Nothing warms you up on a cold day quite like a hot drink.
Unfortunately the seasonal offerings at your go-to coffee stop or gas station are often loaded with calories and sugar (gingerbread and pumpkin spice lattes, we're looking at you!). Instead, try making your own nutritious hot drinks at home — and yes, it's possible to even make a healthy hot chocolate.
Click through the slideshow above for some healthy hot drink recipes to keep you cozy through the winter; then check below for our recipes.
1. Hot Chocolate
Yes you read that right, hot chocolate can have health benefits as long as you choose dark chocolate
. Avoid powder mixes, which are packed with sugar, and use real
dark chocolate to mix up a creamy treat that is full of healthy antioxidants.
Heat two cups low fat milk or almond milk in a pot on medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent burning. Add 6 large pieces of chopped dark chocolate and stir until melted.
Also on Z Living: RECIPE: Sugar-Free, Gluten-Free, Crazy Rich Brownies
2. Apple Cider
Unsweetened apple cider combined with spices, like cinnamon and cloves, packs in Vitamins A and C, calcium, and iron all in one tasty hot drink.
Add two cups unsweetened apple cider, a cinnamon stick, 4 whole cloves, and 1/2 teaspoon fresh grated ginger to a pot. Simmer on low for 15 - 20 minutes. Strain spices and serve.
Also on Z Living: Smart Foods: Drink Apple Cider Vinegar For Weight Loss
3. Mulled Pomegranate Punch
Mulled wines are a popular cozy drink for the winter, but if you want something similar, without the alcohol, that packs a healthy punch, swap out the wine for pomegranate juice.
Add two cups pomegranate juice, a cinnamon stick, 4 whole cloves, and a tablespoon of honey to a pot. Simmer on low for 15 - 20 minutes. Strain the spices and serve.
Also on Z Living: VIDEO: A Pomegranate Breakfast Smoothie Perfect For Summer
4. Orange Spiced Tea
Nothing evokes the cozy holiday season quite like the scent of oranges and cloves. Both oranges and cloves are packed with Vitamin C, which gives this hot drink recipe a healthy kick to help boost your immune system.
Add four whole cloves, a cinnamon stick, and the peel from half an orange to two cups water and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer covered for ten minutes. Turn off heat and add a bag of black tea to the pot. Let steep for two minutes then strain spices and serve.
5. Golden Turmeric Milk
This traditional Ayurvedic drink is often used as a natural cold buster, as it is believed to ease symptoms and speed up recovery. Turmeric
has been used for generations in Eastern medicine to treat everything from arthritis to headaches.
Combine two cups almond or coconut milk, one teaspoon turmeric, one teaspoon cinnamon, one teaspoon ground ginger. Heat on the stove at medium-low for 8 - 10 minutes or until warm. Whisk frequently to mix spices and build a froth.
Also on Z Living: Why Turmeric Is A Super Spice In Your Kitchen
6. Ginger Tea
With all the holiday eating, your digestive system might be in need of some assistance. Ginger
can help aid in digestion and ease gas and an upset stomach.
Bring two cups of water to a boil in a pot. Add one tablespoon fresh-grated ginger. Cover and turn off the heat. Let it steep for ten minutes. Strain the ginger, stir in a tablespoon of honey, and serve.
Also on Z Living: The Regenerative Properties Of Ginger Tea
7. Cinnamon Spiced Coffee
Spice up your afternoon cup of joe with some cinnamon. Studies have shown that cinnamon
may reduce inflammation and have an antioxidant effect. It’s also a spice packed with flavor so you can use little or no sweetener, but still have a hot drink that tastes indulgent.
Heat a 1/4 cup of milk (or substitute like almond milk) and use a hand blender or frother to create foam. Add milk and a tablespoon of ground cinnamon to a cup of hot coffee and stir. Top with foam and a sprinkle of cinnamon to make it festive.