A latte is a popular hot coffee beverage, traditionally made by combining espresso with steamed milk and a small layer of foam. This creamy and comforting drink is a favorite among coffee lovers, and making it at home is easier than you might think. With a few basic ingredients and simple techniques, you can enjoy a delicious latte anytime you like, without needing an espresso machine or having to leave the comfort of your own kitchen.

What You’ll Need to Make a Latte



  • Saucepan
  • Mixer
  • French Press or Automatic Drip Brewer


There's nothing quite like a hot, creamy latte to start your day off on the right foot. While it's easy to head to your favorite coffee shop to get your fix, making a latte at home using coffee is surprisingly simple, quick, doesn’t require specific gadgets, and can save you money in the long run.  These easy step-by-step instructions will help you make a delicious latte right in your own kitchen: 

Step 1
First, steam the milk. To steam the milk for a Latte, heat 1 cup of milk in a 2-quart saucepan over medium heat. Let the milk simmer until bubbles form around the edges, but don’t allow the milk to come to a boil. Remove the pan from heat and set it on a flat surface.

Step 2
Whip the milk with an electric mixer, increasing the speed as the milk begins to thicken. Continue mixing until you get the desired volume of froth. The froth will be ready for your Latte when the texture is smooth and velvety, with small bubbles evenly distributed throughout the milk.

Step 3
Brew the coffee. If you are using a coffeemaker, use 2 tablespoons of Folgers Black Silk per 5 to 6 ounces of water. If you are using a 4-cup capacity French press, use 8 tablespoons of coffee. See more tips on how to make coffee in a French press.

Step 4
Once the coffee is finished brewing, it’s time to make your drink. For a traditional latte, combine 3 ounces of espresso coffee with 7 ounces of steamed milk. Stir and enjoy!

What Milks Can You Use in a Latte: Dairy and Non-Dairy

Whole milk is typically used in lattes because of its high-fat content, which gives the drink a rich and creamy texture. When steamed, the fat in whole milk helps create a stable and velvety foam that holds its shape and provides a smooth texture. Additionally, whole milk has a slightly sweet taste that complements the natural bitterness of coffee, making it a popular choice for latte lovers.  

However, if you're looking for an alternative to whole milk for your latte, there are several dairy and non-dairy alternatives:

Dairy Latte Milk Options

Whole milk is the traditional choice for lattes. It has a creamy texture and a slightly sweet flavor that pairs well with coffee.

Skim milk has a lower fat content than whole milk, which can make it easier to create latte art. However, it may not have the same creamy texture as whole milk.

2% milk is a good compromise between whole milk and skim milk. It has a creamier texture than skim milk but is lower in fat than whole milk. 

Non-Dairy Latte Milk Options

Soy milk is a popular non-dairy alternative to whole milk. It has a similar texture and flavor to dairy milk, making it a good option for lattes. 

Almond milk is another non-dairy option that can be used in lattes. It has a slightly nutty flavor and a thinner consistency than dairy milk, so it may not work as well for latte art. 

Oat milk has a creamy texture and a slightly sweet flavor, making it a good option for lattes. It also foams well, which can make it easier to create latte art. 

Coconut milk has a rich, creamy texture and a slightly sweet flavor. It can be a good option for lattes, but it may not work as well for latte art due to its thicker consistency.

Pros and Cons of Using Non-Dairy Milk in a Latte

When considering using non-dairy milk for a latte, it's important to weigh the pros and cons to determine whether it's the right choice for you.


Dietary restrictions: Non-dairy milk is a good option for those who are lactose intolerant or have a dairy allergy.

Vegan lifestyle: No animal products are used to make plant-based milk, making them a good option for vegan individuals.

Variety of flavors: Non-dairy milk comes in a variety of flavors, such as almond, soy, and oat milk, which can add a unique taste to a latte.

Sustainability: Some non-dairy milk options, such as almond and oat milk, have a lower environmental impact than traditional dairy milk.


Texture: Non-dairy milk may not have the same creamy texture as dairy milk, which can affect the taste and mouthfeel of a latte.

