Made of roasted chicory root, this chicory coffee recipe makes a caffeine-free coffee substitute with many health benefits.
Are you a coffee lover but worried about caffeine intake? This chicory coffee recipe may be a solution for you.
Chicory coffee is a tasty beverage with a taste similar to coffee but due to its lack of caffeine people use it when reducing their caffeine intake.
What is chicory coffee?
This chicory coffee recipe is made from dried and roasted chicory roots.
The roasted chicory is later ground into a powder and brewed into a coffee-like drink. You can drink it alone or mix it with regular black coffee.
Roasted chicory root coffee smells a little bit like coffee with a mildly sweet, nutty, and woody aroma that leaves a creamy feeling in the mouth.
Where to buy chicory root?
You can buy roasted chicory in the shops in a form of granules, that are roasted roots of the plants.
It also sells as a powder made of ground roasted roots for an instant drink.
Alternatively, blends of roasted chicory and ground chicory root with coffee make instant coffee with chicory.
If you happen to find dandelion root make this fabulous dandelion coffee that will make your day.
However, the best chicory coffee is made from freshly foraged chicory root. It is well-deserved coffee with a typical chicory flavor that requires nice weather, a lot of patience, and time but all worth it.
Join me in the foraging adventure to find chicory root in nature, roast it, grind it and brew it to your liking. Let’s learn how to make chicory coffee from scratch.
Foraging chicory root
The autumn definitely does not mean the end of the herb season. We can still collect rosehips, hawthorn and the later variety of sea buckthorn ripens. And now is also the perfect time to collect roots. In this time of the year, all the strength which is inside the herb goes into the root so don’t miss horseradish, dandelion, chicory, valerian, comfrey or burdock roots. I doubt I can gather them all but I really wanted to try the chicory and comfrey root this year.
What is Chicory?
Common chicory, Cichorium intybus, Chicory is a plant of the dandelion family that has a somewhat shrubby appearance and, depending on the location and quality of the soil, can grow up to over a meter. It blooms with the same shade of blue as cornflower or the cloudless summer sky.
Get familiar with the plant before you decide to forage it.
When foraging for chicory watch out for the location as it grows often along roadsides and can be easily contaminated with oil or dirt from roads. In addition, chicory is often considered as weed thus sprayed with chemicals so make sure you collect it in places free of toxins.
Flowers and leaves can be turned into teas or extracts, but to make a chicory root coffee we need to get its root and its collection requires appropriate tools such as a shovel, garden scissors, and sharp knife.
How to prepare chicory root
Once you manage to remove 5 – 6 chicory roots from the soil which requires a huge dose of patience and nice weather remove the roots from the stem. Use sharp garden scissors
wash the roots thoroughly, removing all the dirty pieces.
by using a sharp knife remove any remaining dirty pieces that didn’t wash away with water
using a very sharp knife to cut the clean roots into small pieces/slices – depending on the sizes of the roots. Make sure they are small so they will roast fast.
When I make chicory coffee
I am also a coffee lover and it’s really hard for me to resist. But I limit the number of cups to two a day. That’s it. So if in any case, I feel I need more than that then I turn my attention to chicory flavor.
Also later in the afternoon, I don’t go for another cup of coffee as I don’t feel that would be right for my body. So after 5 pm, I prefer chicory instead.
When I want to have these delicious lavender biscuits I cannot help myself and make chicory coffee. They just match perfectly.
When I was breastfeeding and I was craving for my coffee – roasted chicory was there for me. It was right in front of me on the shelf.
Only later did I discover its other medicinal benefits and chicory is more and more welcome in my diet.
Chicory coffee history
The history of Chicory dates back to ancient Egypt. However, it gained popularity during the period of the Napoleonic Wars and the two world wars when coffee was scarce. The roasted chicory became a coffee substitute. Because of this, the perception of chicory “coffee” as a substitute, something inferior, remains a fundamental mistake. It is a drink that is very delicious and in addition, its regular drinking has many positive effects on the body.
Chicory root coffee benefits
- caffeine-free chicory coffee is a great alternative for those who wish to reduce their caffeine intake. It is much better to supplement that decaf coffee as it lowers blood sugar and possesses anti-inflammatory properties.
- it contains prebiotic fibre inulin that improves gut health and is linked to weight loss (1)
- this study suggests that inulin improves the metabolism of carbohydrates and therefore helps control blood sugar (2)
- the antiinflammatory activity has been found in the chicory root and this might be due to the inhibition of various cytokines and its antioxidant effects(3)
How to make chicory coffee
- place small pieces of chicory root on the baking tray with or without baking paper and let it roast under 360 F = 180 C till you smell the rich coffee aroma and their color turns golden brown. It took me around 1 hour.
2. remove it from the oven and let it cool down.
3. place the roasted pieces into the grinder and grind the chicory root into a fine powder. You will need a very strong grinder. I don’t have a grinder so I used my blender instead. It took me at least 10 minutes to make it into a fine powder with several stops in between. The blender was heating a bit which gave the powder a wonderful Mocca aroma.
4. brew a coffee either in a coffee machine, french press or just pour over the coffee with boiled water and allow the grounds to seep for a few minutes to your desired strength. Then strain the coffee through a tea strainer to remove most of the spent grounds and you are done:)
How to drink chicory coffee
You can mix it with regular black coffee to reduce the consumption of caffeine. The ratio 1:1 is very often used as well as 1 teaspoon of regular coffee and 2 teaspoons of chicory. You can play with the ratio as per your taste
You can also add chicory to your tea blend together with other spices such as cinnamon or vanilla. Play with the flavors and find the one you fancy the most
It depends on how strong you want your coffee. It is recommended to use about 2 teaspoons of ground chicory root per 1 cup of water.
Brewed roasted chicory coffee is a little bit like coffee with a mildly sweet, nutty, and woody aroma that leaves a creamy feeling in the mouth. It has a unique taste that can be enhanced with milk and spices such as cinnamon.
Making chicory root and coffee blend helps you reduce caffeine intake. So If you are a heavy coffee drinker that is worried about caffeine overdose adding chicory into your coffee may be a solution for you. Just add 1 teaspoon of ground coffee and Organic Roasted Chicory Root to your cup and brew with water.
Roasted chicory root is slightly alkaline, making a regular coffee less acidic and easier on the stomach when added to a coffee.
Chicory coffee is not recommended for pregnant women, as chicory has been shown to trigger miscarriage and menstrual bleeding (4).