Hazelnut. French Vanilla. Toasted Marshmallow. White Mocha. The list of heavenly flavors is endless. The day I met flavored coffee – my life as a mom – was complete. There’s nothing I love more (Ok, maybe the children but this comes in at a close second)!
The problem is… I started wondering how they make flavored coffee. This led me to google and the start of a deep, dark depression. So before I go and break your heart, beware and let me just say – please don’t shoot the messenger!
Here’s What I Found
The cheapest and easiest way for companies to make flavored coffee involves the use of artificial flavoring and a synthetic chemical spray known as propylene glycol. This spray works to hold the flavor molecules to the coffee beans. Propylene glycol is very versatile and found in a host of consumer products such as shampoo, hair styling products, and antifreeze. That’s right! ANTIFREEZE! This is a scary way of saying that propylene glycol is a water-soluble compound with a lower freezing point than water. It works to keep our coffee from clumping together while still retaining moisture. It’s said to be non-toxic and easily metabolized by the body.
So while it’s not all that bad (you can breathe again) – this information still has me all like “WAH!” because I love my flavored coffee. I don’t really want to ingest the added chemicals if I don’t have to! So I continued my research…
While I’m not into the fake sugars and added calories of flavored creamers, there are other ways to add flavoring to your coffee.
Spices: You can add cinnamon, nutmeg, and pumpkin to your regular coffee.
Extracts: I bet a little dash of vanilla extract in your coffee would taste amazing!
Buy Organic: There are some organic brands of coffee that use only natural oils and extracts added to their fresh coffee beans. All of these products were available on Amazon and reasonably priced! Deans Beans is an organic coffee that is very upfront about how they process their beans. The Organic Coffee Company and Barrie House looked like another two promising options with flavors such as chocolate almond and caramel macchiato. And last (but not least) if you’re a Keurig lover like me – you have options too! EkoCups are available in different flavors and you can feel better knowing that the cups are good for the environment too!
I have not had the opportunity to try these brands, but if you have – leave me some feedback! I would love hear from you and your experience in the comments.