Does Starbucks Have Boba?

Does Starbucks Have Boba

The boba tea trend continues to soar, gaining popularity across markets. Boba tea or the bubble tea market’s value was US$2.4 billion in 2019. It is predicted to be worth US4. 3 billion dollars by 2027. 

This popularity has caught the attention of the coffee chain giant, Starbucks, to jump aboard the boba tea train.  Yes, that is right, the answer to the question “does Starbucks have boba tea?” is definitely yes. 

As you might know, Starbucks is popular, especially among Americans, where their routine every morning is to get a cup of coffee at their local Starbucks store. But now, Starbucks fans will look forward to something new as they offer their own version of the popular drink nowadays – the boba tea or bubble teas. 

Does Starbucks Have Boba

What Kind of Boba Tea Does Starbucks Have?

Boba tea and Starbucks may not seem right. But in 2024, it was reported that Starbucks is testing to enter the boba tea market. The Starbucks version of boba tea is created by adding  tapioca pearls to some of their iced coffee drinks. 

At first, Starbucks is testing the waters by introducing a limited test run of two drinks featuring “coffee pearls” made with tapioca. When it comes to exploring the business opportunities with bubble tea or boba tea, nothing can’t stop Starbucks in providing their own versions of boba tea offerings. 

Starbucks started their two boba tea beverages named “In the Dark,” which is an iced drink based on Starbucks’ Cold Brew. The second offering is named “Iced Chai Tea Latte with Coffee Pearls.” 

The Iced Chai Tea Latte has some tapioca pearls floating to the top of the cup, while In the Dark has the coffee pearls sinking to the bottom of the cup. The coffee popping pearls are Starbucks’ version of the regular tapioca pearls used by a tea shop that sells boba tea. 

Compared to the traditional chewy and dark boba dots seen in most Asian-style tea houses, Starbucks’ take on boba pearls is their unique selling point as it has  delicious pearls filled with actual coffee.

How Good Are Starbucks Boba or Bubble Tea Offerings?

Now that you know the answer to the question “Does Starbucks Have Boba?,” let’s find out how good their offerings are. Since Starbuck stores are known for their high-quality Starbucks coffee, we should expect that other Starbuck drinks, including boba drinks, should also taste good. 

If you search in social media, there are reviews on how boba or bubble teas from Starbucks compare to those boba tea from other bubble tea stores. As you might know and if you are one of those boba lovers, you might be familiar with how this Taiwanese tea-based drink tastes. 

There are different varieties of flavors that bubble tea stores would offer, but for now, Starbucks menu offers a limited flavor on their boba drinks in their Starbucks stores that sell boba tea. You can still have some add-ons including a huge variety of fruits, milk, tapioca and other jelly add-ons.

Reading the reviews, the main attraction would be their coffee popping pearls. One reviewer who bought the drinks at a local Starbucks store in Palm Desert said that the coffee popping boba pearls were “oddly salty-sweet” and “small and awkward to drink.”

Though the clamors are high with this Starbucks own boba tea, there are still people who are not satisfied with the drink. Many big fans, especially in the Asian-American communities, say that it is still worth the hype and this bubble tea of Starbucks was a fresh change for the coffee shop.

The release of the Boba tea on Starbucks is reminiscent of the time when Dunkin’ Donuts released their strawberry Popping Bubbles. Now that big companies like Starbucks are venturing into  the boba tea train, it is an indication that selling boba drinks can be a fruitful business venture.

Why Do You Think Starbucks Offers Boba Tea?

Though the offerings of Starbucks drinks on bubble tea or boba tea are very different from the original boba drinks sold on the bubble tea market. Boba tea originated in Taiwan, as a milk tea drink that can also be called Bubble Teas.

It is also called pearl milk tea or tapioca milk tea, as it is a milk tea drink with tapioca balls, sometimes referred to as tapioca pearls. Various choices have been created like fruit flavored milky teas, but the two that stand out as the most popular will be the black pearl milk tea and the green pearl milk tea. 

Now that this Taiwanese drink has exploded and is a big hit in the market over recent years, there are  thousands of bubble tea stores that have opened across the United States. There are Starbucks fans who love boba that kept on demanding and waited for the coffee shop to offer their own boba tea. 

At first, Starbucks offered a drink to their fans with a secret recipe called Raspberry Milk Tea to satisfy their Starbucks and milk tea needs. Later on, new boba drinks arrived at some Starbuck stores to satisfy the cravings for coffee drinks with tapioca pearls.

Since boba tea has been a massive hit in the US, other stores like Dunkin’ Donuts and burger chain Sonic have also sold bubble tea to cope up to the growing boba tea market as it becomes a popular drink.

The boba tea is definitely a great addition to the Starbucks menu for the following reasons:

Easy to prepare –  All you need is boiling water to prepare the tapioca pearls, just like cooking pasta. Well, the process of creating the chewy tapioca pearls is similar to creating pasta dough. The drink portion or the base of the drink is also easy to mix and you just add the cooked tapioca pearls, especially that Starbucks infused this on their drinks like espresso fusion.

Staff Can Make It – As the drinks are very easy to prepare, staff can be taught easily on how to prepare these pearl tea drinks. This benefit is very useful when high-volume situations occur. It is a simple  pour-and-blend or pour-and-shake preparation for the milky teas to achieve the perfect boba taste. 

More Sales – On average, a small store that has a good location can sell boba up to 500 milk teas per day. Just imagine what Starbucks stores would sell each day. If they sell boba, that would mean more revenues as they would also entice other customers who are into this milky tea delight.

What Are the Most Popular Boba Tea Flavors?

Aside from the usual black and green tea, you can expand your boba tea experience by trying out some new flavors. If you’re tired of getting raspberry milk tea, check out these popular delights at some Starbucks locations. 

Hong Kong, an iced shaken black tea is an all-time favorite flavor. It is an iced black tea selection of boba and is a classic choice. You can even make this easily at home with black teas and sweetened condensed milk.

You can’t go wrong with Taro, which is a popular drink made with taro root powder mix made for boba drinks and smoothies.  If you are looking for a flavor that has a nut-like taste and is better than traditional vanilla lattes or milkshakes, you sure can’t get enough with Taro. 

Matcha is one of those flavors that nearly all coffee and boba shops have. Matcha boba tea has a vibrant and earthy flavor coming from the matcha powder mixes. It is usually integrated with a splash of honey, almond milk or your preferred sweetener.

If you want something creamy, sweet and orange drink with a delicious depth of flavor and silky texture, go for the Thai flavor. But the cherry on the top would be the simple yet delectable brown sugar. It is probably the best among the best and if you haven’t tried the brown sugar milk tea, you’re missing a lot. 

Now that we are aware that Starbucks does offer boba tea on their menu, you might need to explore some of them by visiting a local store in your area. They might now offer bubble tea waters with chewy tapioca balls, you can still try their milky tea offers. 

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