What is Sahara Spice?
Sahara Spice is a tasty powder beverage mix that fuses extracts of spices – think cinnamon, nutmeg, clove and cayenne – with citrus (mainly lemon) and a touch of sweetness from Stevia. It’s a spice infusion, which is a new alternative to coffee, tea, and sodas. It’s the un-coffee,TM which tastes like a comfort food but doesn’t have the big regrets of comfort food. Since “herbal tea” is used to describe teas that don’t have caffeine (and therefore really don’t have “tea”), Sahara Spice is an “herbal tea” but with spices and fruits (and no tea). This is also (we recently learned) called a "tisane." Water is the ideal beverage, but let’s get real: even great water is boring sometimes, so Sahara Spice is here to spice it up.
What’s in Sahara Spice?
Ingredients: Spice and citrus essential oils; glucose; citric acid; reb a natural stevia leaf sweetener; ascorbic acid (vitamin C); silica; turmeric (natural color); dehydrated lemon juice.
Why does Sahara Spice use essential oils from spices rather than the actual spices?
Spices in powder form don’t mix with water well. Have you noticed how cinnamon floats on your coffee or latte? The essential oils that are in the dry powder give spices their flavors. Our goal was to make a delicious, natural beverage mix without the downsides of most tasty hot beverages, which often have lots of sugar, calories, and caffeine. Sahara Spice has just 10 calories per 12 ounce serving and is all natural. We extract the essences of the flavors we love and put them in a form that works in busy lives – stick packs that you can use anywhere in the beverage of your choice.
What sweetener does Sahara Spice use? What is Stevia?
For sweetness, we use an extract of the Stevia plant called Rebaudioside-A, which is an all-natural, high-intensity and zero calorie sweetener from the Stevia leaf (Stevia rebaudiana). Reb-A 97% is our supplier’s name for the Rebaudioside-A “glycoside.” A “glycoside” is a collection of organic compounds that forms a simple sugar. Our supplier obtains Reb-A 97% from Stevia plants with a process that uses water – not enzymatic or chemical modification – and this sweetener is not genetically modified. Our Stevia supplier advises that Reb A 97% is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”), exceeds the FDA’s “Generally Recognized As Safe” (“GRAS”) specifications, and is Self-Affirmed GRAS, as coordinated by the New York Medical College. Reb-A 97% comes from plants that have been selectively bred to increase the Reb-A content. This information is from our supplier’s website.
What is glucose?
Glucose, also called dextrose or grape sugar, is a component of natural sugar. Wikipedia says that glucose is a simple sugar (monosaccharide), cells use it as a source of energy, it is one of the main products of photosynthesis, and it starts cellular respiration. Glucose is naturally found in fruits, honey, and grains. Our products do not have any fructose, which has gotten a bad reputation, especially when it’s in the form of High Fructose Corn Sugar (HFCS). Sahara Spice has no HFCS and gets most of its sweetness from Stevia. Glucose helps it have great "mouth-feel," meaning that it has a little viscosity and isn't just the consistency of water.
Why use glucose and not cane sugar, erythritol, sorbitol or other substitute for sugar?
In our taste testing, with Stevia providing the sweetness, we tried other sugar substitutes for the “mouth-feel” that comes with glucose/sugar. We liked glucose the best; it is five times less expensive than cane sugar and ten times less expensive than erythritol (and less expensive than other substitutes); and with glucose, a serving of Sahara Spice is still just 10 calories and 2 grams of sugar for a 12 ounce serving. We would like to find the perfect sugar substitute for a reasonable price, but we haven’t found it yet.
What is Turmeric?
Turmeric is a spice (sometimes called an herb), which provides the natural yellow color of Sahara Spice. It’s often used in curries.
What’s not in Sahara Spice?
Sahara Spice has hardly any sugars -- just a little glucose -- and it is sweetened with Stevia. It has no fat, dairy, caffeine, gluten, soy, wheat, yeast, preservatives, trans fat, cholesterol, or animal derivatives. It also doesn’t have wacky ingredients, lots of caffeine or things we can’t pronounce, so you can drink it any time of day or night. And it doesn’t have any artificial ingredients or colors. Why would it, when natural tastes great and looks beautiful?
