RECIPE

Healthy Homemade Coffee Creamer (Replaces Coffeemate)

Healthy Homemade Coffee Creamer (Replaces Coffeemate)
Prep time: 5 mins
Total time: 5 mins (plus soaking time)

There’s only one time and place for store-bought coffee creamer: never and in the trash.

Seriously though, starting your day by drinking nasty chemical-filled coffee creamer sets you up for a terrible day. The sugar in store-bought coffee creamer will spike your blood sugar leaving you hungry all day, and the artificial ingredients can cause headaches, mood swings and lack of focus. Yuck.

Let’s take a look at the ingredients in Vanilla Coffeemate: water, sugar, partially hydrogenated soybean and/or cottonseed oil, and less than 2% of sodium caseinate (a milk derivative)**, dipotassium phosphate, disodium phosphate, mono- and diglycerides, natural and artificial flavors, cellulose gel, cellulose gum, color added, carrageenan.

I don’t even know where to start! Nothing on this label is real food. A better name would be Cancer-In-A-Bottle.

I don’t like to send fear-based messages and I’m not going to breakdown each nasty ingredient here so we can move onto a way better alternative, but seriously, you have to stop drinking this asap. It’s not even a “treat” for every once in a while, it’s just poison.

Healthy Homemade Cashew Coffee Creamer

I’m not just picking on the Coffeemate brand specifically, just about all store-bought coffee creamer is in the same boat.

Don’t fret, I have good news! There is a really easy and actually healthy way to make your own healthy coffee creamer. You’re essentially making homemade cashew milk and can adjust the consistency as you like it.

I like my coffee creamer plain and unsweetened. I recommend sticking to unsweetened to keep your blood sugar stable, but if you like the sweet stuff this is still a way healthier option than Coffeemate.

This healthy homemade coffee creamer is so delicious that you’ll never want to go back to the store-bought stuff again.

Be sure to use raw cashews (unsalted and not roasted) – you can usually find them in the bulk section of your grocery store or online. Roasted or salted cashews will give you a pretty funky tasting milk. Look for organic if possible. Some chefs will tell you to only buy whole raw cashews as the pieces can be dry, but whole raw cashews can get really pricey (especially the organic ones) so I usually buy the halves or pieces and haven’t noticed any differences.

Soak your cashews for at least two hours to soften them, I even prefer at least four hours. You can also soak them overnight – up to 12 hours – for an even easier recipe, just soak them before you go to bed and whip up your cashew milk in the morning. You can soak them at room temperature or in the refrigerator, if I soak longer than four hours I usually pop them into the fridge. You don’t have to tightly cover the container, but I usually put something over it to keep the dust out if I have it on the counter.

Make as much as you need for the week on Sunday, it will keep in the refrigerator in a mason jar for about a week. Twelve ounces is just about right in my house for two people to have a splash each morning. Double the recipe if you need more. Just like store-bought stuff, it might separate a little which is no big deal, just shake it up before using.

HEALTHY HOMEMADE COFFEE CREAMER

I prefer non-flavored and unsweetened creamer, but I gave you three variations below so you can get it exactly how you like it. Feel free to get creative! A pinch of cinnamon or 1/2 teaspoon of hazelnut extract would also make a great addition. You can add just about anything to flavor your healthy coffee creamer, just make sure whatever you add is whole food-based and low in sugar.

Healthy Homemade Coffee Creamer Recipe

Makes about 12 ounces
Total time: 5 minutes plus soaking time

Special Equipment: high speed blender*, such as a Vitamix or Blendtec

For plain & unsweetened (my preference):

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked at least two hours and up to 12
  • 1.5 cups purified water for blending, more for soaking
  • small pinch of sea salt

For plain & sweetened:

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked at least two hours and up to 12
  • 1.5 cups purified water for blending, more for soaking
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey OR real maple syrup
  • small pinch of sea salt

For vanilla & sweetened
(most like Vanilla Coffeemate):

  • 1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked at least two hours and up to 12
  • 1.5 cups purified water for blending, more for soaking
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey OR real maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (preferably organic)
  • small pinch of sea salt

Method: Drain your soaked cashews and discard the soaking liquid. Rinse well. Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender. Turn the blender to the lowest setting and turn on, then slowly work your way up to a higher setting. Blend until smooth, about 2 minutes.

Give it a try and let me know what you think in the comments below.

