Named for the vodka they’re made with, both the White Russian and its dairy-free version, the Black Russian were created by a Belgian bartender back in 1949.

White Russian Cocktail

Creamy, rich and deliciously sweet, we think of the White Russian and the two variations included here (the Black Russian and the Sombrero) as an indulgent, after-dinner treat.

The original version was made with Southern, a brand of coffee liqueur that was popular when these cocktails were created.

Today Kahlua, a rich-flavored coffee liqueur made with 100% Arabica beans and sugarcane (aka rum) is the favorite for making these drinks.

White Russian Cocktail

White Russian

Yield: 1 serving
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

Made with coffee liqueur, vodka, and cream, the White Russian is a deliciously sweet cocktail with origins dating back to the mid-1900s.


  • 1-1/2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce coffee liqueur
  • Light cream


  1. Fill an old fashioned glass with ice.
  2. Add the vodka and Kahlua and stir.
  3. Top with light cream and serve.


Here are two popular variations on the White Russian, its sister cocktail, the Black Russian and the vodka-free version, the Sombrero.

Black Russian

  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce coffee liqueur

Fill an old fashioned glass with ice. Add the vodka and coffee liqueur and stir.


  • 2 ounces coffee liqueur
  • Light cream or milk

Fill and old fashioned glass with ice. Add the coffee liqueur, top with cream and stir.