During the colder seasons, there’s nothing more relaxing than reaching for one of these nice warm healthy infused hot drinks. They will help to settle your nerves and get you ready for the day.
Most people like to drink hot cocoa on a cold day, but did you know that there are a lot of other drinks that you can try that have a lot more health value? From refreshing to soothing – infused teas, milk, cider, and juices can be all-natural and easy to make healthy infused hot drinks for cool days.
These drinks in this article are naturally caffeine free, and suitable for drinking at any time of the day.
What is an infusion?
Making an infusion with tea simply means to pour boiling water into a pot with some tea leaves or herbs and allowing it to steep.
For the purposes of this article, making healthy infused hot drinks means allowing enough time for the ingredients to achieve the desired taste, aroma, and provide their healing herbal properties.
Hot infusions draw out vitamins, enzymes, and aromatic volatile oils from the chosen ingredients. The basic method for infusing herbs uses a French press or strainer, nearly boiling water, and time – anywhere from 10 minutes to hours. We will also use slow cookers to achieve this herbal goodness.
From Collen Codekas in her book Healing Herbal Infusions: (Amazon)
“For a much stronger medicinal tea, try a long or overnight infusion. Put the herbs in a Mason jar and add boiling water, then cover amd let it infuse for severalhours or overnight. Strain out the herbs with a fine-mesh sieve before drinking”
I prefer to use a French Press (Amazon) for my liquid infusions. I find that the built-in cover and mesh strainer work the best as you are infusing herbs for warm drinks.
Spiced Coconut-Almond Milk
If you’ve been looking into healthy drinks for quite some time you may have heard of some of the ingredients that are essential to this amazing drink. To make spiced coconut-almond milk, you simply need to blend a tablespoon of coconut oil into a hot cup of almond milk, add ½ teaspoon of turmeric, freshly grated ginger, and vanilla with a pinch of nutmeg.
Turmeric is well known for its antibacterial properties, as well as ginger, so you can be sure that when you sit down with it, you’ll be getting some nutritious and helpful nourishment. I use this Homemade Golden Milk recipe from Rootsy as my inspiration.
Sage tea is well known for its soothing and brain-boosting properties, but best of all, it’s a very simple tea that you can easily make in just a few minutes. Just boil some water, and take dry sage leaves and place them in the hot water. If you want to sweeten the tea, you can use lemon slices and honey to give it a more pleasant.
Sage is used for many digestive problems, including loss of appetite, gas, diarrhea, and bloating. Merissa at Little House Living has a nice recipe for sage tea that includes mint, cloves, and cardamom. Give it a look!
Hot Spiced Cider (Mulled Cider)
A slow cooker pares wonderfully with mulling cider and does double duty by infusing the juice and keeping it warm for hours. Using fresh apple cider that contains no added sugar or spices is the best option. If you can’t find cider use unfiltered apple juice, which is found in the refrigerator section at the store.
1-gallon of fresh apple cider or unfiltered apple juice
1 medium orange
2-inch piece fresh ginger
5 small cinnamon sticks or 5 tablespoons of cinnamon chips
1 tablespoon whole cloves
Orange slices, for serving (optional)
To make the infusion:
Prepare the fresh ingredients. Cut the orange into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Cut the ginger into 1/4-inch-thick slices.
Add the orange, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves to a slow cooker big enough to hold at least one gallon of juice. The spices will float. If you want to be able to easily remove them before serving, place the cloves and spices in a tea ball first and then remove it after the infusion time.
Turn your slow-cook on to the low heat setting and infuse the cider for 4 hours. Be sure to cover it to reduce evaporation. After 4 hours, keep the drink warm and serve by ladling into mugs garnished with additional orange slices if desired.
Wassil is similar to spiced cider, except it has other fruit juices for an additional flavor profile. This recipe works well when it is infused in a slow cooker for several hours. That makes Wassil the perfect drink for your next gathering.
You can add the ingredients to the pot, place it on low and have it ready when the guests arrive. Get the full instructions in this article from Taste of Home.
Ingredients: apple cider, orange juice, pineapple juice, brown sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon sticks, and a dash of ground cinnamon and cloves.
Cinnamon Apple Cider Vinegar Tea
Apple Cider Vinegar is excellent for controlling breath odor, keeping blood sugar balanced, and lots of other amazing benefits like its ability to help you to improve arterial health, which can help prevent heart disease.
We don’t however, think about drinking it hot as a way to bring warmth into our bodies.
To make this soothing recipe all you need is hot water, some fresh or dehydrated lemon slices, cinnamon chips, a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, and a tablespoon or two of honey, depending on the amount of sweetness that you want the drink to have.
To make the infusion:
Add the ACV, cinnamon chips and lemon to a French press. Boil 2 cups of water and pour over the spices. After 10 minutes, strain the tea pour it into a cup, add honey for sweetening.
Mayan Hot Chocolate
Hot chocolate is an old-time favorite on a cold winter day. This recipe from Learning and Yearning make a thick and creamy mug of hot chocolate with a secret ingredient. Be sure to take a look at the recipe for Mayan Hot Cholocate in Susan’s article.
There are about a million hot chocolate recipes on the internet today. I’ve narrowed it down to a few that look especially tasty. Cinnamon Hot Chocolate from Saveur looks promising as a make-ahead mix that only needs warm milk to bring it to life. This recipe for Incredibly Healthy Hot Cocoa from Healing Harvest Homestead has ginger, cinnamon, cayenne, and nutmeg in it. Yum!
Hot Raspberry Cider
Adding the frozen raspberry to apple cider gives you an additional way to bring the benefits of antioxidants into your diet. Warm up on a chilly day and serve up this hot spiced apple-raspberry cider.
8 cups apple cider or apple juice
1 10 – ounce package of frozen raspberries
4 tablespoons of cinnamon chips (or break up cinnamon sticks)
1 teaspoon whole cloves
To make the infusion:
Combine cider or juice, frozen raspberries, the 4 tablespoons of cinnamon pieces, and cloves in a large saucepan. Bring to boiling and reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain out the spices.
Serve in heatproof mugs with a garnish of cinnamon sticks, or apple slices. Makes 8 (8-ounce) servings.
No Caffeine London Fog
London Fog is a classic drink blend using Earl Grey tea. This non-caffeine alternative replaces the tea with Red Rooibos, which is loaded with vitamins and minerals such as iron, calcium, potassium, copper, manganese, zinc, and magnesium.
Red Rooibos loose leaf
Lavender flowers (optional)
To make the infusion:
Place 2 tablespoons loose leaf Red Rooibos, and a pinch of lavender flowers (optional), into a French press. Cover with hot water. After 10 minutes, strain the tea and combine it in a cup with almond milk, honey and a bit of vanilla blended until slightly frothy.
Not only is no-caffein London Fog a soothing drink, but the addition of Rooibos makes this drink have natural antioxidant and antibacterial properties. It is also known to have a relaxing effect when consumed.
What cool weather drinks do you like to make?