Friday, August 30, 2013

Mega Matcha Addiction

My friend Eva recently blogged about a secret drink at Starbucks that is super healthy, tastes good, and costs under a buck.  When I first read her post, I thought it had to be too good to be true.  No way can you order a venti anything at Starbucks for that cheap.  I set out to my nearest store to try it out, and, low and behold, she was right!  This drink really is amazing!

So, on to the details.  The drink is called a Venti Matcha on ice.  You simply ask for three scoops of matcha powder (they use this to make their green tea lattes) mixed with water.  You'll end up with a big green refreshing beverage that tastes a lot like iced tea.  The reason it's so cheap is that they do not offer matcha as a stand alone item on the menu, so instead they just charge for an ice water and then hit the "add matcha" button.  The up-charge at my store is a whopping $.84! You can add in some sweetener or milk if you like (just wait to pour the milk in at the condiment bar so you don't get charged extra), but it is pretty delicious on it's own.
So what makes it so much healthier than green tea?  Well, when you drink matcha, you actually ingest the whole ground up tea leaf as opposed to just the brewed water.  It contains lots of trace elements and is rich in catechin polyphenols.  These compounds contain powerful antioxidants that help prevent cancer, heart disease, and slow the aging process.  It also contains fiber and almost no calories!

I read recently that, in order to ingest enough of the catechin compounds to actually benefit your health, you would have to drink at least three glasses of green tea per day.  Well, I like green tea as much as the next person, but there's no way I am going to squeeze in that many cups on a regular basis.  Fortunately, just one glass of matcha is equivalent to TEN glasses of green tea in terms of it's health benefits and antioxidant content.  Now it is easy for me to get more than enough of these antioxidants on a regular basis.

Needless to say, Eva and I are both hooked on these drinks!
But at least our addiction isn't breaking the bank!

64 comments:

  1. This really intrigues me! I'm going to have to try this out one day! :)

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    1. The reason is addictive is because every tbsp has 40g of sugar. Interesting how people think it is healthy.

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    2. sugar isn't inherently bad for you. it's not interesting...because most people know that with nutrition you take into account all aspects of the food and determine whether it's "healthy" that way. the benefits of matcha tea outweigh the sugar content. with your logic, fruit isn't healthy.

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  2. Does the Matcha powder dissolve all the way in cold water?

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  3. I work at a starbucks and you can have them mix the match a powder in a little hot water first before it's mixed with the cold water

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    1. I usually get the Grande Chai Tea Latte with 2 scoops of matcha. At the store here in NC the Matcha is only 80cents. Thanks for the recommendation..You saved me about $4.52!!! Whoo Hoo!!! Love It

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  4. I also work at Starbucks, and just remember that there is already a hefty amount of sugar in the matcha powder :/

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    1. The Starbucks worker I spoke to said there was very little sugar in the matcha, and that the whole drink probably has less than 10 calories. Ir doesn't taste very sweet, but I will look into it!

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    2. Really? I've never come across a matcha that has sugar in it.

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    3. It's about half sugar. You can ask to look at the packaging it comes in it will have the ingredients

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    4. Matcha only has sugar if added it's not naturally in it.

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  5. I work at Starbucks also. DO NOT TRY THIS

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    1. The first ingredient in Starbucks Matcha is sugar. If you buy real ceremonial grade matcha and put it in water vs. asking for this at Starbucks, they taste almost nothing alike because of all the sugar.

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    2. First off, IT'S NOT LESS THAN A DOLLAR. You get charged for a custom iced tea which is charged like a regular iced tea.
      Also, if you come up with you, "i'm so healthy drinking sugar water and i cheated the system only paying $.84 lololol" attitude, you will ruin your barista's day. They bust ass every day working that job and you want to buy an expensive product (matcha) for only $.84. The reason drinks are priced the way they are is to pay for the barista's labor, the cup, and the store's operations (water, electricity, shipping product, employee insurance and benefits). Add-ons are cheap because they're an additional charge to your drink-labor-storeoperations-benefits cost.
      Please, if you want to pay your barista like they deserve for working as they do, don't insult them by trying to cheat the system with this crap.

