3-Ingredient Whipped Iced Coffee: the Easy Recipe for a Refreshing and Creamy Summer Drink!

Total time: 10 min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 2-4
By Cookist

Craving a cool, refreshing pick-me-up that's anything but basic? Look no further than Whipped Iced Coffee! This isn't your average cup of joe. We're talking about a tasty beverage that's more like a dessert drink (though it can definitely be enjoyed any time of day). It's perfect for those hot summer afternoons when you need a quick energy boost without the heaviness. With just 3 ingredients and a little elbow grease (or the help of an electric mixer), you can whip up this café-worthy treat in minutes. The secret lies in creating a light and fluffy coffee foam using instant coffee, sugar, and water. So ditch the store-bought sugary drinks and impress your friends and family with this easy and oh-so-satisfying homemade whipped iced coffee!

What is Whipped Iced Coffee?

Whipped iced coffee, also known as Dalgona coffee, is a tasty beverage that's taken the internet by storm. It's a cold and creamy coffee drink made with just three ingredients: instant coffee, sugar, and water (in the form of ice and liquid). While the exact origin is debated, the drink gained immense popularity in South Korea during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Social media was flooded with videos of people whipping up the frothy coffee at home, using just a whisk and some elbow grease.

However, the concept of whipped coffee has roots that date further back. The drink itself is credited to Leong Kam Hon, a former shipwright from Macau. Legend has it that he created the drink in 1997 for a tourist couple who requested a special coffee. It wasn't until 2004, when a famous actor visited his cafe, that the drink gained some local fame. The name "Dalgona" comes from a Korean word for a sweet toffee candy, referencing the drink's thick and slightly caramelized flavor profile.

The key to achieving the perfect froth is whipping the coffee, sugar, and water for an extended period. This incorporates air bubbles, creating a light and airy texture. While traditionally made by hand, many people now use a blender to speed up the process. Whipped iced coffee can be enjoyed plain or customized with different flavors like vanilla, cocoa powder, or even a drizzle of caramel.


  • Use high-quality instant coffee for the best flavor. Opt for a brand known for its strong aroma and taste. Freshness is key – avoid coffee that's been sitting in your pantry for months.
  • Sugar plays a crucial role in achieving the desired froth. Granulated sugar works best, but if you prefer a less sweet coffee, you can use a little less or experiment with sugar alternatives like brown sugar or coconut sugar.
  • Whisk or beat the coffee, sugar, and water for several minutes, until the mixture becomes light and fluffy, almost like whipped cream. This incorporates air bubbles and creates the signature texture.
  • Use hot water (not boiling) to dissolve the coffee and sugar easily. However, for the best results, chill your glass with ice cubes before pouring in the milk. This keeps your drink colder for longer.
  • While whole milk creates the creamiest texture, you can use any type of milk you prefer, including dairy-free alternatives like almond or oat milk.
  • Don't be afraid to customize your coffee. Add a splash of vanilla extract, cocoa powder, or a drizzle of caramel for a flavored twist. You can even top your drink with whipped cream or a sprinkle of cinnamon for an extra decadent treat.
  • The whipped coffee mixture can be stored in the fridge for up to a day. Simply re-whip it before pouring over chilled milk.

Can I Use Regular Ground Coffee Instead Of Instant Coffee?

No, unfortunately, regular ground coffee won't work for this recipe. Instant coffee dissolves easily in water, creating a smooth and frothy consistency that's essential for whipped iced coffee. Regular ground coffee needs to be brewed first, which wouldn't achieve the desired texture.

How Long Does It Take To Whip The Coffee Mixture?

It can take several minutes (3-5 minutes) of whisking or electric mixing to achieve the perfect frothy texture. The mixture should become light and fluffy, almost like whipped cream.

My Coffee Mixture Isn't Frothing Up. What Am I Doing Wrong?

There could be a few reasons.

  • Not enough whipping, so make sure you whisk or beat the coffee, sugar, and water for a sufficient amount of time.
  • Sugar matters because it helps to trap air bubbles, so using too little sugar can hinder frothing.
  • Using old or stale instant coffee can affect the frothing ability.

What Are Some Ways To Customize My Whipped Iced Coffee?

Add a pump of your favorite flavored syrup like vanilla, caramel, or hazelnut. A sprinkle of cinnamon, nutmeg, or even a pinch of chili powder can add a unique twist. For an extra decadent treat, use heavy cream or whipped cream instead of milk. Blend in some frozen fruit like strawberries, bananas, or mangoes for a fruity and refreshing twist.

More Coffee Based Desserts You'll Love

Classic Dalgona Coffee

Cold Brew Coffee

Coffee Ice Cream

Coffee Flavored Whipped Cream

Coffee Mousse

3-Ingredient Coffee Ganache

How to Store Whipped Iced Coffee

Store any leftovers in the refrigerator. They will last for up to a day.


Instant Coffee
2 tablespoons
Cold Water

How To Make Whipped Ice Coffee

Start by adding the ice, coffee, sugar, and half of the water to your blender. This initial blend will break down the ice and begin to incorporate air bubbles.

Once the initial blend is complete, slowly add the remaining water while the blender is running.

Keep an eye on the consistency—you want it nice and frothy, not soupy.

When the mixture reaches a thick and frothy consistency, similar to whipped cream, you know it's ready! Pour the coffee into a chilled glass. Top it off with some decorative chocolate drops and a dusting of cocoa powder.

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