What Is Mocha Coffee

Is mocha coffee caffeinated chocolate or chocolate coffee? Is the cup of coffee half full or half empty? Experts say classical mocha is a cup of coffee made strictly from mocha beans. Mocha beans originate from Yemen and have a distinctive chocolate flavor. Nowadays, if you order a mocha, you will get a gentle mixture of coffee, steamed milk, chocolate, and a thin layer of milk foam.

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In this article, we will show you the benefits of drinking mocha coffee, its pros and cons, and teach you how to make your choccy pleasure in a cup.

Benefits of Drinking Mocha Coffee

We all know the benefits of drinking coffee daily, especially premium black coffee. Add that to the benefits of consuming a little bit of chocolate and milk every day, and you get a nice list of reasons to drink mocha every day. But wait, there’s more. The perfect mix of caffeine and the chocolate that mocha offers do wonders for your attention level. Also, it reduces stress levels and reduces the stress of cardiovascular diseases.

Although you can achieve similar results by consuming coffee and chocolate separately, they won’t be the same as when you drink mocha. Cocoa in mocha enhances the good sides of the caffeine, lowers the bad ones, and vice versa. So, if you need a mood enhancer before or after a long day, grabbing a cup of mocha coffee is one of the best choices you can make.

Short History of Mocha Coffee

Can you imagine someone has a monopoly on coffee production? Well, Yemen (Western Asia) had it, and it lasted over 200 years. Circa 1450, coffee cultivation started in Yemen, and they grew Arabica beans. It was the first and only cultivated coffee in the world, till cca 1700. That was the time the Dutch East India Company started cultivating and exporting coffee from Java, ending this lucrative monopoly.

All the coffee Yemen produced was shipped in a port city named Mocha or Al Mokha. And in time, the place became a synonym to the coffee.

The secret lies in the balance. People who drink mocha usually want all the coffee benefits without the strong coffee taste, and the chocolate part levels it up. Also, you can experiment with your cup of mocha, adding less or more ingredients. The rest of the coffee drinks family usually has much stricter rules. And, we shouldn’t undermine the great impact that Starbucks and the similar large coffee chains had in popularizing mocha for younger generations.

Pros and Cons of Drinking Mocha Coffee


  • A lot of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that every coffee contains and that goes especially for dark roasts. French roast is one of the great examples of that. Also, there are several ways to consume French roast coffee, so you won’t be just limited to making mocha out of it.
  • Breakfast in the cup. One cup of mocha has enough calories to keep you going for a long time. You can control the amounts of calories with different types of milk and the different types of chocolate that you use for making the mocha.
  • Quick wake up. Two shots of espresso worth of caffeine and some caffeine from chocolate is a guarantee you will wake up quickly and stay sharp for a long time. Of course, it can also have negative impacts, and you can read about it later in the text.

Pros and Cons of Drinking Mocha Coffee


  • Calories. A lot of calories. That goes especially if you decorate your mocha with whipped cream or use chocolate syrup instead of unsweetened cocoa powder. You can always opt for ingredients with a lower calorie count.
  • Longer prep time. Especially if you don’t have an espresso machine. Warming the milk, making froth, brewing coffee…and mixing it will take your time.
  • The stomach. Coffee can act as a laxative, especially when you drink it on an empty stomach. The coffee with less acidity is perfect if your stomach is sensitive.
  • Caffeine level. Usually, mocha is made with two shots of espresso. Add the caffeine from the chocolate to the sum, and you will get a caffeine bomb that can disturb your sleeping schedule. To counter that, use decaf coffee, or lower the coffee ratio and add more milk.

Ingredients for Making a Mocha Coffee

Freshly Brewed or Instant Coffee

If possible, always use freshly brewed coffee. Remember always to grind the beans before making French press coffee, or any coffee at all. Good, fresh beans make good coffee. Espresso is our favorite choice for making mocha and should be yours, too. However, if you don’t have an espresso machine, every coffee will do. Just make it a bit stronger, and that’s it. Decaffeinated coffee is a great choice for your evening cup of mocha as decaf coffee won’t make you lose sleep. For a quicker process, you can always use a cup of instant coffee or instant coffee powder.

Steamed Milk

One of the benefits of having an espresso machine is the steam wand. It’s a powerful yet simple to use tool that transforms a regular cup of milk into a frothy fantasy. Now, the choices are endless. You can use cow’s milk, goat’s milk, or even buffalo’s milk. Alternatively, you can use plant-based ones, for instance, hemp or oat milk. Almond milk is also a great choice if you go for a healthier alternative. Just remember, the milk with more milk fat will give you a thicker, richer texture.