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    3. With your logic behind that.. then you should never buy on sale stuff. A coffee at $5 will not go straight towards the barista that made the coffee. Go take a business class before spouting nonsense.

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    4. Okay. To end this debate completely. Corporate has come down on the .80 something matcha water scam. On starbucks.com it instructs guests and its partners to charge any inclusions like matcha for ex into a custom tea with matcha. Regardless of what the guests says. its irrelevant if you found other stores that are doing it. Our store in westchester believes in following what corporate expects us to be doing. Providing quality service one cup at a time at $2 or more for any cup you order at a starbucks. And no, we dont get paid enough in labor for the work we do. Screw the benefits, i want more an hour. I work through my pain. i dont get breaks or a chance to go on vacation. God i need a new job!

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    5. And yes, the healthy "matcha" you order is filled with sugar!!! If i could upload a pic of the bags ingredients on here i would!!

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  7. Definitely agree with the previous! It's not "straight" matcha-about 60 percent sugar. As a nutritionist, I advise to save money and just buy green tea sachets or pure matcha-you can honestly use less at home with water and it would even out more cost-wise.

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  8. I checked some websites, and it looks like the matcha powder has about 25 calories per scoop. Not as light as I thought originally, but still better than a lot of options!
    http://www.fatsecret.com/Diary.aspx?pa=fjrd&rid=877193

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  9. For those are concerned with the sugar content, try the Organic Matcha powder from Republic of Tea. It's claims to be GF, SF, Carb Free and organic. And costs about the same as the Starbucks version per cup. Use a little honey or nectar agave to sweeten and it's a healthier version made at home.
    http://www.republicoftea.com/organic-matcha-powder/p/V00624/

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  10. You should never mix matcha with any kind of dairy product. Matcha is powdered green tea and is incredibly high in antioxidants. When you mix matcha with casein (a protein found in dairy), it binds with the antioxidants and your body is unable to absorb and use them. Also, matcha should not be mixed with water hotter than 115 degrees. The hot water kills the antioxidants. I have tried a lot of matcha powders. My favorite is from www.lightofdayorganics.com. The process she uses for matcha is different than most and her powder is a beautiful green. Most matchas are an olive-brown color due to oxidization (and loss of freshness). I LOVE 1/2 cup soy milk, 1/2 cup apple cider (or other fruit juice), and 1/2 tsp matcha powder. Enjoy!

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  11. I work at starbucks. This is so gross. I had a girl order it after seeing it on Pinterest, so I tried it out, I wanted to like it, but ew. I love our matcha as a latte, or the green tea frappucinno, or hey, even unsweetened green tea. But this was just a no. The matcha never fully dissolves and you get this surprise sip of grittiness occasionally. I'd rather just eat three spoons of matcha, honestly, if we're just doing it for the health benefits. ;)

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    1. Agh that sounded super rude.
      I'm glad y'all like it. :) It's just not for everyone, for sure.

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    2. I work at starbucks && I think it's delicious. Mixed well && you shouldn't get any of those surprises grittiness. Never got a complaint about my drinks when I make it.

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  12. To everyone thinking that this would be healthier for you: the green tea products at Starbucks are actually some of the worst things for you BECAUSE of the Matcha powder. The green tea frappucino has more calories than all of the others, and the latte has a hefty amount as well. So this is basically the reverse of what this is saying. I'd also never drink the matcha powder by itself with water, as it'd be VERY thick. I used to make the green tea latte all the time, until I found out how many calories were in it.

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  13. Worst experience at Starbucks ever! I ordered this drink, explained 3x how to make it, charged $4.00, and two drinks later I still didn't get what I ordered! Never again.

