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Homemade Coffee Extract Recipe

Homemade Coffee Extract Recipe


I found this little gem while channel surfing.  PBS came through with an old Julia Child:  Lessons with Master Chefs episode.  I was actually about to move on, because it was a super complicated Viennese Cardinal Slice — not exactly my thing (to make — I’d eat it, but make it?  No.  Never).  But then the Chef, Markus Farbinger, said something about making coffee extract.  Julia was intrigued, I was intrigued.  I hit record on the PVR and sat back to learn something new.


The potential uses for my new bottle of thick, syrupy go-juice are starting to take over part of my brain.  Coffee ice cream, iced coffees, milkshakes, coffee-cream filled eclairs, tiramisu cheesecake, etc.

And the more of those things you make, the more caffeine (and sugar) in your system.  Which, of course, starts the whole cycle all over again — all night coffee-extract brainstorming sessions, followed by planning, making and eating.

I think I’ll make my next batch decaf…and go get on the treadmill.

sugar-pan caramel





  1. Cristina - Teenie Cakes
    November 8, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    I’ve not heard of coffee extract, but what a great idea! How brilliant and that it stores indefinitely. I can think of all kinds of fantastic uses for this. I’d like to give this a try – Thanks for sharing …saving to file :)

  2. fooddreamer
    November 8, 2010 at 3:08 pm

    Ah, now that was the recipe I was waiting for ;)

  3. Steph
    November 8, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    Sounds like something that could turn into a must-have kitchen staple! Looks wonderful and fairly easy to make. I especially liked your bit about the ” just-in-case-you-burn-your-hand-off” tip. :p Could prove useful.

    • Theresa
      November 9, 2010 at 7:11 am

      Yes, hands are always useful — hence the ice water…;)

  4. briarrose
    November 8, 2010 at 4:21 pm

    What a neat idea. So many recipes call for that little hint of coffee.

  5. spice sherpa
    November 9, 2010 at 5:06 am

    Coffee extract! How cool. I’d love to make this and like you am starting to imagine all the goodies doors it opens. :-) And like you, am way too familiar with how caffeine and sugar feed the beast that wants more caffeine and sugar.

    • Theresa
      November 9, 2010 at 7:09 am

      Yup, that`s why I`m seriously considering decaf extract next batch…

  6. Yesim
    November 9, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    never thought to coffee extract homemade:) cool idea;)

  7. RavieNomNoms
    November 10, 2010 at 7:03 am

    This is fabulous! What a great thing to have in your kitchen at all times, thank you so much for this!

  8. Jason Phelps
    November 10, 2010 at 3:45 pm

    I haven’t heard of this either. Seems quite useful.


  9. Tomato in Tribeca
    November 11, 2010 at 5:30 am

    very very cool! never knew you could do that at home. thanks so much for sharing!

  10. Why did Beverly Hillbillies just start going through my head? Black gold…that’s what you have there. I can not WAIT to do this. Thanks for sitting those extra few minutes, seeing that piece and passing this rare gem along.

  11. Cajun Chef Ryan
    November 12, 2010 at 7:05 am

    I am so glad you found that episode on PBS, I miss Julia Child, she will always be one of those rare gems in the culinary world.
    And this coffee extract looks amazing, we always have left over coffee and this is the perfect way to preserve it for future use.

    BTW, I had the fortune of being able to cook with Julia on several occasions back in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s.

    Bon appetit!

    • Theresa
      November 12, 2010 at 7:21 am

      Ryan — you should write a post about your meetings with Julia — I`d love to read it! Theresa

  12. Kristen
    December 3, 2010 at 6:06 am

    This looks delicious. It’s on my “to do” list now. I can’t wait to try it!

    Is there a way to follow your site with google?

    • Theresa
      December 3, 2010 at 5:47 pm

      I’m going to have to figure that google thing out very soon Kristen…;) I’ll let you know when the widget is up…thanks for stopping by! Theresa

  13. briana
    February 27, 2011 at 8:50 am

    i have a strange question: this extract can be used for cosmetic lotions or lipbalms?

    • Theresa
      February 27, 2011 at 11:17 am

      it is edible, so I don’t see why not…it’s very sticky though…Theresa

  14. zxc
    August 2, 2011 at 1:16 am

    1 cup espresso = 240 ml or 30 ml ( single espresso) ??

    • Theresa
      August 2, 2011 at 9:19 am

      By 1 cup espresso, I mean 240 ml…thanks for checking out Island Vittles! Theresa

  15. Ashl
    March 17, 2012 at 11:27 am

    I would keep vinegar close by instead of iced water…

  16. mohsin
    June 9, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    hi theresa . great work.

    i am searching for coffee essence to put in cake. do you have any idea about that.

    i need a long lasting coffee smell.

    plz help me.

    • Theresa
      June 10, 2012 at 11:25 am

      I don’t know…sorry I can’t help you! I suggest asking someone interested in molecular gastronomy…Heston Blumenthal, or maybe Good luck!

  17. David
    November 24, 2012 at 2:26 pm

    makes me toot

  18. Cafe Cup
    April 8, 2013 at 8:39 am

    Thanks for the recipe. There seems to be a lot of stuff you can make out of a good coffee extract. Nice post.

  19. Ron
    August 26, 2013 at 9:35 am

    I hadn’t heard of coffee extract either, until I saw a recipe for “John Elways’s Brownies”. It looked good so I thought I would try it, and found that I needed coffee extract. Hmmm. Onto the internet for some quick research on where to find it. What a surprise…$10 plus for 4 ounces! And, according to many reviews, they can be too bitter or too weak. So, more research when I found your site. It looked simple (and was), and does it ever add flavor to the brownies. Wow! Thank you for sharing this wonderful “secret”.

  20. sharri
    September 24, 2013 at 6:05 am

    So, happy I ran across your site from another! I have been looking for the coffee extract recipe for awhile now, Thank you for sharing and watching the show for a little longer!!!!! my baked goods are going to be terrific now!! keep exploring and sharing . thanks again

  21. gretel schuck
    January 11, 2014 at 7:42 am

    I preheated my no stick pan, dusted the sugar -nothing happened. The heat was on med high to high
    nothing happened, no melting? After 25 minutes I gave up
    Any thoughts?

    • Theresa
      January 14, 2014 at 7:43 pm

      Gretel — I have no idea why it didn’t work…I’ve made this recipe several times, as directed, with no problems. Hmmm.

  22. HJ
    January 31, 2014 at 10:27 am

    Does this stuff seriously not go bad on the shelf?? Without any canning process? This is great!! Thanks for the recipe, I am trying it today!

  23. Randy
    April 26, 2016 at 4:23 pm

    So you ripped off Markus Farbinger’s recipe from PBS and published it here. Then you decided to put it in a cook book you’re selling on Amazon. Has no one explained copyright law to you? There is a difference between “sharing recipes” on the Internet for free and publishing them in a book you’re selling. Making money off of someone else’s work is illegal. And I see you removed the recipe from this site so that people “have to buy the book” to get it. Nope. Google “Markus Farbinger espresso extract” to find a link to the PBS episode.

    • Theresa
      April 26, 2016 at 7:35 pm

      You have no idea what you’re talking about, you pedantic nimrod.

      You can’t see the recipe, so how do you know it’s the same as Mr. Farbinger’s. Inspired by has nothing to do with copyright. A subject about which I know a lot more than you.

      Go back from whence you came, troll. Bye, bye.

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