Duomo Gelato

Gelato and Coffee Recipe: Affogato

An affogato, meaning “drowned” in Italian, is a classic dessert that beautifully combines the rich, creamy texture of gelato with the bold, robust flavor of espresso. This simple yet elegant treat is perfect for coffee and dessert lovers alike. Here’s how to make this delightful Italian dessert at home.


  • 1 scoop of vanilla gelato (or your favorite gelato flavor)
  • 1 shot of hot espresso (about 1 ounce)
  • Optional: a splash of liqueur (such as Amaretto or Frangelico) for an adult twist
  • Optional: chocolate shavings, cocoa powder, or crushed nuts for garnish


  1. Chill Your Serving Glass: For the best experience, chill your serving glass in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes before assembling your affogato. This helps keep the gelato from melting too quickly when the hot espresso is poured over it.

  2. Prepare the Espresso: Brew a fresh shot of espresso using your espresso machine, moka pot, or preferred brewing method. If you don’t have an espresso machine, strong brewed coffee can also work as a substitute.

  3. Scoop the Gelato: Place one generous scoop of vanilla gelato into the chilled serving glass. You can also experiment with other gelato flavors like chocolate, hazelnut, or caramel for a unique twist.

  4. Pour the Espresso: Immediately after brewing, pour the hot espresso shot over the gelato. If you’re using a liqueur, add a splash now.

  5. Garnish (Optional): To add a little extra flair, garnish your affogato with chocolate shavings, a sprinkle of cocoa powder, or some crushed nuts.

  6. Serve Immediately: Affogato is best enjoyed right away, while the gelato is still firm and contrasts beautifully with the hot espresso.

Variations and Tips:

  • Different Gelato Flavors: While vanilla is a classic choice, don’t hesitate to try other flavors such as pistachio, mint chocolate chip, or coconut for a new flavor experience.
  • Add a Biscotti: Serve your affogato with a biscotti or a small cookie on the side for a delightful crunch.
  • Make It Boozy: Adding a splash of your favorite liqueur can enhance the flavors. Amaretto, hazelnut liqueur, or Irish cream are great choices.


The affogato is a quintessential Italian dessert that effortlessly marries the intense flavors of espresso with the creamy, cold sweetness of gelato. Whether enjoyed as a sophisticated end to a dinner party or a quick treat on a warm afternoon, this dessert is sure to impress.

At Duomo Gelato, we cherish the art of creating authentic gelato experiences. Visit us to pick up your favorite gelato flavor and try making this delightful affogato at home. Buon appetito!

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