Chocolate Espresso Martini Recipe

5 from 1 vote
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This chocolate espresso martini recipe is the ultimate dessert cocktail that’s fit for any nightcap. Made with vanilla vodka, coffee liqueur, espresso, and chocolate liqueur, it’s creamy, delicious, and has just enough chocolate to curb any cravings! The best part? You don’t need an espresso machine.

A frothy and chocolaty espresso martini garnished with 4 espresso beans floating on top.

Why I Love This Recipe

This cocktail can be made a few different ways depending on what spirits you have in your home bar. The base espresso martini is made with vanilla vodka, Kahlua, and espresso. This variation can be served as is for a traditional expresso martini.

For a chocolate twist, I will also add creme de cocoa or chocolate liqueur and a splash of cream. This will transform the drink into a rich dark chocolate concoction, also known as the chocolate espresso martini. It’s undeniable.

If you enjoyed this cocktail, also try my chocolate martini, the holiday eggnog cocktail, and my classic Irish Coffee recipe!

Ingredients

  • Vanilla vodka: my favorite vanilla vodka is Stoli Vanil. You can use regular vodka, but the vanilla adds extra character. You can also add a drop of vanilla extract!
  • Espresso: use fresh espresso if you have an espresso machine or instant espresso! Since this drink has so many ingredients, instant espresso works great in a pinch. I like Cafe Bustelo.
  • Chocolate liqueur or creme de cocoa: any decent chocolate-flavored liqueur should get the job done, creme de cocoa works well but chocolate liqueur such as Trader Vic’s works even better. Experiment with dark or milk chocolate liqueur. It’s a matter of preference.
  • Kahlua or coffee liqueur: Kahlua adds additional coffee flavor, sweetness, and body. The combination of cream and liqueur makes the cocktail thick and chocolatey.
  • Cream: half and half or light cream are your best options. In a pinch, you can use whole milk. I’ve found that heavy cream tends to separate and clump as the drink is sipped.

Step By Step Instructions

Step 1.

Pour some chocolate syrup on a plate and dip a chilled coupe glass upside down in the chocolate to coat the rim of the glass.

Step 2.

Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with no ice. Add the espresso last to cool and then fill with a cup of ice.

Quick Tip

Adding the espresso to the other ingredients will help to cool the espresso down before adding ice. Adding hot espresso over ice will cause excessive dilution.

Step 3.

Shake vigorously for 10 seconds and double strain into your chilled coupe. Garnish with espresso or coffee beans.

A frothy and chocolaty espresso martini garnished with 4 espresso beans floating on top.

Expert Tips

  • Chill your glasses ahead of time in the freezer to keep your drinks cooler for longer. This is one of my favorite tricks in the summer.
  • Always double-strain shaken cocktails through a fine mesh strainer. This removes tiny ice chips that will dilute the cocktail as it warms. It will also improve the foamy head.
  • I like using a 5-6-ounce coupe or Nick and Nora glasses because they’re compact and easier to freeze! Traditional martini glasses are tippy and bulky.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is my espresso martini not thick enough?

The secret to a rich espresso martini is using cream and rich liqueur. A good chocolate liqueur will be on the thicker side, rendering a fuller body. The cream will also assist in enhancing mouthfeel.

Can I use instant espresso?

Yes! it’s good to always have some instant espresso on hand. It’s one of several ingredients that will blend right into the background and offer the necessary espresso notes to pull the drink off. It’s a less attractive option for a traditional espresso martini.

Can I use baileys in an espresso martini?

Yes, however, it does tend to be overpowering if not used sparingly. I would recommend using 1/2-3/4 ounces in place of chocolate liqueur and or cream. The overall benefit is richness and creaminess.

More Dessert Cocktails

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5 from 1 vote

Chocolate Espresso Martini Recipe

Servings: 1 cocktail
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
The ultimate dessert cocktail made with vanilla vodka, coffee liqueur, instant espresso, and chocolate liqueur.

Ingredients 

  • 1 1/2 ounces vanilla vodka
  • 1 ounce espresso, fresh or instant
  • 3/4 ounce Chocolate liqueur or creme de cocoa, I like Trader Vic's
  • 3/4 ounce Kahlua or coffee liqueur
  • 3/4 ounce cream
  • chocolate syrup for rim and coffee beans for garnish

Instructions 

  • Pour some chocolate syrup on a plate and dip a chilled coupe glass upside down in the chocolate to coat the rim of the glass.
  • Combine all ingredients in a cocktail shaker with no ice. Add the espresso last to cool and then fill with a cup of ice.
  • Shake vigorously for 10 seconds and double strain into your chilled coupe. Garnish with espresso or coffee beans.

Notes

Chill your glasses ahead of time in the freezer to keep your drinks cooler for longer. This is one of my favorite tricks in the summer.
Always double-strain shaken cocktails through a fine mesh strainer. This removes tiny ice chips that will dilute the cocktail as it warms. It will also improve the foamy head.
I like using coupe or Nick and Nora glasses because they’re compact and easier to freeze! Traditional martini glasses are tippy and bulky.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 306kcalCarbohydrates: 26.3gProtein: 1.5gFat: 5.2gSaturated Fat: 0.3gSodium: 20mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 18.6g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Cocktail
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @kitchenswagger or tag #kitchenswagger!

About Shawn Williams

My name is Shawn, author behind Kitchen Swagger. I'm a food & drink enthusiast bringing you my own simple and delicious restaurant-inspired recipes.

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2 Comments

  1. Hieeee. My daughter in law has been away in the Navy for a year. We’ve been talking about an Espresso Martini celebration when she comes home. Well.. she’ll be here at the end of the month & I’m so excited.. for the espresso martinis!! You betcha!
    You said you wouldn’t buy an espresso machine. You don’t need a fancy machine that does all the tricks. Just a simple espesso pot you can get on Ebay for about $10. So well worth it. Just get a stainless steel one since aluminum contributes to dementia. (so I’ve read). It takes less than 5 min. to make perfect espresso. Coffee was making me nauseous so a friend said it was the acid. That’s how I was turned on to epresso.. 15yrs ago. No more acid. Please give it a shot. Much better than instant. Best if you start with cold water.. just like coffee.

  2. 5 stars
    Super tasty! I did the 2nd variation and had to substitute canned whipped cream instead of basic cream. Topped it off after shaking with more whipped cream in my glass and threw some chunked chocolate pieces on top and turned out delicious!