What is a Mocha Coffee?

A mocha coffee (aka Cafe Mocha) is a sweet coffee made with a combination of chocolate , steamed milk and espresso.

Mocha coffee is pretty much a staple of any coffee-serving establishment in the United States. It seems that people can’t seem to get enough of this chocolate coffee drink. We don’t blame them either. Mocha is pretty much a combination of two rather tasty food items.

So, what is a mocha coffee? Is it something that you can make in the comfort of your own home? If so, how can you make it? Well, all of those questions are going to be answered right here on this page!

Why is it called Mocha Coffee?

Now, mocha coffee is a name given to a couple of different types of coffee. We are only going to be focusing on one of them on this page, but we want to point out both definitions of the word. After all, we know that you are here to learn as much as you can about the exciting world of coffee!

For a long time, mocha coffee was the term used for any coffee made from beans that were grown in Al-Makha, Yemen. While Yemen is no longer a huge coffee producer, you may still find some of their coffee beans being sold as ‘mocha coffee’. However, we can assure you that if you head to a coffee shop in most countries around the world and buy a mocha, you won’t be getting a coffee made from these beans. You will be getting the second definition of the word.

The most common usage of ‘mocha coffee’ nowadays is for a drink known as Caffe Mocha. This is an espresso and milk-based drink that has had chocolate added as a sweetener. So, essentially, the bitterness of the coffee is broken up a little bit by the sweetness of the chocolate.

When it comes to the history of the modern mocha coffee, we can only guess. All we know that it was developed at some point before the end of the 19th Century. This is because the delicious combination of chocolate and coffee began to appear in American recipe books (Betty Crocker, specifically) at the tail end of the 1800s.

It is commonly accepted that the original coffee and chocolate mix was developed in Italy. Many people seem to believe that the coffees coming out of Yemen at the time would have had small hints of a chocolate taste to them. Therefore, somebody may have enjoyed that taste of chocolate and tried to make it much more prominent in the drink.

However, that is going to be mere speculation at this point. Nobody really knows the true origins of modern mocha coffee, and it is unlikely that we will ever know. After all, there was no need for anybody to write the recipe down. It is a dead-simple concoction. The recipe could just be passed from family member to family member.

How to Make a Mocha Coffee

Every coffee shop will make their mocha coffee in a slightly different way. They use different ingredients. They use different methods for adding chocolate into the mixture, etc. The end result is always going to be the same, though. You end up with a chocolate drink with an espresso shot added.

You don’t need all of the fancy equipment and skills that these baristas have to produce a mocha coffee, though. In fact, this is a drink that can be prepared in the comfort of your own home.

We are going to give you two recipes for making a mocha coffee. The first recipe is going to be the simplest method. It is not going to result in the best tasting mocha coffee in the world, but it is still going to produce a decent drink in a pinch. The second recipe is a little bit more convoluted but, even then, you can make the mocha coffee with minimal equipment and ingredients.

What is a Basic Recipe for Making a Mocha Coffee?

When I say that this is a basic mocha coffee recipe, I really do mean it. Coffee purists may want to turn away now. However, as we said, at the end of the day, a mocha coffee is really just chocolate, milk, and espresso combo. Many people don’t want to use fancy flavorings or coffee-making techniques. They just want something nice and simple.

For this recipe, all you need is this:

  • A mug of hot chocolate drink (made with milk)
  • A shot or two of espresso

You probably don’t need us to explain how to make this work. It should be fairly self-explanatory. Just get your typical hot chocolate drink (you know the type of thing that we used to drink as kids during the cold, winter months) and add a shot of espresso to it. Congratulations, you now have mocha coffee. Not a great-tasting mocha coffee, but still a mocha.

What is the Coffee Shop Recipe for a Mocha Coffee?

Our second mocha recipe is going to be a little bit closer to the mocha that you may be able to purchase in a normal coffee shop.

For this recipe, we are under the assumption that you have a coffee machine that is capable of making espresso. If you don’t, then you can substitute the espresso shots for a strong, black coffee. However, do bear in mind that it is not going to taste exactly the same.

For this recipe, you will need:

  • 2 shots of espresso
  • 2 tablespoons of your favorite chocolate syrup
  • Steamed milk
  • You favorite Coffee Mug

Any chocolate syrup should be fine. However, try to buy the best one that you can afford. Try to avoid any chocolate syrups that have extra flavoring in them. Some people choose a chocolate syrup that has vanilla extract and find that this really adds to the taste of the mocha. However, this isn’t a true mocha.

Alternatively, if you want to get really ‘fancy’ with your mocha making, you can use chocolate shavings instead of chocolate syrup. You should use around 3 tablespoons of chocolate shavings if you are planning on going down that route.

Once your ingredients are assembled, making the actual mocha is easy:

Step 1 Add the chocolate syrup to your coffee mug

Step 2 Brew the espresso shots into the coffee mug with the chocolate

Step 3 Mix the espresso and chocolate together

Step 4 Add the steamed milk or milk substitute on top.

Step 5 Sip and Enjoy

Some people may also choose to add whipped cream on top of it all. Although this is more the ‘Starbucks’ version of mocha than a true mocha.

You can experiment with the amount of chocolate syrup and espresso you add to the mixture. Add more chocolate syrup if you want your mocha to be sweeter, for instance.

Final Thoughts

The mocha is going to be one of the most common coffee types that you encounter. Any coffee shop will have it on offer. Despite it being a rather simple drink mixture, each coffee shop will have its own unique way of creating it.

Therefore, I encourage you to try out this drink in as many places as possible. You will be surprised at how much the type of chocolate used, or even the coffee used, can completely shake up the flavor of this wonderful drink.