This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (2024)

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Try this refreshing twist on a classic co*cktail: the frozen espresso martini! This easy recipe blends 4 ingredients into a creamy, frosty puree with rich coffee undertones. It’s a coffee co*cktail that hits the spot in any season!

This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (1)

Here’s your signature summer co*cktail: the frozen espresso martini! The classic espresso martini has vaulted into one of the most popular co*cktails in America. So why not try a frozen spin on the classic?

We created our own spin on this recipe and it is extremely simple to make! Many recipes call for making espresso and freezing it into ice cubes, but who has time for that? You can make our version in just 5 minutes in a blender. The creamy, frosty flavor with rich coffee undertones is absolutely divine. We can’t wait for you to try it!

Ingredients in a frozen espresso martini

As co*cktail experts with over 300 co*cktail recipes in our library, this one has a special place in our hearts! It came about as a happy accident. Wondering if we could simply use bottled cold brew coffee in a frozen version of the classic Espresso Martini, we whipped out our blender. Turns out, it works perfectly—meaning you can have the frozen version of this co*cktail ready in just 5 minutes. Here are the ingredients you’ll need:

  • Vodka:The smooth,neutral spirit provides a base for the co*cktail,allowing the other flavors to shine.
  • Kahlúa:This coffee liqueur adds sweetness and a hint of rum complexity to the mix.
  • Cold brew coffee (or strong coffee):The strong,concentrated coffee brings the bold,caffeinated essence of espresso to the martini without the need to make espresso. You can also make coffee using your favorite method: make it double strength and chill it before blending.
  • Sugar:Sugar balances the bitterness of the coffee and enhances the overall flavor. If desired, you can substitute with simple syrup, maple syrup, or agave syrup, using ¾ of the sugar specified in the recipe.
  • Ice:Crushed or cubed ice chills the co*cktail and creates a frosty,refreshing texture.

How to make a frozen espresso martini: step by step

Once you’ve gathered your ingredients, the frozen espresso martini is quick and simple to blend. Here are the basic steps (or scroll down for the recipe):

This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (2)

Step 1: Gather the ingredients: 1 cup cold brew coffee, ¼ cup Kahlua, ¼ cup vodka, 3 tablespoons sugar, and 3 cups ice.

This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (3)

Step 2: Blend the ingredients in a blender.

This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (4)

Step 3: Pour into glasses and garnish with 3 coffee beans.

What’s an espresso martini?

The Espresso Martini is a vodka martini made with coffee that was invented in 1983. London bartenderDick Bradsell of the Soho Brasseriecreated the drink for a patron who asked for a drink to wake her up.

Apparently the coffee machine was right next to the drink station, and the Espresso Martini was born. The name came in the 1990’s when flavored martinis were all the rage.

Coffee methods

We like buying purchased cold brew coffee concentrate for a frozen espresso martini because it’s so simple! You can also make homemade cold brew coffee, which is very easy and a much cheaper method. If you have a French press, try French press cold brew.

Or, make strong coffee using a dark roast bean: French press or pour over work well. Another great option is Moka Pot coffee (coffee made with a Bialetti), since its flavor is somewhere between coffee and espresso. Cool the coffee before blending.

More about Kahlua

Kahluais a coffee liqueur that’s made in Mexico. It’s made with rum, sugar and coffee. It does have some caffeine, but only about 25% as much as the same volume of coffee. The standard Kahlua is dairy-free, vegan and plant-based: it contains only rum, sugar and coffee.

You can also use other types of coffee liqueur in a frozen espresso martini, likeTia Mariaor Sheridan’s. Use up leftovers to makeKahlua drinkslike theWhite Russian,Black RussianorMudslide.

A few more coffee co*cktails

If you love a good frozen espresso martini, here are a few more coffee co*cktails might enjoy:

  • Try the classic Espresso Martini or White Russian.
  • Make a frosty and delicious Bushwacker! It’s similar to the frozen espresso martini.
  • Go for an Espresso Margarita.
  • Try boozy coffee like Irish Coffee, Kahlua Coffee, or Spanish Coffee.


