If you're anything like me, you're 1) obsessed with Christmas, and
2) obsessed with festive beverages. Decadent eggnog, spiced cider, rich hot chocolate, and the occasional mulled wine are treats I look forward to year round — and imbibe in without the tiniest shred of restraint come November. Or at least I did, until Father Time started to take his toll on my metabolism, and I was forced to learn a few lessons in self-control, particularly when it comes to liquid calories.
However, I'm not here to cut back on the festive vibes or holiday spirit; quite the contrary! My new trick when it comes to a cup of cheer, sans excess fat and sugar? Tea. Sounds boring as heck, I know, but I'm here to show you otherwise. The brews I reach for when the temps drop and the Nat King Cole gets turned way, way up are packed with flavor and bursting with nostalgia.
Festive teas have helped me not only eliminate liquid calories but also curb my sweet tooth so I don't overindulge on desserts (trust me, I still eat 'em when I want to!). The result is a healthier body with more energy and pep to thrive all season long. Check out some of my favorites ahead; whether you're craving a creamy candy cane blend, a spicy cocoa, or nutmeg-dusted nog, there's a tea for every holiday mood.
DavidsTea Apple Cider
All the crisp, tangy flavor and spice of a mulled cider, but without the sugar.DavidsTea Apple Cider Tea ($24 for a large container) is made from real apples — not tea leaves! — with a bit of vanilla and spice for a toasty decaf treat.
The Republic of Tea Sip and Be Merry
The Republic of Tea'sSip and Be Merry ($11 for 50 tea bags) is described as a "festive creme brulee," and that's honestly the perfect way to explain it. Opt for this black tea if you're craving something in the caramel cream flavor zone.
Kusmi Tea Chocolat-Epices
Craving an abuelita hot chocolate with cinnamon? Definitely check out Kusmi Tea Chocolat-Epices ($17 for 20 sachets). Rich cocoa notes make this black tea a decadent treat.
DavidsTea Let It Snow
For me, the Holy Grail of holiday tea is DavidsTea Let It Snow ($10 for two ounces), an eggnog-inspired green tea with a kick of nutmeg and notes of vanilla. You get all the flavor, none of the saturated fat. It's seriously delightful.
Fortnum & Mason Christmas Spiced Tea
Fortnum & Mason Christmas Spiced Tea ($35 for four ounces) is less a low-cal dupe of another holiday drink and more a wonderful thing of its own. The cocoa and cloves in this black tea are particularly warming and cozy for a chilly Winter day.
Harney & Sons White Christmas
This white tea is a mellower, subtler, yet very refined nod to the holiday season. With a hint of cardamom and a little bit of vanilla, Harney & Sons White Christmas ($9 for 20 sachets) will keep you cozy and satisfied long past December. Think: cardamom latte, sans dairy, fat, and calories.
DavidsTea Candy Cane Matcha
If you're more of a matcha fan, try this candy cane blend. The creamy and sweet flavor of DavidsTea Candy Cane Matcha ($19 for 3.4 ounces) makes this earthy tea extra festive — and perfect for a latte this holiday season.
Celestial Seasonings Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride
Nod off to dreams of dancing sugar plums with this sugar-cookie-flavored caffeine-free herbal tea. Celestial Seasonings Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride ($8 for 20 tea bags) delivers a little taste of Christmas cookies while adding zero sugar or calories to your day
The Republic of Tea Gingebread Cuppa Cake
When the carb cravings come a-callin', brew up the Republic of Tea's Gingerbread Cuppa Cake ($11 for 20 tea bags). Rooibos — a red leaf from South Africa that's naturally caffeine-free — makes for a lovely base for cake-like tea flavors, including this Christmassy treat.
DavidsTea Hot Chocolate
DavidsTea Hot Chocolate ($10 for two ounces) is essentially what would happen if hot fudge and tea had a baby. This pu'ehr tea has a lot of caffeine, so it makes a fantastic morning drink if you need some energy to power you through Christmas shopping or back-to-back meetings.
This article originally published on PopSugar.com by DOMINIQUE MICHELLE ASTORINO