Peppermint Espresso Martini
This lovely cocktail is a minty take on an Espresso martini cocktail which is typically made with espresso, vodka and Kahlua - for this tasty minty version, I love to use peppermint vodka but peppermint schnapps or a dash of peppermint extract works well here too. I love chocolate and peppermint together and I love coffee as much as I love chocolate so I knew I would love this peppermint coffee martini and I have a feeling you guys will too. Its minty (refreshing), sweet, boozy and rich from the espresso with a creamy, foamy top. This peppermint espresso martini is so simple to make with just a few ingredients, and is the perfect any time of year cocktail and great as an after dinner cocktail (great with dessert) and I would even say the perfect brunch cocktail too - brunch, coffee and something boozy is always a good idea!
What is a Peppermint Espresso Martini?
It is a peppermint take on a classic espresso martini. This kind martini is technically not a true martini or French style martini which is typically made with gin or vermouth. Instead it’s made with vodka and it’s always shaken for that frothy top. It’s served in a martini glass and a real treat after dinner. The perfect cocktail for all you coffee lovers out there!
Ingredients for this Peppermint Espresso Martini
- Espresso/Coffee – a shot of espresso is all you need or a double shot if you want to make a stronger cocktail recipe - it’s ideal to use strong espresso coffee preferably brewed in a machine with plenty of froth! Don’t have an espresso maker or espresso machine - no problem. Strongly brewed coffee will work or you can even use cold brew concentrate. You can use instant espresso but it won’t give you the same level of flavor - so its not ideal. I have not tried this with decaf coffee but it will definitely work if you want the cocktail without the caffeine kick.
- Kahlua – this is a really tasty coffee and rum liqueur that tastes great in this cocktail. It’s the perfect addition to the peppermint Kahlua martini. Any coffee liqueur would work here. Some add baileys (especially Baileys espresso blend) too but that will add some creaminess to it
- Vodka – I used Peppermint Vodka, but any peppermint-flavored liqueur will work. If you can’t find peppermint vodka, just use a regular vodka (any brand) and add a dash of peppermint extract to add that signature minty flavor. You could even add some Peppermint schnapps to the cocktail along with the plain vodka to add that minty flavor too.
- Simple syrup – this is used to sweeten the cocktail and mellow the strong flavors of the coffee and vodka. You can use store-bought simple syrup in bottles or you can make your own easily! Just heat equal parts granulated sugar and water over medium high heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Remove it from the heat and let it cool to room temperature, and you’ve got simple syrup ready to add in to your peppermint espresso martini recipe or any cocktail. If you prefer you could also also use a straight sweetener like honey, maple syrup or agave to sweeten your cocktail up. Use as little or as much simple syrup or sweetener as you like - adjust amounts according to taste.
- Garnishes - typically an espresso martini is garnished with coffee beans/espresso beans - these are a traditional and fun garnish for the ultimate coffee martini recipe that you can sprinkle over the martini for an extra garnish but that is optional - even more fun would be chocolate covered coffee bean. For this peppermint version I like to use crushed peppermint candy pieces -I like to dip the glass in some chocolate syrup then dip it into the crushed candy but you could also rim it with simple syrup instead of the chocolate sauce
- Variations - use crème de cacao or add in some chocolate sauce to the shaker for a more peppermint mocha martini or a Kahlúa peppermint mocha martini. Some like to add a splash of cream for a creamier version
What You Will Need to Make this Peppermint Espresso Martini:
- Prepared Martini glass or coupe glass
- You need a cocktail shaker not a mixing glass, because unlike other martinis this drink is almost always served shaken to get that frothy foamy top layer similar to a latte. If you don’t have a shaker, make it in anything with a secure lid even a mason jar will work.
How to Make Peppermint Espresso Martinis
- Prepare Glass - For the peppermint rim glass use a little chocolate sauce on the edges or simply syrup and dip it into crushed peppermint candies.
- Brew the coffee then pour into a bowl to cool more quickly
- Fill the cocktail shaker with ice then add the cooled coffee, Kahlua, peppermint vodka and simple syrup.
- Shake the cocktail very hard in the cocktail shaker for a good 15-20 seconds
- Strain the espresso martini into prepared martini glasses.
- Top with a couple of coffee beans if you desire and serve.
Tips for The Perfect Peppermint Espresso Martini
- Make sure to cool the coffee completely after brewing it or it will melt the ice and you won’t have a nice chilled cocktail.To cool your coffee quickly you can put it in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes.
- Martinis are best when served very cold, it’s a nice touch to chill your glasses first. You can do this by putting them in the freezer or the fridge, whichever you have room for. 15 to 30 minutes
- Make sure to shake the cocktail pretty vigorously so you create that lovely foam on top.
- When pouring the cocktail into your glass do it swiftly to ensure the foam all ends up on top
- If you don’t have prepared/storebought simple syrup you can make it by bringing equal amounts of sugar and water to boil until the sugar has dissolved then cool to room temperature before adding to cocktail.
What Makes an Espresso Martini Frothy?
Some say its making sure to use freshly brewed and chilled espresso to get that real coffee crema, but I think it’s all about the shaking. A lot of shaking in a chilled cocktail shaker (or other chilled sealed container) with ice. You want to shake for at least 15-20 seconds. This not only chills the drink, it also creates that nice frothy foam on top. Serve it quickly after you finish shaking it and pouring it to get the nicest foamy top layer. The shaking will also give the cocktail a nice creamy luscious texture.
For The Glass Garnish (optional)
- 2 tablespoons Chocolate syrup, cold
- ½ cup crushed peppermint candies
For the Cocktail
- ice for shaker
- 1-2 oz peppermint vodka (¼ cup)
- ½ oz coffee liqueur (1 tablespoon)
- 1 oz espresso (freshly brewed espresso), cooled (2 tbsps)
- ½ oz simple syrup (1 tablespoon), more or less to taste
For the Glass Garnish
- Place chocolate sauce on a small plate and place crushed peppermint Candy in a separate small plate.
- Dip rim of glass into chocolate syrup to thinly coat all around the edge of the glass then gently dip the edges of the glass along the crushed candy to cover the rim with crushed candy bits.
For the Cocktail
- Add ice, peppermint vodka, coffee liqueur, espresso, and simple syrup to cocktail shaker.
- Shake vigorously until frothy (at least 15-20 seconds). Pour into prepared cocktail glass along with any remaining foam in shaker. Serve immediately.
- If you don’t have a shaker, make it in anything with a secure lid even a mason jar will work.
- Don’t have an espresso maker or espresso machine - no problem. Stongly brewed coffee will work or you can even use cold brew concentrate.
- If you can’t find peppermint vodka, just use a regular vodka (any brand) and add a dash of peppermint extract to add that signature minty flavor. You could even add some Peppermint schnapps to the cocktail along with the plain vodka to add that minty flavor too.