Espresso Martini


Bushwacker Drink


White Russian


15 Coffee co*cktails Worth Trying

Frequently asked questions

How does a frozen espresso martini differ from a regular one?

The main difference is texture. A frozen espresso martini is blended with ice, creating a slushy, refreshing drink, similar to a frozen margarita. The flavor profile is similar to the classic co*cktail.

Can I adjust the sweetness level?

Absolutely! If you prefer a sweeter drink, add a bit more sugar. For a less sweet version, reduce the amount. We don’t suggest omitting it.

What kind of garnish should I use?

Coffee beans are the classic choice, but you can also use a sprinkle of cocoa powder or even a dollop of whipped cream.

Can I make a large batch ahead of time?

It’s best to blend right before serving to have the correct slushy texture. If desired, you can mix up the liquids and refrigerate, then blend with ice right before serving. You can also blend and freeze for up to 1 hour, then stir with a fork before serving.


This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (9)

Frozen Espresso Martini

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  • Author: Sonja Overhiser
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 2 to 3 servings 1x
Print Recipe


Try this refreshing twist on a classic co*cktail: the frozen espresso martini! This easy recipe blends 4 ingredients into a creamy, frosty puree with rich coffee undertones. It’s the drink of the summer!



  • 1 cup cold brew (or strong coffee, cooled*)
  • ¼ cup vodka
  • ¼ cup Kahlua or other coffee liqueur (like Tia Maria)
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar**
  • 3 cups ice cubes
  • Coffee beans, for garnish


  1. Place all ingredients in the blender and blend until combined.
  2. Pour into glasses and garnish with coffee beans.


*We used purchased bottled vanilla cold brew. You can also use homemade cold brew coffee, or make double-strength coffee using your favorite method.

**If desired, you can also use 2 ½ tablespoons simple syrup, maple syrup, or agave syrup as a natural sweetener.

Make ahead notes: It’s best to blend right before serving to have the correct slushy texture. If desired, you can mix up the liquids and refrigerate, then blend with ice right before serving. You can also blend and freeze for up to 1 hour, then stir with a fork before serving.

  • Category: Drink
  • Method: Frozen
  • Cuisine: co*cktails
  • Diet: Vegan

vegan vegetarian gluten free

Published on

Categorized In:

  • co*cktails
  • Drink Recipes
  • Recipes

About the authors

This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (10)

Sonja & Alex

Hi, we’re Alex and Sonja Overhiser, married cookbook authors, food bloggers, and recipe developers. We founded A Couple Cooks to share fresh, seasonal recipes and the joy of cooking! Our recipes are made by two real people and work every time.

About Us


This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer (2024)


This Frozen Espresso Martini Is the Drink of the Summer? ›

In a blender, blend frozen cold brew, vodka, Kahlúa

It was named Kahlúa, meaning 'House of the Acolhua people' in the Veracruz Nahuatl language. Jules Berman was the first importer of the liqueur to the United States, earning him the nickname "Mr. Kahlua". › wiki › Kahlúa
, and simple syrup until smooth. Pour into 2 chilled coupe glasses. Dollop with whipped topping (if using). Top with espresso beans and espresso powder (if using).

Is espresso martini a summer drink? ›

Intense, full-bodied, enveloping, intoxicating from the first sip, an 100% summer co*cktail it dates back to '80, when the English bartender Dick Bradsell created it for a famous model (probably Kate Moss, or Naomi Campbell: nobody's know the truth) who was looking for an energizing shake.

Who made the espresso martini famous? ›

While many pretenders claim that they invented the drink themselves, the real honor can be traced back to a British bartending legend in Dick Bradsell. He invented the drink at a club in the 1980s when a patron came up to him asking for a drink that would both wake him up and get him drunk.

Why is everyone obsessed with espresso martinis? ›

The espresso martini is popular because it's simply a delicious drink: Beautiful to look at (as most martinis are), sweet and smooth, and a sinful mix of caffeine and alcohol. It's suitable for almost any occasion be it brunch, aperitif, after dinner, or just because.

