Dirty Horchata

By Timo Torner / Last updated on March 20, 2023

With the help of Rum and coffee liqueur, you can turn a traditional Latin American refreshment into a delicious, boozy summer treat - the Dirty Horchata.
Dirty Horchata Cocktail

Horchata, the base for this Dirty Horchata cocktail, is famous all over Latin America. It is a sweet cinnamon drink based on rice - no alcohol involved. So how did it make its way on a blog about spirits? 

A few years ago, the so-called Dirty Horchata was trending. And to make it, a shot of cold brew or espresso was added to the sweet Horchata. 

Served on ice, this is one delicious iced coffee drink. But there are also other ways to make a Horchata "dirty": adding Rum or coffee liqueur like Kahlua makes delicious boozy alternatives. 

What is Horchata?

Originating in Valencia, Spanish Horchata is a beautifully refreshing drink. It is highly energetic and diuretic, which makes it a perfect drink for hot summer days. 

From Spain, the recipe made its way to Latin America. While Horchata is famous throughout Latin America, it seems especially popular in Mexico.

There it gained vast popularity as an "agua fresca"(translates to "fresh waters"), a widespread refreshment drink.


Based on rice and sweetened with condensed milk, Horchata is spiced with nutmeg and cinnamon

Although you can find many variations in different countries containing vanilla, almonds, and even dried flowers, the classic milk and rice combination is still the most common.

How to make Horchata

Making Horchata at home takes a little more time to mix than other refreshments might take, but it is not very complicated. 

All you need is some long-grain rice, sweetened condensed milk, nutmeg, cinnamon, and milk. Take a bowl and add 1 cup of rice with 1 1/4 cups of water and let it soak for at least 8 hours at room temperature.

Pour the rice into a blender for a couple of minutes until it's finely grounded. Now, add 1/4 cup condensed milk, 1.5 tsp nutmeg, and 1.5 tsp of cinnamon, and blend again. 

Finally, add 4 cups of milk before it is ready to be served. Voila, your homemade Horchata is ready and set to get dirty.

The Dirty Horchata 

This summer treat popped up during the last years in coffee shops across the US, from New York to Los Angeles. 

The standard way to make a dirty Horchata is by adding coffee. Usually, cold brew, but espresso is also a common option. 

Imagine the sweet taste of cinnamon and milk mixed with just the right amount of bitter coffee flavors - served on heaps of ice. It is the perfect iced coffee for a hot day.

Dirty Horchata Cocktail

But occasionally, you need more than just coffee. So by adding the right amount of booze, we get an even dirtier version, a double dirty Horchata cocktail

For this, I like to use a combination of Kahlua and dark Rum. Half an ounce each is enough and will make it extra filthy, lifting your Horchata to new heights. If you're not a fan of Rum, you can also go for a full oz of Kahlua.

Making your own Horchata is a time-consuming process. However, it is worth the effort. Alternatively, you can buy Horchata online, or some may find it in their local supermarket.

Turning that into a cocktail makes for a perfect afternoon caffeine push with just enough alcohol to make it fun without knocking you out.

Dirty Horchata Cocktail

Dirty Horchata Cocktail

A delicious iced coffee cocktail for hot summer days.
Prep Time: 3 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: coffee
Servings: 1
Calories: 137kcal
Cost: $1.35


  • 1 Jigger


  • 4 oz Horchata
  • 1.5 oz Chilled espresso
  • 0.5 oz Dark Rum
  • 0.5 oz Kahlua coffee liqueur


  • Take a large glass and fill it with ice.
  • Pour in the Horchata over the ice, followed by the chilled espresso. Pour the espresso with the help of a spoon to keep the layers from mixing.
  • Finally, add the Rum and Kahlua, also with the help of a spoon. Done.


Serving: 6.5ozCalories: 137kcalCarbohydrates: 23.2gProtein: 0.75gFat: 0.9gSodium: 19.5mgPotassium: 70.5mgSugar: 19.2gCalcium: 25mgIron: 0.02mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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