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Best 5 Healthy Alternatives to Coffee - Cafix vs Pero vs Other Coffee Substitutes


Healthy Coffee Alternatives

I wanted to cut down on coffee, and I looked for the best healthy alternatives. Which one is the best tasting, which one is the healthiest, what about the price per cup? I had an idea of comparison, and knew a few substitutes for coffee, I had drank before lots of it. But because times have changed, I thought why not try newer products, that can imitate the the real stuff taste better than what I knew. I was right, the products on the market now are amazing.

The ingredients in the substitute coffee are very diverse ranging from herbal mixes, to roasted grains, roots, and nuts. The taste will of course be a bit different, and don't expect a substitute to taste like the real stuff, but they are very close, and with a little creativity, you will get very close.

Kaffree Roma Roasted Grain Beverage - Grain Coffee Substitute

Coffee Ibrik on the Stove - Credit Dorian Bodnariuc

Coffee Ibrik on the Stove - Credit Dorian Bodnariuc

Are Coffee Substitutes Healthy?

Why Drink Coffee Substitutes?

There are a lot of reasons to drink a coffee replacement, whether you reduce the number of cups per day, or you stop drinking it all together. Some religions forbid the consumption of coffee, but you'd like to have a nice drink, or maybe enjoy the social side of it. Maybe you get stomach problems from coffee, and you can't drink it anymore. Or maybe you are sensitive to caffeine, and you need to cut down drastically. Whatever the reason, you need a nice drink to mimic the daily habit of drinking a cup of joe.

Caffeine has some remarkable positive effects on our health, and if we can drink it is the perfect scenario. However, coffee can have negative effects on us, especially if we drink it in large quantities.

Coffee substitutes, are healthy alternatives with low, or no caffeine content at all. Depending on your needs or, preference, you can go with 0% caffeine, or with a mix of substitutes and a low percentage real coffee. Most substitutes are healthy, and I made sure I only showcased the healthy ones on this page.

Ayurvedic Roast - Herbal Coffee Substitute - Organic Caffeine-free Coffee Substitute

The Ayurvedic Roast is a mix of herbs and roasted grains, to allow a balance body to your daily cup, and offer you the great health advantages of the Ayurvedic medicine plants. The ingredients list includes:

  • Roasted rye
  • Roasted barley
  • Chicory,
  • Brahmi, (it calms the mental, and brings clarity to mind)
  • Shatavari. (helps immunity, and a great antioxidant)
  • Ashwagandha, (Indian ginseng, a powerful antioxidant)

Best 5 Healthy Alternatives for Coffee

Here are the best five coffee substitutes on Amazon. When I started my research, I took Amazon ratings as a quality signal, and it proved the right way to do it.I tested a lot of products, and even made my own, here is my list with the five best coffee substitutes:

  • Teeccino Herbal Coffee
  • Cafix All-Natural Instant Beverage
  • Pero, Instant Natural Beverage
  • Ayurvedic Roast, Herbal Coffee
  • Dandy Blend, Instant Herbal Beverage with Dandelion

I would add to this list the old simple decaf, some of them are really tasty, and they don't give you the stomach upset associated with the regular joe. My favorite is "Starbucks VIA Ready Brew", it tastes really great.

Pero Coffee Substitute - Instant Beverage - Is Pero Healthy?

Many people ask if Pero is healthy. The short answer is YES, Pero is healthy. The high content of Alkylresorcinols in the rye, (an anticancerigene), and the high content of fiber, combined with the inulin in the chicory, (a prebiotic), the barley malt contain many minerals and vitamins, even though through roasting many vitamins will disappear, and finally the regular barley that is known to help regulate blood sugar. Barley also contains dietary fibers - prebiotics.

Chicory and Dandelion Coffee - Credit Bart Everson

Chicory and Dandelion Coffee - Credit Bart Everson

Ingredients for Healthy Coffee Substitutes

How to Make Your Own Healthy Coffee Alternative

If you want to make your own coffee it is not very complicated, you just need to understand what are the ingredients that mimic the best the coffee's taste. The advantage of making your own concoction is that you get to pick the ingredients that work for you best, and in the percentage that you like. The other great advantage is that you can make a herbal mix to work for your health problems.Here are the most used ingredients and their medicinal value:

