Black Russian Cocktail Recipe

Teddy Francisco
Published on
by Teddy Francisco
Black Russian Cocktail Recipe

If you’re looking for an easy cocktail with almost no prep time but lots of flavors, that’s the Black Russian. It’s a simple recipe that only requires two ingredients. Keep reading to learn how to mix a great one.

Black Russian Recipe

Black Russian

For a Black Russian, you only need vodka and coffee liqueur. The classic Black Russian cocktail uses two parts vodka and one part liqueur, like Kahlua, but feel free to use any other brand you like better.

Add them to an old-fashioned glass with ice cubes and stir until the drink is well chilled. You can also use a cocktail shaker, but it’s not mandatory.

The drink doesn’t require any toppings or fancy garnishes, so you can serve it right away.

Nutrition Facts and Alcohol Content

One Black Russian serving comes with:

  • 236 calories
  • 0.1g fat
  • 3.3mg sodium
  • 11g carbs (all sugars)
  • Around 30% ABV

The Black Russian’s calorie count comes mostly from the coffee liqueur. You can make a low-calorie alternative by opting for a sugar-free bottle.

Black Russian: Top Serving Tips

Black Russian Making.jpg

The Black Russian is less popular than its White Russian cocktail cousin (you can thank The Big Lebowski for that), but with these simple tips, you’ll find new levels of appreciation for this classic cocktail:

  • Use your favorite vodka: Since the ingredients list is so small, both the vodka and coffee liqueur flavors will be felt at full force. It’s best to use a type of vodka you’re familiar with to get a pleasant flavor profile.
  • Use your favorite coffee liqueur: Most Black Russian cocktail recipes use Kahlua, which is rum-based. But if you don’t like its flavor, switch it with any other type you like, such as Irish cream like Baileys, which is whiskey-based.
  • Never pre-mix with ice: If you’re having a party, making a bigger batch of Black Russian in a pitcher saves a lot of time. But keep the ice cubes separate to avoid diluting the drink.
  • Use big ice cubes: Bigger ice melts slowly and keeps the Black Russian flavor profile in pristine condition. Use this instead of a glass filled with crushed ice or small cubes.
  • Keep heavy cream nearby: The difference between a Black Russian and a White Russian is heavy cream, so it’s a good idea to have some on the table in case any of your friends or dinner guests want to try the variation.
  • Serve with desserts: The Black Russian is a great dinner drink, but the sweetness of the liqueur makes it a great pairing with sweet desserts.

Recipe Variations to Try

Apart from the White Russian, there are other great recipe variations to try out:

  • Mind Eraser: Add some soda water to make a bubblier and lighter alternative to the Black Russian.
  • Espresso Martini: Coffee lovers might not be content with just a taste of coffee from the liqueur. So instead, add vodka, coffee liqueur, freshly brewed espresso, and a dash of simple syrup to make a unique martini.
  • Garnish: The Black Russian doesn’t need a garnish, but it doesn’t mean you can’t add one and bring the drink to new heights. Top with a maraschino cherry or even a lemon slice if you want subtle citrus notes.

Wrapping Up

The Black Russian is a delicious, low-effort drink everyone will love after dinner. Choose the two ingredients carefully, and feel free to add your personal touch with the toppings to make your version of the Black Russian cocktail.

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Teddy Francisco
Teddy Francisco
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