Feast of Green
Cacao and Coffee Morning Elixir

Matcha is currently the star of the wellness blogger beverage realm, with plenty of health benefits to support its fame. (If you’re interested in learning more about or making your own matcha, I love Alison Wu’s guide – here.) However, morning matcha is one health trend I’m not quite ready for, as I’m still deeply in love with my coffee. What I have taken from the matcha movement is the idea of making my morning beverage into a potion of sorts…

As I wrote about here, I’m limiting my caffeine at the moment, so I’ve opted for a good quality decaf coffee, which I blend with all sorts of fun ingredients. After posting one concoction on an insta-story and receiving great feedback, I wanted to share the complete recipe as well as some health info here.

Coffee: Coffee tends to get a bad reputation, perhaps because it is often thought to be synonymous with caffeine. However, there has been quite a bit of encouraging research related to coffee consumption, which I wrote about here. (My favorite bit: there is evidence that habitual coffee drinkers have increased longevity compared to their counterparts.)

Coconut oil: The main reason that many people dislike decaf coffee is because of the taste. Decaf coffee actually does taste worse than caffeinated. This is because caffeine is stored in the fat molecules of coffee, which are removed in the process of decaffeination. (Fat = flavor.) By adding coconut oil to coffee, fats are replaced, and flavor improves. Additionally, fat in general, and particularly coconut oil helps to moderate appetite and improve satiety, keeping us full for longer. Coconut oil also seems to have positive effects on metabolism and HDL (“good”) cholesterol.

Cacao: Cacao, the bean that chocolate is derived from, is thought to be a “superfood” when not combined with the sugar and additives we typically consume it with. My favorite perk of cacao is that it is rich in magnesium, which promotes sleep and digestion, (among many other benefits), and is a common nutrient to be deficient in. It also contains iron, fiber, and a wealth of antioxidants. Although this morning elixir is not sweet, the chocolatey flavor gives it some excitement and a comforting sensation. (My favorite brands for organic and minimally processed cacao powder are this and this.  Avoid using dutch processed cocoa powder for optimal taste and health benefits.)

Himalayan sea salt: Aside from being beautiful and trendy, Himalayan salt is rich in minerals, which give it its gorgeous color. Adding these minerals to your morning beverage can aid in both digestion and hydration – a good start to the day! Salt in coffee may be off-putting initially, so start with a small dose and taper up if you grow to enjoy the flavor, (as I have!).

Add-ins: The options are limitless for morning elixir add-ins, so think of this recipe as a medium to experiment with some fun options. I put a few ideas that I’ve enjoyed, below.

  • 24 ounces (3 cups) brewed decaf coffee
  • 2 teaspoons – 2 tablespoons coconut oil (to taste)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons cacao powder (I use Navitas Organics brand)
  • 1/2 – 1 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt (to taste)
  • Dash cinnamon
  • Optional add-ins: collagen peptides, adaptogen or mushroom powders, cacao butter, sweeteners (honey, dates, maple syrup)

In a blender, combine all ingredients. Blend until well combined and frothy.

Makes about 3 servings.


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