Chances are you’ve seen at least one post about whipped coffee on your TikTok or Instagram feed in the past several months. The origins of this drink are up for debate. While we can trace the recent popularity of it through social media back to South Korea, whipped coffee is actually a popular concoction used in many cultures all over the world.

Read on for eight TikTok worthy recipes to give your next whipped coffee experience a glow up!

What Exactly is Whipped Coffee?

Whipped coffee is a drink made by whipping instant coffee and sugar, and topping it on your favorite milk. There are many variations you can make, which we’ll cover below—check out Whipped Strawberry Milk if you aren't a coffee fan. Ideally, you use an electric hand mixer to make it, although people have easily made it with a standing mixer, or even completely by hand.

This drink is best enjoyed slowly, allowing for the whipped coffee to slowly melt down into its creamy milk base.

Where Did it Come From?

The internet sensation has come to be known in the west as whipped coffee, quarantine coffee, or Dalgona coffee. Dalgona coffee’s recent surge in popularity begins in South Korea, with a reality TV show and a whole lot of people sheltering in place looking for new ways to spend and enjoy their time.

The name is derived from Dalgona, a Korean honeycomb toffee sweet, because of its taste and look, but the coffee drink doesn’t actually contain any of the Korean candy. South Korean actor Jung-II Woo is credited for the naming of this drink, after trying a whipped coffee on an episode of Stars’ Top Recipe at Fun-Staurant and commenting on how the coffee drink tastes like Dalgona.

The Controversy

All over the world, variations of whipped coffee have been enjoyed, under different names. In fact, the ‘Dalgona coffee’ that Jung-II Woo tried at Hon Kee Café was actually known as Chow Yun-Fat coffee. The cafe’s owner Leong Kam Hon attributed it to learning how to make whipped coffee from some ‘foreigners’ who he encountered years ago, noting that he didn’t remember where they were from exactly.

Here are a few of the variations I’ve found:

India: Indian Cappuccino Phenti hui coffee (the whipped coffee is on the bottom of the glass, and the milk is poured atop.

Greece: The frappé, the unofficial national drink of Greece (made with cold water instead of hot)

Libya: Cappuccino Libyan Style or Nescafé ( The drink is so common, it’s noted as being made in bigger batches and kept in the fridge to be ready in a jiffy.)

Cuba: Cafe Cubanos (made with whipping hot espresso with sugar)

As the hype rises around the story of how this drink gained popularity from South Korea to TikTok, Twitter threads on whipped coffee are calling out just how globalized whipped coffee has been for quite some time.

How Does it Work?

Whipped coffee cannot be made with regular coffee grounds, it has to be made with instant coffee. Instant coffee is made by two different methods: freeze-drying or liquid coffee is sprayed in a fine mist through very hot, very dry air, and as they cool, they land in a powdered form. Both of these methods produce a dry substance that can be brought to life with the addition of after. The flavor is ultra-concentrated, typically with the addition of flavor and aroma to mimic fresh coffee. The concentration of instant coffee makes it ideal for baking, cooking, and making whipped coffee!

How to Make Whipped Coffee

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • Milk of choice

Equipment- Choose your adventure

These are the three different methods recommended:

  • Electric Mixer: Takes only 2-3 minutes, and very little clean up!
  • Standing Mixer: Same as the electric mixer, this takes about 2-3 minutes, but more clean-up.
  • Hand whisk: Get a workout in! It will take about 3-5 minutes of straight whisking to get a nice texture.

Step-by-Step

  • Step 1: Place all the ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl to allow for lots of movement (and less kitchen clean up later!)
  • Step 2: Follow the above time tables, depending on what kind of equipment you choose. Like making a meringue, you’ll want to whip the base until you see peaks forming in the coffee.
  • Step 3: Pour your milk into a glass (hot or cold) and then spoon the coffee mixture on top.
  • Step 4: Post finished product on Instagram & enjoy slowly.

Sweetener Variations

If you’re not a fan of using granulated sugar, you can still enjoy this fluffy drink. You can use a 1:1 ratio of the following sugar substitutes:

  • Honey
  • Pure Maple Syrup
  • Stevia
  • Monk Fruit

Opt-out entirely: You can just mix the instant drink mix with hot water and get a good fluff, it just will not stay fluffy for very long.

Getting Creative—8 Awesome Whipped Coffee Variations

Whipped Pumpkin Spice Latte

  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • One-quarter teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice mix
  • 2-3 tablespoons pumpkin purée stirred into milk of choice

Whipped Masala Chai Latte from Misha Schwartz

  • 2 teaspoons instant masala chai
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • Milk of choice

Dirty Chai Latte from Taste of Home

  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee or espresso
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • Hot milk of choice with chai tea steeped for 5 minutes

Whipped Four Sigmatic Latte

  • 1 packet of instant mushroom coffee mix
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • Milk of choice

Whipped Strawberry Latte from Made by Mussi

  • 1 tablespoon strawberry Nesquik powder
  • 4 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • Milk of choice

Whipped Hot Chocolate from Made by Mussi

  • Half teaspoon of cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon of sugar
  • 3 teaspoons heavy whipping cream
  • Warm milk of choice

Whipped Matcha Latte from Jessica in the Kitchen

  • 2 tablespoons Aquafaba or egg white
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons matcha
  • Milk of choice

Decaf Whipped Coffee

  • 2 teaspoons instant decaf coffee
  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar (or sweetener of choice)
  • 2 teaspoons hot water
  • Milk of choice

The question stands: will this trend outlast quarantine? We sure hope so! For more beverage innovation ideas, check out How to Make Bubble Tea.

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