Starbucks has been fueling our caffeine addiction for decades, and while food might be the last thing on your mind when you're headed out for a coffee, this popular stop is also serving lunch options that are perfect for those on-the-go days when you just can't seem to find the time. Starbucks only started serving food in 2003, and at the time the menu was limited to breakfast foods. The tiny but mighty lunch menu came to be shortly thereafter and consisted of various sandwiches that have come and gone throughout the years.
Today, you can find four different sandwiches on the menu. We've taken it upon ourselves to rank the Starbucks lunch menu, far less of a feat than ranking every single Starbucks drink out there, but hopefully just as informative. If you've been curious about whether Starbucks' lunch sandwiches are actually any good, follow along as we visit our local Starbucks to determine the worst and best options on the menu.
Tomato & Mozzarella On Focaccia
We want to end on a high note, so let's start with our least favorite option on this lunch menu. While it is a great option for those who don't eat meat, the Starbucks Tomato & Mozzarella on Focaccia was not the highlight of the lunch options for us. Now, we know that Starbucks isn't necessarily serving up freshly pressed paninis for lunch, but we were expecting a little bit more from this sandwich.
Described as being filled with a piece of creamy mozzarella cheese and a tasty basil pesto, unfortunately, a lot of the flavors of this sandwich fell flat. The cheese was lacking, and the sandwich could have been improved by a more generous pesto flavor. The focaccia bread could have been a redeeming factor, but also failed to add much to the sandwich.
However, we will have to give credit to the sun-dried tomato for carrying the flavor of this sandwich on its shoulders. This sandwich wouldn't be a bad option for somebody on the go if it were a last resort, but we certainly wouldn't recommend it for a top-tier lunch optio
Turkey, Provolone & Pesto On Ciabatta
Next up, we have the Turkey, Provolone, and Pesto on Ciabatta, which first appeared on the Starbucks menu in 2014. We have to say that we were most disappointed by this sandwich because of its promising description. Just from looking at the menu, this sandwich certainly sounds delicious, with all of the elements to make the perfect sandwich. Upon cutting the sandwich open, all of the layers are visible, which is always a good sign. Starbucks did not skimp on the turkey, and warmed up, the cheese appeared nicely melted.
For all of the built-up excitement, we were let down when we bit into this sandwich. At first notice, the turkey was a little bit dry and there was a lack of pesto flavor. We would definitely recommend re-heating this sandwich if you get it to go, as the melted provolone goes a long way. The ciabatta was soft and tasty, but the dryness of the sandwich was the most stand-out part about it. To make this sandwich better, we might throw a little bit of our own pesto on it at home to help elevate it. Otherwise, this would not be our go-to if given the option.
Crispy Grilled Cheese On Sourdough
We're only going up from here, and the Crispy Grilled Cheese on Sourdough was definitely making up for some of the other lackluster sandwiches that we tried. There's nothing fancy about grilled cheese, but that is part of what makes it so great. The Starbucks version of this comfort sandwich includes a blend of three cheeses and is served on sourdough slices that are covered in butter to give it a crispy effect.
Our main critique of this sandwich is that it could be more crispy -- we really wanted to hear that satisfying crunch upon biting into it and didn't quite get it. Tossing this sandwich on the stovetop for a few minutes to let it crisp up could be an easy solution to this issue, and would make a big difference.
On the flavor front, this sandwich had everything that we could ask for in a grilled cheese. While we could always use more cheese, the blend of cheeses worked perfectly. The bread was beautifully buttery, and each bite was a flavor-packed, savory experience. If you really wanted to elevate this sandwich, you could serve it with the classic side of tomato soup. That being said, if you're in a pinch and in need of a quick lunch, this grilled cheese won't disappoint.
Ham & Swiss On Baguette
Saving the best for last, our favorite sandwich from the Starbucks lunch menu was the Ham & Swiss on Baguette. This sandwich is as simple as it sounds, with just ham and Swiss as the filling and a dijon butter to give it a bit of a kick. We won't go as far as to say that this sandwich could compare to a croque monsieur, but it's probably as close as you'll get on the go. Once again, we would recommend heating this sandwich up to ensure that the bread is soft and the melty cheese is in full effect. The ham in this sandwich was perfectly moist, complimented by the stretchy Swiss cheese. Despite it being on a baguette, the bread was just soft enough that we didn't have to unhinge our jaw to bite into this delicious sandwich.
If you take our advice and are looking to try the Starbucks lunch menu for the first time, this would be the sandwich to try. It's simple, yet flavor-packed, and is a perfect afternoon pick-me-up to accompany a Starbucks beverage of your choice.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.