Peppermint Mocha- RFS!

Well, I did it! After searching and searching and tweaking, I finally found a recipe for peppermint mocha that is free of refined sugar AND absolutely hits the spot! I truly had my doubts and was starting to believe I’d have to live the entire season without one. Praise Jesus, I do not!

Now, I’ll be honest, it does not taste identical to sbucks. However, the flavors are perfect and there is even a hint of sweetness that leaves you wanting more. I am hooked and you will be too!

Ingredients
1.5 T cocoa powder
3 T pure maple syrup
1 tsp raw honey (optional but adds a touch more sweetness)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp peppermint extract
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk ( could also use coconut milk or regular)

In a medium saucepan mix powder, syrup, honey and milk together over medium heat. Continue to heat until completely mixed and warmed. Then, remove from heat and add in extracts. Allow creamer to cool to room temperature and store in an air tight container for up to one week.

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While mixture is cooling make your espresso. I made two shots of espresso. Pour into mug and spoon 3 TB of peppermint creamer and mix. I then steamed about 3/4 cup of almond milk in my frother and poured on top. You could also just add your creamer to a cup of coffee. Either way, it’s a perfect Christmas treat without all the yuckiness of refined sugar and other mystery ingredients.

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National Coffee Day- Homemade Frappucino!

So, apparently yesterday was National Coffee Day, thank you social media for informing me of this! Not that I need a reason to indulge in coffee beverages. But none the less I took part in the coffee drinking day and decided to try a new Frappucino recipe from none other than the Pioneer Woman herself. Thank you Ree, you never disappoint!!

ingredients
* 8 ounces of Espresso or strongly brewed coffee-chilled
* 6 ounces Milk
* 1/4c sweetened condensed milk
* 1 tsp vanilla
* 1/4c chocolate syrup
* ice

Once your espresso is chilled, pour into a blender. Top the coffee with all the ingredients. Add ice. I was not sure how much I would need, so I added enough to fill to the top of liquid. And then another cup on to that.

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Blend until desired consistency. I added a few more tablespoons of milk to make it a tad more creamy. And boom, a delicious coffee treat to get you from 2pm until (kid) bedtime😉.

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I have to admit I’m not usually a Frappucino girl. I’m more iced latte. But this was awesome!! Creamy and smooth with the perfect mocha taste. Amazing for the 80 degree “Fall” weather we’ve been experiencing! Enjoy!!

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Pumpkin Spice Latte- A sure sign it’s fall!

Well, kicking and screaming, summer has ended! And I can honestly say I’m embracing fall (it is truly my FAVORITE season-just not a fan of the season it leads too 😉). With the school year starting for Ms. L and already a handful of cooler mornings (rushing in the frenzy of what pants/long sleeves fit the girls), it really feels like autumn!

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As promised, I found and have made a Starbucks Copycat Pumpkin. Spiced. Latte! Yes, nothing says fall like a PSL in my book! And friends, I have yet to buy one from sbucks!!

IMG_8301.JPG Not saying I won’t (because I will, I’m sure) I just don’t find it necessary. This recipe is fantastic and nearly spot on!

Pumpkin Spice Latte Recipe
4 oz Espresso or strongly brewed Coffee
1 cup steamed milk
2 TB Pumpkin Syrup (recipe below)

Pumpkin Syrup
1 1/2 c water
1 1-2 c super fine sugar ( I just used food processor)
4 cinnamon sticks
2 heaping TB pumpkin purée
1/2 tsp cloves
1/2 tsp ginger
1 tsp nutmeg

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Heat water and sugar over medium-high heat until sugar is dissolved. Stir frequently. Add in all the spices and pumpkin purée. Simmer for 8 minutes, stirring frequently.

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Remove from heat and strain using a mesh strainer. Once liquid has cooled
Place in an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to one month.

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Once your syrup has been made pour two tablespoons into the bottom of your mug. Pour espresso on top and stir. Froth milk and pour over your espresso. Sprinkle a little nutmeg on top and there ya go! ( you could also add whip cream).

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This recipe will not only save you a lot of $$$ you’d otherwise be throwing away at Starbucks, it also isn’t filled with all the yucky mystery ingredients the other PSLs have in them! Enjoy this sure sign of fall.

Game-Changer!!

We just inherited a brand new ESPRESSO MACHINE!!! Our neighbors are moving and wanted to get rid of their never-been-used-machine, we gladly took it off their hands😉

20140529-133130-48690116.jpg This, my friends, is a game-changer!!🙌

I like love adore my Starbucks drinks! There is something about a caramel macchiato that can restart a crazy/tired morning. Or sipping an iced latte in the hot summer- mmm perfection! But the price tag!!! I only indulge maybe twice a month, but at $5 a pop for a venti ( I’m a mom of three kiddos- it’s venti or bust) it’s such a money sucker! So, as you can imagine, from the moment I opened up the box and pulled out the machine, I was on Pinterest searching for any copycat Caramel Mach recipe I could find.

In the past few days I think I have found the one. It’s simple, stays true to the decadent layered form and is less than 200 calories! Decided to share it with ya’ll. I mean, this is goinghomemade and what better way to go homemade than through a homemade espresso slice of heaven?!

ingredients
2-4 shots of espresso
1c milk, steamed
2 TB caramel syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract

👊👊👊 that’s all you need!

First pour your caramel syrup in the bottom of your mug. We are just using Smuckers brand. Next, using our machine I brew about 2-3 shots of espresso. Espresso grinds are best but we are using up our dark caribou coffee beans, they actually do the trick well! (I’m sure I will come back and post about a fav blend once we have discovered it- open to all suggestions).

Pour espresso over syrup and mix with a metal spoon until dissolved. Then pour vanilla extract on top of espresso. some recipes called for a vanilla syrup, but I prefer the extract-less sugar. Using your steamer froth until your desired temp. Pour milk over vanilla and top with the milk froth. Drizzle a little more caramel and enjoy!!!

20140529-141549-51349505.jpg Like I said game changer! Want it iced? Do everything the same except for steaming milk+add some ice and ta da!

Look back around the fall and winter. Because you better believe I’ll be perfecting my Starbucks PSL and Peppermint Mocha!
Would love to hear any of your fav drinks+ recipes!