You know those people who literally live off of coffee? That definitely used to be me.
I vividly remember when I started to guzzle coffee my senior year of high school and my habit only grow worse when I got sick and lost all of my energy. Coffee became an integral part of my life and identity – it became not only a source of energy and comfort but also a way of connecting with some of my favorite people.
I first tried to give up coffee a few years ago at the urging of my nutritionist. I immediately noticed that caffeine actually makes me feel more tired (I think it is hard for my body to metabolize) and messes with my stomach and hunger levels, so I made the switch to decaf. I have been drinking decaf coffee for years now simply because I love the ritual and the taste, but lately I have fallen in love with a new morning beverage: the matcha latte.
What is matcha anyway? Matcha is a powdered form of green tea. To make traditional green tea, you steep the leaves and then discard them; to make matcha, you actually mix very finely ground green tea leaves with warm liquid and drink it all together. Because matcha is a very concentrated form of green tea, it is an extremely potent source of antioxidants called polyphenols, which have been shown to protect against various diseases and cancers, balance blood sugar, boost your metabolism, and provide anti-aging benefits.
Matcha does have caffeine (about the same amount as a small cup of coffee) but I personally have not experienced the same issues with caffeine from matcha that I typically experience with the caffeine from coffee. Since switching to matcha, I have noticed better energy, a more clear mind, and brighter skin, and others report similar benefits. I also have noticed now that even decaf coffee does not sit as well on my stomach (perhaps because of the acid?) so I save it for special occasions.
Here is the only slight problem: straight matcha tastes TERRIBLE. I do not like the taste of green tea and plain matcha tastes like really, really strong green tea. SO to get all of the benefits of matcha in a delicious morning beverage, I started to create delightful sugar-free, dairy-free matcha lattes. I can’t really claim this “recipe” as my own because it is so basic but people ask me for it ALL the time so here it is! Feel free to make it your own according to options listed below.
Also, a quick note on ingredients: the quality of the matcha you use makes a HUGE difference in taste so make sure you buy from one of the linked brands or another brand you trust – do your research. Also, you all know I am obsessed with collagen peptides (read about why here) but they are not absolutely necessary for this recipe. Feel free to omit or replace with a scoop of protein powder. Finally, be sure to use warm rather than hot water for this recipe as boiling water will burn the matcha and make it bitter. Enjoy!
Sugar-Free, Dairy-Free Matcha Latte Recipe (Paleo, Whole30 & Vegan Options)
- 1 scoop Vital Proteins Matcha Collagen OR 1 scoop matcha powder (this is my favorite brand I have found so far) + 1 scoop Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides (also available on Amazon) (omit collagen for vegan option)
- 1-2 Tbs coconut butter (Artisana is my absolute favorite)
- 1/2 tsp organic ceylon cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp reishi or other adaptogens (optional)
- 1 drop liquid stevia (omit for Whole30)
- 1 pinch sea salt
- 14 oz warm water
- Put all ingredients in a blender. Blend on high for at least one minute to make it nice and frothy.
Source for some of the matcha info: http://www.health.com/nutrition/what-is-matcha
This recipe was most definitely inspired by Lee from America, the matcha queen!