Is Dunkin Donuts smoothie healthy?

Smoothies have become an increasingly popular menu item at many quick service restaurants like Dunkin’ Donuts. But are Dunkin’ smoothies actually a healthy option or are they just liquid sugar bombs?

The Nutrition Facts

To determine if Dunkin’ smoothies are healthy, we need to look at the nutrition facts. Dunkin’ offers smoothies in a variety of flavors including strawberry, mango, vanilla, and mixed berry. Here are the nutrition facts for a 24 oz. strawberry smoothie from Dunkin’:

Nutrition Facts Dunkin’ Strawberry Smoothie (24 oz)
Calories 440
Total Fat 2.5g
Sodium 200mg
Total Carbohydrate 94g
Dietary Fiber 4g
Sugars 81g
Protein 9g

Right away we can see that the calorie count is quite high at 440 calories for a 24 oz. serving. The American Heart Association recommends limiting added sugar intake to no more than 25g per day for women and 36g per day for men. This smoothie alone contains 81g of sugar, more than three times the recommended daily limit.

Sugar Content

The biggest issue with Dunkin’s smoothies is the exceptionally high sugar content. Most of the sugar in the smoothie comes from added syrups and fruit juices to enhance the flavor. But all of that added sugar turns what could be a nutrient-dense, filling snack into more of a sugary treat.

The strawberry smoothie gets its sweetness from strawberry puree, which naturally contains some sugar, but is then kicked up several notches with the addition of high fructose corn syrup, sugar, and other added sweeteners. Just 1 cup of the strawberry puree contains around 60g of sugar. And with the 24oz smoothie containing nearly 3 cups of puree, you can see how the sugar adds up.

Excessive sugar intake is linked to increased risk of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, fatty liver disease, and tooth decay. While fruit smoothies sound healthy in theory, the added sweeteners make them more of a dessert than a nutritious snack.

Lack of Fiber

Along with the high sugar content, Dunkin’ smoothies lack adequate fiber. The strawberry smoothie provides just 4g of fiber per 24oz serving. The daily recommended fiber intake for adults is 25-30g. So the smoothie is providing just a fraction of your daily needs.

Fiber is important for digestive health, helps stabilize blood sugar levels, lowers cholesterol, and improves satiety from a meal or snack. The whole fruits and vegetables used to make a smoothie naturally provide fiber. But much of the fiber is lost when the produce is blended into a smooth puree. Without adequate fiber, the sugar in the smoothie is more quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, leading to spikes and crashes in energy.

Low Protein Content

Protein is another vital nutrient that is lacking in Dunkin’s smoothies. The strawberry smoothie has just 9g of protein per 24oz serving. To put that into perspective, a single egg contains about 6g of protein. So the entire smoothie has around one and a half eggs worth of protein.

Health experts recommend getting 15-20g of protein at each meal or snack to help maintain muscle mass and keep you feeling full for longer. The smoothie simply does not provide enough high-quality protein on its own to be considered a balanced snack. Adding a source of protein like Greek yogurt or protein powder could help bump up the nutrition.

High Calorie Count

At 440 calories for a 24oz serving, Dunkin’s smoothies are considered a high calorie beverage. To put the calorie count into perspective, here is how the smoothie compares to some other popular beverages:

Beverage Calories (12 oz serving)
Dunkin’ smoothie 440
Starbucks Bottled Frappuccino 190
Coca-cola 140
Orange juice 110

With 440 calories, the 24oz Dunkin smoothie contains more than three times the calories of a 12oz can of Coke. The high calorie count is not necessarily problematic if the smoothie is satisfying and fills you up. But the lack of protein and fiber make it less likely that the smoothie will curb hunger. You could easily drink down 440 “empty” calories without feeling full.

Lack of Healthy Fats

Another area where Dunkin’s smoothies are lacking is healthy fats. The strawberry smoothie provides just 2.5g of fat. Healthy fats are important for keeping you feeling satisfied after a meal or snack. They also help your body absorb fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K. Sources of healthy fats like avocado, nut butters, seeds, coconut and full-fat yogurt or milk can improve the nutrition of a smoothie.

Going back to the nutrition label, we can see the smoothie is low in both mono and polyunsaturated fats. These healthy fats have benefits for heart health, inflammation, memory and brain function.


In terms of micronutrients, the smoothie provides 100% of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin C. This makes sense given strawberries are packed with vitamin C. However, for other vitamins and minerals like calcium, iron, vitamin D, vitamin A, and vitamin B12, the smoothie contains 0-10% of the daily value.

