SRC: Iced Coconut Mocha

Creamy coconut meets an iced mocha for a delightful summer treat… plus this drink is made with a SECRET INGREDIENT. Ooooh! What more can you ask for?!
Iced Coconut Mocha from thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclub

Iced coffee is my drink of choice in the summer. I LOVE making a batch of cold brew coffee to have a special treat in the afternoons [my simple method: make a pot of french press coffee as usual, same ratio of coffee to water, but use cold water. Place in the fridge or on countertop overnight to brew for at least 12 hours, up to 24. Press as usual, then store in the fridge.]. Lately I’ve been enjoying my coffee with half and half and some mint simple syrup. But I love ANYTHING coconut so when I saw this iced coconut mocha on Happy Go Lucky, my blog assignment for this month’s edition of Secret Recipe Club, I was awestruck. Mmm! Kara has a great blog full of awesome DIY projects and yummy recipes–like this BLT chicken salad, s’mores brownies, or Hawaiian grilled cheese. Kara lives with her family in Virginia Beach, a city that holds special memories since Ben and I got engaged there when I spent the summer on the beach with Cru for a summer project in 2008. I loved checking out Kara’s blog–so much goodness there!

Iced Coconut Mocha from thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclubSince you’re dying to know, the secret ingredient in this iced coconut mocha is a coconut POPSICLE! How genius is that?!? I meant to buy some at the grocery store to make this coffee drink, but I forgot… so I made my own. :) Ha! And guess what? They worked perfectly! You can make this drink in several ways–hot coffee with cold popsicle, cold brew coffee with leftover coconut popsicle “batter,” or blending it all together, frappe style. No matter how you mix it, this drink is a fabulous pick-me-up… It’s sweet and creamy, with lots of chocolate and coconut flavor. No need to go to the coffee shop when you have this in your repertoire.

Iced Coconut Mocha from thepajamachef.com #secretrecipeclub

I will be making this mocha ALL summer long. Thanks, Kara!

one year ago: Mango Coconut Muffins
two years ago: Double Chocolate Strawberry Shortcakes
three years ago: Banana Crumb Muffins
four years ago: Creamy Taco Mac

Iced Coconut Mocha

  • Servings: 1
  • Time: 5 minutes
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from Happy Go Lucky

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup strong brewed coffee – hot or cold
  • 1 coconut popsicle – storebought or homemade
  • chocolate syrup
  • sugar, to taste
  • whipped cream
  • toasted coconut
  • ice cubes- made with coffee, if you can!

Directions:

There are three ways to make this delicious drink!

Method 1, from Kara: brew coffee. Place about 2 tablespoons chocolate syrup in the bottom of a glass, then top with 8 ounces hot coffee. Sweeten to taste, then add 1 popsicle. It will melt and cool down the drink. Stir then add ice. Top with whipped cream, more chocolate syrup, and toasted coconut.

Method 2, I made homemade coconut popsicles from the link above [1 can coconut milk + 1/3 cup coconut flakes + 1/2 tablespoon agave, pulsed in a blender, then frozen in popsicle molds.] I had about 1/2 cup coconut milk mixture left so I added 1/2 cup coconut milk mixture to a jar with 1 cup cold brew coffee and 2 tablespoons chocolate syrup, then shook it all up and poured into a glass. Add ice, then top with whipped cream, more chocolate syrup, and toasted coconut.

Method 3, that I haven’t tried but seems like it would work. Place 1 cup coffee [cooled a bit if not using cold brew] in a blender with ice, the coconut popsicle, and 2 tablespoons chocolate syrup. Pulse until combined, then top with whipped cream, more chocolate syrup, and toasted coconut.

Enjoy!

Check out more recipes from other members of the Secret Recipe Club below!

