Coffee is the great equalizer. It’s a force that keeps us moving, and it has so many variations (think: hot, iced, or frozen) that there’s something out there for nearly everyone. It’s played a key role on television shows in defining and developing characters and their relationships — Seinfeld, Friends, and Gilmore Girls, to name a few. Coffee is the MVP of most mornings, and for some of us, the saving grace we need many afternoons.
I can clearly remember my first introduction to coffee. It was with my great aunt who loved to celebrate her coffee sessions. As a student, when I returned home from school, she would treat me to an afternoon coffee in a fine china cup. Of course, my coffee was filled with more cream and sugar than actual coffee, but the experience brought forth such fond memories. And from that point on, I was hooked — although I have since refined my coffee order so that the cream and sugar do not overpower the actual taste of coffee.
As many of us experiment with coffee, we come to find that we like certain brands or roasts better than others. We all visit coffee shops and try out the latest drink or the seasonal latte of the month. And as much as we enjoy a coffee shop visit, there is something so special about recreating a coffee drink in the comfort of your own home, where you can modify and tweak the ingredients to make it your own. Not to mention, when having guests over, playing barista will certainly impress your friends. Cozy up, grab a cup of your favorite, and enjoy these coffee recipes — ranging from a latte to a frappuccino, which can all be made right in your own kitchen.
Brown Sugar Latte
A latte is a coffee drink that combines espresso and steamed or frothed milk, with a ratio of ⅓ espresso and ⅔ steamed milk. When ordered at a coffee shop, a fancy espresso machine and milk frother will most likely make your drink, but those aren’t required to recreate a latte at home. This recipe from Shugary Sweets combines a strong brewed coffee with sweet nodes of light brown sugar, the perfect combination for a slow morning.
Before creating your latte, here are some tips for brewing the best cup:
Coffee: You can brew espresso for your latte, which is what is traditionally used, or you can brew your regular coffee beans at double the strength.
Milk: Any milk can work in this recipe, but traditionally lattes are made with whole milk.
Frothing milk: If you don’t have a milk frother at home, you can use a simple mason jar. First, heat your milk and then pour it in a mason jar with the brown sugar. Shake the jar until the milk becomes foamy.
Brown sugar: Light brown sugar is recommended for this recipe because it adds just a hint of sweet without being too strongly flavored.
Ingredients (for 2 servings):
- 2 cups of strong brewed coffee
- 2 tablespoons of caramel sauce
- 1 cup of milk (whole, skim, or non-dairy)
- 2 tablespoons of light brown sugar
- Brew the coffee.
- Heat your milk of choice, combined with the brown sugar, and then pour the mixture into a mason jar. Shake for a few minutes until the milk begins to froth.
- Pour the coffee into two cups, adding 1 tablespoon of caramel sauce to each cup until melted. Slowly add the frothy milk over the coffee.
Frozen coffee is a drink that marries the worlds of coffee and slushies — its sweetness is tamed by the cold brew used, making it a delicious drink of choice. As it’s gained popularity in recent years, its cost has also increased, making it difficult to justify an $8.00 drink. Fortunately, the frappuccino (or frappe, or whatever your favorite version of frozen coffee is called) is an incredibly easy drink to make at home, one you can customize without having to leave your kitchen. For this Food Network recipe, you will need 2 parts cold coffee, 1 part ice, and 1 part milk in order to make a slushy texture. For every 1 cup of coffee, you should add 3 tablespoons of sugar.
Before getting started, here are some tips to make your frappuccino a success:
Coffee Ice Cubes: Freeze leftover coffee in ice cube trays and use them for your frappuccino.
Ice your glass: Before making your frappuccino, put your glass in the freezer to cool down. Drizzle caramel or chocolate sauce inside the glass before pouring your frappuccino — a cold glass will keep the syrup in place.
Whipped cream: The topping of a frappuccino makes the drink. Try using chocolate or strawberry whipped cream to upgrade your coffee.
Flavor: You can choose from a variety of flavors when it comes to making your frappuccino, from caramel to chocolate, vanilla or even a scoop of ice cream, the possibilities are truly endless.
- 2 cups of small ice cubes
- 1 cup of brewed strong coffee, cooled
- ½ cup of milk
- 3 tablespoons of sugar
- Sweeteners such as sugar, syrups, or extracts
- Toppings such as whipped cream, caramel, chocolate chips, spices
- Brew coffee or espresso, and add in the sugar until it is dissolved. You can customize your frappuccino by adding in different flavors at this point. For example, adding ¼ teaspoons of vanilla extract will make the frappuccino vanilla flavored.
- Add your coffee ice cubes into the mixture.
- Blend your mixture until creamy, adding in any milk or syrups.
- Pour the frappuccino into a cold cup and top with whip cream.
Iced Caramel Coffee
Iced coffee has a cult following, and those who love to drink their coffee cold can attest to ordering an iced coffee even during the winter months. Although iced coffee seems like a simple enough recipe to recreate — literally just ice and coffee — this Berlys Kitchen recipe will upgrade your morning brew.
Here are some helpful iced coffee tips:
Good Coffee: When making your iced coffee, start with a quality coffee blend in a medium or dark roast.
Cold Brew: To make things easier, picking up your favorite cold brew from the grocery store is a simple way to start this recipe.
Sweetness Control: The best part about making an iced coffee at home is that you can control the sweetness level of your drink. Want it more sweet? Add more caramel. Less sweet? Decrease the amount of caramel you use.
- 8 ounces of iced coffee or cold brew
- 2 ounces of caramel creamer or vanilla creamer
- 1 ounce of caramel syrup
- Pour the brewed coffee over ice, adding the 2 ounces of creamer and 1 ounce of caramel syrup.
- Stir the mixture to combine the ingredients.
Protein Mocha Smoothie
Some morning people want more from their coffee than just a caffeine boost, and that’s where a protein coffee smoothie comes into play. A combination of blended coffee, protein, and fruit makes this recipe a great treat that is perfect for those with fast-paced mornings.
Here are some tips to elevate your protein smoothie:
Coffee Ice Cubes: Freeze leftover coffee in ice cube containers and use these coffee ice cubes for your smoothie.
Overripe Bananas: Sometimes bananas turn brown quickly after purchase, but don’t throw those bananas away! Peel and freeze them for your smoothie, not only do they keep your smoothie cold, but they blend very easily.
Protein Flavor: Protein comes in many different flavors, and it is easy to create your smoothie based on the protein flavor you have available. Peanut butter, chocolate, and vanilla all make for great bases with coffee.
- 1 cup of coffee
- Coffee ice cubes
- 1 banana (ripe or frozen)
- 1 cup of milk or non-dairy option like oat milk
- 2 scoops of protein powder (peanut butter works well in this smoothie)
- 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon of honey as sweetener (optional)
- In a blender, combine the coffee ice cubes, the cup of coffee, banana, 1 cup of milk, 2 scoops of protein, tablespoon of cocoa powder, and teaspoon of honey.
- Blend together well and pour into a smoothie-safe container. Enjoy!
Skip the long coffee lines and opt to make your own coffee creations at home. With so many delicious and simple coffee drinks to choose from, being able to fill your own cup feels surprisingly satisfying.