Dandelion Mocha – a homemade natural coffee alternative
During college, I would promptly fall asleep at 9:30pm unless I had a jolting dose of coffee coursing through my system. The night before a big paper was due, you wouldn’t hear me in my room tapping away at the computer keyboard. Nope, you’d find me at Starbucks getting a double shot espresso. Procrastination loves company, so I would sip expensive drinks with my friends as we avoided homework together. Then I’d swing back to my room and finally get to writing my paper. Without that coffee I would have slept through every good procrastinating moment.
I never got into a morning ritual with coffee. It simply became my emergency focus drug to stay up late and get work done.
Don’t get me wrong, I love the smell of coffee and will occasionally (once or twice a year) drink a tiny cup of Greek coffee, but otherwise coffee is not a big part of my life.
Considering the almost 5 million people who visit Starbucks daily, coffee is a major part of most people’s lives. Coffee makes the news regularly, but studies are always controversial. Some say it can cut your risk of dying while other research shows that coffee is dangerous and should be consumed at your own risk. What I can tell you is that while coffee contains antioxidants, it is acidifying. Our body has to steal alkaline minerals from our bones to stay neutral. Also, coffee has a stimulating effect on the adrenals that over time can tire them out, just like stress does. While I’m not one to take away anyone’s favorite food or drink, (just ask my clients about the healthy dessert recipes I email them), if coffee is giving you acid reflux or stomach troubles then by all means, opt for something natural. It’s not natural to have the shakes or a migraine before you drink that first cup or to fuel your body with stimulants instead of food.
As with anything you ingest, consider your individual reactions before paying attention to any study.
So, what’s so awesome and health promoting about this dandelion mocha?
-Has a stimulating and decongesting effect on the liver.
-Encourages optimal digestion with an array of bitter compounds to let the digestive organs know, “food is coming!”
-Stimulates the production of bile, which in turn helps to break down fat and allow for better absorption of nutrients.
Not to mention the cinnamon has blood sugar balancing effects, the organic cocoa brings antioxidants to the table, and the raw honey is helpful to those seasonal allergies!
For all the health benefits this soothing drink has to offer, it tastes delicious. It has a slight coffee-like bitter component while remaining mild and earthy.
I noticed the taste is even stronger the next day, so if you can make enough for 3 or 4 days, it reheats beautifully and the flavor intensifies.
Yield: 2 servings
This is an adapted recipe from Kami McBride’s, The Herbal Kitchen. Kami is an inspiration in the kitchen and transforms medicine into food. She has helped countless people wean themselves off coffee with this health promoting drink. Remember, whatever your warm winter drink of choice, pay attention to how your body responds.
2 T cocoa powder (or cocoa nibs)
1/2 C coconut milk (I used Native Forest)
2 T raw honey
1/2 tsp cinnamon powder
1. In a medium saucepan simmer the dandelion root and cocoa in 3 cups of water for 30 minutes. Strain and return liquid to saucepan. Discard or compost dandelion root.
2. Then add all remaining ingredients, stir to combine and reheat as necessary.
That’s it! I hope you’ll try this warm refreshing drink and let me know what you think, especially those die hard coffee fans out there.
Do you drink coffee? Let me rephrase that–do you attach an IV drip of coffee to your arm as soon as you wake up? Leave a comment and let me know
Other Natural Coffee Alternatives to check out: