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I Tested The Starbucks Oat Milk Latte Hack From TikTok So You Don't Have To

Wallets rejoice!

I don't know if you're aware, but on March 2, Starbucks started serving oat milk as an option for its drinks nationwide, and it was a pretty big deal to people*.

And to celebrate the occasion, they unveiled a new line of non-dairy shaken espressos, one of which is the Iced Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso.

Starbucks

According to Starbs, it's made with "shots of Starbucks Blonde Espresso, shaken with brown sugar and cinnamon and topped with oatmilk."

While that all seems very drool-worthy, it ain't cheap! When I tried ordering it on the Starbucks app, the price was $5.45.

Starbucks/BuzzFeed

I then promptly closed the app and sadly made a pot of coffee at home.

I'm balling on a budget, so wasn't about to spend almost $6 on a latte (sorry). But then, I saw this TikTok from @moeoconnor, who claimed there's a dupe you can buy for less $$$ that's actually exactly the same.

@moeoconnor

#greenscreen exposing starbs because i’m still not over that they discontinued the cloud macchiato #brownsugaroatmilk #starbucks

♬ original sound - Moe

So far, the TikTok's received over 2 million views.

Allegedly, if you make a mobile order on the app and get an Iced Shaken Espresso, sub the 2% milk for oat milk, add four pumps of brown sugar, ask for no Classic sweetener, and add cinnamon powder topping, it's the same exact thing for $2 less.

@moeoconnor / Via tiktok.com

I'm always down to save a little bit of money. Plus, I was curious to know if we were indeed getting played, so I decided to order both drinks to see if they actually taste the same.

Netflix

I ordered my drinks on the app and made sure my shaken espresso dupe matched the instructions in @moeoconnor's TikTok and also the ingredients in the real Oatmilk Latte.

Starbucks/BuzzFeed

And as promised, the dupe did cost less! With an extra $0.70 added for the oat milk substitute, it came to $3.95, while the official Brown Sugar Oatmilk Shaken Espresso cost $5.45.

Starbucks/BuzzFeed

Total savings: $1.50. Hey, not nothing!

When I picked up my order, I made sure that one label said Brown Sugar Oatmilk and the other said Iced Shaken Espresso with the modifications. A part of me was worried the baristas would pick up on my ruse and just give me two Brown Sugar Oatmilk Lattes. Once that was squared away, I got the heck outta there and sped home before the ice could melt.

Shelby Heinrich/BuzzFeed

Since I'd never tried the true oat milk latte before, I tasted it first to create a baseline. My first impressions were that it wasn't as sweet as I would've liked — I'm kind of a sugar fiend — but over time, it really grew on me! The brown sugar flavor started to really come through the more I drank it, and I loved how creamy the oat milk made it, especially with the knowledge that it wouldn't upset my stomach like regular milk.

Shelby tasting the true oatmilk latte with the caption pensively contemplating
Shelby Heinrich/BuzzFeed

Next up, I swished my mouth with some water to cleanse my palate and went in on the dupe. On my first sip, it actually didn't taste EXACTLY the same. I thought it had a much stronger coffee flavor than the original, and the brown sugar taste wasn't quite as prominent. It actually tasted a bit more cinnamon-y from the topping. But after both drinks sat for a bit and their flavors began to meld more, I literally couldn't tell the difference between the two.

Shelby Heinrich/BuzzFeed

Plus, you gotta consider that every drink is going to differ a teeny bit because it's made by actual humans.

TBH, I think this dupe holds up! If you wanna save a bit of money the next time you indulge at Starbucks, grab an Iced Shaken Espresso with these mods so you can enjoy your bougie Oatmilk Latte on a budget!