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Irish Coffee Recipe

5 from 2 votes

posted: 03/10/23

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy

Irish Coffee is perfect for St. Patrick’s Day or any day you need a little pick me up! Just four simple ingredients for a delicious cocktail recipe that warms you from the inside out.

Irish coffee in Irish coffee mugs with cream dripping down the sides

An Irish Coffee is the most delightful little treat. Adding sugar, coffee, cream, and Irish whiskey can just never be wrong. I’m going to give you my tips and tricks to make sure this recipe turns out perfect.

What is Irish Coffee?

Irish coffee is a cocktail that combines coffee, sugar, and whiskey and is topped with whipped cream, through which you drink the coffee mixture. It’s roots come from coffee houses in Vienna in the mid-19th century.

While the roots of this recipe don’t really seem to be Irish at all, rather from other parts of Europe, this delightful drink is easy to make at home and the perfect St. Patrick’s Day cocktail.

coffee being poured into an Irish coffee mug

Irish Coffee Ingredients

  • Coffee: The base of this drink is coffee, though the type varies from recipe to recipe. Some recipes call for espresso diluted in water. I find this recipe delightful made with my typical home brew.
  • Brown Sugar: Most recipes simply call for sugar. I find that brown sugar adds another layer of flavor that is perfect here.
  • Irish Whiskey: The quintessential ingredient here, is whiskey. While I think using Irish Whiskey makes it more of an Irish cocktail, you should use what you like.
  • Cream: In this recipe we are making some homemade whipped cream. Certainly if you are in a pinch, you can use the spray cream from the can.
holding brown sugar over a glass of coffee

How to Make Irish Coffee

This is a brief overview of how to make this fantastic St. Patrick’s Day cocktail. For the full recipe with all of the measurements, please see the recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  1. Brew the coffee. Nothing special here, just make your coffee as you always do.
  2. Make whipped cream. While the coffee is brewing whip up some whipped cream.
  3. Stir in sugar and whiskey. Add 1 tablespoon of brown sugar and 1 ounces of whiskey to each 8 ounce glass of coffee.
  4. Top with whipped cream. One of the best parts of drinking this cocktail is drinking it through the cream on top. While you can stir it in, I love it just floating on top.
whiskey being poured into a glass of coffee

How to Make Whipped Cream

Whipped cream is so easy to make! It is just a few simple steps. You could even kick this recipe up a notch and, as mentioned below, make Chocolate Whipped Cream to go on top.

  1. Freeze a metal bowl and whisk (the whisk attachment for a stand mixer or the beaters for a handheld mixer) for 15 minutes. This is an essential step, and they both must be metal.
  2. In the cold metal bowl, combine 1 tablespoon sugar and 1 cup heavy whipping cream.
  3. Beat the two together with the cold metal whisk until stiff peaks form.

Chocolate Whipped Cream

Chocolate Whipped Cream is only three ingredients! Easy to make and is the perfect addition to any dessert! You can even use it as frosting.
chocolate whipped cream recipe that has been piped into a small mason jar
holding whipped cream over a glass of coffee

Irish Coffee Mugs

You can drink this great cocktail in any mug, it might be a little more fun in these Irish coffee mugs. You can purchase the ones you see here. They are affordable, but very breakable. There are lots of other great options out there.


Irish Coffee Mugs

These are such a beautiful and perfect Irish Coffee Mug. I also love them for our mulled wine!
Product Image


This recipe is great as is, but you know me. I love to mix things up a little. Here are some great variations on this fun drink!

Baileys Irish Cream Coffee: Swap out your Irish Whiskey for some Baileys and cut both your brown sugar and your whipped cream in half. You can add more of both as you like, but start off with half.

Chocolate Irish Coffee: Instead of regular whipped cream, use my chocolate whipped cream to top this!

Salted Caramel Irish Coffee: Leave out the sugar and the cream, and instead use ice cream, caramel sauce, and a little kosher salt.

Irish Coffee Shots: Instead of an entire cup of coffee for sipping, these are shots of espresso with whiskey and cream!

Irish coffee in a tall glass mug

Other Great St. Patrick’s Day Recipes

If you make this coffee cocktail or any of my other recipes, please leave me a comment to let me know what you think!

Irish coffee in Irish coffee mugs with cream dripping down the sides
5 from 2 votes

Irish Coffee Recipe

Serves: 2 coffees
(tap # to scale)
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
This Irish Coffee Recipe is perfect for St. Patrick's Day or any day you need a little pick me up!  Just four simple ingredients for a delicious cocktail recipe that warms you from the inside out.  


  • 16 ounces fresh brewed coffee
  • 2 ounces Irish whiskey
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 large spoonfuls whipped cream see notes for how to make homemade whipped cream


  • Fill two mugs with coffee
  • Add a tablespoon of brown sugar to each mug.
  • Stir one ounce of whiskey into each mug.
  • Top with a large spoonful of homemade whipped cream. Enjoy!


To make homemade whipped cream, put a metal bowl in your freezer for 15 minutes. When the 15 minutes is up, add one tablespoon of sugar to the bowl. Then add one cup of heavy whipping cream. Whip with a handheld mixer on high until the cream thickens and forms peaks.
Author: Lisa Longley
Course: cocktails
Cuisine: Irish
Irish coffee in Irish coffee mugs with cream dripping down the sides

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Irish Coffee Recipe

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Hi! I'm Lisa Longley, and I am committed to giving you simple dinner ideas and recipes that are easy to make; recipes that will fill your home with joy. I am the owner and author of SimpleJoy.com and I'm so glad that you are here.

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  1. joyce says

    Thank you for the recipes…..so many recipes on line are available only if you join their web site. Making another commitment to unwanted major web site.

  2. Elaine says

    Hi Lisa,
    Love your recipes — I find them easy to follow and results are usually terrific. On the Irish Coffee, though — 1 TBLS of sugar in each glass — not a TSP? !

    • Lisa Longley says

      Hi Elaine! Yes! One tablespoon! This is meant to be a treat. You can certainly cut it back, but I recommend it as is.

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