The Good, the Bad and the Ugly Sides of Coffee

Coffee, just like other food and beverages, has its own benefits. However, if one takes more than what is recommended, some side effects can be experienced. This is a fact that is not only true about coffee but is also applicable to all the food that you eat. If you have included coffee as a part of your fast metabolism diet, you should be aware of its good, bad and ugly sides.

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Top Coffee Health Trends

Contributed by Jennifer Dawson

 Photo by Nathan Dumlao 

Coffee is an adaptable and versatile drink, which can have health benefits if prepared in the right way. It can be consumed black or with added milk and sugar, but in recent years, the popularity of alternative flavor combinations has increased. In the USA, coffee is a $40bn a year business, but the benefits of drinking coffee will depend upon how it is prepared. Below are some recent trends that can make your coffee delicious, while improving your physical health.
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New Keurig? 4 Tips for Maintaining Your Beloved Coffee Maker

A Keurig can make a great cup of coffee in under a minute, and you don’t have to worry about grinding beans or measuring water every time you want a refreshing beverage. While these devices should last for quite some time, there are few steps that you will need to take to avoid common issues such as clogged hoses and sediment in the water reservoir. Here is a quick look at four maintenance tips that will keep your Keurig working flawlessly in the coming years.
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Coffee Connoisseur: How to Become a Savant in the World of Coffee

After crude oil, coffee is the most valuable commodity in the world, and is the most widely consumed liquid after water and tea. Over the last few decades, American coffee culture has risen to widespread proportions due to the prominence of Starbucks, the largest coffee retailer in the planet; as a consequence, more people are showing interest in becoming coffee connoisseurs.

To increase your coffee knowledge, you have to do more than hang out at Starbucks. Here are four ways you can increase your knowledge of this fascinating crop and beverage:

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Quality Treats: 4 Foods You Have To Take Time To Enjoy

Guest post contributed by Kara Masterson

In our fast-paced society, it seems like the faster that we can consume food, the better. Millions of Americans rush to fast food restaurants on their way home from work in order to grab something that can be put in their hands and scoffed down in under a half hour. However, some of the most special foods are the ones that take the time to enjoy. Plus, as it turns out, it’s much healthier for our bodies to consume food slowly in order to allow our digestive systems to build up enzymes that will break it down adequately. Here are some of our favorite foods that are meant to be savored, not inhaled.
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Does Drinking Coffee Have Health Benefits?


My husband would like for the answer to be yes!  Most of us enjoy a cup of coffee or two everyday. If you’re like me, you stumble into the kitchen first thing to get your brew on.  Don’t you love that delightfully rich aroma when you open the can?  Not only is the smell of coffee a pleasant eye opener, recent studies show that consuming up to three 8-ounce cups per day has proven health benefits. Who knew? My DH will be thrilled!

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Pumpkin Pie Spiced Coffee

pumpkin pie spice

I’ll bet you have pumpkin pie spice sitting on your spice rack. 🙂 You don’t have to let it sit there any longer!  


Lately I’ve been putting a tablespoon of pumpkin pie spice on top of the ground coffee inside the coffee maker. Add 12 cups of water and brew. It makes a delicious pot of Pumpkin Pie Spiced Coffee. Add a little cream and sugar and you’re all set!! Save a ton of money and make it at home.

5 Tips for Creating the Perfect Iced Coffee

Iced Coffee
Image courtesy of tiverylucky /


Summer will soon be ending.  However, good iced coffee can be enjoyed all year long! Here are some tips to help you make the perfect iced coffee drink.

  • Begin brewing with fresh coffee beans.  If you don’t have a grinder, you can pick up an inexpensive one at a local store.
  • Add your cream/milk and sugar to taste before it cools. You can store brewed coffee left over from the morning in a sealed container in the fridge. In the afternoon, add ice, and enjoy!
  • Be sure to use ice that tastes good! Sometimes it is better to buy a bag of ice if you don’t have a water filtration system. Ice from tap water usually doesn’t taste very well. 🙂
  • Brew your coffee a little stronger because the ice may weaken the flavor.
  • Have fun with it! Try adding whip topping, nutmeg, cinnamon, or chocolate shavings for a yummy treat.

