When people think of McDonald's, it's always associated with a few negative connotations. They automatically think of guilty pleasures, gluttony, and a creepy looking clown. When Starbucks is brought to the table, people tend to associate it with hearty rush of caffeine to get you through the day, and maybe a tasty little treat to fill the hole. The main criticisms of Starbucks are that their goods come with a steep bill and maybe a bit of an addiction as their coffees contain way more caffeine than the competitors. A student with a Starbucks addiction can be ten grand in the hole and have late payments on just about everything, but rest assured, he/she will get their Starbucks fix come morning time.
It's common knowledge that Starbucks is hard on your wallet, but what flies under the radar is the fact that it can be just as hard on your waistline. Granted, good old "Bucks" does give us a heads-up about certain items that will pack on the pounds. For example, there's one treat called "The Devil's Food Doughnut." Ha! They don't even try to hide that it's bad for you, it's that sinfully delicious.
Canada's food guide recommends 2600 calories per day for a moderately active, middle-aged male, and 2100 calories for a female under the same description. These numbers are just to put things into perspective so we can truly evaluate if wolfing down 800 calories at Starbucks is worthwhile. Keep in mind, we're looking at way less intake for those who are trying to lose weight (approximately 800 calories less). We also have to acknowledge the fact that Starbucks does offer a "skinny" option on some items. This basically means that it will contain way less calories but won't taste nearly as good.
I have to put down my scone for this one, here we go! The top 10 items at Starbucks that are secretly killing your diet:
10 Old-Fashioned Glazed Doughnut
Let's kick this one off with a very common culprit. As mentioned above, Starbucks tips us off about the "Devil's Food Doughnut," which is nice of them to give us a heads up that we're going to be indulging in some caloric deliciousness. But the "Old-Fashioned Glazed Doughnut" has a way more innocent name, but will do even worse damage to your waistline. The devil's poison contains 430 calories, and the old-fashioned one contains 480 calories. That seems pretty wasteful when you consider that a doughnut contains so much sugar and will just leave you hungry soon thereafter. Some would argue that when you order a doughnut, you should know that you're ingesting that many calories anyway. That isn't necessarily true as a chocolate glaze doughnut at Tim Horton's is only 290 calories...AND you get chocolate on it.
9 Multi-Grain Bagel
This one is annoying to no end and we can't completely throw Starbucks under the bus for it. There's an illusion that anything "multi-grain" has to be good for you, because...grains are good (eye-roll). There's also a popular assumption that white bread is one of the worst things you can eat, which isn't necessarily true either.
The reality is that these multi-grain bagels are evil. They come off with a seemingly unassuming name but they pack more calories (350) than any other bagel at Starbucks. It's not as if we're going to sit there gnawing at a dry bagel either. Butter and/or cream cheese would hit the table and then we're looking at 500 calories...for a bagel. Man, save it!
8 Peppermint Hot Chocolate
Apparently "peppermint" is a frightening concept when it comes to items at Starbucks. Generally speaking, peppermint is just flavoring and doesn't do too much damage, but these drinks would argue the contrary. If you order a grande (medium) peppermint hot chocolate at Starbucks, it will run you back 390 calories. On this end of the spectrum, we'd rather not spend an hour on the treadmill, sweating our buns off to burn 390 calories for a hot chocolate. But that whipped-cream, it's so delicious! Nah, these numbers don't include whipped-cream (just raining on everyone's parade today). Once the "whipped" is added, you're looking at 470 calories.
7 Peppermint White-Chocolate Mocha
Our more deceiving and evil peppermint item clocks in at number seven. It's more deceiving because this item is listed under espressos. An espresso drink (or shot) is generally known to give you a kick in the pants or that extra rush you need at 3 pm to get through the day. It's not often associated with high calorie intake. The problem is that this item is so highly decorated that it actually looks more like a dessert than a drink. Starbucks' description: "Rich espresso meets white chocolate sauce, peppermint-flavored syrup and steamed milk, then it's finished off with sweetened whipped-cream and dark chocolate curls." This will set you back 460 calories, but at lest the whipped cream is included this time, right? Nope, that applies just for the description! If we add a little "whipped", we're looking at 540 calories.