  • Barley is a great source of zinc, a trace mineral that we don't get in abundance in our regular diet, it lowers glucose levels, reduces blood pressure, and reduces LDL cholesterol. Eating barley regularly helps with the weight control. Barley also contains dietary fiber, a prebiotic, very important for the intestinal flora.
  • Chicory root is one of the best natural sources of inulin, a prebiotic. It is also a great source of polyphenols, (polyphenols are powerful antioxidants). Chicory root is a great liver support, fact supported by scientific research and very well known in the folk medicine. Another great health benefit stems from the ability of chicory root to stimulate the digestion.
  • Red beets are known to lower blood pressure, they also contain magnesium, calcium,iron and phosphorus. They are also a great source of fiber. The sugar in beets is actually healthy form of sugar, and in moderate quantities is benefic boosting your energy levels. The large amount of boron present in beets make them a great aphrodisiac.
  • Carob pods are ground into a powder that is great for improving digestion, and lowers cholesterol. It is also very effective in treating diarrhea. Its high content in phosphorus and calcium makes it a great aid in fighting osteoporosis.
  • Almonds contain a consistent dose of vitamin E, a great antioxidant. It also contain fiber, and magnesium, which is one of the lacking minerals in our regular diet.
  • Dandelion root's health benefits are incontestable, it is one of the most used in the Traditional Chinese Medicine. We can remind here a few health benefits, but there are many more than these: liver tonic, anemia treatment because of it high content in iron and zinc, aids digestion, lowers cholesterol, detoxifiant, and a great aid for skin problems, helps with weight loss, etc... Many people report great results lowering their blood sugar levels with dandelion coffee. Dandelion root is probably one of the best treatments for liver and bile.
  • Rye grains contain Alkylresorcinols. In vitro studies shown that alkylresorcinols may prevent cells to turn cancerous. They also have a high content of soluble fiber. Soluble fibre encourages bowel movement, improves glucose tolerance, and it is a food source for prebiotics.
  • Chickpeas contain a lot of iron, and it is an important source of manganese which plays an important role as an antioxidant. The soluble fiber will help to stabilize blood sugar level, and lower the LDL cholesterol. One of the less known facts is that chickpeas contain the trace mineral molybdenum, that is an important factor in sulfites detoxification. Chickpeas also contain phytoestrogens, and this could help women lower the risk of cancer.
  • Dates and figs are great sources of dietary fiber, and many trace minerals. Although their role in a coffee substitute is purely to make it more palatable, the dried form of the two fruits is a great source of trace minerals.

Cafix All-Natural Instant Beverage

Cafix is made in Poland, which is one of the countries with an old tradition in coffee substitutes. Their Inka is probably one of the most famous Internationally.

Cafix is made from barley, chicory, malted barley, figs, and red beet extract. They pride with non GMO ingredients, and it is has a taste that is very close to coffee, maybe that's why it became one of the Amazon's best sellers so quickly. If you mix coffee with Cafix in a 50% ratio, most of the coffee drinkers cannot tell any difference, besides the missing upset stomach symptoms, or the jitters.

Teeccino Herbal Coffee, Mediterranean Vanilla Nut

Inka Instant Coffee Substitute


Inka is probably the most known coffee substitute in the world. Although initially developed by the communists to cover for the coffee shortage, it is still a popular drink mainly because it is one of the best tasting substitutes, it is healthy, and is easy to make a cup.Inka has a very small granule, almost like a powder, with a taste that reminds of Postum. You need about 2-3 heaping teaspoons for a large mug for a nice strong taste.Inka is one of my favorites, although Amazon sales doesn't recommend it .

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Chicory (Photo Credit: F. D. Richards)

Chicory (Photo Credit: F. D. Richards)

Other Coffee Substitutes

Depending on the economic situation, people have used other plants, grains, nuts, and roots to make coffee substitutes. Some of them are good, but they are not very popularized, some of them are OK, and it really depends on ones taste.Some of these alternatives for coffee are acorn coffee. The oak nut was a popular choice in periods of war when coffee was not available, and other substitutes were not available. Beech nuts also make a nice drink when roasted and ground as you would with coffee.We can also brew a great drink from other healthy alternatives such as sweet potato, okra seeds, persimmon seeds, peas, and beans. Wheat bran is also a great substitute for coffee, and Postum the very popular drink from Kraft, was based on wheat bran.

Dandy Blend, Instant Herbal Beverage with Dandelion

What is your favorite? Were you able to quit coffee using a substitute? Did you have any problems with your substitute?Let us know your experiences.