Healthy Homemade Coffee Creamer (Replaces Coffeemate)
 
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
 
Author:
Yield: 12 ounces
Ingredients


  • For plain & unsweetened (my preference):
  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked at least two hours and up to 12
  • 1.5 cups purified water for blending, more for soaking
  • small pinch of sea salt

    For plain & sweetened:
  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked at least two hours and up to 12
  • 1.5 cups purified water for blending, more for soaking
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey OR real maple syrup
  • small pinch of sea salt

    For vanilla & sweetened (most like Vanilla Coffeemate):
  • ½ cup raw cashews, soaked at least two hours and up to 12
  • 1.5 cups purified water for blending, more for soaking
  • 1 tablespoon raw honey OR real maple syrup
  • ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract (preferably organic)
  • small pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Drain your soaked cashews and discard the soaking liquid.
  2. Rinse well.
  3. Place all ingredients in a high-speed blender.
  4. Turn the blender to the lowest setting and turn on, then slowly work your way up to a higher setting.
  5. Blend until smooth, about 2 minutes.

 

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58 Comments...
  • Yadira Hendricks

    Thank you Elizabeth! Made the plain and sweetened version and it is delicious! I’m so glad I found your recipe! A little grainy is normal right?

    • Hi Yadira, glad you like this recipe. If it’s grainy, try blending it longer in your blender. A high-speed blender (such as a Vitamix) will make this cashew-based creamer very smooth and not grainy. If your blender leaves it a little grainy and you don’t mind it then no problem. If you want it smoother, you can strain it through a nut-milk bag. Enjoy! ~E

  • Christina Myers

    I was having a hard time giving up coffee creamer until I came across this. I did add a few things and oh my gosh, it is delicious. I soaked the cashews for 8 hours, rinsed them at added them to the blender. In my coffee maker I placed a cinnamon stick, star anise, and cloves, then added the yummy spice water to the blender. I then added the honey, salt, vanilla, and a small amount of coconut sugar. I also quadrupled the recipe, so I have a nice jar full of yummy cashew milk in my fridge now.

  • Yadira Hendricks

    Hi, have a question for you. Am I blending the cashews with milk after soaking them over night? Or is milk not part of this recipe?

  • martin murphy

    Hi Elizabeth, I made a batch of the cashew cream, then divided half with honey and half plain. I like it and I think it is
    a wonderful idea. I started logging all my food into “my fitness pal” so my question is what
    do you think the values are for the carbs, fat, sugar, etc?

    Thanks

  • I made the vanilla sweetened version. Though it looked creamy and sufficiently thick, when I poured it in my coffee, it was not thick enough and left my coffee looking too dark and tasting not to my liking. The recipe was simple enough though and I think the next time I make it, I will cut the water added down to 1/2 the recommended amount and see how that works. It was tasty enough tasting from a spoon, just not concentrated enough to make a difference in my coffee.

  • Hi, love this cashew creamer! I have been looking for something to replace my CoffeeMate for years.
    My problem is that the raw nuts make me VERY gassy and uncomfortable. Would the roasted cashews really taste that bad?

    • Hi Nina, soaking the cashews in water overnight (and soaking nuts in general) makes them easier to digest. Soaking nuts helps remove some of the naturally occurring phytic acids that make them hard to digest for some. I suspect roasting the cashews here would yield an unpleasant flavor but I’ve never tried it. Try soaking them overnight, then draining and rinsing them well as stated in the recipe, and see how you digest it. ~E

  • Laura

    Hello, I do not have a blender such as a Vitamix. Will a food processor work instead?

    Thank you,

    • Hi Laura! I haven’t tried this in a food processor, but it may work. Just make sure the cashews are really soft (soak them at least 12 hours at room temp, or 3-4 hours in hot water). Cashews get softer than almonds, pecans or walnuts (those harder ones for sure need a high-speed blender.) If you try it in the food processor and it’s not completely smooth, you can also filter it through a nut milk bag after (a nut milk bag is a fine mesh bag similar to cheesecloth but reusable and can be found at the health food store or online). Anytime you try to make a nut milk (thick or not) pouring it through a nut milk bag at the end ensures it will be smooth. Let us know if you try it and how it turns out! ~E

