You might find it odd to have an article on coffee alternatives on a coffee lovers website. Some might call it sacrilegious. The truth is that while coffee is by far the greatest drink on the planet, there are times when a break from coffee can be necessary. Whether it's for health reasons or just to lower your caffeine intake, sometimes you just need a small break from coffee.
Top Coffee Alternatives 2021
MUD / WTR
Teonan Organic Coffee
In the world of coffee substitutes and coffee alternatives, there are many options available. Coffee substitutes have come a long way in the last decade and many unique coffee alternatives have been introduced. As mentioned already, there are many reasons why you would be looking at a coffee substitute. Maybe you are simply just trying to kick the habit of drinking coffee every day – or maybe coffee is too acidic for your stomach. Maybe you are newly pregnant and need to avoid caffeine. In any case, finding the right coffee substitute is essential to insuring a smooth transition away from coffee. You want to find something that tastes great, provides a similar sensation as drinking coffee, and if you aren’t trying to avoid caffeine – gives you the buzz of a cup of coffee.
Check out our following list of the best coffee alternatives to see which one is right for your needs. Keep in mind that each person's expectations of what a coffee substitute should taste like naturally varies.
Coffee Alternatives: Golden Coffee
If you are struggling with the acidity of normal roasted coffee, a good coffee substitute is golden coffee. Golden coffee is super lightly roasted coffee that is only one step away from the green coffee beans themselves. The end result of golden coffee is a very lightly roasted brew that does not have the burnt and bitter after taste of normally roasted coffee beans.
This ultra-light roasting process creates a distinctly unique coffee flavor with a light golden color to the brew. You can drink golden coffee either hot or iced and the smell of the brew is very similar to a normal cup of coffee. If you are looking for something that tastes like coffee, smells like coffee, and does not have the acidity and bitterness of coffee, then golden coffee could be the perfect coffee substitute for you. Some say golden coffee say it tastes more like tea while others say it tastes like a mild coffee.
There are many benefits to golden coffee. For starters, gold coffee does not stain your teeth. Its lightly roasted beans produce a brew that is dentist friendly and if you are constantly worried about coffee staining your teeth, gold coffee is a perfect substitute. Furthermore, just because golden coffee is brewed from ultra-lightly roasted does not mean the coffee is without substantial caffeine content. In fact, some brands of gold coffee have even more caffeine than your average cup of coffee. This means if you are looking for a coffee substitute that still has plenty of caffeine to kick start your day, golden coffee provides a great option for you.
Golden Ratio Coffee
Golden Ratio coffee is ultra light roasted coffee that delivers a soothing flavor. 5 times less acidic than regular black coffee, this coffee offers a good balance of caffeine and flavor. It contains 60mg of flavor so it can be of great help for those looking to lower their caffeine intake over time.
For more information on this particular brand, check out our full Golden Ratio Coffee review.
Coffee Alternatives: Mushroom Coffee
Mushroom coffee is increasingly becoming one of the most popular coffee substitutes. Mushroom coffees come in a variety of blends and flavors depending on what types of mushrooms are used in the blend. The most popular blends of mushrooms include: Reishi mushroom, Chaga mushroom, Lions mane mushroom, and Cordyceps mushrooms.
A common question for those just learning about mushroom coffee is “How exactly is mushroom coffee made?”
Mushroom coffee is made from mushrooms that go through a drying and extraction process to pull all of the beneficial compounds out of the mushrooms. From there, the mushrooms are blended to create a mushroom mix that it used to create mushroom coffee. It is important to note that most mushroom coffee blends today contain some instant coffee in them, which is why they taste very similar to coffee themselves. You can find some mushroom coffees without coffee in them, but just be mindful of this if you are looking for a true coffee substitute. The end result is a really great “earthy” tasting cup of coffee that has all of the added benefits of the nutrient-filled fungi.
There are a lot of claims about mushroom coffee and its added health benefits. Some of these include better sleep, reduced stress, boost to immune system, improved memory, increased energy levels, and reduced inflammation. Some of these hold merit, but be sure to take all of these health benefits with a grain of salt. The best way to see how mushroom coffee benefits you is to try a blend yourself and see how it makes you feel.
