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What’s the Deal with Collagen Coffee?

A cup of coffee on a bamboo platter beside a spoon loaded with collagen powder.
yulisitsa/Shutterstock

It seems like collagen is becoming as common of a coffee additive as cream and sugar. So, we want to know: Why has collagen coffee become so popular? Should we get in on it? And most importantly, does it make your coffee taste weird?

Scroll through social media on any given morning, and you’ll find at least one self-proclaimed influencer adding this hydrolyzed white powder to their morning brew. Now that collagen coffee has been listed as one of 2020’s forecasted food trends, we expect to see it more and more often.

Of course, adding an expensive powder to coffee will certainly up the cost of your cup of joe. And most of us aren’t looking for a change in flavor or texture when it comes to our morning ritual. So, before we dive head first into this particular food trend, we have a couple questions.

Why Collagen Coffee?

If it will raise the price and possibly change the taste of our coffee, there has to be a good reason, right? Or is collagen coffee just a bunch of hype?

A quick web search on collagen will yield all sorts of supposed health benefits. Collagen itself is a protein that binds biological tissue, effectively helping to repair things like our skin, or the lining of our guts. It’s long been cited as a sort of fountain of youth in eastern medicine. Recently it has taken hold in the U.S., with many claiming it has cured their acne, joint pain, and stomach issues.

Critics say that consuming collagen on its own has no more significant benefit than consuming regular protein. They point out that your body builds collagen from component peptides. It doesn’t take ingestible collagen and send it ready-packed to your skin or stomach for use. Instead, it breaks down ingestible collagen into its component parts. Later, those components can be used to make more collagen or a variety of other necessary proteins.

However, recent studies have shown higher collagen intake reduces signs of aging and promotes faster wound healing. And it might be helpful for stomach conditions, like ulcers. More so, there are no adverse side effects. So, the most you’re risking in trying this food trend is a few twenty-dollar bills.

As for putting it in your coffee, that’s for convenience, not health. Coffee is already a staple for most of us. Adding protein to it is a fast and easy way to consume nutrients while on the go, or during busy mornings.

How Does It Taste?

All of that sounds great, and maybe even worth the price tag, unless, of course, it ruins our morning brew. But that’s perhaps the best part of this food trend: Hydrolyzed collagen is virtually tasteless.

That’s right. It has next to no effect on the flavor of your coffee, or anything else you add it to. What it does affect is the mouthfeel. Collagen gives any liquid a fuller, creamier texture. Many people find they like it in coffee because its reminiscent of full-fat cream. Others argue it makes their morning brew a bit gelatinous or gummy. Needless to say, collagen coffee isn’t for everyone.

That’s okay. Because while trendsetters seem to be all about scooping collagen into their coffee, there’s nothing wrong with sprinkling it over your yogurt or oatmeal instead. You’ll still get the collagen benefits. And whether they’re over-reported or not, no one’s claiming collagen to be negative. So this trend is one you can absolutely partake in. We plan to anyway!

Lauren Sakiyama Lauren Sakiyama
Lauren Sakiyama is a freelance writer with over a decade of experience in the hospitality industry. She has managed restaurants, country clubs, and large-scale event operations, but her passion has always been about the food. Read Full Bio »

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