  • Donna R Hoffman

    HELP! Just in the last couple of years we have really tried to clean up our act. We have eliminated practically everything unnatural from our diet. We have cut carbs and sugar to a minimum.
    My one evil that remains and I can’t find anything to replace is coffee creamer. For years I used Coffeemate hazelnut. Then, I went to the sugarfree version. In an attempt to do away with artificial sweetener, I started looking for something better that would still satisfy. I’ve tried so many things. I keep going back to Coffeemate, only now I have been able to eliminate the need to sweeten my coffee and plain Coffeemate is as far as I have gotten. I have tried recipes that I have found online only to find that they just don’t do it. I found a recipe using coconut oil. That didn’t do it for me. I have tried real cream, coconut milk, half and half, etc. Even the ones that claim to be ‘natural’ that someone earlier mentioned. None of them work for me. I don’t know what it is about Coffeemate, but so far it is the only thing that gives my coffee the flavor I like. I wish I could learn to like it black, but I’m far from there, yet.
    I tried your recipe and it still doesn’t do it. I read a post that someone left and I tried adding aloe vera juice and a little coconut oil to the mix. Still not there. Can you suggest anything that might give me the results I’m looking for? I really enjoy my morning coffee.

    • Chris Berg

      We are in the same boat except I have been a dedicated Coffeemate drinker for decades. People can disparage it all they like, but it takes great and makes coffee drinking a pleasure. I will try this. Perhaps half as much coffeemate and some of this might work.

      I completely sympathize. Don’t switch the milk out of my hot chocolate for reconstituted powdered milk and tell me it’s the same…….

  • What’s the calorie count on the cashew creamer?

    • Hi Tracy, I don’t count calories because, for me, it feels too obsessive and mentally unhealthy. For that reason, I don’t list (or even look up) calorie counts on my recipes. Instead, I focus on eating unprocessed, mostly plant-based foods. Warmly, Elizabeth

  • Peter Piper

    Nope… it won’t separate IF you add sunflower lecithin to it. And it’s DELICIOUS!!

  • Jennifer Gallo

    Hi there,
    I’ve been looking for an alternative to regular heavy cream – thank you!
    But can you share the nutrition facts – for example, a 2 tbsp serving is how many calories??
    Thank you,
    :jennifer

  • Kate Lewis

    Will this work with almonds?

    • It will not be as thick with almonds, but yes you can make almond milk. The biggest difference is that cashews become soft enough to blend just from soaking, but with almonds in addition to soaking them you need to strain them through a nutmilk bag to remove the pulp.

  • Roxanne

    Have you ever made this creamery with the vanilla and with no maple syrup or sweetener?

  • Ashley

    I absolutely love this recipe!!❤️ When I made it and it was grainy. Is there anything I can do to help the creamer to stay together?!

    • Hi Ashley! It might be your blender. A high-speed blender (like a Vitamix) will give you the smoothest milk with cashews. If it’s grainy, you can pour it through a nut-milk bag to strain out the pieces. Nut-milk bags are reusable, usually less than $10, and you can find them online or at your health food store. Strain it through one if needed. And just shake it up before you use it, it’s the nature of nut milks/creams to separate a little. ~Elizabeth

    • Ashley

      Thank you!❤️

  • MoeDaRat

    Two questions:
    1. Can I use raw peanuts instead of cashews? They’re cheaper.
    2. Instead of raw honey, how ’bout black-strap molasses?

    • Hi Moedarat, peanuts will give you a totally different flavor and texture, so I suggest sticking with cashews. You can use black-strap molasses but the flavor will be totally different. In this case, I suggest sticking with the cashews and maple for better flavor, texture, and overall health.

  • Greetings fellow health advocates! I read this and other websites in search of a non-dairy coffee creamer recipe option. I’m Pescatarian and so, not opposed to dairy itself, but I do actively avoid anything made from American production-lot cattle. I eat local-made goat cheese, Kerrygold Unsalted Irish Butter, and now, Cashew-Coconut Creamer! After reading many different options, I decided no water or salt (salt belongs in the bathroom folks), and so this is what I did:

    I got a can of organic coconut milk (too thin on its own for creamer), and along with a big fistful of raw unsalted cashews and aloe vera juice; I pureed them all in my NutriBullet and kept adding AV juice until the mix was at the same viscosity as half-n-half (it was too thick at first): Nothing else added. The first batch I soaked the nuts overnight and the second batch I did not soak at all, and I noticed no difference either way. It has the same mouth-feel as half-n-half, which is what I was after, and tastes great. The next batch I’m going to add-in my Now Foods Liquid Organic Stevia to taste.

