Creamy Brown Sugar Amaretto Coffee

Meet Italy’s take on the Irish coffee. Dark roast coffee is spiked with amaretto and kissed with a creamy brown sugar topping and a sugar rimmed glass. Cozy up with a cup of this Italian coffee drink after a great meal and get ready to make it on repeat.

finished glass of amaretto coffee with demerara sugar topping.
Amaretto coffee is the best finish to a great meal.

I love the way coffee is served in Italy. If you want milk (latte) with your coffee (Americano as it’s known), it comes steamed or whipped in a big carafe. Heaven, as far as I’m concerned. And if you want to make it a little boozy you have a few choices, one of which is the espresso martini.

Another? This Italian amaretto coffee which is the perfect drink for lingering with guests around the table or around a crackling fire.

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The allure of amaretto

Rich in color and taste, amaretto is a romantic liqueur. But there is a touch of bitterness which makes it pair beautifully with lemon (don’t miss my classic Italian amaretto sour – I learned to make it from a bartender while in Italy).

Amaretto is a cordial. Served after dinner, Italians sip it neat (straight, no ice). Pairing it with espresso or coffee essentially combines the post-meal espresso or cappuccino and the cordial into one beverage.

I have no trouble with this…less cups and glasses to wash, right?

Another great coffee dessert…this creamy affogato recipe. Such a showstopper!

What’s different about this amaretto coffee recipe?

frother milk being poured into amaretto coffee.
  1. Whipping non-dairy creamer. It is a technique I use every day when I drink my coffee. I use the whipping attachment in my Aeroccino but you can use any milk frother that you like.
  2. Demerara sugar. On the rim, sprinkled on the frothed milk for color/texture and at the finish. It lines the bottom of the glass because the last sweet drink at the bottom of a cup of coffee is the best.

More ingredient highlights

Ingredients for amaretto coffee with demerara sugar, oat milk creamer and coffee.

The ingredient list for this Italian coffee with amaretto is fairly straightforward. Here are the highlights:

  • Amaretto. I used DiSaronno Amaretto which to many Italians is one and the same. If you say “DiSaronno”, you’ll be brought an amaretto. The recipe has been around since the 1500’s!
  • Strong coffee/espresso. The basis for any good coffee drink is well…good coffee. I am a Nespresso drinker but if I’m brewing a pot, I fresh grind Italian dark roast coffee like Lavazza or Illy.
  • Whipped brown sugar creamer. I use the Brown Sugar Non-dairy Oat Creamer currently available at Trader Joe’s. I probably ought to develop a recipe for it in case it goes away!
  • Simple syrup. Just a bit for a little sweetness. Equal parts sugar and water.

Amaretto coffee step-by-step

milk frother with frothed milk for coffee.
1. Add oat milk creamer to frother and froth. Use the “whipping” attachment if using a frother similar to mine.
demerara sugar in bottom of glass with coffee.
2. Sprinkle a little demerara sugar in the bottom of the glass. Pour in some simple syrup.
amaretto and syrup in glass.
3. Pour in the amaretto to the bottom of the glass.
coffee poured in glass for amaretto coffee.
4. Top with coffee, pouring straight down the center of the glass.
Frothed milk topped amaretto coffee sprinkled with sugar.
5. Carefully spoon or pour in frothed milk and top with a sprinkling of demerara sugar. Serve right away!

If you love amaretto desserts…

I’ve got a few you’ll want to bookmark for later. This loaf pan almond cookie ice cream cake (filled with cookie butter) is so pretty when cut and perfect for a smaller group! And this amaretto semifreddo sounds super fancy but is made with only 3 ingredients and can be made days ahead.

Creamer alternatives

homemade vanilla milk frothed in frother
Frothed 2% milk with a little flavored syrup.
spoon of frothed milk close up with vanilla syrup nearby.
This is the finished texture you’re looking for.

If you can’t find the brown sugar creamer, you can use any flavor you like that would pair well with amaretto. Some suggestions:

Make ahead? While the milk frothing can be done ahead in an Aeroccino or similar frother, it really isn’t worth it as the froth will break down.

How to rim a glass with sugar

An optional but very festive step is to serve the Italian coffee with a sugar rim. Here’s how to do it:

sugar rimming station for glasses for coffee.
1. Set up a station with two shallow bowls with wide rims. Pour some water (you could also use simple syrup) in one and demerara sugar in the other.
glass being dipped in sugar for rim
2. Dip the glass straight down into the bowl. Roll around the edges to fill in any blank spots.
hand holding sugar rimmed glass for amaretto coffee.
3. The finished rim ready for a coffee drink…so pretty, right?

Made this recipe?

I’d love it if you’d share your review and leave a star rating and comment!


finished glass of amaretto coffee with demerara sugar topping.
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Creamy Brown Sugar Amaretto Coffee

Meet Italy's take on the Irish coffee. Dark roast coffee is spiked with amaretto and kissed with a creamy brown sugar topping and a sugar rimmed glass. Cozy up with a cup of this Italian coffee drink after a great meal and get ready to make it on repeat.
Prep Time:5 minutes
Total Time:5 minutes
Servings 1

Ingredients
 

  • demerara sugar, for the top and bottom vwg
  • 7 oz brewed, dark roast coffee or 1 (.75 oz) shot of espresso with hot water added, Italian beans like Lavazza or Illy are my favs
  • 1 ½ oz amaretto, I use DiSaronno Amaretto
  • 2 Tablespoons simple syrup, see below

For the topping

  • ½ cup brown sugar oat milk creamer, from Trader Joe's

If have to make your own flavored creamer

  • ½ cup 2% milk
  • 2 Tablespoons flavored coffee syrup, brown sugar cinnamon, vanilla or your choice

Instructions

  • Brew coffee using your favorite method.
    7 oz brewed, dark roast coffee or 1 (.75 oz) shot of espresso with hot water added

To whip the creamer

  • Use a frother to whip the creamer until thick and frothy, but still pourable. You can also whip it to be thicker if that is your preference.
    ½ cup brown sugar oat milk creamer

If making homemade flavored creamer

  • Add flavored syrup to bottom of the frothing container or a glass measuring cup.
    Pour in milk and froth until the desired thickness is achieved.
    2 Tablespoons flavored coffee syrup, 1/2 cup 2% milk

To craft the beverage

  • Sprinkle a little demerara sugar in the bottom of the glass.
    demerara sugar
  • Add in simple syrup followed by amaretto.
    2 Tablespoons simple syrup, 1 ½ oz amaretto
  • Pour the hot coffee into the center of a sugar-rimmed glass (see below) taking care not to splash the sides or rim.
    7 oz brewed, dark roast coffee or 1 (.75 oz) shot of espresso with hot water added
  • Carefully pour/spoon the whipped creamer over top of the coffee. Sprinkle with more sugar on top. And serve.

Rim the glass

  • Pour some some demerara sugar in a flat, wide plate or bowl.
    Pour some water or simple syrup into a second flat dish with a rim or shallow bowl that is wide enough to fit the rim of the glass.
    Place the glass rim down into the bowl/dish of water and immediately, add to the sugar bowl to rim the glass.
Course: Beverages
Cuisine: Italian
Author: Lori Murphy
Did you make this recipe? Tag @josieandnina or tag #josieandnina!

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