Boba Smoothie Tropical Style

This tropical boba smoothie is packed with antioxidants and is dairy free!
Servings: 1
Jump to Recipe
Time: 10 mins

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This boba smoothie is made tropical style and is a quick and easy breakfast or afternoon refreshment! With sweet pineapple, creamy coconut, and fun tapioca pearls this smoothie is delicious, dairy-free, and makes a great grab-and-go meal.

A glass cup with black boba pearls in bottom and yellow smoothie inside.

If you have been on our site recently, you’ll notice we have a lot of boba tea recipes. Boba smoothies and bubble tea are our drinks of summer but it gets expensive buying these four to six-dollar drinks weekly. 

This is why we make them at home! Boba is really easy to make at home and it can be paired with any of your favorite drinks or smoothies. Dried boba pearls can be found online here or in your local Asian market. 

Now to the smoothie part of this boba smoothie, when envisioning the best kind of smoothie to pair with boba, we went tropical. This is not a play on a Tropical Smoothie Cafe smoothie, but it’s so good we think it should be on their menu!

Our smoothie is basically a virgin pina colada without all the sugar. Combine that with chewy tapioca pearls to make it the ultimate smoothie! So, let’s get drinking, I mean it’s five o’clock somewhere!


Want to check out our other boba pearl milk tea recipes? Try one of these!

Strawberry milk tea

Jasmine milk tea

Honeydew milk tea


Table of Contents



Ingredients and Substitutions

Overhead view of boba smoothie ingredients.

All substitutions are a 1:1 substitute unless otherwise noted.


Coconut milk: Coconut milk provides the liquid for this smoothie to make it smooth, creamy, and drinkable. Plus, it adds to the tropical vibes. Just be sure to use unsweetened and from a box.

Substitutions: Almond milk, oat milk, canned coconut milk (mixed), coconut water, or dairy milk can be used.


Coconut Cubes: These little cubes are so cool! They can be found in the refrigerated or frozen section of the store and they are just chunks of coconut. We found these at Walmart in the produce section.

Substitutions: Coconut cream (or the cream from the top of canned coconut) or coconut shavings can be used.


Vegan White Chocolate Chips: I always try to make things dairy-free if possible and dairy-free white chocolate chips have been a game-changer. We like to use these from Dee Best.

Substitutions: Any white chocolate can be used, including white chocolate chips, white chocolate syrup, or cacao butter.

Banana: One of the topical components! Bananas are very starchy which helps to strengthen smoothies and ensure they are creamy. Try using frozen bananas for an ice cream like smoothie.

Substitutions: Avocado or cool whip can be used. Avocado will turn this green and cool whip will result in much less nutritional value. 


Pineapple: Pineapple is the ultimate tropical fruit. It looks like it belongs in a jungle and it is the color of sunshine! 

Substitutions: Frozen or fresh mango, papaya, or dragon fruit can be used in place of pineapple. If using fresh fruit, add ½ a cup of ice to the recipe.


Boba: We used black tapioca pearls because they contrast really well to the white smoothie. Some dark ones are brown sugar boba, but these black pearls from amazon are just made with tapioca starch and no flavor.

Substitutions: Any type of boba balls can be used for bubble milk tea. This could be white, rainbow, strawberry, mango boba, or any other color or flavor. You can also get them in any size, but even with small pearls, you will likely need large straws to suck them up with the smoothie. We love these wide straws!


Agave: This is an optional ingredient for the smoothie as not everyone needs additional sweetener when using so much fruit and white chocolate. It is necessary for the boba, however, to ensure they do not stick together once cooked.

Substitutions: Maple syrup or honey can be used if you do not have agave.


How to Make this – Step by Step

Be sure to check the full recipe card at the bottom for exact measurements.


Step one: Make the boba by boiling water in a small saucepan. Add the boba pearls to the boiling water. Let cook for 3-5 minutes, until the boba floats to the top. Then strain out with a slotted spoon or strainer. Put these into your serving glasses and top with a splash of agave. Mix together to keep the boba pearls from sticking to each other. 

Black boba pearls in a strainer.

Step two: Add the coconut milk, coconut cubes, and white chocolate chips to a high-speed blender. Blend for 30 seconds or until smooth.


Step three: Add remaining ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth. Pour over boba and enjoy!

Pouring a yellow smoothie into a glass with black boba pearls in bottom.



This smoothie is awesome because you can customize it to whatever flavors you love most! Here are just a few more ideas.

Strawberry Banana Smoothie –  To make this recipe, simply swap out the pineapple for strawberries!

