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how to make iced mocha

How To Make A Delicious Iced Mocha

An iced coffee is a staple around the globe. Whether you're hitting up Starbucks for your go-to on a summer day or cooling down at your local cafe, there are always plenty of drinks that can be made over ice to make your usual caffeine boost all the more refreshing. You might think that this is a modern invention thanks to recipes like the iconic Starbucks iced mocha, but iced coffee actually dates back hundreds of years.

What Is In An Iced Mocha?

two glasses of iced mocha

Today, an iced mocha is iced coffee mixed with milk, ice and, of course, chocolate syrup.

Traditional mocha coffee drinks are not named for their flavor but rather their origin; they are made from distinct coffee beans that hail from a place called you guessed it, Mocha, a city in Yemen. Mocha beans come from the Arabica plant.

Coffee arabica is the most popular type of coffee plant that grows in mountainous regions; it can hail from many places, and each country's coffee has its own distinct qualities. It's stronger than its cousin, Robusta coffee, but it makes up nearly 60 percent of the entire world's coffee crops.

Iced Coffee History

Iced coffee seems to be a modern invention, and by many standards, it is. Coffee recipes that combine lots of sweet flavorings and toppings, like chocolate syrup and whipped cream, are recent inventions. But the act of pouring brewed coffee over ice is can be traced back centuries to various countries throughout Latin and South Americas.

The modern frappuccino we all know and love was actually invented by accident in 1957 by a Greek man named Dimitris Vakondios. It's derived from the Frappé coffee takes its name from the French verb meaning, "to beat," referring to the frothy substance that the iced coffee takes on after being shaken or blended.

Some cold coffee drinks can function as dessert recipes with all their added confectioneries while others are a simple way to enjoy leftover coffee on a hot day. However you like yours, the sky is really the limit so long as you have coffee, an ice cube tray and milk.

What Is The Difference Between Iced Latte And Iced Mocha?

iced mocha

An iced latte is a light, espresso-based drink that combines 1/6 espresso with 4/6 milk and foamed milk. Depending on your preferences, you can dress up your drink with whipped cream, syrups, sauces and other toppings. Plenty of coffee shops put their own spin on popular drinks, and their espresso machine becomes the portal to an entirely new world of creative coffee expression.

An iced mocha typically combines cold brew with milk and chocolate flavoring. It can be made with iced coffee or espresso, and it's typically topped with whipped cream and may be adorned with some drizzle or chocolate sprinkles if you're feeling extra fancy.

Although you can still prepare an iced mocha with espresso instead of coffee. It all boils down to preference and taste. If you want to make a "pure" iced mocha, then you'd use espresso and prepare a traditional mocha without steaming the milk.

How To Make An Iced Mocha With Cocoa Powder

Anyone with an espresso machine can easily whip up their own iced mocha at home. Any iced coffee drink you want to make typically only needs espresso, milk and ice. If you don't have an espresso machine, just whip up some cold brew with our cold brew recipes!

For this iced mocha recipe, you'll need:

  • 1/2 cup of your favorite cold coffee OR 1 shot of espresso. Leftover coffee works great!
  • 1/2 cup milk. Any recipe can be made vegan by adding almond milk.
  • A mason jar with a lid.
  • Ice cubes.
  • 1 tbsp of unsweetened cocoa powder.
  • 2 tsp of cane sugar.
  • Whipped cream (optional).


1. Prepare your cocoa powder by adding a dash of hot water and mixing it until it forms a syrup at the bottom of your mason jar.

2. Add your ice. Alternatively, you can freeze your iced coffee into coffee ice cubes and use those instead.

3. Pour in your cold coffee or espresso shot.

4. Add milk and stir well.

5. Add sugar to taste and, if desired, top with whipped cream.

Starbucks Iced Mocha Recipe (Copycat)refreshing iced mocha

If you came here looking to learn some coffee recipes including how to make an iced mocha at home, you've come to the right place. This Starbucks copycat recipe will allow you to whip up this 1 cup tasty mocha iced coffee item any time.

For some pro tips, consider freezing coffee instead of ice cubes and using them instead. Pouring milk over ice coffee cubes can make for a perfect summer drink that only gets better as it sits.

Starbucks uses their own espresso for these coffee recipes, so you can either buy their brand or choose your own. The real secret to perfecting the taste at home is using quality cocoa-based syrup that has a bittersweet mocha flavor rather than overwhelmingly sugary chocolate taste.

As with any drink, you can always scale up your milk and syrup by a few ounces to compensate for a larger cup. For example, a grande Starbucks iced mocha recipe is 16 ounces and prepared with 2 shots of espresso, 2-percent milk and four pumps of their signature mocha syrup.


  • 1 shot of chilled espresso OR 1/2 cup of your preferred cold brew.
  • 1/2 cup milk or milk alternative.
  • 1 to 2 tbsp of high-quality chocolate syrup.
  • Whipped cream and caramel syrup as topping (optional).

Recipe Instructions:

1. Squirt your chocolate syrup into the base of your glass.

2. Add ice, and use several more than you typically would if you are using coffee cubes instead of standard ice.

3. If you aren't using coffee cubes, add ice and then pour in your coffee or espresso.

4. Add milk and optional whipped cream topping and drizzles of caramel.

5. Stir well and enjoy!

McDonald's Inspired Iced Mocha Recipe

iced mocha in a jar

The McDonald's iced mocha is one of the more popular fast-food coffee offerings. Although it might not be something you indulge in every day, it does make a super creamy sweet treat that's perfect on a hot day. You can even use decaf in these coffee recipes to enjoy yours as a dessert in the evening!

To recreate that irresistible frothiness at home, you'll use a blender instead of just stirring all your ingredients. McDonalds' drinks tend to be more fattening with higher sugar, so we've reduced the quantity of sugar per serving. Feel free to add more and experiment with your own blend until you find a balance you're satisfied with.


  • 1 cup of coffee poured into ice cube trays and frozen.
  • 1 cup of milk or your preferred alternative. Coconut is a refreshing, lighter substitute.
  • Mocha syrup from a high-quality vendor.
  • 2 tsp. of granulated sugar or sweetener.
  • Optional shaved chocolate bar, whipped cream and mint garnish.


Recipe Instructions:

1. Once your ice coffee cubes are thoroughly frozen, toss them into the blender and add your milk and syrup.

2. Blend well until you achieve your ideal texture. More ice will create a frothier blend, but removing a few cubes or adding more milk will create a smoother, thinner mixture.

3. Add sugar and top with whipped cream. Mint can be a refreshing twist that emulates the restaurant's popular Shamrock Shake.

Now that you know some iced mocha recipes that you can make with brewed coffee, sugar and ice, see Barista Warehouse's range of coffee machines and get started on that delicious iced mocha!

Enjoyed this post? See our last post on How To Make The Best Long Black Coffee.

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