the vanilla flavor from the bean and the seeds. Taste to check if the flavor is strong enough for you. If not, shake more.
Pro tip 1: Want a stronger vanilla flavor? Leave the vanilla bean in the jar and wait up to seven hours. Also, don’t limit yourself to chocolate cream cold brew. You can use this vanilla syrup in cocktails, desserts, oatmeals, pancakes, waffles, and a wide variety of other coffee drinks.
Pro tip 2: Missing a vanilla bean? You can use vanilla extract. However, remember it’s not as fragrant as the vanilla bean.
Step 2: Make the Cold Brew
Cold brew takes at least 12 hours. You’ll need:
- 1/2 coarsely ground coffee beans
- 2 cups water
- 1 tbsp vanilla syrup
Pour water into your French press, add coarsely ground coffee and vanilla syrup, and leave in the fridge for at least 12 hours.
Once you’ve finished this step, press the plunger down, and strain it into a jar.
Pro tip 1: Need a handheld milk frother, but you don’t have it at the moment? Use a mason jar, French press, hand mixer, or blender instead. Whichever device you use, you’ll know the cold foam is ready when it doubles in volume. You can store cold brew with vanilla syrup in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week.
Pro tip 2: If 12 hours seem too long to wait for your cold brew, simply buy pre-made cold brew at Starbucks or simply use iced coffee.
Step 3: Make the Chocolate Cream Cold Foam
Good cold brew drinks have smooth, velvety cold foam, and Starbucks has a wide range of cream-based foams, such as pumpkin cream, salted caramel cream, and vanilla sweet cream. Cold foam in Starbucks is usually made with:
- 2 tbsp 2% milk
- 2 tbsp heavy cream
- 1 tsp vanilla syrup
- 1 tbsp chocolate malt powder
Make the cold foam by combining the cream, milk, chocolate milk powder, and vanilla syrup in a bowl. Beat the ingredients with a handheld frother until the mixture doubles and turns frothy. Keep in the fridge for two to three days in an airtight container until you’re ready to use the cold foam. You may need to re-whip the cream foam to improve the texture and consistency.
If the cold foam cascades down and doesn’t stay on top when you add it to cold brew, here is what to do:
- First, whip the heavy cream with a whisk until it turns thick.
- Next, add the other ingredients and continue to whip.
This step unites the cold foam ingredients so that the heavy cream and milk don’t get separated. But suppose the cold foam won’t whip well or it’s too thick. In that case, chill the heavy cream or add more cream to get a thick foam that will sit on top of the cold brew; and if it’s too thick, add more milk.
Pro tip 1: Use malted chocolate milk powder, as it stabilizes the cold cream and adds the malt flavor. And if you want to make your own chocolate malt powder, use Dutch process cocoa powder for a more chocolatey flavor (1). Then mix 1 1/2 teaspoons malted milk powder, 1/2 Dutch process cocoa powder, and 1/2 teaspoon sugar.
Step 4: Combine the Chocolate Cream Cold Brew Ingredients
Once you have all the layers ready to go, it’s time to combine them. Take out a tall glass and fill it with ice. Pour your cold brew coffee, add the vanilla syrup, and mix. Pour the chocolate cold foam on top, and enjoy. Taste the cold chocolate foam Starbucks patiently by drinking it from the rim instead of through a straw.
You can add chocolate shavings on top if you’re feeling extra indulgent.
Pro tip 1: Is the drink too sweet for you? Use less vanilla syrup, for example, 1/2 ounce. Or, don’t use the syrup at all. This way, you’ll only get sweetness from the cold foam.
Pro tip 2: If the drink isn’t sweet enough, add more vanilla syrup or chocolate cold foam. You can also customize the drink by trying out different syrups. For example, you can try brown sugar syrup, white mocha, and raspberry.
Chocolate cream cold brew is a perfect combo of cold brew coffee and sweet cold foam, and it’s a great refresher during the summer months. We explained how to make each layer yourself, but you can always go the easier route and buy the coffee and cold foam pre-made at the store.
Finally, experiment with different amounts of coffee, cold foam, and syrups to find your perfect recipe.
Chocolate cream cold brew is a Starbucks drink. It contains cold brew, vanilla syrup, and chocolate cream cold foam. This is one of the newer drinks on the Starbucks menu, having been released in May 2022 (2). Starbucks makes cold brew by steeping coffee in cool water, and this is a different method than iced coffee, simply hot coffee poured over ice. Chocolate cream cold brew was released for the summer months but is now available year-round.
Chocolate cream cold brew has 185 mg of caffeine (3). The caffeine in this drink comes from cold brew, which has more caffeine than iced coffee. Adding one or more espresso shots to the drink can get even more caffeine if needed. Remember that the FDA recommends the maximum daily caffeine intake to be 400 mg (4), and chocolate cream cold brew will quickly take you to the limit.
There are 250 calories in chocolate cream cold brew grande size. Chocolate cream cold brew calories come from vanilla syrup, which contains a lot of sugar, and cold foam, which contains heavy cream and milk. Keep in mind the larger the size of the drink you opt for, the more calories it’ll have. In other words, venti chocolate cream cold brew has 300 calories.
No, chocolate cold brew isn’t bitter. It tastes like a nice blend of coffee with some sweetness from the cold foam and vanilla syrup. There’s also a noticeable coffee flavor from the cold brew. Starbucks uses a blend of Latin American and African coffee, so there’s a balance between the coffee flavor and cold foam sweetness.
- Dutch-Process vs. Natural Cocoa Powder (and When to Use Them). (2014, January 6). Food52. https://food52.com/blog/9470-dutch-process-vs-natural-cocoa-powder-when-to-use-them
- Starbucks Chocolate Cream Cold Brew is the newest way to cool down with cold coffee this summer. (n.d.). Starbucks Stories. https://stories.starbucks.com/press/2022/starbucks-chocolate-cream-cold-brew-is-the-newest-way-to-cool-down-with-cold-coffee-this-summer/
- Starbucks®. (n.d.). Www.starbucks.com. Retrieved May 1, 2023, from https://www.starbucks.com/menu/product/2123644/iced/nutrition
- Spilling the Beans: How Much Caffeine is Too Much? (2020). FDA. https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/spilling-beans-how-much-caffeine-too-much