White Russian with Chai Spice-Infused Cream

White Russian with Chai Spice Infused Cream Recipe

To license this image please contact me at nicole@thespicetrain.com.

Cream is one of my favorite ingredients of all time so it’s probably no surprise that White Russians rank high on my list of favorite cocktails. Vodka, coffee liqueur and heavy cream – a brilliant invention. How could that possibly be improved upon, you probably ask. Well, I think I found a way. I infused my heavy cream with chai spices: fresh ginger, black peppercorns, a stick of cinnamon, a few cloves and a few cardamom pods. I simply added the spices to a cup of cold heavy cream, then let the mix sit in the fridge overnight and fished out the spices the next morning. The result was a delicious, perfect complement to the coffee liqueur and vodka. Cheers!


White Russian with Chai Spice-Infused Cream Recipe

serves 4


For the chai spice cream:

  • 1 cup cold heavy cream
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 10 whole cloves
  • one 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper corns, lightly crushed
  • 5 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed

For the drink:

  • 1 cup coffee liqueur (I used Kapali)
  • 1 cup vodka
  • 1 cup chai spice cream
  • ice cubes



For the chai spice cream:

  1. Add all ingredients to a bowl, cover and keep in the fridge for about 12 hours or overnight.
  2. Strain out the spices.

For the drink:

  1. Add a few ice cubes to each glass.
  2. Add equal parts of vodka, coffee liqueur and chai spice cream to each glass.


Food Photography and Styling: Since the cream was the important part in this recipe I wanted to draw proper attention to it and I thought pouring it would be the best way to do that. I looked at every single pouring prop I have and this small glass was pretty much the only one that fit with the the size of the drink glass and the overall style and atmosphere of the shot. I didn’t manage to hold it far enough at its end so I had to clone out my fingers around the side of the glass. I took a few more shots with the drink centered in the frame but in the end I liked the look of the ice cubes and the swirling liquids best in the photo you see here. As usual I used my strobe to light the set.

Nikon D600, 105mm, f/4, 1/125 sec., ISO 50. One Hensel Integra Pro Plus 500 Monolight.

This entry was posted in Drinks.


  1. Debbi says:

    I cant drink more than one White Russian before I’m under the table! I love them! Must try this with Chai! Love the image too and the photo styling stuff. I have the hardest time getting my linen or cloth to look natural in my images. You do it with ease. I need a napkin styling class, lol

    • Nicole B. says:

      I can’t drink many of them either! Napkin styling is incredibly difficult, I totally agree! This here is actually a piece of white paper, I crumpled it up, put it down, didn’t like it and crumpled again 5 or 6 times until I thought it looked good. :)

  2. Marisa Franca @ All Our Way says:

    Perfect dessert as far as I’m concerned. I’ve always like the Black Russian but you’ve taken it to the stratosphere!! I love your spices, I can almost feel them tingling on my tongue. I love your pour shot — one of these days I’ll have to tell you how my photo set up turned out to be a Keystone Kop adventure!!

  3. Julia says:

    Nicole this drink looks AMAZING. I actually am going to try this for Thanksgiving day and look forward to everyones reaction. Yum!! Also your pictures are absolutely spectacular. I’ve now spent almost an hour reading all of your photography posts, oops! Thanks for sharing all of your tricks, it helps!!

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