dandelion root coffee alternative gluten-free recipe

Dandelion Root Coffee

With March approaching, I’m starting to think about the possibility of a spring detox and one of my favorite healing roots –dandelion. Dandelion is a fantastic liver cleanser and spring is the perfect season for liver support.

According to Ayurveda and Chinese medicine, dandelion root has bitter, sweet and cooling properties, making it optimal for the pitta dosha.

Although I use various parts of the dandelion for healing, here, I’m focusing on the root which is a good blood purifying herb. The root is also a useful remedy for stomachaches, and in herbal medicine is said to be beneficial for hypoglycemia and high blood pressure.

How can you get these benefits? According to The Way of Herbs, “roasted dandelion root makes a pleasant beverage that can be consumed daily.  It combines well with “kukicha” tea, or chicory root.” I take my dandelion root with chicory which gives the beverage a deliciously bitter, coffee-like flavor. I also add cinnamon sticks to my Dandelion Root Coffee, because I love cinnamon and also consider it a “super” spice with extremely healing properties –though that’s a post for another time. Here’s a most delicious way to take healing dandelion root.

Dandelion Root Coffee
Serves: 2-4
  1. Place water, dandelion root, chicory root and cinnamon stick in a pot
  2. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer for 5 minutes
  3. Pour coffee through a small mesh strainer into cups and serve

I was taught 20 years ago during my Ayurvedic training that it is important when making tea with roots to boil for 2-3 minutes to release their healing properties.

And I cannot forget to mention the synchronistic dandelion incident that took place with my friend Kelly from celiacchicks.com.  When I was in New York City in fall 2009 to promote The Gluten-Free Almond Flour Cookbook, I was feeling a little sloggy and craving my dandelion coffee.  At one of the signings (which Kelly so graciously arranged!) I grabbed myself a hot water; Kelly whipped out a bag of dandelion tea (from her purse, no less!) and proffered it upon me.  Hence began our discussion of our mutual love affair with the dandelion root.

My fascination with this amazing herb is also chronicled on my other website My Dandelion is a Flower.


  1. Adrienne says

    This sounds very good. I’ll have to try it. I’ve also been thinking about a cleanse. I might do a combination of recommendations by Dr. Oz and Kathleen Freston (Veganist). Dr. Oz recommended abstaining from grains of all kinds and replacing them with cruciforous vegetables, like broccoli, which cleanse the liver. I’ve been meaning to quit dairy, as I’m intolerant to it, but addicted. The 21 day cleanse that Kathy Freston recommends, without meat, dairy, sugar or alcohol, might cure me of my sugar addiction. It’s a good idea. Thanks for your inspiration!

  2. Deb Plummer says

    I drink a product made of pulverized dandelion and chicory roots, and I think barley — (I don’t have the bag anymore to check!) called Dandi-Blend. It is delicious and I think the addition of cinnamon is a great idea!! I have replaced all but my first cup of coffee with this drink. Can be enjoyed hot or cold — I drink it hot because it is winter… :-)

      • Deanna says

        Dandy Blend claims to be gluten-free on their website because gluten isn’t water soluble. But even the best mesh strainers can let some parts of grains through. Seems like the company has a weird understanding of the meaning of the term “gluten free.”

        • says

          Dandy blend has been Elisa tested and shown to be gluten free according to the information on the Dandy Blend web site. The reason is that the way that they make it is to brew the mixture then freeze dry the filtered beverage. They are not using the kinds of filers you or I would use at home. What they say is that the gluten does not extract into the water used for brewing. You can go to the company’s web site to see the copy of the Elisa test.

          The same is true for Teeccino, a roasted chicory root coffee alternative that also includes barley. I talked to the company’s dietician some years ago after being concerned that they had falsely labeled their product gluten free. They post the Elisa test results on their web site as well.

  3. says

    I am really enjoying these post Elana. My husband is now addicted to licorice root tea. He’s always got it in his hand :) I love it when you speak ayurvedic to us too! So informative. Thanks Elana.

  4. says

    the approach of spring always makes me look forward to dandelion. Though usually the small greens- not usually the root. Can you roast a fresh root?

    my son cracks me up- he eats the flowers as one of his favorite outside snacks, and the leaves, and nibbles the stems while telling people “you should eat this more, especially if you eat sugar too much.” tell me they’re not listening.

    maybe this year i’ll add a new beverage to the mix, cause i do miss coffee!

