How To Make Coffee Thicker (The 5 Ways)

Last Updated on May 13, 2022 by John Moretti

Coffee is among the most popular beverages internationally. This drink comes in many various forms, and new coffee drinks are being developed and refined every day. However, what if you want to make your coffee thicker? What if you want a thick beverage for creating an exotic drink variation or if you want to use it in a recipe? How do you make coffee thicker?

Coffee can be made thicker by brewing high-ratio ristretto, high-ratio immersion brews, adding unsweetened condensed milk, using heavy cream, or adding a thickener such as xanthan gum to the coffee. Xanthan gum will thicken coffee more than any other substance without altering its flavor. 

There are several ways to make coffee thicker, including the way it is brewed and ingredients that can be added to coffee drinks to drastically thicken the beverage. However, some ways of thickening coffee work better than others, and there are only a handful of methods that thicken coffee without detracting from its taste. Let’s learn how to thicken coffee without ruining it. 

5 Ways To Make Coffee Thicker

If you need your coffee or your coffee drink to be thicker for whatever reason, there are several ways to make it happen. Coffee can be brewed in a way that makes it inherently thicker, ingredients can be added to coffee drinks to add thickness, and thickening agents can be added to coffee, thickening it drastically. 

Every method adds thickness to coffee at charging degrees and so should be used depending on how thick you want the coffee to be. These are the best ways to thicken coffee without detracting from the beverage. 

1. Brew Strong Ristretto


Not everyone is aware that there are multiple ways to brew espresso. Standard espresso that everyone is familiar with is brewed at a ratio of 1:2, having one part coffee and two parts water. However, this is the strongest method of brewing espresso known as ristretto.

Ristretto is brewed with a 1:1 ratio of coffee and water, and this ratio produces a very thick but very small shot of very strong coffee. The coffee is thicker when brewed with this ratio due to the amount of dissolved coffee within the water, making the drink thicker than it would be with more water. 

Brewing ristretto is a great way to get thick coffee that is not too thick, is very clean, and is very intense and strong tasting. This method will not produce very thick coffee, but significantly thicker than just simple pour-over or drip brewing, and much thicker than other espresso brewing methods.

2. Immersion Brew With A High Ratio

immersion brew

Another way to make coffee thicker in the brewing process is to use a very high ratio immersion brewing method. 

Immersion coffee brewing is brewing with a method that allows all of the ground coffee to be in contact with all of the brewing water for the duration of the entire brew. This coffee is brewed while immersed in water. 

Immersion brewing methods extract the soluble material from coffee very effectively, including all of the oils and very fine particles from the coffee beans. If this method is used with a. Very high ratio of coffee to water, the resultant liquid can be very thick. 

Using a brewer such as a French press is the best way to achieve this type of brew and maintain the integrity of the coffee. Try brewing a very strong French press of coffee and straining the liquid with a very fine sieve. This will produce extra thick coffee direct from this brew.

3. Use Condensed Milk

condensed milk

Making coffee thicker in the brewing process is effective, but it will not make the coffee very thick compared to the possible additives that can achieve much more thickness in the beverage. These ingredients must be added after the brew, but they will be more effective for thickening the drink than brewing thicker coffee. 

If you are preparing a coffee drink that uses milk as part of the recipe, an excellent way to add some thickness to the drink is by using condensed milk. Unsweetened condensed milk will not add any more sweetness to the drink, but it is significantly thicker than regular milk. 

Using condensed milk in conjunction with regular milk will allow for the creation of a thick version of coffee and milk drinks of every kind. 

If you enjoy the flavor of condensed milk, then using only condensed milk with thick-brewed coffee from an immersion brewer will result in a very thick beverage that tastes very similar to regular coffee, only stronger, thicker, and more intense. 

4. Use Heavy Cream

heavy cream

Another effective way to make a coffee and milk beverage thicker is to use heavy cream as part of the drink. This is best when used in conjunction with regular milk and will add a lot of texture, fat, and thickness to any coffee beverage. 

Using heavy cream is ideal for drinks that are heavily sweetened and flavored, as the flavor of heavy cream and coffee can be very rich and overpowering if it is not cut with significant sweetness or other flavors. 

As with the methods mentioned before, using heavy cream is a way to make coffee thicker, but it will only provide a limited amount of thickness. However, using heavy cream will produce thick coffee without having to add any thickening agents. 

5. Add A Thickening Agent

xanthan gum

The final and most effective method for thickening coffee on this list is to add a thickening agent to the beverage. This is the only way to make coffee truly thick, even to the point of a jelly consistency, without affecting the flavor of the coffee too much. 

Using a substance such as xanthan gum will thicken coffee to the degree to which you add it. Adding plenty of xanthan gum will thicken any liquid as much as you require for any purpose whatsoever. 

If you seek some texture in your coffee or if you want coffee as thick as jelly, then using xanthan gum is the best way to thicken coffee. 


Coffee can be made thicker in the brewing process, or additives can be added to the beverage to make it thicker. Brewing thick coffee by altering brew ratios will make the coffee much more intense, and using additives will alter the flavor of the drink. 

If you want to make coffee thicker, try using these methods until you find one that meets your requirements and produces coffee of the consistency that you are after. This may take time, but these methods are the best way to get there!