© 2013 Dorian Bodnariuc

Guestbook Comments

Anthony Fox on February 01, 2020:

I need a coffee substitute because I am allergic to the sulfite that is added to counter the mutation of natural coffee ingredients. I got Kaffree Roma but do not know if any of its ingredients contain sulfites. Will find out shortly.

ila on September 15, 2018:

just bought caffix. It is delicious. However, I did not notice warning on label that it may contain acrylamide. Now I am considering dumping my ten dollar investment. very confusing as most of our coffee is roasted. would like to find more research if anyone knows....

jgr 1950 on November 29, 2017:

I drink pero "hot" with a shot of cream and a long shot of vanilla. try it, and you will be hooked!

Jobs Network from California on July 01, 2017:

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Roger Maddy on April 13, 2016:

Why am I always 2 years behind and 2 dollars short? I'm trying to decide right now which one to take in a thermos to the park this afternoon—Pero or Cafix!

best health magazine on March 10, 2016:

woow i like this Are Coffee Substitutes Healthy thanks brother for this information and keep going

Dorian Bodnariuc (author) from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on April 22, 2015:

I am the same Delia, I have my double espresso shot in the morning, and then I complete with a substitute. Never tried soy coffee. This year I will be making my own chicory coffee from seed to cup. I am planting some chicory, and hopefully I'll get the roasting right.

Delia on April 04, 2015:

A few years back I had to stop drinking coffee for health reasons, so looked for an alternative. Our local Health Food Store happen to have different flavored Soy Coffee on a discontinued item Sale....I purchased all that was left. I really liked it and it helped me. Now I drink just one mug of real coffee in the morning and I'm satisfied. Being German I like bold and flavorful coffee. I'm glad I didn't have to give it up...but now know there are more alternatives to try...Thanks for sharing.

Emily Tack from USA on March 14, 2015:

I just ordered some Dandy Blend, today. Already, I have tried the Pero and Roma brands. They are palatable, but I am going to try some other alternatives.

Good information here!

TerriCarr on August 10, 2014:

It seems we think alike. I have a coffee alternatives lens too! I have never heard of the Ayurvedic Roast though.

Dorian Bodnariuc (author) from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on April 19, 2014:

@tazzytamar: No more afternoon coffee for me. Just the occasional party one, when you need it...

Anna from chichester on April 19, 2014:

Wow I really need to cut down on my coffee intake and I think this might just be the thing I've been waiting for - thanks :)

Flora Crew from Evanston, Illinois on January 08, 2014:

This looks interesting. I bought some coffee mixed with soy beans today at a health food store. I had a cup when I got home and it was pretty good. I will have to try some of these alternatives. I a definitely a coffee addict. Nice lens!

Dorian Bodnariuc (author) from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on August 19, 2013:

@atomicgirl24: As a heavy coffee drinker, I agree with you. However, if you need something to sip on in the afternoon, these are the best options.

Dorian Bodnariuc (author) from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on August 19, 2013:

@JoleneBelmain: Way better. Your husband is an angel.

flycatcherrr on August 16, 2013:

I've been thinking I need to cut back on caffeine, but "coffee substitute" to me always meant the old-fashioned plain ground chicory - how cool to learn that there are alternatives with more interesting combinations of ingredients, and healthy ones, too. The Cafix looks quite attractive to me - I could probably work up to the half-and-half with real coffee, as you suggest.

JoleneBelmain on August 16, 2013:

I used to hardly drink coffee, but if I did, since I would make a pot, I would drink the pot. For Christmas my husband bought me a Keurig, and since then I find I drink coffee almost every day, but I only drink the one little keurig packet, and that's it, so I think it is better portion wise that way.

atomicgirl24 on August 09, 2013:

As a heavy coffee drinker, I don't think I could ever really quit coffee. However, these are very interesting alternatives you've posted, and I wouldn't mind trying them out just for the heck of it!

Shelly Sellers from Midwest U.S.A. on August 07, 2013:

I really need to cut down on my coffee consumption, but I have found decaf isn't the best. I will check out your coffee substitute recommendations!

Lorelei Cohen from Canada on August 07, 2013:

My parents used to drink something called Ovaltine when I was a kid but I am not too sure what it was made from. I think my mom wanted my dad to cut down on his coffee intake which is why she purchased it.

Dorian Bodnariuc (author) from Ottawa, Ontario Canada on August 07, 2013:

@darkflowers: I alternate between decaf and substitutes, but that is only in the afternoon. I still get my espresso in the morning, or a Turkish coffee, depends on the mood.

Anja Toetenel from The Hague, the Netherlands on August 07, 2013:

Wow what a huge variety of coffee substitutes! Personally I drink decaf coffee from my local supermarket. I can't drink caffeine anymore because I have health problems and caffeine has a negative effect on them. I drink a lot of tea now too, herbal tea of course! Great Lens with useful information, thank you!

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