Red Eye Featured

Easy Red-Eye Coffee Recipe Sure To Wake You Up!

Let me ask you something.

  • Have you ever woken up in the morning too tired to do anything?
  • Do you sometimes need an extra jolt in the afternoon to work, study, etc.?

If you answered yes, you must learn how to make Red Eye Coffee. The extra caffeine kick will wake you up quicker than you think.

It is very easy to make, read our Red Eye coffee recipe below to learn how.

What is a Red-Eye Coffee?

Red-eye coffee is a shot of espresso in drip coffee. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s popularly known as the “coffee with a shot.”

Easy Red Eye Coffee 1

Veteran baristas have told me that this recipe was first used in the ’90s in the United States to create a subtle combo of coffee flavors. Ever since then, Red-eye coffee has become sought-after among Americans. It is even served in coffee shops like Starbucks, where they also add some flavoring.

Having a cup of Red eye coffee is a quick way to get a hefty dose of caffeine whenever you don’t have time to drink 2 cups of coffee, and it is sometimes called the “office worker’s drink.”

Where did it get its name?

The name Red eye coffee stems from the idea that it keeps people awake at night, giving them red eyes. Some also draw parallels with airplane “red-eye flights,” trans-oceanic overnight flights where passengers usually have red eyes in the morning.


What Do You Need to Make Red Eye Coffee?

Making Red Eye coffee is easy as ABC, and its procedure doesn’t involve numerous steps like other coffee drinks. There aren’t many ingredients, and creating this drink shouldn’t take much time.

Here’s what you need for your Red Eye coffee.

  • Ground coffee
  • Espresso maker (or alternative espresso made with either a French press, a manual espresso maker, Moka Pot, or an Aeropress)
  • Drip coffee maker
  • A coffee mug

How to Make a Red-Eye Coffee

Here’s the best recipe for making red-eye coffee at home.

Red Eye Featured

Easy Red-Eye Coffee Recipe Sure To Wake You Up!

A combination of equal parts espresso and drip coffee for a higher caffeine intake.
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Recipes
Servings 1 servings


  • 1 cup drip coffee
  • 1 shot espresso


  • Brew a cup of drip coffee.
  • Pull a shot of espresso.
  • Pour the espresso into your drip coffee.



  • Stir the espresso and drip coffee to combine them properly before drinking.
  • Add creamer or milk if you want to make your brew a little bit creamier.

Step 1: Prepare Your Espresso

Making espresso is not as straightforward as preparing regular coffee, but it’s doable if you have the right equipment. 

A countertop espresso machine gives you an espresso with a rich crema layer, which is perfect for this beverage.

However, if you don’t have an espresso maker, there are alternate ways to make espresso with a Moka pot, Aeropress, or a French press.

I do not recommend using instant coffee with this recipe, though. 

You can add about 9 grams for every espresso shot and grind it until it’s fine enough. Tap the coffee grounds in the portafilter and place it in the espresso machine to pull the shot. 

Step 2: Make Regular Drip Coffee

You can make pour-over coffee by boiling water in a kettle and pouring the hot steaming water over freshly ground coffee on a filter. The hot water should sieve through the dark coffee grounds, slowly drip, and collect in the container.

That shouldn’t take much time, and your filter coffee should be ready in just a few minutes.

You can also use the French press or Aeropress to make more diluted coffee as an alternative to normal drip coffee.

Step 3: Add Espresso to the Drip Coffee

Transfer the collected drip coffee to a coffee mug (preferably a classic 8 oz mug).

Next, quickly add the espresso shot to your cup of drip coffee. If you’re quick enough, the crema should stay intact on top of the black coffee.

Your Red eye coffee is now ready. Enjoy it with creamer or sugar, and get ready for the caffeine hit you will feel in a few minutes!

What Kind of Cup Should You Serve Red Eye Coffee In?

You can serve your red-eye coffee in any cup or mug that can hold the beverage volume you made.

Coffee Cup

However, the classic mug is the most commonly used by people who sip the drink in a restaurant or in a more relaxed ambiance.

Tips for Taking Red Eye Coffee

  • Using milk or creamer: Red-eye coffee is more enjoyable without adding anything. But if you like coffee with milk, you can still add it to taste, but keep in mind that milk will dilute the taste and increase the volume. Creamers are a better option for drip brew coffee, since they don’t add much volume.
  • Good water: Don’t use simple tap water for making coffee at home. Use filtered water to brew your coffee.
  • Use quality beans: This is the most important tip for making great coffee. Choose a high-quality bean that has been roasted well and has a strong flavor profile.
  • Grind your own beans: Freshly ground beans will always taste better than pre-ground coffee. If you don’t have a grinder, it’s a worthwhile investment if you love coffee.
  • Don’t overdo it on the grounds: Too much can make for a bitter, too strong cup of coffee.
  • Final stir: Give your red eye one last stir before serving to mix the espresso with the drip coffee properly.

Frequently Asked Questions

An 8 oz mug of red-eye coffee contains about 150-200mg of caffeine, depending on the brewing method and the type of coffee beans you use.

Red-eye coffee has a single conventional espresso shot poured into black coffee. That helps create a subtle balance of espresso and filter coffee flavors, and a significant caffeine dose.

Using a double shot is called a Black eye coffee, but it is excessive in my opinion. You should not get that much caffeine into your system that quickly as it could have side effects.

If you want something even more potent, a Dead eye coffee (aka Dripped eye coffee or Green eye coffee) has three espresso shots. It has huge amounts of caffeine, so don’t say I didn’t warn you!

Red-eye coffee is more enjoyable if you drink it hot I think, but who am I to tell otherwise if you want to have it cold. You can even put ice into it, I’ve heard rumors of a secret menu at Starbucks that offers iced Red Eye coffee.

Red Eye Coffee is a fantastic drink that helps you wake up and be ready for whatever life throws at you.

Try it on a tired morning/afternoon, and let me know how you like it! 

Animated Coffee Cup Icon

Brew Smarter, Not Harder
(And Get 15% Off)

Subscribe to our newsletter for less trial-and-error, more ‘Aha!’ brewing moments, and real discounts!

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating