Tropical Smoothie Cafe is known for its refreshing fruit smoothies and smoothie bowls made with real fruit. One of their most popular specialty smoothies is the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie. This thick, creamy smoothie is made with peanut butter, chocolate, and banana for a sweet treat in a cup. But is the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie from Tropical Smoothie actually good? Let’s take a closer look at the ingredients, nutrition, taste, price, and popularity of this smoothie to see if it lives up to the hype.
What’s in the Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie?
The Peanut Butter Cup smoothie contains banana, peanut butter, chocolate, and low fat frozen yogurt. Here is the full ingredient list:
- Peanut butter
- Nonfat frozen yogurt
- Chocolate flavor
The base of the smoothie is banana, which provides natural sweetness and a creamy texture. Peanut butter adds protein and that iconic peanut butter flavor. Nonfat frozen yogurt contributes creaminess while keeping the calorie and fat count lower. Chocolate flavor delivers a cocoa taste. And finally, ice makes the smoothie thick and frosty.
Overall, the ingredients are simple and use real, high-quality foods. There are no artificial sweeteners, flavors, or preservatives. The smoothie contains nutritious ingredients like banana, peanut butter, and yogurt. However, it does rely on frozen yogurt rather than fresh yogurt, which reduces the probiotic content. And the chocolate flavor is likely a syrup rather than real cocoa powder. But in general, the Peanut Butter Cup contains wholesome, recognizable ingredients.
Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie Nutrition Facts
One 24 ounce Peanut Butter Cup smoothie from Tropical Smoothie Cafe contains:
- Calories: 540
- Total fat: 15g
- Saturated fat: 4.5g
- Trans fat: 0g
- Cholesterol: 15mg
- Sodium: 180mg
- Total carbs: 93g
- Dietary fiber: 5g
- Sugars: 77g
- Added sugars: 0g
- Protein: 12g
- Vitamin A: 15% Daily Value
- Vitamin C: 45% DV
- Calcium: 25% DV
- Iron: 6% DV
- Potassium: 18% DV
This smoothie is high in calories, carbs, and sugar compared to other Tropical Smoothie cafe smoothies. A 24 ounce Strawberry Bliss smoothie, for example, contains 330 calories, 16g fat, 59g carbs, and 46g sugar. So the Peanut Butter Cup packs in significantly more calories and carbs. However, it’s important to note the serving size difference. The Peanut Butter Cup smoothie is 24 ounces while many others are 20 ounces. Adjusted for serving size, the Peanut Butter Cup has 225 calories and 39g carbs per 12 ounces compared to 165 calories and 30g carbs in 12 ounces of a Strawberry Bliss.
When it comes to nutrients, the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie provides a hefty amount of vitamins A and C. You get 15% of the Daily Value for vitamin A and 45% of the Daily Value for vitamin C in the 24 ounce serving. It also contains decent amounts of calcium and potassium. The fiber content is relatively low at 5g per smoothie.
Overall, while this smoothie is high in calories and sugar compared to other options, it does provide a significant amount of vitamins, minerals, and protein from ingredients like banana, peanut butter, and yogurt.
Taste and Texture of the Smoothie
How does Tropical Smoothie’s Peanut Butter Cup smoothie actually taste? Here’s a breakdown of the flavor and texture:
- Sweetness: This smoothie tastes decadently sweet thanks to the combination of ripe banana, chocolate flavor, and peanut butter. The sweetness level is high but not overpowering. Each sip tastes rich and satisfying.
- Chocolate flavor: You get a nice mild cocoa taste in every sip. It’s not an intense chocolate flavor, but rather a smooth, creamy chocolate note that blends well with the peanut butter.
- Peanut butter flavor: The peanut butter taste comes through distinctly, adding a nutty depth to the chocolate and banana. The peanut butter is creamy without an oily or heavy mouthfeel.
- Banana flavor: The banana adds natural sweetness and a subtle ripe banana flavor in the background. It provides a tropical vibe.
