What’s Better Than a Matcha Latte?

What’s better than a matcha latte? Nothing! No but really the Matcha latte has really grown on me. I have been using a combination of unsweetened vanilla almond milk and organic full fat coconut milk to make it and WOW it’s delicious.

FTC Disclosure: I may earn a small commission if you purchase any products through links in this post.

I have heard about the benefits of Matcha and green tea in general, but I’m more of a coffee fan than tea fan so I never tried it. It tastes like extra concentrated green tea, which makes sense because that’s exactly what it is! Matcha is created by steaming tea leaves and grinding them into a very fine powder (1). I was hesitant to try it because of the strong flavor, until I decided to make a latte out of it. The naturally sweet coconut and almond milk really calm down the strong Matcha flavor and make it an enjoyable beverage to start your day with.

 

The Benefits

 

Fat Burning & Cancer Prevention

A lot of the hype around Matcha has to do with fat burning (2). While this is has been shown in research to be beneficial for weight loss, I think the coolest part of Matcha is it’s antioxidant content. Matcha tea has been shown to have 137 times greater amount of a specific chemical, pigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), than China Green Tips green tea and 3x more than regular green tea (3).

Antioxidants protect our body from free radicals that can damage cells and cause cancer and contribute to chronic disease. ORAC or Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity is a lab technique of testing for the antioxidant content in foods/drinks. Let’s take a look at how Matcha green tea compares to other healthy foods/drinks.

 

ORAC Antioxidant Value:

Matcha Green Tea: 1300 units/gram

Pomegranates: 105 units/gram

Blueberries: 91 units/gram

 

Mental Focus

A cup of matcha (using about 1 tsp) contains 34 mg of caffeine, which is the equivalent to one-third of a cup of coffee, or half a shot of espresso. Although it has less caffeine, it contains more L-theanine, which is an amino acid that has psychoactive properties. These psychoactive properties can induce alpha wave activity in the brain (4). What is this and why is it cool? It reduces stress and anxiety, improves cognition and focus, boosts serotonin and dopamine, and improves creativity. This is why it is commonly used to create a better experience for meditation.

 

 

Make Your Own Matcha Latte

Here’s what you need:

• 1/2-1 tsp Organic Matcha*

• 1/3 cup Organic Full Fat Coconut Milk

• 1/3 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk (look for one without carageenan–nasty chemical)

• 1/3 cup Hot Water (not boiling–can damage the delicate Matcha)

• 1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract (optional but tastes good)

*Why did I choose this brand? It’s really important when purchasing tea OR coffee that you get organic. Tea and coffee require a lot of pesticides when growing conventionally and are heavily sprayed. Trust me, you don’t want those chemicals in your body. Opt for an organic brand. This specific brand presents a lot of research on their website about why they choose to get the leaves from where they do and they even have their own certified organic farms. They also are reasonably priced when I was digging around comparing brands. When researching, I learned that the cheaper brands that you can’t find a lot of information on often have fillers and harmful additives (like most other supplements). I also learned that you can usually tell it’s a high quality brand by the taste. The MatchaDNA taste is strong but it’s clean and tastes like tea and nothing else. It’s around $19.99 for the bag I linked to, but you only need 1/2-1 tsp per latte so there ends up being over 100 servings in the bag. Not bad.

 

First, start heating your water. Do not bring it to a complete boil. This can damage the Matcha. Just make sure it is hot.

While your water is heating, add your coconut milk, almond milk, and vanilla extract to a milk frother and turn on. Make sure you make a warm froth and not a cold one. A cold froth will make your latte cold. 

Side note: What’s a frother and do you need one? If you want frothed milk then yes. I think it’s totally worth it. We use it regularly and it makes for a delicious coffee or tea drink without sugar or $$ spent at a coffee place.

I got this beauty on Amazon a while back for like $50. It froths regular milk really really well and it does a decent job with almond/coconut milk. If I needed to buy one now I would get this one. I purchased a few kitchen appliances from Epica and they work really well and are very reasonably priced.

 

Next step is to take 1 tbsp of your hot water and mix with 1 tsp of Matcha tea. This will be more of a paste type texture. A lot of recipes tell you to use a bamboo whisk.. I just used a spoon and it worked fine for me. Here’s what it looks like:

 

You’re almost done! Now take your Matcha paste you just made and put in a tea/coffee cup. Add in 1/3 cup hot water and mix. Now add your froth and you’re ready to enjoy your homemade Matcha latte packed with beneficial nutrients!

 

REFERENCES

1. http://www.breakawaymatcha.com/how-matcha-is-produced/

2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15640470

3. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14518774

4. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18296328

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