    I do not consume powdered creamers of any brand and so I cannot offer a comparison to that because I have only ever used half-n-half (and organic in recent years) for coffee creamer; I drink tea straight. And besides, I always have a gallon of Fruit of the Earth (brand) AV juice in the fridge for many other uses, including making my own mouth wash with essential oils (Peppermint, Tea Tree, etc.). AV juice by the gallon at W-Mart is inexpensive; a healthy alternative to water in my NutriBlast Smoothies.

    • Janelle

      This sounds like a great result but coconut milk isn’t very heart healthy and contains saturated fats if my understanding is correct. I’m going to give this a go with the all cashew version.

    • Just curious Monk of YHVH about your comment regarding salt. What do you do with salt in the bathroom?
      Thanks

  • Sandy Irvine-Callin

    I have a Kangan water machine. It produces alkaline water. Could I use this water instead of Distilled?

    • Save some money and just add a pinch of baking soda to your water to make it alkaline. Not that I think it makes a whit’s difference, but if you insist on the alkaline water nonsense, this is a much cheaper way to achieve the goal. People complain that the doctors and big pharma are only concerned with money and then buy expensive stuff from the alternative health people who are not in the least bit concerned with money.

  • Notfurlong

    Deeeeeelicious, You’ve made a convert. No more carrageenan laden cream for me.

  • Notfurlong

    Hi, I’m new to soaking nuts so bear with me. I googled it to see whether or not I should refrigerate the cashews during the soak period. There was a plethora of information though much of it seemed to be for preparing nuts for dehydration. Also many suggested that I should add salt during the soak. What do you suggest? Should I refrigerate them? Should I add salt? So much information, so little time. lol

    • Hi there! I usually don’t add salt. Also, room temp is fine unless you live in a very warm climate. When in doubt put them in the fridge. Some people have tight spaces so if there isn’t room in the refrigerator it’s fine to leave them on the counter. Hope that helps!

      • Notfurlong

        Thank you so much Elizabeth. I’m getting ready to whip up my first batch right now. I really appreciate your prompt reply.

  • Eric Green

    I spent about $50 (at Cub Foods) on the start-up ingredients alone. I like it!! Now I’m understanding better why the wealthy eat healthy and the mid-lower class have to sacrifice in order to… The pure vanilla was I believe $13 for 4 oz which is 24 batches the pure maple syrup was $16 . The raw organic cashew nuts were $9.99 a pound… water, sea salt (should last a long time). Added Agave because the maple syrup didn’t make it sweet enough by itself. May look at Trader Joe’s and see what they have in healthy creamer or the cost of the above ingredients. Cheers and God bless you all!!

    • Hi Eric, thanks for sharing! Stocking up can cost more up front but you’ll be able to use the ingredients like salt and vanilla for many servings. Some natural grocery stores have maple and other sweeteners in the bulk section and you can bring your own jar if you prefer to purchase in smaller quantities. A large bottle of good vanilla will last awhile, too. Good on you for taking charge and creating a healthier option! ~Elizabeth

  • If you’re okay with consuming delicious buttery goodness but follow a low-carb diet like Trim Healthy Mama, you can even make your own sweetened condensed milk using xylitol (or your choice of sweetener) instead of using white sugar. Lowcarb-ology can get you going with that – http://coffeelounge.net/flavored-coffee-creamers/

    • Eric Green

      Xylitol is a naturally occurring alcohol found in most plant material, including many fruits and vegetables. It is extracted from birch wood to make medicine.

      Xylitol is widely used as a sugar substitute and in “sugar-free” chewing gums, mints, and other candies. However, sorbitol is the most commonly used sweetener in sugarless gums because it is less expensive than xylitol and easier to make into commercial products.

      As a medicine, xylitol is used to prevent middle ear infections (otitis media) in young children, and as a sugar substitute for people with diabetes.

      Xylitol is added to some chewing gums and other oral care products to prevent tooth decay and dry mouth.

      Xylitol is sometimes included in tube feeding formulas as a source of energy.

      Dog owners should know that xylitol can be toxic to dogs, even when the relatively small amounts from candies are eaten. If your dog eats a product that contains xylitol, it is important to take the dog to a veterinarian immediately.

      How does it work?
      Xylitol tastes sweet but, unlike sugar, it is not converted in the mouth to acids that cause tooth decay. It reduces levels of decay-causing bacteria in saliva and also acts against some bacteria that cause ear infections.

  • Ziyanda

    I need to travel for a couple of days, please assist with a creamer recipe that I can take on the go because I will be in various locations. Thank you

  • Eva Gajda

    Love cashew creamer, I do 1 cup soaked cashews to 4 cups water (for thicker use less water) I add a pinch of salt, and a tsp of raw coconut oil. It;s lovely.

