I have a degree in ancient history and a passion for reading, cooking, DIY projects, tea, science fiction, and a myriad of other subjects.
Coffee-flavored vodka is a delicious and versatile treat, and making your own is easy and inexpensive.
There's no need to use high-quality ingredients for this recipe. In my experience, it turns out just as good with cheap coffee and vodka. If you use an expensive vodka or coffee, the more subtle flavors and nuances are drown out in this potent mixture anyway.
- 1 cheap bottle of vodka
- 1 cheap package of ground coffee
- 1 empty glass bottle or jar with lid or stopper
- 1 funnel
- Save an old wine or liquor bottle or jam jar along with its cork or lid. Wash the bottle or jar completely so that it's ready to use. I use a baby bottle brush to make sure my bottles are totally clean on the inside for reuse.
- Place your funnel into the neck of the bottle and pour in the ground coffee. Do not use brewed coffee grounds. You'll want fresh, dry ones. There's no exact measurement for how much ground coffee to add because it depends on the size of your bottle. I typically fill my bottle about 1/3 full of ground coffee.
- Top off the bottle or jar with vodka. I fill my bottle up to the neck to leave a little room to shake the mixture up.
- Replace the bottle's stopper or lid and make sure it's on tightly.
- Shake the bottle vigorously until the ground coffee is fully mixed in.
- Place the coffee/vodka mixture in the fridge for a week.
- Shake the bottle every day to make sure the ground coffee doesn't clump together at the bottom.
- After a week has passed, remove the bottle from the fridge. For this part of the process, you will need a French press.
- Shake the bottle one last time to loosen the coffee and dump the bottle's entire contents into your French press.*
- Use the French press to separate the grounds and set your coffee-infused vodka aside momentarily.
- Rinse your bottle and cork to remove any excess coffee grounds.
- Once the bottle is clean, pour the coffee-flavored vodka from the French press back into the bottle. Most French presses are easy to pour with, but if you're worried about making a mess, you can always use the funnel again.
- Drink and enjoy.
*NOTE: If your bottle's capacity is greater than that of your French press, pour in as much of the mixture as the French press will hold, remove the grounds, and pour the grounds-free infused vodka into a mixing bowl or other large container. Then rinse out the French press and use it to remove the grounds from the rest of the vodka.
Uses for Coffee-Flavored Vodka
Here are some of my favorite ways to use coffee-infused vodka.
- use it to replace plain vodka in your White Russian cocktail
- use it to make chocolate pudding shots
- pour a shot of it into your mug of hot chocolate
- use it to replace plain vodka in your Mudslide cocktail
Don't Have a French Press?
A nice French press can be very expensive and if you're not normally a coffee drinker, you probably don't have one just laying around. Don't run out and buy one! Here's a cheap hack that works just as well:
Place a coffee filter inside a wire colander and pour the vodka/ground coffee mixture through it. Make sure you hold your homemade straining device over a mixing bowl that is large enough for all the liquid from your bottle, and pour slowly so you don't overflow the filter and have to start all over. Voilà!
How to Make Coffee Liqueur
This coffee-flavored vodka recipe can easily be modified to make coffee liqueur instead. Simply follow the previous instructions with this small modification:
- Fill your bottle about 1/3 full of coffee grounds as you would normally, and then fill it only an additional 1/3 full of vodka. Your bottle should only be a total of about 2/3 full when you've finished this step.
- Fill the final 1/3 of the bottle with simple syrup, then continue following the previous instructions exactly as written.
Uses for Coffee Liqueur
Here are some of my favorite uses for coffee liqueur:
- drink with cola
- drink with cream soda
- add to a cafe latte
- add a little to your favorite cake recipe
Here are a couple creative ways you can modify the coffee vodka and coffee liqueur recipes:
- use flavored coffee in either recipe
- use flavored Torani syrup instead of simple syrup to make the liqueur-- butterscotch, caramel, and macadamia flavors are my favorite
- include 1 teaspoon of vanilla or almond extract in either recipe for a bit of extra flavor
Katie on January 18, 2020:
LOVE LOVE LOVE this in my Tiramisu!
rubadubdub on August 13, 2017:
I've got an even easier method. Use instant coffee and then there's no need for filtering. And if doing the "Kahlua" you can just use sugar instead of simple syrup. Adding a couple vanilla beans to the mix makes a great finishing touch.
Toni from NY on October 02, 2016:
Crying tears of joy. Where have you been all my life ???
John Fisher from Easton, Pennsylvania on December 18, 2013:
@Christy Kirwan--Never tried this with ground coffee yet. I must give it a try. I usually use whole coffee beans to make coffee infusions.
Christy Kirwan (author) from San Francisco on February 13, 2013:
Hi Kathryn, I'm glad you enjoyed the Hub! I think liqueur cakes are a German thing-- I have a German friend whose mother bakes one every Christmas. Hers is an almond liqueur cake and it is excellent. Very moist and rich.
Kathryn from Windsor, Connecticut on February 13, 2013:
That is something I have never thought of doing! I LOVE coffee, and even though vodka alone is not my favorite, I like mixed drinks.
I like the variations you added (I like flexibility in recipes), and I liked your list of uses. I would not have thought to put them in cream soda, latte or cake. Very interesting.
Christy Kirwan (author) from San Francisco on February 05, 2013:
Thanks, tillsontitan! It also makes a great gift if you save smaller bottles and jars to give it away in. :)
Christy Kirwan (author) from San Francisco on February 05, 2013:
You totally should, kohuether! It's SUPER easy and the end result is way cheaper than Kahlua. Your ice cream idea sounds absolutely delicious. I'll have to try that next time I pick up some ice cream.
Mary Craig from New York on February 05, 2013:
Unfortunately I'm not a coffee drinker and seldom drink alcohol, however, I have a lot of company and they love to drink. How impressed would they be if I said I made my own Coffee Vodka? Your directions are easy to follow and you seem to have covered everything. Great idea for a hub.
Voted up, useful, and interesting.
Katherine Olga Tsoukalas from New Hampshire on February 05, 2013:
Oh wow, this looks really easy! I am totally doing this. I LOVE coffee infused vodka. Right now I am thinking about mixing a small bit of the finished product with some simple syrup and keeping it in the fridge to pour over ice cream!