Love the limited-edition Starbucks Unicorn Frappuccino, but haven't had a chance to try it before it's gone? No worries! It's easy to make this color changing, flavor changing drink at home. And this recipe is even better than the original, because it's made without dairy or refined sugar, and is tinted with all-natural colors.
What is the Unicorn Frappe?
For a limited time in April 2017, Starbucks released this bright pink frappe, described as:
The flavor-changing, color-changing, totally not-made-up Unicorn Frappuccino. Magical flavors start off sweet and fruity transforming to pleasantly sour. Swirl it to reveal a color-changing spectacle of purple and pink. It's finished with whipped cream-sprinkled pink and blue fairy powders.
Of course, the kids went nuts. And so did my color-loving heart.
Forget the fact that I'm a 40-year-old mama. When I heard about this Unicorn Drink, I wanted one. Just to taste. Just to try. Just to hold in my whimiscal hands for a fleeting moment.
I blame this on Lisa Frank.
But initial reviews of the drink were mixed. In this video review, the phrase "it's sweet" and "wow it's sweet" was repeated, ohh, 92830 times.
Which left me with cold feet. Because as much as I love the occasional splurge, an overly sweet, hyper colored pink drink suddenly sounded less appealing.
So I set out to recreate the drink, but with a few of the tweaks my healthy heart desired. For one, no milk. I swapped out the dairy for Coconut-Almond Milk. Because, yum. And also: no dairy.
I also nixed the easy-coloring route, opting instead for all-natural color powders. Which I'm bsessed with anyway, because the colors are stunning. Added bonus: they're made with natural ingredients including plants, seeds and veggies. And don't give off the same nappy bitterness you get with artificial tints.
The original drink starts with a white chocolate drizzle. Sugarsugarsugar. Which I turned into an all-natural, easy-to-make-at-home coconut-honey drizzle. Just whisk it together with extract and coloring powder, and you've got a gorgeous blue sauce that nicely sticks to the side of your glass, creating a stunning canvas for your pink drink.
Speaking of pink drinks, instead of sugary premade powder, this one is made with frozen organic mango, sweetened with honey, and tinted again with the beautiful "Berry" color. You could also toss in a pitaya, if you're feeling fruity and want to largely avoid food tint altogether.
And finally, the "fairy dust" a simple concoction of naturally colored sprinkles and citric acid, which I was able to find in the supplement section of my local grocer. Ask the on-duty pharmacist, sometimes they carry the bottles behind the counter.
We opted to top our with fresh whipped cream (it's a leftover paleo thing), but you can just as easily top this tasty drink with whipped coconut cream or nondairy whipped topping. You decide!
When the kids came home from school, I handed over four big plastic cups, filled with DIY Unicorn Drink. They thought I'd driven to the coffee shop down the street, ordered in a whole batch, and brought them home special.
It wasn't until the last sip that I finally sprung it on 'em. These were homemade.
"Oh, good! That means we can make another one right now" shouted one twin.
We're in a shouting face around these parts. But then again, I suppose a teen that doesn't shout when they're excited would be...well....a unicorn.
Happy Drinking, You.
Makes 2 large drinks | 10 mins
- 1/2 cup creamed honey, melted*
- 1 box McCormick Color Nature
- 1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
- 1 (13 oz) bag frozen mango
- 2-3 cups coconut-almond milk (or almond milk, or milk)
- 1 1/2 cups fresh whipped cream, sweetened with honey or stevia
- 1 Tbsp pink sprinkles or sparkling sugar
- 1 Tbsp blue sprinkles or sparkling sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon citric acid (or sugar from 1 Pixy Stick)
In a small bowl, stir together 1/4 cup honey, half the "Sky Blue" coloring packet (or to desired tint) and coconut extract. Drizzle down the sides of a clear plastic cup.
In a blender, puree together mango, milk, 1/4 cup honey and just enough of the "Berry" coloring packet to create a pretty pink. Blend until smooth. Pour into drizzled cups.
Top with whipped cream.
Stir together blue sprinkles, half of citric acid and a small sprinkle of "Sky Blue" coloring powder. Stir together pink sprinkles, half of citric acid, and a small sprinkle of "Berry" coloring powder.
Sprinkle sprinkles on whipped cream. Serve with large straw and enjoy!
If desired, swap in White Chocolate Sauce for