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Saiki K Coffee Jelly – Easy Japanese Dessert Recipe

Saiki K coffee jelly or kohii zerii is a Japanese-inspired dessert that is featured in a popular anime show called “Disastrous Life of Saiki K”. This popular dessert is served in individual cups with swirls of whipped cream or cut into cubes with a drizzle of condensed milk.

A bowl of coffee jelly with half-and-half and copper spoons.

It is a dessert that all coffee lovers will appreciate. Soft, silky, smooth jelly flavored with your favorite coffee, this is the grown-up version of your childhood Jell-o treat. If you love the flavors of tiramisu and affogato, you will love coffee jelly. It is a perfect blend of bitter and sweet, smooth and creamy.

Though coffee jelly is not a new concept, the popularity of this dessert has soared along with the love for this Japanese show. The central character, Saiki Kusuo, loves coffee jelly with whipped cream, contributing to the dessert’s growing fanbase. 

Japanese coffee jelly is usually served in individual cups, with swirls of whipped cream or cut into cubes with sweet condensed milk on top. You can also serve it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a drizzle of sweetened heavy cream. It is a perfect sweet treat to enjoy on a hot summer day and serve in summer parties and potlucks.

Speaking of Japanese treats, another one of my favorites is matcha. I even made a list of the best Starbucks green tea drinks you can try!

Three glasses of chilled saiki k coffee jelly on a terra cotta plate.

Everyday Simple Approach

We are transforming lives with the Everyday Simple Approach that promises to help you find joy in homemaking with quick, easy, and affordable recipes and tutorials. Let’s see how this recipe stacks up.

  • Simple ingredients – Easily available shelf-stable ingredients.
  • Short prep and cooking time – Only about ten minutes of active time.
  • Amazing flavor – Strong coffee flavor.
  • Budget-friendly – Less than three dollars per serving!
  • Basic kitchen equipment – You only need a saucepan and a baking dish to chill the jelly.
  • Easy-to-follow directions – Just five simple steps.

How to Make Saiki K Coffee Jelly

For now, let’s focus on making this delicious coffee jelly. Let’s find out how to turn your regular everyday coffee into a perfect sweet treat.

Ingredients You Need

Saiki k-inspired coffee jelly ingredients to make it at home.

Here is what you need

  • Gelatin powder – Use flavorless gelatin powder.
  • Water
  • Brewed black coffee – Strong extra-strength coffee using a drip cone, moka pot, or French press rather than a regular drip machine.
  • Sugar – White sugar.

Ingredient Substitutions

Even though this is such a simple recipe, you might be missing one of the key ingredients. Review the recommendations here for quick and clever substitutions.

Here are suggested substitutions:

  • Gelatin powder – You can substitute ½ tablespoon of agar agar powder for one tablespoon of gelatin powder. Food52 has a great breakdown on this plant-based substitute which is worth reading if you haven’t already. Agar powder is also called kanten powder in Japanese.
  • Brewed black coffee – Many types of coffee can be used as a substitution to brewed coffee. The same amount of French press or pour-over coffee will do. The other option is to use two expresso shots mixed with water to make two cups of black coffee. You can also use instant coffee to brew a strong coffee for the jelly. Decaf coffee is also a great option if you suffer from caffeine sensitivity.
  • Sugar – You can leave the sugar out entirely or use alternatives like coconut sugar, palm sugar, or monk fruit sweetener.

The taste of coffee jelly will largely depend on the type of coffee you use. The brand of ground coffee you use also matters, because the better the quality, the better the taste. Stronger coffee will give you deliciously bitter, dark brown jelly. A weaker coffee will give you translucent, light brown coffee jelly.

The best way to make this would be using freshly ground coffee beans brewed in an expresso machine.

Two glasses of saiki k coffee jelly ice cream on a wooden tray.

Variations

Want to add your own spin? Make these fun variations and stretch this recipe into more delightful renditions.

Try these saiki k coffee jelly recipe variations:

  • Coconut water coffee jelly – Instead of using water, use fresh or canned coconut water.
  • Mocha coffee jelly – Add a tablespoon of cacao or cocoa powder to the black coffee to make a chocolate-flavored coffee jelly.
  • Latte coffee jelly – Instead of using black coffee to make the jelly, use two expresso shots topped with milk to make cafe latte jelly.
  • Pumpkin spice coffee jelly – Add a pinch of pumpkin pie spice to the coffee while making the coffee jello.
  • Mint coffee jelly – Add a ¼ teaspoon of mint extract to give this coffee jelly a holiday twist.
  • Tea jelly – Use brewed tea or matcha tea jelly. You could also make a fun chai tea jelly.

