SEATTLE — This past year for Starbucks Corp. has marked multiple menu milestones, including introducing its first new holiday offering since 2017 and its first new pumpkin coffee beverage since the launch of the Pumpkin Spice Latte 16 years ago. But perhaps the coffee chain’s largest accomplishment over the last few months has been its plant-based innovation.

The plant-based focus is a key pillar in Starbucks’ sustainability commitment unveiled in January. The company committed to expand plant-based choices, because an “environmentally friendly menu contributes to our goal to be a resource positive company,” Starbucks said.

“Starbucks’ aspiration is to become resource positive,” said Michael Kobori, chief sustainability officer at Starbucks. “This aspiration, coupled with the insight that our customers are looking for more plant-based choices, has inspired the development of exciting and delicious plant-based beverages and food. Our customers continue to look for new ways to enjoy plant-based options at Starbucks and customize their Starbucks moment, and we are delighted to introduce these new menu items to our customers over the coming years.”

Most recently, Starbucks added to its menu the Impossible Breakfast Sandwich, featuring Impossible Foods’s plant-based sausage.

“We’re pleased to add the Impossible Breakfast Sandwich, made with Impossible plant-based sausage, to Starbucks’ menu in the US, to meet the growing customer-interest in plant-based options,” Mr. Kobori said. “Over the years, in response to customer interest, we have added plant-based milk alternatives such as soy, coconut, almond and oat milk. We are thrilled to expand our plant-based menu into food with this new breakfast sandwich.”

“Starbucks’ aspiration is to become resource positive. This aspiration ... has inspired the development of exciting and delicious plant-based beverages and food." — Michael Kobori, Starbucks

The Impossible Breakfast Sandwich joined three other new plant-based offerings on the Starbucks menu in June: the Cold Brew with Cinnamon Almondmilk Foam, Cold Brew with Dark Cocoa Almondmilk Foam and Cold Brew with Cinnamon Oatmilk Foam.

In January, Starbucks unveiled its first new beverages for 2020, and plant-based milk alternatives starred in all three: the Almondmilk Honey Flat White, Coconutmilk Latte and Oatmilk Honey Latte.

“Customers are looking for more ways to personalize their beverages,” said Raegan Powell, product developer for Starbucks, at the time of the launch. “We love how the nuanced flavor you get with plant-based milks pairs with espresso, either hot or iced. It’s a new way to start your new year.”

Other new plant-based offerings that joined the Starbucks menu this year include the Iced Guava Passionfruit Drink, Iced Golden Ginger Drink and Iced Pineapple Matcha Drink, all made with coconut milk.

View a slideshow of new Starbucks menu items.