        • says

          Hi Nicole,

          You can grind the dandelion root or leave it in chunks. Either way, I would recommend boiling it for 2-3 minutes in order to extract the healing benefits of the herb from the root.

          Hope you enjoy,

  5. says

    This sounds great. I used to use commercial coffee substitutes until I found out they had gluten in them. I’ll have to try this.

    I didn’t know you had a gardening site! My husband Steve has an organic gardening site I think you might enjoy: <a href=http://www.grow-it-organically.com He used to teach classes at Stanford University.

  6. Diana says

    I love dandelions, I cringe when I hear the chemicals and so forth that people use to get rid of them. Love roasted dandelion root tea and never thought of adding cinnamon- will have to try it!

  7. says

    I’ve been really wanting to try dandelion coffee for quite a while now. So far I’ve been taking dandelion root as a diruetic any time I feel I need to “cleanse”. Although I don’t do this often, it is a very powerful, healing root. Now I know how to make my own herbal coffee! :)

  8. says

    Thanks for the enlightenment? I appreciate your sharing your Ayurvedic knowledge/training with us. I so enjoy it and find it fascinating.

    xo Lexie

  9. says

    I do a cleanse every spring too, although I’ve never had dandelion root coffee. This looks like a great detoxifying combo. Can’t wait to try it, I love your blog!

  10. Angela P says

    Thanks for sharing! I’m hypoglycemic, so I am definitely going to check this out. I also enjoyed learning about the benefits of licorice root. Any chance you’ll add an Ayurveda section to your website? :-) I would love to learn more about it! Also, are there any books you recommend for someone who knows nothing about Aryurveda, or any other ancient medicines, but would love to learn (ahem, me!)?

    Thanks! Your website and cookbook have been incredible resources for my paleo family.

  11. Joey says

    The first time I drank Dandelion Coffee was back in 1971. My husband and his friend opened a health food store up in Northern Ontario and sold the coffee bags. This coffee had the dandelion root and chicory plus roasted soy beans and other assorted ingredients that were very beneficial to health. I still drink this to this day and I can recommend this type of drink to anyone who loves an alternative healthy beverage.

  12. Jenny says


    I’m not even gf but I’m so loving your site! I was treated by an ayurvedic practitioner in NYC for ovarian cysts and have been a believer ever since. She prescribed a “paste” of alfalfa honey, licorice root powder and turmeric and I just noticed some fresh turmeric root at my local grocers – do you have any recipes or uses for the fresh root?



  13. Cathy in Georgia says

    I’m allergic to dandelion flowers & leaves. Would the roots bear the same oils/properties as the leaves? I know that lobelia flowers are toxic, but the leaves are good for respiratory conditions. Your thoughts?


    • Dana says

      I know this is late, but in case anyone runs across this comment and has the same question: If you have a true allergy to a plant, you are reacting to the plant’s proteins, so yes, the root would cause a reaction too.

      You can try chicory instead, but be careful til you know whether you are OK with it. It’s distantly related to dandelion. Probably not closely enough to matter, but I know some people who are allergic to ragweed have trouble with chamomile, so it doesn’t hurt to say something.

      Elana: Ayurveda’s not the only tradition that says to boil roots in water to get their goodness out. Other traditions that use herbs teach the same thing. Any time you’ve got a woody part, or hard seeds, they need to be made into a decoction rather than an infusion–boiled in water rather than having just-boiled water added to them. Pretty cool, the similarities in various natural-medicine disciplines around the world!

  14. Patti Krueger says

    I can buy dandelion root thru my coop, but it is not roasted. Do you need to roast it for the tea? And if so, how do you roast? Thanks.

    • Tara says

      I bought some dandelion root at the store today and now got back home and checked the recipe and discovered that it’s supposed to be roasted! Did you ever find an answer to this question? I’m wondering if it could just be toasted in a skillet or on a baking sheet in the oven.

      • Doreen says

        I know this is an old post, but thought I would mention that I read that if you buy the root dried, you can roast it at 250 degrees for 45 minutes. Roast fresh, scrubbed, towel dried roots 2 1/2 hours at 250 degrees, with door cracked open, stirring every 15 minutes.

