flat white coffee on a table with a croissant, glass of water and a latte

We had a question on the Facebook Q&A about how you can eat healthily in coffee shops.

It made me curious about how many calories are actually in the coffees and treats we go for when we are in coffee shops? So I thought I’d do some research so I can give you some practical advice about what to go for.

You can easily find the nutritional information for most high street coffee shops online. I thought I’d check out Costa Coffee.

And boy did I get a shock!

Before I get into recommending healthy options, did you know there are 593 calories in a slice of their carrot cake?! That’s more than most meals!!!

Some of the other surprises were the chocolate tiffin that’s 460 calories. And the fruity caramel crispy bites that are 536 calories!!

In terms of drinks it wasn’t a huge shock that the hot chocolates came out on top. But did you know a medium hot chocolate with marshmallows, whipped cream and whole milk is 481 calories?! Pair that up with a slice of carrot cake and you’re over 1000 calories!!!!

So what about if you’re in somewhere like Costa and want to try to be as healthy as possible?

In terms of being as healthy as you can be, the key is to go for the lower calorie options. What I thought might be useful would be to give you some ‘best case’ options and some ‘still quite good’ options.

Best Case Options for treats and snacks

The lowest calorie snacks on the menu are bananas (51 calories), and apples (43 cals).

Now if you want to have something a bit more ‘treaty’ with your coffee, other low calorie options are; mini shortbread bites (52 cals), mini muffins (75 cals), almond biscotti (77 cals), and a mini pecan pie (113 cals).

Still quite good options for treats and snacks

The yoghurt with raspberry and strawberry compote is 173 calories, the banana loaf is 262 cals, and the chocolate cornflake crunch is 289 cals.

Obviously these are higher calorie choices than the options above but still a lot less than the ridiculously high calorie carrot cake etc!

What about drinks?

As it’s winter I didn’t bother with the iced drinks, and just looked at the coffees most people go for.

If you’re trying to be absolutely the best you can then you can’t go wrong with an Americano with no milk, a medium one of these is just 8 calories. Add skimmed milk and its still only 18 calories.

In terms of other popular coffees, whether you go for skimmed or whole milk makes a big difference so it might be worth specifically requesting skimmed milk with your coffee:

Flat White with skimmed milk (76 cals), with whole milk (153 cals)
Medium Cappuccino with skimmed milk (90 cals), with whole milk (168 cals)
Medium Latte with skimmed milk (133 cals), with whole milk (207 cals)

If I didn’t mention something you normally have, or you’re curious to check this out, you can see the nutritional information for the entire Costa Menu at:

http://www.costa.co.uk/nutrition/Costa-ANI-data-January-2017.pdf

If you found this helpful please let me know, and if you think it’ll help someone else feel free to share it.

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