With the massive drink selection Dutch Bros offers, what makes the Caramelizer one of its most popular selections?
I wouldn’t even consider myself a huge caramel fan, and I’m obsessed with the Caramelizer.
So, what’s the big deal?
I’ll cover exactly what the drink consists of, what makes it such a cult favorite, and my favorite ways of ordering it.
- The Dutch Bros Caramelizer is essentially a caramel mocha.
- The Caramelizer is made with chocolate milk, caramel sauce, and espresso.
- It can be ordered hot, iced, or blended.
The Dutch Bros Caramelizer (Why Does Everyone Love It?)
I probably never would’ve tried the Caramelizer if it weren’t for a grade-A recommendation from one of my local Broistas, and I’m so glad I did.
It turns out, it’s notoriety all comes down to 2 main factors:
The Caramelizer is smooth and sweet and has the perfect mix of chocolate, caramel, and coffee (made with the Dutch 3 bean blend from Brazil, Colombia, & El Salvador).
It isn’t ultra caramel-rich like the Dutch Bros Golden Eagle, nor as chocolatey flavors as a mocha - but walks a tightrope between both worlds.
The rich, buttery sweetness of caramel effortlessly complements the rich, velvety bitterness of chocolate.
Add in the bold DB coffee, and the silky, vibrant Caramelizer is born.
I consider this Dutch Bros caramel drink to be like one of those ‘top-shelf’ beverages you get to celebrate special moments.
...special moments like living and breathing!
Half of the reason why I love chocolate milk is the velvety soft appearance it has.
As the Caramelizer is made using chocolate milk and ribbons of caramel sauce, it just oozes decadence.
My Broistas truly create works of art, where the ingredients seem to be layered and add dimension between the differing shades.
This isn’t just a boring, old black coffee - it’s a testament to a perfect melding of rich flavors that deserves to be shown off.
It comes topped whipped cream - the little mountaintop from which I exclaim my delight upon each first sip.
What's In a Dutch Bros Caramelizer?
The drink is very similar to regular caramel mocha and contains:
When I’m trying to watch my calorie intake, I order an Americano. When I want to enjoy life even more, I order a Caramelizer.
I know it’s not the healthiest option - I mean, its primary ingredient is chocolate milk.
The below table gives the number of calories for each type and size:
Caramelizer Nutritional Breakdown
(Iced - Without Modification)
Caramelizer Nutritional Breakdown
(Hot - Without Modification)
Caramelizer Nutritional Breakdown
(Blended - Without Modification)
The quantity of caffeine a Caramelizer includes depends on the size ordered.
Dutch Bros use 2 shots of their bold espresso in one cup of their small and medium beverages and 4 shots of espresso in their large drinks.
This means a small or medium Dutch Bros Caramelizer will have 90-120mg of caffeine, and a large Caramelizer at Dutch Bros will have 180-200mg.
5 Ways To Customize This Drink
Half of the fun of Dutch Bros is going crazy with creativity and customization! What I love so much about them is that they don’t put limits.
For example, if I want my Caramelizer richer, dairy-free, keto, etcetera - they can make it happen.
Here’s my little secret stash of Caramelizer customizations I can’t go without:
1. Almond Milk Caramelizer
Are you dairy-free or lactose intolerant? Then the almond milk version will be right up your street. You can even have it with a dairy-free soft top, so it's still as light and creamy.
The chocolate milk is replaced with an almond alternative, and they add extra chocolate syrup and chocolate sauce, so it still has the caramel mocha taste.
The almond milk also gives a slightly nutty flavor which makes the drink taste even better.
2. Dutch Bros Keto Caramelizer
For the longest time, I just stuck to plain coffee when I was following the Keto diet. Over time, I realized that a ton of my favorite DB drinks could be made to be Keto-friendly!
The Dutch Bros Keto version is my go-to when I’m watching my carbs and sugar intake. It’s lighter, with fewer calories, and no sugar to speak of.
However, the sugar-free caramel and chocolate sauces combined with cold brew and heavy cream, certainly aren’t lacking in flavor.
