Think outside the cup with these alternative recipes that are guaranteed to supercharge your coffee fix

Coffee: bringing motivation to sleepy mornings for decades. Nothing beats the rich scent of freshly brewed coffee with its smoky, rich aromas that stir up the senses into a dancing frenzy. If loving coffee is wrong, we don’t want to be right.


But did you know you could put your leftover coffee to excellent use by adding it a whole range of dishes? Simply freeze leftovers in an ice tray and chuck them into anything from stews to desserts to add depth to flavours. We guarantee this will be your new secret weapon in the kitchen – don't worry, your secret's safe with us. 


Take your coffee love to the next level with these sweet and savoury recipes that are sure to revolutionise your cooking game.


1. Coffee bacon

What do you get when you combine two of your favourite breakfast items in one taste-sensation matrimony? Coffee bacon. This more-ish snack can be used as a garnish, thrown into salads or chomped away at on its own. Sweet 'n' smoky – what more could you ask for?


2. Magic coffee cake

If you're not already acquainted, the ‘magic’ in magic cakes is the use of loose cake batter to create a three-layered cake. There’s all sorts of wonderful chemistry at work here, so put your feet up and let the baking do its thing. Easy as... cake! This one is already richly infused with coffee, but if you're feeling especially indulgent you can enjoy it with your fave cup of Joe too.


3. Spag bol with a coffee twist

This little twist on the classic spag bol will have your taste buds dancing. Once you add coffee, you'll never go back. You only need a touch in savoury dishes to enhance the flavours without overpowering. Add in just a teaspoon of instant coffee (dissolved in water first) to the sauce and everyone will be begging you for the secret ingredient.


4. Dates with coffee and cardamom

Dates with coffee and cardamom

Via: Sainsbury's Magazine/Photo: Phillip Webb 

This deliciously exotic dish is the perfect dessert if you're not ready to wrap up the dinner party. Espresso-strength coffee-soaked dates laced with the distinct flavour of cardamom makes for an easy-to-make yet impressive little number. We suggest combining with a generous dollop of Greek yogurt – or, if you fancy something a little sweeter, vanilla bean ice cream also works a treat. Yum.


5. Coffee-rubbed pork ribs

Smoky, juicy barbecue-style ribs – our mouths are watering already. Who said ribs were just for summer? Nonsense. We see no reason not to knock up this irresistible dish any time of year to entertain friends... or just for your own eating pleasure. 


6. Coffee and walnut cake

You can't go wrong with a slice of the ultimate classic – coffee and walnut cake is a reliable afternoon fix for all your coffee cravings. With all its buttery, sponge-like glory, we're not sure we can stop at just one slice. You know what goes perfectly with this one, don't you? Starts with 'c', ends with 'e'.


7. Brazilian beef stew

It might seem odd to throw coffee into your stew but trust us, it works. Not only the does the bitterness of coffee add depth of flavour, but it also goes surprisingly well with beef. Don't believe us? Try this hearty coffee and beef stew recipe for yourself and see.


8. Coffee panna cotta with coffee caramel sauce

panna cotta

Via: Sainsbury's Magazine/Photo: Brett Stevens

Oooh, we like. Double-dose on your coffee love with this sophisticated little dessert. Serve at the end of a meal to impress your mates and keep them going for hours – unless you don't want to entertain for hours, of course. In which case, do a secret swap from caffeine to decaf.


9. Coffee and spiced rub salmon tacos

Get yourselves on board with the taco-trend with this coffee-inspired salmon taco dish. Proving its versatility once again, coffee works with both fish and meat dishes. Add coffee to spices to make a delicious rub and grill, bake in the oven or barbecue to get a gorgeous crispy glaze. Serve with coffee-infused tequila and you've got a Mexican party on your hands. Arriba!


10. Oatmeal chocolate chunk salted coffee caramel apple skillet cookie

This exquisitely large solo cookie couldn't be easier to make. Chuck all the mixed ingredients into an iron skillet, stick on the stove and leave it to work its magic. Once done, serve warm and break ceremoniously to devour with friends or family. We dare you to save some for later. Impossible. 


11. Vegan chocolate coffee ice cream sandwiches 

Chocolate and coffee go hand in hand in this dead easy recipe, which is also vegan-friendly. Bonus. If you've baked them earlier in the day, give the cookies a quick 20-second whizz in the microwave to serve them soft and chewy just before the ice cream is sandwiched in. We're obsessed – more please.


12. Coffee-rubbed prime rib roast with roasted garlic gorgonzola butter

Two tablespoons of ground coffee go into this magnificent roast, adding some extra zing to an intensely flavoured spice rub. All kinds of delicious and makes an impressive showstopper at the dinner table.