Ree Drummond’s Secret Ingredient for Iced Coffee Is Totally Unexpected

iced coffee with cayenne 728

We don’t mean to brag, but we consider ourselves professionals when it comes to cold brew. Name an iced coffee upgrade, and we’ve probably sipped it: Oat milk, lemonade and a sprinkle of cinnamon are kind of old hat. We’ve seen it all…or so we thought.

But when we sat down with Ree Drummond to talk about her new line of Purina dog treats, we were surprised by her secret ingredient for the most irresistible iced coffee ever. She adds—wait for it—cayenne pepper.

We know, we also thought it sounded crazy at first. But Ree told us it’s a just kicked-up spin on the morning pick-me-up that she serves every day at her Pawhuska, Oklahoma, restaurant, The Pioneer Woman Mercantile. And now that we think about it, the spicy addition makes sense. Coffee has bold and toasty flavor notes to begin with. (That’s why it goes so well with pumpkin spice, right?) A sprinkle of cayenne brings out those notes even more, while adding a little bit of heat. Just don’t add so much cayenne that your mouth is on fire…

Drummond even has a recipe for her caffeinated innovation (it’s called the Spicy Cowgirl, of course) that features not just coffee, but also chocolate syrup and whipped cream. You'll need something sweet to complement all that spice, right? At least that's what we tell ourselves.


Senior Food Editor

Katherine Gillen is PureWow’s senior food editor. She’s a writer, recipe developer and food stylist with a degree in culinary arts and professional experience in New York City...