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Recently, we started to share a lot of our favorite Korean drinks we make at home on our blog. Some of these drinks are perfect for those who enjoy a really good cocktail. On the other hand, we also wrote about recipes that are perfect for those who enjoy making drinks for their hip home cafes. As such, we wanted to compile a comprehensive list of some of our favorite Korean drinks that we make and enjoy in our home!
On our list, we split the different Korean drinks into three categories: alcohol, coffee, and specialty drinks. Let us know which of these is your favorite option to make at home! So, let’s get started!
10 Drinks to Make at Home
Korean Drinks: Alcohol
In Korea, going out for drinks is a huge part of their social culture. Below we listed some soju cocktail recipes as well as some recipes for traditional Korean alcoholic drinks!
1. Soju and Tonic
Have you ever heard of Soju? Soju, a colorless and slightly sweet spirit from Korea, has been the staple of Korean food and culture for hundreds of years. Though people traditionally drink this liquor as a shot, soju cocktails have started trending as a delicious alternative. Soju and Tonic is an easy, light, and refreshing soju cocktail recipe you can make in less than 5 minutes! You only need three ingredients: soju, tonic water, and your garnish (we use limes). Because it refreshingly hits the spot, soju and tonic is the perfect recipe for the spring and summer months!
2. Soju Caipirinha
Another light and refreshing soju cocktail recipe to try in the spring and summer is the soju caipirinha. This alcoholic beverage is based on the Brazilian national drink: the caipirinha. Traditionally, you make the Brazilian caipirinha with cachaça, sugar, and lime. For our recipe, we replaced the cachaça with soju. We hope you enjoy our Korean twist on this famous Brazilian cocktail!
Makgeolli is a traditional Korean alcoholic beverage. Typically, makgeolli has a milky, off-white color. The drink has a slightly sweet, bitter, and tangy flavor that also tastes a bit earthy. Often, people drink makgeolli on a rainy day when eating jeon (Korean pancake). It is also enjoyed after long hikes in the countryside.
For a delicious makgeolli recipe, try making Jinjoo’s recipe from Kimchimari! Also, for further information about the traditional Korean drink, check out her makgeolli guide for flavor and taste!
4. Subak Soju
Subak means watermelon in the Korean language! During the hot summer months, when watermelon is in season, people love drinking subak soju to beat the heat. To make this recipe, you only need three ingredients: soju, watermelon, and Sprite. After blending the soju and watermelon, you add in the bubbly Sprite!
Often, you will find people enjoying this large-batch drink during barbecue cookouts and camping with friends. For this recipe, we recommend checking out Seonkyoung’s blog Seonkyoung Longest. Soon you will be making the PERFECT drink for really hot summer heat. We recommend drinking with a straw!
Korean Drinks: Coffee
Coffee culture is HUGE amongst the younger generations. Walk along the streets of any major city in South Korea, and there will be a coffee shop on every block. Just note, coffee shops often open later in South Korea, but they often stay open later as well. People go to coffee shops to socialize, not to get heavily caffeinated to start their day! Below we listed two of our Korean coffee recipes for you to enjoy.
5. Dalgona Coffee
Dalgona coffee is a creamy, slightly sweet, and rich drink made by whipping together instant coffee, hot water, and sugar. Typically, you serve the whipped mixture in a glass with ice and milk! Dalgona coffee started as a viral online trend during the beginning of the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic. People in Korea were so bored, that they started whipping this drink by hand and sharing it online. Soon, the trend spread throughout the world!
Check out our recipe below!
6. Burnt Brown Sugar Latte
Another popular drink in Korean cafes is the ‘burnt brown sugar’ iced latte. First, it is important to note that the brown sugar isn’t actually burnt. Instead, you caramelize the brown sugar until it becomes rich like molasses.
Many of these coffee beverages on Instagram may seem daunting to make. While some do take time to learn, our iced brown sugar latte isn’t hard to make at all! All you need to make this drink is espresso, milk, and homemade burnt brown sugar syrup!
You can find our recipe in the links below.
Korean Drinks: Specialty Drinks
Finally, Korean cafes also excel in making specialty drinks! While none of these drinks contain coffee, they are often served at cute boutique cafes. These drinks are beautiful, delicious, and trendy on Instagram.
7. Strawberry Milk
Korean strawberry milk is made using fresh strawberries, sugar, and milk. To make this drink, you start by making a delicious strawberry syrup with fresh strawberries and sugar. Once cooled, you combine the syrup and milk to make a beautiful and delicious drink! We recommend enjoying this creamy and light drink during the warm spring and summer months as a light and refreshing dessert! Also, try topping it with fresh strawberries and homemade whipped cream!
8. Sweet Potato Latte
In South Korea, they often refer to specialty drinks containing milk as a ‘latte’ even if it doesn’t have coffee or espresso in them. The sweet potato latte is no exception. While it doesn’t contain any coffee, it is the ultimate sweet treat to warm your body during the cold fall and winter months!
For this recipe, we recommend checking out the blog Cookerru! She also often makes beautiful trendy Korean drinks you may enjoy such as her dalgona matcha latte!
9. Banana Milk
In Korea, banana milk is a beloved drink often drunk when snacking. People love it so much, that we added it to our list of best Korean snacks to buy online or make at home!
Banana milk is a sweet treat loved by everyone from young children up to the elderly in South Korea. The drink is so popular that the company that produces the drink sells approximately 800,000 bottles a day! If you would like to make your own using natural ingredients, we recommend trying Sue’s recipe from her blog My Korean Kitchen. She uses real bananas instead of artificial banana flavoring!
10. Citron Tea
Popular in South Korea and Japan, you make Citron tea using sugar and yuzu citrus. Once combined, the sugar naturally melts down and infuses with the yuzu. Eventually, it turns into a jam-like mixture that dissolves when mixed with water.
For those who do not know, yuzu is a type of citrus that falls between a lemon and mandarin orange. Unfortunately, you will not find this fruit in North America. Yuzu is actually illegal to grown or sell fresh in the U.S. Apparently, yuzu trees carry different types of diseases that can wipe out native American trees. If you somehow manage to get your hand on fresh fruit, definitely make this drink! Otherwise, you can buy the tea in many stores.
Finally, if you are in a country that allows fresh yuzu, we recommend using Shihoko’s recipe from her blog Chopstick Chronicles!
Which Is Your Favorite?
In the end, did you enjoy drinking different Korean drinks? If so, let us know which is your favorite! Also, we would love to hear of any recommendations in the comment section!
If you would like to read more articles listing different types of Korean food, check out the ones below. Also, we listed some of our other Korean recipes you may enjoy!
Lists of Korean Food:
Korean Food and Drink Recipes:
- Mayak Eggs (Korean Marinated Eggs)
- Maneul Jangajji (Korean Pickled Garlic)
- Romaine Sangchu Geotjeori (Korean Romaine Lettuce Salad)
- Soju and Tonic (A Korean Soju Cocktail)
- Soju Caipirinha (A Korean Take on Brazil’s National Drink); and
- Korean Barbecue Dipping Sauces
If you have any questions or comments, you can also email us at [email protected].
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