What's all the hype about olive oil in coffee? This health trend has long been popular as a nutritional hit in the morning, but now it's gone mainstream with celebrities like Beyoncé and chains like Starbucks getting involved.
Brace yourselves, folks. Your next coffee order might just be café au...oil?
We're no stranger to sipping on olive oil. You might remember our January resolution to take a spoonful of EVOO every morning.
And while "bullet-proof" coffee with fats like butter have been hyped up for a few years now in the nutrition and wellness communities, it's fascinating to see it head to the high street with Starbucks' announcement that it'll be launching "extra virgin olive oil-infused coffee" in the form of it's new "Oleato" range.
"In over 40 years, I can't remember a moment in time where I've been more excited, more enthused," said Starbucks' executive Howard Schultz in the BBC.
But it is actually healthy? What are the benefits? And—importantly—HOW DOES IT TASTE?!
Why do people want to put olive oil in coffee?
As people obsessed with the magical fruit that is the olive, we obviously see endless possibilities for how to use extra virgin olive oil.
In traditional Mediterranean cultures, of which many aspects still exist today, olive oil was and is central to the diet and way of life.
It is not simply for salads and dipping bread; it's the cornerstone of their diet which is consumed at all meal times in many different ways.
There is also a tradition around drinking olive oil in the morning in some regions, and so a natural mealtime accompaniment would be coffee.
However, this latest trend seems to be off the back of diets like Paleo and Keto, which promote healthy fats.
While seemingly inspired by Italian coffee culture (of which we've never seen combined in actual Italy and even amongst the Greeks where EVOO is used in quantities that other Mediterranean countries could only dream of)—this trend is definitely grounded in the nutritional benefits associated with fats and specifically what the polyphenols and flavour of extra virgin olive oil bring to the cup.
What are the benefits of EVOO in coffee? Is it good for you?
This really comes down to what healthy fats mean for your nutrition, as well as what olive oil does to flavours and the palate feel.
There's a long list of proven health benefits of extra virgin olive oil, so dropping it into anything is generally a winner.
However, specifically it helps slow down how we absorb food and drinks, which is why EVOO is also great in a cocktail!
For those of us who are sensitive to too much caffeine (guilty!): "By adding fats to your coffee, you are slowing the absorption of the caffeine into your system and prolonging its effects," explains Paleoonthego.com
It also helps neutralise the acidity in coffee, protecting your stomach from inflammation and supporting better gut health overall.
Finally, it can create a creamy and silky texture, particularly when blended in like you see in the bullet-proof coffee styles.
But let's not forget what beautiful extra virgin olive oils can do to flavours...
How does olive oil in coffee taste?
"Unexpected, velvety, buttery flavour... enhanced the coffee and lingers beautifully on the palate" explains the CEO of Starbucks.
But we'd say that all depends on which EVOO you're using.
Just like we recommend pairing different olive oils with different foods—this one comes down to what you're after.
Do you want something peppery which gives you a polyphenols punch? Maybe go with something like our Portuguese early harvest.
Are you wanting something something that gives almost butter vibes and pairs well with chocolatey notes? Our Greek oils fit the bill here.
Or are you wanting to double-down on bitter with something that will wake up your palate in the morning? In which case, a powerful Sicilian or our Croatian might be your match.
Ways to put olive oil in your coffee.
Make it bulletproof. But rather stirring it in like you would do with ghee or butter, mix it in a frother or a blender for that velvety finish.
Have it shaken and stirred over ice. A little hack we recently discovered is to shake the olive oil in an empty jar (or a cocktail mixer) with a double shot of espresso and some ice cubes. The mixture will combine well, leaving you with a silky smooth, yet frothy base for your drink.
Like we said about the spoonful trend in the morning, we're all about using olive oil in abundance to make all our meals sparkle and satiate, so we'll probably stick to it on the side with Greek yoghurt or over toast in the morning.
However, if you're in a rush and need something to tick all the boxes first thing in one go: this might just be your new favourite thing.
So, Citizens—what do you think of a cuppa EVOO? Is it worth a (morning) shot? Drop us a line at email@example.com or tag us in your photos of your new morning brew ritual on Instagram.
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