Mango Smoothie – For a mango smoothie, swap out the pineapple for mango.

Watermelon Smoothie – Another easy variation. Just use frozen watermelon in place of pineapple and bananas. The result is a super creamy watermelon smoothie!

No Boba – While boba is very fun, it is not necessary. The smoothie will be delicious without them.


Watch How to Make This – Step by Step


Joy Tip!

When using white chocolate chips in a smoothie recipe, it must be blended with some liquid before adding all the ingredients. This ensures that it is fully blended and smooth and therefore resulting in a smoothie whose ingredients are evenly distributed and delicious!


Facts and Common Questions

What is a boba smoothie?

A boba smoothie can be tea, milk, ice, and a sweetener shaken together and strained over tapioca pearls, or it can be any smoothie served with boba. 

Are bubble tea smoothies healthy?

It depends. Many have added sweeteners or high caffeine content. Ours uses white chocolate chips but it also has tons of antioxidant-packed fruits like pineapple, banana, and coconut.


Is this boba smoothie vegan?

It can be. Not all dairy-free chocolate chips are vegan and not all tapioca pearls are vegan. If you make sure both of these are, then yes it is a vegan smoothie.


Are tapioca pearls sweet?

They can be. It depends on the type of boba pearl. Some are made with just tapioca starch, while others are made with fruit or brown sugar.


Want to Save it for Later?  Here’s how!

Unfortunately, smoothies do not keep very well, but boba does! Here’s how to save them. Just remember, fresh boba will always be the best!


For tapioca pearls – store the pearls in a homemade simple syrup of 1 part water, and 1 part sugar. The pearls should be fully submerged. They will keep for 72 hours refrigerated. If they begin to harden, you can throw them back into a boiling pot of water for a couple of minutes until they are softened and chewy again.


For the smoothie: The smoothie can be kept in the fridge for one day, sealed. It will likely separate as stored. When you want to enjoy it, just reblend to combine well.



Fun Fact

Tapioca Pearls are made from a root called Cassava, which is also known as yucca. More specifically, the balls are made of starch that’s taken from this root. Cassava has thick brown skin with a white interior. The root comes from Brazil and is grown in tropical regions. (source)


More Joyful Recipes!

Since I already gave you some milk tea recipes, check out these other awesome smoothie recipes!

Strawberry Matcha Smoothie

Peanut Butter Avocado Smoothie

Black Raspberry Lemonade Smoothie

Did you try this and love it? Leave us a review, we would love to hear from you!

A glass full of yellow smoothie and black boba pearls in the bottom.

Boba Smoothie (Tropical Style)

Servings: 1
Total Time: 10 minutes
This boba smoothie combines a sweet and creamy tropical smoothie base with chewy tapioca pearls for a fun and refreshing drink!
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Asian
Keyword: boba, pina colada, smoothie, tapioca pearls
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Calories: 672 kcal


  • 4 oz coconut milk unsweetened
  • 1/4 cup coconut chunks
  • 1 tbsp white chocolate chips (dairy-free if desired)
  • 1 banana
  • 1 cup pineapple frozen
  • 1 tsp agave
  • 2 tbsp tapioca pearls


  • Make the boba: Boil water and add pearls to the boiling water. Once they float (about 3-5 minutes), strain them out with a slotted spoon or mesh strainer. Transfer to serving glasses and top with a splash of agave and stir to keep the from sticky.
    Black boba pearls in a strainer.
  • Add the coconut milk, coconut chunks and chocolate chips to a blender and blend until smooth, about 30 seconds.
    Adding a banana to a plastic cup with other ingredients in it.
  • Add remaining ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth. Pour over boba and enjoy!
    Pouring a yellow smoothie into a glass with black boba pearls in bottom.



Nutritional information is an estimate and for informational purposes only.


Calories: 672kcal | Carbohydrates: 94g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 31g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 22mg | Potassium: 926mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 171IU | Vitamin C: 93mg | Calcium: 56mg | Iron: 6mg
Did you try this? We'd love to hear how it went. Please leave a review below! Or, follow and tag us on Instagram!Mention @_Joytothefood_ or tag #joytothefood!


  1. Laura

    5 stars
    Very refreshing and easy!

  2. Barb

    5 stars
    This hit the spot and the boba was a great addition

  3. Brit

    5 stars
    Thanks for sharing, this was a yummy drink.


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Welcome to Joy to the Food! We’re so glad you’re here. We’re Mika and Dan, and the two Nalas (our spunky pups). We’re all about easy and affordable recipes that bring joy to the kitchen and make life stress free!