Best Coffee Syrups: A Guide to Picking Your PoisonCLICK HERE to subscribe to our weekly emails on finding and brewing amazing coffee!
The right syrup added to the right coffee-based drink can take your coffee drinking experience to a whole new level. Just imagine, instead of throwing a boring, old-fashioned cocktail party, you could throw a brewing extravaganza, using coffee syrups and your favorite bean to create unique, custom-crafted brews for your guests.
There’s a lot more to coffee syrups and their applications than you might think. That’s why we’ve created this informative and educational guide, especially for you.
So, let’s get to it.
Here’s our comprehensive guide to coffee syrups, starting with our recommendations for the best coffee syrups on the market.
Our Top 5 Best Coffee Syrups
Based in San Francisco, the Torre family started their business in 1925, using old family syrup recipes to create traditional Italian sodas. So, Torani is credited with creating the world’s first flavored latte. Who knew?
Torani is now one of the top-rated makers of flavored syrups for use in coffee, cocktails, sodas, and cooking. Their original range of five flavors has been expanded to close to 100, so you’ll never be short of choice.
This variety pack includes four classic flavors: caramel, French vanilla, vanilla, and hazelnut.
Torani syrups pack plenty of flavor without being too sweet. For a barista-quality vanilla latte, just put a shot of syrup into your mug, pour over your favorite brew, and top it off with frothed, warmed milk or cream. It’s the perfect way to start your day.
Also, you might want to invest in a Torani Syrup Pump. A pump will help to eliminate any sticky mess on your countertop.
Founded in Seattle in 1989, DaVinci syrups are now sold in specialty food stores and gourmet coffee shops all over the world.
If you like your food all-natural, DaVinci products are the way to go. Only natural ingredients, including real botanical extracts, are used to create a wide range of flavors – no artificial preservatives or flavors here, thank you.
We particularly like DaVinci’s Hawaiian Salted Caramel flavor syrup. The syrup is made using Hawaiian sea salt, and the real caramel flavor comes from pure, natural cane sugar.
So, no more standing in lines in your local coffee shop; you can create a delicious, barista-quality salted caramel coffee in the comfort of your kitchen, whenever you want one.
Monin is a French company that produces syrups and liqueurs. Their organic flavored syrups are of premium quality, use only all-natural ingredients, and contain no artificial colors.
Monin’s flavor range is comprehensive and contains some unusual ones that you might fancy trying for something a little more avant-garde than the run-of-the-mill flavors that you find in your local coffee shop. For example, check out their lavender syrup; although the color is slightly alarming, the taste is fantastic!
This kit of four, 1.75 fl oz bottles includes caramel, amaretto, toasted hazelnut, Irish cream, and vanilla.
For something a little more festive, the Holiday Cheer selection is well worth trying too. This collection of five 1.75 fl oz bottles includes holiday flavors, including peppermint, salted caramel, cinnamon, pumpkin spice, and gingerbread- yum!
A recipe card is included with the kit to get you started until your creative vibe gets going.
Monin syrups are suitable for vegans, GMO, gluten, and dairy-free, and kosher too. They also have a sugar-free options that taste just as good.
The high-end Ghirardelli Company began with a young Italian chocolatier in the early 1800s and is now a widely recognized brand that’s associated with fine, rich chocolate flavors.
Today, Ghirardelli is America’s oldest continuously operating chocolate maker. Ghirardelli also has its own chocolate and ice cream shops across the country.
This variety pack of convenient squeeze bottles contains one 16 oz bottle of chocolate sauce, one 17 oz bottle of caramel sauce, and one 17 oz bottle of white chocolate sauce.
These sauces are specifically formulated for use in espresso-based drinks. They’re also delicious in hot chocolate or on top of your desserts, which is why you’ll probably recognize them from you local ice cream shop.
Now, just because you may be watching your calorie and sugar intake, doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on syrup-enhanced coffee beverages. Many of the top brands we’ve already mentioned include sugar-free options that taste just as good as the “full-fat” version.
However, for our health-conscious readers, we particularly like USA manufacturer, Jordan’s Skinny Syrups range. The flavors are to die for, and you don’t get that cloying, saccharin after-burn that some people hate.
All the syrups included in the range are gluten-free and kosher. Despite tasting delicious, the syrups have no sugar, carbs, or calories to ruin your diet.
It’s also worth noting that Jordan’s 750ml bottles are compatible with most syrup pumps.
