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9 Things Baristas Would Like To Tell Coffee-Lovers

9 Things Baristas Would Like To Tell Coffee-Lovers

The world clings to coffee. In fact, 2.25 billion cups of coffee are consumed every day in the world!

We drink coffee to be more productive at work, to get us through the night shift, and sometimes just to get ourselves out the front door in the morning. We grab a cup to go on road trips, hack our hotel room coffee pots, and indulge. Whether it’s a pour over or a fresh french press, coffee is widely popular and fairly addicting. It’s here to stay.

Over the past several years, I’ve worked as a barista at four different coffee shops, some local and small, some hugely corporate. The barista lifestyle takes elements of retail work, the face to face communication skills of customer service, the multitasking and sense of urgency of kitchen work and smashes it all into one job.

At its core, working in a coffee shop is a pretty simple endeavor. But workplace variables often make situations more difficult than necessary. These are the things your friendly barista wishes they could tell you.

Cappuccinos and frappuccinos are two entirely different things

One drink is an Americanized, frozen, sugar-infused coffee slushie and the other is a fairly bitter, extra foamy latte.

Do you know which is which?

For my own sense of sanity, I relied on Google to give me these answers. It took a total of 30 seconds for me to find three definitions that spell it all out. Here are the pieces of the proverbial coffee puzzle.

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frappuccino

    cappuccino

      frappe

        Frappe is the term for an iced or blended coffee drink, typically topped with whipped cream and some type of garnish such as sprinkles. It’s essentially a “coffee milkshake”. All frappuccinos are frappes but not all frappes are frappuccinos (you’ll only find a frappuccino at Starbucks).

        A cappuccino on the other hand is essentially a latte with lots of extra foam. If someone asks for an extra dry cappuccino it’s literally just shots of espresso and foam.

        Please let this lesson sink in: just because two things rhyme doesn’t mean that they are the same or even similar for that matter. Point in case, a cappuccino and frappuccino couldn’t be more polar opposite drinks.

        Public reading material and ‘for here’ cups aren’t your personal property

        While working at a coffee shop a few years ago, I witnessed a regular occurrence that still seems as ridiculous today as it did back then.

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        A regular customer, who we will refer to as Dick McGee, had a morning ritual that was both staggering and unsanitary. McGee would order his daily whole milk latte that he insisted be served to him in a mug–not a paper cup, which is totally understandable. I’m all for not wasting cups! However, McGee had an odd sense of entitlement associated with ‘his’ mug and ‘his’ newspaper and magazines.

        They certainly weren’t his. The reading material and ceramic mugs were for everyone to use, but that didn’t stop McGee from taking all of these items into the bathroom with him, every day. He used these items as entertainment while taking a ritualistic morning poop. We knew this was the case because the average time that the reading material would go missing was at least an hour or more.

        I don’t have the words to express how that conversation went down. Awkwardness resounded; McGee just didn’t understand the logic behind why he couldn’t take those things into the bathroom with him. But I’ll put it this way, we stopped giving him drinks in ceramic mugs, we started hiding the reading material, and we did our best to be friendly in such an atypical scenario.

        When buying drinks for your entire office, please plan ahead

        This scenario has happened to me so many times–it’s infuriating. Nothing completely throws off a crowded morning at a coffee shop more than a random drink order for the entire office. Buying a few extra drinks for your friends is one thing, but placing a 25 drink order on the spot is like a slap in the face of the morning rush and all the employees in that building.

        Furthermore, if you have a complicated drink order composed of dozens of uniquely annoying drinks, call in and place the order ahead of time. This will make every step of the process much more fluid and enjoyable for everyone involved, yourself included.

        Yes, the hot, no-room, Americano you ordered is going to be extremely hot

        Ever think about why many Americanos are double cupped by default at the majority of coffee shops? It’s because the water used in that drink is only a few degrees short of boiling in most cases. If you order a regular Americano without room, please analyze what it is you’re ordering. The drink is going to be really hot if you don’t order an iced one, end of story.

