Red cup fans, brace yourselves: UK online marketplace OnBuy.com has had a closer look at the nutritional value of 2018’s Christmas hot drinks from five major coffee chains in the UK – Starbucks, Costa, Caffè Nero, Pret a Manger and Greggs.
To discover who slips in the most sugar and which drinks contain the most total calories, researchers compared ‘regular’ size drinks from each brand, all made with the standard option of semi-skimmed milk. And, as expected, their findings are pretty shocking.
The award for the Christmas hot drink with the smallest amount of sugar goes to Costa, with their Caramelised Orange Latte – containing 20.5g of sugar (just over five teaspoons) and 243 calories.
Meanwhile, Caffè Nero takes the crown for the hot drink with the lowest number of calories – their Salted Caramel Latte has just 153 calories and 24.6g of sugar – and in third place is Pret a Manger’s Gingerbread Latte, with 24.8g of sugar and 310 calories.
Pret also nabbed fourth place with their Crème Brûlée Latte, containing 26.6g of sugar and 260 calories, followed by Starbucks’ Toffee Nut Latte in fifth place with 28.3g of sugar and 260 calories.
According to OnBuy.com, Pret’s Gingerbread Latte is the sixth ‘healthiest’ festive hot drink, containing 24.8g of sugar and 258 calories. This is followed by Costa’s Hazelnut Praline Latte (28.8g of sugar and 303 calories) and Caffè Nero’s Caramelised Almond Brittle Latte (29.5g of sugar and 384 calories).
Just tipping the 30g-of-sugar mark is Greggs’ Salted Caramel Latte (30g of sugar and 240 calories) and Costa’s Caramelised Orange Hot Chocolate (30.5g of sugar and 321 calories).
And next up on the sugar offenders list are three Starbucks options: the Salted Caramel Brownie Hot Chocolate (38.3 g of sugar and 319 calories); the Christmas Brulee Latte (37.8g of sugar and 247 calories); and the Eggnog Late (33.8g of sugar and 272 calories).
Unsurprisingly, out of the top ten calorific and sugary festive hot drinks, seven are hot chocolate. This year, the festive drink with most grams of sugar is the Belgian Truffle Hot Chocolate from Caffè Nero, with a regular cup containing 56.9g of sugar – that’s a whopping 14 teaspoons – and 335 calories).