If you are looking for a low acid, lower caffeine, coffee substitute then mushroom coffee might be the best option for you. However, if you are trying to completely avoid coffee altogether, be cautious of which type of mushroom coffee you select as some of these do contain regular coffee in them.
We've selected three mushroom coffee brands that produce exceptional flavor while conferring equally impressive health benefits.
Wild Crafter Coffee
Wildcrafter Coffee makes this list of best coffee alternatives for a number of a reasons. I love the fact that it's a quality low acid coffee that offers the deep health benefits of mushrooms. Their Immune Shield in particular contains Reishi Mushrooms and is also supplemented by Elderberry Fruit and Astragalus (not to be confused with asparagus). This coffee is meticulously formulated to strengthen your immune system and enhance your body's natural stress response. And most importantly, it tastes really good. This coffee alternative contains 120mg of caffeine.
MUD / WTR
A wildly popular mushroom coffee, this is easily one of the celebrated mushroom coffees on the market. MUD / WTR is one of the tastiest coffee alternatives available. It offers a microdose of caffeine while delivering a wealth of health benefits. It contains a nutrient-rich blend of organic mushrooms including Lion's Mane, cordyceps, chaga, and reishi. You can rest assured that this coffee won't give the jitters. But rather, it will give you a natural focus and energy that you simply won't find with regular coffee. If you're looking to kick the caffeine habit, definitely check out MUD/WTR.
Teonan Coffee is a coffee alternative that includes both Lion's Mane and cordyceps. The Lion's Mane helps with cognition and mental acuity while the cordyceps enhances physical stamina. Lastly, this coffee alternative also includes probiotics to support gut health and boost gut flora. The company also sources organic Arabica coffee for a fullness bodied and robustly flavored coffee experience. This coffee packs 80mg of caffeine.
Coffee Substitute: Herbal Coffee
Herbal coffee is another great coffee substitute that comes in a variety of different blends. Perhaps the most popular type of herbal coffee is chicory coffee. Chicory herbal coffee is a brew that tastes similar to coffee, but is made from roasted chicory root. The process of making herbal coffee is not too unlike the process of roasting coffee beans either. The chicory root is roasted, ground, and then used to brew a coffee substitute beverage. The end result is a beverage that tastes just like coffee, but does not include the caffeine and acidity of a normal cup of coffee. The flavors of a cup of chicory herbal coffee are of a woody and nutty flavor – it tastes similar to coffee, but is slightly different in its flavor profile.
Chicory herbal coffee also does not contain any caffeine, but rather the energy boost from the brew comes from the herbal blend itself. Unlike decaf coffee, herbal coffee is “nocaf” meaning it contains no caffeine. Decaffeinated coffee will typically have a miniscule amount of caffeine in it. Chicory Herbal coffee is also completely acid free and contains less acid than low acid coffee.
Anthony's Chicory Root
Anthony's sources uses Chicocry Granules that are USDA Organic and Non-GMO. This coffee like other herbal coffees is 100% caffeine free. This coffee is nutrient-dense and contains copious amounts of fiber. Chicory Root has also been used in different ancient cultures to purify the liver and blood. While this brew can be enjoyed on its own, mixing it with your morning coffee is also an excellent option to get the best of both worlds.
Besides providing a unique caffeine free alternative to coffee, chicory herbal coffee also has some health benefits. For one, it is a great source of fiber and it may help improve your digestive health. It contains inulin fiber which is a type of prebiotic that can help promote bacteria growth in the gut. This can be very beneficial for people struggling with digestive issues and bowel movements. Furthermore, chicory herbal coffee has also been shown to lower blood sugar and decrease inflammation.
If you are looking for a coffee substitute that promotes digestive health, has less acidity than a normal cup of coffee, and can help reduce your caffeine intake, chicory herbal coffee could be a perfect coffee substitute for you.
Choosing the right coffee substitute is essential to successfully finding a long-term alternative to coffee. Whether you are looking to avoid caffeine, find something less acidic, or are simply tired of the same cup of joe – there are plenty of coffee substitute options out there for you. Find one that works best for you and enjoy!
Related Article: Best Low Acid and non Acidic Coffees of 2021