Gingerbread latte with an optional dash of alcohol is what is not available in the average coffee shop. All those cosy and comforting flavours that are associated with this popular drink plus a little kick of booze. This homemade gingerbread coffee is quick, easy and utter bliss. You really should try it.
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This boozy version of a homemade gingerbread latte is everything I crave in a coffee libation – milky, sweet, a not-so-subtle hint of robust coffee and a kick of alcohol. Without a doubt, I love this gingerbread coffee. It is my idea of perfection… in a pretty glass.
But here’s the truth: if I go to a coffee shop, you will usually find me ordering tea. I do most of my coffee drinking at home because I know just how I like it. I really have to trust the barista to order one out.
Also, chains such as Starbucks and Costa know how to charge for fancier drinks, such as a gingerbread latte, so it’s not a spending habit I really want to get into.
I have labelled this drink as a boozy gingerbread latte because that really is my favourite way to enjoy it. However, this seasonally spiced gingerbread coffee is still disarmingly tasty and pure comfort without any alcohol.
Love a latte? Then be sure to read up on my Biscoff latte too – it’s another cosy coffee drink to get into. And if you fancy something a little stronger but with a little sweetness about it, you’ll adore my Spanish latte.
What is in a gingerbread coffee?
A gingerbread latte is a milky coffee drink infused with the flavours of gingerbread. I’ve used a heavily spiced homemade gingerbread syrup to steep my coffee with those flavours. Included in this syrup are all the usual suspects associated with gingerbread:
- black treacle (molasses)
- dark muscovado sugar
Any extras, such as whipped cream and sprinkles are entirely up to the whim of the drinker. Around the festive season, it’s fun to dress this gingerbread coffee up with mini gingerbread men or gingerbread men sprinkles.
A boozy gingerbread latte is exactly as described above, but with the addition of a little alcohol. Double joy.
If you’re in the mood for discovering more fun festive drinks then take a look at my Christmas latte and my Chocolate Orange hot chocolate. The latter is guaranteed to be loved by kids and adults alike. Coffee cocktail lovers should also not overlook my gingerbread Black Russian.
Why you should make this homemade gingerbread coffee
There are three major reasons why a homemade gingerbread drink is a great idea:
- Let’s be honest who really wants to spend £3+ at Starbucks or Costa whenever the urge to indulge in a gingerbread coffee strikes? Making this drink at home is so much more purse-friendly.
- Similarly, who really wants to have to drag themselves to their nearest Starbucks or Costa every time a craving hits? The DIY gingerbread drink is yours for the taking, whenever you fancy one, once you’ve knocked up a batch of gingerbread syrup.
- Coffee shops have a tendency to only serve this drink around the festive season, but the DIY version is available all year round. Homemade gingerbread drinks never have to be off the menu. Fancy one in the height of summer? Go for it… or turn it into an iced gingerbread latte!
Aside from those obvious reasons, let’s not forget that this DIY gingerbread drink has plenty going for it taste-wise too:
- It is sweetly spiced and complements the coffee wonderfully.
- It’s also smooth and creamy.
- And of course, you can make the coffee as strong or mild as you like.
- The amount of syrup included in your gingerbread coffee can also be varied to suit your own tastes exactly.
There are really just a couple of things to note about the ingredients needed for this gingerbread latte recipe:
Coffee: the type of coffee (and the strength of the coffee) you brew for this drink is entirely up to you. However, given that the flavour is being altered by the spiced syrup, arguably, you don’t need to use the highest quality coffee around.
This drink is best when made with a shot of freshly brewed espresso coffee but I’ve also made this drink using coffee granules and enjoyed it too. Basically, there’s no need to be a coffee snob when it comes to this recipe.
Gingerbread syrup: I’d suggest using my recipe for homemade gingerbread latte syrup. I developed this syrup with the intention of using it in this hot gingerbread drink, so you can be assured it has enough flavour to stand up against the coffee.
If using an alternative syrup (either homemade or store-bought) please be aware that you may need to use more/ less depending on how strong the flavour is. Clearly, if the syrup only has a mild flavour, significantly more would be needed and this could make the overall drink far too sweet to be enjoyable. So for assured gingerbread coffee perfection, go with my syrup recipe instead.
Assuming that you’ve already made your syrup, making this festive gingerbread coffee drink is quick and easy:
- Heat the milk to around 70C/ 160F then stir in the syrup.
- Optional: blitz with a stick blender or milk frother until frothy.
- Brew the coffee and add it to the milk.
- If using alcohol pour it into a heatproof mug or glass.
- Top with the hot milky gingerbread coffee.
- Garnish with whipped cream and toppings of choice and serve.
- The trick to achieving a luxurious drink is to use either espresso coffee or coffee granules diluted in just a small amount of water so that milk is the dominant liquid in the drink.
- I suggest using 10-15g ground espresso to brew 40ml of espresso coffee. Alternatively, dissolve a rounded teaspoon of coffee granules in 40ml of hot water.
- And I do recommend using whole (full-fat) milk for a truly sumptuous finish – it adds just the right level of creamy indulgence to this drink.
- Vary the strength of the coffee according to your own tastes, but remember that very strong coffee may mask the spice profile of the latte syrup.
- If you are serving this gingerbread latte at a party then consider setting up a festive latte bar including a choice of alcohols (see below for suggestions), whipped cream, marshmallows, mini gingerbread men or 3D gingerbread houses, sprinkles, grated chocolate and cinnamon sticks. Guests will love assembling their own drinks (and it’s one less thing for you to do whilst hosting).