        We are champions of multitasking

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        multitasking

          Need a smoothie, three bagels with cream cheese, and five coffee drinks all on one order? No problem!

          Looking for a pound of coffee ground to gold cone filter, three loaves of banana bread, and a gift series of cards? You got it!

          Multitasking skills and barista work go literally hand in hand. We blend drinks while we are pouring shots. We brew tea while we are stocking fridges. And we do all of these things while conversing with customers and keeping a smile on our faces.

          Be respectful and please don’t get in the way of these superhuman multitasking skills. We want to get your coffee to you as fast as possible.

          Many baristas don’t plan on working this job their entire lives

          Although many baristas seem to be in it for the fruitful benefits of a coffee house career, I can assure you that the job is not permanent for most. Baristas commonly juggle working and attending college simultaneously. I can’t tell you how many people asked me if I was a barista “lifer” while I worked in coffee shops. It’s a job, not a prison sentence!

          While we love our work, we recognize that more opportunity exists. Although I have mixed feelings about the corporate chain that is Starbucks, they recently made a move that addresses this very topic.

          Starbucks is now offering free online schooling from Arizona State University to eligible baristas. This concept is a fresh one for the coffee shop workforce. Hopefully other coffee houses will follow suit in the future.

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          Pulling the perfect shot of espresso is an artform

          espressocomic

            It may look like the easiest thing ever but pulling a perfect shot is actually much more technical than most people realize.

            If you’re curious about the espresso shot protocol, refer to this resource.

            Starbucks jargon applies at Starbucks

            When you walk into a local coffee shop and order a Venti Caramel Macchiato, the barista will likely make you a large caramel latte with a smile. But don’t let that fool you. Inside they are fiery with vexed rage.

            Baristas are only pretending to not be annoyed because, quite frankly, Starbucks terms should stay at Starbucks. And for the love of God, don’t order Starbucks Secret Menu items at a local coffee shop. Newsflash! Not every barista has worked at a Starbucks. The lucky ones haven’t.

            Talking on your phone while you order is not cool

            This one is simple. Just don’t be rude! We get that you are a paying customer but try and project at least a glimmer of respect towards the person taking your order. Put down your phone for two minutes; it won’t kill you, I promise.

            Featured photo credit: 29/1.2014 – Larry the Barista/julochka via flickr.com

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            Robert Parmer

            Freelance Writer

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            Published on March 27, 2020

            20 Easy Smoothie Recipes for Weight Loss

            20 Easy Smoothie Recipes for Weight Loss

            I’m sure you’ve heard of a million different smoothie recipes for weight loss, right? Let’s be honest…they are quick, easy, flavorful, filling, and so delicious! On top of that, you can easily adjust smoothies to meet your macros. Plus, they can make incredible low-calorie subs for some of those sweets you might be craving. 

            Maybe you’re wondering, are smoothies good for weight loss?

            Yes and no. Smoothies can be great meal replacements and a way to sneak in extra protein! However, they also can lead to lots of unwanted calories if used incorrectly.

            You’ve probably heard it said before: Don’t drink your calories. In a lot of cases, that can be true. It’s not necessarily that smoothies or liquid calories are bad, but it can be hard to justify a smoothie as being a meal, even if it has the calories of one. For that simple reason, some people trying to lose weight might use smoothies more as a snack than a meal, and with that could come unwanted weight gain.

            That being said, smoothies are generally healthy and can be amazing at curbing cravings! On top of that, the macro profile (portion of carbs, fats, and proteins) can be spot on as well. Sometimes it actually makes more sense to reach for a copy-cat smoothie version of your favorite dessert (made out of whole ingredients that will keep you satisfied) instead of reaching for a dessert that will spike your blood sugar.

