This is the easiest 5 minute copycat recipe for the Starbucks Chocolate Cream Cold Brew! The cold foam uses the classic Starbucks Vanilla Sweet Cream with a bit of chocolate malt powder to make a sweet, silky chocolatey whipped topping for cold brew and iced coffees. Perfect for summertime iced coffees!!
One of the things I really love at Starbucks is their cold foam. It elevates absolutely any cold brew and I've been really happy with the new flavors they've rolled out since releasing the cold foam in 2018!
As a huge sweet tooth and chocolate fan, I was particularly intrigued by the Chocolate Cream Cold Brew but every. single. time I go to the Starbucks near me, they tell me they don't have the dang chocolate malt powder to make it.
The Chocolate Cream Cold Foam uses chocolate malt milk powder, which according to a press release by Starbucks is said to introduce nostalgic summers of chocolate malted milkshakes and the last bits of melted chocolate ice cream.
So, here is a copycat recipe just for you and it could not be easier to make with just 4 ingredients! If you love the adding a cold foam to your summer Starbucks order, you're going to love being able to replicate the Chocolate Cream Cold Brew at home.
What is Cold Foam?
Starbucks serves a luscious cold foam - a chilled foamy dairy-based topping layered on top of it's cold brews. It's typically made with a base of non-fat milk, cream, and vanilla syrup which is then whipped in special high speed blenders. The bit of cold brew and cold foam makes for the perfect sip with their strawless lids.
For cold drinks, the hot foam simply dissipates which is why it is served with hot drinks like lattes and cappuccinos. This is why it makes sense to use a cold foam with a cold drink!
Cold Foam was popularized by Starbucks in the United States in the recent years and has especially become popular for those who love to brew their own coffees at home.
Vanilla Sweet Cream
Plain cold foam doesn't contain any cream to get the velvety texture.
Vanilla sweet cream does! It's simply vanilla syrup, 2% milk, and heavy cream. However, it does not come blended. It's almost the texture of melted vanilla ice cream - thick and incredibly creamy. When you order vanilla sweet cream, it'll be fully mixed into the iced drink.
This vanilla sweet cream is used as a base to make the Chocolate Cream Cold Foam.
Chocolate Cream Cold Foam
According to Starbucks.com nutritional information, Starbucks uses Ice, Brewed Coffee, Chocolate Cream, and Vanilla Syrup to make Chocolate Cream Cold Brew. The Chocolate Cream is specifically made with Vanilla Sweet Cream and Chocolate Malt Powder.
It's then whipped in a cold foam blender and poured on top of cold drinks. The milk slowly starts cascading into the drink while the sweetened, foamy cream sits at the top, making each sip absolute perfection.
Ingredients - Notes and Substitutions
Chocolate Cream Cold Brew is a total of five ingredients.
- Vanilla Syrup - Use any bottled brand of vanilla syrup, i.e. Starbucks, Torani, Monin, etc. It's also really easy to make vanilla syrup at home with vanilla extract, sugar, and water. Mix equal amounts of sugar and water (for this recipe, you only need 35-40ml of vanilla syrup) and about half a teaspoon of high quality vanilla extract.
- Heavy Cream - Use heavy whipping cream or half and half, but heavy whipping cream will whip up the best.
- Milk - Use the milk of your choice, whether it's plant based or not, but 2% milk is the go-to.
- Cold Brew - This can be any cold, iced coffee! It doesn't have to be only cold brew. The cold brew can be homemade or store-bought. Just make sure it's chilled.
- Chocolate Malt Powder - Starbucks uses a chocolate malt powder made of cane sugar, alkalized cocoa powder, natural malt flavor, natural flavors, and sunflower oil. You can either purchase readymade chocolate malt powder, or you can make your own with sugar, dutch process cocoa powder, and malted milk powder.
If you're making your own chocolate malt powder, the key here is to use alkalized cocoa powder, better known as dutch process cocoa powder. You can read about the differences between natural and alkalized on Food52.
To make your own chocolate malt powder for the Starbucks Chocolate Cream Cold Foam, simply mix together 1.5 teaspoon malted milk powder, ½ teaspoon dutch process cocoa powder, and ½ teaspoon sugar.
How to make Chocolate Cream Cold Foam
There are so many vessels to make cold foam in! An electric milk frother, electric handheld mixer, a simple whisk, a blender, a Nespresso Aeroccino, immersion blender, a jar, etc. will all achieve the desired result.
Simply pour the chocolate malt powder, milk, vanilla syrup, and heavy cream into a large jar or bowl and blend, whisk, or froth until it thickens but not to the point where it starts to form soft peaks. The texture should be cloudy, foamy, and silky smooth - just a bit thicker than melted ice cream.
Tips and Tricks
If you're using a whisk, I like to whip the heavy cream first until it gets thick, and then slowly add the milk, vanilla syrup, and chocolate malt powder as I continue to whip. Otherwise, I find that the cream sits on the top while the milk sits at the bottom. If this happens, it'll cascade into the cold brew instead of sitting at the top.
For troubleshooting - If the cold foam isn't whipping, it's either because the whipped cream isn't cold enough or the cream has separated and is chunky at the bottom. Ensure the whipped cream hasn't separated before use or use more whipped cream to get a foam that will sit at the top.
If it gets too thick, add a bit of milk to thin it out. If it's not thick enough, use more heavy cream.
Serving and Storing
Pour the cold brew over ice in a tall glass and add vanilla syrup.
Use about ¼ - ½ cup of cold foam per iced coffee for the perfect ratio. Pour it directly over cold coffee and if it's been thickened enough, it'll sit on the top. If not, continue to whip or add more cold heavy cream. I like to give it a stir so it mixes into the coffee, but a lot of the foam will still sit at the top.
To store it, keep a jar with the heavy cream, milk, vanilla syrup, and chocolate malt powder in the fridge for up to a week or depending on the expiration date of the dairy items.
When ready to use, pour out the desired amount into another cup or jar, and froth until it thickens into the desired consistency.
More Starbucks Recipes to try
Chocolate Cream Cold Brew
- Combine the heavy cream, 2% milk, vanilla syrup, and chocolate malt powder in a mason jar.
- Insert an electric frother into the middle of the jar and froth until the chocolate cream is thick and foamy.
- Pour ice and cold brew into a tall glass. Add a pump (~1 tablespoon) of vanilla syrup and stir together.
- Top the cold brew with ¼ - ½ cup of chocolate cream cold foam.