Best White Russian Recipe + Video

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Our Best White Russian Recipe creates a creamy, rich, and decadent cocktail. Learn how to make this classic drink that’s easy to stir, serve, and sip.

A dash of mocha, a splash of vodka, and a drop of cream is all you need to mix together an award-winning drink.

titled (shown in cocktail glass); best white russian recipe

This simple cocktail recipe is also deliciously versatile, with customizations and variations for every ingredient.

Best White Russian Recipe

So what makes this the best White Russian recipe? It has just a hint of sweetness and a delicate vanilla flavor. It’s smooth, iced coffee consistency and taste profile also means it’s a total crowd favorite.

A delicious drink calls for the best desserts to go with it! My mocha smores dip pairs so well with the coffee flavors in this cocktail.

These toffee caramel cookies also go really well with the drink’s bitter notes.

For another creamy mocha cocktail, check out my mocha express! It’s just as silky smooth, but with a bigger kick of coffee flavor.

RECIPE VIDEO

Watch the video below to see how to make the best White Russian recipe!

Tips and Tricks

  • Make it frozen! Blend everything together with one cup of ice until you achieve a slushie consistency.
  • Stirring cocktails on the rocks dilutes them. The more you stir, the more water you add to the mix. A good rule of thumb is to stir for no more than 20 seconds when mixing.
  • Get great layers every time. To keep your creamer layer from mixing with the liqueur, pour the creamer slowly over the back of a spoon.
white Russian recipe ingredients - bottles of vanilla creamer, Kahlua and vodka

Serving Suggestions

Throw together some seasonal garnishes for every occasion! Sprinkle some cinnamon into the glass during the fall, or throw in a peppermint stick during the holiday season. Rimming the glass with crushed candy canes would be tasty as well!

For a refreshing summer treat, top the frozen variation of this drink with a dollop of whipped cream.

I also recommend serving with a straw – this way, you won’t have to mix before serving, allowing guests to stir their own drinks and enjoy the layered presentation.

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pouring vodka over ice in highball glass

White Russian Cocktail Variations

Check out these delicious variations of the original, classic vodka and Kahlua drink!

  • Bailey’s White Russian – The booziest version of this drink! Add Bailey’s Irish Cream to your Kahlua White Russian in place of the coffee creamer.
  • Rumchata White Russian – Try out this variation for a spicy cinnamon taste! Rumchata takes the place of Kahlua and makes the drink much sweeter.
  • White Russian With Milk – For a thinner, less sweet cocktail, swap out the coffee creamer with plain milk. Great for those seeking a low sugar drink.
pouring Kahlua into vodka cocktail

White Russian Recipe FAQ

What’s the difference between a white Russian and a Mudslide?

While both are delicious vodka cocktails made with Kahlua, a Mudslide also includes some Bailey’s Irish Cream, and is typically served as a frozen cocktail.

How do you keep cream cocktails from curdling?

Avoid using low-fat, skim, or most non-dairy milks. High fat creamers keep the mixture emulsified when combined with acidic liquors.

Does a White Russian drink taste like coffee?

Yes! The best white Russian recipe includes a coffee liqueur that gives sweet, slightly bitter notes of mocha. Kahlua and coffee creamers are a great pair for that!

overhead: 2 cocktails with Kahlua and vodka

Enjoy!

With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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Best White Russian Recipe + Video

Donna Elick
Our Best White Russian Recipe creates a creamy, rich, and decadent cocktail. Make this classic drink that’s easy to stir, serve, and sip.
Tried this recipe?Please comment and review!
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Drink
Cuisine American
Method Mixed
Servings 1

Ingredients
 

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 1 1/4 ounces coffee liqueur, we used Kahlua
  • 1 1/4 ounces French Vanilla Creamer, or heavy (whipping) cream

Instructions
 

  • Fill glass with ice, add vodka and coffee liqueur. Stir to combine. Pour creamer over top. Serve and enjoy.

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 1 | Calories: 253cal | Carbohydrates: 17g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 3mg | Sugar: 17g | Iron: 1mg

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe’s nutritional value will vary depending on the ingredients used, measuring methods, and portion sizes.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
titled collage for best white Russian recipe

Originally published November 2012, updated and republished February 2022

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