Is Sahara Spice gluten free? Vegetarian? Vegan? Wheat free? Fat free? Dairy free? Caffeine free? Soy free? Yeast free? Free of preservatives? Trans fat free? Cholesterol free? Free of animal derivatives? Free of artificial stuff?
Yes. It is all natural, has just 10 calories/serving, and it has antioxidants from 40% daily vitamin C. Sahara Spice has no fat, dairy, caffeine, gluten, wheat, yeast, preservatives, trans fat, cholesterol, or animal derivatives. It has about 2 mg of sodium per serving, but under FDA rules, 2 mg of sodium is 0% of sodium for the day.
How many servings are there in a box?
There are 10 servings per box, and each is in a stick pack. Each serving is for 12 ounces (one and a half cups) of water. Add more or less to get the taste you like.
How many calories per serving?
10 calories per serving.
Why is Sahara Spice a dry beverage mix in stick packs, rather than in liquid in bottles or other containers?
Our goal is to minimize packaging while maintaining performance. The mix has to be protected from moisture, etc., to keep it tasting… well, tasty. Since water comes from your faucet, and other companies have no qualms about shipping it in bottles and other containers all over the place, we decided to minimize our footprint and maximize efficiency. Plus, with just the mix (and no water), you can get exactly the taste you like by adding the amount of water that you choose to Sahara Spice, or you can add Sahara Spice to any other liquid you like (though it doesn't do well in milk). For more reasons, Think Outside the BottleTM.
Can I recycle the box? The stick packs?
You can recycle the box. The sticks are made of a foil that protects Sahara Spice from the elements. We can't say it is fully biodegradable because the State of California hasn't determined exactly what is required for that yet. If you know of something that fits the bill for performance, marketing and finance, please let us know at email@example.com. Thanks!
What can I mix Sahara Spice with?
Water (flat, fizzy or sparkling, hot, room temp, or cold); coconut water; juices, like white grape or apple cider; lemonade; or pretty much any liquid that you want to spice up; if you’re 21+, wine or liquor. We don’t think it mixes well with milk, but it’s tasty with milk alternatives like almond milk and soy milk. If you like it with something else, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
Does Sahara Spice have antioxidants?
Yes. It has antioxidants in the form of 30% of your recommended daily vitamin C.
Why does Sahara Spice just have vitamin C and no other vitamins, minerals, caffeine or other energy-drink staples?
We tried a bunch of drinks with other vitamins and wacky ingredients, and they just didn’t taste great, especially with hot water. We set out to make a delicious hot beverage, and we happily managed to make Sahara Spice taste great, hot or cold. Except for a little vitamin C, vitamins just didn’t meet the “delicious” requirement. And the weird energy shot ingredients just aren’t consistent with the idea that Sahara Spice is a natural drink that doesn’t artificially stimulate your body. Sahara Spice does have cayenne and other spice essential oils, and cayenne has long been thought to boost your metabolism and your mood by causing your body to release endorphins. However, we put in just enough cayenne to play off of the taste of the other delicious flavors, so we think you can drink Sahara Spice morning, noon, or night. If you want more vitamins or an artificial energy boost, take a vitamin pill or chug someone else’s drink, and then get that taste out of your mouth with a nice cup of Sahara Spice.
Is it really (very) spicy?
It’s really not spicy at all, but the spice flavors include cayenne essential oil, which is mildly spicy, and cinnamon and other spice essential oils, which can have hotter “notes.” ButSahara Spice is designed to be more like a very mild salsa rather than hot. Our founder doesn’t like to drink or eat things that are more than mildly spicy, and it tastes great to her. However, if you’re sensitive to cayenne or other spice flavors, Sahara Spice might not be right for you. The spices may settle, so stir, shake or swirl to mix. If spices settle to bottom, it will be stronger as you drink. If you want something really hot, try the drinks from Promethius Springs (www.prometheussprings.com/), or add Tabasco or cayenne to Sahara Spice. Be careful!
Does Stirville make any drinks with caffeine or other extreme energy drink-type ingredients?
No, but we’re not ruling out making a beverage mix with ingredients that naturally boost energy.
Really? We thought we did so well in reading your mind. Please send them to email@example.com.