If you've been on TikTok or Instagram lately, there's no way you could have missed the frothy, whipped peaks of Dalgona coffee.
The uber-trendy drink is made by mixing instant coffee with sugar and hot water and whipping it until it reaches that luxurious consistency, then spooning it over milk (or a plant-based alternative).
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After the drink became a hit, people started giving other beverages the Dalgona treatment. "You can make almost anything into a whipped drink," says Miami-based food influencer Valentina Mussi, a prolific whipped drink creator.
"I've done peanut butter, cookie butter, matcha, cocoa and more. My advice is to get creative and don't be afraid to experiment."
Here are some fun ways to transform some of your favorites into whipped drinks — and make them a bit healthier, too.
1. Zero-Sugar Whipped Coffee
If you're cutting back on sugar and coffee is part of your routine, good news: You can still enjoy Dalgona coffee.
"Opt for a sweetener that doesn't have any added sugar," says keto chef and blogger Joe Duff. "A lot of sweeteners have either maltodextrin or dextrose added to them, and these are just names for sugar."
Also, if you're converting a regular Dalgona coffee recipe into a zero-sugar version, you may need to adjust the amount of sweetener, notes New York City-based bartender Chelan Finney.
Though many low-carb sweeteners (such as erythritol and stevia) say you can use them in a 1:1 ratio to sugar, you may find some of them are more or less sweet than you're used to. Simply start with less than the recipe calls for and add as needed.
No matter what drink you prefer, two principles apply:
- For one, be sure to keep whipping until you get the fluffiest texture.
"What I tell people is to whisk until your arm goes numb and don't stop," Mussi says. "I've been using a metal whisk coated with silicone, but any whisk should work. You can also use an electric mixer if you aren't up for a workout."
- And whether you opt for dairy or coconut cream, be sure it's well-chilled. Use a metal bowl, which retains the cold, and put it and the whisk in the freezer for a few minutes before you whisk — this will help the cream whip up faster and give you more volume, Mussi says.
2. Whipped Cocktails
Whipping drinks is something mixologists have been doing for years, Finney says.
"Any time I'm picking up my shaker tin, I'm technically whipping the drinks," Finney says. Now you can incorporate some of that expertise to whip up your favorite cocktails — and you don't need a cocktail shaker to do it. A whisk, blender or handheld milk frother will give you the same result, Finney says.
With Dalgona coffee, instant coffee is key to getting that whipped texture (there are varying explanations for why this is, but everyone seems to agree that instant coffee is essential).
But if you don't want instant coffee in your cocktail, Finney suggests incorporating other ingredients that whip nicely, such as egg whites, pineapple juice, heavy cream or the vegan egg substitute aquafaba.
How to Make a Whipped Pineapple Margarita
A good drink to start with is this Pineapple Dole Whip Margarita, a tasty whipped cocktail inspired by the Dole Whip dessert from Disneyland, which incorporates pineapple. It's cool and refreshing, has no added sugar and only requires a few simple ingredients and a blender.
3. Whipped Matcha
With its dramatic bright-green hue, matcha is already super Instagramable — and even more so when whipped.
It's also tied to a handful of health benefits, including immune support, good heart health and weight loss. Blogger Jessica Hylton-Leckie makes a healthy version of whipped matcha with coconut cream, which she gets from refrigerating a can of coconut milk and then spooning out the cream that separates to the top.
"Make sure to use full-fat coconut milk. That'll give you the best whip," she says. In addition, Hylton-Leckie recommends using cold maple syrup instead of powdered sugar, or swapping in a low-carb sweetener such as powdered monk fruit.
Honey is another good sweetener option, according to Jessica Beacom, RDN and Stacie Hassing, RDN, co-founders of The Real Food Dietitians.
"Honey worked the best for us when we tested [our coffee] recipe and created a thick foam that whipped into stiff peaks for maximum drama," Beacom says.
Though you can use less than what recipes call for, you can't eliminate sweetener altogether, Beacom notes. "You can get by using a scant tablespoon of sweetener to make the topping, but you can't leave it out entirely, as it's necessary to create the foam."
4. Whipped Chocolate Milk
If your kids want to get a taste of the whipped drink craze, but they're not quite ready for coffee, you can whip up a quick chocolate milk.
An easy (and healthy) way to do it is to use egg whites — but be sure to buy pasteurized egg whites to avoid the risk of harmful bacteria.
Here's how to make it:
- Whip 1 egg white with a pinch of salt until it forms soft peaks.
- Add 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder and 2 to 3 teaspoons honey and beat until it forms medium peaks.
- Pour milk into a cup with ice and spoon the whipped chocolate on top.