According to the nutrition facts, a standard cup of this cold brew Caramelizer has 0g total carbs (as long as it isn’t topped with whipped cream), and it still tastes like a treat.
3. Sugar-Free Caramelizer
I’m a huge fan of Dutch Bros sugar-free options, mainly because they don’t have that weird, chemically taste and are just more ‘authentic’.
For a lower-calorie version of the Caramelizer, then this recipe is a great option.
A regular Dutch Bros caramelizer uses high-calorie chocolate milk, chocolate sauce, and caramel sauce, but this sugar-free version swaps them out for half and half and sugar-free sauces.
The Broista should hold the whipped cream on top (however, soft tops have less sugar!).
This is seriously one of the best sugar-free coffee drinks I’ve ever had in my life.
It won't be completely sugar-free, but by using SF caramel and chocolate sauce and replacing the chocolate milk, it's less than 180 calories in a serving.
4. Nitro Caramelizer
This ultra-smooth, velvety version of the already-silky Caramelizer is heavenly. I don’t know what other word could describe the Nitro Caramelizer.
It's still made with chocolate milk, caramel sauce, and whipped cream - but calls for cold brew instead of espresso.
The cold brew also has infused nitrogen added through a high-pressure pump.
This makes it smoother and darker in appearance than the standard Dutch Bros Caramelizer recipe.
For me, coffee without a good hit of caffeine is like a concert without music - it’s missing the magic. With 290 mg of caffeine, the Nitro Caramelizer is like Fantasia.
5. Dairy Free Options
I know the Caramelizer recipe calls for Dutch Bros’ signature chocolate milk, that doesn’t mean it can’t be ordered dairy-free.
At DB, dairy-free milks are known as ‘alternative milks’. Their chocolate milk or ‘Dutch Cocoa’ is notably thicker than any of the dairy free milks.
Dutch Bros offers coconut milk, almond milk, and oat milk.
I find almond milk to give drinks a ‘watered-down’ taste, and much prefer oat milk. The nutty taste of oat milk really brings out chocolate and coffee flavors well!
I also ask for extra shots of chocolate sauce in order to make it as rich as their Dutch Cocoa, but that’s just me.
How to Make A Caramelizer From Dutch Bros At Home
I like to keep it simple, so here's how to satisfy your Caramelizer cravings at home in 7 simple steps.
- 1Brew espresso and add a tablespoon of caramel sauce to the cup
- 2Use a measuring cup and add 200-250ml chocolate milk to your espresso mix. Stir to combine in the cup.
- 3Pour the mixture into a shaker or blender.
- 4Shake or blend to combine.
- 5Add ice to a glass and pour the mixture over it. Stir to cool the whole mixture.
- 6Add whipped cream and caramel sauce drizzle (if desired).
Common Dutch Bros Caramelizer Questions
Is the Caramelizer at Dutch Bros good?
The Caramelizer at Dutch Bros is more than good - it’s delectable, velvety-smooth, sweet, and has enough caffeine to keep you going through the entire day. It’s a decadent treat I know that won’t leave me in a sugar coma.
Is Dutch Bros Caramelizer Gluten-free?
A Caramelizer from Dutch Bros is gluten-free and safe for those with celiac disease.
How much is a Caramelizer from Dutch Bros?
A Caramelizer is $3.00 for a small, $3.50 for a medium, and $4.50 for a large.
How much sugar is in a Caramelizer?
There are 43g of sugar in a regular Caramelizer, 60g of sugar in a medium Caramelizer, and 69g of sugar in a large Caramelizer.
What kind of caramel does Dutch Bros use?
The coffee chain uses Torani syrups in all their drinks, and Torani caramel syrup is used to make a Dutch Bros Caramelizer.
Dive Into The Caramel Craze!
A Dutch Bros Caramelizer is a luscious melding of chocolate milk, rich espresso, and buttery caramel.
This trio of ingredients perfectly complement the others, for a sweet and bold drink that I simply can’t get enough of.
Whether hot, blended, or over ice, it can be customized to suit any tastes or preferences.
I’m about to go get one right now!