How to Make a Latte ( with & without espresso machine )

When life gives you lemons…make a latte.

I know that lattes sound super complicated, but they are not. In fact, today I’d like to encourage you to have a very relaxed and traditional approach to lattes…Because in the real world, latte is just “coffee with milk”. And all you need to make a good latte, is fresh ingredients and a very simple and classic latte recipe.

That being said, below you’ll find two recipes: first, the traditional latte recipe that you can easily make with your espresso machine if you have one at home. Second, a cafe au lait – a latte recipe that uses regular coffee.

how to make a latte

Coffee latte is made from 1 espresso shot and significant amount of steamed milk. The proper coffee to milk ratio for a latte is: 1/3 of espresso and 2/3 of steamed milk. You can even use 1/4 of espresso and 3/4 of steamed milk.

But, most of the lattes served at coffee shops are made with too much milk. That’s why I love making my own latte at home. I always start with a double espresso shot – 2 oz. And, since I love my lattes sweet and tasty, I normally use 6 oz steamed milk.

Latte: espresso + milk

My basic latte recipe and for a good reason (use as is, or as a base for pumpkin spice or vanilla lattes).
Prep Time: 5 minutes, 1 serving, 8 oz

2 oz espresso
6 oz milk

1. pull out 1 double espresso shot – 2 oz. Go for that rich dark brown espresso color with nice golden cream on top.
2. pour 6 oz cold milk into the steam pitcher and foam the milk just slightly. We want that nice velvety milk texture and not the microfoam, like when making cappuccinos.
3. let the steamed milk settle for a few seconds and pour over your espresso.

Right now,  the cafe au lait. This recipe is really simple and leaves you with no excuses not to make a latte this weekend! For this recipe we’re going to use regular drip coffee. You can use any available brewing method: drip coffee maker, French press, pour over or Keurig.

Cafe au Lait : regular coffee + milk

prep time: 3 minutes, 1 serving , 12 oz
1 cup freshly brewed coffee
1/2 cup milk
sugar to taste

1. brew 1 cup strong black coffee
2. heat up the milk until it’s steaming
3. froth the milk with the milk frother or just give it a nice beat with the whisk until you see those nice small bubbles
4. add milk to your coffee, leave it to cool for, like 5 seconds and enjoy!

And that’s my idea of a perfect afternoon treat…



  1. Alex @ Searching for Happy says

    Thanks! I’m not a coffee drinker myself, but if I wake my wife up with a latte I might win the husband of the year award!

    • Danijela says

      Hello, Alex. I am sure she would love that. Latte is just perfect for the morning cup. Thanks for stopping by. :)

  2. Louise says

    I love latte! Thanks for sharing this! I wish I had an espresso maker though I think it would taste much better. :)

  3. Elena Anne says

    Wow! Thanks for sharing this. :) As for the difference between Latte and Cappuccino, Cappuccino is added with cinnamon, right?

    • Danijela says

      Hello, Elena,
      I am glad you like it. They do usually put cinnamon on top of cappuccino foam in coffee shops, but to make it look more interesting. :) Traditional cappuccino recipe does not include cinnamon but it has to have that nice milky foam on top. Latte have no foam, and it is less strong since it is prepared with more milk. If you like strong coffee you should go for cappuccino. :)

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