Make Your Own Coffee Liqueur

By , January 17, 2010

If you enjoy coffee liqueur, like the commercially available Kahlua, Tia Marie, or similar, here’s a way to make your own cheaply at home.

I’ve been using this recipe on and off for years now. I just assumed everyone had one (who needed one, anyway) but recent requests from friends, and the joy of a particularly good batch over the Christmas holidays made me think I should include it here:

Homemade Coffee Liqueur

8 cups sugar
4 oz (weight) instant coffee (15 oz dry measure)
4 cups water
1 vanilla bean or 1/8th cup vanilla extract
1 quart vodka or brandy

In a 4 quart pot, boil water, add (in order!) coffee and sugar. Stir until well dissolved. Let cool. Add vanilla and vodka or brandy. Store in a one gallon jug if using a bean, or put into bottles as available. steep for at least 48 hours, but it’s much better if you allow it to sit for 30 days before using.


I like to add a dollop of this liqueur to a cup of cocoa. It amps up the richness quotient considerably!

This recipe came from A Grassroots Survival Company Cookbook of Memories Remedies & Recipes From the Great Depression 1929-198?, a really wonderful book I received at a shower my coworkers threw for me when Michelle and I were getting married. It’s out of print now, but can be found now and then–well worth looking for. It has lots of good, frugal recipes, home remedies, and more.

Enjoy in moderation! Not only is this brew powerful, it’s very rich.

2 Responses to “Make Your Own Coffee Liqueur”

  1. Beth (Little Sister) says:

    It’s that time of year again! Whipping up a new batch, a little later in the season than I would have liked, though as Mark said, the 30 days is really just a guideline….

  2. Mark Zeiger says:

    Ha! Well done, Beth! I’m still fighting the urge, because I know I’ll drink it too fast. I don’t need the calories right now. The comfort, however, is always welcome. I may yet give in.

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