#HotSummerEats: Strawberry Ginger Smoothie

A refreshing smoothie, perfect for breakfasts on a hot morning or for a snack after spending the afternoon at the pool. This smoothie is full of fruit and a hint of spicy ginger for a fun twist.
Strawberry Ginger Smoothie for #HotSummerEats on thepajamachef.com
Ben and I love smoothies so much that we buy frozen berries in giant 10 pound bags from Sam’s Club. Now that we have an extra freezer in the garage–thanks Mom and Dad!–we can buy multiple kinds of fruit at once! YAY! But up until now, our class combo was vanilla yogurt + frozen strawberries + a frozen banana + a splash of milk or oj. Easy and delicious. For an afternoon snack though, like you may want during hot summer days, the idea of dairy–milk or yogurt–isn’t very appealing. So I switched up my normal smoothie, leaving out the yogurt to create more of a slushie texture and adding some ginger for a ‘lil extra flavor. Feel free to try this smoothie in whatever variations you like–using another type of berry, blending in some greens, adding protein powder or chia seeds, etc. This is a great basic smoothie recipe, tried and true and sure to please! Enjoy!

P.S. Don’t forget to enter the #HotSummerEats giveaway for lots of great prizes, including the ginger I received from Gourmet Garden and used in this recipe.

two years ago: Pretzel Rolls

Strawberry Ginger Smoothie

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 10 minutes
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Ingredients:

  • 2 cups frozen strawberries, thawed on the counter for 5 minutes
  • 2 sliced, frozen bananas, thawed on the counter for 5 minutes
  • 1/2 tablespoon Lightly Dried Ginger – or an equivalent of fresh grated ginger
  • 1/2 cup water, almond or coconut milk, juice, or other liquid, as desired/needed for blending
  • honey, optional

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a blender and pulse until liquefied. Taste and add more ginger if desired, or add some honey for additional sweetness if needed. Serve immediately.

For more #HotSummerEats recipes, click the link below:

Disclaimer: Thank you to Gourmet Garden for providing samples and product to use for#HotSummerEats recipes without additional compensation. I was not asked to provide positive feedback. All opinions are my own. Please check them out on Facebook, Twitter,Instagram, and Pinterest for more information on their products.

Chaider

Chaider is an awesome fall treat; the perfect blend of hot apple cider and chai. It’s fall in a mug!

Chaider: A Fall Treat with Apple Cider and Chai | thepajamachef.comThere’s this great coffee shop in Ben’s college town, Athens, OH, called Donkey. Saying they are great is a total underestimation of their wonderfulness. They’ve won awards for having the best coffee in the state of Ohio and they totally deserve it! I lived in Athens for two years and went to Donkey on my first full day in town per the recommendation of a friend. I had no idea the love I would develop for that coffee shop, and not just because it was the place of our second date [and many more afterwards]. It’s the best coffee I’ve ever tasted, and the atmosphere inside is even better.  You can literally spend all day there, lounging in one of the comfy armchairs under the funky lights. It’s one of my favorite places in the world and I would seriously consider leaving Nashville behind to head back to that tiny college town just so I could frequent Donkey Coffee on a regular basis.

Chaider: A Fall Treat with Apple Cider and Chai | thepajamachef.comLike many coffee shops, Donkey serves up a variety of specialty seasonal drinks. I have no idea if they do the pumpkin thing, but I do know they do the Chaider thing. I’m sure to many folks, Chaider sounds a bit weird, but it’s actually pretty phenomenal. It’s this fun blend of apple cider and chai, perfectly spiced and served hot. It’s always in high demand during the fall since you can only get it for a few short months. It’s Ben’s favorite, and since we are 5+ hours away from Donkey, I just had to find a way to make it at home!

Chaider: A Fall Treat with Apple Cider and Chai | thepajamachef.comIn the past I have made chaider by blending fresh apple cider with some chai. Pretty simple. But this year, I think I finally found the secret to making authentic homemade chaider–fresh orange juice, cinnamon stick, and cloves. Boil and simmer, then remove cinnamon and cloves before serving. It takes a little more time but amps the flavors up SO much more. For this drink you’ll need to use coffee shop style chai, so either the bottled concentrate or the powdered stuff. Chai tea bags aren’t exactly the same thing. Donkey uses the powdered kind of chai [and has their own wonderful blend, in case you’re ever there in the non-fall months] so that’s what I used too.

