Saturday, January 26, 2013

Sugar Free Vanilla Latte

There was a time when popping into Starbucks for a yummy calorie laden beverage was a normal part of my day.  Once I became a mother there was no such thing as "a quick trip" to anywhere, and I'd only go to Starbucks if I could find a drive-thru (and even then only if my kiddos weren't having a meltdown in their car seats in the back of the car).  Like many sleep deprived mothers out there I couldn't just go without coffee all together, so for a long time I was just drinking coffee with flavored creamers at home.   When I started trying to eat healthy I realized that adding those tasty creamers to my coffee was really adding tons of empty calories to my diet.  Have you looked at the nutritional info for flavored coffee creamer?  Yikes?  The serving size is only a tablespoon or two, and I was using WAY more than that.  So these days I either drink my coffee black or I make myself a sugar free latte at home...
Ingredients:                                                                             - 8 Oz. of milk (I used vanilla soy milk)                                - 2 Oz. Torani Sugar Free Vanilla Flavoring Syrup               - 4 Oz. Strong coffee or espresso
Heat the milk and sugar free flavoring syrup for 60 seconds in the microwave (you can also heat it in a saucepan over medium-high heat until just before it comes to a boil).  Add coffee and enjoy!
- If you want foam you can put the heated milk/syrup into a blender and blend on high for about a minute.  Put your strong coffee or espresso into your mug first and then pour the heated/blended milk over the coffee.
-I don't have an espresso machine, so I make strong coffee by using four scoops of coffee and only using enough water for two cups of coffee.  Every coffee maker is different and you may like your coffee a little stronger or a little weaker.  If your coffee comes out too strong you can always add a little more milk.

-If you want to avoid artificial sweeteners (like those found in sugar free syrups) you can sweeten you latte with agave nectar instead.  I've even found flavored agave nectar (hazelnut, Irish cream, etc.) in my local grocery store.  My grocery store likes to move the agave nectar's been on the baking aisle with the sugar and other sweeteners, with the pancake syrup, on the natural food aisle, and most recently on the same aisle as the jams/jellies.  When in doubt...just ask someone who works at the store ;)

-When the stars align and I am able to go to Starbucks I order a sugar free soy vanilla latte...and I don't miss the venti caramel machiattos of my youth at all ;)

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