- Texture: This smoothie has a luxuriously thick, creamy, and smooth texture. It’s almost like a melted peanut butter cup in drinkable form. The blend of frozen yogurt, peanut butter, banana, and ice creates a shake-like consistency that’s very indulgent.
Overall, if you like sweet, chocolatey, peanut-buttery treats, you’ll likely enjoy the decadent and satisfying flavor profile of the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie. It lives up to its name by delivering rich peanut butter cup flavor in creamy smoothie form.
Price of the Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie
The Peanut Butter Cup smoothie costs $7.99 for a 24 ounce regular size as of November 2023 at most Tropical Smoothie Cafe locations. Here’s how the pricing breaks down:
- Small 16 ounce: $5.99
- Regular 24 ounce: $7.99
- Large 32 ounce: $8.99
This pricing is on par with other specialty smoothies on the Tropical Smoothie menu. Their basic smoothies made with just fruit generally range from $4.99 to $6.99, while most indulgent signature smoothies cost between $7.99 and $8.99. The Peanut Butter Cup is at the higher end since it’s one of their more premium specialty options.
Compared to other smoothie chains, Tropical Smoothie’s pricing is reasonable but not the most budget friendly. For example, a 24 ounce Peanut Butter Cup smoothie would likely cost between $5-6 at Smoothie King versus $7.99 at Tropical Smoothie. However, Tropical Smoothie frequently offers discounts through text/email signup promotions that can drop the price by $2-3. Overall, while not cheap, Tropical Smoothie smoothies are competitively priced compared to other smoothie chains.
Popularity of the Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie
The Peanut Butter Cup smoothie is one of the most popular specialty smoothies at Tropical Smoothie Cafe. On the Tropical Smoothie website, it has 4.5 out of 5 stars based on nearly 150 reviews, making it one of their highest rated menu items.
Here are some reasons why the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie is so popular:
- It has a delicious and crave-worthy flavor combination of chocolate and peanut butter
- The thick, milkshake-like texture satisfies chocolate and peanut butter cravings
- It’s indulgent yet made with relatively healthy ingredients like banana, yogurt, and peanut butter
- Peanut butter and chocolate is a classic, crowd-pleasing flavor profile that appeals to many different tastes
- It’s customizable – you can ask for extra peanut butter, chocolate, or banana to make it your own
On social media, many Tropical Smoothie Cafe customers rave about the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie and recommend trying it if you haven’t. Its popularity makes it a signature menu item that Tropical Smoothie is known for.
How to Make the Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie at Home
Want to enjoy the delicious Peanut Butter Cup smoothie at home? Here is a simple recipe to recreate it yourself:
- 2 bananas, frozen
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup milk or milk alternative
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- 2-4 tbsp honey or maple syrup to taste (optional for sweetness)
- 1 cup ice
- Add the frozen bananas, peanut butter, Greek yogurt, milk, cocoa powder, and honey/maple syrup (if using) to a high speed blender.
- Blend until smooth and creamy, scraping down sides as needed.
- Add ice and blend again until thick and frothy.
- Pour into a glass and enjoy your homemade Peanut Butter Cup smoothie!
To make it dairy-free, use dairy-free yogurt and milk alternatives like almond or coconut milk. You can also use chocolate protein powder instead of cocoa powder. Top with whipped cream, chocolate drizzle, chopped peanuts, or banana slices for extra decadence.
Is the Tropical Smoothie Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie Healthy?
While the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie tastes indulgent, it is relatively balanced and nutritious for a treat thanks to ingredients like banana, Greek yogurt, and peanut butter. Here are some health benefits of ingredients in this smoothie:
- Banana: Good source of vitamin C, potassium, fiber and antioxidants
- Peanut butter: Provides protein, healthy fats, magnesium, and vitamin E
- Greek yogurt: Excellent source of protein and calcium with probiotics
- Cocoa powder: Contains antioxidants, magnesium, and iron
However, there are some downsides to consider if you are watching sugar, calories, and portions:
- It’s high in natural sugars from the banana, yogurt, and peanut butter
- The calorie count is high at 540 calories for 24 ounces
- Easy to over-consume since the thick texture makes it feel less filling
- May contain artificial flavorings and sweeteners
Overall, in moderation, the Peanut Butter Cup can be part of a healthy diet. But it shouldn’t be consumed in excess or as a meal replacement due to the high calorie, sugar, and carbohydrate amounts. Still, it contains far more nutrition than most milkshakes or ice cream treats.