Chaider: A Fall Treat with Apple Cider and Chai | thepajamachef.comWhen I made a batch of this on a recent Sunday afternoon, Ben said he felt like he was back at Donkey again. I’d consider that a win! Try it soon–you’ll love it! It’s a perfect drink for an afternoon walk in the woods to admire the leaves or a cozy night at home or whatever else suits your fancy in the fall. Ahhh, bliss.

Chaider: A Fall Treat with Apple Cider and Chai | thepajamachef.comone year ago: Pizza Frittata
two years ago: Lemon Herb Eggs in Ciabatta
three years ago: Candy Corn Pretzel Bites
four years ago: Pumpkin Cinnamon Rolls

Chaider

  • Servings: 2
  • Time: 10-15 minutes
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Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups apple cider
  • 1 1/2 cups chai [I use the powdered chai mix from Trader Joe’s–2 scoops + 1 1/2 cups water whisked together]
  • juice of 1/2 an orange
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 5 whole cloves

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and heat for 5-10 minutes or until hot.

Remove cinnamon stick and cloves, then divide between 2 mugs and serve hot.

Linked with Weekend Potluck

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer is a must for fall coffee drinking!

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer | thepajamachef.com

I love Pumpkin Spice Lattes from Starbucks like none other. I know, I know. They don’t contain pumpkin. I DON’T WANNA HEAR IT! They are delicious, and the lack of pumpkin isn’t my biggest gripe with them. But my biggest gripe with them is that they are so freaking expensive. Seriously, paying $5 for a grande isn’t something I do very often. So, I have a few of them every season, say that’s that, and go the DIY route to save some cash monies. I’ve made pumpkin spice lattes at home before with homemade syrup, but this method is MUCH easier for your pumpkin spice coffee fix. And bonus? It doesn’t have any weird ingredients–just your usual milk/cream or half and half, plus pumpkin, maple syrup, and spices. Easy easy!

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer | thepajamachef.com

Basically you just mix everything up on the stovetop and let it simmer away for a bit, then strain, chill, and enjoy! If you’re into pumpkin yogurt, you can stir the leftover pumpkin puree/spice mixture into some plain yogurt. Heavenly! I’ve made this in years past but this is my first go-round this year, and I just discovered the yogurt trick. It’s nice!

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer | thepajamachef.com

Normally, when I use flavored creamers I just like them with plain coffee. But we’ve recently discovered that this creamer with Apple Crisp Coffee from Paramount Coffee is incredible! [No affiliation, we just buy and love their coffee! It’s available online and sometimes TJ Maxx.] And why wouldn’t it be? Apple and pumpkin are the flavors of fall, right? I think this creamer would be tasty with almost any seasonal spiced coffee, or even with hot chocolate or chai. Mmm, the possibilities! Enjoy!

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer | thepajamachef.com

one year ago: Cream of Broccoli Soup with Cheese
two years ago: No Bake Tropical Energy Bites
three years ago: Pumpkin, Sausage, and Spinach Lasagna
four years ago: Southwestern Pepperjack Baked Penne

Homemade Pumpkin Spice Coffee Creamer

  • Servings: 2 cups/16 ounces
  • Time: 30 minutes
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from Next to Heaven

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole milk*
  • 1 cup heavy cream*
  • 3 tablespoons pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 4 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 cinnamon stick, optional
  • a few whole cloves, optional
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Whisk milk, cream, pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, and maple syrup together in a saucepan. Add the cinnamon stick and cloves, if using. Set over medium heat. Reduce heat to low when it gets steamy, then let it simmer for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. Use a fine sieve or a coffee filter set over a colander to strain out the cinnamon stick, cloves, and pumpkin puree/spices. Don’t skip this step! I usually strain everything in my sieve into a measuring cup, then pour the mixture into a jar or pitcher for storing in the fridge.