If this sounds great but you’re just too busy – here’s a little short cut. Try this recipe that uses instant coffee. 😉


Iced Vanilla Coffee


  • 2 Tsp instant coffee
  • 1 1/2 Tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 Tsp cold water
  • 1 1/4 C milk
  • Chocolate shavings
  • Sugar to taste


  1. Put the first 5 ingredients into a blender.
  2. Blend until the ingredients are smooth and frothy.
  3. Add the cold milk and blend until all the ingredients are well blended.
  4. Pour over ice add the chocolate!



Butter Toffee Keurig Kcup Coffee – $11.99 per 24ct Box!



Butter Toffee Keurig Kcup Coffee is medium roast flavored coffee with a delicious buttery caramel flavor.  Cross Country Cafe is gearing up for another weekend sale!  You can snag a 24ct box for $11.99!

This sale is live now and runs through Sunday, 7/21 at midnight EST.

That price blows away the current Amazon pricing of $16.95.  Get a $1.00 coupon good towards your next purchase and free shipping on orders over $59.00!

Easy Cinnamon Latte at Home ~ No Special Equipment Needed!

Cinnamon Latte Main

Easy Cinnamon Latte at Home

Even if you don’t have all the fancy equipment, you can make a Cinnamon Latte at home easily and quickly. It will give you a great savings over those expensive alternatives at the coffee bars. A Cinnamon Latte is nothing more than coffee with skim milk or half and half and a few extras like whipped cream and freshly ground cinnamon . The only equipment you really need to have a good coffee maker and your favorite coffee blend. If you have those, you’re well on your way to making an awesome Cinnamon Latte for pennies compared to what you spend at a coffee house.

Steaming Your Milk for a Cinnamon Latte

Steaming milk for Cinnamon Latte is simple when you use the microwave. Pour your milk or half and half in a microwave-safe cup. I use an extra coffee mug that I know works well in the microwave. Heat your half and half or milk for about a minute to a minute and a half. That’ll make it nice and hot and steamy, and won’t cool your coffee off when you mix the two. Be careful not to boil the half and half, because it can scorch.  So no more than a minute and a half in the microwave! You’ll find that even if you’re not making a Cinnamon Latte,  steaming your milk first before putting in your coffee will keep a coffee hotter for a lot longer!

Easy Cinnamon Latte at Home ~ No Special Equipment Needed!

Easy Cinnamon Latte at Home ~ No Special Equipment Needed!


  • ½ mug coffee
  • ½ mug half n half or milk, steaming hot
  • vanilla sugar or sweetener, to taste
  • whipped cream
  • ground cinnamon


  1. Mix the coffee, steamed half n half, and sugar in a mug.
  2. Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with ground cinnamon.
  3. Enjoy!

Changing Up Your Sweetener with Cinnamon Latte

When you go to the coffee shop, they have all kinds of flavors of syrup. Well the syrups are great and give you a lot of flavor, but I like switching up my sugars or sweeteners. At a local farmers market I found vanilla sugar available for $4 for a pint. Simply put, vanilla sugar is sugar that has a vanilla bean in it.  The vanilla bean flavor permeates the sugar, making it a richer sweet flavor.   It makes for great flavoring for coffee as well as on things like for oatmeal or cereal. Another way to add another flavor to your sugar is boil it into a syrup (equal parts water and sugar), then pouring it into a jar with flavorings such as cinnamon sticks or anise pods.  Making your own flavored syrups are simple and easy and they also make great gifts. So why drink plain coffee when you can drink something that has a lot more flavor and is just like your favorite coffee house’s Cinnamon Latte?  Save some money and make a Cinnamon Latte at home!