Coffee-flavored Tiramisu Dessert

I love coffee and I love chocolate.

One of my favorite treats to buy when I was in the U.S. were dark chocolate-covered coffee beans. I loved them and I knew they were safe from mon mari.

Sadly, I’ve never seen them here but I do manage to find coffee-infused dark chocolate truffles (also safe from mon mari).

All of which makes the fact that I rarely eat tiramisu rather strange. I think the reason is that the one or two times I’ve tried it, admittedly not in Italy, it’s been, shall we say, insipid….. tasteless, boring, not calorie worthy.

To be honest, I had no idea it was supposed to be coffee-flavored. I thought it was just…. sweet.

Mon mari loves it.

Now that I know, and I have this recipe using strong coffee, I’m ready to make my own.

Well, I will once the pandemic ends and we can have dinner parties again.

Read on for a great-sounding recipe along with a few insights from the author:

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I am one of those people who has a sweet tooth and I just love making (and eating) cakes, cookies, and other sweet treats. The most recent dessert I made is a classical Italian tiramisu. This dessert menu staple is simple to make, but super delicious, especially if you enjoy coffee flavors and creamy cakes. Honestly, I have been too busy for cooking anything complicated lately, so tiramisu was the perfect choice for simplicity and speed. The best thing about tiramisu? There is no baking involved!

Of course, the key to perfect tiramisu is coffee. I only use premium-quality coffee and grind the beans myself, rather than purchasing pre-ground. 

When making tiramisu, the quality of the flavor scales with the quality of your espresso. Use lower quality coffee or a crappy machine and you will notice a stark difference between the 2. I recently purchased a Breville Barista Express through a deal on and not only has it improved my coffee; it has also improved my cooking. As you know, I love devices that are easy to use, clean, and maintain, and so far, this machine has been a godsend.

So I fired up the Barista Express and pulled a strong espresso, which I used later for a dip. So here’s the tiramisu recipe I used. Of course, feel free to experiment with the ingredients and to tinker with the amounts to find your perfect flavor. Maybe you like your coffee stronger, or you want less sugar in your dessert? It is totally up to you!

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Italian Tiramisu dessert

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 9 servings

Category: Cakes, Desserts


  • 6 egg yolks 
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 1 ¼ cup mascarpone cheese – keep it at room temperature
  • 1 ¾ cup heavy whipping cream (use cream with a neutral taste, not vanilla-flavored)
  • 30 Italian ladyfingers (the crunchy ones are the best)
  • 1 cup espresso or strong filter coffee (I prefer espresso)
  • 1 cup coffee-flavored liquor
  • 6 tbs (2 oz) cocoa for dusting


  • Combine egg yolks and sugar, it would be best to use a whisk instead of an electric mixer
  • Cook for 10 minutes on medium-low temperature, while stirring constantly. 
  • When combined and cooked, let it cool to room temperature.
  • Mix the mascarpone in. Make sure it is at room temperature as well. Mix until it is blended. 
  • In another bowl, mix the whipped cream until stiff (you can use an electric mixer for this).
  • Add the whipped cream into mascarpone filling. Make sure both are at room temperature as it will make the mixing easier. Do not use an electric mixer for this part! Instead, use a spoon to combine. Gently but persistently, “fold” the cream inside the mascarpone. 
  • Make sure your espresso is cold, then mix it with the coffee liquor (optional). 
  • Dip the ladyfingers into the espresso. Do not soak for too long, as they can fall apart, but make sure they are moist enough.
  • Line up the wet ladyfingers at the bottom of a baking dish.
  • Use half of the mascarpone cream filling to place over the ladyfingers.
  • Then, add another layer of ladyfingers. Use the remaining cream to cover them.
  • Refrigerate overnight (at least for 6-8 hours)
  • Dust with cocoa powder just before serving


Tiramisu is best enjoyed when cold. That’s why it is important to leave it in the fridge overnight or at least allow a couple of hours to cool down and gain its recognizable flavor. If you feel your tiramisu is not firm enough, just pop it in the freezer for a little bit. It is the perfect summer dessert – but for me, any it compliments a good meal in any season. Using the quantities above will give you around 9 servings, so you can use proportionally more or less, depending on how many servings you need. 

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Everyone knows that Italy has a pretty strong coffee culture too! For us, it is sometimes confusing, but it is just part of the fun. Sometimes, I miss the charming cafes and quick to-go coffees on the streets of Italian cities. I hope I will be able to visit it again soon, but until then, I will just turn my kitchen into “Little Italy”.

Which coffee are you using and how much did you need for your tiramisu? Do you have an espresso machine or coffee maker or are you brewing another way? I would love to hear about your tiramisu recipes and other coffee-flavored cakes, so feel free to write in the comments! 

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