two black russian cocktails in old fashioned glasses on a wooden table with coffee beans and a jigger in the background
Drink Recipes

How to Make a Black Russian Cocktail Recipe

If you’re looking for a simple drink with a kick, the Black Russian cocktail is what you need. This cocktail hasn’t been around for a long time, but it has made a mark in the drinking community. It was first crafted in the late 1940s, alongside the White Russian, its cousin, by a bartender in Belgium. After that, the cocktail made its way to the west and became very popular.

This cocktail combines vodka and coffee liqueur to create the masterpiece of cocktails. It’s quick and simple to make, and with the right combination can taste amazing. Give it a try!

two black russian cocktails with ice and a straw i a wooden table with coffee beans surrounding the glasses

Here’s What You’re Going to Need

You’re going to need some equipment to make a Black Russian:

  • Cocktail Shaker
  • Whiskey glass
  • Jigger/shot glass

For The Cocktail:

  • Vodka
  • Coffee liqueur

Black Russian Drink Recipe

black russian cocktail on a table with plaid table cloth

Black Russian

The Black Russian is a very simple drink. Some might say it is the father of the classic, White Russian. It is believed to have been created in the 1940s in honor of Perle Mesta. This cocktail is made by combining vodka and coffee liqueur.
Prep Time: 1 minute
Total Time: 1 minute
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: black russian, cocktail, vodka
Servings: 1
Calories: 171kcal
Cost: $3


  • Shaker
  • Jigger


  • 1.5 oz Vodka
  • 0.75 oz Kahlua (any coffee liqueur will work)
  • Ice cubes


  • Add ice cubes to a glass.
    melting ice cubes on a table with a blurred background
  • Add your vodka and coffee liqueur to the shaker and shake!
  • Pour into the glass, sit back, and enjoy.
    a bottle of smirnoff vodka, a bottle of kahlua, and a black russian



Calories: 171kcal | Carbohydrates: 10g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 2mg | Sugar: 10g
Tried this recipe?Mention or tag #thedailydrink!

History of the Black Russian Cocktail

The Black Russian is a cocktail that has only been around for less than 100 years, at least, as far as we know. Although it is considered to be new in the cocktail industry, this drink has become popular internationally.

It made its first appearance in the late 40’s when Gustave Tops, a bartender at the time at the hotel Metropole in Brussels, made it in honor of the US ambassador, Perle Mesta.

The name ‘Black Russian’ comes from the Russian originated vodka in the cocktail, and the coffee liqueur which gives this drink a dark color.

two black russian cocktails in old fashioned glasses on a wooden table with coffee beans and a jigger in the background

Recipe F.A.Q’s

Is there a different type of liquor I can use?

It is not recommended to use another type of liquor because the overall taste of the drink will be different, since there are only two parts.

Where can I get this?

You can find coffee liquor at a local grocery store and most liquor stores sell vodka!

My drink is too strong for my liking, what can I do?

If the drink is too strong you can add less vodka or more coffee liquor.

Recipe Size Conversion

Do you want to make this cocktail for a party or event? We have you covered. This calculator will tell you how many milliliters you need for every ingredient. All you need to do is type the number of drinks that you would like to make in total and the calculator will do the rest.

Variations Of The Black Russian Cocktail

This interesting video helps better explain the origins of the cocktail, as well as multiple other variations of it, including the Dirty Russian, Irish Black Russian, and more!

Some Other Great Drink Recipes To Try:

One Comment

  1. 5 stars
    I tried this one night with the boys and we got completely hammered it was an awesome night but huge hangover.

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