Frequently asked questions
Technically yes you can make this gingerbread latte in a Crockpot, but I’m not quite sure why you would want to. It takes 5 minutes to make this recipe fresh but several hours in a slow cooker. If you were making this drink using whole spices then a slow cooker would be a good way to do it, to allow the spices to infuse, but not for this syrup-based recipe.
However, pouring a large batch of this gingerbread coffee into a slow cooker to keep it warm during a party is a good option. In this instance, I’d leave out the alcohol and let guests add their own at the point of serving since not everybody will welcome that nip of booze in their Christmas latte.
Of course! I’ve never bought gingerbread syrup myself, but I know that Starbucks sell their own version and that Costa use Monin syrups. The exact amount needed to flavour your drink may vary from the measure listed in the recipe (my homemade version has quite a punchy flavour). Start by adding a little (say 1 tablespoon), tasting and adjusting upwards from there.
Yes, you can. Simply multiply the ingredients by however many servings are needed and mix the cold milk, brewed coffee and syrup together in a jug. Don’t heat it up at this point, simply store it all in the fridge and pour out a serving as required, heating as instructed. Be sure to give everything a good stir before pouring out a serving to ensure the syrup hasn’t settled on the bottom of the jug.
Tip: It’s a good idea to leave the alcohol out of a large batch, so you don’t accidentally pour yourself a boozy coffee at an inappropriate time.
Of course. Always ensure that the syrup you are using is vegan and then simply replace the dairy milk with a good non-dairy milk alternative. I’ve just discovered barista oat milk which froths up gorgeously and has a wonderful taste, so I recommend this for making a vegan gingerbread latte. Almond milk is also a good option.
Have fun topping the drink with vegan whipped cream.
What alcohol can I add to gingerbread coffee?
I used Tia Maria coffee liqueur in my spiked gingerbread latte as I did not want to detract from the coffee & cosy spice profiles of this drink by introducing an additional flavour. Similarly, Kahlua would also work well.
But what if you fancy the boozy version of this gingerbread drink but you’re out of coffee liqueur? No worries – just try any of the following alternatives:
- Baileys Irish Cream
- Spiced rum
- Dark rum
- Vanilla vodka
Whatever you decide to use, don’t overdo it. A small measure (20ml) is sufficient to add a gentle buzz of alcohol without going over the top. Go gently to avoid overpowering the coffee and gingerbread flavours.
There are so many variations to gingerbread coffee that can easily be made at home. Just grab yourself some latte syrup and get creating:
- Gingerbread tea latte (aka gingerbread chai latte) – use this latte syrup in place of masala chai syrup for a speedy gingerbread-infused version of masala chai.
- Decaf gingerbread latte – cut the caffeine by using decaffeinated coffee.
- Gingerbread mocha latte – make your favourite mocha (coffee and chocolate) then add the gingerbread latte syrup (you may want to leave out the sugar from the base mocha recipe as the syrup will sweeten the drink).
- Skinny gingerbread latte – use semi-skimmed and omit whipped cream and sprinkles to make a slightly healthier version of this drink.
- Gingerbread iced latte – brew the espresso coffee, stir in the syrup and pour into a large glass filled with ice. Top with cold milk.
- Without coffee – pour steamed milk over the spiced syrup for a coffee-free, caffeine-free sweet milky treat. Children will adore this.
More cosy drinks to try
Have you made this recipe for homemade gingerbread latte? How did you get along? What did you make with it? Feel free to leave a rating and/or comment below to let me know.
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Gingerbread Latte (with Optional Alcohol)
For the Boozy Gingerbread Latte
- 40 ml Espresso coffee made from 10-15g gorund espresso coffee or 1 rounded teaspoon of coffee granules dissolved in very hot water.
- 30 ml Gingerbread syrup
- 180 ml Whole (full fat) milk
- 20 ml Coffee liqueur optional
- Whipped Cream
- Gingerbread sprinkles
- Ground cinnamon/ nutmeg
- grated chocolate
Make the Boozy Gingerbread Latte
- Heat the milk to scalding, then stir in the gingerbread syrup
- Optional: blitz with a stick blender until frothy
- Add the alcohol of choice (optional) to a heatproof mug or glass
- Pour the hot coffee into the mug/ glass
- Top with the hot gingerbread milk
- Optional: garnish with whipped cream and toppings of choice
Make the Gingerbread Milk Steamer
- Heat the milk to scalding, then stir in the gingerbread syrup and blitz with a stick blender until frothy
- Pour into a heatproof glass
- The trick to achieving a luxurious drink is to use either espresso coffee or coffee granules diluted in just a small amount of water so that milk is the dominant liquid in the drink
- And I do recommend using whole (full-fat) milk for a truly sumptuous finish – it adds just the right level of creamy indulgence to this drink
- Vary the strenth of the coffee according to your own tastes, but remember that very strong coffee may mask the spice profile of the latte syrup
- If you are serving at a party then consider setting up a Christmas latte bar including a choice of alcohols (see below), whipped cream, marshmallows, mini gingerbread men or 3D gingerbread houses, sprinkles, grated chocolate and cinnamon sticks. Guests will love assembling their own drinks (and it’s one less thing for you to do whilst hosting)
- Use a slow cooker to keep a large batch of this drink warm during a party. In this instance, I’d leave out the alcohol and let guests add their own at the point of serving since not everybody will welcome that nip of booze in their Christmas latte