You Should Never Buy Starbucks' Flavored Coffee K-Cups. Here's Why

If your Starbucks "usual" includes a shot of something extra — Cinnamon Dolce, perhaps, or maybe a seasonal flavor, like Pumpkin Spice —you might be tempted to achieve the same effect in your own kitchen, by buying flavored Starbucks K-Cup Pods, available online, at grocery stores, and heck, even at drugstores like CVS and Walgreens. There are currently around a dozen flavored K-cup options, ranging from basic Vanilla, to Toasted Graham, which Starbucks' website describes as a medium roast inspired by the classic graham cracker cookie.

But before you start popping these pods in your Keurig, heed the warning of Starbucks fans who've been burned by flavors that sound much better than they actually taste. For example, the Mocha K-Cup Pod got a 1.5 rating out of 10 from Spoon University, because this blend lacked the chocolatey goodness of its in-store counterpart. Faring only slightly better, at 4 out of 10, was Caramel, which reportedly smelled like the popular sundae topping, but didn't taste like anything special.

Here's a better way to make Starbucks flavored coffee with a Keurig machine

You don't have to pour the idea of enjoying a Starbucks flavored drink at home down the drain, and you actually can use your Keurig for flavored coffee — you just have to stick with tried-and-true, non-flavored pods, like Pikes Place Roast, which is top-rated for flavor (via Fried Coffee). Make it in your machine, then add a Starbucks Syrup, which you can buy in retail locations or online. 

But wait; you're not a professional barista! What if you over-sweeten it or under-flavor it? Not to worry: you got this. The Starbucks flavoring formula is pretty straightforward according to Coffee Stylish. Combine a standard 8-ounce cup of coffee with one pump of Starbucks syrup (that's 1/2 tablespoon).

Want to get fancier and flavor a latte, iced coffee, or espresso brewed at home?  Starbucks Reddit Barista shared a drinks cheat sheet, so you can figure out exactly how many shots to add, depending on the size and type of your drink.