Homemade Smoky Coffee Dry Rub

Homemade Smoky Coffee Dry Rub


Don’t buy pre-made spice mixes when you can make your own in seconds! This caffeinated dry rub features ground coffee and smoked paprika to produce an incredible flavor for tofu, roasted vegetables, popcorn, and more. 


Lifting out the coffee dry rub with a spoon 


A Fabulous Dry Rub with Kick

We are big proponents of making your own spice mixes at home. It’s more economical and usually the spices are more vibrant as well. 

Although you will need quite a few ingredients for this coffee rub, its robust flavor will make it all worthwhile- we promise! 

This dry rub is earthy and smoky with just a little bit of heat. Yep, we know you are going to love this one and you will want to put it on roasted vegetables, crispy tofu, faux vegan meat and so much more! 


Ingredients for homemade smoky coffee dry rub on a plate



  • Ground Coffee Aromatic ground coffee is an amazing base for a spice mix. Coffee’s sweetness and acidity is wonderful when blending with savory spices. 
  • Smoked Paprika  –  The intense smoky flavor in smoked paprika instantly deepens the flavor of this spice mix. 
  • Garlic and Onion PowderGarlic and onion powder adds a subtle caramel flavor, in addition to deeper roasted flavors. 
  • Brown Sugar & Salt  –  Sugar and salt are a great pair. They help bring out the flavors of all of the other ingredients. 
  • Chipotle Chili Pepper  –   This spicy ground powder gives this mix a mild spiciness that is not overpowering. 
  • Dried Thyme and Mustard Seed  –  Floral and peppery, dried thyme and mustard seed both bring an element of earthiness to this mix. 
  • Dried Lemon Peel  –  Citrusy and bright, Lemon peel provides a wonderful pop of clean lemon essence. 

Mixing the necessary spices in a bowl with a small whisk


FAQ & Smoky Coffee Dry Rub Recipe Tips:

  • Can this dry rub be made without all of the spices listed? 

    • Yes. However, in our opinion you will have a more complex flavor profile if you use all of the recommended ingredients. 
  • How long will this coffee rub stay fresh? 

    • This spice mix will last approximately 2 months for peak flavor. It can be used after that point, but it might taste less vibrant. (Just think of those cinnamon sticks in the back of your spices…😂)
  • Make your own dried lemon peel 

  • Grind your own favorite coffee for a customized rub 

    • Try experimenting with both light and dark roasts for this dry rub. The type of coffee you use will alter the flavor considerably. We suggest starting with your own favorite coffee and going from there.  Additionally, decaf coffee can also be used if preferred for a caffeine free version. 


Homemade smoky coffee dry rub on a spoon


Endless Possibilities

Although we love to coat vegan chicken wings with this homemade coffee rub, it can even be sprinkled on popcorn. So get creative and find your own favorite uses with this easy to make spice mix! 🥦🍗🍿🥔🍿

Finally, if you have made this smoky coffee dry rub, we would love to hear what you think! Please comment down below  and be sure to rate the recipe. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Thanks so much!


Ingredients for homemade smoky coffee dry rub on a plate Mixing the necessary spices in a bowl with a small whisk

The mixed dry rub in a large bowl after mixing Homemade smoky coffee dry rub in a bowl with a spoon

Lifting out the coffee dry rub with a spoon Homemade smoky coffee dry rub on a spoon



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Lifting out the coffee dry rub with a spoon

Homemade Smoky Coffee Dry Rub

  • Author: Meatless Makeovers
  • Prep Time: 2 min.
  • Cook Time: 0 min.
  • Total Time: 2 min.
  • Yield: Approx. 1 Cup
  • Category: Spice Mix, Dry Rub
  • Method: Stir
  • Cuisine: American


A robust dry rub with some perk. This homemade smoky coffee dry rub is great on faux meat, tofu, roasted vegetables, and more!


  • 1/4 Cup Ground Coffee
  • 2 Tbsp Smoked Paprika
  • 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Salt
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Onion Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Chipotle Chili Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Dried Thyme
  • 2 tsp Dried Lemon Peel
  • 2 Tsp Ground Mustard Seed


  1. Place all of the ingredients into a large bowl. Using a whisk or large spoon, stir the mixture until well combined and all chunks are broken up. 
  2. Use to coat tofu, tempeh, or any other “meat” you are grilling or air frying. Store in an airtight container for up to two months.


  • The equipment listed above contains affiliate links to products that we personally use, love, and recommend!

Keywords: Homemade Coffee Dry Rub Recipe, Smoky Coffee Dry Rub, Homemade Spice Mix

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