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Affogato recipe and its variations

Affogato is probably one of the easiest desserts to prepare and its popularity is not fading!

This combination of hot espresso and creamy vanilla ice cream is simply delicious.

It’s a perfect way to end a meal, which can be served both in summer and winter.

The affogato and its variations

Ice cream and espresso for an affogato
Photo: Tony Liao / Unsplash

In its classic form, the affogato is simply vanilla gelato over which a hot espresso is poured just before eating it.

But there’s no reason not to enhance it and add your personal touch to it with alcoholic liquors and garnishes!

How to make an affogato?

Coffee poured over ice cream for an affogato
Photo: Jojo Yuen / Unsplash

To make an affogato, nothing could be easier.

Start by preparing an espresso.

Meanwhile, place two scoops of ice cream of your choice in a glass or bowl.

When it’s time to eat, pour the hot espresso over the ice cream, add the toppings if you have them and you’re done.

What ratio of ice cream (gelato) and espresso should you use? Ideally, two parts of ice cream are used for one espresso. Too much coffee can make the dessert too runny.

Ice cream or gelato? It’s your choice, although the classic dessert uses gelato.

Other points to consider for a successful affogato

  • It is important that the ice cream is very cold so that it does not melt too quickly when the espresso is poured.
  • For a nice effect, use transparent glasses or bowls to see the ice cream and espresso mix.

Ideas to improve and vary your affogato


What toppings to add to an affogato?

For a sweeter touch or to add a crunchy texture to your affogato, here are some toppings you can add:

  • whipped cream
  • chocolate shavings
  • chopped almonds and nuts
  • cookie crumble or chopped biscotti
  • maple sugar flakes
  • chocolate syrup or caramel.

Add your favorite liqueur or cream alcohol

Glass of ice cream and espresso

It’s no secret that alcoholic creams and liqueurs go very well with coffee. Just think of Irish or Brazilian Irish!

You can also add a drop of your favorite liqueur: Kahlua, Barista coffee liqueur, Coureur des Bois maple, Bailey’s, amaretto…. you are spoiled for choice!

Vary the ice cream or coffee

To be even more creative, you can offer other ice cream flavors besides vanilla.

If you choose a vanilla ice cream, however, we recommend choosing one with a vanilla bean for a richer taste.

But otherwise, chocolate, cookies, vanilla and maple crunch are other great options for making an affogato.

The important thing is to choose a flavor that will blend well with the coffee.

And if you don’t have a machine to make espressos, no problem. Just make sure you make the strongest coffee possible.

You could even use different grains, like mocha, to vary the taste.

Affogato recipe
Yield: 1 portion

Affogato recipe

Temps de préparation: 5 minutes
Temps de cuisson: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Because the simplest things are often the best and we can't resist the combination of coffee and vanilla!


  • 1 espresso
  • 2 scoops of vanilla ice cream or gelato
  • Toppings of your choice: alcoholic liqueur, chopped nuts, chocolate chips, cookie crumble, whipped cream, chocolate or caramel syrup, etc.


  1. Prepare the espresso
  2. Meanwhile, place two scoops of ice cream in a glass or bowl
  3. Pour the espresso over the ice cream just before serving, add toppings if desired and enjoy immediately.

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