April 11 (Food Network) – It’s safe to say that by now you know all about the creamy coffee trend that’s sweeping TikTok. Officially known as dalgona coffee, this South Korean beverage is comprised of instant coffee, sugar, hot water and milk. To make it, simply whisk the instant coffee, sugar and hot water together into a golden-brown foam and place that foam on top of your milk.
Once finished, this easy-to-make drink melts into a beautiful, white and gold ombré color and boasts a sweet coffee flavor with a pillowy texture. Dalgona coffee is basically a creamier, cheaper version of your go-to iced coffee, and it seems like everyone nowadays is giving it a try.
However, I couldn’t help but notice that non-coffee drinkers are putting their own spin on this trendy caffeinated concoction.
Turns out, you can swap the instant coffee for cocoa powder or hot chocolate mix and make a velvety chocolate froth. Allegedly, if you top your milk with this chocolatey foam, you’ll get a whipped drink that tastes like frozen hot chocolate.
As a fan of regular ol’ dalgona coffee, I knew I had to put this variation to the test. After watching countless videos on TikTok, I came to the conclusion that chocolate-loving users were switching the instant coffee for cocoa powder, but the rest of the recipe stayed the same.
To start, I measured out two tablespoons of cocoa powder, granulated sugar and hot water. I combined all three ingredients into a small bowl and started whisking. I whisked for about five minutes, but for some reason, my ingredients weren’t getting creamy. I then whisked for another five minutes, but still no creaminess! I continued to whisk until my arm gave out, and while my mixture was slightly thicker, it wasn’t nearly as foamy as when I made dalgona coffee.
Disappointed, I added my runny, chocolatey mixture to my glass, and although it seamlessly blended into the milk, the drink was entirely too watery. It didn’t have that delectably smooth texture of the coffee version. Instead, it was basically just chocolate milk.
Not one to be defeated, I pulled out my phone, opened the TikTok app and started searching for a solution. After watching a few more dalgona chocolate videos and reading the comments, I realized my mistake. A few commenters mentioned that using cocoa powder, sugar and hot water will eventually work, but it can take up to 20 minutes to whisk these ingredients into a foam by hand! To make the process easier, these users suggested using a thicker liquid, like heavy whipping cream.
Eager to try again, I measured out my ingredients. However, this time I swapped the two tablespoons of hot water for two tablespoons of hot heavy whipping cream that I had warmed up in the microwave. I used a whisk to beat the mixture, and after about six minutes it successfully turned into the thick, creamy froth I had seen before. I scooped the rich chocolate foam onto my glass of cold milk and used a spoon to swirl it all together.
I took a sip and could immediately tell a difference from my first attempt. This drink was much thicker and was filled with clumps of gooey, foamy chocolate. Overall, it tasted like drinking a liquid version of a chocolate mousse. Chocolate milk can often taste syrupy, but this drink was rich from the cocoa powder without being overly sweet.
So, while figuring out the perfect chocolate version of dalgona coffee definitely gave me a wicked upper body workout, this delightfully fluffy drink was totally worth it.