While fruit smoothies do contain vitamins from blended produce, the fiber-lacking liquid format makes them less nutrient dense compared to eating whole fruits and veggies. You would likely get a wider range of vitamins and minerals from eating a balanced whole food meal or snack.

Benefits of Dunkin’ Smoothies

While Dunkin’s smoothies may not be the most nutritious choice, they do have some benefits that make them an appealing option in moderation. Here are some of the positives of choosing a Dunkin smoothie:

  • Convenient. You can grab a smoothie quickly at a Dunkin location when you’re short on time.
  • Tasty. The smoothies feature tasty flavor combinations like strawberry banana and mango pineapple. The sweet flavors satisfy cravings.
  • Fruit-based. The smoothies provide fruit servings and a boost of vitamin C.
  • Vegetarian. The smoothies are dairy-free making them suitable for lactose intolerant and vegetarian diets.
  • Thick texture. The smoothies have a thicker, milkshake-like consistency compared to fruit juices.
  • Customizable. You can customize smoothie flavors and add-ins like vitamins, coffee, or chocolate to make it more nutritious.

Overall the convenience, taste, and customization options may outweigh the less-than-stellar nutrition facts for some smoothie lovers.

Smoothie Add-Ins for Extra Nutrition

While Dunkin’s standard smoothie recipes lack certain nutrients, there are ways to add more nutrition through custom add-ins. Here are some healthy add-in options if you want to boost the nutrition without adding more sugar:

  • Protein powder – Adds protein to help you stay full and satisfy hunger.
  • Ground flax or chia seeds – Provides healthy omega-3 fats and fiber.
  • Nut butter – Gives protein, fiber and healthy fats.
  • Spinach or kale – Packs extra vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
  • Greek yogurt – Adds protein, calcium and probiotics.
  • Hemp seeds – Provides protein, fiber, omega-3s and magnesium.
  • Cinnamon – Can help regulate blood sugar response.
  • Cocoa powder – Provides antioxidants.

Adding just one or two of these nutritious ingredients can transform an overly sugary smoothie into a much more filling, balanced snack.

Best Dunkin’ Smoothie Options

If you are looking for the healthiest smoothie options when ordering at Dunkin’, here are some of your best bets:

Strawberry Banana Smoothie

This classic smoothie combo provides potassium from bananas and immunity-boosting vitamin C from strawberries. Bananas add fiber and thickness as well. Order with nonfat milk and no added sugars.

Mango Pineapple Smoothie

Mango and pineapple give you fiber, vitamin C, vitamin A and manganese. Try substituting coconut milk for more healthy fats.

Mixed Berry Smoothie with Spinach

Packed with antioxidants from mixed berries and added nutrients from spinach. Substitute plain yogurt for the dairy-free base.

Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

Bananas and peanut butter make this smoothie thicker and more filling. The peanut butter provides protein, fiber and potassium.

Vanilla Smoothie with Oats

Add a scoop of oats to any vanilla smoothie order. Oats will provide healthy carbs, fiber and B vitamins.

Smoothie Alternatives to Dunkin’

If you want to indulge in a pre-made smoothie but are concerned about Dunkin’s nutrition facts, there are some healthier alternatives you can look for:

  • Smoothie shops – Places like Smoothie King, Jamba Juice, and local smoothie cafes often have more customization options, including adding whole foods like kale and avocado.
  • Bottled smoothies – Brands like Naked, Odwalla, and Evolution offer bottled smoothies with higher fiber and protein. But read labels since sugar content varies.
  • Make your own – Blend up your own smoothie at home so you can control the ingredients. Add Greek yogurt, nut butter, flaxseeds, etc. to amp nutrition.
  • Whole fruits and veggies – If you want convenience, pre-cut fresh fruits, veggies with hummus, hard boiled eggs, and mixed nuts make easy grab-and-go snacks.

The Bottom Line

So are Dunkin’ smoothies healthy? Unfortunately, most of Dunkin’s pre-made smoothie options are lacking in protein, fiber, and healthy fats compared to their high content of added sugars and calories. This makes them more like a sugary treat than a balanced snack.

However, Dunkin’ smoothies can be part of an overall healthy diet in moderation. Opt for smaller 12-16oz sizes instead of jumbo 24oz smoothies to control calories and sugar. And customize your order with add-ins like proteins, nut butters, and seeds to increase the nutrition.

For the best nutrition, look to smoothie shops, bottled brands, or making DIY smoothies at home. But if you’re craving a Dunkin’ run, stick to the lighter smoothie varieties like strawberry banana and ask for light syrups or all-fruit recipes.

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