I am a big fan of stevia as a sweetener. I discovered it way back in 1998 after my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. I went on a major lifestyle overhaul and started intensely researching the link between nutrition and chronic illness. One of the things I changed was using aspartame (at the time it was the most available calorie-free alternative sweetener) and replaced it with stevia. Back then, I could only find NOW brand liquid stevia and the powdered leaf. I tried the leaf and ended up with bitter green powder floating in my tea...not good!! I got used to the taste of the liquid stuff, but back then it still had quite a strong aftertaste. There probably wasn't much incentive to refine it as few people were even aware of it.
Fast forward to present day and stevia is everywhere...heck, even the big dog food companies (Coca Cola/Cargill) are selling their own brand (Truvia)! That being said, you now have to be careful as many stevia products contain not so great additives (dextrose) that, unlike pure stevia, can raise blood sugar.
Awareness and demand for stevia has certainly increased and so has the taste and quality of available stevia products on the market. Some of the very best are made by NuNaturals, a brand that is relatively new in Canada.
I have long been a fan of their products, but it is tougher to find them here and I have generally had to purchase them online. I still can't find NuNaturals in stores, but there are many online stores that carry it, and since I love online shopping anyways, that's fine with me.
The company generously sent me a selection of their products to review recently, including their new line of syrups.
They are all 100% calorie free and contain no crap. I have to tell you, I adore this stuff!! The cocoa syrups are awesome for healthy chocolate milk (my kids are big chocolate milk fans and they said this stuff makes your milk taste just like the sugary stuff), and blended coffee beverages. The clear syrup is a perfect way to lower the calorie and carb content of your favorite cocktails, and the packets are great for coffee and tea. The NoCarbs Blend Powder can be used to sweeten almost anything, has a pleasant flavour and is twice as sweet as regular sugar.
They have lots of recipe ideas on their website, but I came up with my own Mocha Frappe that is just delish. I think I'll be drinking a lot of these!! I also can't wait to experiment more with all of these products.
Low-Cal, Sugar-Free Mocha Frappe
1 cup brewed coffee, cold
2 tsp espresso powder
10-12 ice cubes
2 tbsp. NuNaturals Cocoa Syrup, or to taste
1 tsp konjac powder
Place all ingredients in your blender and blend until thick and creamy. Serve immediately. Makes 1-2 servings.
Thank you to NuNaturals for this fabulous selection of products!!
Disclosure: I was sent these products to try at no cost, but all opinions on this blog are my own.
Oh my gosh, I am so craving a Mocha Frappe now, I am going to go make one ASAP...seriously!!