*I have also made this using all half and half, and while it might not be traditional “creamer” it is still really good! Use what you prefer. :)

 

 

Honey Lemon Thyme Iced Tea

If you were to come visit me, the first thing I’d do would be to have you take a glimpse of our porch. It’s pretty much my favorite thing ever in the summertime.

Honey Lemon Thyme Iced Tea on thepajamachef.com

We don’t really have room [or enough direct sunlight] to grow veggies, but every summer I grow tons of potted herbs. This summer we have rosemary, catnip, lemon thyme, parsley, chocolate mint, and spearmint [RIP summer savory]. I’m a lemon thyme newbie, and I am absolutely positively in loooove. Not only is the sweet and citrusy lemon thyme awesome in a tossed salad, but it makes a mean simple syrup that we’ve been chugging for the past two weeks straight. Seriously. Well, in my favorite Cold Brew Iced Tea… but we are SO addicted. [FYI Lipton has no idea who I am. I just like their Iced Tea.] It is so refreshing, smooth, and fun… a fabulous drink for the summer.

Honey Lemon Thyme Iced Tea on thepajamachef.com

If you’ve never had lemon thyme before, you should get yourself some just for this recipe. It’s wonderfully aromatic and fresh. If you can’t find any, you can substitute common thyme and add the zest of one lemon to the simple syrup. Basically, this simple syrup is a spinoff of my Iced Tea with Ginger-Mint Simple Syrup from last summer. Both are excellent in their own way, but what truly sets this Honey Lemon Thyme Simple Syrup apart is the honey base. Simple syrup is made by dissolving sugar in water on the stove, and infusing it with a variety of fruits, herbs, or any other additions of your choice. White sugar is my go-to sweetener for simple syrup, but I am so glad that I decided to experiment with honey this time for a bit of natural sweetness. It was a rockin’ success–the honey added a nutty, woodsy sweetness and paired perfectly with the tart lemon juice and the herby goodness of lemon thyme.

Honey Lemon Thyme Iced Tea on thepajamachef.com

Now, I haven’t tried this… but both Ben and I agree that a little bit of Bourbon would be an excellent addition to this iced tea for a little grown-up fun. Let me know if you decide to try it that way–but even if you don’t, be sure to make some Honey Lemon Thyme Simple Syrup to flavor your iced tea for the 4th of July or any other special [or ordinary] summer day. Enjoy!

Honey Lemon Thyme Iced Tea [a TPC original]
click to print

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 cup + 1 quart water, divided [filtered if you prefer]
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup lemon thyme, roughly chopped
  • 2 large “family-size” cold brew iced tea bags [or the equivalent of regular tea bags if you prefer iced tea made some other way… I like cold brew iced tea cause it’s easy]

Directions:

In a small saucepan, combine honey, sugar, 1 cup water, lemon juice, and lemon thyme. Stir over medium heat for 3-4 minutes until sugar dissolves. Turn heat to low then simmer for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and steep for 20 minutes.

While simple syrup is steeping, prepare iced tea. Combine 1 quart water and tea bags in a large pitcher [mine is probably ~1 1/4 quarts] and let steep for 8-10 minutes, or until tea is brewed to desired preference. Place in refrigerator to chill.

After syrup has steeped 20 minutes, pour syrup through a fine strainer into a large measuring cup or bowl. Refrigerate syrup, strainer and all [to catch any last lingering drops of syrup caught up in the lemon thyme].

After tea and syrup have chilled, stir in syrup to taste. I used a generous 1/4 cup and found that plenty sweet for me, but it was nowhere near Southern sweet tea so if that’s your thing, use more. Store extra syrup in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to a month.

Time: 2 hours [15 minutes active].

Yield: 6-8 servings tea, 2 cups simple syrup.

Linked with: Weekend Potluck.