When I buy coffee, I primarily buy it with myself in mind, as I am going to be the one drinking it. That said, I always have a few coffee options on hand for friends and family so that they aren’t limited to my coffee preferences. The versatility of the Keurig comes in handy when making different types of coffee for different people, as you don’t need to spend the time to get multiple french presses going or brew up a much bigger pot of one type of coffee than people want. The individual K-cups also have a somewhat longer shelf life than ground coffee does, so they are easy to simply have on hand when you need them. My staples include blonde, medium and dark roasts, though I always gravitate towards the darker end of the spectrum myself.
Blonde (Light Roasts) – Those who prefer stronger coffee will have to brew this on the smallest setting for a stronger flavor, so blondes are best for those who simply prefer their coffee with a lighter touch.
Medium (Medium Roasts) – These all purpose coffees that can appeal to just about anyone. A little milk and sugar can tone them down for those who like their coffee light, as can brewing them on a larger setting to slightly dilue their strength. Those who prefer a richer coffee flavor can hit the smallest brew button on their Keurig for a more intense flavor, too. Continue reading »
You should probably be drinking more coffee than you currently do. Coffee consumption has been linked to all kinds of health benefits, including a reduced risk of Alzheimer’s disease, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. It can also help to keep you alert and focused. The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Department of Health and Human Services puts out new dietary guidelines for Americans every five years and the newest version of the report suggests that more coffee could be better for your health.
Though Americans only drink an average of 1 cup of coffee per day, the new guidelines indicate that 3-5 cups of coffee per day should be considered “moderate” consumption that is permitted – and, perhaps even encouraged – as part of a healthy diet. The guidelines specifically note that consumption of up to 400 milligrams of caffeine is within normal limits, as the research linking coffee consumption to health benefits has always linked caffeinated coffee, not decaf. The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans will be finalized by the end of the year.
Several months ago, I heard that McDonalds was bringing their coffee to retail stores. I didn’t hear much about it after that, though it was not a surprising move since competitors like Dunkin’ Donuts are already selling coffee in that space. I recently saw McCafe K-Cups in my local grocery store and picked up a pack to give them a try. The K-cup version of McCafe coffee makes a lot more sense to me than packaged ground beans, since McDonalds coffee is all about convenience.
The French Roast packaging is attractive and the k-cups have a fluted shape to them that makes them instantly recognizable by feel, even if you thrown them into a box filled with other k-cups. The coffee is a medium bodied coffee with some nice chocolate and cocoa notes, as well as a hint of citrus, and a very smooth finish. It isn’t an extremely complex coffee, but it is very drinkable and I would say it is better than the last time I got coffee from the McDonald’s drive-thru. It is also definitely better than many of other mid-range k-cup brands that I’ve tried, so I was pretty pleased with it overall. The McCafe line offers a range of both dark and light coffees. I personally wouldn’t want a coffee much lighter than this, but I think that these k-cups could be a nice crowd-pleasing option to add to your coffee lineup.
Coffee liqueur is one of those little indulgences that is a great way to treat yourself when you want an after dinner drink that isn’t your usual cup of coffee. The most well-known coffee liqueur is Kahlua, which is made with a rum base, but these day there are all kinds of coffee liqueurs made with everything from vodka to tequila that you can incorporate into your cocktails. Coffee liqueur is also surprisingly easy to make if you have a bottle of vodka and some instant coffee already in your kitchen.
At Baking Bites, I shared a great recipe for Homemade Vanilla Coffee Liqueur that will satisfy coffee-lovers’ tastebuds better than any of the storebought stuff will. It has a rich coffee flavor and a nice balance of sweetness. You can add it to hot chocolate, a latte or turn it into an Espresso Martini. Continue reading »