  15. says

    My favorite tea is dandelion root (liver) yarrow (anti-inflammatory) and fenugreek (for the lungs)…. it is my go to drink for when I am feeling a little under the weather or need to cleanse

    • Vickie M. says

      Lynn, how much of each do you use? I love all of these and would like to try your tea. Is the yarrow fresh or dried? Thanks

  16. Rin says

    I am just enjoying my first cup of this coffee (although I added cardamom and some coconut milk)….better than real coffee! Thank you!

  17. Cathy in Georgia says

    Well, I just answered my own question: If you have an allergy to ragweed, you may have an allergic reaction to dandelion coffee.

    Bummer. You guys all had me excited about the possibility of a good coffee substitute!


  18. says

    A friend bought me dandelion root ‘coffee’ (I think she’s worried by the vast amount of espressos I consume), but I haven’t gotten around to giving it a try. I certainly will now – great, informative post.

  19. says

    I really enjoyed this post. I came here looking for your peppermint pattie recipe to make a treat for my son and found lots more :-)

    I thought you might be interested in a post I just wrote on using a french coffee press. I make a coffee substitute every morning in it and it works great! Now I will have to try your recipe!

    Here is the link to my post: http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/the-best-french-press-coffee-maker/


  20. Rachel says

    I tried some dandelion root tea this morning. I was too lazy to try your recipe here, and it was a bagged tea anyway. The roasted flavor is delicious! I’ll have to start consuming it regularly. I’m so glad there are foods in this world that are both tasty and healthy :)

  21. Gloria B says

    I am wondering about the answer to the questions about roasting fresh raw dandelion roots. We have tons of dandelions in our yard in the spring and summer and we do not use any pesticides or herbicides to treat our yard. I would love to find a good purpose for these prolific flowers.

    BTW…thanks for this recipe! My daughter has recently found Dandi-Blend and loves it. This sounds like a fun recipe to try!!

  22. Christie says

    Just wanted to say thanks for sharing all of your valuable info. I have switched my 7 year old son to a gluten free – casein free diet, and your recipes have made it so much easier to feed my whole family this way!

  23. Tanja says

    Hello Elana,

    a friend gave me the link to your webpage. Since then I am frequently surfing on your page. Thanks for this great recipes!

    Today I tried the dandelion coffee..and it is just great.
    I was seeking for a while how I can quit drinking coffee and now I know how!

    Thanks for this great idea!

    Take care

  24. Jessika says

    Does this have coffee caffeine in it? So far I drink non-caffeinated Dandelion tea in the evenings but I like my morning coffee for the caffeine kick. This sounds great and I’d love to try it, but I just wanted to cover this base first:)

  25. Liz says

    I use Dandy Blend instant beverage, I admire you taking the time to create your own. I just came across this alternative and truly LOVE it. My skin is radiant and I know it is cleansing me from the inside out. :)

  26. Jessica says

    I am so excited to try this!! I’ve been drinking coffee for the past 10 years and now have stopped as I’ve been on an anti-inflammatory diet for the past month. Though I don’t miss the caffeine, I desperately miss the taste of coffee!! Thank you for posting this :)

  27. Tee-Ann says

    I began a community garden where we are fortunate to have a large number of Ukrainian gardens. One of them is always plucking the dandelions before overzealous weeders get to them. She makes dandelion tea all the time. When spring comes, I will be sure to get the recipe from her and post it here.

    Good health to all.


  28. Nancy B. says

    In the spring, our field is solid dandelions. They’re so big and beautiful. I love them because it so means winter is over (Pacific NW). When the grass starts growing, it covers the dandelions, but for a few weeks in the spring – dandelion heaven. A couple of years ago, I harvested roots from a few big plants. I scrubbed and “roasted” them at 225 for a couple of hours. And then chopped them and boiled them. A lot of work for one cup. The drink was sooooo good. The dried stuff in the stores is no substitute. It was amazing and felt good too. I love our dandelions. I’d like to hear the real way to process them.

  29. says

    I’m interesting in trying this “coffee” since it helps lower blood pressure, but am wondering if it would interact in any way with the medication I am currently taking. Wonder if a pharmacist would know–have wondered the same thing about hibiscus tea!

  30. MariBeth says

    Anybody know if dandelion is strongly detoxing or just a mild detox? I am breastfeeding and don’t want to dump a whole lot of toxins right now.

