Irish cream coffee is the Irish coffee for those who love their coffee with cream and sugar. A sweet, creamy, full bodied coffee drink with just enough of a boozy punch to start your holiday off right. While this iconically Irish drink is synonymous with St. Patrick’s Day, you’ll soon realize it’s also the perfect hot drink for a cold Christmas morning too. It may even become your new wintertime holiday favorite, as it is mine.
Here in the United States we love having a reason to celebrate with a tasty beverage and St. Patrick’s Day is no exception. While I’ve had my fair share of cheap green beer, believe it or not there are more sophisticated (and delicious) ways to honor our Irish heritage. Like this Irish cream coffee.
Similar to its sister Irish coffee, this coffee cocktail is ideal for warming you up from the inside out. It’s got a nice boozy kick that will warm your belly and just enough caffeine to wake you up.
Where it’s different is that it’s made for those of us who love sweet, creamy coffee drinks. If that’s you, read on and get ready to level up your coffee cocktail game.
How to make Irish cream coffee
Making Irish cream coffee is as simple as pouring the right amount of coffee, Irish whiskey, and Irish cream into mug and topping it with lightly whipped cream. Sure, you can use a fancy Irish coffee glass like mine, but it’s totally not necessary, especially when St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Tuesday.
Making lightly whipped cream
The only part that is a little tricky is getting the whipped cream just right. When I say “lightly whipped cream” I mean cream that is just thickened but not yet firm enough to form peaks. The ideas is to make a whipped cream that is soft enough to drink along with your beverage, instead of just floating on top, making it creamier with every sip.
Getting to this stage with homemade whipped cream is quicker and easier than making actual whipped cream. In fact, for the photos I whipped the cream by hand with a whisk in under five minutes. It took less time than assembling then cleaning my mixer. Looking for an easier way? Check out my friend Caroline’s post about making whipped cream with a milk frother. Just don’t over whip it!
The difference between Irish Cream Coffee and Irish Coffee
Irish cream coffee and Irish coffee are two very similar coffee cocktails, which is why I refer to them as sister recipes. The difference between them comes down to two ingredients: the sugar and the Irish cream.
In an Irish coffee the only alcohol you use is Irish whiskey, and one or two teaspoons of brown sugar is recommended to help cut the bitterness of the coffee. An Irish cream coffee, on the other hand, doesn’t need the added sugar because it swaps half of the whiskey for Irish cream, which is already sweet on its own.
Like yours extra sweet? Go ahead and add an extra teaspoon or two of sugar. Like yours extra creamy? Try swapping all the whiskey for all Irish cream. If you somehow landed here and don’t like cream in your coffee at all, stick to a classic Irish coffee by using all whiskey and as much brown sugar as you like.
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Irish Cream Coffee Recipe
If you are looking to step up your cocktail game this St. Patrick’s Day this Irish cream coffee is a great place to start. It’s a lightly sweetened, creamy coffee drink with just the right kick of Irish whiskey and Irish cream.
While you are here, make sure to go check out my cheddar sausage Guinness beer bread. It’s a mouthful to say, but tastes great for breakfast with an Irish cream coffee. Need a St. Patrick’s Day dinner recipe too? I’ve got you covered with Bangers and mash with Guinness gravy. For more cocktails, see all of my drinks recipes.
Irish Cream Coffee
- 6 ounces hot coffee
- 1 ounce Irish cream
- 1 ounce Irish whiskey
- 1/2 ounce heavy cream (lightly whipped)
- Brew coffee. Your choice of pour over, drip coffee, or French press in either regular or decaf.
- Lightly whip the cream so that it foams up but doesn’t form peaks.*
- In a 9 ounce or larger coffee mug or Irish coffee glass combine coffee, whiskey, and Irish cream. Layer whipped cream on top and enjoy.
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Nutrition information is automatically calculated and is for general information purposes only. For the most accurate information, calculate using your select brands and exact measurements.
For the step by step version of this recipe, check out the How to Make Irish Cream Coffee Story.