How to Make Homemade Irish Cream

Irish Cream liqueur made from scratch

How to Make Homemade Irish Cream ~ this diy Bailys Irish Cream is a perfect copy cat of one of my favorite liqueurs. It’s dangerously delicious, and ridiculously easy to make. Grab your favorite Irish whiskey and some good fresh cream…and prepare to be amazed.

DIY Irish Cream

homemade Irish cream takes just 6 ingredients and 5 minutes!

Irish Cream has always been a favorite of mine, and this from scratch version tastes even better than the bottled stuff. As much as I love the original, there is something just a little sketchy about the idea of bottled cream. Fresh ingredients take this classic Irish liqueur to a whole new level.

what you’ll need to make Irish cream

When you make it yourself you know exactly what’s going in your liqueur: quality ingredients and nothing else.

  • cream ~ this is a rich mixture. You can lighten up by using half and half.
  • whiskey ~ Irish of course. I use Jameson Irish Whiskey for a classic flavor, but you can certainly experiment with other brands or even other spirits.
  • condensed milk ~ this gives the liqueur its characteristic silky texture.
  • vanilla extract ~ brings all the flavors together.
  • instant coffee ~ make sure you’re using instant coffee, not ground coffee.
  • cocoa powder ~ you can also use a chocolate syrup if you have it on hand.
Classic Irish Cream, made from scratch

does this homemade liqueur really taste like Irish Cream?

It’s spot on, I wouldn’t change it in any way, and I highly recommend mixing up a batch for St Patrick’s Day. You can serve it on the rocks, in a White Russian, or in an after dinner coffee. I like it straight up in tiny vintage cordial glasses. If you have any recipes that call for Irish Cream, use this instead.

Homemade Irish Cream

how to store your homemade Baileys

Store your homemade cream liqueur in the fridge, and use it within a couple of months.  But I promise you it will not last that long.

Luxurious homemade Irish Cream

how to serve homemade Irish cream

  • on the rocks ~ this rich drink is wonderful ice cold.
  • in coffee ~ makes the best Irish coffee you and your friends have ever had!
  • over vanilla (or coffee) ice cream ~ create a unique Irish version of affogato.
  • mixed in a cocktail ~ there are so many to choose from.
  • as a dessert shot ~ tiny glasses of this liqueur make the perfect ending to any meal.
DIY Irish Cream
3.98 from 50 votes

How to Make Irish Cream

How to Make Homemade Irish Cream ~ this diy Irish Cream is a perfect copy cat of one of my favorite liqueurs.  It's dangerously delicious, and ridiculously easy to make. 
Course cocktails
Cuisine Irish
Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Yield 12 servings
Calories 225kcal
Author Sue Moran


  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp instant coffee or instant espresso
  • 1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup Irish whiskey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk


  • Put a tablespoon of the cream in a bowl and add the espresso and cocoa powder. Mix these together until both powders are completely dissolved and there are no lumps.
  • Add the rest of the cream, while stirring, or gently whisking.
  • Add the whiskey, vanilla, and condensed milk and blend everything well. Note: alternatively you can put everything in a blender and blend briefly to combine. Don't blend too long or you can risk whipping the cream.
  • Pour the mixture into a bottle with a top, and refrigerate until needed.
  • This will keep in the fridge for at least a couple of months, and probably longer, but I’m pretty sure you will polish it off before then 😉

Cook’s notes


  • Lighten this up by using half and half instead of heavy cream.
  • Add more espresso or more cocoa powder to change the flavor profile to your particular liking.
  • For more DIY liqueurs try my ultra-rich pumpkin liqueur, or, my Nutella liqueur.
  • For a lighter, fruitier experience, try homemade fruit liqueurs ~ these fresh fruit infused vodkas make great cocktail mixers.


Calories: 225kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 38mg | Sodium: 50mg | Potassium: 139mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 380IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 107mg | Iron: 1mg
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

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  • Reply
    Liliane Abergel
    March 14, 2022 at 4:50 pm

    5 stars
    Dear Sue, whenever I try one of your recipes you never disappoint me. This one is great and so easy to make! I had to tweak it a bit until it was to my taste but that’s what makes the World turn 🙂 If you are interested, I have a very simple recipe to make alcohol with all types of fruits, the way it was made in France when I lived there. Thank you for all the great recipes you shared and posted, Liliane.

  • Reply
    Mary Yager
    May 29, 2021 at 10:54 am

    5 stars

  • Reply
    March 18, 2021 at 4:56 pm

    Can’t wait to try this version as seems to have the flavours that gives it the punch that has previously missed for me . However I have always been sceptical of its fridge life ( yes,if it lasts that long ) but with fresh cream normal fridge life usually 2-3 weeks not the approx 2 months you suggest after it’s made. Is it the whisky ? It won’t stop me making it as it sounds amazing.

    • Reply
      Sue Moran
      March 18, 2021 at 5:32 pm

      Hey Angela ~ yes, the alcohol does keep the liquer fresh longer, but definitely keep it refrigerated in an air tight container. Enjoy!

  • Reply
    March 17, 2021 at 1:11 pm

    5 stars
    Omg, I made this for St Paddy’s day 2021 and wowza! It is delicious and tastes JUST like the store bought stuff. I will defintely be making this again and skip buying in the future. I even put it in the whiskey bottle i used up. Slainte! Stay safe and don’t forget to share heehee

  • Reply
    March 14, 2021 at 7:47 pm

    5 stars
    This couldn’t be easier or more delicious! It got a very enthusiastic five stars from all five adults who tried it – and kept coming back for more! I’ll never buy Bailey’s again! Thanks for this amazing copycat recipe!

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