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Cocoa Powder (Chocolate Syrup)

Store-bought chocolate syrup is one of the most convenient choices, as it is available and makes the preparation a bit easier. However, a large amount of sugar also makes it the unhealthiest choice. Our money goes on the unsweetened cocoa powder. You know, the one you use for baking cakes. Mix it with a little hot water to get a thick syrup. Alternatively, you can use hot chocolate mix powder, shaved chocolate, or you can melt a chocolate bar in a microwave.

Sugar (Optional)

White sugar gives the mocha an additional sweeter taste. Also, it can give your belly a few extra pounds. Brown sugar or raw honey are much healthier options. And, feel free to use artificial sweeteners (like stevia) for that sweet taste, with fewer calories.

Whipped Cream and Cocoa

Although whipped cream is not part of the original mocha recipe, it’s a great topping. The rich, creamy texture will add to the flavor of your mocha, but it will also add to the calorie count. The healthier alternative is to replace the whipped cream with milk froth. But, even the whipped cream is acceptable if you don’t overdo it.

Cocoa powder is a great finishing point for every cup of mocha, as it rounds the visual aspect of it. Alternatively, you can use coffee powder (for a bit bitter taste), chocolate crumbs, or shreds of chocolate.

How to Make a Mocha Coffee With an Espresso Machine

How to Make a Mocha Coffee With an Espresso Machine

Step1 – Start with adding cocoa powder or chocolate syrup

You can also use a hot chocolate mixture or grated chocolate of your choice. 

Step 2 – Add a bit of hot water and mix well

Of course, in crowded cafes, baristas premade a lot of water/cocoa syrup, as they don’t have the time to do it one cup at a time. 

Step 3 – Prepare a double shot of espresso

Pour it over the chocolate. Stir well, so the flavors intertwine.

Step 4 – Using a steam wand, heat your milk

The cow’s milk is the usual choice, but you can use any milk you desire.

Step 5 – Swirl your milk pitcher a bit 

This way, the excess air is being released, leaving us with rich, thick foam. This is how you make perfectly frothed milk for a latte, cappuccino, and all the other milky drinks. 

Step 6 – Still swirling the pitcher, pour the milk into the cup

Finish it with a layer of thick foam.

Step 7 – Decorate your tasty cup of mocha

Chocolate sprinkles, grated chocolate, or something else to enhance both the visual and the tasting pleasure. Use a coffee cup warmer, so your mocha stays hot.


How to Make a Mocha Coffee Without a Machine

Step 1 – Make a strong, fresh cup of coffee

The thermal coffee maker works just like a drip coffee machine, and it is fairly simple to use, so it makes a great choice.

Step 2 – Take chocolate syrup and cocoa powder

Mix it well. Of course, you can always use a hot chocolate powdered mix or anything else containing chocolate.

Step 3 – Heat the desired amount of milk 

You can use any milk you prefer, from cow’s milk to nut milk or a plant-based one. Don’t overheat it, as it will ruin the taste. 

Step 4 – Place milk in a heat resistant jar, shaker or a coffee tumbler

Shake it well for 30 seconds or so until it becomes frothy.

Step 5 – Take your favorite cup

Put the choco mix first and pour coffee over it. Stir well.

Step 6 – Swirl milk in a jar and pour it slowly into the cup

Milk will go first, and the rich foam will cover the top of your cup. Sprinkle some cocoa or coffee powder on the top, and your perfect cup of mocha is ready for consumption.


Homemade Mocha Coffee Recipes

Quick 3-Step Instant Coffee Mocha

Coffee purists would be shocked how we dared to use anything else but the espresso shot in making our mocha. But some of us don’t like espresso and don’t have any of the fancy equipment used for coffee making. This recipe is practical for students, tenants, and all the others who struggle with too little kitchen space and too little time.

  1. Mix one tablespoon of instant coffee with 4 ounces of hot water
  2. Add a teaspoon of chocolate syrup or cocoa to the mix and stir well.
  3. Heat the milk in a microwave or the saucepan and add it to a cup.

Homemade Iced Mocha

A hot cup of mocha reminds us of cozy afternoons in fall and winter. But, when the summer comes and the temperatures are unbearable, what then? We are not ready to give up on that divine taste just because the temperatures are too high.

