Hot Tea Is Starbucks' Lowest Value Drink. Here's How To Make It Worth It

Starbucks is a reliable choice for many coffee fanatics since the chain boasts over 35,000 stores worldwide per Statista. Caffeine-craving patrons can expect to find a location near them just about anywhere, so the choice to make a quick stop for a latte isn't hard–but choosing what to order might be. With more than 170,000 ways to customize a drink from Starbucks, the options can be overwhelming, via Starbucks Stories. One surefire way to narrow things down is by the price. 

While decadent choices like a caramel macchiato or vanilla bean Frappuccino might set you back a few bucks, hot tea remains one of the most affordable options Starbucks has to offer — and for fair reason. While other drinks require a bit more, say, elbow grease to prepare, hot tea remains as simple at Starbucks as anywhere else — you just need a little hot water and a tea bag. It's why hot tea is Starbucks' lowest-value drink. Still, there's power in that simplicity, and sometimes you are just craving a good old cup of English breakfast. So for those days when you just have to order a hot tea from Starbucks, here's how to make it worth it.

How to upgrade your cup of hot tea

Start by adding in a slice of lemon and a spoonful of honey into your cup, via Simple Loose Leaf Tea Company. Per The Tea Planet, this combination makes for a rich source of antioxidants and creates a lovely harmony of flavors. It's a classic for a reason. But according to Better Homes & Gardens, tea can be a lot more than what you're used to–so let's talk unconventional. 

Per Martha Stewart, it's not uncommon for lovers of fruit teas like hibiscus and raspberry to add fruit juices into the mix. To enjoy it hot, just combine your tea and juice of choice in a pot on the stove for some heightened flavors. One way to spice up green tea is by adding spices like cinnamon and ginger into a slow cooker pot, then letting it brew low and slow for a few hours. Later on, you'll have a concentrated tea chock full of your favorite spices to cuddle up with. Now aside from all the fun additions you can add yourself, let's talk about how to make a hot tea from a cafe like Starbucks truly worth the purchase.

A tea from Starbucks can be worth it if...

Sometimes when you find yourself at a Starbucks, you're just not in the mood for coffee. Or maybe you're just a tea drinker at heart. But as former Starbucks barista Alexa Blay admitted, even if hot tea is your drink of choice, its basic makeup means it's not always worth ordering it out at a cafe, via Insider. While it's not necessarily a Starbucks drink you should avoid ordering at all costs, why pay more when you can make the same thing at home? 

Well, luckily, there is one caveat — if you're taking your tea to stay for a while, then it might make for a good choice. While buying one cup of hot tea isn't the best bang for your buck, Starbucks does free refills on its hot teas purchased during the same visit if you buy with a Starbucks card or app, per Starbucks Customer Service. (And if you don't have a card or the app, you can still purchase a refill at a reduced cost). So if you want to stick around, you can get a few teas for the price of one.