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    1. Many partners have been getting permission from their managers to ring it up as an iced green tea, just made differently. You forget that these baristas need to be paid for their labor, too, and it's not exactly a pleasant experience when you're sitting there mixing together 7 cups of water with matcha in them at a time (We have a regular that comes through the drive-through with that order). The Starbucks you went to got smart, and well, the person running the POS has to do what they're told. That includes ringing it up at the price it should be.

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    2. Because being a barista is hard work,lol. Get over yourself. You make coffee drinks as a job and aren't"entitled" to anything except the min wage you get paid.. if you want to make more money then get a better job instead of complaining that you had to mix water...

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  14. This drink will not cost you only $0.83 or $0.87 cents. I've tried ordering this at 3 different Starbucks locations and each time, they have charged me $3 or more because they can't just straight up sell water and add matcha due to "store policies." They will charge you for a latte or iced green tea then add matcha for the transaction.

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  15. Not trying to be a party pooper but cheap matcha from starbucks uses low quality matcha. As you know low quality matcha is not shade grown and it has higher level of caffeine.

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    1. Agreed. It contains 60 grams of sugar. Might as well drink a can of coke while you are at it.

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  16. I ordered a Venti Matcha for the first time today and think it was great. It tasted very similar to the green tea latte. It may not be super healthy with the 5g of sugar per scoop, but to me, it's much better than filling up on milk (I'm lactose intolerant), the unhealthy soy milk Starbucks uses, or the potentially toxic Tazo tea satchets. No milk, no added syrups, no whipped cream, nothing extra - just the matcha powder and water. I mean, how bad can it really be? Compared to their 50-110 calorie whipped cream? It cost me 88 cents (and that was in Chicago - so I'm not sure how people could have paid $4 for one, I feel like you had a barista that never heard of it). Just sayin'.

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  17. I work at Starbucks and instead of mixing with water, I eat the scoops straight. Just ask the barista to put a few scoops into a for-here hot cup and then swallow the powder without chewing in any way. It's full of antioxidants!

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  18. There’s no point of starting taking a supplement if you don’t stick with it. I am about to start with Green supplements which many sites had claimed as a great product to get into shape with.

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  20. I like Starbucks less and less every time I go.. I hate that the matcha powder has so much sugar mixed into it. I used to get the green tea frappuccino with soy milk, but Starbucks only carried vanilla soy milk with tons of sugar in it at the time. That mixed with the sugar already in the matcha powder(never get the sweetener added, you have to tell them no sweetener or simple syrup), you might as well be drinking soda. Now they have the coconut milk which is way better, barely any sugar in it, but still too much sugar in the matcha powder(I want more matcha powder, but the sugar comes already mixed into it). I bought my own matcha and make my own drinks now. Way better. I don't feel like crap after drinking it.

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  21. I tried ordering this today. After explaining at the drive-thru to 3 baristas, including the manager, he still handed me an iced green tea latte at the window. When I told him it was wrong and again, explained what I wanted, the entire staff stood around the drive-thru window agape. He finally made it right, and rudely told me he could only charge me $0.84 and "The correct way to order this," he said, "is a venti cup of iced water with 3 scoops of matcha powder." I swear Starbucks gets worse everday!!!

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    1. They probably get tired of cheap jerks finding ways around paying full prices for a drink. Not only do you run up the drive-thru times trying to get across what weird concoction you want, but then you complain because you want to pay under a dollar for you drink. Cheap cheap cheap. At least gave the courtesy to come inside for this bs. Hope your children think the world revolves around them too.

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    2. How rude are you to call this person "cheap". Not everyone wanted to drink that sugary crap that starbucks is known for! FYI I order mine at the drive-thru and I pay 4 dollars for it

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    3. I'm sorry but after reading what you have written it sounds like the problem was your fault. Above it literally reads, "You simply ask for three scoops of matcha powder (they use this to make their green tea lattes) mixed with water." This is also what you were told to ask for after you had them remake it several times. I'm not sure what you asked for, but the fact that the barista explained you should ask for the exact drink this article tells you to ask for leads me to conclude that you originally and continually asked for it some other way aka the wrong way.

