On this blog post, I would like to share a fantastic recipe on how to make a homemade Kahlua or coffee liqueur as some would call it. Making a homemade Kahlua is actually something I learned from some good friends of mine. It all started out when there was a tendency in the group of my closest friends that we should drink White Russians before hitting the bars on Friday evenings. White Russian is a great drink, which is made out of Kahlua, vodka and heavy cream/milk - a creamy, tasteful and very delicious drink.
In order to save some money on the real Kahlua my friends investigated how to make a homemade version. I would have to admit that the first time I heard about homemade Kahlua I was a little skeptic. However, tasting the homemade Kahlua I had to take back my initial skeptic thoughts. This recipe is very easy to follow and the taste is simply fantastic and close to the original version. You only have to be patient - it takes about three and a half hours to make one batch of this coffee liqueur. However, most of the time you can sit back and relax.
Coffee for Homemade Kahlua
There are several methods to make the coffee for your homemade Kahlua. The most important thing is that you make a good and strong quality coffee. The preferred method is using a French press, which is a fantastic way to brew a good quality and strong coffee. However, if you want to make it really easy for yourself, then you can use a regular coffee brewer or instant freeze dried coffee - like I have done in the recipe below on this page.
Recipe for White Russian
If you have landed on this page for the recipe for homemade Kahlua you might probably also be interested in a fantastic recipe for a homemade White Russian drink. Making a White Russian drink is super easy and only take 30 seconds. The ingredient list is very short, you only need Vodka, Heavy Cream (or alternatively regular milk), and Kahlua - this homemade Kahlua is especially perfect when you want to make this drink. You simply just mix the three ingredients together in nice glass.
If you are looking for other places where you can use this homemade Kahlua, I have made a small list just below:
- Traditional Danish chocolate sponge cake - add some Kahlua to add flavor.
- Chocolate Mousse, added in the whipped cream
- As an extra falvor in homemade hot cocoa
- Drizzle over a large array of sweet desserts, to add another depth of flavor
Recipe for Homemade Kahlua
As mentioned above, it is actually easy to make a homemade version of Kahlua and you only need five different ingredients; water, sugar, strong coffee, vanilla essence and vodka.
In a large saucepan, you start by adding the water and then the sugar in an even layer at the bottom. Turn on the heat on low-medium setting. Without stirring, slowly let the sugar melt and mix with the water. While the sugar and the water is mixing, make a strong pot of coffee. You get the best result if you are using a French press to brew your coffee. However, you can also use three tablespoons of instant freeze-dried coffee in a cup of hot water.
When the sugar is completely dissolved in the water, add the coffee and the vanilla sugar/essence to the mixture turn down the heat and let everything simmer for about 3 hours. We are looking to turn this coffee and sugar mixture into a delicious Kahlua syrup.
After the 3-hours simmer time, remove the now thicker coffee syrup from the stove and let it cool down. The temperature must be below 78 C (172 F), which is the evaporation temperature for alcohol. If you add the vodka before you reach the temperature you risk that some of the alcohol will evaporate. Of course, by adding the vodka will instantly lower the temperature. However, it is preferred to wait until the syrup has the correct temperature below 78 C (172 F).
When the mixture is cooled down, add the vodka and your homemade Kahlua is ready to be served. Pour the Kahlua onto some clean glass bottles, which also looks good for your next party.
Homemade Coffee Liqueur (Kahlúa)
- 1 l water (1/4 gal)
- 0.8 l sugar (1/5 gal)
- 1 cup hot water
- 3 tbsp instant freeze-dried coffee (Nescafe Instant Gold or similar)
- 1 tbsp vanilla powder
- 0,7 l vodka (24 fl. oz)
- In a large saucepan, add water and distribute the sugar in an even layer at the bottom.
- Let the water and sugar simmer gently. Do not make the mixture boil and do not stir in it.
- While the sugar is heating/mixing up in the water; make a strong cup of coffee. This is done by dissolving 3 tablespoon of freeze-dried coffee in one cup of hot water. Alternatively, you can brew some strong coffee using a French Press with 6 tablespoons of regular grinded coffee beans. A French press will give you the best result taste-wise.
- When the sugar is dissolved in the water, add the strong coffee and the vanilla powder (or similar vanilla essence).
- Now let the sugar, water and coffee mixture simmer at low heat for 3 hours. This step is done without a lid. We are looking to evaporation the water making a thicker and sweet coffee syrup.
- Remove the saucepan from the stove and let the coffee syrup cool down.
- When the temperature is 78 C (172 F) or below, add the vodka. If the temperature is greater, the alcohol will evaporate which is unwanted.
- When the Kahlua is cooled down, it is ready to be used or poured onto clean bottles. Keep your homemade Kahlua in your fridge.