Trend to (Maybe?) Try: Bulletproof Coffee

Move over, almond milk. The next big thing in niche coffee preparations is butter.

Stay with me.

According to my sources (Google), blending coffee with butter has been around for a long time in many parts of the world. Its alleged benefits include increased energy, mental clarity, and weight loss. Apparently its been used in Tibet for centuries as a tool to stay nourished and alert in harsh climates.

It seems counterintuitive that anything involving butter and non-plant-based saturated fat would catch on as a health or diet trend, but the science behind it is compelling. According to research, filling up on saturated fat first thing in the morning helps your body avoid starvation mode, aka hunger, throughout the rest of the day. Think of it as an investment for your appetite: pay now, enjoy dividends later. Taking this metaphor a step too far, that would make Tasti D-lite a junk bond.

After reading about this miracle beverage that recent health-media outlets have dubbed as “Bulletproof Coffee,” I decided to try it for myself. I cross-referenced a few recipes, and settled on the following formula:


1 cup coffee
1 tablespoon coconut oil
2 teaspoon ghee (aka clarified butter: when butter is rendered down, the fat and milk solids separate so ghee doesn’t have lactose)
Note: For those who avoid all dairy, only using coconut oil is also a viable alternative.


Blend the ingredients together. (I use a Vitamix.)

My first sip of bulletproof coffee was not pleasant. The buttery taste of ghee was overwhelmingly rich, and when I added Stevia into the mix (using sugar or Splenda seemed counterproductive to this wellness exercise), the result felt like a mouthful of cupcake frosting. Not in the good way. I couldn’t finish the cup.

The next day, I used only 1 teaspoon of ghee instead of the recommended 2 and ended up pleasantly surprised — it felt a lot like drinking a latte. I worked my way up each day to the original formula, and by the following week I found myself experiencing a lot of the promised benefits: my endurance during morning workouts was off the charts, and I remained full until midday. Granted, all of this could have been a placebo effect.

Since my initial trial I’ve tinkered with the original recipe a bit. I don’t measure out the ghee and coconut oil amounts exactly, and instead estimate the proper amounts based on how hungry I wake up or if I’m heading to the gym. If my appetite is particularly low, I’ll use only a small amount of coconut oil and no butter.

All in all, I recommend trying bulletproof coffee, if for no other reason than to realize you hate it, and thus saving the $7 that your local pretentious coffee shop is going to charge per cup when it hits their menu.

Or, you know, so you can really take ownership of this song:

— Sophie Milrom; Illustration by Charlotte Fassler

  • Carelia

    I never heard of this before!!!! Very interesting. But, for now, the butter left on my lips from my toasts should do it…lol


  • Kelly’s Gross-o

    A whole article on butter coffee and not one Paula Deen joke? Kudos for the restraint that must have taken.

  • grace kane

    sounds great…so long as there is some form of FOOD to start off the day as well…

  • MK

    There’s a coffeeshop by my parents’ house in Jersey that serves “Dutch Coffee” which is made with butter and cinnamon and who knows what else. It’s rich and fattening and delicious. I’ll have to try this healthier version, thanks!

  • Anita

    My hubby started doing this last month. It actually tastes really good. The caffeine seems to have longer staying power- and you don’t really get the coffee crash!

  • GapToothedGirl

    Hi, one of my best friend has a caffetteria in Camogli, she invented the most delicious coffe in the world, with ghee, and a secret weapon, an ingredient that last a trip to Il Bricco.
    xox, love Gap.

  • GooseChase

    Saw this just the other day, important to note the source though:

    Sounds like something definitely worth trying!

  • hanne

    hey sophie, it it a tea- or a tablespoon? the ingrediends say tablespoon, but in the text it says teaspoon… a tablespoon seems like quite much, but on the other hand, maybe the point is to have a really rich drink? i am just recommending it to my friend who likes to experiment with coffee and nutrition, and am wondering. thank you for the article though, i got soo into coconut oil after i researched everything about it following the man repeller oil pulling story!

    • Amelia Diamond


      • hanne

        thank you!

  • Jay

    I have mixed feelings about this. The first 2 times I tried BPC I absolutely loved it. The 3rd time, however… well, I’m just glad it was a weekend and I didn’t have to go into work. On the bright side I think I lost around 10 lbs so…

  • Eva

    butter (grass fed and pastured) is a SUPERFOOD! yay:)

  • anon

    yes yes grassfed butter is the best! im keto so i have this for breakfast every morning and it keeps me full and i dont feel the need to snack!!! the first time i tried it though i used salted butter, BIG mistake!!

  • Interesting, but how is this nutritionally different than adding cream? Why is adding cream to coffee “unhealthy” but this is considered “healthy”? Technically the only difference is that you’re removing the buttermilk component. Source:

  • AKR

    This is similar to the coffee with ghee and cardamom you can get at Ethiopian restaurants. So delicious!

  • pascmeow

    if anyone else fell for the magic bullet infomercial …. they are PERFECT for this.

  • Mae

    This sounds insane and wierd and now I’m curious. THANKS. Tomorrow morning my man is going to think I’ve gone nuts putting coconut oil in my coffee…

  • kellidanielle

    I drink coconut oil blended into my coffee every morning, so yummy and pretty filling! I used to add in a little bit of grass-fed butter instead of ghee, but I think it tastes sweeter and less, idk thick?, with just the coconut oil.

  • pamb

    My brother is Paleo, and he drinks this in the morning to help him along with his Intemittent Fasting (he’s a mish mosh of weight loss trends). He drinks a giant cup and is full until 2:00, when he eats lunch. In his opinion, it’s not worth doing unless you are Paleo-ish, because the extra fat would help you on top of the carbs you’re eating.

    I’m eating granola with almond milk.

  • Sara

    I tried it, using this recipe instead of the official BC recipe–whatevs–and I was pleasantly surprised at the results. Even on the first day, I felt energized and wasn’t hungry til midday. Worth a try.