            Because of these differences, we need to make a distinction between smoothies that are used as a meal vs ones that can be snuck in as a snack:

            Meal Smoothies

            These should have a mix of fiber, protein, carbs, and fat. These types of smoothies should generally be used as a meal substitute. An 8 ounce smoothie of just fruit isn’t enough to satisfy most people for long. However, this blend of macro-nutrients will ensure your body feels satiated until your next meal.

            Why is that? Fiber, protein, and fat tend to be slower to digest, so your body gets a steady trickle of nutrients that will last a longer time. In contrast, pure fruit is easily digested and will quickly boost your blood sugar only to drop it soon after.

            Snack Smoothies

            These are lower calorie and nutrient dense. In contrast to meal smoothies, these light and fresh smoothies can give you a quick boost of energy. These smoothies are an amazing way to sneak in extra greens and super-foods. However, they aren’t likely to keep you feeling full for long.

            Use snack smoothies between meals or when you need a pick-me-up. But be mindful! Too much snacking of any kind throughout the day could still lead to too many calories.

            Now that you know the difference between snack and meal smoothies, dig in to my top 20 smoothie recipes! With options ranging from decadent desserts to light and fresh pick me ups, you’ll find everything you need below! It’s time to satisfy your cravings the healthy way!

            1. Snickerdoodle Smoothie

            Snickerdoodle Smoothie @spabettie

              Is there anything better than that sweet and unique tang of a snickerdoodle cookie? I grew up with this cookie as an infamous family dessert (we even named our rabbits after this favorite treat). However, if you’re looking to bring back that taste without the calories, all hope is not lost! This snickerdoodle smoothie registers at under 400 calories and rings in 14 grams of protein. If your looking to lower calories and sugar, there are also modifications to use stevia or monk fruit as a sweetener instead!

              Check out the recipe here!

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              2. The Best Green Smoothie

                Okay, let’s be real. We all want to add a little more green into our lives. However, sometimes it can be hard to gag down. Change all of that with this 5-star smoothie recipe. Not only is this smoothie incredibly delicious, but it’s also packed with nutrients. Chug those greens the easy way!

                Check out the recipe here!

                3. Detox Smoothie

                See the source image

                  This smoothie is fresh, light, and green, giving your body the nutrient boost it needs. In addition to that, it packs a bonus boost of cilantro, which is said to aid in reducing heavy metal toxicity.

                  Check out the recipe here!

                  4. Detox Smoothie #2

                  Detox Smoothie

                    This incredible smoothie recipe not only gives you the ingredients, but also a step-by-step guide to designing your own fantastic smoothie recipes! Once you get a taste of this, you will never want to go back!

                    Check out the recipe here!

                    5. Easy Weight Loss Smoothie

                    Easy Weight Loss Smoothie: Zucchini, Kale, Buckwheat, Baobab, Carrots, Green Grapes

                      If you aren’t a fan of bananas, then this one is for you! Instead, this smoothie uses zucchini as a thickening agent and buckwheat to keep you full and satisfied all day long! And for you celiacs out there…yes, buckwheat is gluten free!

                      Check out the recipe here!

                      6. Creamy Mint Chocolate Chip Smoothie

                      See the source image

                        Part of the struggle with trying to lose weight and create healthier habits is the struggle of having to give up some of your favorite foods, like chocolate. Say no more. This chocolate mint smoothie is the perfect blend of protein and chocolate to satisfy your cravings for good! Why avoid what you love when you can indulge the healthy way?

                        Check out the recipe here!

                        7. Creamy Cacao Avocado Smoothie

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                        See the source image

                          Speaking of chocolate, give this smoothie a go! The blend of avocado and chocolate will keep you feeling satisfied and healthy all day long. Not to mention, the creaminess of this one will blow your mind.

                          Check out the recipe here!

                          8. Copy-Cat Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino

                          This easy, healthy homemade Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino recipe is low calorie, vegan, and so delicious! Even better than the original and perfect for coffee frappuccino lovers. Recipe at wellplated.com | @wellplated

                            Have you ever gone to a coffee shop and felt the agonizing sting of realizing you can’t order anything but a black coffee? I feel your pain. Personally, I am a huge frappuccino girl, and life without my blends sounds agonizing. Is it a smoothie? Technically no. But this recipe could easily double as one! It’s lower in calories, healthier, and still delicious. Feel free to add some collagen for an added protein boost!

