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How to Make a Vanilla Latte at Home

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We all have a bit of a sweet tooth. Why not mix that sweet tooth with your love of coffee? We happen to love vanilla lattes, especially making them at home, and we love helping others do the same!

Making a vanilla latte is simple. All you need are a few common kitchen items and the desire for sweet, sweet coffee.

First, we need to make sure that we are calm and collected. In the fervor of wanting to make and taste something delicious, we can sometimes rush a bit. So, take a deep breath and prepare yourself for an enjoyable experience. Good things take time.

Things We’ll Need

vanilla things needed

For this project, we will need:

  • Something to heat up our water
  • Something to make our espresso or strong coffee
  • A small saucepan
  • 20-22 grams of coffee beans of your choice (for espresso, we recommend a dark roast, or even something labeled an espresso roast; we highly recommend steering clear of flavored coffees for this drink)
  • Milk (we recommend 10 ounces, but this is totally your preference)
  • Vanilla syrup
  • A whisk

Now that we have everything we need, it’s time to put the whole thing together. We are going to walk you through the process, step by step, with instructions on how to change the recipe or process as needed. We understand that you might have an entirely different kitchen setup.

Steps for Making a Vanilla Latte

1. Grind the coffee

The first thing we must do is grind our coffee. Since we are going to use a shot of espresso, we need to grind it as fine as possible because we prefer our shot extra strong. Because of the finer grind, the water will really have to work to get the coffee through and in the process, extract more of the bean.

We understand that you might not have a method for making espresso, so simply grind your coffee a little finer than you normally would for whatever brewing method you are using. We also recommend using more coffee than normal.

2. Prepare the water

Heat up the water for the Moka pot. We do this beforehand because we do not want to burn the grounds by heating them too much while waiting for the water to get hot.

If you are not using a Moka pot, just prepare your coffee how you would normally.

3. Start heating the milk on the stovetop

To “steam” our milk, we will start by putting it in a small saucepan and heating it on low to medium heat so as not to burn the milk. This will also allow us to prepare our coffee and have the two be ready at the same time, making for the freshest drink possible.

Alternatively, put half the amount of milk you wish to “froth” in a microwavable jar with a lid, and shake it up. It should double in volume. Once you’ve done this, microwave your milk for 30-45 seconds, and you’ll have fresh frothed milk!

vanilla milk

4. Hot water and espresso go in the Moka pot

Time for our shot to be ready! The coffee will go in the Moka pot, along with the water, and we will wait for the syrupy goodness to start oozing up. While this is happening, we can do the next two steps.

vanilla espresso

5. Prepare our vanilla syrup

Pour the desired amount of vanilla syrup into the receptacle that will also hold your shot of espresso. We recommend using between ½ ounce to 1 ounce, depending on how sweet you want your drink to be.

vanilla syrup

6. Whisk the milk

Once your milk has reached a safe and appropriate drinking temperature (for a latte, we recommend between 150-160 degrees Fahrenheit, as milk burns at 180 degrees), we will whisk the milk to introduce air into it, as little or as much as you like. You can either do this with a traditional whisking motion or by placing it between your hands and rolling it back and forth.

vanilla frothed milk

7. Pour your shot over the vanilla

Feel free to marvel at how beautiful the espresso looks as it mixes with the syrups!

vanilla frothed milk

8. Now pour the shot mixed with syrup into a mug …

Pour the milk over the shot and then …

vanilla shots

Voilà!

You now have yourself a lovely and delicious vanilla latte right in the comfort of your own home. You also have the fundamental knowledge of how to make this coffee drink any time you want. Think of how many other wonderful drinks you could make! Speaking of which …

Let’s say that it’s really hot out …

You want a latte, but it’s over 100 degrees outside, so you don’t feel like drinking something that is also hot. You’re in luck, because vanilla lattes are equally good iced, and it’s even easier to make. Here’s how to do it:

iced vanilla ice

The first step is the easiest, as all we need to do is fill a glass of your choosing with ice.

iced vanilla shots

Then we will repeat Step 7 from above: After we have mixed the vanilla syrup with the espresso, we will pour the espresso mixture over the ice.

iced vanilla finished

Then, simply pour the preferred amount of milk over the espresso mix, and you have yourself a lovely summer coffee drink!