Thirsty Thursday: Vanilla Iced Coffee

java monster, rockstar coffee, doubleshot vanilla, starbucks drink, ice coffee

Thanks to all my readers for voting. I know the choice was difficult: energy drinks, chocolate milk or iced coffee. But, I believe you are getting the best of all worlds. Notice how coffee has to jump on the energy drink bandwagon and put the word “energy” on their cans. Yeah, of course there’s energy in these drinks, it’s coffee.

But, we also get the delicious flavored dairy akin to chocolate milk out of these drinks. These three contestants are three different drinks rolled into one.

Today was an odd day at the gas station. Full of people in sweatpants and a snot symphony from the guy in line behind me. But first, I had to make my choice of what to review – seeing as lonely Rockstar Roasted Coffee & Energy only had one flavor on display, I gauged my decisions off the Light Vanilla. Starbucks offers a Doubleshot Energy flavor in Vanilla Light, but Java Monster Mean Bean Coffee + Energy only comes in full flavor. But, with the latter having 200 calories, it’s only 100 and 70 calories more than Rockstar and Starbucks, respectively. Not a huge disparity.

Sorry to bore you, but you readers voted the category and I just wanted to clarify my decision-making process to best represent your wishes. I’m a giver, really.

So we have three beverages with some coffee, dairy, sugar and two out of three contain Taurine. I’ve been meaning to look at what exactly comprises our fast food, but I’ve been too distracted by how delicious it is in months past.

Taurine is some naturally occurring acid that is found in the large intestine and constitutes .1% of our insides. The Wiki page makes sure to highlight that, “it’s a major constituent of bile.” Yum! But, it’s supposedly good for your skeletal muscles and blood pressure. Plus, because cats can’t produce taurine naturally, it’s a must-have in their diets. Not sure if you should be topping off the Meow Mix with Rockstar – but I’ll look into it.

Energy drinks that contain taurine supposedly don’t reach therapeutic or toxic levels. However, (according to Wiki) hitting the 2g limit, aka, the amount in this Java Monster, has something to do with psoriasis. I mean, nobody thinks energy drinks are actually good for you, but since we don’t know what long-term effects of these beverages are, I’d say cap your beverage consumption to 1/day to be on the safe side.

PS: This Wiki clearly states that taurine is an acid containing an amino group, but is definitely not am amino acid. It’s a sulfonic acid, which means it lacks the necessary carboxyl to be in the aminos. This sounds right, so somebody correct me if I’m wrong for believing them. Also, please correct WebMD and the Mayo Clinic for calling it an amino acid. Is anybody else completely frightened by supposed medical professionals having a very loose grip on chemistry? I mean, smelling salts, leeches, bleeding, milk consumption … they’re wrong time and again.

java monster, rockstar coffee, starbucks vanilla iced coffee, taurine

Inspired by water ballerinas the world over.

Java Monster Mean Bean Coffee + Energy

I try this first, drink the other two, and make my way back down the line. Whether a starter or dessert, this vanilla coffee option offers that roasted flavor with a more robust vanilla. And, although it has 3 more grams of sugar than the Starbucks (and more than twice as much as the Rockstar), it somehow tastes less sweet. This is probably because it’s not a diet drink and it doesn’t have to make up for the lack of good stuff with fake sweetener.

Rockstar Roasted Coffee & Energy Light Vanilla

Definitely has the lightest taste of all three. A little watered down, perhaps? But with less calories than the Starbucks option and half that of Monster, it’s a great option for those keeping an eye on sugar or their waistline in general. This flavor also happens to be the one without taurine, but plenty of other barely pronouncable ingredients.

Starbucks Doubleshot Energy + Coffee Vanilla Light

This beverage has that unique Starbucks taste – I don’t know if it’s the sweetener or actual flavoring. Although I’ve never had a vanilla frap/latte/iced/ccino, I know this flavor. Not bad but on the sweeter side. I would recommend this as a safe bet for Starbucks afficianados.



Java Monster Mean Bean Coffee + Energy (per can)

Calories 200, 10% DV
Total Fat 1.5g, 2% DV
Sugars 16g

Rockstar Roasted Coffee & Energy Light Vanilla (per can)

Calories 100, 5% DV
Total Fat 1.5g, 2% DV
Sugars 7g

Starbucks Doubleshot Energy + Coffee Vanilla Light (per can)

Calories 130, 6.5% DV
Total Fat 2.5g, 4% DV
Sugars 14g

*These calculations are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, which is indulgent and wholly unrealistic.


5 comments on “Thirsty Thursday: Vanilla Iced Coffee

  1. Fun fact for you: Taurine was originally derived from Ox bile, which is where it gets its name, taurine from “taurus” the bull 🙂 Also, I feel highly caffeinated just reading this.

  2. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I LOVE your concept, I am following!
    Are you by any chance planning a trip to the UK sometime, so you could review some of the stuff over here?

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