I originally began using Essential oils because I wanted a natural alternative to OTC medicine, especially for my kids, since the options can be overwhelming and I’m obviously very cautious about what I put in their bodies.
But now that I have them, I’ve been finding fun uses for them as well, like this homemade sugar scrub and all-purpose cream. You can also cook and bake with the oils, which I’ve only tried once or twice so far. This week I discovered this: I can make a peppermint mocha at home that rivals Starbucks’, plus it has the health benefits of peppermint oil instead of added sugar from a syrup. 😀 Now I will not give up my annual Starbucks Peppermint Mocha during our shopping break on Black Friday, but this is a really good option for all the other days in winter when I don’t want to spend $5 for a ‘designer coffee’. (Because you know I can’t have only one…!)
So here’s what you do!
1. Brew your favorite coffee. We like Dunkin Donuts. It’s best when you grind the beans yourself, because it’s super fresh. If you want a little extra depth to your coffee, you can add about 1/2-1 Tablespoon cocoa powder to every 6 Tablespoons coffee grounds; you put that right in with the grounds while it brews. I use Nestle cocoa powder here, or a good quality baking cocoa.
2. Pour 1 Tablespoon Hershey’s Special Dark Cocoa Powder into your mug. I use this in the actual mug because it is a very rich dark chocolate, which is my favorite. Plus it makes up for the fact that you are using regular coffee, not espresso, in your hot beverage.
3. Pour coffee over said cocoa powder, into mug. Stir.
4. Add as much cream or milk as you like. I’ve found I like Half & Half best. I only use a teaspoon or two. Also add a teaspoon or two of honey. (Click here to learn why I started using honey in my coffee.) Stir again of course.
5. Add one drop peppermint essential oil and, you guessed it, stir again! (It is strong. You only need 1 drop!)
*EDIT: Be sure to stir well or use a little frother to mix after adding the peppermint oil, so it doesn’t just hang out on top of the coffee. If you don’t have a frother and you find the peppermint oil is too strong for that first sip, you can always add the peppermint oil after the cocoa powder, BEFORE the coffee 😉
Now, you can stop there. It is already super delicious and perfectly satisfying. But if you want to splurge, read on..
6. Add whipped cream and some mini-chocolate chips. And then sip quickly, before the whipped cream melts and the chocolate chips sink!!
I think because the peppermint oil is so potent, the flavor kind of fuses into the whipped cream and even the chocolate chips taste a little bit peppermint-y!
This would be amazing with a chocolate creme pie for dessert.
Or on Christmas morning in your cozy Christmas PJs while the kids are opening presents around the tree, with snow falling outside… Yep, that sounds perfect. I’m doing that this year. 🙂