Spice Up Your Coffee: Preservative-Free Homemade Coffee Creamers And More!

For some, a hot cup of morning coffee is the best part of waking up. It gets even better when delicious creamers are added to the mix. They are perfect for savoring seasonal flavors while lightening up your java. But when store-bought creamers boast a full roster of mysterious ingredients, you might be wondering if there is a healthier option.

This is where homemade coffee creamer recipes come in. By making your own, you can have full control over the ingredients. Moreover, you can adjust the flavors to fit your preferences and dietary restrictions. And with dairy-free foods becoming increasingly popular, it is worth checking out the list of nontraditional possibilities. To top it off, homemade coffee creamers are budget-friendly, healthy, and easy to make. Read on to learn how to do it yourself.

All About Nondairy Milks

In recent years, nondairy milks have become the highlight of the food industry. This surge in popularity is a result of increased consumer knowledge across several areas. People are learning more about the dairy industry and traditional production practices. Additionally, the health benefits of no-dairy alternatives have garnered significant attention. Consumers are embracing different types of diets, lifestyles, and preferences. Many are also acknowledging the prevalence of lactose intolerance, a condition impacting more than 65 percent of the world’s human population.1 Some individuals are allergic to dairy or simply do not like the taste. Thus, the industry has begun to focus on milks created from sources other than mammals.

Currently, the most popular nondairy options are soy, coconut, and almond milk. Many cafés and restaurants keep these options in stock. Other versions include cashew, rice, and pea protein milk. Unsurprisingly, these nondairy milks taste different from traditional cow’s milk. Each has a distinctive flavor that may take some getting used to. The consistency and color may also differ. And since these alternatives are specialty milks, the price points are often a bit higher. However, for most consumers, this is a decent trade-off for the nutritional value and dietary accommodations. It also makes it easier to enjoy foods that typically call for dairy – examples include oatmeal and milkshakes. And if you’re a coffee drinker, you’ll be happy to know that flavored creamers can also be made in the same way with nondairy milks.

How to Make Homemade Coffee Creamers

Store-bought creamers might be inexpensive, but they come with a price that doesn’t have to do with money. Often, they are full of preservatives, processed sugars, and sodium. Commercial creamers are typically dyed with artificial coloring; flavoring from real ingredients is seldom used. Luckily, you can make coffee creamer right in your own kitchen.

How To:

Over medium heat, combine 2 cups nondairy milk and 2-4 teaspoons of brown sugar, honey, or maple syrup in a stainless-steel pot. Feel free to adjust the amount of sweetener per your preference. Continue stirring until the liquid is uniform. Keep a close eye on the creamer to make sure it doesn’t boil. If you are making a flavored variation, simply mix in the additional ingredients indicated by the recipe.

Cinnamon Vanilla Creamer

This simple version brings together two classic favorites. The finished product will offer a medley of warm and cozy flavors that complement the best notes of coffee.

  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Pumpkin Pie Creamer

Embrace the best of autumn with this pumpkin pie version. This is a perfect quick fix when you’re craving a pumpkin spice latte. If you want to use the freshest ingredients possible, swap out the canned pumpkin with fresh butternut squash puree. The flavor is practically identical.

  • 2 tablespoons canned pumpkin puree
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Peppermint Vanilla Creamer

Take it up a notch with a generous dose of mint flavor. It’s an excellent way to create a holiday-inspired beverage on a chilly morning. Top it off with coconut whipped cream and dark chocolate flakes for a luscious treat.

  • 1 tablespoon peppermint extract
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Hazelnut Chocolate Creamer

Hazelnut is a classic creamer flavor that can be enjoyed all year round. You can also use almond extract instead of hazelnut for a slightly different taste.

  • ¼ cup dark chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon hazelnut extract
  • ½ tablespoon vanilla extract

Nontraditional Sweeteners

If your taste buds are craving more, you can add another sweetener. The traditional choice is white table sugar. These days, however, cafés and restaurants cater to consumers’ need for alternative options. For example, raw sugar is commonly available for people who want the most natural option possible. This sugar is the most earth-friendly as it requires the least processing and chemicals. Brown sugar, which contains molasses, boasts a distinct flavor that some love. Low-calorie artificial sweeteners such as Splenda and Equal have also become increasingly common. And while there have been debates regarding the safety of these synthetic sugars, they are widely available at food establishments.

Clearly, there are many choices out there. But when you are making a homemade coffee creamer, it’s likely that you also care about your sweetener of choice. If you want to leave room for experimentation, prepare your creamer with less sweetener than the recipe calls for. This way, you will have the space to adjust the taste with each cup.

Keep it simple with all-natural alternatives. Honey is simple, healthy, and tasty. Buy local honey whenever possible; it’s an easy way to support local beekeepers.

Agave nectar is sweeter than honey and doubles as an excellent option for vegans. Molasses does not have as many calories as white sugar and offers a distinctive taste that is adored by many. You can even opt for dairy-free butter made of olive or coconut oil. This new substitute has stolen the spotlight as a healthy choice that creates a creamy, luscious consistency. Maple syrup is another unique alternative. It is extremely high in sugar, however; it’s a good idea to use sparingly and mindfully.

