Last week I visited my cousin in Oregon and stopped at a Dutch Bros Coffee shop for the first time. He recommended I order a drink called the Kicker which was phenomenal and gave me that nice kick of caffeine I rely on to get through the day. But now I’m back home in Michigan where there are no Dutch Bros Coffee Shops, which made me wonder, how do you make a Dutch Bros Kicker at Home?
In This Article
- What is a Dutch Bros Kicker?
- Ingredients & Equipment
- Dutch Bros Kicker Recipe
- Recipe Tips
- Nutrition Facts
What is Dutch Bros Kicker?
Dutch Bros’ “Kicker” is a signature drink from the popular Dutch Bros Coffee chain. It’s an iced or hot coffee drink that blends espresso with the rich and creamy taste of Irish cream.
Typically, the Kicker is made with espresso, Irish cream-flavored syrup, and milk served over ice for the cold version or with steamed milk for the hot version. The drink is often topped with whipped cream for some added sweetness.
Dutch Bros customers love the Kicker for its smooth, creamy taste and kick of caffeine.
Psst, we’ve also written recipe guides on how to make a Dutch Bros Golden Eagle at home and how to make the viral Dutch Bros Strawberry Horchata Chai.
Ingredients & Equipment You Need to Make a Kicker
To recreate the Dutch Bros’ Kicker at home, you’ll need a few key ingredients and pieces of equipment. Chances are, you most likely have everything lying around your home. Or, if you’re lazy like me you can get them all via grocery delivery.
- Espresso or Strong Brewed Coffee – Ideally, you’d use freshly brewed espresso, but if you don’t have an espresso machine, a strong brewed coffee will also work. (Go for a dark roast!)
- Milk – You can use any milk or milk alternative you like, such as whole milk, skim, almond, oat, or soy.
- Irish Cream Syrup – This gives the Kicker its distinctive flavor. There are dozens of commercial brands available (view on Amazon here), but you can also find recipes to make your own if you prefer.
- Whipped Cream – This is optional, but it adds a great finishing touch to the drink.
- Ice – If you’re making an iced version of the Kicker.
- Espresso Machine or Coffee Maker – To brew the espresso or strong coffee.
- Milk Frother or Steamer – If you’re making a hot version and want frothy milk. This is optional as you can also just heat the milk on the stovetop.
- Glass or Mug – A glass for the iced version and a mug for the hot version.
- Measuring Tools – For the milk and Irish cream syrup, to ensure consistency.
- Spoon – For stirring the drink.
Dutch Bros Kicker Recipe
Making the Dutch Bros Kicker at home is a very quick and easy process. Once all the ingredients and equipment are ready you can get the job done in as little as 5 minutes.
1. Brew the Espresso or Coffee
Use an espresso machine to brew 1 to 2 shots of espresso. If you don’t have an espresso machine, prepare a strong brewed dark roast coffee. Using a Moka Pot or Aeropress will make customizing your coffee’s strength easier than a traditional drip coffee machine.
2. Get Your Glass or Mug Ready
If you want to make an iced version, fill your glass 3/4 full with ice. For a hot version, pre-warm your mug by filling it with hot water, letting it sit for a minute, and then emptying it.
3. Add Irish Cream Syrup
Pour 1 to 2 pumps (or 1 to 2 tablespoons) of Irish cream syrup into the glass or mug. Adjust the amount based on your preferred sweetness.
4. Pour in Espresso or Coffee
Add the freshly brewed espresso or strong coffee to your glass or mug.
5. Add Milk
- For the Iced Version – Pour 6 to 8 ounces of cold milk into your cup
- For the Hot Version – Heat and froth the milk until it’s airy and warm before pouring it into the mug. You can find a handheld milk frother on Amazon here. Another option is to warm the milk in the microwave and then pour it into a water bottle or thermos and shake it up for 30 seconds.
Using a spoon, stir everything together.
- Optional – Top with Whipped Cream
7. Serve and Enjoy
Kick back, relax, and enjoy a caffeinated kick in the comfort of your home.
If you want to top your Dutch Bros Kicker with something a little more special than regular whipped cream, learn how to make the iconic Dutch Bros Soft Top here.
Dutch Bros Kicker Recipe Tips
To make the best Dutch Bros Kicker possible, you want consistent results each time you bust out the equipment and ingredients to make it. The tips below will help ensure you get just that.
- Freshness Matters – Use freshly brewed espresso or coffee for the best flavor. If possible, grind the coffee beans just before brewing to capture all of those fresh oils.
- Quality Syrup – Invest in a high-quality Irish cream syrup. This is the key flavor in the drink, so ensure it’s a brand or flavor you enjoy.
- Milk Choice – The type of milk you use can change the taste and texture of your drink. Whole milk will give a creamier texture, while almond or oat milk will add its own unique flavors.
- Frothing Milk – If making a hot Kicker, frothing the milk is important for the texture. For ideal frothing, the milk should be warmed/steamed to a temperature between 150°F to 155°F.
- Ice Size – If you want to make an iced version, use large, solid ice cubes. They melt slower and won’t dilute your drink too quickly.
- Adjust to Taste – Everyone’s sweetness and strength preference can vary. Start with the recommended amount of Irish cream syrup and coffee, and then adjust according to your liking. Personally, I love sweet drinks, so adding an ounce or so more of Irish cream brings it to a new level.
- Serve Immediately – Both the iced and hot versions of the Kicker are best enjoyed immediately after creation.
- Clean the Equipment – Ensure your espresso machine, coffee maker, and frother are clean. Coffee oils can build up over time and might impart off-flavors to your drink.
Dutch Bros Kicker Nutrition Facts
1. How Much Caffeine is in Dutch Bros Kicker?
Caffeine content depends on the size of the drink and whether it’s hot, blended, or iced. Values range from:
- Small Hot – 120mg
- Small Iced and Blended – 160mg
- Medium Hot – 160mg
- Medium Iced and Blended – 200mg
- Large Hot – 240mg
- Large Iced and Blended – 320mg
2. How Much Sugar is in Dutch Bros Kicker?
Again, it varies by type and size but ranges from 28 grams in a small iced up to 136 grams in a large blended Kicker.
3. How Many Shots of Espresso are in Dutch Bros Kicker?
You’ll get roughly 2 to 2.5 shots of espresso for each Dutch Bros Kicker.
4. How to Order Dutch Bros Kicker at Starbucks?
To order a Dutch Bros Kicker at Starbucks order a latte to get the espresso and milk base and then ask to add 1 to 2 pumps of Irish cream syrup, 6 to 8 ounces of milk or heavy cream for a richer flavor, and top it with whipped cream.
5. How Much Does Dutch Bros Kicker Cost?
This will vary a bit by location. A small usually costs around $3.00, a medium $3.50, and a large $4.50.
This article was written by Sara. You can learn more about Sara on our About the Team page.