Step-By-Step Instructions

This dessert needs very little time to make. However, you do need to work quickly and precisely. It’s our favorite way to turn leftover coffee into a delectable sweet dessert.

Follow these simple directions, and you can’t go wrong!

A bowl of gelatin blooming with a spoon on a marble stone.
Bloom gelatin.
A person holding a cup sugar over a pot of coffee.
Brew coffee, then mix in the sugar and simmer.
A person is adding gelatin to coffee into a pot.
Add the gelatin.
Stainless steel whisk in small sauce pan of coffee.
Whisk well to combine.
A glass dish with chilled saiki k coffee jelly and a spatula in it.
Chill the liquid, then cut it into small cubes.
A glass of with saiki k coffee jelly cubes in it on fabric background.
Portion cubes into a small serving glass. Then top with whipped cream, condensed milk, or half-and-half.

Step 1: Bloom Gelatin

Mix the gelatin powder with ¼ cup of water in a small bowl. Stir as quickly as you can to hydrate the powder, so there are no dry clumps left out of the water. The gelatin starts to set immediately. Add an additional teaspoon of water if needed.

Try to mix so it’s smooth without clumps of dry powder, but if you can’t get it all, that’s still ok.

Set the gelatin aside to sit for a few minutes and bloom. The bowl will go from liquid goo to a jelly-like solid.

Step 2: Brew Coffee

Make your extra strong coffee using a drip cone, moka pot, or French press rather than a regular drip machine. 

Measure out two cups of coffee. Because we are working with gelatin, it is essential to be precise about measurements.

You can also use two expresso shots, diluting it with water till the total measurement reaches two cups.

Step 3: Heat the Coffee

Heat the coffee and sugar together in a medium saucepan until it comes to a simmer.

Turn off the heat and add the gelatin mixture.

Whisk well until the gelatin completely dissolves. You may need to be vigorous to break apart gelatin clumps. Continue until smooth and fully dissolved.

Step 4: Chill

Cool for 10 minutes at room temperature before pouring the coffee mixture into an 8×8-inch square baking dish. You could also set the liquid in silicone ice cube trays or chocolate molds.

Refrigerate for at least four hours or until set.

Once the coffee jello is set, cut it into half-inch cubes or remove from the mold.

Alternatively, you can make individual portions that are great for a crowd by pouring the coffee jelly liquid into single-serving cups and chilling. Divide the liquid between all cups evenly, and set them on a plate or tray to make it easy to move so many dishes around. Once chilled, then serve with a mountain of whipped cream or a scoop of chai ice cream.

Three glasses of saiki k coffee jelly on a terra cotta plate.

Expert Tips

  • Taste and adjust the strength of coffee and sweetener as needed. Take a small sip before you add the gelatin. That way, you will know exactly what the jello will taste like once it sets.
  • Measure precisely – Making jello, like baking, calls for precise measurements. The texture of the jelly will vary depending on the amount of liquid you have used.
  • Leave the jelly alone – Once you have added the hot jelly mixture to the mold, leave the jelly alone for a few hours. Do not mix it or disturb it in any way, and it will set perfectly with the ideal wobble.
  • Fun shapes – Use fun molds in the shape of hearts, round balls, or characters to add oomph to your dessert.

How to Store Coffee Jelly

Store leftover jelly, separate from any topping, in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Keep it cold and do not reheat the jelly. It will lose all its texture.

Can I make Saiki K Coffee Jelly ahead of time?

Yes, you can make the coffee jelly ahead of time and chill it in the refrigerator till it’s time to serve.

Can I freeze saiki coffee jelly?

I do not recommend freezing the jelly. When the jelly is frozen, it forms water crystals, which completely ruins the texture of the jelly.

A copper spoon full of saiki k coffee jelly.

What to serve with Saiki coffee jelly

Coffee jelly is usually served in cups or cut into cubes. The popular way is to add a dollop of whipped cream to it.

Another popular way to serve this is with a tablespoon of condensed milk and a few leaves of mint as garnish.

