Looking for a new way to start your morning with a kick? Forget your tired, old and boring cup of joe. Thai coffee is your new favorite breakfast beverage.
What is Thai Coffee?
Thai iced coffee is a sweetened, creamy iced coffee that comes with a strong kick of caffeine and a burst of flavor. Recipes really differ, but the general consensus is that you combine strong coffee with some sort of sweet dairy product, along with some cardamom or similar spices, for a flavor profile you won’t find anywhere else.
There’s no need to travel to Bangkok to experience Thai coffee for yourself, though. You can make it at home with staple pantry ingredients and supplies you likely already have in your cupboards. (And, for the upcoming summer, it’s the perfect thing to get your caffeine and/or coffee fix without suffering further in the stifling heat.)
How is Thai Coffee Different from Vietnamese Coffee?
If you’re already familiar with Vietnamese coffee, though, you might be wondering what the difference is.
Traditionally, Vietnamese iced coffee is made one way — with coffee beans brewed via drip and then mixed with condensed milk.
Thai iced coffee, however, incorporates other ingredients, and the added dairy might differ from recipe to recipe. Likewise, you don’t have to use any sort of drip apparatus to make Thai iced coffee. Whatever you use to brew your daily pot is fine.
1. Simple Starter Thai Iced Coffee
Ready to make your own Thai iced coffee?
If you don’t want to make a trip out to the grocery store for any extra ingredients and you just want to make the simplest version of Thai iced coffee possible, The Spruce Eats offers some easy enough Thai coffee recipesPour two large cups of hot coffee or strong instant coffee into a glass pitcher.
Add four to six tablespoons of sweetened condensed milk to taste. Stir until it’s dissolved and then add some ice and refrigerate until chilled.
When you serve your Thai iced coffee, put a few ice cubes in each glass, pour the chilled mixture over the ice and then top it off with a few spoonfuls of either evaporated milk or heavy cream.
2. Alcoholic Thai Iced Coffee
Of course, you can always give your Thai iced coffee an even further kick, with Thai coffee recipes from The Cookie Rookie. You’ll want to still use that strong coffee, but you’ll add in some ground cardamom to the grounds before brewing the coffee.
After your four cups of coffee are done, you’ll pour it all into your large glass pitcher along with three ounces of Amaretto, and stir. To serve, pour over crushed ice and then top the coffee with a tablespoon of sweetened condensed milk.
3. Lower Calorie Thai Iced Coffee
If you don’t want all those calories that come with the sweetened condensed milk, you can always make a lower calorie Thai iced coffee. Food blog Olivia’s Cuisine will show you how.
All you need is four and a half cups of strong black coffee, four to eight packets of your favorite zero-calorie sweetener, three cardamom pods, vanilla extra, ground cinnamon and half and half.
Just brew the coffee (separating a half cup of the coffee and freezing in an ice tray) and then add your smashed cardamom pods, cinnamon, vanilla and sweetener. Cool for at least three hours and then pour over your coffee ice cubes along with some half and half.
(You can also make this coffee ice cube trick work for your regular iced coffee or cold brew if you don’t want to water down your drink with traditional ice cubes.)
4. Vegan Thai Iced Coffee
If you follow a vegan diet and want to avoid the dairy found in traditional Thai iced coffee, it’s not as difficult as you might think to do so. A recipe for vegan, overnight Thai iced coffee makes things easy.
Just brew four tablespoons of dark espresso in a french press using 12 to 14 ounces of hot water. While the coffee is brewing, mix almond or cashew milk (vegan milk alternatives with vanilla added are a good choice) with a variety of spices — cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg — as well as raw sugar, coconut cream and vanilla or almond extract.
Pour your coffee atop the milk mixture, stir and let it sit overnight in the fridge. All the flavors meld together beautifully and the mixture is ready for breakfast the next morning.
You can serve with ice and maybe even try a vegan dulce de leche sauce on top.
5. Paleo Thai Iced Coffee
There are additionally some paleo Thai coffee recipes out there. There’s no need to break your diet in order to try this delicious coffee treat.
This paleo Thai iced coffee recipe from Paleo Hacks mixes a can of coconut milk, a few tablespoons of maple syrup, cardamom and almond extract, separate the mixture into four mason jars of ice and then tops it all with strongly brewed coffee.
It’s creamy, it’s cold, it’s delicious — and it’s 100 percent paleo.
6. Frozen Thai Coffee
Want to make things even colder? You can always try this recipe for frozen Thai iced coffee. All you need to do is stir two cups of strong hot coffee, a can of sweetened condensed milk, a cup of whole milk and a teaspoon of vanilla in a large bowl overnight. Then, pour the mixture into a shallow baking pan and freeze it until it’s solid.
Scoop it all into serving glasses when you’re done.
But that’s not where the yumminess ends. The recipe also includes instructions for making a decadent whipped cream and toasted coconut concoction to dollop atop each glass of this frozen Thai coffee.
Is Thai Coffee Worth All the Hype?
Absolutely! Thai iced coffee is a delicious, cold caffeinated beverage that any coffee lover will enjoy, whether you’re staunchly in favor of bitter coffee being better, or you need a bit of sweetness in your daily cup. Thai iced coffee blends the two flavor profiles effortlessly for a one-of-a-kind drink.
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