Saturday, December 2, 2023

Latte vs. Macchiato: Which One to Order?

by Mads

Latte vs. Macchiato: Which One to Order?

If you’re a coffee lover, you’ve probably heard of lattes and macchiatos. While both are popular espresso drinks, there are some significant differences between the two that determine which one you may prefer. In this article, we’ll explore the distinction between a latte and a macchiato, the ingredients used to make them, and how they’re served.

What’s the difference between a latte and a macchiato?

The primary difference between a latte and a macchiato is the ratio of espresso to milk. Lattes are made with a shot or two of espresso and steamed milk, while macchiatos are made with a shot of espresso, a dollop of foam, and a small amount of steamed milk. This distinction primarily determines how strong the coffee flavor is in each drink.


Lattes are generally made by pulling one or two shots of espresso into a cup and then adding steamed milk. The amount of coffee in a latte is usually about 30 ml, while the milk is about twice that amount, making the coffee flavor relatively mild. Lattes can be made with regular milk or milk substitutes like almond or soy milk.


Lattes can also be customized with different flavors like vanilla, caramel, or hazelnut, and latte art, creating beautiful designs in the foam, has become increasingly popular. Being the most popular coffee drink in the world, the latte is both versatile and accessible to coffee lovers all over the globe.


Macchiatos are made with a single shot of espresso and a small amount of steamed milk topped with foam. The word ‘macchiato’ means ‘marked’ in Italian, which refers to the dollop of foam marking the espresso, making it visibly different from a regular shot of espresso.

Macchiatos are shorter than lattes, containing about 15-30ml of espresso. The small amount of milk used to make a macchiato means that the coffee flavor is much stronger than a latte. This makes it an excellent choice for those seeking a caffeine boost or for those who prefer a more robust coffee flavor without the added sweetness that comes with a latte.


What’s the difference between a latte and a macchiato in terms of taste?

In terms of taste, lattes are typically milder and creamier, while macchiatos are stronger and bolder. Lattes have a more delicate coffee flavor, and the addition of steamed milk sweetens it, making it feel smooth in texture. On the other hand, macchiatos have a thicker, stronger flavor because they contain less milk and more espresso. However, since the milk complements the espresso, it produces a velvety textured coffee.

Which one should you choose?

The decision between a latte and a macchiato ultimately comes down to your personal preferences. If you enjoy a milder coffee flavor and a creamier texture, a latte is most likely up your alley. However, suppose you are looking for a bolder coffee flavor with a thicker texture. In that case, you should try a macchiato instead.

Remember that both lattes and macchiatos can be made using variations of milk substitutes and flavors. While traditional lattes and macchiatos may be better known, more creative varieties are becoming increasingly common.



In summary, lattes and macchiatos are two popular espresso drinks with varying strengths and milks. The difference between the two comes down to the amount of espresso and milk used, resulting in a more robust taste in macchiatos versus lattes’ creamier texture. Ultimately, the choice between a latte and a macchiato comes down to your preferences, and both drinks can be customized in various ways. So experiment with different flavors and varieties until you find the perfect pick-me-up that suits your taste buds!

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