7 Ways to Upgrade Your Coffee... Without Sugar!


Coffee with cream and sugar, café con leche, café au lait…  This classic coffee combination is popular in both America and abroad.  People have been adding cream or milk and sugar to their coffee for quite some time, and it’s no wonder, the combination is certainly delicious. But with the potential negative effects of coffee and caffeine plus the added sugar and calories from milk or cream, this classic morning beverage isn’t exactly the definition of health.

If you’re looking to make your morning just a little bit healthier, but not ready to give up coffee completely, there are several delicious options!

Try these coffee upgrades on their own or combine several at a time for a delicious and satisfying cup a’ joe!

Cinnamon: Cinnamon has been shown to help regulate blood sugar, protect against diabetes and improve brain function. [1] On top of it’s health benefits, cinnamon also compliments the flavor of coffee and can be used along with some of the other upgrades below!

Coconut Oil: Coconut oil can be added to coffee for its nutritional benefits but it’s also a surprisingly delicious alternative to milk or cream. Sure, it may not turn your coffee a lighter color but it will give your cup of coffee a silky smooth texture that will actually taste creamy. Coconut oil is also a great source of healthy fats and can provide sustained energy all day long. [2]

Unsweetened Cacao Powder: Healthy mocha anyone? Raw cacao powder is high in anti-oxidants [3] and can turn your boring cup of coffee into a chocolatey morning treat. Try combining it with coconut milk (listed below) for a satisfying dairy and sugar free mocha alternative!

Coconut Milk: Coconut milk makes a fantastic dairy-free and low sugar alternative to milk or coffee creamier. Nut milks like cashew and almond are normally a bit too thin for coffee, but coconut is especially creamy and matches the texture of half and half or creamer. Add a drop after you’ve poured your coffee or steam it latte style! Coconut milk pairs perfectly with some of the other upgrades on this list such as cinnamon, cacao powder, cardamom and vanilla extract.

Butter or Ghee: Often dubbed “bulletproof coffee,” this favorite among the paleo community (which also includes coconut oil and collagen) is gaining popularity at eateries and coffee shops across the country. Although a new concept in America, Butter Tea, also known as “po cha”, has been made in Tibet and surrounding Himalayan regions for centuries. The addition of melted butter or ghee to coffee has been said to boost energy levels and the beverage has been used as a meal replacement among wellness experts. [4]

Cardamom: Other than adding a delicious, warm spice to your morning coffee similar to chai, cardamom is commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine and is known to neutralize the stimulating effects of caffeine. [5] Combine cardamom, cinnamon and coconut milk for a low sugar and dairy free dirty chai.

Vanilla Extract: Any vanilla latte lovers out there? Vanilla extract is a fantastic, low sugar and dairy free alternative to a traditional vanilla latte. Add in some coconut milk for a creamy vanilla treat!


[1] Sass, Cynthia, MPH, RD. “5 Reasons to Love Cinnamon”. Health.com. 21 November 2014. Web. 9 September 2014.

[2] “The Many Benefits of Coconut Oil”. Wellness Mama: Simple Answers for Healthier Families. Web. 9 September 2014.

[3] Marie, Joanne. “Antioxidant Benefits of Raw Cacao”. SFGate. Web. 9 September 2015.

[4] Elaine, Lisa. “Why Wellness Experts are Putting Butter In Their Coffee”. Prevention.com. 13 March 2014. Web. 9 September 2015.

[5] Douillard, John. “Spice Makes Nice”. Yoga Journal. 17 October 2008. Web. 9 September 2015. 

RecipesAnya KaatsComment