Does It Taste Better Than Making It at Home?
The Peanut Butter Cup smoothie from Tropical Smoothie Cafe is a delicious treat, but can you get the same tasty flavor by making it at home? Here’s a comparison:
- Smooth, creamy texture: The Tropical Smoothie version often has a smoother, richer texture than homemade thanks to professional blenders and precise ratios. But you can get close at home with a powerful blender.
- Fresh, ripe banana flavor: Both versions taste great when made with optimally ripe bananas. Tropical Smoothie may have a slight edge with perfectly ripened bananas.
- Peanut butter taste: The peanut butter flavor is often stronger and more prominent when you make it yourself and can control the amount.
- Sweetness level: The Tropical Smoothie version packs in more sweetness that you may not be able to replicate exactly at home, but you can adjust to taste.
- Overall flavor: While the Tropical Smoothie Cafe version offers an indulgent, sweet, peanut-buttery flavor, you can achieve nearly the same tasty profile with high quality ingredients at home.
The convenience of grabbing the smoothie already made at Tropical Smoothie versus making it yourself is a major advantage. But flavor-wise, a homemade Peanut Butter Cup smoothie can be just as delicious!
Does It Provide Good Value for the Price?
At $7.99 for 24 ounces, the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie is on the pricier side but offers decent value considering the quality and amount of food you get.
When comparing the price against making a smoothie at home, Tropical Smoothie’s version costs more. But you are paying for the convenience as well as the expertise they put into perfecting the flavors. $8 for a filling 24-ounce treat blended with premium ingredients is not a bad deal for an occasional splurge.
The Peanut Butter Cup smoothie costs around the same or slightly more than other indulgent smoothies at chains like Smoothie King and Jamba Juice. So the pricing is consistent with the specialty drink market. Overall, while not cheap, you get strong value for the money based on the tasty flavor, large portion, and quality ingredients.
Benefits and Drawbacks of the Peanut Butter Cup Smoothie
Here is a quick summary of the main benefits and drawbacks of Tropical Smoothie’s Peanut Butter Cup smoothie:
- Delicious peanut butter and chocolate flavor combination
- Smooth, creamy, milkshake-like texture
- Relatively nutritious ingredients like banana, peanut butter, and Greek yogurt
- Large 24 oz portion is filling and shareable
- Provides protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals
- Fun, indulgent treat appropriate for a snack or dessert
- High in calories, sugar, and carbs for a smoothie
- Easy to overindulge in the thick, sweet drink
- Higher cost than making it yourself
- Contains less nutrition when made with frozen yogurt instead of fresh yogurt
- Potential for artificial flavors, sweeteners, and processed ingredients
Tropical Smoothie Cafe’s Peanut Butter Cup smoothie is a delicious, indulgent treat that combines rich chocolate and peanut butter flavors into a satisfying drink. Made with quality ingredients like banana, Greek yogurt, and real peanut butter, it provides more nutrition than the average milkshake.
The smoothie has a thick, creamy texture reminiscent of a melted peanut butter cup that chocolate and peanut butter fans will love. However, it is high in calories, sugar, and carbs, so moderation is key.
While not the healthiest option on the menu, the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie is an elevated sweet treat perfect for an occasional splurge. The $7.99 price for a 24 ounce serving provides decent value. Tropical Smoothie devotes care into crafting the ideal peanut butter, chocolate, and banana flavor balance.
Ultimately, the Peanut Butter Cup smoothie tastes great and hits the spot if you are looking for an indulgent chocolate and peanut butter fix. Just be mindful of portion size and enjoy it as part of an overall balanced diet.