Posted on by Barista Life

Summer Cocktail Recipes

We got your baristas to spill their top-secret drink recipes using only Starbucks drinks, all you have to do is add the alcohol.

Summer 2016 is literally right around the corner.  In preparation, you will be dying to test out some summer cocktail drink recipes to stay refreshed while you're laying out on your day off.  Luckily for you, the baristas from Barista Life know how to stay refreshed with these unique Starbucks drink recipes that you never even knew existed, and yes, they're going to get you drunk. They may not be the healthiest drinks, but we all know that if you drink your calories, they don't count.

So, in a Post on the Barista Life Instagram account, we asked our followers, "What are some of your favorite summer drink recipes?"  We then gathered their input, which contained some of the craziest responses, including simple, yet fruity alcoholic drinks that you can easily make. The best part is, they are all made using standard Starbucks Drinks.


Starbucks does not serve hard alcohol, nor do they condone you adding it to your drink while in the store.  If you're going to try out one of these drinks, do so on your own time.  This list is not endorsed by Starbucks.  Also, some of these beverage recipes contain extra "inclusions" or additions that you will have to pay extra for.  For example, substituting lemonade or refresher juice for water will cost extra.  If you are looking for a refreshing drink recipe and do not want to pay more than the advertised menu price, you may choose to forgo some of the add-ons.  Ask your barista which ones they recommend you go without that won't sacrifice the taste of your beverage!  Also, some of these drinks are quite complicated to prepare, which means they will take a bit longer than usual.  Do not order these drinks if you are in a hurry.  Do not be rude if it takes a bit longer to input the beverage into the register, and please have the recipe ready to give to your barista.  These are not typical menu items, and if you come up with a random name for one, do not just tell your barista your made-up name and expect them to know what you're talking about.

So without further ado, here are the best Starbucks Summer Cocktail Recipes for 2016

BYOB, Starbucks will not provide alcohol, so don't even bother to ask your barista and don't make a joke about it!

1. Strawberry Acai Refresher with Matcha and Malibu Rum Blended!

Strawberry Acai Refresher
The Starbucks Strawberry Acai Refresher is commonly compared to tasting just like a Capri Sun, just with caffeine, and for adults.  Devan suggests adding Matcha Powder and Malibu Rum (not served at Starbucks) to create a refreshing, fruity alcoholic drink, to get your summer buzz going! Submitted by: @devnbratt

2. Vanilla Bean Frappuccino with a shot of Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey

Fireball Whiskey Recipes

This creative, yet intimidating, summer drink was suggested to us by @francescamorra.  If you're looking for Fireball Whiskey Drink Recipes, this is one you should definitely give a shot.  Francesca says that if you order a Vanilla Bean Frappuccino, then you should add a shot, or 2 or 4of Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey, and you'll have a refreshing Starbucks Summer drink to keep you cool, and drunk this summer (if you drink enough of them).  Don't ask your Starbucks barista for Fireball, they won't share it with you.

3. Blended Strawberry Acai Refresher, Substitute Lemonade, add Vodka 

Strawberry Acai Refresher with Vodka

If you're looking for a healthy Starbucks drink, or a fruity alcoholic drink, then this one is right up your alley.  Suggested by @thatonecubjon, this one is a Blended Strawberry Acai Refresher, which when made to standard, is half Strawberry Refresher Juice, and half water.  Ask your barista for no water, and to sub lemonade instead (you will be charged extra for this modification), and for it blended.  Blending refreshers is kind of a pain, so be extremely polite when you ask this!  Then, once you have your beverage, add in your favorite vodka and bam, you now have a refreshing summer vodka cocktail. 

4. Cool Lime Refresher or Strawberry Acai Refresher with Tequila

Cool Lime Refresher Tequila Recipe

Veronica Paet, (@Mamavpaet) came in clutch with one of the best summer drinks we have come across yet, in the form of a tequila mixed drink that will be the best margarita recipe you've heard of yet.  For this cocktail, you need to order a Cool Lime Refresher, No Water, Sub Strawberry Acai Refresher.  Once you get your drink, feel free to add your favorite type of tequila for an easy tequila mixed drink to enjoy by the pool.  Best part about it is, nobody will know there's tequila in your cup, you're just drinking a refresher...remember?

5. Green Iced Tea with Strawberry Acai Refresher, Mango Syrup, & Malibu Rum

Fruity Alcoholic Drinks

This easy summer cocktail was submitted by Cassidy @sassiidy and will surely be one of your favorite Starbucks Summer Drinks you'll ever taste.  Order a Green Iced Tea, and substitute water with Strawberry Acai (you will be charged extra) and add Mango Syrup, which may or may not be available at your location as it is a seasonal syrup. Then, add however much Malibu rum you'd like, and you have yourself a refreshing summer cocktail!

