Flavored coffee helped me during the final transition from sugary coffee drinks to drinking black coffee. This transition didn’t happen overnight for me and it probably won’t for you. What I found helped a TON was using flavored creamers and then flavored coffee. Read on to find out why you should brew flavored coffee, even if you aren’t planning on drinking your coffee black.
Don’t forget to grab your FREE copy of the Coffee Roast & Brew Guide! It has all of the secrets to brewing great coffee at home, with a bonus of showing you how to pair your coffee with different foods so you can enjoy coffee anytime and not just in the morning. Plus you’ll get on my monthly newsletter where I share new coffee spots, exclusive recipes, and other tips to make great coffee right at home!
Transitioning from sugar filled coffee to flavored coffee
When I was transitioning from sugar filled coffee drinks, which let’s be honest really didn’t have much coffee in them, I found flavored creamers were what saved me. I have never been a fan of super sweet drinks and really wanted to TASTE the coffee in the drinks I was paying $5.79 for. After all, I’m supposed to be paying for the coffee, right? Well not according to the big name coffee stops. The less coffee and more sugar they put in their drinks, the more likely you are to go back.
Truth bomb: it’s not the coffee that keeps you going back; it’s the sugar. Sugar addiction is real and a serious problem, but I’ll leave that topic for another post.
My next step was to start enjoying coffee black, with no sugar or cream; to really ENJOY the flavor of coffee and appreciate the origin. It was at the transition from flavored creamers that I realized I was beginning to enjoy coffee as it should be; free from any additives so I can really taste all of the flavors that develop in coffee. This is a big move jumping from sugar filled drinks to straight black coffee and I don’t advise it. It will shock your taste buds and you will go directly back to the sugar filled drinks, never to look back.
What I did first
My daily coffee drink on my way to work was usually a latte or mocha of some sort. It was typically the flavored kind so like 6 pumps of whatever syrup and full chocolate for the mocha. I really like the flavored drinks so when I began making my coffee at home, I started buying the flavored creamers. Coconut, vanilla, hazelnut, Irish cream, pumpkin, peppermint mocha, you name it, I tried it. They were JUST what I needed to make my own much less expensive coffee at home and save some money.
But then I read the labels of those tasty creamers…
When I decided to try flavored coffee
It was at this point that I had an epiphany. I was a representative for a small coffee company who produced a LOT of flavored coffee choices. Why do I need to buy flavored creamer when I can buy flavored coffee and use regular half and half or heavy whipping cream? Or almond milk or oat milk or any other kind of milk alternative?
I started brewing flavored coffee back in 2017 and instead of adding flavored creamer to my coffee, I used heavy whipping cream and a very small amount of sugar or sugar in the raw, less than a tsp per 20 ounce cup. Sometimes I would whip up the HWC, sweetened with a touch of sugar and vanilla, then put a dollop of it on top of my coffee. Other times, I would use sweetened condensed milk, which made a creamy, silky, sweet finish for my coffee.
After a while, I began to notice that when I did go to the coffee drive through, which wasn’t often, the drinks were unbelievably sweet, leading me to order them half sweet.
Was I detoxing from the sugar filled coffee drinks? I’m thinking yes. My taste buds were changing and not appreciating the sweetness anymore. My other senses were appreciating the smell of the flavor from the flavored coffee and the taste of coffee. Could I be starting to enjoy coffee?
What happened next
As the years went on, I continued to drink all types of coffee, flavored and non-flavored with my new favorite cream and sugar combo or sweetened condensed milk. I began exploring with coffee recipes, always cutting the sugar or syrups in half. One day and I don’t really remember when it was, I decided to not add anything to my coffee. And I enjoyed it. Thoroughly.
How do I drink my coffee now
Since the pandemic, when we all had to stay home for what seemed eternity, I have been drinking my daily coffee black. I order my flavored coffee from Door County Coffee Company in Wisconsin and when I want non-flavored coffee, I order locally from Fervent. I’ve been on a flavored coffee kick recently, especially during the summer where I can make flavored cold brew.
Drinking fresh roasted coffee black is very different than drinking restaurant brewed coffee black. Most restaurants don’t spend a whole lot of money on good coffee so you’re getting ground coffee that was roasted who knows when and has been sitting in a small plastic sealed bag for who knows how long. So when we go to breakfast or a hotel, I usually add a bit of cream and sugar.
There is no shame in asking where they get their coffee from and if they answer with anything besides “from a local roaster” then I know I’ll need to add a bit of cream and sugar to it.
What flavored coffees I drink at home
My most favorite flavored coffee is from Door County Coffee Company in Wisconsin. I have never actually been to Wisconsin, but Door County does ship and they roast very close to ship date. Their flavors range from vanilla to nutty, from chocolate to caramel, from fruity to non-flavors. I have some favorites like Sinful Delight, Pecan Cinnamon Buns, and I’m a sucker for their fall and winter flavors.
Their seasonal flavors are just that, so if you find a flavor you like which you want to enjoy longer than the holidays, I HIGHLY recommend you grab some before the season ends. Whole bean coffee in its original packaging, sealed, will be good for at least 6 months. Save $15 off your order and try it out for yourself!
I am always looking for other places with flavored coffee because I’m always looking for unique and tasty flavors. I found Stone Street Coffee when I was doing some research on other coffee brands who roast flavored coffee and I’m excited to get my order and report back! In the meantime, you can save $5 if you’d like to try it out with me!
This isn’t to say I don’t drink my coffee with anything as I love a good coffeehouse recipe here at home. But those are generally a treat, and not the norm. I also do add some flavored syrup (about a tsp) and some HWC to my cold brew because I like it a bit creamy and slightly sweet.
Don’t forget to check out my FREE resource of coffee bar tools in the Home Barista Essentials! You’ll find all my secret gadgets to making a great coffeehouse cup of coffee right at home!