Ok. It’s time to break out of the box that coffee has become for us. How many times do you hear people say: “I just can’t function without my morning coffee”?
We don’t know about you, but to us, that sounds slightly on the unhealthy side. Fortunately, PlantX is here to show you that there’s another way. Cue vegan coffee substitutes!
What’s wrong with coffee?
Don’t get us wrong, we love organic coffee. The smell, the earthy taste, the boost of energy. However, like everything, it is undeniable that coffee comes with a set of drawbacks.
Granted, it tastes and smells amazing, but we all remember the coffee breath of our secondary school teachers: you have to admit, it isn’t the best drink for fresh smelling breath.
Furthermore, it may provide you with a welcome boost of energy, but that brief high is often followed by a low. Otherwise known as… The coffee crash. Sometimes a coffee crash can make you feel hollow and even more tired than you had done before drinking the coffee in the first place.
So perhaps you’re disillusioned with your dependency on caffeinated coffee, but the prospect of giving it up altogether is just too awful to fathom. We hear your cries. “How on earth will I get through the working day?!”. Read on to find out more!
Is coffee vegan?
In short, yes. Coffee is derived from completely plant-based coffee beans. However, if you like to have milk with your coffee, it’s best to choose from the huge range of plant-based milk on the market these days. Something like Minor Figures Organic Barista Oat Milk is great for this.
Why try a vegan coffee substitute?
We’ve got your back. Luckily, you don’t have to go completely cold turkey. The wonderful world of vegan coffee substitutes is here to provide an exciting and energising alternative to standard coffee.
When we realised that we could get an energy kick from a rich and earthy hot drink which wasn’t coffee, we simply couldn’t believe our luck.
‘So… you’re saying we’ll be able to get through our day’s work without bad breath and the shakes?’.
Oh, yes. PlantX is here to take you through some of the greatest vegan coffee substitutes and their benefits.
Rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it? Chicory is derived from the root of a plant belonging to the dandelion family. Strangely similar to coffee in terms of taste and appearance, many people have turned to Chicory as an easy coffee substitute.
Widely available in health food shops, Chicory is relatively accessible to get hold of. It’s one of the most popular vegan coffee substitutes, too.
At PlantX, we love Barleycup’s Organic Chicory Cup. It’s just like instant or ground organic coffee - simply add hot water and any plant-based milk of your choice. Rich, complex in flavour and extremely comforting, Barleycup’s is a good place to start.
Good source of inulin & healthy bacteria
Chicory contains high levels of inulin: a form of carbohydrate called a fructan. Research has shown that inulin can be extremely beneficial for gastric health and can even help balance glucose and insulin in the body.
Also known to promote the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut, chicory seems to be a lot easier on the stomach than caffeinated coffee. And we all know coffee can be pretty harsh on ones’ digestive system!
Well, we all know mushrooms can be magic. But do you know the extent of nutritional benefits that comes with the fantastic fungi? Not only are they superfoods, but they are also delicious vegan coffee substitutes.
Immune boosting & anti-cancer properties
A type of mushroom, Chaga has been historically used as herbal tea to boost immunity. High in antioxidants, fibrous and delicious, Chaga is a potent source of precious nutrients.
Research has shown that Chaga possesses cancer-preventing and slowing properties. How about that to give you a spring in your step in the morning!
Four Sigmatic have really spearheaded the movement of mushrooms as a vegan coffee substitute. Their Mushroom Elixir Mix with Chaga is a favourite of ours. Not sure if you’re not quite ready to kick your coffee habit completely? Four Sigmatic has come up with some pretty exciting blends of nutritious mushrooms with caffeinated coffee. Give Mushroom Coffee Mix with Lion’s Mane and Chaga if that’s a bit more up your street.
Lion’s mane mushrooms
Not just spectacular to look at, Lion’s mane mushrooms are known to have some impressive health benefits, too.
Good for the brain & may help with anxiety and depression
Research shows that Lion’s mane mushrooms contain compounds that can encourage our brain cells to grow. This rather glorious mushroom has been linked to improvement in memory and general cognitive functioning - making it absolutely ideal for your daily morning routine.
Studies in animals have shown the power of lion’s mane’s anti-anxiety and anti-depressant effects, although evidence is currently limited in how this magnificent mushroom affects humans in this way. Watch this space!
Lion’s mane mushroom makes for a fantastic addition to a vegan coffee substitute. I mean, who doesn’t want to wake up their brain? Again, Four Sigmatic has produced a sumptuous and nutrients-packed coffee alternative: the Superfood 10 Mushroom Blend. Give it a go and enjoy the lift in your mood from the almighty mushroom!
A humble option, Caro’s Instant Cereal Beverage provides the warm hug of a mug of coffee but without the epic highs and lows of caffeine.
You can’t go wrong with a smooth cup of Caro in the morning to start the day. Full-bodied, rich and creamy, Caro makes for an excellent vegan coffee substitute. Containing chicory, Caro is an excellent source of inulin and known to have anti-inflammatory properties.
Can lower cholesterol & manage blood sugar levels
Additionally, Caro contains barley malt and rye, ingredients that are extremely fibrous and promotes better digestion.
Research shows that barley malt can potentially reduce cholesterol in the blood, which has been known to help lower the risk of developing particular heart diseases.
Similarly, as well as being great for our digestive system, rye has the potential to help the body control its blood sugar levels.
In a nutshell
Well, well. If the world of vegan coffee substitutes were previously uncharted waters, we hope you feel a little more in the loop now. Remember, we are not chained on coffee to keep us functioning. There are so many other ways to stay energised and engaged without having to experience the pitfalls of caffeinated coffee!
Chicory, mushrooms, and Caro. We’ve shown you just three examples of vegan coffee substitutes to keep your mood high and your health in great shape. There’s plenty more out there. Go, explore, and maybe one day you’ll cut the chord with coffee!