The latte is a beloved drink all over the world, and it’s easy to see why. It’s a simple combination of coffee and milk, but it becomes one of the best, most delicious drinks on Earth.
Even with all the different ways you can customize a latte, it’s still pretty easy to make. Here’s how to make a latte at home.
What is a latte?
A latte is a drink that is prepared with espresso, steamed milk, and foamed milk. Usually, this espresso is made from dark roasted coffee beans. The process of making a latte at home is fairly simple and doesn’t require any special equipment.
There are several different variations to the latte. Depending on the type of drink you are making, there could be some slight differences in the way you prepare your latte.
You can sweeten your latte using various add-ins, and adding an extra shot of espresso is done regularly. More on this below!
What ingredients are in a latte?
There are only two ingredients needed to make a latte; espresso and milk. A latte uses a 1:4 ratio of coffee to milk. Usually, whole milk or lower-fat milk is used to make a latte; however, you can also choose any dairy-free alternative.
The options are endless with the ingredients in a latte. Below, I’ll talk more about the coffee to use and how to froth your milk, so you have all the information to make a proper latte at home!
How to make a latte at home
There are multiple ways you can make a latte at home. But the general guideline is as followed:
- Brewing espresso basis.
- Steaming and foaming milk.
- Pouring the steamed milk into the glass with the foamed milk on top.
- Leaving this for 30 seconds and then pouring the espresso in the glass.
That’s really all there is to it. However, if you want to make a cafe-quality latte at home, there are a few things you need to know.
I’ve listed the step-by-step recipe below, where I explain these steps in-depth.
But first, I’ll talk more about the best espresso to use, different ways you can get that lovely layer of foamed milk, and much more!
What is the best coffee for a latte?
If you want to make the best latte at home, it’s best to use a strong brewed coffee like espresso as the basis.
This will give your latte a robust flavor profile that will help cut through the sweet flavors of the milk and any add-ins that you might add.
Tip: Looking for the best coffee beans to make a latte at home? Check out my in-depth guide here!
Can you make a latte with regular coffee?
You can make delicious lattes using regular coffee if you prefer to use this. It’s best to use a strong-brewed coffee for the most balanced latte. Brewing coffee with a French press is one of the brewing techniques I recommend.
Although there are multiple ways to make strong coffee, the French press has a unique coffee flavor that works great with the amount of milk used in a latte.
Because the French press is a technique where you steep the coffee ground and hot water, it creates a full-bodied flavor.
You can also use a pour over technique like Chemex or Hario V60 as the basis for your latte. If you’re going to use one of these techniques, it’s best to use a darker roasted coffee bean.
Medium roasted and dark roasted coffee beans have a much stronger flavor, which is perfect for this recipe.
Do you need espresso to make a latte?
You don’t need espresso to make a latte. You can also use strong-brewed coffee as the basis for this drink. Using a darker roasted coffee bean and a French press to make the coffee works great for this.
Most coffee shops use an espresso machine to make their espresso. At home, however, you can use various other techniques to make espresso-like coffee. They’re as followed:
- Brew your coffee with an AeroPress.
- You can brew espresso with a Moka pot.
- If you want to, you can also use your Nespresso or Keurig machine to brew the espresso coffee.
As you can see, there are many ways to make this coffee at home, which is great because you don’t have to go out and buy fancy equipment to make amazing coffee.
How to froth milk for a latte?
For the most part, a latte is made up of milk. This is why it’s essential to know how to froth milk at home. Below, I’ve listed a few ways to froth milk for a latte:
- Using the steaming wand on your espresso machine
- Using a milk frother
- Heating your milk and whisking until frothy.
If you have an espresso machine at home, you can pull a shot of espresso from your machine and froth your milk at the same time. This is the easiest and less time-consuming way to froth your milk.
The next best way to froth milk at home is using a milk frother. I’m using a Nespresso Aeroccino milk frother, but you can use any milk frother you have at home. The milk will look like this:
This is an effortless way to froth your milk as you only have to press one button and wait for a moment. In the meantime, you can finish that amazing espresso brew!
If you have neither of the equipment mentioned above, the next best thing is heating your milk in a small saucepan. Then, after it’s warm enough, start vigorously whisking with a side-to-side motion until your milk is all frothed up.
Tip: Do you want more information about frothing your milk? Check out my in-depth guide here!
Now that you have all the information you need to start making this amazing recipe at home, let’s jump in:
How to Make a Latte
This easy-to-make latte recipe is the perfect way to start your day.
- 3/4 cup (0.18 l) of whole milk
- One espresso shot
- Start brewing your espresso coffee using a technique of choice. I used the AeroPress to brew the espresso for this recipe.
- While your espresso is brewing away, start frothing your milk.
- You can start to froth your milk, so it's nice and fluffy and has a foamy layer.
- Once your milk is finished, pour it into a tall glass of choice.
- Leave the milk to sit in the glass for about 30 seconds. The waiting time will separate the milk layers and will create a cool layered effect.
- Then, slowly pour your espresso into the glass.
Your latte is done! I suggest serving it with a long spoon so you can stir the foamed milk layer through the rest of the drink.
Remember, you can also use regular brewed coffee as the basis for this drink.
Do you prefer a stronger-tasting latte? Then you can add a second espresso shot.
If you want to sweeten your latte, feel free to add the sweetener you like the best.
A few add-ins that are worth trying are vanilla syrup, cinnamon dolce syrup, and simple syrup.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 110Total Fat: 5.9gSaturated Fat: 3/4gUnsaturated Fat: 1.4gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 73mgCarbohydrates: 8.3gSugar: 9.6gProtein: 5.9g
Can you put ice in a latte?
Before we close off this article, let’s go over one frequently asked question; can you put ice in a latte?
Yes, you can! This is called an iced latte, which is a cold coffee drink made using espresso shots, cold foamed milk, ice cubes and can be sweetened with various add-ins of choice.
For more information about how to make an iced latte at home, check out my other recipe here!
Wow, there you have it — all the information you need to make a fantastic latte at home. A latte looks really nice with the different layers, so make sure to use the proper techniques to make one yourself.
I went over different ways to froth milk at home, which you can use — not only for this recipe — but for many more coffee recipes on this blog.
If you want to try out more coffee recipes, you can check them out by clicking on one of the links below. These recipes are also easy to make, so it’s the perfect way to start the day.
What add-ins are your favorite for this latte recipe? Let me know by leaving a comment down below. If you have any other questions regarding coffee, you can also contact me directly by pressing the “Contact Me” button at the top!