  31. Michelle Pac says

    Wow, I just tried this. This is something completely outside my normal box. This coffee is really good. Thank you so much for posting this recipe. I’m honestly pumped.

    Also, wanted to let you know that all the recipes I’ve ever tried, and I’ve been visiting your site since ’09 when we found my husband has a gluten sensitivity. I’ve been ever so slowly incorporating your healthy recipes into our lives.

    I’ve pre ordered your new cookbook. Honestly, you haven’t let me down with your recipes once. Thank you so much for what you do. My family and I have benefited from it immensely.

  32. Lou says

    I was so excited to try this that I bought a pound of each of the ingredients :) When I made it, though, it was soooo bitter to me I could hardly drink it!

    Does anyone have any suggestions to cut down the bitterness? I’ll still keep drinking it as is for the health benefits, but if anyone knows it would be a tremendous help!

    • Vickie M. says

      Lou, To cut down on the bitterness you may want to try several things: cutting back on the amounts by half,less time steeping,or more of one root over the other. Try each by themselves to know their flavor than add the cinnamon to each to see if you like the taste. Adding a natural sweetener may also help. As for me there are days I drink mine hot,cold or room temperature. You’ll find you “cup of tea”,or coffee as Elana puts it, don’t give up!!

  33. Vickie Morris says

    I am 56 yrs. old and have been drinking Dandelion Tea since I was in my 20’s. I had an old small book on Dandelion and all the things you could make with it, it was great. I’ve never added anything to it though, I’m looking forward to trying this recipe. Thanks for the input on boiling the roots to help with the healing properties, I have always poured the boiling water over and steeped it. Having a cup with one of your muffin recipe’s sounds delicious.

  34. Pam Buckner says

    I love this recipe!!! I have been missing coffee and this hits the spot!! Also I have been missing mochas so I had an idea… I made your hot cocoa recipe and instead of adding the boiling water I added the dandelion root coffee and PRESTO!!! Mocha!!!! yay… even better with a dollop of coconut whip cream on top!!

  35. says

    Nice blog comment chicory I like chicory this is hallty is the valuable herb which for a long time has won popularity in

    national medicine.Chicory was also often prescribed by herbalists of recent centuries to cure a whole host of ailments;

    the herbalist of the middle ages often recommended herbal remedies made from the chicory roots as tonics, as

    laxatives, and as diuretics.

  36. Julia says

    When I started to drink chicory as a coffee substitute, it was so good, I couldn’t imagine it being any better. Then I found chicory&dandelion recipe:) Every sip made me healthier, in fact even writing about it makes me healthier. And finally(?) Elana, I found your post about adding cinnamon and importance of boiling the drink! Thank you for transforming my mornings from great to divine!

  37. Jason says

    If I have cut and sifted dandelion root but don’t have roasted – how can I roast the cut and sifted roots myself? Thanks!

  38. Kristin says


    Can I seriously thank you from the bottom of my heart? I have been on a healing journey for 2+ years and espresso/coffee seems to creep back in. It’s my favorite tastes because of the bitter. I have tried other things, but boiling and adding the cinnamon makes it so perfect! I don’t feel deprived. Thank you! I also adore your website, recipes, stories. You are my go-to stop. Thank you for sharing with us all! Blessings!!

  39. Claire says

    mmmm:) Enjoying this today with some homemade cashew/macadamia nut milk:)

    Came out a little strong for me, but just added some hot water and a sprinkle of turmeric on top…yummy!

  40. Oriane says

    Recommendations on where to buy dandelion/chicory root and what kind to get?

    Specifically is it a powder that you actually consume or chunks that you steep and then remove?

  41. Andi says

    this works well with the addition of a little raw carob powder too! yum! I use a french press, or a stovetop percolator. Had to fiddle with the amounts to get to my liking, but it’s definitely worth tinkering with. I still miss coffee, but this really does satisfy that craving for me. It’s a bit too bitter for me straight, but perfect with a little coconut milk.

  42. says

    Elana, have you ever heard anything about it being dangerous to drink dandelion or chicory while pregnant? I was drinking both – separately – earlier this Fall when I was detoxing and quitting coffee to clear up a chronic yeast overgrowth (along with alcohol and sugar), which worked, by the way. I stopped drinking both when I found out I was pregnant, but I really miss them and would love to try your combination. Thank you for everything you do!

