Natural Nutrition for your family
These seasonal-limited-time-only drinks have some pretty sacred time limits. So, let’s enjoy Pumpkin Spice coffee drinks NOW before they’re replaced with eggnog and candy cane flavors. Yes – canned pumpkin and pumpkin pie spices are available year round, but who wants to drink a PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte) in June? It just wouldn’t taste the same.
It’s Halloween, and our household will be inundated with sugary trick-or-treat booty tonight. I may be Vitamin Mom, but I’m not going to deny my kids the annual tradition of dressing up, going to strangers’ homes and threatening them for candy. And I’m only human. One or two pieces of candy may end up in my belly. For the sake of their safety, I need to taste a sample…or two…from each kids’ stash. I call it a Candy Tax.
So with the extra sugar in our house, I certainly don’t need any extra sugar in my coffee drinks. I love coffee. This is not the time nor place for discussion on if drinking coffee is good or bad for you. Coffee is non-negotiable in my life.
My “functional” coffee (keep-me-from-falling-asleep-on-my-morning-drive) coffee is strong, bold and black. But occasionally, I love a decadent flavored coffee drink as a late afternoon pick-me-up treat.
This recipe is perfect. I drool over the PSL at coffee shops, but they are LOADED with sugar. With so many great all natural sweeteners, I decided to make my own. I made 2 versions. Both are vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free and no added sugar.
Version 1: This uses a natural sweetener, Xylitol which is currently my favorite. It takes just like sugar to me with no weird after taste. It also has some amazing health benefits (prevents cavities and ear infections). Read more about Xylitol here. Please note this is NOT a zero-calorie sweetener. It has about 1/3 fewer calories than sugar – so it’s a better option, but it still has some calories, so don’t eat a pound of it and expect to lose weight.
PSL Syrup: Combine the first 5 ingredients in a small saucepan. Heat to a simmer and stir well to ensure all ingredients are dissolved and well combined. Taste and adjust to suit your personal preferences. If it’s too sweet or too spicy, add some more milk. If it’s not sweet enough, add some more Xylitol.
If you’re ready for a PSL, pour some hot syrup into a cup of freshly brewed coffee. I saved mine in a small mason jar to use later and stored it in the fridge. It should make enough for 2-3 PSL’s – depending on how much syrup you use in each drink.
When I was ready for my PSL, I just poured some PSL syrup into a cup of freshly brewed coffee. I wanted my PSL to be steaming hot, so I popped the syrup (take the metal top off first!) into the microwave for a minute.
Version 2: This version does not require the use of a stove and uses Stevia as a sweetener. I used KAL’s Pure Stevia with Luo Han extract. It’s one of the best sellers at vitaminmom.com. You can read about Stevia, Luo Han and see customer reviews here. Stevia is a more concentrated sweetness, so you need less of it. If you haven’t used it before, add a little at a time and taste as you go so you don’t over-sweeten. It’s also very low calorie, so might be a good option for those watching their calories and/or blood glucose.
Add first 3 ingredients to hot coffee and stir well. Make sure your coffee is nice and hot so the ingredients dissolve and mix well. Add Almond Milk to taste, stir and enjoy!
I enjoyed my sugar-free PSL with a gluten-free chocolate chip cookie. These cookies are not only gluten-free, they are also free of peanuts, tree-nuts, milk and eggs. And it tasted great! They are a crispy (not chewy) cookie with a great texture with the perfect amount of chocolate chips in each cookie.
I’m giving away a box of these cookies! It’s not a paid promotion or anything – I just love the cookies and want to share. Leave a comment below on your favorite sweetener and I’ll select a winner at random. Be sure to leave your email so I know how to reach you.
Happy Halloween from Vitamin Mom!