Starbucks nonfat milk vs. whole milk: which one is better?

Nonfat milk and whole milk are both dairy milk options at Starbucks, but they have a significant difference in their fat content. I do not have any allergen reactions, and therefore, I take any of the milk options without a problem. However, some Starbucks enthusiasts do not get the difference and think that milk is milk and there is no difference. In this post, we will look at both options and see their difference. By the end of this post, you will learn which option is better.

What are the differences between Starbucks nonfat milk vs. whole milk


Nonfat milk

Whole milk


Lactose, water, nutrients

Lactose, water, nutrients, fat

Taste Profile

Watery, light

Thick and creamy

Caffeine/Nutritional Value

12 calories per ounce, 9g protein, 10g sugar, 0 fat, 10g carbs in a short serving

18 calories per ounce, 13g fat, 19g carbs, 13g proteins


Readily available

Readily available

Starbucks Nonfat milk vs. whole milk-How they compare

Starbucks nonfat milk

What it’s made of -Ingredients?

Normal dairy milk, like the Starbucks whole milk contains lactose, water, protein, and mineral. Mostly, Starbucks serves whole milk at 2% in lattes, mochas, and tea drinks, but you can also get a glass of steamed whole milk. This type of milk is suitable for people who have no lactose allergies. It can be steamed and frothed to achieve the desired consistency.

On the other hand, Starbucks offers nonfat dairy milk. This milk contains lactose, water, protein, and minerals but lacks fat. This milk is skimmed to rid it of its natural fat. When you look at the Starbucks menu, you will come across the name skinny. This word means nonfat milk. You can order a skinny late, skinny flat white, or skinny mocha. You will get a drink with nonfat milk. The Starbucks skim milk is made by getting rid of all-natural cream to leave it nonfat.

In the ingredients category, both are dairy milk options and have lactose. Therefore, we give this category a draw.

Taste Profile

Whole milk is the purest dairy milk available commercially. At Starbucks, you will feel the creamy taste and smooth texture of this milk. Dairy milk is rich in taste and has a fatty twist when unskimmed. This creaminess is transferred to the drinks it is added to. When you order a Caffe latte, you will have a treat of creamy, toned-down coffee drink. This consistency has been copied in other milk options, but none has fully achieved it. The closest milk option to this is plant-based oat milk. It is not exactly as thick as whole milk, but it comes closest to it.

Nonfat milk is dairy milk without the fat. When skimming, the top cream is removed to leave it without fat. Does it affect its taste? Yes, it does. Some people have described its taste as watery, which makes sense as the fat that thickens it is not present. When added to a latte, you will notice that it is less creamy than whole milk. This is not always a bad thing because it will not overpower your espresso or tea, and you can still taste these ingredients. If you are craving dairy milk, this is your go-to option, and you will down it without any guilt.

In this category, whole milk takes a comfortable lead. Nothing beats the creaminess and thickness of pure dairy milk.

Caffeine/nutritional value

Whole milk contains no caffeine until it is added to espresso or black tea. A Grande serving of steamed whole milk at Starbucks gives you 20% fat, which equates to 13g. The cholesterol is at 13% of the daily value. The daily value connotes the required total intake of an item in a day. If fat is at 20%, it means that one must fill in the 65g of the fat gap with other items to achieve a healthy daily value. Anything above the daily value is unhealthy. The carbs in at a decent 19g which is 6% of the daily value. Sugars are at 19g, and protein at 13g. Sodium is on the lower side at 170mg, which is 7% of the daily value. The Starbucks whole milk has 18 calories per ounce and are the highest among all milk options.

Nonfat milk contains all the ingredients of whole milk except fat. Like whole milk, it is not caffeinated until it is added to espresso, green tea, or black tea. The cholesterol is at zero, and so is the fat. You will find no saturated or unsaturated fats in this milk option. The carbohydrates are slashed by half and come in at 10g in a short serving. The sugars are 10g and proteins at 9g in a Short serving. Starbuck nonfat milk has 12 calories per ounce. This is the lowest in calories among all Starbucks milk options.

In this category, the nonfat milk takes the lead. Skimming takes off fat and cholesterol that are not the healthiest things to ingest.


Whole dairy milk is easily accessible and always available at Starbucks. However, there have been concerns about how environmentally sustainable dairy milk is. However, there have not been any repercussions, and the milk supply is still steady. All you need to do is place your order at the counter and receive your Short, Tall, Grande, and venti steamed whole milk.

The Starbucks nonfat milk is readily available in all stores. There have never been any shortage reports in this item. You will be required to order your nonfat drink using the name skinny if you want to sound like a pro. All you need to ask the barista is for a skinny latte, and you will receive your nonfat latte.

Both of these products are readily available at Starbucks at any time of the day, any time of the year. For this reason, we get a draw.

Starbucks nonfat milk vs. Whole milk: A comparison Overview

Starbucks nonfat milk-Overview

Starbucks nonfat milk vs. whole milk

Nonfat milk is dairy milk without the fat. The Starbucks nonfat milk is served with any drinks that require milk at 2%. I liked the less fat in this milk, but I also had to deal with the watery taste. When the cream is removed, the milk becomes lighter and can seem watery. On the flip side, you will taste your espresso flavor in all its glory. If you opt for a skinny chai latte, you will taste all the warm spices and enjoy the creamy taste of milk without one overwhelming the other. I was impressed by the less fat and cholesterol in skimmed milk. I could take a venti without any guilt. Starbucks nonfat milk has the least calories among all milk options, including the plant-based. This was a plus for me whenever I wanted to reduce calories in a particular drink. In the end, I loved how well it blended with all the coffee and tea drinks without being overbearing.

What I liked

  • The low-fat content
  • The low calories

What I didn’t like

  • The watery taste

Who it’s best suited for

  • This milk option is best suited for those on low-fat diets

Starbucks Whole milk-overview

Starbucks whole milk

Whole milk is the unadulterated dairy milk that’s available commercially at Starbucks. It comes with all its natural nutrients and ingredients. I liked the whole milk’s full creaminess and thickness in any drink. I also tried it on its own, and the full cream added depth. I do not have allergen reactions, so the milk was just fine for me. I also liked how it toned down the taste of espresso without concealing it in a latte. I realized the reason that this drink is so popular is people still love coffee, but cannot stand the strong Starbucks espresso flavor and require whole milk to tone it down. On the downside, the fat and cholesterol in the milk were present and relatively high. This is not good news for the heart and the general health of the body, and that’s why people are moving away from this milk.

What I liked

  • The thickness and creaminess
  • The toned-down taste in lattes

What I didn’t like

  • The fat and cholesterol content

Who it’s best suited for

  • This milk is best suited for those who are lactose tolerant.

Final Verdict: So, which is better? – Starbucks nonfat milk vs. whole milk

The Starbucks nonfat milk is the better choice here. As much as it is watery and not as thick as whole milk, nonfat milk is a healthy option. Fat and cholesterol can bring health issues and should be taken sparingly. Nonfat milk has the lowest calories among all ilk options and this makes it an excellent choice for all your drinks.


Which is better for you non-fat milk or whole milk?

Nonfat is better for you because it has zero fat and carbs, and also reduced calories.

Between whole milk and non-fat milk, which one goes well with iced drinks?

Whole milk is great for iced drinks because its thickness and creaminess give depth to these drinks.

Is Starbucks whole milk sweeter than non-fat milk?

Yes, the milk has a better fuller taste than nonfat milk.

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