You will need:

  • Half a cup of cold-brewed coffee
  • Half a cup of cold milk (cow’s, coconut, hemp, any milk)
  • 1 tablespoon of chocolate syrup
  • 1 teaspoon of coffee caramel syrup (optional)

Pour the chocolate syrup into a tall, thick glass. Fill the glass with ⅔ of ice cubes. Don’t use crushed ice, as it will water down the taste. Pour your cold brew coffee over the ice and top it with cold milk. Finish it up with a little bit of coffee caramel syrup on the top, put a straw in it, and you are good to go!

Do’s and Don’ts When Making a Mocha Coffee


  • Do always use a freshly brewed cup of coffee and fresh milk.
  • Do use your favorite Keurig machine if you are expecting more guests. Keurig has a different setting for coffee brewing, so every guest will get a perfect cup of coffee quickly.
  • Do experiment with the ratios of the ingredients to find your personal best mix.
  • Do use the best BPA free coffee maker for making a healthy cup of coffee every time.


  • Don’t overheat the milk as it will badly change the taste of the coffee.
  • Don’t overstuff any ingredient, as you will end up with something that definitely isn’t mocha.

FAQ About Mocha Coffees

FAQ About Mocha Coffees

How much coffee do you put in a mocha?

It depends on your preferences. Most of the recipes include two shots of espresso, but you can experiment with the cold brew coffee, french press coffee, or anything similar. Just remember, mocha shouldn’t taste like coffee or like chocolate. Find a good coffee-milk-chocolate ratio.

What has more caffeine, coffee or mocha?

We can give you an endless discussion about that. It depends on the coffee beans, roast type, and the way you prepare your cup of coffee. But we will keep it simple. Mocha has more caffeine than the regular espresso (which you use to make mocha), and the reason is simple. Chocolate also contains caffeine. The darker the chocolate used, the bigger the caffeine level. Whether it’s a chocolate syrup or the cocoa powder you have been using, it adds to a total caffeine score.

What’s the difference between mocha and macchiato?

If you order a macchiato in Europe or one of the classical coffee shops, you will get a shot of espresso with few drops of milk foam. Or, few drops of lighter coffee creamer for vegans, if you insist. Ordering a latte macchiato will get you more milk, more milk foam, and less espresso. However, in more modern coffee shops (Starbucks), baristas add chocolate syrup, along with spices and sugar to both macchiato and cafe latte.

Macchiato will have a strong coffee taste and will wake you up. Latte macchiato, somewhat similar to cafe latte, will have a more milky taste. Neither one should contain any chocolate.

What’s the difference between mocha and cafe latte?

Let’s assume they are both espresso-based. When you are making a latte, use one shot of espresso, 4 parts of steamed milk, and one part of milk foam. For a mocha, you will be using two shots of espresso, two parts of chocolate, and one part of steamed milk.

Hence the latte has a smoother, milkier taste, while mocha has a bold, choccy flavor and a lot more caffeine, as it contains more coffee.

Does a mocha have caffeine?

Every cup of mocha has caffeine in it. As both coffee and chocolate contain caffeine, it’s impossible to avoid it. However, white chocolate (technically, it’s not chocolate) contains no caffeine at all. So, for the lowest possible caffeine level, make your mocha using decaf coffee and white chocolate. Don’t forget that decaf coffee still has some amount of caffeine.

My espresso is fine, but my mocha is weak in coffee flavor, what do I do?

Mocha shouldn’t taste like coffee. It should taste like mocha. But, you probably added too much milk or too much chocolate if you are a sweet-tooth. The secret to a good mocha lies in a balance of all ingredients. Of course, you can always make mocha with more espresso or with a double-brew to enhance the coffee taste.

Can I drink mocha chilled?

Of course, it’s one of our favorite to-go drinks. Lots of stores offer their canned version of chilled mocha, and of course, you can always make your own, using our recipe! Furthermore, you can pour mocha in your ice cube tray and get mocha ice cubes for making a great iced coffee every time. If you have ice cream molds, you can make mocha icecream.


A cup of mocha makes everyone happy. A cup of mocha spiked with your favorite liqueur makes everyone even happier. Making your mocha drink using our recipes will make you healthy and happy.

Photos from: NatashaPhoto / depositphotos.com, IgorKlimov / depositphotos.com, Milkos / depositphotos.com and margaryta / depositphotos.com.

Love drinking great coffee? If you want a tasty, freshly roasted bean you can buy online, try something from LifeBoost and thank me later. Click here to check it out and save 50%.