It’s easy to fall in love with the silky smooth texture and indulgent taste of a well-crafted latte. Creating the perfect latte at home may seem out of reach, but with some basic equipment and a little practice, achieving café-quality lattes at home is absolutely possible. Our classic latte recipe shows you how.
No espresso? Be sure to read our tips at the bottom for making lattes at home without an espresso machine.
Espresso and steamed milk: it sounds simple until you learn that several other drinks – like cappuccinos, flat whites, and cortados – have the exact same ingredients. So what makes a latte a latte and not, say, a cappuccino?
Lattes have more milk than other espresso-based drinks, usually a ratio of 1:4 or more. While a cappuccino may only have 4 oz of milk, a latte usually has 8-12 oz. The texture of the milk is another distinguishing factor. While a cappuccino has a thick layer of airy foam, a latte is topped with only a thin layer of foam and consists mostly of steamed milk.Can you make a latte without an espresso machine?
Yes and no. Technically, a latte includes espresso, but brewing a few ounces of extra strong coffee can create a similar, still enjoyable drink. If you have an Aeropress or Moka Pot, these coffee makers are ideal for making pseudo-espresso. Use about 18g of finely ground beans to create 4 oz of very strong coffee. Resist the temptation to use only 2 oz of water as you would for a true espresso shot. Without the high-pressure brewing of an espresso machine, you’ll need the full 4 oz to properly extract the flavor from the beans and avoid the weak, sour taste of under extracted coffee.Can you froth milk without a steaming wand?
If you don’t have an espresso machine or if your espresso machine doesn’t have a steaming wand, you can achieve similar results by heating your milk on the stove and using a battery-powered milk frother. Follow a similar technique of submerging and angling the frother to create a vortex and achieve the smoothest froth possible. The texture will likely be more bubbly and less silky than steamed milk but still enjoyable.
Other techniques include frothing warm milk in a french press, a blender, or with a handheld mixer.
We recommend savoring every last sip at the perfect 135℉ in your Ember Mug².