Is The Hot Chocolate In Costa UK Vegan?

As of November 2021, Costa Coffee’s hot chocolate is indeed vegan. However, strict vegans (and those with dairy allergies or intolerances) may need to be wary of the small chance of cross-contamination.

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Vegan Options at Costa

Like many modern coffee shops, there is ample vegan options available. At present, the list of vegan drinks at Costa Coffee are as follows:

  • Flat White
  • Americano
  • Latte
  • Cappuccino
  • Cortado/Caramel Cortado
  • Espresso
  • Macchiato
  • Mocha
  • Mocha Cortado
  • All the Tea and Tea Infusions
  • Chai Latte
  • Hot Chocolate
  • The Mango and Red Berry Fruit Coolers
  • Peach Iced Tea
  • Strawberry Tea Infusion
  • Iced Lattes (made with plant-based milk with a Monin syrup)
  • Cold Brew (without the topping)
  • Iced Americano
  • Coffee Frostino. This can have an additional Monin syrup shot added to it.
  • Costa’s Mint Frostino syrup is vegan. Just be sure to order it without cream or chocolate sauce/sprinkles and with dairy-free milk
  • Costa’s Strawberry Frostino syrup is also vegan. Again, order without cream and with your choice of dairy free milk.
coffee with frothed milk design

These are vegan if ordered as is or are substituted with plant-based milk. The plant-based milk options available at Costa are:

  • Soya
  • Coconut
  • Almond
  • Oat (gluten-free)

Costa even offers a fairly wide variety of vegan food, including:

  • Vegan Macaroni Cheese
  • Vegan BBQ Chick’n Panini
  • Vegan Smokey Ham and Cheeze Toastie
  • Rocky Road Slice
  • BOSH Chocolate Pecan Slice
  • Jamaican Ginger Loaf Cake
  • Brown and white toast (make sure to ask for dairy free spread), plus the toasted teacakes
  • Oink Vegan Bacn Bap
  • Impulse Gingerbread cookie, seasonal designs
  • Fruity Flapjack
  • Apple Crumble Flapjack

(Please note: some of these items may only be available during the festive period or at select branches only.)

Who is Costa?

Costa Coffee is a British coffeehouse chain and was founded in London in 1971 by two brothers by the name of Bruno and Sergio Costa. It initially started as a wholesale operation, supplying roasted coffee to caterers and specialist Italian coffee shops.

It was sold in 2019 to The Coca-Cola Company in a deal worth £3.9bn, and has grown to 3,401 stores across 31 countries and currently holds 18,412 employees. 

The business has 2,121 UK restaurants, over 6,000 Costa Express vending facilities and a further 1,280 outlets overseas, including 460 in China.

Costa is the second largest coffeehouse chain in the world, and the largest in the UK.

Homemade Vegan Hot Chocolate

hot chocolate in a mug with marshmallows

Eating out and ordering takeaway hot drinks can be expensive, and if done on a regular basis can make a significant dent in our finances! So with this in mind, why not invest in a good thermos and make your own vegan hot chocolate to take with you on chilly winter mornings?


  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or milk of choice)
  • 1 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp dairy-free semisweet chocolate (chipped/chopped)
  • Sweetener of choice (sugar, stevia, maple syrup)
  • 1/8 tsp peppermint extract (optional)
  • Coconut whipped cream (optional, for topping)

Prep Time:

  • 5 – 10 minutes.


  • Add your almond milk to a large mug and microwave for 1 minute. Alternatively, add to a saucepan over medium heat.
  • Once milk is warm (don’t overboil), add your cocoa powder, chocolate and sweetener and whisk to combine.
  • Put back in microwave or continue cooking on stovetop until completely combined and has reached your preferred temperature.
  • Taste and adjust sweetness as required.
  • Lastly, add in your extract of choice (if you have opted for this). Stir, and top with coconut whipped cream.
  • Enjoy!

Nutritional Value of Homemade Vegan Hot Chocolate (Per Cup)

  • Calories 49.2
  • Total Fat 2.4 g
  • Saturated Fat 1.3 g
  • Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
  • Monounsaturated Fat 0.8 g
  • Cholesterol 0.0 mg
  • Sodium 5.4 mg
  • Potassium 268.1 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 10.6 g
  • Dietary Fibre 6.3 g
  • Sugars 0.6 g
  • Protein 3.3 g
  • Vitamin A 0.2 %
  • Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
  • Vitamin B-6 1.4 %
  • Vitamin C 1.4 %
  • Vitamin D 0.0 %
  • Vitamin E 0.4 %
  • Calcium 4.1 %
  • Copper 31.3 %
  • Folate 1.5 %
  • Iron 16.0 %
  • Magnesium 21.0 %
  • Manganese 50.3 %
  • Niacin 2.0 %
  • Pantothenic Acid 0.4 %
  • Phosphorus 12.1 %
  • Riboflavin 2.7 %
  • Selenium 3.4 %
  • Thiamin 1.0 %
  • Zinc 1.0 %


inside a coffee shop

So, we have discovered that Costa’s house hot chocolate is vegan and has been since November 2021. This is great news for all vegan chocoholics!

Also, Costa has many other vegan food and drink options, including almost all hot drinks (which can be veganised if ordered without dairy milk, or substituted for vegan milk) and several of their lunch options, such as macaroni and cheese and a selection of toasties.

Costa currently carries four dairy-free milks, which are: almond, coconut, gluten-free oat, and soya. While Costa’s hot chocolate is suitable vegans, it is advised that those following a strict vegan diet (or have allergies or intolerances to dairy milk) should be mindful of a small chance of cross-contamination.

Costa was founded in London in 1971 by two Italian brothers named Sergio and Bruno Costa, and remains one of the most popular UK coffee chains to date.

We’re all aware that funding our takeaway coffee (or hot chocolate) habit can get somewhat costly, so in a bid to save a few pennies each month, you can invest in a decent thermos or travel cup and make your own vegan hot chocolate to take with you on cold winter mornings. You can also top it off with coconut whipped cream for maximum yumminess!

We have also learned that your average cup of vegan hot chocolate only contains 49 calories! Score! 

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