When would you drink an espresso martini? ›

This drink works well on its own as a party co*cktail, but can also be employed effectively at dinner parties as an excessively luxurious digestif after your main meal – both the coffee and the coffee liquor aid digestion.

What kind of person drinks Espresso Martini? ›

Espresso Martini

If this is your co*cktail of choice you are likely an intense individual who gives 100% to everything you do. Espresso Martini drinkers have a 'work hard, play hard attitude and are happy to take the lead in both professional and social situations.

What do Italians drink in summer? ›

A Guide to Italy's Summer co*cktails
  • By Francesca Montillo, ISDA Food + Travel Writer. Summer is just around the corner, and it seems to be everyone's favorite season. ...
  • Negroni. ...
  • Negroni Sbagliato. ...
  • Aperol. ...
  • Aperol Spritz. ...
  • Bellini. ...
  • Prosecco Wine. ...
  • The Hugo Spritz.
May 6, 2023

Should Espresso Martini be warm or cold? ›

The shot of espresso in your Martini should always be cold. That doesn't mean it can't be freshly brewed, but should always be popped in the fridge to chill before you add it to your drink. If your Espresso is warm enough to melt the ice in your shaker, it's too hot!

What does ordering an Espresso Martini say about you? ›

Espresso Martini: The oh-so-popular espresso martini is the anxious sibling of the avoidant classic martini. In the year 2024, the espresso martini drinker a) wants the alcohol to quell their social anxiety, b) caffeine to stay sharp conversationally, and c) is hyper-conscious about staying on-trend.

What is the nickname for Espresso Martini? ›

In 1998, Bradsell achieved a bartending hat trick by re-naming the Vodka Espresso/Espresso Martini again to now be called the Pharmaceutical Stimulant, which he served while bar manager at a restaurant called the Pharmacy in Notting Hill.

Why do bartenders hate making espresso martini? ›

If you love experimenting with your espresso machine as a hobbyist, that fiddly science can become a hobby. But if you're a mixologist at work, it's a nightmare. In fact, bartenders notably dislike making these co*cktails because of the prep time, complications, and cleanup of the espresso step alone.

Are espresso martinis bad for you? ›

The bottom line is: Enjoy your caffeinated co*cktails—but practice moderation. "An occasional, indulgent espresso martini [or other combo beverage] is not likely to cause any harm, we just want to avoid creating a habit of mixing alcohol and caffeine," warns Dr. Bonney.

Is it weird to order an espresso martini with dinner? ›

The combination of coffee and alcohol can be the perfect way to round out a dinner party or date night.

Do espresso martinis sober you up? ›

What Happens When You Mix Coffee and Alcohol. Unlike what most movies and TV shows want you to believe, sipping on coffee when you're intoxicated doesn't actually help sober you up,1 according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Is an espresso martini an upper or downer? ›

Espresso martinis were supposedly created by a London bartender for a model who asked for a drink that would “wake her up, then mess her up” — only she didn't use the word “mess.” Similar to vodka Red Bulls, espresso martinis mix the “upper” of caffeine and the “downer” of alcohol.

What is a dirty espresso martini? ›

A Dirty Chai Espresso Martini combines the aromatic spices of chai tea with the boldness of espresso and the smoothness of your favorite vodka or rum.

Is martini good for summer? ›

Bring All the Sunshine With the Summer Martini

This co*cktail is classic, sunny, bright, and balanced. It's also just plain smart. The Summer Martini offers the same clean flavor profile as a classic Martini but with a refreshing citrus twist.

Are espresso martinis meant to be cold? ›

After all, espresso martinis are designed to be a chilled drink. But espresso shots, by their very nature, are piping hot, and they can lose some of their magic if they cool down to a lukewarm coffee.

Why are espresso martinis trendy? ›

“Even more than the caffeine boost, I think Espresso Martinis are so popular these days because bartenders have learned how to make them taste great. Using fresh, high-quality espresso, a good coffee liqueur and good vodka, it's easy to see why they're so much more delicious than they were a few decades ago.”

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