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I’m not sure how I came up with the name Shakerino for this drink. It may have been a goof when I mixed up the Italian name, and concept of the drink. But this Shakerino is sort of dyslexian (or dystopian, if you’re an authenticarian – another word I made up) riff off the Italian Shakerato, a caffè drink made by shaking espresso and sugar syrup to a froth with ice.

I revisited it recently when I was cleaning out files on my computer and came across this recipe that I developed so long ago that my word processing program was struggling to find a compatible program or method to open it with. But I shook one up and after that first sip, I remembered why I liked it so much. In fact, I didn’t remember how good it was! (If that makes sense.)

There are a number of recipes online to make your own Irish cream liqueur, but if I made everything that could be made from scratch, I wouldn’t have time to share recipes with you. My friend Deb has an Irish Cream Liqueur recipe and some have told me that Buffalo Trace makes a wonderful bourbon-cream liqueur, that I haven’t yet tried. (If I tried all the liquor I wanted to try, I’d be too soused to share recipes as well.) I think you could swap out coffee liqueur, such as Kahluà or amaretto mixed with some whiskey, and I’m sure there are other spirits out there that would work as well, although the Irish cream liqueur hits exactly the right notes for me. I was happy to have sprung for a bottle, since I’ve made them a few times this past week, and will definitely make a few more before summer is over.

If you’re wondering what else you can do with that bottle of Irish cream liqueur, I came up with a chocolate-banana “no churn” ice cream, before everyone decided that they didn’t want to churn ice cream anymore. (It’s funny that that ice creams that you don’t have to churn, and bread that you don’t have to knead, have become so popular based on less-work, while so many others are into DIYing whatever they can.) But so be it. This Shakerino is easy to shake up and goes down especially smoothly.

Irish Cream Iced Shakerino

Although I usually use vanilla ice cream to make this, it would work with any other flavor of ice cream that suits your fancy. You can use espresso from a moka pot or from a machine. If you have neither, use instant espresso powder (or instant coffee, adding extra crystals so it's espresso-strength) for the liquid espresso. This recipe can be doubled (and perhaps tripled) in a standard cocktail shaker, but if you want to make Shakerinos (or Shakerini?) for a crowd, you could pulse the ingredients together in a standard blender just enough so everything is well-chilled and the ice is partially crushed (as it would be in a shaker), but not enough so it's liquified, which will dilute the drink.
Servings 1 drink
  • 2 ounces Irish cream liqueur
  • 1 scoop vanilla ice cream
  • 1 1/2 ounces liquid espresso, slightly cooled
  • cocoa powder, for garnish (optional)
  • Put the Irish cream liqueur, vanilla ice cream, and espresso in a cocktail shaker.
  • Fill halfway with ice, cover, and shake vigorously until the mixture is very cold, about 20 to 30 seconds. Strain into a cocktail glass. Dust with a little cocoa powder, if desired.


    • gail willens

    In Northern Michigan we have a very similar drink(the signature drink at a local restaurant made for a large group of physicians holiday gathering!)…it’s called a HUMMER! When you taste it, you say “HMMMMMMMM….” Delicious, delicious!

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Ha! I had to look it up and found the Hummer, which is somewhat similar, although no espresso (but coffee liqueur instead)

    • wildbill

    Is this a beginning drink, an after the meal drink or an anytime, anywhere drink? As I write the question I realize, for me it’s an anytimer which means I’m having this for breakfast. Thanks for the recipe!

    • Linda Uhrig

    I made it two weeks ago and it us delish! Everyone loved it!!

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Happy it was a hit!

    • jane

    Reminds me a bit of a frozen Dalgona coffee but with the liquor, better!

    • Louise Oppedahl

    If I don’t have Irish Creme Liqueur, what other liqueur might you suggest? Orange?

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Hi Louise: I mention “…you could swap out coffee liqueur, such as Kahluà or amaretto mixed with some whiskey” but if you have another liqueur (such as Frangelico or Amarula) you could use it mixed with a little whiskey to give it a little boost to stand up to the espresso. If you try something else, let us know how it turns out!

    • Alison mcqusde

    Will give it a bash – sounds lovely and rich! I do recommend the bourbon trace cream liqueur….

    • Annie Green

    For this, I would step down from my stance of Only Bitter Cocktails For Me, Thanks. All my favourite flavours.

    • Naomi D.

    Well, I will warn against one coffee flavor, which goes down way too smoothly – coffee tequila. I’m sure it would be delicious, but drink slowly and only have one!

    • Gavrielle

    David, please keep making up words at will, as you made my day. Pondering swapping the ice for milk to make a Milkshakerino (or more realistically several Milkshakerini).

    • Andrea S

    We made this after being in the pool with 90+ temps. I used moose tracks frozen yogurt and Kahlua salted caramel liquor since it’s what we had (thanks corona). Super yummy! Thank goodness it’s a reasonable serving size, because we both could have drank ALOT more. Thank you for continuing your blog and IG apero hour videos!!!

    • Linda Isenson

    Well, this sounds delightful and dangerous. I think I’ll be shaking these up for brunch this weekend. Although, I do think day drinking is woefully under-rated, I do have to get some work done! Thanks for a great recipe and an entertaining post! L’Chaim

    • Cynthia Gibson

    Love anything with coffee, but I beg you we need an excellent recipe for a spicy cucumber margherita for these sweltering hot French days! 100 today in Uzes. Xxoo Mrs. Gibson

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      Add some mezcal to this cucumber cooler (proportions are at the end of the recipe) or use the spicy tequila from Drinking French, if you have a copy.

    • Verity

    I was hoping to find that you had a recipe for an Irish cream ice cream, but thought maybe I could add it to your lovely vanilla Ice cream recipe instead! Do you think half a cup of Irish cream would make the ingredient proportions completely out of whack?

      • David
      David Lebovitz

      You could certainly try it. It might make it rather soft, so I’d reduce the sugar maybe by 25%-30% since Bailey’s is sweetened (and has alcohol, which also inhibits freezing), but I can’t say for sure without trying it. If you do try it, let us know how it turns out!


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