8 of Our Favorite Coffee Recipes for International Coffee Day

Celebrate the best holiday of the year with these perky beverages.

September 29, 2021
Photo by Julia Gartland

Today, I will be celebrating International Coffee Day the only way I know how—with iced coffee and cold brew, lattes and cappuccinos, pumps of vanilla and pumpkin spice syrup, single and double shots of espresso, and maybe even a coffee cocktail (or two). If you want to join in on the fun, grab some beans, plenty of ice, a highball glass, and an eco-friendly straw to make one of these highly caffeinated beverages for International Coffee Day on October 1st.

Of course, there are plenty of places where you can get a free cup of coffee if you’re out and about. Bring a reusable cup to Starbucks on September 29th (which is technically "National Coffee Day") and receive a free cup of Pike Place Roast hot coffee. Or head to Dunkin and get a free coffee with any purchase (say 100 munchkins? Or two dozen donuts?) if you are a member of their free loyalty program. The same deal can be found at 7-Eleven, which will give customers a free coffee with the purchase of a baked good. Arguably the best deal is at Krispy Kreme, which is offering a free cup of Joe AND a free donut. Plus if you show your vaccination card, you can receive a free glazed donut. Double donut Wednesday it is!

But before I do that, I’ll need a little caffeine to get me going. That’s where these eight coffee recipes come in. Start your day with an extra-special iced coffee and end it with one of our coffee-inspired cocktails and mocktails.

1. Magical Coffee

What makes this iced coffee drink “magic” is the fact that, in addition to water and coffee grounds, the base is made with cinnamon and dark brown sugar. All of the ingredients steep together overnight in a jar and then are strained into a glass for the sweetest, most luxurious iced coffee you’ve ever had.

2. Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Put away the half-and-half, almond milk, or cream and replace it with condensed milk, the sweet secret behind this irresistible beverage.

3. Andrew Chau & Bin Chen's Japanese Coffee Cola

Americans love Cherry Coke and Japanese can’t get enough of coffee-flavored Coca-Cola. Here, Andrew Chau and Bin Chen tried to recreate that flavor in the form of a float made with Cola and cold brew, topped with a salted buttercream whipped cream. And they nailed it.

4. Iced Coffee with Avocado (Es Alpukat Kopi Susu)

An all-in-one glass of chocolate syrup, avocado slices (for creaminess!), and iced coffee isn’t exactly on the menu at Starbucks, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t add it to your morning routine.

5. Coffee Old Fashioned

Once 5 o’clock rolls around, it’s time to tuck away the drip coffee machine and grab a double old-fashioned glass. This cocktail uses coffee liqueur (like Kahlua), Scotch whiskey, sherry, and bitters for a happy hour beverage that comes together in a matter of minutes.

6. Lavender Iced “Lattes”

“The bitterness of coffee works with floral lavender syrup for a drink that's surprisingly delicate but not at all sweet,” writes recipe developer Sarah Jampel.

7. Toffee Coffee

An after-dinner drink for the alcohol-free, this non-alcoholic cocktail is made with hot brewed coffee, fresh fennel, caramel syrup, and spicy Seedlip (a booze-free spirit).

8. Turkish Coffee

Grab a traditional Turkish coffee pot (you know the one you had just sitting in the back of your kitchen cabinets) and heat cold-filtered water with ground Turkish coffee for a strong cup to sip on International Coffee Day.

How are you celebrating International Coffee Day? Share your ideas in the comments below!

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Former Food52 Staff Editor