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  22. Is matcha powder only bad for you bexause of the sugar?? I don't mind the 75 calories if i am also getting the benefits of the matcha... if there is more to than a sugar issue then that makes sense to not drink it but from what i read, if matcha has all the antioxidants, metabolism boosting, energy benefuts, etc than for 75 calories, a large venti is better than a small coke from mcdonalds.

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    1. Only the one at Starbucks. Buy the authentic stuff, it has no calories and no sugar unlike Starbucks which has 60 grams of sugar and 100 calories. I buy mines on Amazon, it is pricey but worth the price.

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    2. what brand do you buy from Amazon?

      Thank you

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  23. How much caffiene does this have?

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  24. I just went to Starbucks in NYC and got a tall iced water with one scoop of matcha for $0.87. It does work!

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  25. I used to order my matcha water very simply, just 4 scoops matcha in water. That's it. Now that they are charging $2.50 for the Matcha water, you better believe I am going to act like every other Starbucks snob, 4 scoops matcha mixed in 4 teaspoons of hot water, but not above 115 degrees, then add room temp water, followed with ice, then blend it. Now you can have your $2.50

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    2. I work at Starbucks. We dont have a way to serve room temp water. We have hot water tap, it is 200 degrees. We have a cold water tap. We can only adjust the temp of a beverage in a steaming pitcher. You sound so rude, Btw! Goodness..

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  26. Please stop with the Barista needs to be paid for his labor. That Barista is making the same amount of money per hour when he is mixing a Frappe whatever or a Matcha water. Oh, and if you call mixing drinks in a Starbucks, labor, you are delusional. Now shut up and make my drink. #firstworldproblems #matchacult

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  27. This week Starbucks corporate released information on how to CORRECTLY ring in this drink. Everyone will be charged for a custom iced tea ~$3-$4 when ordering a matcha water. I would also agree with everyone saying the sugar content is pretty high, and you'd be better off buying loose leaf matcha and making this drink yourself, since you can control the sugar content. And to anonymous above, that's now how our labor works. We earn more labor for making fraps than we do for making a water. Everything is accounted for.

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  28. With all the blogging and blabbing about it, corporate has indeed change the policy, I paid around $3 for it now. I won't be ordering that again! I was getting it for .80 cents almost everyday all year and yes I did feel like I cheated the system but I would tip the barista very well. Now I will just put that almost $300 I paid to Starbucks and make my own! They have great matcha powders available at Japanese stores for a very good price, and it will not be sugar laden like the Starbucks one!

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  29. This has got to be the most horseshit argument ever. Tipping a barista? Where does this happen? Where does misspelling a name and yelling it out while leaving it there after preparing something count as insuring proper service? You prepare (overpriced) coffee! And yes it costs $4 now, *THEY KNOW* and so from now on I'll just buy black iced coffee.

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  30. Very nice post, impressive. its quite different from other posts. Thanks for sharing.

    justeat coupon code

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  31. With such extremely high antioxidant activity, it's logical to conclude that Matcha green tea may be highly beneficial in protecting your body from health concerns posed by free radicals.

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  32. Hi. You are inspiring. Keep living healthy! I need to second a comment posted before. The matcha from starbucks is loaded with sugar. The bag it comes in, actually states that it is "sugar with Matcha." Id look up purchasing only ceremonial grade from Japan. You can buy that from Encha.
    Also, Matcha has 30x more lead content than other teas. It is recommended to have no more than 2 cups per day.

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  33. What I know about Matcha is that it helps to improve your focus and makes you smarter.

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  34. Pretty interesting post. What do you think about this green tea reviews ?

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  35. Teavana Matcha Green Tea, used at starbucks, has 10 calories and no sugar.

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  36. Not healthy because Starbucks matcha is mostly sugar. Added sugar like this is a modern day killer (literally). Watch @ThatSugarFilm.

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