6 Egg-Salad Sandwich
Egg's generally contain 70 calories each (depending on the size). It's hard to imagine how a simple egg-salad sandwich would turn into a blunder of calories, but Starbucks manages! When there's a will, there's a freaking way. To be fair, at least there's some nutritional value in this 480 calorie sandwich, whereas we struggle to find any value in a Peppermint White-Chocolate Mocha (other than it tastes pretty good). The problem is that they lather frightening amounts of mayo on this sandwich, which makes it a diet killer. One could argue that an egg-salad sandwich at Subway only contains 70 calories less than the sandwich at Starbucks. That is true, but Subway's 6-inch sandwich is way bigger than the one offered at Starbucks and you can also throw in veggies to make it heartier without adding calories.
5 Eggnog Steamer
There's a reason eggnog only comes out during the holidays. The holidays are a time where everyone accepts that they're going to put on a few pounds, but sadly this item is available year round, ready to ruin your diet at a Starbucks near you! On the Starbucks website, they urge you to: "warm up with a blend of steamed milk and creamy eggnog, finished off with a sprinkle of ground nutmeg." We partially agree with that assessment, just replace the words "warm up" with "get fat." A drink called "a steamer" is very vague and ambiguous...it's also quite the enigma on the menu as it's listed under "kid's drinks and others." In this lifetime, have any of you readers ever heard of a kid requesting "a steamer?"
4 Eggnog Latte
The standard latte is one of the most popular drinks at Starbucks. It gives the customer the boost they need but it's not as harsh on the pallet because of the large amounts of steamed milk that are put in it. That standard edition of the latte will not crack this list as it will only set you back 190 calories. But this is another case of where eggnog strikes again...with the additions of eggnog, and a dusting of nutmeg, it suddenly transforms into a 470 calorie disaster. Ok, so we're done ripping on eggnog, but not at Starbucks and their "snacks."
3 Slow-Roasted Ham & Swiss Breakfast Sandwich
Yeah, we're sure there's a slow-roasted setting on the microwave, but let's stay on task here. This particular item can be directly compared to an item at McDonald's that tends to get a bad rap...the McMuffin. Now, there's plenty of variations of the McMuffin that will slowly but surely turn you into a blimp. But the standard and original McMuffin contains egg, a slice of cheese and ham. These are essentially the same ingredients that are in this slow-roasted ham and Swiss contraption. The standard McMuffin contains 300 calories while Starbucks spin on it packs-on 490 calories. Why in the blue hell would anyone pickup this sandwich that's way more expensive, has almost 200 more calories, and most importantly, doesn't taste nearly as good?!
2 Turkey Pesto Panini
Whenever someone is on a "health kick," turkey is usually included in their diet because it's very lean and packed with protein. It pains me to say anything positive about "Jared from Subway," but a 6-inch turkey sandwich for lunch was part of his successful weight-loss regimen. That's about all the credit we will give Jared as he's hopefully getting a taste of his own medicine in the slammer.
As innocent as adding a little pesto and a slice of cheese sounds, it wreaks havoc on your diet. This pesto massacre will run you 520 calories and doesn't even taste that good. The prices of the lunch sandwiches are even more astronomically priced than the breakfast ones as they're around seven dollars each. For that price, you'd think that you could have the option of skipping the pesto, but rest assured, you do not! These sandwiches are pre packaged. What a calorie filled rip-off.
1 Cheese And Fruit Bistro Box
It's amazing how the "Bistro Box" with the least substance has the most calories. Yep, the cheese and fruit box narrowly outdoes the "Prosciutto & Mozzarella Pinwheels Bistro Box." It would appear that this box is simply cheese, apples, crackers and a couple of walnuts. Sadly, everything in this box (minus the apples) will very quietly wreck your diet.
The main reason why this bistro box clocks in at number one is because it's 470 calories and barely constitutes as a meal. As a customer, you will blow well over five dollars of your hard earned money as you pick away at this snack that will leave you hungry.
The main issue with the bistro box is that they really overdo it with the cheese. The box contains brie, bold gouda and cheddar. There's really no need for 3 types of cheese as it should be eaten sparingly. This also goes back to the "not all grains are good" segment! The crackers in the box are "9-grain" and packed with calories.
Personally, I'm not even interested in one of those nine grains or their bistro box.