                            Check out the recipe here!

                            9. Frozen Fruit Smoothie

                            A glass of frozen fruit smoothie in crushed ice, garnished with berries and mint.

                              Sometimes, you don’t need to venture far past the basics to find your ideal smoothie. With a base of apple juice and yogurt, this smoothie provides the best blend of sweetness and creaminess!

                              Check out the recipe here!

                              10. Strawberry Keto Smoothie

                              Strawberry Avocado Keto Smoothie Recipe with Almond Milk - The best strawberry avocado smoothie recipe needs just 4 INGREDIENTS! You're going to love this paleo keto smoothie with almond milk. And, it's ready in a just a few minutes.

                                Yes! You can still have smoothies while on a keto diet. As it just so happens, berries are very low-carb! In addition to that, this smoothie uses avocado to add an extra boost of creaminess and healthy fats. This one is sure to keep you burning fat all day long!

                                Check out the recipe here!

                                11. Real Fruit Smoothie

                                Real Fruit Smoothie

                                  Stick to the basics to get a maximum boost of nutrients! This smoothie gets straight to the point by using the best fruit medleys to blend you the ultimate weight loss drink.

                                  Check out the recipe here!

                                  12. Citrus Energy-Boosting Smoothie

                                  pre workout smoothie

                                    Feeling tired and run down? Instead of running to the coffee pot when you first wake up, try running to the blender instead! This amazing smoothie mix is an incredible way to give your body a nutrient boost while giving you the energy you need to get through the day.

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                                    Check out the recipe here!

                                    13. Skinny Strawberry Shortcake Smoothie

                                    Skinny Strawberry Shortcake Smoothie -- only 3 ingredients in this healthy recipe & it tastes like dessert!

                                      This vegan recipe will have you drooling for more! It’s vegan, low calorie, and delicious! What makes it different than any regular strawberry smoothie? The secret is in a butter extract that gives it a rich pastry flavor while keeping it low in calories. If you feel like leaving your chair to blend this one up right away, you are in good company.

                                      Check out the recipe here!

                                      14. Banana Split Smoothie

                                      Glass of our amazing Vegan Banana Split Smoothie with Coconut Whipped Cream and a cherry on top

                                        This rich and decadent smoothie will have you feeling like you’re indulging at an old fashioned ice cream parlor. This recipe is absolutely delicious and will have our cravings flying out the window. It stays deliciously smooth and creamy with the banana base and dates for an extra touch of creaminess.

                                        Fair warning: this smoothie does have a slightly higher natural sugar content. However, it is much lower than going crazy and diving into a tub of Ben and Jerry’s. Of course, if you feel like having a lighter version of this same drink, you can always sub a little banana and dates for zucchini and stevia.

                                        Check out the recipe here!

                                        15. Skinny Oatmeal Cookie Smoothie

                                        (Skinny!) Oatmeal Cookie Smoothie | gimmesomeoven.com #vegan #glutenfree

                                          And here we have it! Yet another healthy smoothie version of your favorite dessert! If you’re getting sick of eating oatmeal in the mornings, try using it in a shake instead! Because of the high fiber in oatmeal, it helps keep you feeling full and satiated longer while giving the smoothie a fun new texture.

                                          Check out the recipe here!

                                          16. Pineapple Kale Smoothie

                                          Good for you kale smoothie in a glass made with ingredients like bananas, pineapple, and honey which have tons of health benefits

                                            If you’re looking to sneak some extra greens into your day (and let’s be honest, aren’t we all!) this pineapple kale smoothie is for you! Not only are the ingredients incredibly nutrient dense, but they’re also light and fresh. Pineapple is known for helping digestion because of an enzyme it contains called bromelain. Just for that reason, this smoothie can keep you feeling light and energized after you sip!

