Sugar has sadly become ever-so commonplace during Halloween and Halloween coffees are the latest trend in scarily sugary products.

Many modern coffees are far from being innocent fun so we’re highlighting some of the coffee house horrors to beware of.

Be wary of Phantoms this eventide

Dark in colour and somewhat dark in spirit is the Starbucks ‘Phantom Frappuccino’. Depending on what size is ordered, this black monster packs the equivalent of between 1 to 2 cans of cola’s worth of sugar.

Anyone considering ordering one of these would do well to consider what this will put the body through. One way to get an idea is to imagine slowly working your way through eating eight cubes of sugar in a row.

Imagine this and you’re also imagining how much sugar a ‘Mini’ Phantom Frappuccino has. Mini in name, not so mini in its sugar content.

Now imagine working through eating 16 cubes of sugar. This is equivalent to having the ‘Venti’-sized ‘Phantom Frappuccino’.

Not long ago, you’d be labelled as having a sweet tooth if you had 2 teaspoons of sugar in your coffee. The fact that coffees these days have four or eight times as much shows how ridiculous certain players in the food and drink industry have become, and how irresponsible to boot.

If you are wondering how the Phantom gets its black colour, it’s from activated black charcoal. The dessert’s drink’s ingredient list is about as long as a witch or wizard’s hat; a vast mixture of different types of sugar, gum, preservatives and some water we’re told.

Orange is the old black?

It’s not just black Halloween coffees we should be wary of.

The PSL, Pumpkin Spice Latte, is an old favourite of many but also a frightfully sugary beverage too.

Scouring the nutritional info, for the many variants of pumpkin spice lattes and frappuccinos, shows that the least sugary variant is a ‘Pumpkin Spice Latte – Almond’ in ‘Short’ size. Even then, the 18g of sugar this drink has is equivalent to four and a half cubes of sugar.

Looking for the highest sugar variant brings us to the ‘Pumpkin Spice Coffee Frappuccino – Oat’. Order a ‘Venti’-sized version and you’re looking at 91g of sugar. That’s 23 cubes of sugar. In terms of calories, this drink-based confection brings in over 2,300 calories. Ouch!

Perhaps PSL also means powerfully sugary liquid?

Addicted to syrup

It is not just Starbucks that is guilty of sugar coating the insides of its customers. Many other coffee brands are following suit. Sugar is addictive and large companies are desperate to compete by feeding that addiction.

Costa, Greggs and other brands are also pushing the trend for drinks with through-the-stratosphere levels of sugar. Costa’s Bonfire Latte and Gregg’s Pumpkin Spice Latte are in a similar league of excessive sugar content.

It’s clearly not just customers who are lured in by addictive syrups, it’s businesses too.

This Halloween tread carefully in coffee shops lest sugar crystallise your soul.


Picture credit: Instagram / Starbucks_ES

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