All flavored syrups are not created equal
There are lots of flavored syrup products out there, but they’re not all suitable for use with coffee. That’s why we’ve taken time out to review the best for you.
Flavored syrups generally contain a simple syrup, i.e., sugar or a sugar substitute mixed with water and heated until all the sugar has dissolved, with added flavorings. Therefore, the final formulation will dictate whether the product is suitable for use with coffee, in cooking, or in cold drinks only.
So, if you decide to go off-piste and source flavored syrups yourself, you’ll need to be sure that you’re buying the right stuff.
|Okay||Not Okay||Check the Label|
|Coffee-flavoring syrup||Mixed-drink syrup||Cooking syrup|
|Agave syrup||Concentrates||Dessert sauce|
…are formulated specifically for use in coffee-based drinks. They contain just the right amount of sugar or sweetener to give your coffee a sweet taste without overpowering the flavor of the syrup or the coffee.
…is renowned for its delicate sweetness and subtle hint of caramel flavor. You can use agave syrup in coffee-based beverages, and it will enhance the flavor of the coffee with a little bit of sweetness, without being overpowering.
…are typically fruit flavored and are designed for use in cocktails and other cold drinks.
…are essentially flavorings that already contain caffeine and are not suitable for mixing with coffee (think serious jitters and massive coffee flavor hit).
…are intended for use in marinades and sauces as a sweetening and flavoring agent.
…are hit or-miss. The Ghirardelli selection we’ve featured in our product review guide above, works well when used to flavor coffee-based drinks.
Side Note: Sweetening syrups should not be confused with flavoring syrups. These products are purely liquid sweeteners, which are usually used in desserts and some cold drinks. However, you could use them to sweeten coffee in the absence of regular sugar, but they won’t add much depth to the flavor.
Can a flavored coffee be healthy?
If you’re a health nut or if you just want to enjoy the sweet taste of coffee syrup without the calorific content, you’ll be pleased to hear that you can!
You can recreate all your favorite coffee house drinks using sugar-free syrups. Most of the big-flavored syrup names include a range of no-sugar products in their catalog. Look out for the words, “Sugar-Free” on the label and a blue-colored bottle label or cap.
Additionally, these syrups are made using a no-calorie sweetener, and each pump of syrup is equal to one packet of sweetener.
They’re also usually gluten-free, making them suitable for those with gluten allergies. To be sure, double-check on the product label for a blue or green gluten-free symbol (either the letters GF in a circle or grain in a crossed circle).
What drinks can you make?
Now that we’ve established what flavored syrups are, you’ll need to know what drinks you can make with them.
Well, coffee fan, the world is your proverbial cup overflows in regard to what coffee-based beverages you can create using flavored syrups.
Here are a couple of our favorites to get you started:
This recipe covers the basic method for making any syrup-flavored latte. Just substitute the flavored syrups for one (or indeed a few) of your choice, and omit the whipped cream in favor of foamed milk if you prefer.
- ¼ oz expresso flavored syrup
- ¾ oz dark chocolate sauce
- Half ounce Irish cream syrup
- 2 shots espresso
- Whipped cream to garnish (optional)
- 10 fl oz milk
- 14 oz serving glass
- Combine all the ingredients (except the milk) together in the serving glass
- Then, using your espresso machine, steam the milk in a pitcher
- Pour the steamed milk over the mixture in the serving glass, stirring gently to combine everything thoroughly
- Add whipped cream to garnish
Sugar-Free Iced Vanilla Hazelnut Latte
On a hot summer’s day, there’s nothing quite as welcome as a delicious, iced latte. It’s really simple to sex-up your drink by adding your favorite flavored syrup. And keep your pleasure guilt-free by using a sugar-free version. Enjoy.
- ¾ oz sugar-free hazelnut syrup
- 4 oz half/half milk and water
- 2 oz espresso
- ¼ oz sugar-free vanilla syrup
- Sugar-free whipped cream to garnish (optional)
- 14 oz serving glass
- Mixing beaker (a cocktail shaker will do fine for this)
- Fill your glass with ice
- Pour the ingredients into the mixing beaker in the order listed above.
- Add some ice from the serving glass
- Cap the beaker, shake well and pour the mixture back into the serving glass
- Add the garnish if desired and serve
So, there you have it, the full low-down on coffee syrups.
Of the syrups we reviewed, DaVinci gets our vote. They have a really impressive range of flavors, the quality is great, and they use all-natural ingredients with no added chemicals. And they do a sugar-free range too.
Happy (syrup-flavored) caffeinating!
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