                                            Check out the recipe here!

                                            17. Healthy Shamrock Shake

                                            Tall milkshake glass with Shamrock Shake Mint Smoothie

                                              You don’t have to be Irish to enjoy a good shamrock shake! Also, it turns out you don’t have to be unhealthy for it either! This shamrock shake is made of entirely healthy ingredients and even sports Greek yogurt for an extra protein boost. Have a bowl of yogurt or a shamrock shake? It’s your choice, but I know which one I would go for! And the ingredients turn out to be almost exactly identical at the end of the day.

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                                              Check out the recipe here!

                                              18. Cinnamon Roll Smoothie

                                              straw with creamy Banana cinnamon roll smoothie sticking to it

                                                Once again sporting Greek yogurt for a good protein boost, this smoothie could make an amazing low-calorie meal replacement. It contains yogurt, oats, chia seeds, and fruit, offering a great blend of fiber, protein, carbs, and healthy fats. Not only does it taste fantastic, but it could very well curb cravings while remaining relatively low-calorie and satiating.

                                                Check out the recipe here!

                                                19. Golden Glow Turmeric Smoothie

                                                Golden Glow Pineapple Turmeric Smoothie! Vegan, vegetarian, gluten free, easy to make!

                                                  The sound of having turmeric in your smoothie might make some of you cringe, but it is definitely worth trying. For one, pineapple has such a strong flavor in and of itself that the turmeric’s taste is almost completely masked. Secondly, turmeric is a strong anti-inflammatory that everyone should try adding it to their diet. You might be surprised to find out that it is actually pretty tasty as well!

                                                  Check out the recipe here!

                                                  20. Copy-Cat Disneyland Dole Whip Smoothie

                                                  Homemade, Vegan, Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Plant-based, Dessert, cruelty-free, Dole Whip, Disneyland Dole Whip, Disneyland, Disney, Pineapple, Sorbet, Soft Serve, Gemma Stafford, Bigger Bolder Baking, Recipe, How to make Dole Whip

                                                     

                                                    If you really want to take a taste of magic home, try out this fantastic recipe! Made with only two ingredients, you will get that creamy indulgent taste you love without the sugar or extra calories. Curb those cravings the right way!

                                                    Check out the recipe here!

                                                    Bonus Smoothie Additions

                                                    For an extra weight loss boost, try these fun additions!

                                                    Greens

                                                    Sneak in greens wherever you can! Smoothies tend to be very flavorful, so you usually won’t even notice a few added greens in there. However, the nutrients will keep you feeling extra energetic throughout the day!

                                                    Protein

                                                    Add in a small scoop of protein powder to almost any smoothie. Especially if you are looking for a meal replacement, the simple addition of protein powder will ensure you’re staying full throughout the day!

                                                    Frozen Zucchini

                                                    Did you hear me right? Yes you did! Zucchini is actually a great thickening agent in smoothies. Translation: Less sugar and more fiber! Since zucchini is so low in calories and almost flavorless, you can use it in smoothies for a rich and creamy texture while keeping things low-calorie. Plus, the extra fiber will have you feeling like you had a full meal for way less calories.

                                                    Sweetener Subs

                                                    Most smoothies use extra honey, syrups, or fruit for their sweeteners. However, that can add up very quickly to unwanted calories. Instead, try subbing low calorie sweeteners like monk fruit or stevia once in a while to cut down on the high sugar count. That being said, avoid artificial sweeteners like Splenda. They won’t do you any good.

                                                    Sub Desserts

                                                    Try making healthy smoothie renditions of your favorite desserts. We’re only human, and it can be hard to stick to a healthy diet sometimes. Instead of giving something up, find a sub for your favorite meals! In this case, getting that amazing flavor you are craving in the form of a low-calorie smoothie could be just the thing for you!

                                                    More Healthy Recipes

                                                    Featured photo credit: Chelsea shapouri via unsplash.com

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