It’s not coffee.
Just thought I’d put that out there from the very beginning.
Anyone who tries to convince you that there’s such thing as a “coffee substitute” is either on drugs or needs some drugs. #yesimbeingoverlydramatic
Trying to convince myself that there’s an exact substitute for any of the foods I love but don’t tolerate is just cruel. Instead, I try to find new alternatives that hit the same spot: sweet, bitter, warm, fresh, savory, etc.
I could tell you all about how much I used to love coffee, but I’ve already done that. Water under the bridge.
A roasted dandelion tea latte hits the “warm, slightly bitter, wrap-your-hands-around-a-mug-of-something-delicious” spot in the morning for me.
I started off with these tea bags* just to see if I liked the taste. It was ok, but I definitely needed two bags per mug to get it dark enough. (My definition of a “mug” is probably closer to beer proportions than coffee, FYI.)
I added hemp milk, and I knew I was on to something.
I liked it enough that I knew the double tea bag deal was not going to be sustainable, so I bought a new French press* (my kids broke my other one, and I figured if I didn’t replace it, I wouldn’t be tempted to make coffee in a pinch… I also have this one* now that has no plastic parts inside until you pour.)
So I made what felt like a big commitment, and I bought a bulk bag of roasted dandelion root* from Amazon.
Let’s just say that the French press and bulk dandy root is the way to go, hands down.
What’s so great about dandelion tea, besides the fact that it’s delicious?
Dandelion root is well known for its liver detoxifying effects, and I can attest that the purported diuretic and diaphoretic effects are also legit. (Peeing and sweating, gosh that DOES sound like coffee!)
I went down a super interesting Internet Research Rabbit Hole about dandelion leaf and root being used in different forms for all kinds of indications including blood sugar control in diabetics. Interesting, but not something I’m going to get into here. There was a lot more research than I anticipated!
On to the process. Here’s what I do. Roughly. We all know I don’t usually measure…
- Put 2 T roasted dandelion root* (ground a bit more in a coffee grinder if possible) in a French press “coffee” maker*
- Fill to lip with boiling water (some say to use very hot water, which I only do if I forget the kettle for a bit before pouring)
- Steep for 5-10 minutes, or longer for stronger
- In the meantime, make some hemp milk creamer:
- Use a high-powered blender if you have one (I’m in love with my Vitamix*)
- Blend together:
- NOTE: if you need to heat up anything made with hemp milk/creamer, heat as little as possible. It will curdle and do super weird stuff if you get it hot!
- When the tea has steeped to your strength preference (or you remember that you made it an hour ago and it’s now tepid), mix it together in a mug with:
- Add 1/8 t marshmallow root powder* (I was taking this as a supplement and happened to put it in my tea one day, and I really liked the added flavor!)
- Add ¼ t vanilla extract*
- Add cacao butter wafers* if you want to be fancy
- On the rare occasion I add cacao butter, I blend in the Vitamix or a Magic Bullet* to make sure it gets creamy and not weirdly oily!
- YES, it is very good iced!! (not with cacao butter, though)
- It may get frothy. You may like frothy. I actually don’t. Foam grosses me out, but if that’s your thing, enjoy it!
So if you need to try something vaguely reminiscent of coffee but without caffeine or a coffee intolerance reaction, try dandelion tea and let me know what you think. Bonus liver detox!
Love it? Gonna thank me profusely? Hate it? Did you waste a few bucks? Drop me a comment!