Whipped Coffee Recipe: A Fresh Take On A Classic
You've probably seen whipped coffee all over social media in the past few years. The Dalgona coffee trend took off thanks to its highly Instagrammable appearance. Plus, it's convenient, easy to make, and surprisingly good. But let’s be honest, the basic recipe is kind of getting boring.
We decided to mix it up a little. Keep reading for Home Grounds' original take on the Dalgona whipped coffee phenomenon: the Dalgona Delight.
What You Need
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons instant coffee, light or dark roast
- 2 tablespoons boiling water
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, granulated sugar, or raw sugar
- 1 cup whole milk
- Whipped cream, optional
- Chocolate curls, optional
- Hand whisk or hand mixer
At a Glance
20 fluid ounces
How Do You Make Whipped Coffee?
This recipe, which is a twist on our other Dalgona coffee variations, is something we invented in the middle of the week while waiting for the weekend. After perusing through our exhaustive list of coffee drinks, we realized that, while we had a Greek frappe coffee on the list, we didn't have this delightful version of TikTok's favorite coffee hack.
What Is Whipped Coffee?
Whipped coffee — also called beaten coffee, Dalgona coffee, or Korean coffee — is made with instant coffee, granulated sugar, and hot water. To make whipped coffee, you need to whip the instant coffee, sugar, and hot water vigorously to create a dense froth. It is then added to hot milk or a non-dairy milk alternative of your choice and, often, generous dollops of whipped cream. It can also be added to milk and ice for an iced coffee variation.
Unlike many all-too-frivolous social media food-and-beverage trends, whipped coffee became all the rage out of necessity. In 2020, many of us were stuck in our homes, bored to tears, scrolling through social media, and most importantly, devoid of human contact. Required to keep six feet apart from other humans at all times, we needed something to fill the void in our cafe-loving, latte-obsessed lives. Dalgona coffee emerged to fill that void and quickly became a pop culture phenomenon.
Where Did Dalgona Whipped Coffee Come From?
Dalgona whipped coffee didn't actually originate as a TikTok trend, contrary to popular belief (1). As a movie star ordered his coffee in Macau on the show Stars' Top Recipe at Fun-Staurant, a panelist commented that his coffee order looked a lot like “dalgona.”
Dalgona, or honeycomb toffee, is a type of candy popular in South Korea candy made with sugar and baking soda (2). However, unlike much of the candy we're used to buying, dalgona is sweet, caramel-like, brittle, and smoky. It does, in fact, look very similar to Dalgona coffee.
Boozy Dalgona Whipped Coffee
Adding alcohol is always a fun way to make a coffee drink a bit more festive, but we know it’s not to everyone’s taste – especially with your morning coffee. To make whipped coffee with a boozy twist, we've concluded that two coffee-based liqueurs perfectly complement these ingredients: Kahlua and Tempus Fugit Creme de Moka.
Both of these coffee liqueurs have slightly different flavor profiles. The coffee-based liqueur you choose will, ultimately, depend on the flavor profile you're looking to create. Let's start with the classic Kahlua.
A classic at bars throughout the world, Kahlua was first brewed in 1936. It has a thick, syrupy mouthfeel with notes of sweet butter, roasted chestnut, and black coffee (3). Because it's so rich and heavy, it's best complemented by an instant coffee that's more akin to a light roast.
Tempus Fugit Spirits' Creme de Moka
On the other hand, if you want to start out with a lighter, fruitier coffee-based liqueur, try Tempus Fugit Spirits' Creme de Moka (4). Sweetened with cane sugar and made with Ethiopian coffee beans, this liqueur is bittersweet, with notes of vanilla and spice. Typical of Ethiopian coffees, which have a generally fruitier cup profile, this has a much lighter mouthfeel and aroma than Kahlua.
A Note About Instant Coffee
Once upon a time, a specialty coffee lover wouldn’t be caught dead drinking instant coffee. We’d be hesitant to post a recipe on this site that requires it. But times have changed. An increasing number of specialty coffee companies are offering premium instant coffee and instant espresso; it’s no longer the stale and bitter-tasting brew you remember.
This Dalgona coffee has enough extra ingredients that you can get away with the cheaper old-school instant stuff. But if you don’t have to, don’t. We’ve done the taste tests and can confirm that a better coffee yields a better drink, even in this frothy example. If you can afford it, splurge for the good stuff, like the picks in our reviews of the best instant coffee.
