I figured that Irish Cream like Bailey’s was something I would never drink again. It was a little sad. Then I saw a recipe for homemade Irish Cream on Chowhound, which made me wonder if I could make a gluten, dairy, and soy free version that also avoids can liners and HFCS.

There are many keys to real Bailey’s which are not options for me (like cream from real Irish cows) and the Chowhound knockoff used sweetened condensed milk which is rather a non-starter in the dairy-free world.

I made a few versions that were not exactly authentic tasting. Finally after poring over the Bailey’s site I figured out my mistakes and this version actually worked. I went back and taste compared the actual genuine Bailey’s Irish Cream with this one. The real thing contains more fat which gives it a richer mouthfeel. Mine is thickened with tapioca which mimics the thickness just fine, but lacks the richness of actual milkfat (and yes, I actually did taste comparisons despite the unpleasant side effects) but otherwise, this tastes like Irish Cream.

So if you cannot have the real thing…this is a darn good approximation. You can easily double it. I personally made about 7 batches of the stuff getting it right so I wasn’t interested in efficiency.

1 cup So Delicious Vanilla or Original creamer
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 c. Irish whiskey (I use Jameson’s)
1/4 tsp. instant coffee or instant espresso
3/4 tsp unsweetened cocoa
2 to 3 tsp tapioca starch (may be called tapioca flour) depending on how thick you like it
1/2 tsp. vanilla if using the vanilla flavor, 1 tsp if using the Original flavor

Measuring cups and spoons
1 saucepan
1 fork for stirring.wooden spoon
Strainer (optional, but if you have gloppy bits you may find it handy)
1 quart glass bottle for finished product

Mix tapioca, instant coffee, cocoa sugar and tapioca starch in a small pot. Stir until combined.
Heat 1/2 cup of the creamer with the coffee grounds, the cocoa, the tapioca and the sugar in a saucepan set on high. Stir constantly from while it it cold until it boils. It will boil like candy and will double in volume despite the stirring.
Boil for about 1 minute
Turn off heat and allow to cool to the point of no longer boiling
Add vanilla
Add the second 1/2 cup of creamer and mix until incorporated.
Allow mixture to cool, then add the irish whisky.
Shake to combine.
Chill and serve

It keeps for a few weeks in the refrigerator. It is not shelf stable.

This can be made kosher via use of an approved Kashrus whisky. So Delicious creamer has kosher certification and Bob’s Red Mill Tapioca Flour is also certified kosher. All other items are relatively easy to find in kosher versions.