Mexican Coffee Recipe

cafe de olla mexico
how to make mexican coffee

What kind of coffee is served in Mexico?

We get this question very often. Some spices and sweetness add a unique touch to this traditional coffeeĀ drink in Mexico. If you have tried Cafe de Olla is almost pretty sure you liked it.

First things first: What is cafe de olla?

It is the most popular Mexican hot coffee recipe, the grandmothers prepared it in a clay pot and it is served inĀ mugs of the same material. It has a light touch of spices and here we will teach you how to prepare it.


  • 6 tablespoons of medium ground coffee
  • 2 cinnamon sticks, this is the main ingredient!
  • 2 cloves
  • 1/2 orange peel without the white part (optional)
  • 1 piloncillo cone of 45 g also called panela
  • 1.5 liters of water

piloncillo cone from mexico

Piloncillo, you can get it at any Latino store


  1. Add the water to a clay pot or saucepan with the piloncillo, cinnamon, orange peel and cloves over medium heat.
  2. As soon as it boils, turns off the heat, add the coffee, and brew for four minutes.
  3. Pass through a strainer and serve in your mug.

Note: To avoid undesired flavors like bitterness or the spices taking over the coffee flavor don't brew the coffee for more than four minutes.

A little history of Cafe de Olla from Mexico:

It is said that it was during the Mexican Revolution that this Mexican coffee drink "Cafe de Olla" emerged, thanks to the adelitas (soldiers wives) who added piloncillo and cinnamon to the basic preparation of coffee and prepared it every night to give energy to all the warriors who were in the fight.

It was named Cafe de Olla because from the beginning it was prepared in clay pots (ā€œOllaā€ means pot in Spanish) and later, according to tradition, it should be offered in cups of this same material.

You might find some coffee bags labeled as "Mexican coffee" and that can mean two things: either is already ground with cinnamon and spices ready to prepare cafe de olla or Mexican Coffee as the origin of coffee.


  • This is the most common version of Cafe de Olla, although sometimes you will find it with a little anise.
  • When you buy piloncillo make sure it is the pure version, as today there are many brands that offer cone-shaped sugar but do not have the flavor or nutrients of piloncillo. In case you cannot find it around your area you can replace it with brown sugar.
  • To break the piloncillo easily, heat it a little first, either by placing it near the stove or the oven; this causes the piloncillo to soften.
  • Optional ingredient: If you want to add some liqueur, KahlĆŗa is a very good option or tequila, why not!

Enjoy this hot Mexican coffee drink, salud!