  43. joeyz51 says

    I started drinking Dandelion Blend Coffee back in 1971. Yep, that’s right 1971. When I lived in Canada we owned a store called the Golden Granary. We used to sell a Dandelion coffee you had to brew on the stove in a pot. I can’t recall what all was in it, but I loved it. Then years later they came out with an instant coffee like the one Elana has put together, and I buy it at the local Herb Store. It’s very tasty!

  44. Laura Hofer says

    Great recipe and easy to make! I found both roasted roots in a local, organically oriented small grocery. A tasty alternative to the teas I have been drinking since I gave up coffee!

  45. Lisa says

    Elana, Thank you so very much for posting this recipe! I am extremely grateful to you because I love the flavor and have struggled all of my adult life with the addiction to coffee. To put it bluntly, the caffeine in coffee makes me potentially bitchy, edgy, reactive, moody, and yet because of the wonderful flavor and addictive jolt, I couldn’t let it go. I also have suffered from sleep issues, so it was silly to keep going in this destructive cycle. I wouldn’t sleep, then drink coffee to get going, and on and on it went. This dandelion coffee did it for me, finally I am free. I didn’t do the Dandy Blend because I am gluten-intolerant and couldn’t be sure if it was safe. And this recipe is YUMMY!!!!

    • Mary Himmer says

      Dandy Blend is gluten free, so wouldn’t have barley. I have celiac disease and can have Dandy Blend should I so choose, but as an herbalist, I would prefer making something like this recipe.

      • says

        Hi Judith,

        Sometimes that happens right after I do a post and link to a product. Even though my site feels small and intimate more than 30,000 people visit here each day :-)

        Check back with that vendor in the next week or so and I bet they’ll have more product.

        xo Elana

  46. Judith says

    I saw in an earlier comment that you said we can grind the roots or use them in chunks. Is there a reason why I would grind them if I don’t have to?
    By the way I tried this using your “instant” recipe using tea bags. It was so yummy, I am going to purchase the bulk herbs so I can make it up ahead and keep it in the refrigerator. It would be pretty expensive to make several cups a day using the tea bag method. However, that said it’s great to know I can always bring it with me using the tea bags. Thank you so much!

  47. Tam says

    This is delicious! I was worried that I might have bought too much of the ingredients, but now I’m not sure if I bought enough! :) This is going to be my new go-to drink every morning. Love the fact that it’s good for me and LOVE the taste!

  48. Laura says

    This looks great! Must try! I was diagnosed with low thyroid a few years back, and found that a whole foods vegan diet greatly improved my symptoms but I still feel tired sometimes (I’m sure the coffee isn’t helping my thyroid)..

  49. says

    Dandelion root coffee- GLUTEN ADVISORY!!! Teccino has barley in it; barley contains gluten. i went to buy some yesterday and was so glad I read the label.

  50. Nancy says

    HI Elana: Quick question? Do you have a source that you love for dandelion and chicory root? I have been looking locally and have struck out many times. I’m craving to make this tea as I am vigilant about eliminating decaf coffee from my health regime.
    I know that in a pinch I could use a teabag of dandelion and one of chicory, but being the holistic foodie that I am, I really prefer my own preparation filled with my intention. Many thanks for whatever your can share with me! In kindness – Nancy

  51. Magdalena says

    I absolutely love this beverage. I have it daily. It’s much better than coffee, as far as I’m concerned. Thank you for sharing!

  52. Miriam says

    I finally bit the bullet and gave up my excessive coffee drinking, I’ve been suffering from digestive issues and I think a hormonal imbalance. I remembered seeing this post and ordered the ingredients through Amazon. i received them last night and tried this drink last night and I’m in heaven! It’s a great bold flavor , and I gotta say it’s better than coffee! Not to mention that the ingredients have healing properties, I’m so happy! I hope to heal and maybe drink coffee once in a blue moon.
    thank you !

  53. stephanie says

    I just wanted to share my experience with drinking dandelion and chicory blend as a morning hot drink:) I grind them up as I would coffee beans, put into a french press and then it up with cocoa butters and MCT oil (for creamy added yumminess). Its so relish and i have never looked back and miss coffee at all:)

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