Whipped Coffee Recipe Step-by-Step: The Dalgona Delight
Making whipped coffee is easier than you think. We’ve broken it down into four easy steps – and one of them is just the garnish. Keep reading to learn how to turn your whipped coffee ingredients into a delicious, fluffy drink.
1. Make the Coffee Mixture
In a small bowl, heat two tablespoons of water in a microwave until it boils. Or use a kettle to boil water and add two tablespoons to a bowl. Then, add two tablespoons of instant coffee, one-quarter teaspoon of vanilla extract, two tablespoons of brown sugar, and one teaspoon of cocoa powder. As an alternative to cocoa powder, you can substitute two teaspoons of melted chocolate chips or two teaspoons of chocolate syrup.
Using a hand whisk, whisk the mixture vigorously. It will grow in volume as enough air is incorporated to produce a dense foam.
Pro Tip: If you want to spare yourself an arm workout, a handheld milk frother makes an excellent whisk alternative. An electric mixer, hand mixer, or hand blender with a whisk attachment can also be used, but you may need to make a big batch of whipped coffee to have enough liquid volume.
2. Heat the Milk
Using either the microwave or a saucepan on the stove, heat one cup of whole milk until it reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit. Warm milk has a sweeter flavor and will produce a creamier Dalgona whipped coffee.
If you want to make a boozy whipped instant coffee drink, add a shot of coffee liqueur to the milk after heating.
Pro Tip: Keep a close eye on your milk as it's heating up. Unfortunately, once it overheats and scalds, you'll have to start the process over again with fresh milk.
3. Top the Milk With the Whipped Coffee
Pour the warmed milk into a 20-ounce mug, then gently spoon the dalgona coffee mixture over the top to create a beautifully layered drink.
Pro tip: You can also serve your Dalgona coffee as an iced coffee. Rather than heating the milk, pour cold milk into a chilled tall glass with a few ice cubes or cold brew ice cubes. Then add the whipped coffee.
4. Garnish, Serve, and Enjoy
The right garnish can make or break a drink. You can be as creative as you want, but choose toppings that won’t weigh down the whipped coffee. We love a dollop of whipped cream, a drizzle of chocolate syrup, and a scattering of chocolate shavings. A light dusting of cinnamon is another delicious touch.
This Dalgona Delight is an elevated take on the whipped coffee TikTok trend, especially if you opt to serve it at cocktail hour with a dash of liqueur. Whether you choose a boozy variation or not, high-quality ingredients are the key to this simple drink. Splurge on good instant coffee and dairy, and you will be well rewarded.
Do you have any original takes on the Dalgona whipped coffee trend? Share them with us by dropping us a comment below, posting to our Home Grounds Facebook group, or by tagging and following us on Instagram.
Yes, you can use non-dairy alternatives, like almond milk or oat milk. Because the milk does not need to be frothed for this drink, you don’t have to worry about the texture of your milk substitute. However, different kinds of milk will affect flavor. We suggest oat milk for a neutral flavor or unsweetened chocolate almond milk for a bonus hit of chocolate.
Yes, you can use sugar substitutes, but they need to have the same granulated texture of typical sugar in order to create the foam when whipped with instant coffee and hot water. Good options include Stevia and Splenda.
Yes, you can make a decaf whipped coffee recipe if you are sensitive to caffeine or want to enjoy this drink in the evening. Just replace the instant coffee in the recipe with decaf instant coffee. Beware that the chocolate will still contribute some caffeine.
There are 198 calories in this whipped coffee if you make the basic variation of the recipe. Whipped coffee calories mostly come from the whole milk, which has 4.5 g of saturated fat, so substituting skim milk or non-dairy milk can lower the calories significantly. Adding a shot of liqueur will nearly double the calories.
- Hines, N. (2020, April 23). The True Origin of the Internet-Famous Dalgona Coffee. Matador Network; Matador Network. https://matadornetwork.com/read/dalgona-coffee-origin/
- Sue. (2021, October 15). Dalgona Candy (Korean Honeycomb Toffee). My Korean Kitchen. https://mykoreankitchen.com/dalgona-candy-honeycomb-toffee/
- Kahlua. (2020). Coffee Liqueur. Kahlúa. https://www.kahlua.com/en/products/original-coffee-liqueur/
- The Whiskey Exchange. (2021). Tempus Fugit Crème de Moka. https://www.thewhiskyexchange.com/p/68142/tempus-fugit-creme-de-moka