Does Starbucks have dairy-free cake pops?

Starbucks is known for its delicious coffee drinks and baked goods. However, with many customers following dairy-free diets, a common question is: Does Starbucks have dairy-free cake pops?

The short answer is yes, Starbucks does offer dairy-free cake pop options. While not all of their cake pops are dairy-free, Starbucks has a few varieties that are made without milk ingredients.

Some key points about dairy-free cake pops at Starbucks:

  • The Pink Velvet and Lemon cake pops are dairy-free
  • Other flavors likely contain milk ingredients and are not dairy-free
  • Ingredients can vary by location, so customers should always check with their local Starbucks
  • Those with milk allergies need to be extra cautious and aware of cross-contamination risks

Below is an in-depth look at what dairy-free cake pop options are available at Starbucks for those avoiding cow’s milk.

What Cake Pops Are Dairy-Free at Starbucks?

After carefully reviewing ingredient lists, there appear to be two cake pop varieties at Starbucks that are dairy-free:

Pink Velvet Cake Pop

The Pink Velvet Cake Pop does not contain any milk ingredients according to Starbucks. It’s made with vanilla cake and pink chocolate chips.

Here are the ingredients listed for the Pink Velvet Cake Pop on the Starbucks website:

Enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), sugar, palm oil, cocoa (processed with alkali), whey powder (milk), palm kernel oil, soy lecithin, vanilla extract, baking soda, salt, artificial flavors, red 40 lake, yellow 5 lake, blue 1 lake, mono- and diglycerides, polysorbate 60, carnauba wax

As you can see, it does not contain any dairy components. The cake batter is made with enriched flour, sugar, oils, and other basic baking ingredients.

This makes the Pink Velvet Cake Pop a good dairy-free choice for those avoiding cow’s milk.

Lemon Cake Pop

The Lemon Cake Pop is another variety that appears to be dairy-free based on Starbucks’ listed ingredients. It contains lemon cake and white chocolate chips.

Here is the ingredient list for the Lemon Cake Pop:

Sugar, enriched wheat flour (wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), water, palm oil, eggs, lemon juice concentrate (lemon juice concentrate, lemon oil), emulsifier (mono- and diglycerides, soy lecithin), vanilla extract, lemon extract, baking powder (sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate, corn starch, mono calcium phosphate), salt, artificial flavor, colored with turmeric and annatto extracts and turmeric.

Like the Pink Velvet version, the Lemon Cake Pop does not contain milk, cream, butter, or any other dairy components. It’s primarily made from flour, sugar, oil, eggs, and lemon flavoring.

This makes it a fitting cake pop choice for vegans and people avoiding dairy.

Other Starbucks Cake Pops Likely Contain Dairy

While the Pink Velvet and Lemon varieties appear to be dairy-free, most other Starbucks cake pops likely contain milk ingredients.

For example, here are a few of the types that probably aren’t dairy-free based on typical recipes:

  • Chocolate Cake Pop – Often contains milk chocolate
  • Salted Caramel Cake Pop – Can contain butter
  • Birthday Cake Pop – Usually made with milk and butter
  • Cookies & Cream Cake Pop – Uses cream as an ingredient
  • Red Velvet Cake Pop – Typically contains cream cheese

Unless Starbucks states otherwise or provides dairy-free ingredient lists, it’s safest to assume most other cake pop flavors contain milk, cream, or butter. Individuals with milk allergies or on a vegan diet should avoid those varieties due to the high chance they include dairy components.

Ingredients Can Vary By Location

While the Pink Velvet and Lemon cake pops appear to be dairy-free based on the ingredients Starbucks lists online, it’s important to note that recipes can vary somewhat between locations.

Factors like availability of ingredients, supplier changes, and seasonal offerings can mean the ingredients aren’t exactly the same at every Starbucks cafe.

So if you have severe milk allergies or intolerances, it’s always best to ask about cake pop ingredients at your specific Starbucks store. Don’t assume the recipe is the same across all locations.

The baristas should have ingredient lists they can reference or a manager they can speak with to confirm if a cake pop contains milk or is dairy-free.

Calling ahead can also help those with allergies prepare and determine if a flavor is safe for them that day. Ingredients can even vary day-to-day within the same store based on stock and deliveries.

