Dalgona coffee, often called "400 times coffee", has become the "quarantine coffee" among netizens during the COVID-19 pandemic. Known for its appealing visual and low difficulty to make at home, Dalgona coffee soon became a hashtag challenge on social media such as Instagram and TikTok. 

Dalgona coffee got its name from a South Korean actor Jung ll-woo after appearing on a TV show. He went to Macau where he was served a homemade whipped coffee in Hon Kee Cáfe. Jung compared the taste to dalgona, a Korean sugar sweet. Long before Dalgona coffee was coined as a social media trend, it  existed in various countries for different names. 

Regardless of its origin and the various names it is called for, the whipped coffee boasts its name for its seemingly easy steps and difficulty in execution. Here are the simple steps to follow if you would like to make your own Dalgona coffee at home:


2 tablespoons of instant coffee

2 tablespoons of sugar of your choice (brown sugar, granulated sugar, etc)

2 tablespoons of hot water

1 cup of milk of your choice


1. Whisk the instant coffee, sugar, and hot water together until it becomes foamy and frosty. 

2. Pour the whipped coffee over the hot or cold milk of your own choice. 

3. If you wants to be a little bit more creative, you can top the coffee with crumbled biscuits, coffee powder, and cocoa.

Charlotte He

If you're too lazy to make a homemade version, there are luckily some options that fun locales have whipped up themselves. I tried these three different Dalgona coffees in California, and each of them represent the diverse glamour of Dalgona coffee in their taste and appearance. 

#1. Sweethorny Dessert Dalgona Coffee

Charlotte He

This Dalgona Coffee from Sweethorny Dessert uses coffee instead of milk as its base. The perfect balance between the dense foam and the smooth coffee adds to the delight for your tastebuds. Just remember not to try it at night, or your sleep schedule would suffer from the generous amounts of caffeine this drink contains.

#2. Flippoly Dalgona Coffee

Charlotte He

Flippoly has a wide variety of Dalgona Coffee drinks that you can choose. You can choose milk tea, milk, and coffee as the base. For the dalgona milk I chose, the silky texture of the dalgona mixture at the top makes it a refreshing go-to drink in summer. Flippoly also provides you with a small box of dalgona, the Korean sugar sweet, that you could either eat it alone or put it into the drink. It adds a nice flavor to the drink once the milk absorbs the dalgona. 

#3. YiFang Brown Sugar 400-times Coffee with Boba

Charlotte He

If you are a big fan of boba and coffee, this Brown Sugar boba version of Dalgona coffee is a must-try drink. Unfortunately, the foam had been absorbed when it was delivered to me. But I could still taste the rich flavor of dalgona in the drink. The chewy boba and the brown sugar turn this drink into a playful treat perfect to enjoy on the weekend!

These three different Dalgona drinks demonstrate the creativity and diversity of this "quarantine drink". If you would like to join the family of #dalgonacoffeechallenge, why not start by making your own Dalgona drink at home?