6. Any Starbucks Refresher but instead of Water just do Straight Vodka

Healthy Starbucks Drinks

Submitted by Caitalie, @caitalie, who obviously knows how to party, and we'd have to agree.  If you're looking for things to mix with vodka, Order any Starbucks Refresher with no water.  Then, just add in however much vodka you want (depending on how you want your day to go) and you instantly have a very simple summer vodka drink.

7. Berry Hibiscus Refresher (Or Cool Lime Refresher), Light Water, Peach Syrup, No Berries add Rum

Mojito Summer Drink Recipe

Craving a summer Mojito?  @alixrussell  suggests this easy summer recipe that she swears tastes just like a Mojito.  Order a Berry Hibiscus Refresher (or Cool Lime Refresher), Light water, and add Peach Syrup.  Berries optional. Rum mandatory.

8. Passion Tea Lemonade, Half Pumps of Classic, with Malibu Rum

Best Summer Cocktails

Here is a simple fruity alcoholic drink suggested by @aimee_nash11.  Passion Tea Lemonade, with half the pumps of classic (Tall: 1.5 pumps, Grande: 2 pumps, Venti: 3 Pumps, Trenta: 3.5 pumps) with a strong amount of Malibu rum! She says it's so yummy! You could also do cool lime refresher, but ask for lemonade instead of water!!! Both delicious summer cocktail recipes!

9. Cool Lime Refresher, No Water, Substitute Half Lemonade, Half Strawberry Refresher, add Jose Cuervo

 Refreshing Summer Drinks

One of the most popular Starbucks drinks, the Cool Lime Refresher, is already a refreshing summer drink, but @alliiraee takes the standard recipe, and makes it into a refreshing summer cocktail.  Substituting lemonade and Strawberry refresher will be an additional cost to the price of your beverage, so keep that in mind as you order.

10. Can't beat a Passion Tea Lemonade with Vodka

Things to Mix with Vodka

If you're in search of simple vodka drinks to enjoy this summer, Passion Tea Lemonade seems to be one of the most popular, yet still a simple summer cocktail to stay cool by the pool.  @heathferg25 says you can't beat it, and we at Barista Life would have to say, we agree with Heather.

11. Cold Brewed Iced Coffee, Black, add Kahlua

Easy Summer Drinks

@vagabonddaughter finally suggests an easy summer drink recipe, that isn't a super fruity drink, yet it is still extremely refreshing, and it has caffeine AND coffee.  Cold Brewed Iced Coffee is one of the newer items on the Starbucks Drink Menu and has been growing in popularity in 2016.  Cold Brew is usually brewed over a 20 hour period, using, yep you guessed it, cold or room temperature water as opposed to hot water like iced coffee.  By using this method, you get a much smoother taste that honestly pairs extremely well when Kahlua is introduced to the drink.  It may not be a fruity alcoholic drink, but it is an easy summer drink recipe, or should we say Hair of the Dog 

Barista Life Pro-Tip: Use The Barista Bottle as a cocktail shaker to make all of these drinks!

At a practical 500mL, The Barista Bottle comes with a removable filter which makes it perfect to use as a shaker!  Bring it to the beach with you and enjoy a secret cocktail out of a pretty bottle.  By buying one, you will be supporting your hardworking baristas who wake you up every morning!  3% of Barista Bottle sales are given to a random barista each month via our Tip Jar Program!

Click here to buy yours for $20 & receive free shipping

Barista Bottle Cocktail Shaker

12. 3/4 Lemonade & 1/4 Vodka 

Simple Vodka Drinks

This is probably one of the most simple vodka drinks out there.  Suggested by @samtrottierr, all you literally have to do is order a Lemonade, and then add in vodka for one of the most refreshing summer drinks to sip on while soaking up the sun.

13. Black Tea Lemonade with Whisky

Whiskey Drink Recipes

If you're looking for fruity summer cocktail recipes, we would recommend you to stay away from this recipe submitted by @leaf401, who is more hardcore than the average drinker.  We haven't personally given this summer whiskey drink a taste test yet, but if you like whiskey, tea, and lemonade, this one's for you.  Who knows, it may be one of the best whiskey cocktails you've ever had.  At Starbucks, order a Black Tea Lemonade, then add your whiskey of choice.  We would recommend to stay away from the specialty whiskies such as Fireball and to stick with the standard whiskey choices.  Jack Daniels, Jameson, or Crown Royal would probably be better suited.