Affogato is a delicious Italian dessert that has been popularized in recent years. Traditionally, it consists of espresso poured over ice cream. It’s the perfect summer treat and can be enjoyed by both adults and children alike. In this blog post, I will share seven recipes for affogato for you to try at home with some fun and interesting twists!
Affogato, the classic Italian dessert, has come to represent Italy’s effortlessly cool approach to desserts, cooking, work, and life.
Espresso is poured over vanilla ice cream in a harmonious pairing that neither fights with nor competes against each other – rather, they complement one another perfectly. The simplicity of this concoction belies its comforting flavor and texture, which are an instant favorite!
Trust the Italians to create something simply delicious.
The humble affogato, or more traditionally known as “affogato al cafe” only made its way into the English dictionary in 1992.
Directly translated, the word affogato means drowned. Which is apt as the scoop of ice-cold vanilla is ‘drowned’ in hot coffee.
But with flavors so simple the opportunity to add a little twist to the standard recipe is far too tempting.
So come along for the ride and let us explore the alternatives and twists we can spin on this deliciously simple, classic dessert.
1) Matcha Affogato
Matcha, a delicious yet healthy green tea from Japa, turns a vibrant green shaden when ground up. Matcha is made by grinding the young tea leaves together and turning them into a bright powder. Matcha has been hailed as the most nutritious type of teas you can drink because of the high levels of antioxidants called catechins. Studies have linked drinking matcha with many health benefits such as preventing heart disease or type 2 diabete, and aiding in weight loss.
So a dessert that helps me lose weight? Where do I sign?!
- 1 can refrigerated coconut cream
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2 tbsp matcha powder (add according to your preferred strength)
- 1/2 cup condensed milk
- honey to taste
Open the can of coconut cream and take out only the solid cream. Save the coconut water for a cocktail in the sun or a healthy shake.
Whisk the cream until light and fluffy.
Whisk in the vanilla, condensed milk, and matcha powder. If this is a little runny, don’t worry at all. It should freeze into delicious ice cream without too much hassle.
Decant the liquid into a freezer-safe Tupperware and pop it into the freezer.
Once you’ve decided to have your matcha affogato, take the ice cream out of the freezer to allow it to thaw a little. This will make it easier to scoop.
Boil up some water and stir 3tbsp water to 1 tbsp matcha powder
Scoop the ice cream into a bowl, top with the matcha shot, and serve.
2) Cotton Candy Affogato
Cotton Candy, oh how can we resist such fluffy goodness? For me, it brings back memories as soon as I see its brilliant pastels or walk by the stall at our local mall where children are giggling away.
The sight of kids running around with their cotton candy clouds on sticks never failed to put an ear-to-ear grin on my face and still doesn’t.
But cotton candy, coffee, and ice cream in one bowl?
Full disclosure, this recipe did have the jury divided. It seems to be a love it or hate it reaction.
So try it for yourselves and let us know in the comments!
- 1 scoop of vanilla ice cream
- 1 shot of espresso
- Cotton candy (you measure this with your heart)
Place your ice cream in the bottom of a bowl, place your cotton candy on top and pour hot coffee over the top.
Enjoy the trip down memory lane – now with added caffeine!
3) Dark Chocolate Brownie Affogato
Is there anything more decadently indulgent than a dark chocolate brownie, peppered with praline and caramel notes, topped with vanilla ice cream, and ‘drowned’ with espresso?
If there is, I’m not sure I could bear to look.
Chocolate brownies are comfort food to me. They remind me of home and my grandmother, who would spend hours in the kitchen concocting her latest recipe. I’d always go to sneak a taste before she took them out of the oven – which didn’t make me very popular but made for some delicious brownies indeed.
Conversely, they also remind me of decadent desserts out in the city. Sitting up on a rooftop restaurant, overlooking the skyline. If there’s a brownie on the dessert menu, that’s usually my first choice.
So comforting luxury, now with added coffee? I’m in.
Let’s look at the twist on a classic set of luxurious flavors.
