Starbucks strawberry acai refresher is one of its most popular cold options. However, sometimes you don’t want to hit up your local barista to make one for you. If you’re interested in making your own refresher at home, it only takes a few ingredients to mix up this delicious drink for yourself.
Below you’ll learn everything you need to know to recreate Starbucks iconic strawberry acai refresher at home. Keep reading to learn about what goes into these juice combo drinks and how to make one better than your barista ever could.
What is a Strawberry Acai Refresher?
This popular drink isn’t really tea, and isn’t really coffee. It’s a cold, refreshing, fruity drink that has a bit of caffeine provided by powdered green coffee bean extract.
According to Starbucks,
Sweet strawberry flavors accented by passion fruit and açaí notes, caffeinated with green coffee extract—a welcoming sweet spot of refreshment.Starbucks
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Strawberry Acai Refresher Ingredients
To make your own version of this Starbuck’s favorite, there are a few ingredients and tools you need to get together. Keep in mind that the higher the quality of your ingredients are, the better the refresher will ultimately taste.
Unfortunately, I didn’t have any of these ingredients on hand so I had to buy them. And they’re kind of expensive. But if you really love this drink and plan to make a strawberry acai refresher at home a lot, it’s probably worth it. Otherwise, I’d probably just pop into my neighborhood Starbucks and buy one when I have a yen for this cold and fruity drink.
Here are the ingredients you need to make a strawberry acai refresher like the one at Starbucks. I’ve linked to the ingredients I bought on Amazon so you can see just what I used to make mine:
- 3 tablespoons freeze-dried strawberry powder
- 1 tablespoon freeze-dried acai powder
- 3/4 teaspoon green coffee bean powder (adjust for preferred caffeine level)
- 1 tablespoon passion fruit puree (add more to taste)
- 2 1/2 cups white grape juice (not apple juice! – this is important!)
- 3 cups water
This recipe will make about 3 grande drinks, so you can refrigerate the rest and enjoy another day. Just make sure you shake the refrigerated drink well before you pour over ice, because the powders will settle.
Along with these ingredients, you’ll also need:
Strawberry Acai Refresher Copycat Recipe Directions
- Add the dry ingredients to a pitcher. Use the whisk to mix them up. Add enough water to make a watery paste, breaking up any powder chunks.
- Add the rest of the water, grape juice and passion fruit puree to the pitcher and shake or mix well.
- Pour over ice.
- Refrigerate remaining drink. Shake well before serving again.
Variations on Starbucks Strawberry Acai Refresher
One of the major benefits of making a copycat of Starbucks refresher at home is choosing your own high quality ingredients. Another advantage is that you can add some additional ingredients of your own to make a variation on the drink. Here are just a few ways you can switch up your strawberry acai refresher for some new flavors:
Strawberry acai refresher with lemonade:
In this variation, replace the water in the recipe with lemonade instead. This gives the refresher a stronger tart citrus flavor that pairs well with the strawberry.
Pineapple strawberry acai refresher:
To give your strawberry acai refresher a smooth tropical flavor, add a pineapple infusion made with pineapple tea instead of just plain water. This also allows you to take advantage of some of the health benefits of pineapple, such as enhanced mood and weight loss.
Mango strawberry acai refresher:
If passion fruit isn’t your favorite, try replacing the passion fruit puree with a different fruit puree such as mango. This can subtly change the flavor without overhauling the entire profile of the drink.
Mango dragonfruit refresher
While not a twin sister of the acai refresher, the mango dragonfruit refresher is a close cousin. You can find the recipe for a Starbucks copycat mango dragonfruit refresher here.
Coconut “pink drink”:
Adding coconut milk to the recipe instead of water can give it a pleasing bubblegum pink color and a smooth mouthfeel, which Starbucks calls a Pink Drink. The flavor of the coconut pairs well with strawberry and passion fruit, too.
These are only a few of the ways you can riff off the original copycat strawberry acai recipe to make it your own. If you’re a fan of blueberries, watermelon, or any other kind of fruit, you could try substituting some of the strawberry flavoring for something else. You could also replace the green coffee bean extract with a matcha green tea powder to change things up.
Is Strawberry Acai Refresher Good for You?
Strawberry acai refreshers are one of the healthier options you can get for your morning drink whether you order them from Starbucks or make your own copycat version at home.
Strawberries and acai are both known for being full of essential minerals and nutrients that enhance your health. The caffeine in the green coffee bean extract is gentle enough to promote focus without causing the jitters.
Passion fruit puree can be high in sugar, so don’t go overboard on this ingredient if you’re trying to keep your refresher light. You’ll also want to avoid adding other sweeteners too if you’re trying to avoid a bunch of excess calories. As long as you follow this advice, your refresher will provide more health advantages than drawbacks.
How Much Caffeine Does the Strawberry Acai Refresher Have?
A grande-sized strawberry acai refresher from Starbucks has 45 milligrams of caffeine in it. Compare this to a grande-sized coffee, which contains a whopping 330 milligrams of caffeine.
This lower caffeine means that if you’re someone who is susceptible to becoming jittery after a coffee, the refresher is probably a better option for you. Everyone processes caffeine differently, and some people process it more effectively than others.
To make the caffeine in the strawberry acai refresher even more friendly for those who are sensitive to it, replace the green coffee bean extract in the drink with green tea instead.
The same amount of green tea contains only 25 milligrams of caffeine, and the caffeine in green tea is less bioavailable than in coffee, making it hit you more gradually and less intensely than the caffeine in coffee.
Another refresher menu item that uses green coffee bean extract is the Very Berry Hibiscus Refresher. Click the link to see my copycat recipe for this popular discontinued drink.
Strawberry Acai Refreshers Are A Delicious Substitute for Coffee
If you want access to Starbuck’s strawberry acai refreshers but you don’t want to pay five dollars or more at the coffee shop every day, picking up the bulk ingredients to make this drink at home can save you money and net you some health benefits in the bargain. Make your own strawberry acai refreshers and you’ll be getting a vitamin boost with every sip you take.
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