Bottom line – always check instead of guessing when it comes to serious milk allergies.

Cross-Contamination Risks

For people with severe dairy allergies, it’s important to be aware of cross-contamination risks when ordering cake pops at Starbucks.

While a cake pop itself may not contain milk ingredients, the potential still exists for contact with milk during the food preparation and service process.

Some ways allergens could get transferred include:

  • Equipment surfaces where milk-containing cake pops were prepared earlier
  • Utensils used to handle multiple cake pops
  • Employee hands that have touched milk ingredients
  • Splattering or spills of milk-based icings/toppings onto a dairy-free cake pop
  • Airborne particles settling onto an otherwise dairy-free cake pop

Cross-contamination may be unavoidable at a busy, high-volume coffee shop like Starbucks that serves both dairy and non-dairy foods simultaneously.

Those with life-threatening milk allergies or sensitivities need to consider this risk and may want to avoid cake pops altogether to stay safest. Or at minimum ask detailed questions about food prep when ordering.

For less severe dairy issues or intolerances, cross-contamination is likely less of a concern. But it’s an important consideration for people who react strongly and quickly to even tiny milk exposures.

Tips For Ordering Dairy-Free Cake Pops at Starbucks

Here are some tips for customers wanting to order dairy-free cake pops from Starbucks:

  • Check the Starbucks app or website for ingredient lists and identify dairy-free flavors
  • Call ahead to your local store and ask specifically which cake pops are dairy-free
  • Ask the barista detailed questions about milk-related cross-contamination risks
  • Order dairy-free cake pops first before other milk-containing items
  • Watch carefully as your order is prepared and served
  • If severely allergic, consider going at off-peak times to reduce cross-contamination chances
  • Notify the employees about any serious milk allergies you or someone you’re ordering for has
  • Consider skipping cake pops altogether if you have life-threatening dairy allergies

Being an informed, courteous customer can go a long way in working with Starbucks to enjoy cake pops while remaining milk-free.

How To Make Dairy-Free Cake Pops at Home

If you want to indulge in cake pops but need to steer clear of milk, making them at home is a great option.

There are plenty of dairy-free cake pop recipes out there. Here is one straightforward approach:


  • 1 box dairy-free cake mix (vanilla, lemon, or flavor of choice)
  • 1⁄4 cup oil or melted coconut oil
  • 1⁄4 cup non-dairy milk like almond milk, oat milk, etc.
  • 1-2 cups dairy-free chocolate chips
  • Lollipop sticks
  • Sprinkles for decorating (optional)


  1. Prepare cake mix as directed, substituting oil or melted coconut oil for butter and non-dairy milk for whole milk
  2. Bake cake in a rimmed baking sheet or pan, checking for doneness around 25 minutes
  3. Allow cake to cool completely, then crumble into a large bowl, removing any hard edges
  4. Line a baking sheet with parchment and lightly grease with oil
  5. Roll heaping tablespoon-sized portions of crumbled cake into balls, placing on the baking sheet
  6. Melt chocolate chips in a microwave safe bowl, heating and stirring at 30 second intervals
  7. Dip the tip of a lollipop stick into the melted chocolate, then insert the stick halfway into a cake ball
  8. Dip the cake pop into the melted chocolate and tap gently against the bowl rim to remove excess
  9. Place back on lined baking sheet and immediately decorate with sprinkles if desired
  10. Refrigerate cake pops until chocolate sets, about 30 minutes

Now you can enjoy dairy-free cake pops in the comfort of your own home! The flavor options are endless depending on the cake mix and chocolate chips you use.

The Bottom Line

While not all Starbucks cake pops are dairy-free, there are some varieties that fit the bill for people avoiding milk. The Pink Velvet and Lemon options appear to not contain any dairy components based on the ingredient information Starbucks provides.

However, ingredients may vary somewhat by location, so it’s always wise for those with milk allergies to check with their specific store. And be aware of cross-contamination risks in a fast-paced coffee shop environment.

Making cake pops at home opens up a world of possibilities for dairy-free flavors. With the right ingredients and a few simple steps, you can whip up allergy-friendly cake pops to enjoy anytime.

So for those wondering “does Starbucks have dairy-free cake pops?” the answer is yes…with a few caveats. Ultimately, some tasty milk-free options are available both at Starbucks and in your own kitchen.

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