9 Most Popular Coffee Flavors: From Classics to Seasonal Favorites

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As coffee has grown in popularity, so have the different flavor options. If you walk into any coffee shop, whether independent or commercial, you’ll find an overwhelming number of coffee flavors. Most coffee shops have a signature flavor, and you’ll find a unique variety of options anywhere you go. Similarly, every coffee drinker has their favorite coffee concoction.

Whether you’re new to coffee or a seasoned expert, you might be wondering what coffee flavor to try next. Luckily, we have compiled a list for you of some of the most popular coffee flavors, so this can help you find the best coffee flavor for you!

1. French Vanilla

The most classic of all flavors, French vanilla tops the list of most popular coffee flavors. And, no wonder it’s so popular – it has a naturally sweet taste to counterbalance bitterness from coffee, it’s warm and comforting, and it gives coffee a subtle creaminess. What could go wrong?

To add some vanilla to your coffee, you can use a vanilla-flavored creamer, milk, or extract. Or, if you want to get fancy, you can go ahead and scrape some vanilla beans directly from the pod and onto your coffee beans so that they can infuse overnight.

2. Mocha

No surprises here! It’s basically hot chocolate with coffee in it. This flavor is especially popular with less-experienced coffee drinkers, as it creates a sweet and easy transition into the world of coffee. It also tends to have less caffeine than other coffee flavors.

To make this at home, add some cocoa powder, sugar, and milk to your cup of coffee. For an even easier method, add coffee instead of water to a pack of instant hot cocoa.

3. Hazelnut

The nutty, buttery taste of hazelnut pairs perfectly with the warm, roasty flavor of coffee. Hazelnut has a natural sweetness that plays well with the subtle bitterness of a strong coffee. Plus, the smell of hazelnut coffee is unbeatable.

Hazelnut-flavored coffee beans make a sweet and subtle coffee that can be enjoyed black. You can also add hazelnut-flavored creamer to your favorite cup of coffee. Hazelnut tastes delicious with both vanilla and chocolate flavors, so those can be fun combinations to try, as well.

4. Pumpkin Spice

We can’t talk about popular coffee flavors without including this fall favorite. As soon as September rolls around, every coffee shop in town features its own version of this warm, spicy flavor. It is most usually found in latte-form, either hot or iced. Despite the fact that it has the word “pumpkin” in the name, it does not actually contain any pumpkin – just the spices typically found in pumpkin desserts, like cinnamon and nutmeg.

If you don’t want to make the extra trip to the coffee shop, you can make your own pumpkin spiced latte at home. Combine some milk, sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a saucepan and heat until simmering. If you want to get extra indulgent, run your milk frother through it. Then, pour it into your regular cup of coffee, and you have your own homemade pumpkin spiced coffee drink!

5. Peppermint

This is another seasonal coffee drink that is extremely popular. It usually can be found around the winter holidays. Although peppermint and coffee sound like two flavors that you wouldn’t necessarily think to try together, they create quite a complementary pair.

To make this yourself, you can add a tiny splash of peppermint schnapps, some peppermint simple syrup, or a drop of food-grade peppermint oil to your cup of coffee. For extra creaminess, include your regular milk or cream. Keep in mind that peppermint is a very strong flavor, and a little bit goes a long way!

6. Caramel

Another sweet flavor, caramel rivals mocha in introducing newbies to the world of coffee. But it’s not just novices who can enjoy this flavor, because who doesn’t love caramel? Coffee and caramel were made to pair together.

Besides purchasing some caramel coffee at your local coffee shop, you can make this at home by adding some melted caramel or caramel syrup to your cup of coffee. For some extra indulgence, also include cream or milk. Caramel coffee is absolutely a treat!

7. Butterscotch

Similar to caramel, butterscotch is a sweet flavor that goes hand in hand with coffee. In fact, the only difference between butterscotch and caramel is that caramel is made with granulated sugar while butterscotch is made with brown sugar. Because of this, butterscotch tends to have a deeper, molasses-y flavor.

If you want to make this at home, add some butterscotch syrup to your coffee. You can also include some milk or cream to top it all off–this is another time when a milk frother would come in handy.

8. Highlander Grogg

If you’re new to coffee, you might not have heard of this flavor before. It combines the flavors of vanilla, butterscotch, and whiskey to create quite a delicious flavor sensation. Sometimes other flavors like chocolate, rum, and warm spices are included, as well. 

There are many different infused coffee beans that you can buy to experience these flavors, but there are ways to make it fresh at home–just make sure that you have some butterscotch syrup on-hand. Add a splash of whiskey, a small dash of vanilla, and some butterscotch syrup to your cup of coffee. If you want more depth of flavor, you can also include some cocoa powder and/or cinnamon. Another variation can be made by switching out the whiskey for rum.

9. Amaretto

As you may know, amaretto is an Italian liqueur known for its sweet and syrupy almond flavor. However, there is no alcohol in this coffee drink – just the sweet, toasty almond taste. This is a wonderfully complex and indulgent flavor.

To make this at home, combine sweetened condensed milk and either some amaretto liqueur or almond extract in a saucepan. Cook until the mixture reduces into a thick cream. You can make a big batch of this ahead of time and use it in your coffee whenever the mood strikes you.

Some Dietary Concerns

Most coffee flavorings, whether they are infused directly into the beans or come from flavored creamers, are made with either artificial or natural flavors. If you are trying to avoid these, then be sure to read the labels before buying any flavored coffee. Most of these coffee drinks can be made fairly easily at home without the extra flavorings. However, if these flavorings don’t bother you, then enjoy!

Also, if you’re trying to decrease the sugar in your coffee, be extra cognizant when purchasing flavored coffees. Flavored beans usually don’t have carbs, but some coffee drink flavorings can add quite a bit of sugar. However, sugar-free flavoring alternatives are a growing market, so you have quite a few options.

Keep in mind that if you’re making these drinks at home, you can always opt to use extracts, such as vanilla, almond, and hazelnut. These can help you cut down not only on natural and artificial flavors but also on sugar.

Experiment with Different Coffee Flavors

There are so many options for you to try! You can experiment with any of the flavors we mentioned, or you can stray beyond the most popular flavors and find something off the beaten path. You can even try combining some of the options from our coffee flavors list above.

Coffee is a wonderful drink that is personal to everyone. Just stick to high-quality flavored coffees or coffee flavorings, and you’ll be fine. Have fun with it and enjoy your journey in finding your perfect coffee drink

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