Warm cocktails are the epitome of cozy. On a dark winter’s evening, snuggled on the couch in front of a roaring fire a cup of coffee can complete the experience. After a long walk in the snow, a warm mug to defrost cold fingers is better than any custom made hand warmers.
Not forgetting those who live in warmer climates. It’s true that as the heat of the day settles, a warm beverage is sometimes essential to ward off the night-air chill.
Coffee cocktails can appear intimidating to the novice when pristinely presented at a fancy bar or restaurant. The smooth peaks of whipped cream, delicate garnish, and rich colors, shining through the thick glass can seem like a step too far for the at-home experience.
The question I always wondered was, can you make a warm coffee cocktail at home?
Yes, it’s easier than it may first appear! I’ve set up a list of 12 mouthwatering, easy to follow recipes that ensure the perfect pour, even in your home kitchen. They are all based on the simple cup of black coffee, so no fancy equipment needed!
Basic Instructions And Equipment
To start any of these recipes you’ll need coffee. Yes, instant can be used but I wouldn’t recommend it. To get a full-bodied, rich flavor you really want to use fresh coffee, ideally, coffee beans ground at home.
Once you’ve ground your coffee beans, the next step is to brew it. A drip machine, V60, AeroPress, or french press will all do nicely. For all these recipes you’ll need around ¾ cup black coffee so the next thing to consider is your glass.
An Irish Coffee mug is perfect. Click here to check them out at Amazon. The glass allows a stunning presentation to impress your friends and family. A latte glass would do fine as well or any glass mug designed for hot drinks. If you don’t have access to any of these a standard mug will do fine, it’s just a bit more difficult to judge volumes.
Whilst the coffee is brewing, add some freshly boiled water to your cocktail glass or mug. This preheats it and keeps the drink warmer for longer.
So you have the glass warming and the coffee brewing. The next step is to consider toppings. All these cocktails have the option of adding whipped cream.
Put that can of squirty cream back in the fridge! If you’ve made it this far, we’re going to do this properly.
The amount of cream to use depends on the number of cocktails desired. Generally, 1 oz (2 tablespoons) of cream is required per coffee but it’s easier to whip up around ½ cup or more than trying with tiny amounts.
Once the cream is ready and the coffee is brewed, empty the hot water out of your mug. Add the coffee to the warm glass plus the alcoholic ingredients and any sweeteners (see individual recipes). To top the cocktails, hold a spoon upside down over the mug. Pour the whipped cream gently over the spoon so that it lies on the surface of the coffee.
Finally, add your garnish and voila! A perfect coffee cocktail to relax and enjoy in the comfort of your own home.
1. Classic Irish Coffee
This one is a popular choice, simple and delicious. Traditionally served in a glass mug, it’s best to preheat the cup with hot water to keep the drink warmer for longer.
To your fresh brewed cup of coffee, add 1 teaspoon of light brown sugar and stir until dissolved. Next add a shot of Irish Whiskey to the cup.
In a large bowl whisk some heavy cream until soft peaks start to form. Take a warm tablespoon and hold it over the coffee whiskey brew, upside down so the curved side of the spoon faces up. Pour the cream over the spoon gently so that it forms a thick layer without breaking the surface of the coffee.
Garnish with a pinch of cocoa powder or chocolate flakes for a decadent flourish.
2. Caramel Irish Coffee
Similar to an Irish coffee this recipe appeals to those with a sweet tooth. Like me. I have a weakness for caramel.
Once the coffee is brewed, alongside the shot of whiskey a shot of Irish cream and butterscotch schnapps is added. Add the cream as with the traditional drink and top with caramel syrup.
This one makes an excellent dessert drink!
3. Irish Winter
This one is another twist on the classic Irish Coffee. Alongside the whiskey add equal parts of coffee liqueur such as Kahlua. Irish cream can also be added in equal parts to enhance the creaminess of the drink.
Top with whipped cream and chocolate power. Enjoy!
4. French Connection Coffee (Cafe Amore)
This warming cocktail adopts a similar basis to the Irish coffee. It utilizes the fresh brewed black coffee and the whipped cream. Instead of whiskey it calls for equal measures of Amaretto and Cognac.
The rich nutty flavors are enhanced if you garnish this drink with shaved almonds to round off the flavors.
5. Mexican Coffee
From France, we move to Mexico with this punchy combo, bound to warm you on even the coldest of evenings!
To the classic cup of black coffee add 1 shot of Kahlua and 1 shot of Tequila (or half a shot of each if you’re already a bit tipsy!). Top the drink with the whipped cream and enjoy!
6. Bavarian Coffee
A lovely fresh twist, this drink incorporates ½ shot of peppermint schnapps and ½ shot Kahlua to your cup of joe.
Stir in a teaspoon of sugar and top it with whipped cream for a delicious after-dinner treat.
7. Warm Maple Bourbon
This is a warm twist on the Maple Bourbon Smash. To your cup of black coffee add a double shot of bourbon plus 2 tbsp of maple syrup for sweetness.
In a separate bowl whisk heavy cream with 2 tbsp maple syrup and use this to top off the coffee.
A pinch of grated nutmeg is the perfect garnish to round off the sweeter notes with an earthy, nutty finish. Delicious.
8. Bailey’s Irish Cream Coffee
A simple classic, the ease of preparing this cocktail does not compromise any of the flavors.
It is, as the title suggests, 50ml (double shot) of Irish Cream stirred into your cup of java. That’s it!
If you want to add some decadence then topping with whipped cream and a sprinkle of chocolate flakes makes this treat into a dessert worthy of praise from any guest.
9. Cafe Don Juan
This cocktail marries rum and coffee to sweet perfection. If you’re really wanting to impress, then dip the rim of an Irish coffee glass in lemon juice and then coat in sugar.
Add coffee to the cup and a shot of Kahlua plus a shot of dark rum. Add a teaspoon of sugar (or more if you prefer!) to sweeten and finally, finish with whipped cream. A garnish of chocolate flakes won’t go amiss with this one!
10. Amaretto Coffee
Amaretto, with it’s slightly bitter yet sweet nutty flavors, pairs perfectly with a strong black coffee.
Simply add a shot to your coffee and if you like, top with whipped cream and toasted almonds.
11. Chocolate Hazelnut Coffee
If sweetness is what you’re after then this cocktail is for you! To your cup of joe add a shot of hazelnut liqueur and a shot of chocolate liqueur.
Stir until evenly combined and top with whipped cream and a dusting of chocolate flakes or cocoa powder.
This mocha inspired warm cocktail is the perfect dessert substitute on a cold winter’s day.
12. Hot White Russian
This is a warming version of the classic White Russian cocktail, perfect to warm you on even the coldest winter days!
For this recipe, you’ll need extra heavy cream, not whipped to add to the coffee. For 2 parts coffee use 1 part heavy cream and 1 part Kahlua.
You’ll want to warm the cream and Kahlua first so heat it in a pan over a low heat and do not let it boil! Stir it gently and once it is warm add it to your mug alongside the coffee.
Next, add a shot (or double shot!) of vodka to the mix. Stir it gently and top it with your whipped cream. A sprinkle of cocoa powder or chocolate flakes rounds this one to perfection!