Coffee Recipes

Red Eye Coffee

by Lucia Liang on May 31, 2023

Red Eye Coffee

If you are a coffee enthusiast, you've probably heard of this special coffee called “red-eye coffee”. But how much do you know about red-eye coffee? This article tells you all you need to know about this drink.


What is Red Eye Coffee?

A Red Eye Coffee is a kind of coffee drinks, that is made by combining drip coffee and espresso, make its contain more caffeine.

Although the order in which the mixture is poured is debatable, It may depend on your country / region and the tools you use to make coffee. Some recipes have espresso first followed by dripping coffee, while others insist on coffee first so that the espresso is on top.


The Origin of Red Eye Coffee

You may not have heard of red-eye coffee before, but certainly have heard of red-eye flights. Indeed, the two are closely related. When people wake up after a long overnight flight, their eyes are bloodshot from lack of sleep, hence the name “red eye”. Red eye coffee is believed to have originated in the US, where it was thought to provide extra energy to stay awake on a red-eye overnight flight from the West Coast to New York.


How much caffeine is in a red eye coffee?

The exact amount of caffeine in a cup of coffee depends on factors such as how the beans themselves are roasted, how they are brewed and how much coffee you consume.

A classic red eye is made up of a shot of espresso, which contains about 100 milligrams of caffeine, and a regular drip coffee, which contains between 65 and 175 milligrams. So, at a minimum, a cup of red-eye coffee may contain 165 milligrams of caffeine.

This ratio of caffeine intake from this coffee is pretty strong. The most authentic way to drink red eye is without added sugar, but no more than two glasses a day are recommended.


How does red-eye coffee taste

Red eye coffee has the aroma of espresso without being as weak as an American coffee. It is richer and deeper than regular drip coffee, but not as strong as espresso,

Many people find red-eye coffee to be smooth. However, red-eye coffee is too strong for people who prefer light coffee. There is no standard for good coffee. Everyone has their own standard.


You make a red-eye at home


  • Drip coffee machine
  • Espresso machine
  • Coffee cup


  • finely-ground coffee beans


  • First, prepare one cup of your preferred brewed coffee according to your preferred method—such as drip coffee machine.
  • Then, use your espresso machine to pull a shot of espresso.
  • Pour the shot of espresso into your cup of brewed coffee and enjoy.

There's a lot of talk about the ratio. The regular ratio is 1:4, one espresso 30ml to four drip coffee 120ml, or 1:8. This ratio can vary from person to person. You can also add milk or cream to taste according to your preference.


Different addition ratios

If you add two shots of espresso and drip coffee (the ratio is upgraded to 2:4), you have “Black Eye Coffee”.

If you add a third shot of espresso to drip coffee (upgraded to a 3:4 ratio), you have “Dead Eye Coffee”.

If you want to drink coffee and experience the magic blend of espresso and drip coffee without consuming too much caffeine, “Lazy Eye Coffee” is definitely a great choice.

Made from espresso and decaffeinated drip coffee (a ratio of 2:4), it is preferred by those who cannot consume caffeine.

Now that you know more about red eye coffee, the preparation and steps needed to make it at home, so the next time you need to stay up late or get up early, try to make a cup of red eye coffee!


Works Cited

MasterClass. “Red-Eye Coffee Recipe: How to Make a Red-Eye Coffee”, June 16, 2022,


Barbearista. “What Is A Red Eye Coffee? The Answer Might Surprise You!”, June 28, 2022,


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