Foaming ability: Some non-dairy milk options may not foam as well as dairy milk, which can make it difficult to create latte art.

Flavor: The flavor of non-dairy milk may not pair as well with espresso as dairy milk does, which can affect the taste of the latte.

Cost: Non-dairy milk options can be more expensive than dairy milk, which can make it a less accessible option for some people.

Tips for Making a Perfect Latte

  • Use freshly roasted coffee for the best flavor 
  • For a creamier texture, use whole milk 
  • Heat the milk to around 140°F to achieve the ideal frothiness. Use a thermometer to measure the temperature of the milk 
  • Experiment with different milk types and sweeteners to find your perfect latte 
  • Enhance your latte with your favorite flavors. Explore all of our recipes for delicious add-ins. 

How to Make Latte Art

Latte art is a unique form of creative expression that has become an essential part of the coffee culture. It involves using steamed milk to create designs on the surface of a latte, ranging from simple patterns to intricate works of art. While latte art requires some skill and practice to master, it can add an extra layer of enjoyment to your coffee-drinking experience, as well as impress your friends and family. 

Before you begin pouring the milk, make sure the surface of the coffee is smooth and free of any bubbles or crema. 

Master the basic designs 
Practice creating simple designs like hearts, tulips, and rosettas before moving on to more complex patterns.

Control the flow 
The key to good latte art is controlling the flow of the milk as you pour it. Start with a slow and steady pour, and then increase or decrease the speed to create different shapes and designs.

Create contrast 
Use the contrast between the dark espresso and the white milk foam to your advantage by incorporating negative space into your designs.

Experiment with color 
Add food coloring or natural ingredients, like matcha powder or cocoa, to create different colors. 

Be patient 
Latte art takes practice and patience; get discouraged if your first attempts don't turn out perfectly. Keep practicing and experimenting, and you'll soon be creating beautiful art on your lattes.

Heart latte art

To make heart latte art, begin by pouring a small amount of milk into the center of the coffee. Then, raise the pitcher a few inches and pour a steady stream of milk into the center of the cup. As the milk begins to sink, use a back-and-forth motion to create a heart shape. Refine the edges by using a toothpick.

Tulip latte art

To make tulip latte art, begin by pouring a small amount of milk into the center of the coffee. Then, raise the pitcher a few inches and pour a steady stream of milk into the center of the cup. As the milk sinks, use a back-and-forth motion to create a series of loops, with each loop slightly larger than the previous one. Create the stem of the tulip with a toothpick by connecting the loops with a straight line.

Rosetta latte art

To make rosetta latte art, start by pouring a thin stream of milk into the center of the coffee. As the milk sinks, begin to wiggle the pitcher back and forth to create a leaf pattern. Then, quickly flick your wrist to connect the leaves with a straight line, creating a rosetta shape. Refine the leaf details by using a toothpick.

Frequently Asked Latte Questions

Can I make a latte without espresso? 
Yes, you can make a latte without espresso by using a strong-brewed coffee or a concentrated coffee like a French press or cold brew. However, it's important to note that the taste and texture of the latte will be different without the unique flavor and crema of espresso. You can also experiment with using different types of tea, such as matcha or chai, to create a latte-like beverage with a different flavor profile. 

What temperature should I heat the milk to for a latte? 
The ideal temperature for steamed milk is between 140-160°F (60-70°C). You want it hot enough to blend well with the espresso, but not so hot that it scalds or burns the milk. 

Do I have to use whole milk for my latte? 
No, you can use any milk of your choice. Whole milk is traditionally used due to its creamier texture. 

How can I sweeten my latte without using sugar? 
You can use honey, maple syrup, or any other sweetener of your choice. 

Can I use instant coffee instead of ground coffee for my latte? 
While it's possible to use instant coffee, the flavor won't be as rich as using freshly brewed coffee. 

Can I add flavors to my latte? 
Yes, you can add flavors to your latte by adding syrups or flavorings like vanilla, caramel, or hazelnut. Simply add them to the milk before steaming and frothing. Explore all of our recipes for instructions and additional flavors.