The Starbucks menu is a barrage of sugar and cream, inundated with additions to an already stacked menu of caffeinated drinks.
According to the coffee giant, there are a staggering 170,000 drink options and customizations available at Starbucks outlets.
One of the newer add-ons dominating the Starbucks cold coffee drink menu is ‘sweet cream cold foam’. This fluffy, easy-to-make cold foam floats on top of your cold brew coffee like a sweet, creamy cloud.
If you’re a creamy, cold coffee fan, we have a treat for you— here’s how to make copycat Starbucks vanilla sweet cream cold foam right there at home.
What is Sweet Cream Cold Foam?
Sweet cream cold foam is a Starbucks cold drink topper. It’s just like the foam you’d find on a Starbucks cappuccino coffee. Only this is a cold, sweet version.
Hot foam is made using milk and steam. As the steam works its way through the milk, the barista allows tiny amounts of air in, simultaneously heating and aerating the milk.
The principle of cold foam is the same. But rather than using steam, we use a frother to force air into the milk, creating cold foam.
Because sweet cream cold foam contains a fair amount of air, it stays suspended at the top of cold brew drinks. As the drinker sips their beverage, they are getting a little coffee, as well as a little of that sweet cold foam.
What Is Vanilla Sweet Cream?
As to not be too mysterious, vanilla sweet cream is precisely what it sounds like— sweet cream flavored with vanilla. Ok, got it. But let’s get into a little more detail.
The recipe for vanilla sweet cream will vary from place to place, but most contain ingredients like cream, milk, and vanilla syrup. It’s a recipe similar to vanilla creamer.
Some might use half and half, some might even add a little condensed milk, but you get the idea. Sweet, vanillary cream with lashings of vanilla coffee syrup.
Starbucks vanilla sweet cream is usually added to cold drinks. Iced long blacks, cold brew, and nitro cold brew are a few of the most popular options to dunk a little vanilla sweet cream.
Vanilla Sweet Cream VS Cold Foam
Cold foam is designed to sit at the top of the drink, floating on the surface. As you take a sip of your tasty cold brew, you also get a little of that sweet cold foam in there too. It’s not intended to blend into the drink.
Vanilla sweet cream, on the other hand, is made to blend. Pour it into a glass of cold brew, and it’ll cascade down, spreading throughout the drink.
Stir it, and it’ll mix in thoroughly. Try and get vanilla sweet cream to stay at the top— it’s not going to happen.
Calorie-wise, cold foam is the lighter of the two. Depending on the recipe, cold foam might just be milk and some sweetener.
The foamy texture makes it feel more luxurious than its mere 30 calories imply. Coming in at over triple the calories, vanilla sweet cream goes right to the ‘sometimes’ foods list.
Starbucks Sweet Cold Foam
Starbucks run a few different versions of sweet cold foam. Because it’s essentially just foamed cold milk or cream, you can pick any ingredients for the recipe.
Starbucks does a cascara cold foam, which according to them, is a blend of milk, cascara (coffee cherry) extract, and vanilla syrup.
These ingredients will add a brown sugar and maple kind of vibe to the sweet cold foam, as advertised by Starbucks.
As well as cascara cold foam, we also find a more standard recipe, made with simple vanilla syrup and 2% milk, and a vanilla sweet cream cold foam, which we’ll get stuck into shortly.
Why is it so popular?
These layered Starbucks drinks always get loads of attention on socials such as Insta and Tik Tok.
The distinct separation between the cold coffee and the cloud of sweet cold foam makes for a nice photo op.
The days of whipped cream and rainbow sprinkles are done! Now It’s all about the layers of cold foam!
How does Starbucks make cold foam?
Starbucks uses 2% milk for its cold foam recipe. The barista pours the cold milk into a purpose-made frother, similar to a blender but without the blades.
For flavored versions, the barista will add the coffee syrups and other ingredients for flavored versions before foaming them all up.
Starbucks Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew Coffee
We have two different things here to break down— cold brew coffee and vanilla sweet cream. If you are a regular Sip reader, you’re probably familiar with how to make cold brew.
We’re grinding up some beautiful beans, throwing them into a container with water, and letting them steep for up to 24 hours. This will create a rich coffee concentrate, perfect for drinking cold over ice.
Next, we need some vanilla sweet cream. For this, we’ll take some heavy cream, and to that, we’ll add vanilla syrup. Again, pretty easy.
As opposed to sweet cold foam, we don’t need to do any foaming here. Just some simple vanilla flavored cream is all we need for this one.
A vanilla sweet cream cold brew coffee is a combination of these two elements. The vanilla sweet cream is poured over the coffee in the glass, allowing the cream to sort of marble its way through the drink until stirred.
How to Make Copycat Starbucks Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Foam
Our Copycat Starbucks vanilla sweet cream cold foam gives the luxurious taste of vanilla cream, but with the insane texture of sweet cold foam.
If you are a fan of either Starbucks offerings, you’re going to love this recipe.
The method for this copycat vanilla sweet cream cold foam recipe is the same as when making regular cold foam. All we need to do is adjust the ingredients list.
When making cold foam, we just use milk for the recipe. But for vanilla sweet cream cold foam? You guessed it, we’ll use cream. We’ll also add vanilla syrup and some 2% milk.
The type of vanilla you use for this recipe doesn’t matter too much. Just a simple vanilla syrup or even vanilla extract is perfect.
You can use an electric milk frother, an immersion blender, a french press, or a mason jar as far as frothing goes. It’s totally up to you
- 6 tablespoons vanilla syrup
- 1/2 cup 2% milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- Electric frother, immersion blender, french press, or mason jar
Combine the Ingredients
Combine all your vanilla sweet cream cold foam ingredients in a jar or other sealable container.
We want the jar to be sealable so we can save whatever we don’t use for another day. Give the milk, cream, and syrup a little mix to combine everything.
Froth the Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Foam
Our goal here is to get the cream to a texture close to melting ice cream. We want the bulk of it to stay suspended on the surface of our coffee drinks, so we do need a decent amount of aeration.
Add around a 1/2 cup of vanilla sweet cream to your choice of foaming device. Any of the following are solid choices:
- If you are using the mason jar method, add your vanilla sweet cream, screw on the lid and shake it like a maniac.
- If you are using the French press method, add your vanilla sweet cream, insert the plunger and pump it up and down quickly and repeatedly.
- If you are using the immersion blender or electric milk frother method, add the vanilla sweet cream to a pitcher and froth until you’re happy.
Serve Your Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Foam.
Throw a few ice cubes in a glass or cup, add half cold brew coffee concentrate and half water. Make sure you leave a couple of inches of space at the top for the vanilla sweet cream cold foam.
Spoon the vanilla sweet cream cold foam over your coffee drinks. Some of the cream will naturally sink, blending with the coffee, but most will sit on top like fluffy whipped cream.