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7 Best Coffee Rub Recipes

Maryna Gray Maryna Gray • June 22, 2021

Looking for a new dry rub or meat marinade for grilling? Try coffee! Coffee rubs don't actually make meat taste like coffee; instead, the coffee complements the meat, adding the perfect punch of flavor. And combined with other ingredients and spices, a coffee rub can create the perfect mix of sweet, savory, and spicy flavors for any time of meat. Read on to see our favorite coffee rub recipes for steak, brisket, and more. 

1. Coffee and Cocoa Steak Rub

Recipe By: Bean Box


  • 2 tablespoons ground dark roast coffee
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Rub the steak with olive oil, salt and pepper.
  2. Combine the coffee, cocoa powder and cinnamon in a dish.
  3. Coat steak with mixture and let marinate or cook immediately.

2. Smoked Brisket Coffee Rub

Recipe By: Shawn Hill, The Grilling Dad


  • 1 tablespoon ground coffee
  • 1 tablespoon salt 
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons ancho chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Combine and rub onto the brisket before putting the meat on the smoker. 
  2. Hill, who also writes about other grilling recipes for brisket and ribs, recommends cooking a small brisket flat (about 4 to 4.5 lbs.) at 225 degrees until the meat reaches an internal temperature of 203 to get that melt-in-your-mouth tenderness. 

3. Brisket Coffee Rub

Recipe By: Michael Haas, AngryBBQ.com

  • 3/4 cup coarse kosher salt
  • 1 cup coarse black pepper
  • 1/3 cup coarse ground coffee
  • 1/4 cup onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon chilli powder
This is enough to fill a small shaker and use for added flavoring on brisket or tri-tip.  

4. Classic Coffee Rub 

Recipe By: Jessica DeMay, DishCrawl


  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons ground coffee 
  • 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder


Simply combine and rub on to your meat before grilling.

5. Robust Smokey Grilled Chicken Rub

Recipe By: Rebecca Pytell, Strength and Sunshine 


  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coffee 
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/8 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon chili powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon


  1. Combine all the spices together in a small bowl. 
  2. Rub the chicken breasts evenly. Allow them to marinate in the fridge or grill right away. 
  3. Cook the chicken on one side for 10 to 12 minutes, flip, then cook for an additional 10 to 12 minutes or until the chicken is completely cooked through.

    6. Easy DIY Steak Rub

    Recipe By: Rastelli's 


    • 1/4 cup brown sugar
    • 1 tablespoon paprika
    • 1 tablespoon black pepper
    • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
    • 1 tablespoon chili powder
    • 1 tablespoon onion powder
    • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
    • 1 teaspoon coriander
    • 1 teaspoon cayenne
    • 1 teaspoon coffee 


    Combine and coat meat. You can either store leftover rub in the freezer in a ziplock bag with air removed or in your cupboard in an air-tight container. You can also add Italian seasoning or any dried herb for extra flavor.  

    7. Chiminea Coffee Rub

    Recipe By: Dan Morris, Fire and Saw


    • 1 tablespoon pink Himalayan sea salt
    • 1 tablespoon of a quality instant coffee
    • 1 tablespoon hot paprika
    • 1 teaspoon medium chili powder
    • 1/2 tablespoon garlic powder
    • 1/2 tablespoon crushed coriander
    • 1/2 tablespoon onion powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (omit if you don't want extra heat)


    1. Combine all of your ingredients, being careful to keep any moisture out of the coffee rub until it's time to apply it to your meat. (The instant coffee will begin to dissolve, otherwise!)
    2. You can apply the rub to the chicken at any point before cooking, but it's a good idea to pat the chicken down with paper towels first. You can also apply some olive oil to the chicken before adding the rub; this will help the coffee rub stick to the meat. 

    Posted in: Coffee Recipes
    Tags: Recipe

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