  • Amanda

    How long can this last in the refrigerator? Thanks for all the great recipes!!

  • Paul Herman

    I love drinking coffee, but I have to have my coffee with creamer. I know that the creamers that you get in the store and in coffee shops are so unhealthy for you and full of trans fats, but I don’t like the taste of black coffee. I didn’t know that you can make cashew milk to make coffee creamer. It seems like cashews would be best for creamer since it has a really creamy texture. This looks great! I’m excited to try it in my coffee in the morning.
    http://www.bestlifeint.com/#!healthy-coffee-creamer/c12ui

  • AlienMom

    THANK YOU for this! I’ve long suspected that coffee creamer was causing canker sores in my mouth, and it’s helpful to see that more people out there also think this is poison. I can’t wait to try the cashew creamer!

    • calre

      Homade is much better for you, but the store bought does not cause cancer. It would take a huge amount of the things they ad to it to even make a mouse sick. Please don’t tell people that.

  • GoNatural

    I use coconut milk powder as my ‘coffee creamer’. I normally have it with raw Cocao powder for a hot pick-me-up drink instead of coffee.

  • Rambette

    Awesome! Maybe I can finally get my Mom off that vanilla ‘cancer-in-a-bottle’ that she buys.

  • Robert Corser

    Any responses to the questions below? Have you tried other nuts? Almonds which are less in fat? Thanks!

    • Homemade almond milk is great, it just needs to be strained. I used cashews here because they blend so well, and when you use just a splash I don’t think the amount of fat matters since it’s a whole food :)

  • Tammy Strongitharm

    I tried this and oh my, Its my new cream! Im wondering though, do you know how many calories it is for the sweet one? Thanks

  • Under your Vanilla version you have 1/2 teaspoon and it’s blank. Would that be 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract ?

  • wendystewart79

    What do you think about their Natural Bliss creamer? I believe there are only two or three ingredients. I moved on to that after opening my eyes to the sad truth of the ingredients in their Sugar Free French Vanilla liquid creamer. Thanks in advance and thanks for the recipes!

    • I haven’t ever tried that one :)

      • I’m allergic to cashews. Is there anything else I can use to make my creamer. Thanks in advance.

    • Eric Green

      Is it really healthy? Coffeemate Natural Bliss Coffee Creamer

      My mom had the TV on in the living room this morning when I woke up. So as I was making my breakfast (scrambled egg whites with cheddar cheese and a strawberry banana smoothie with flaxseed and almond milk!), and also coincidentally reading the long, disgusting laundry list of ingredients in the Coffeemate French Vanilla Creamer that my mom uses and left on the counter, I caught this commercial for a new Nestle Coffeemate product called “Coffeemate Natural Bliss.” From there on, hilarity ensued.

      I immediately used the Fooducate app on my phone to search for the product so that I could read it’s “all-natural” ingredients. Well, what do you know? According to Fooducate “this product has ARTIFICIAL FLAVORS!” Fooducate also noted that when it comes to food branding, the word “Natural” is an unregulated term. Meaning, companies can basically use it in any way that they want.

      Watch the commercial, my favorite line is “Who knew… being natural could be so delicious!?” Um! I did! I actually did know that, Coffeemate. Because well, you see I do only eat natural (In the real sense of the word, that is. Not in the sense of your fake, branded, deranged, and manipulative take on it.) and, get ready for the shocker…my food always tastes DELICIOUS! You guys must be doing it wrong.

      It’s just really funny to me that enormous companies like Nestle (which is actually a really evil company) are recognizing that part of the public consciously wants to be healthier and instead of just really truly making an ALL NATURAL product, they create something that’s just a little bit less chemical-y (I just made that word up) than the original product, and then market it like it came out of the earth’s All Natural and Pure Coffee Creamer Well. (That doesn’t exist, by the way.)

      Alright, I’ll cut the snarky sarcasm and I will admit that this version of Nestle’s coffee creamer is MUCH better than the original kind, which is just a horrid concoction of all kinds of sugary chemicals. But, the commercial for and the branding of this product is just another great example of why you absolutely need to read all of the ingredients on everything you eat and drink. The words and language used to market it are meant for one thing and one thing only: to get you to buy the product because you think it’s good for you. Just remember, just because it says “natural,” doesn’t mean it actually is!

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