Daphne Oz’s Vegan Vietnamese-Style Iced Coffee Recipe

Last Update: September 28, 2022

The title of Daphne Oz’s new cookbook, “The Happy Cook,” says it all. It’s filled with recipes that aim for smiles—both from the chef and those ready to dig in! And, because a happy cook is often a caffeinated one, we decided to share Daphne’s recipe for Vietnamese-Style Iced Coffee. It’s way more fun than your average cup of joe and uses a sweet coconut milk infusion made with vanilla, dates, and cardamom instead of the condensed milk that traditional versions call for. The result is a slightly healthier, still-decadent drink that vegans can enjoy, too!

This recipe also calls for cold-brew coffee (see instructions on how to make it below), which has a smoother taste and lower acidity than regular brewed coffee. It tends to be a little gentler on sensitive stomachs, too. For our java, we used French-pressed, cold-brewed Kicking Horse Kick Ass Dark Roast Coffee. Roasted in small batches and made from 100 percent organic, shade-grown Arabica beans from Indonesia and South America, it has notes of chocolate malt, molasses, and licorice that pair perfectly with the sweet Vietnamese spices in Daphne’s recipe.

Don’t forget to tune into our Facebook live event with Daphne Oz on April 11 to see this happy cook in action! Find all the details here.

Daphne Oz’s Vegan Vietnamese-Style Iced Coffee Recipe

Yield: 4 (6-ounce) servings
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 13 hours


For the cold-brew coffee
1 cup Kicking Horse Kick Ass Dark Roast Whole Bean Coffee
4 cups cold water

For the iced coffee drink
1 cup light coconut milk
4 Medjool dates, pitted
¼ teaspoon ground cardamom
Pinch of kosher salt
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 cups strong cold-brewed coffee
2 tablespoons maple syrup (optional)


Make the cold-brew coffee
Grind coffee beans on coarse setting and add to French Press coffeemaker or a large container. Add cold water. Stir to combine and let sit on countertop for 12 hours or overnight. Press the coffee (if using French Press) or strain through a fine-mesh sieve lined with cheesecloth. The resulting liquid is a cold-brew concentrate to be used in the recipe. (To make a standard cup of cold-brew coffee, mix 2 parts water to 1 part concentrate. Heat or enjoy cold.)

Make the iced coffee drink
In a small saucepan, combine the coconut milk, dates, cardamom, and salt over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer then scrape the vanilla seeds out of the pod, and into the liquid before adding the whole pod. Cover and bring the entire blend to a simmer again. Remove from heat, uncover, and cool for 20 minutes.

Discard the vanilla pod, then pour the mixture into a blender and blend until well combined and smooth.

Fill 4 glasses with ice. Divide the date milk evenly between the glasses (should be about ¼ cup per glass) then add ½ cup of cold-brewed coffee concentrate to each glass. For a sweeter drink, stir in a little maple syrup. Serve with a straw and a smile!

From THE HAPPY COOK by Daphne Oz. Copyright © 2016 by Daphne Oz. Reprinted by permission of William Morrow, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.

Photo credit: Paul Delmont

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Melinda Gross

Melinda writes about health, wellness, and food for the Thrive Market blog. She started her career as a financial journalist in NYC and has written for Where Magazine, Worth, Forbes, and When she's not reading or writing, she enjoys working out, sketching, and playing with her daughter and mini-dachshund, Goliath.

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