Vegan Irish Cream (Keto Friendly)


This super yummy homemade vegan Irish cream is better than Baileys and it’s keto friendly too. Take just five minutes to stir up this silky liqueur with hints of chocolate, coffee and vanilla for a gathering of friends but don’t feel too bad if you simply can’t bring yourself to share it — it’s that delicious!

Keto vegan copycat Bailey's Irish cream poured into tumblers with ice.

I have loved Irish cream for as long as I have been an adult, I think, but it’s one of those drinks that’s not easy to have, even once in a while, because it’s loaded with fat and sugar. And after turning vegan I pretty much had to stop until Baileys came out with its almond milk based vegan Irish cream a few years back.

After I began eating low carb, that was out too. So right away I made a promise to myself to create a keto vegan Irish cream I could drink every once in a while with no guilt whatsoever.

Spirits can slow down weight loss on low carb diets by impacting ketosis, the metabolic process that burns fat for energy instead of carbs. But whiskey, along with vodka, gin, rum, brandy and tequila, has zero sugar and carbs, so it is okay to consume an alcoholic drink very occasionally (repeat, very occasionally) on a low carb diet.

Besides, I’m a working woman and mom to a feisty, argumentative teen. I desperately need that occasional drink to wind down and hold on to my sanity.

So I made myself a vegan keto Irish cream, loved it, and today I want to share it with you.

This is a creamy, thick, lush, luscious drink — it’s like sipping silk, and once you taste it you are sure to fall in love. You can add it to your vegan desserts or cocktails or pour it over coffee, but my favorite way to drink it is exactly how you see it in the pictures here–ice cold, on the rocks. Yummm.

Why you will love this vegan Irish cream

  • With notes of coffee, chocolate, vanilla and almond, this liqueur is to-die-for delicious. It’s impossible not to love Irish cream unless you’re a real downer, and this creamy vegan keto version has all of the deliciousness of any Irish cream, vegan or not, you’ve ever tasted.
  • It’s so simple to make. You need all of five minutes to toss the ingredients into a blender jar and push the button. No skills needed.
  • It can be everyone friendly. The heavy whipping cream I use is Silk’s heavy whipping cream, which is dairy-free, soy-free, nut-free and gluten-free. I do add some almond milk because it adds the right flavors to this drink and thins it out a bit. It is also one of the lowest carb non dairy milks. But if you are nut-free just go with any other non dairy milk that is relatively low carb.

Ingredients

Ingredients for vegan Irish cream on a gray background with text that says "ingredients for vegan irish cream".
  • ½ cup almond milk. With just one carb per one cup serving, almond milk is the keto-friendliest plant milk and it tastes yummy in this Irish cream. It also helps thin out the Irish cream a bit so it’s not so heavy and rich, while adding flavor.
  • ¾ cup vegan heavy whipping cream. I used the Silk brand, which has zero carbs. There are a few other choices on the market so feel free to use any you want. The whipping cream adds a nice smoothness and richness to the Irish cream and the fat shouldn’t worry someone that’s on a low carb, high fat diet. If you want to reduce the fat, however, switch the quantities of almond milk and whipping cream- ¾ cup almond milk and ½ cup whipping cream. You can also use only almond milk and leave out the cream for a healthier drink, but the Irish cream, in that case, won’t be as creamy and rich.
  • ½ cup Irish whiskey. A few Irish whiskeys on the market, including Jameson and Tullamore, are vegan and safe to use in a vegan Irish cream.
  • 1 teaspoon instant coffee granules. This adds a lovely, authentic flavor and a nice color to the Irish cream.
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder. Cocoa powder or cacao powder adds the chocolate element so critical to the flavor of Irish cream.
  • ⅓ cup erythritol. I use an erythritol monk fruit sweetener. You can swap out for any keto-approved sweetener. If you don’t want this to be keto you can use sugar or maple syrup as the sweetener.
  • 1 ½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract. This adds smoothness and richness to the liqueur.
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract. Also for more original flavor, although you can skip this if you don’t have it, or use a tablespoon of amaretto liqueur instead.
Irish cream in glasses and pitcher.

How to make vegan Irish cream

  • Place all the ingredients in a blender. Blend on high for 15 seconds.
  • Chill before serving.

Storage instructions

  • The vegan Irish cream can be refrigerated for up to a week.

Frequently asked questions

How many carbs are in one serving of this vegan Irish cream?

There is one gram of carb in each serving.

What does Irish cream taste like?

Irish cream is smooth and creamy with notes of vanilla, chocolate, coffee and, of course, the fruity, floral aroma of the Irish whiskey. Baileys vegan Irish cream has a hint of almonds because it is made with almond milk.

Is Irish whiskey vegan?

Most whiskeys on the market, including Jameson and Tullamore, are vegan and safe to use in a vegan Irish cream. If you plan on using another brand, you can check its vegan friendliness at Barnivore.

Can I make this vegan Irish cream recipe with coconut milk?

I’ve tried this recipe with coconut milk and I honestly don’t love the strong coconut flavor in the Irish cream. But if you don’t mind it go ahead and use it.

I don’t have Irish whiskey. Can I use another whiskey?

Unless you are an Irish cream purist you can use nearly any whiskey in this recipe with great results. I’ve frequently added Scotch or bourbon depending on what I have on hand and it always tastes amazing.

How frequently can you drink alcohol on a keto or low carb diet?

This is a question I researched thoroughly when I started eating low carb and the jury is still out. Some say it’s okay to have a drink a day, others warn no more than a drink a week.
I can only speak from my experience and I have found that a single alcoholic drink, which I usually have on Saturday evening, doesn’t really hurt me so long as I don’t follow it up with bingeing on carby foods over the weekend. If you are on a low carb weight loss journey you will need to see what works for you by trial and error.
Keep in mind that what you drink also matters–beer has lots of carbs, so avoid it on a keto diet (unless you can find a low carb beer). Most distilled spirits like whiskey, vodka, gin, tequila and rum have no carbs, so they are okay. Wine has carbs but fewer so than beer (about four grams per five oz serving), so you could fit it in if you are careful with the rest of your diet.

Vegan Irish cream being poured into glasses with ice from a pitcher.
Vegan Irish cream being poured into whiskey tumblers with ice.

Vegan Irish Cream (Keto Friendly)

You will fall in love with this keto friendly and vegan Irish cream! It has exquisite notes of chocolate, coffee, vanilla and almond and it’s so smooth, creamy and luscious.

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Course: Drinks

Cuisine: Irish

Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian

Keyword: Vegan Irish Cream

Servings: 8 servings

Calories: 195kcal

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Nutrition

Serving: 2oz (approx) | Calories: 195kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 0.2g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 11g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Sodium: 21mg | Potassium: 16mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 0.2g | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 0.1mg

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