iced coffeeAre they really adding too much ice?Getty Images/Justin Sullivan

Oh, Starbucks. The coffee chain we love to hate but continue to form lines around the block for. They’ve received backlash for everything from rising drink prices and unnecessarily unhealthy products, to new rewards program, and now, for the amount of ice they put in their cold drinks.

Back in May, a Chicago woman filed a lawsuit against Starbucksclaiming that the amount of advertised iced coffee you pay for is not what actually ends up in your cup. The suit specifically cites that the Venti drinks, which are advertised as a 24-ounce drink, contain only 14 ounces of liquid after ice is added.  

Is she just being unreasonable, or are your baristas seriously underfilling your drink? I had to get to the bottom of this in the most scientific way possible. So I drove all around campus and started pouring cups of coffee into my measuring cup.

measuringcupSpoon University/Elena Bailoni

I bought a 16-ounce drink everywhere I went. After getting the drink, I would immediately pour the coffee into my measuring cup. I always ordered an unsweetened iced coffee, for the record. I visited three Starbucks locations and one Dunkin’ Donuts.

My goals for the experiment were to see how much liquid actually comes in a cup, how it compares to the amount the lawsuit is claiming they’re leaving out, and to see if most Starbucks stores are consistent with their pours. The Dunkin’ stop was to see if there was a comparable difference between Starbucks and what other coffee chains are giving you.

And now for some quick math before we get to the real results. The lawsuit claims that a Starbucks Venti drink only comes 58% full. Being the broke college student that I am, I decided to stick with the Grande and 16-ounce drinks to save a little cash. Still, using this math, these drinks at Starbucks would have to contain about 9.5 ounces of coffee to be on par. Now let's get started.

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