What are the Lines on Starbucks Cups?

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Starbucks baristas manage to make perfect drinks all day long, with consistently delicious taste. And while they are undoubtedly masters at what they do, Starbucks cups help them too.

Like other Starbucks customers, you may have seen the Starbucks cup lines measurements and wondered what they mean. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about lines on Starbucks cups!

What are the Lines on Starbucks Cups?

Lines on Starbucks cup

Image credit: Angelica Reyes, Unsplash

The lines on Starbucks cups are measurements, so baristas know how much of each ingredient they will need to add.

On a Venti cup, the bottom line measures 8 ounces of liquid. The middle line measures 12 ounces of liquid, the top line measures 16 ounces of liquid, and the space behind the top line is for ice.

If you want to know what do the lines on Starbucks cups mean and how they help baristas make drinks, read on. We’ve done some research and put together some information for you.

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What do the Lines on Starbucks Cups Mean?

Sunset drink ingredients

If you think the lines on Starbucks cold drink cups look like the lines on a measuring cup, you’re right.

The Starbucks cup lines on cold drink cups mark measurements in fluid ounces and help baristas make drinks by measuring ingredients.

The lines on the cold cups tell the barista how much to add of each ingredient, for example, Sunset drink ingredients, and how much space to leave on top for ice.

The bottom line marks 8 fluid ounces, the middle line marks an additional 4 fluid ounces, and the top line marks an additional 4 fluid ounces.

The extra space that is always left free at the top is to make room for ice, which is filled all the way to the top. Liquid ingredients cannot be poured beyond the third line from the top.

A Venti hot drink has 20 ounces of liquid, but the Venti cold actually has 24 ounces of liquid, to allow enough room for the ice to melt. Thanks to the lines on the cups, baristas know exactly how much of each ingredient to add to drinks.

Venti Starbucks Cup Lines Measurements

Starbucks Venti cold cups are the only ones with full 8, 12, 16 and 20-ounce lines. These lines help to measure the amount of coffee, dairy, ice, and other ingredients for each drink.

For example, to make an iced coffee, the barista fills the cup with coffee to the second line, then adds cream or milk to the third line.

For iced tea, the cup is filled with tea to the first line, then lemonade or water is added to the third line, while the remaining space in the cup is used for ice.

To make frappuccinos, the milk and coffee or cream base are poured to the first line before the other ingredients are added.

There is a specific recipe for each drink and baristas are expected to know all the recipes as part of their training. So that all drinks ordered are prepared as accurately as possible.

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Lines on Reusable Cups

You may have noticed that your Starbucks reusable cup has the same three lines as cold cups. However, unlike cold cups, these lines are not for convenience but for the authentic Starbucks cup look.

This is because when you bring a reusable cup into the store, the barista does not use it to make the drink. Instead, the barista makes you a drink behind the counter and then pours it into the reusable cup, which is still sitting on the counter.

However, it’s a good decision to bring a reusable cup to preserve the environment and avoid waste. Plus, Starbucks offers a small discount on your drink if you bring your own reusable cup.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Only Two Lines on Trenta Cup?

Trenta cup has only two lines and is only suitable for iced coffees, refreshers, and teas. These beverages are relatively easy to make and require only two lines of measurement.

What if Starbucks Baristas did not Follow the Printed Cup Lines?

If all drinks were mixed in bulk and poured without standard measurements and lines, the beverage’s taste, color, and other properties might not meet strict Starbucks standards and customer expectations for standard drink orders.

With the help of the lines, baristas should be able to replicate the promised beverages precisely and consistently every time.

Bottom Line: Lines on Starbucks Cup

So what are the lines on the Starbucks cups? The Starbucks cup lines on cold drink cups aid in ingredient measurement. The three black lines indicate how much of a particular ingredient should be added to a drink. Furthermore, the upper line indicates the amount that should be poured into the cup.

The lines on Starbucks cold cups are there to help the barista make beverages like frappuccinos. The markings on the cup help baristas pour the right ingredients and leave enough space for ice.


Featured Image Credit: Airiz

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