As you can see, coffee offers ample room for customization. Don’t be afraid to play around with ingredients until you find a combination that works for your taste buds, preferences, and lifestyle. It’s a delicious way to bring out the best in every cup of coffee.

Original Article by PartSelect Lifestyle Blog

Written by Kirsten Nunez

Interview Series: Louise Bak Refshauge on ‘Bling Your Pen’

This week, we launched our much anticipated Market Place, a one-stop shop for all of your favorite diabetes-friendly products! In the Market Place we feature a variety of products from a variety of brands, but what they all have in common is the fact they were all created by Patient Entrepreneurs. These are individuals who are living with, or are affected by a chronic disease, in this case, diabetes.

We are thrilled to have partnered with Louise Bak Refshauge to bring you ‘Bling Your Pen,’ a DIY insulin pen case! We chatted with Louise to give you some insight as to how the product came about.

Bruna Petrillo: Hi Louise! Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your diagnosis with diabetes?

Louise Bak Refshauge: My name is Louise I am 38 years old, I am married to Lars and have a wonderful daughter who turns 14 this month. I was diagnosed with diabetes in 2010, and I still use a pen because that’s what I am comfortable with. There have been a lot of ups and downs, but my BLING cover always makes me smile. Diabetes is not just something you can eat yourself out of or go for a run, and then you don’t need insulin. No, we need it to keep us alive, and we use our pens a lot. So why not make it a little fun!

BP: Tell us a little bit about the inspiration behind ‘Bling Your Pen.’ How did you get the idea?

LBR: I got the idea for ‘Bling Your Pen’ when I was diagnosed with Type 1.5 diabetes, and needed insulin several times a day. I thought the insulin pens were a bit boring, and I came up with the idea to make a cover for my pen. I also have IBD (Crohns) and I have to have Humira wich is also a pen, and it could fit in there too. I Love BLING I mean Who doesn’t right! I am not one who will go somewhere else to take my insulin, I do it in public. And all of the sudden people were reacting, positively when they saw my pen case. Wow, what is that? And it started a great conversation, and broke tabu and old belives about diabetes.

BP: So you bling your own cases. How many designs do you have?

LBR: I sure do bling my own covers! I have 3 oor4 to change with, just like you would do with a cover for your phone . It makes my life with diabetes and IBD just a little bit more easy and puts a smile on my face everyday. I hope customers will have the same experience.

BP: I love them! I know you have taken this project to hospitals near you. Can you tell us about going to the hospitals and creating these pen cases with the children? What were their reactions? 

LBR: I talked to my diabetes nurse about it, and she loved it, and I said it would be awseome to do it with the children because there are a lot of options, boys could also ‘bling your pen,’ maybe with camouflage, footballs and so forth. I decided to make a few pieces, and ask around the type 1 community. I spoke both with women who had diabetes, and moms to girls who just hated to be different in a negative way. I made the Bling your pen covers for a couple of girls, and one of them told me, “now I am not negative different, but positive different,” because in school everybody was reacting in a positive way. And to make it yourself, especially with children, will maybe make it more fun and positive to have a cool cover for the pen.

BP: Is that why ‘Bling Your Pen’ is such a great product for children and adults alike?

LBR: ‘Bling Your Pen’ is a great product for children and teens just getting their disease. So much is changing in a very short time, and they just wish it would go away. With “Bling Your Pen,’ you can create a great and fun cover for your medicine pen, and make it fun even. Also, in a good way, it makes the child have a little bit of responsibility for diabetes. For adults, I believe out of my own experience, that it is great haveing a ‘Bling Your Pen’ cover, and it makes people around you more aware in a positive way, and what’s not to like about that?

BP: Exactly. Making diabetes a little more ‘fun’ is what we are trying to do with the Market Place! So, why did you choose to partner with Lyfebulb for this product?

LBR: I chose to sign up with Lyfebulb, because I learned about Karin Hehenberger in my experience as a judge for the Lyfebulb- Novo Nordisk Innovation Award. We both saw a potential in ‘Bling Your Pen.’ Lyfebulb is a truly great company, with a lot of great entrepreneurs making innovative devices /products to improve the lives in a positive way, for all kinds of chronic diseases. And, I myself was not able to get it out there, without the help and partnership from Lyfebulb.

BP: We are truly proud to partner with you on this project. What are your hopes for the future of ‘Bling Your Pen’?

LBR: My hope for the future is that ‘Bling Your Pen’ will be a great success all over the world because I truly believe this small cover can make a big difference, and put smiles on your own face and others too! I know it did for me, and it still does. I am a mentor for a 14-year-old girl, and she loves the cover, and now we even have covers that match!

BP: Thank you so much for chatting! We are excited for the future!

LBR: Lots of ‘Bling Your Pen’ love!

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