Dalgona coffee has become rather popular in America in the past year and once you have tasted it, you will understand why! When made correctly, many people prefer Dalgona coffee over regular hot or iced coffee.
The trick to making the best Dalgona coffee is to find the best instant coffee for the recipe. There may be some people out there that say you can used regular brewed coffee in the recipe, but do not fall for the hype.
To make the best Dalgona coffee, you need to know why instant coffee is necessary, which kind is best, and how you can use it correctly. Not every instant coffee is the same and finding the right one for your Dalgona coffee is just a cup of coffee and one read away from your grasp.
What is Dalgona Coffee?
Dalgona coffee, as we know it, is a coffee beverage that is made by spooning a whipped concentrated coffee topping onto a cold cup of milk. The mixture is whipped up using a simple recipe of 3 ingredients in the same small amounts including instant coffee, hot water, and granulated white sugar.
Can You Use Regular Ground Coffee for Dalgona?
Some people will claim that Dalgona coffee can be made with regular ground coffee, but that is simply not true. Instant coffee is prepared differently than regular ground coffee and because of this, it can be used to make the true concentrated whipped Dalgona part of the drink. Regular coffee grinds simply will not work to make actual Dalgona coffee.
Why Do You Have to Use Instant Coffee Crystals for Dalgona?
Instant coffee is prepared coffee that has been dehydrated and freeze-dried in order to preserve the coffee in a dry form. When you add hot water, it rehydrates and mixes with the water to create liquid coffee. When you add a small amount of hot water to the instant coffee crystals, it will turn into a concentrated coffee, the ideal combination for Dalgona.
Regular coffee is made by brewing hot water over ground-up coffee beans. If you put a small amount of hot water with ground coffee, you will still have coffee bean grinds left in the mix, even when the hot water has done its work.
You cannot use it to make Dalgona because the grinds would remain, it would not whip up correctly, and it would not be concentrated enough to mix correctly with your milk.
5 Best Types of Coffee for Dalgona
1. Nescafe Original Instant Coffee
- PREMIUM COFFEE—Savor rich, bold flavor in an instant with the pure coffee taste of NESCAFÉ CLÁSICO Dark Roast Instant Coffee
- EXCEPTIONAL TASTE—Elevate the taste of the coffee in your cup in an instant with this full-bodied, dark-roasted coffee that’s full of flavor
- PURE QUALITY—Crafted with respectfully grown coffee beans from around the world, NESCAFÉ is proud to be the world’s best-selling coffee brand*
- EASY TO PREPARE—It’s easy to make a perfect cup of coffee—simply scoop one teaspoon, add hot water, stir and enjoy whenever and wherever you want
- MAKES 100 CUPS—Scoop your way up to 100 cups of real, premium instant coffee
Nescafe Original instant coffee is an excellent option for your Dalgona coffee recipe. It is a dark blend of instant coffee with a deep, bold flavor that adds an extra punch to the mixture. You cannot go wrong with this option.
2. Folgers Classic Roast
- Contains 1 – 8 ounce easy-open flip-top Jar of Folgers classic roast instant coffee
- 100% pure coffee. Roasted in New Orleans, Louisiana
- Easy-open flip top lid seals in freshness
- Just add water, stir and enjoy for a quick instant coffee
- Use in recipes to add a rich coffee flavor. Dissolves smoothly in batters and sauces
Folgers Classic Roast instant coffee is a great choice if you are looking for a familiar coffee brand that you know you can trust. This is a nice medium roast that is not too strong, but strong enough for the job at hand. It blends beautifully and is the one I gravitate towards the most.
3. Starbucks VIA Instant Coffee Medium Roast
- Starbucks VIA INSTANT COFFEE PACKETS—Starbucks delivers exceptional coffee cup after cup with single serve instant coffee packets of Starbucks VIA Instant Pike Place Roast medium roast coffee—50-count box
- PIKE PLACE ROAST—A smooth, well-rounded blend of Latin American coffees with subtly rich notes of chocolate and toasted nut, it’s perfect for every day
- FRESH TASTE—Starbucks adheres to the highest quality standards—freshly shipping you the same carefully roasted 100% arabica coffee beans we brew in our cafés
Many brand aficionados swear by the Starbucks VIA instant coffee and they may be onto something. This instant coffee is made with very high-quality coffee beans and it offers a medium roast taste that really brings the flavor. This is one of the best options for making Dalgona coffee with a coffee shop feel at home.
4. Nescafe Taster’s Choice
- NESCAFE Taster’s Choice House Blend Coffee Stick Packs are a smooth and mild roasted coffee made from 100% pure, responsibly sourced coffee beans
- Master Coffee Crafters roast and brew our special blend of premium quality coffee beans. They then flash freeze the coffee to lock in the signature smooth and well-balanced flavor.
- Easily prepare fresh-tasting, consistent coffee without the hassle of roasting and grinding
If you want to try Nescafe, but prefer a medium to dark roast coffee, this may be right up your alley. This Nescafe Taster’s Choice offers a French roast that is strong but smooth. It is made with extremely high-quality coffee beans and is another great option for Dalgona coffee makers.
5. Community Coffee Signature Blend Dark Roast
- Rich & Bold Blend: Our original dark roast blend roasted to deep, dark perfection with notes of decadent dark chocolate. Rich, smooth flavor with a deep chocolate profile. Served for over 100 years
- Ground Beans: We take high quality 100% Arabica beans, roast them & grind them to perfection. Our ground coffee is constantly watched, brewed & tasted by our experts for rich & flavorful coffee
- Community Is Everything: From using responsibly-sourced coffee beans to programs that support military service members, local schools & more, Community Coffee gives back to our partners & local communities in every way we can
A great bold, dark roast instant coffee that has been around for more than a century. It has a rich flavor and a chocolatey tone that can make for an excellent Dalgona coffee. This is one of the best instant coffee options you can choose from.
5 Steps for Making Dalgona with Instant Coffee
- 2 tbsp Hot Water
- 2 tbsp Granulated White Sugar
- 2 tbsp Instant Coffee
- 8 oz Milk
- Medium to large-sized mixing bowl
- Electric Whisk Blender
- 10-12 oz cup
- Gather ingredients and supplies needed.
- Combine the water, sugar, and instant coffee together and whisk for between 5 and 10 minutes. It will look odd and you will not expect it to actually thicken and whip up but trust me, it will! It will lighten and thicken up the longer it is whisked. Hand whisking could take up to 15 or more minutes.
TIP: DO NOT TASTE. WHIPPED DALGONA IS VERY BITTER AND STRONG.
- Once whipped, prepare a glass of cold milk with or without ice. Keep some room at the top of the glass for your whipped coffee.
- Spoon the whipped Dalgona coffee mixture onto the top of your milk.
- Lightly stir your Dalgona mixture into the milk and ENJOY!
Things to Remember
- Do not taste the Dalgona whipped mixture by itself because it will be so bitter you may forgo the whole concoction then and there.
- Mix it in with the milk a little before you try it.
- When you are whipping the mixture, do not get discouraged! It will start off very dark and as you whisk, it will begin to lighten and thicken at the same time. Keep whisking until it is whipped to the consistency of whip cream.
Dalgona coffee swept the country almost a year ago, and if it is made correctly, it is really an extremely tasty coffee drink that can rival many coffee shop specialties. The trick is being patient and waiting for the mixture to whip up even though you will be convinced that it will not. Mix it in lightly with your milk before you taste it and you may just find your new favorite coffee drink.
Making Dalgona coffee is pretty easy, but it takes a little patience and preparation. To prepare for this article, I used the following sources.