Starbucks Christmas Blend vs Holiday Blend – Which one has a better flavor?

Whether you’re a Starbucks coffee fan or not, you can’t deny the fact that Starbucks is one of the biggest coffee franchises in the world. With its wide range of signature products and seasonal ones, it can be confusing to find the best Starbucks coffee beans. However, Starbucks Christmas Blend and Holiday Blend are some of the seasonal varieties that you can enjoy during the holidays.

Starbucks Christmas Blend and Holiday Blend have sweet, spicy, and full-bodied holiday flavors that complement almost everything on your holiday table. The Christmas blend is got from whole bean or ground coffee to give you a dark roast coffee with refined and spicy-tasting notes that you can enjoy during the holidays. However, the holiday blend is a medium roast ground coffee that features sweet maple and herbal notes that you can use to create great-tasting festive flavors.                                              

Starbucks Christmas blend

Starbucks introduced the Christmas blend in 1984 and from then on it has become a beloved tradition. This was a unique blend of rare and spicy Sumatran beans, Indonesian coffee, and Latin American beans that have been aged for about 3-5 years with a cedary and spicy flavor that is balanced by a rich and sweet smoothness.Each year they create a new bag that contains the latest Christmas blend that captures the imagination and fun details that come with the season. Each blend is unique and its flavors change each year so you cant get the same blend. The first Christmas blend was packed in plain brown paper bags, but over the years Starbucks has transformed these bags with decorative artwork and high-tech packaging that shares each coffee’s unique story through words and images.

The 2020 Christmas blend featured dark roasted beans from PapuaNew Guinea, Colombia, and Guatemala to give it the sweetness and spice of the original with notes of baking spices, herbs, and a rich, velvety chocolate finish. This Christmas blend also came with a decaffeinated version that is usually a soothing green and an espresso roast that is sweet, rich, and spicy that was made from the sun-dried Ethiopian Sidama coffee beans that blend very well with Sumatran and Costa Rican coffee.

Starbucks holiday blend

Starbucks wanted to provide its customers with a unique medium roast coffee for the holidays, so in 2013 it created a recipe that featured mellow Sumatran and bright Latin American coffees to create the holiday blend. This resulted in an elegant flavor with a balance of herbal and maple flavors creating a full-bodied with medium acidity. This holiday blend coffee is made with the finest coffee beans to bring out the festive holiday flavors with every sip you take. This Asian-pacific coffee will match nicely with a sugar plum cheese Danish to bring out the herbal notes of the coffee. You can slowly sip and enjoy its sweetness and layered flavors as you enjoy your holidays.

Differences between Starbucks Christmas Blend and Holiday Blend

Christmas blend
Holiday blend
Only Starbucks retail stores
Grocery stores and outlets
Type of coffee beans used
Latin American, aged Sumatra, and Indonesian coffee
Latin American and Sumatran
Roast level
Dark roast
Medium roast


Both the Starbucks Christmas Blend and Holiday Blend used to be the same thing until the holiday blend was created. The Christmas blend was created in 1984 while the holiday blend was created much later in 2013. The holiday blend is sold in grocery stores and outlets while the Christmas blend is sold in Starbucks retail stores.

Type of coffee beans

The Starbucks Christmas blend is created with dark roast coffee beans from Latin America, Indonesia, and aged Sumatran coffees that give your coffee sweet and spicy flavors. The rare spicy Sumatra coffee beans also bring out their deep notes of cedar and sweet, black licorice. The holiday blend on the other hand is created with mellow Sumatra and Latin American coffee beans to create a medium roast ground coffee with a sweet maple and herbal notes.

Complimentary food

The Starbucks Christmas blend is a combination of smooth, full-bodied Indonesian coffee with vibrant Latin American beans with a finishing touch of rare, aged, and spicy Sumatra beans. The soft cedary spice of the Sumatra beans gives the coffee the perfect finish that will give your holiday meal a rich taste. The Christmas blend is a sturdy coffee that will go very well with most holiday foods including sweet and spicy desserts like gingerbread, savory dishes, or a cranberry bliss bar that has the tartness of the cranberries.

The holiday blend, however, is a smooth coffee that has been combined with the roasted perfection of Asian and pacific coffee beans to create a full-bodied herbal flavor with a sweet taste. The elegant flavor with layers of maple and herbal notes gives it a rich mocha flavor that will go very well with sweet desserts like sugarplum cheese Danish and other holiday snacks.

Choosing Starbucks coffee beans

Here are a few points to consider when buying your Starbucks Christmas and holiday blends.


Starbucks sources its coffee beans from Ethiopia, Indonesia, Italy, and Guatemala and each coffee bean have different flavors. Coffee beans from Guatemala have a nutty flavor, while those from Ethiopia have a citric sour taste.

Product name

The coffee name is how you distinguish different product varieties of the same brand. The name of the product is related to the coffee properties. A dark roast coffee means the coffee has a robust and bold coffee flavor that is used mostly for espresso.

Roast level

The coffee blend can either be a lightly roasted coffee that is less bitter but very acidic or a dark roast that is less sour with a bitter taste. A medium roast is the most balanced type of coffee. The roast type will also help you know the brewing machine to use. A light roast is best with a drip-style machine, while a dark roast is suited for an espresso machine.


Both Starbucks Christmas Blend and Holiday Blend are excellent coffee blends that you can use to bring out the holiday mood and they complement very well with most of your holiday foods. The Christmas blend is a dark roast coffee that has a rich, sweet, and unique flavor, but is only available in Starbucks retail stores, but the holiday blend is readily available in grocery stores so you can have a cup of sweet-flavored coffee at any time.


Is Starbucks Christmas blend the same every year?

Every year Starbucks creates a unique Christmas blend different from last year which means its flavors keep changing each year.

Is Starbucks holiday blend good?

It has a delicious taste that gives your coffee a wonderful spicy aroma and taste that keeps changing every year.