White Russian Recipe

A classic White Russian recipe is a favorite with coffee lovers. A creamy, coffee-infused cocktail that’s wonderful as an after dinner drink.

If creamy cocktails are your jam, try our retro Toasted Almond Cocktail or this Campfire Milk Punch, perfect for sipping by a fire – inside or out!

white russian cocktail with ice and metal shot glass

What Is A White Russian?

A White Russian recipe is a drink recipe made with Kahlua, Vodka and cream. Usually this cocktail is served in a low ball glass or an old fashioned glass, but you can really make it however you’d like. But since this cocktail is so creamy and rich, it’s typically served in a smaller glass.

This drink recipe is actually a variation of the original drink, a Black Russian, which is served without the cream. Other variations include a Blind Russian (served with Irish Cream) and a Souther Russian served with Southern Comfort.

Ingredients You’ll Need

The ingredients for this cocktail are simple. You can substitute half and half or even whole milk but heavy cream is the thickest (and the tastiest) and with lighter creams or milk the cocktail won’t be as rich.

  • Vodka
  • Coffee Liquor (Kahluha)
  • Heavy Cream

How To Make A White Russian

Making a White Russian is as easy as adding the ingredients to a glass over ice, but there is a trick! We like to fill an old fashioned glass with a good amount of ice and start with the Kahlua first.

kahlua being poured into low ball glass with ice

Next you can add the vodka. Plain vodka for this cocktail recipe, nothing flavored. You don’t have to use the most expensive vodka for this drink but I wouldn’t use bottom shelf vodka, either.

My rule of thumb is that you have your mixing booze and your sipping straight up booze. You should still like the flavor of mixing booze, not just trying to cover up the flavor.

The cream is poured in slowly or over the back of a spoon so that you get these nice, deep swirls as we’ve shown you here.

cream being poured into white russian drink

How To Serve A White Russian

To serve a White Russian, just add a straw so that your guest can stir the drink if they like to. If you use the straws for sipping, you’ll get the bottom layer of Kahlua and vodka first, then the cream that’s floating on top.

My preference is to stir the drink slightly, then sip it with the glass. This way the rich cream layer hits you first and helps to tame down the boozy Kahlua and vodka layer.

white russian cocktail with cream swirling in glass

Let us know if you try this classic cocktail recipe! We love switching things up during cocktail hour instead of always grabbing a beer or a glass of wine. Making cocktails like this makes those couple of hours of the evening feel like a special occasion!

Looking For More Classic Cocktail Recipes?

white russian cocktail with ice and metal shot glass

White Russian Cocktail

  • Author: Dan
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 drink 1x

A classic White Russian is a favorite with coffee lovers. A creamy, coffee-infused cocktail that’s wonderful as an after dinner drink.



  • 2 ounces coffee liquor (like Kahlua)
  • 1 1/2 ounces vodka
  • 23 ounces heavy cream


  1. Add ice to a low ball glass.
  2. Pour in the Kahlua and vodka, then top off with heavy cream. You might use more or less depending on the size of your glass.
  3. Serve with straws for stirring.

Recipe Notes

To make the cream swirl and sit on top of the drink pour the cream in slowly or over the back of a spoon.

  • Category: Cocktails
  • Method: Stir
  • Cuisine: American

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