However, you can serve it in a lot of other fun ways. Here are some of my suggestions:

  • Top the cubes of coffee jelly with a scoop of ice cream of your choice.
  • Add the coffee jelly cubes to hot milk and enjoy it like a frappuccino.
  • Add dairy-free whipped cream or sweetened coconut cream on top of coffee jelly cubes.
  • Add the coffee jello cubes to an iced latte and make a boba-esque cold coffee drink.
  • Add a twist to your hot cocoa by topping it with cubes of coffee jelly and watch them melt in.
  • Make your own version of a coffee martini or a white Russian with cubes of coffee jelly.

More Coffee Recipes To Try

Love coffee? Here are more coffee-based recipes to try

If you make this Saiki K Coffee Jelly, please leave a review. I appreciate each 5-star rating and review comment! 

Coffee jello in a glass with milk.

Copycat Saiki K Coffee Jelly Recipe (Coffee Jello)

Jessica Haggard
Saiki K coffee jelly or kohii zerii is a Japanese-inspired dessert that is featured in a popular anime show called “Disastrous Life of Saiki K”. This popular dessert is served in individual cups with swirls of whipped cream or cut into cubes with a drizzle of condensed milk.
5 from 9 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Additional Time 4 hours
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Course Desserts
Cuisine Copycat
Servings 8
Calories 9 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon gelatin powder
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 cups brewed black coffee
  • 1 tablespoon sugar

Instructions
 

  • Mix the gelatin powder with ¼ cup of water in a small bowl.
  • Heat the coffee and sugar together in a small saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a simmer.
  • Cool for ten minutes at room temperature before pouring the coffee jelly mixture into an 8×8-inch square baking dish. Refrigerate for at least four hours or until set.
  • Once the coffee jello is set, cut it into ½-inch cubes.
  • Serve in stemware or individual bowls. Top with your favorite topping choice between whipped cream, condensed milk, or vanilla ice cream.

Notes

  • Taste and adjust the strength of coffee and sweetener as needed. Take a small sip before you add the gelatin. That way, you will know exactly what the jello will taste like once it sets.
  • Measure precisely – Making jello, like baking, calls for precise measurements. The texture of the jelly will vary depending on the amount of liquid you have used.
  • Leave the jelly alone – Once you have added the hot jelly mixture to the mold, leave the jelly alone for a few hours. Do not mix it or disturb it in any way and it will set perfectly with the ideal wobble.
  • Fun shapes – Use fun molds in the shape of hearts, round balls, or characters to add oomph to your dessert.
Store leftover jelly, separate from any topping, in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Nutrition

Serving: 1gCalories: 9kcalCarbohydrates: 2gProtein: 1gSodium: 3mgSugar: 2g
Keyword coffee jelly saiki k, how to make coffee jelly, saiki coffee jelly, saiki k coffee jelly
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Recipe Rating




Hayley

Monday 4th of September 2023

We've got a heatwave in the UK right now so this is the perfect recipe to sip on! The coffee jelly came out perfect - thanks for the recipe!

Easy Homemade Life

Tuesday 5th of September 2023

Perfect coffee alternative for those extra hot days. Thanks for the review!

Lauren Harris

Sunday 3rd of September 2023

This coffee jelly is such a unique recipe! I have had some extra gelatin for awhile now that I wasn't sure how I was going to use, but I have i figured out now!

Easy Homemade Life

Tuesday 5th of September 2023

Perfect. Hope you enjoy, Lauren.

Dennis

Sunday 3rd of September 2023

I love coffee and can't wait to try your dessert! It looks delicious!

Easy Homemade Life

Tuesday 5th of September 2023

Thanks for the comment, Dennis. Let us know how it turns out.

Tristin

Saturday 2nd of September 2023

Me and my husband are huge coffee lovers, so this is a must try recipe! Love that it looks like a fancy dessert but is simple to make!

Easy Homemade Life

Tuesday 5th of September 2023

Hope you find it to be easy. Thanks, Tristin.

Tammy

Friday 1st of September 2023

Coffee jello?! Just when I thought I had found a way to enjoy coffee in every form, I've found yet another! What a fun drink and one I cannot wait to now try :D

Easy Homemade Life

Tuesday 5th of September 2023

Truth for us coffee lovers, Lol. Hope you love it!

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