For the brownies:
- 5 oz unsweetened chocolate
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 2 eggs
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup of dark cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp of salt
- 1/2 cup strong, brewed hot coffee
For the affogato:
- 1 brownie, as per recipe or store bought, crumbled
- 1 scoop of vanilla ice cream
- 1 shot of strong, hot espresso
Preheat your oven to 350F and line an 8×8 pan with parchment.
Place the butter and chocolate in a microwave-proof bowl. Heat for 20 seconds on high and stir until it’s all mixed.
Whisk the eggs, sugar, and vanilla extract until the sugar is completely dissolved.
Mix the dry ingredients.
Combine the cooled chocolate with the eggs, then mix in the dry ingredients, followed by the coffee until everything is consistent.
Pour into the pan and cook for about 35 minutes.
Cut into 16 squares once cooled.
When you are ready to make the affogato, crumble the brownie in a bowl.
Top with delicious vanilla ice cream and pour over a shot of hot espresso.
4) Hot Chocolate Affogato
A winter warmer and a dessert the kids can enjoy too.
This recipe replaces the espresso with hot chocolate.
Simply take a scoop of your favorite ice cream (anything from mint chop chip to vanilla) and pour a shot of your favorite hot chocolate.
Enjoy straight away! This is a fun treat the whole family can enjoy!
For a twist on a twist – use white or dark hot chocolate!
5) Baileys Affogato
Now Baileys is the go-to liqueur of many a wise woman, but this boozy twist on the classic affogato can be made with any liqueur.
Some of my suggestions include:
Baileys, Irish Whiskey, Kahlua, Mozart Chocolate liqueurs, Frangelico or Amaretto.
These liqueurs all pair well with vanilla, salted caramel, hazelnut, and chocolate ice creams.
Put a scoop of your chosen ice cream in a bowl.
Make a shot of espresso and add 1 tablespoon of your chosen liqueur.
Pour the piping hot espresso luxuriously over the ice cream and enjoy!
6) Affogato Mocha
This pairing of affogato sees us inviting those deliciously complementing flavors of dark rum and chocolate. Such rich and smoky flavors instantly make you thin of leather-backed chairs, brandy, cigars, and billiards. Pull this recipe out for your more discerning guest, especially if your crowd for the evening is skewing masculine.
Try for a semisweet chocolate ice cream and perhaps some dark chocolate sprinkles to garnish the top.
This particular dessert is definitely a cold winter’s nightcap and will send you off to dreamland with a little fire in your blood.
- 1 scoop of chocolate ice cream
- 1 shot of espresso
- 1 tablespoon dark rum
Mix the dark rum in with the espresso and serve with a flourish over the scoop of chocolate ice cream.
7) Tiramisu Affogato
Can you get more Italian than a classic Italian dessert served as a twist within another classic Italian dessert? I don’t think this could possibly be more Italian if it drove in on a Vespa crying “Ciao!”.
We may be flying in the face of good taste here or we may have saved the best for last.
I think you should decide (though if you ask me, it is delicious and ingenious all at the same time.)
- 3/4 cup chilled heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1-pint vanilla ice cream
- 1-pint coffee ice cream
- 9 ladyfinger biscuits, broken into bite-sized pieces
- 1 1/4 cups of fresh espresso
- grated dark chocolate to use for garnish
Whip the cream and sugar together until firm.
Put a small scoop of vanilla and coffee ice creams in each bowl and place some ladyfinger pieces on top.
Pour the espresso over and spoon some whipped cream on.
Sprinkle with a little grated, dark chocolate to garnish
Affogato is a delicious Italian dessert that has been popularized in recent years. Traditionally, it consists of espresso poured over ice cream. It’s the perfect summer treat and, with our delightful twists, can be enjoyed by both adults and children alike.
We’ve compiled seven delicious recipes for you to try at home. Whether you want something simple and the classic affogato, or something more adventurous like an affogato with Kahlua, we’ve got a recipe that will suit your taste!
Let us know in the comments below which one is your favorite!