null Take me straight to the main attraction
9 barista-style drinks to make at home

9 barista-style drinks to make at home

Your guide to making epic barista coffee drinks at home 

What exactly is the difference between a flat white and a latte? How do you make them at home?

In this brew guide we share the recipes for your favourite speciality coffee drinks and tips for how to make these from the comfort of your own kitchen.

We’ll take you through the recipes and brew ratios for a range of barista-made coffee drinks starting with the smallest, an espresso, and ending with the largest, a latte. 

You can use any espresso from Extract Coffee Roasters to make these drinks, but we’ll also give you a couple of specific coffee recommendations for each one.

By the end of this guide you’ll know your cappuccinos from your cortados, and your macchiatos from your mochas. 

Home Barista Jargon Buster & Notes

We're going to try to keep this as plain-speaking and jargon-free as we can, but if you're going make barista style drinks at home, you need to know some of the barista lingo and fundamentals that we'll be using in this guide. 

Let’s start off with a few jargon-busters to break the ice. 

Espresso - The drinks in this guide are all espresso based, and are made using a double shot of espresso unless we say otherwise. This is standard in all speciality cafes. At home, you might choose to use a single shot. Feel free to adjust the recipes accordingly if you like. Experimentation is encouraged. 

Dairy Milk - The milk based drinks can be made with dairy or plant based milks. If you’re using dairy, we recommend using full fat or semi-skimmed milk. At Extract Coffee Roasters we favour unhomogenised milk which gives a creamier finish. In the roastery, we use Bruton Dairy which has about 4% fat content. 

Alt Milks - If you’re using an alt-milk we find oat milks are the most stable for latte art. You’ll get the best results with a barista version. These milks are less likely to split during steaming. Minor Figures Barista Oat and Organic Oat are our alt-milks of choice. 

Textured milk - Baristas “texture” or “stretch” the milk using the steam wand. This is milk which has been heated to 145-150 degrees. First by adding air into the milk, then by heating the milk. Stretching gives the milk body and a silky, velvety texture, making it possible to pour latte art. 

Microfoam - Microfoam is an essential component for pouring latte art. This is finely textured milk with tiny air bubbles. When you’re pouring your milk, this will be the last milk to come out of the jug, as you lower your jug down to the surface of the coffee. 

Frothed milk - Frothed milk has larger air bubbles and a foamier texture. You make this by adding more air to cold milk when steaming. Frothed milk is only really used in cappuccinos, for all other drinks, you’re aiming for textured milk with microfoam.

Equipment you need to make barista drinks at home

Espresso machine with steam wand - All barista-style drinks like lattes and flat whites are espresso based, so to make them at home you need to have an espresso machine. Most of these drinks require steamed or textured milk and the only way to really achieve this is using the team wand on your machine. 

Milk jug - You want a good milk jug for steaming and pouring latte art. This can make a big difference to your final pour. 

Milk Thermometer - A milk thermometer will really help you learn what temperature and how long to steam your milk for. 

Cups - Cafes have different cups for different drinks. These are designed in specific sizes to help the baristas make drinks more consistently, using the same amounts of coffee and milk each time. 

That said, even between cafes there is variation. The coffee cups we recommend and use at Extract Coffee Roasters are made by  Loveramics and come in 300/200/150/80ml sizes, but some cafes serve drinks in 4/5/6/7/8oz cups. 

A matching set of cafe-style cups might not be practical at home, but a range of different coffee cups in different sizes is useful. Below is a summary of the cup sizes that you’re likely to need. 

  • Espresso cups - 80ml - For espressos and macchiatos 
  • Small coffee cups - 150ml - For flat whites, piccolos, cortados 
  • Medium cups - 200ml - For americanos, mochas, cappuccinos 
  • Large cups - 300ml - For lattes 

A microfibre cloth - The golden rule of all baristas… Wipe. That. Wand. Keep your steam wand clean and hygienic. We recommend having a dedicated microfibre cloth which you use only for this purpose. Use a separate cloth for wiping down work surfaces and coffee spills.

Coffee - Of course! You'll need some delicious Extract Coffee Roasters Coffee. For these recipes you will need espresso ground coffee. You can buy pre-ground espresso online - just choose the portafilter espresso icon when buying your coffee, or, buy whole beans and grind your coffee at home. 

Different drinks will lend themselves to different coffees, so as we go through the guide we'll share our coffee recommendations for each drink.

Your coffee drinks guide

OK, so now we're ready to dive into all of the different espresso-based drinks that you can make at home using a domestic espresso machine.

For each drink we're going to explain what goes into it, in what proportions and how it should be served. To make it simpler we'll give you a diagram to show the proportions of each component. 

Let's dive in...


What is an espresso? 

An espresso is a double shot of strong coffee, made using an espresso machine. 

It’s served straight up with no milk at all in a short espresso cup (about 80ml). All of the drinks in this brew guide are espresso-based. So they start with a double shot of espresso and have milk or water added to them. 

  • Served in an 80ml espresso cup 
  • 1 double shot of espresso 

Recommended coffees for espresso.

Try a lighter roast like our  Roaster’s Choice Espresso or one of our single origin espressos. These are likely to have more delicate flavours, and interesting fruit notes which can really speak for themselves in a simple espresso.

For more espresso tips - check out our  Espresso brew guide.


What is a Macchiato?

A Macchiato is a short drink, topped with a ‘dot’ of textured or foamed milk on the top. It’s typically served in an espresso cup which is about 80ml.

  • 80ml espresso cup
  • 1 double shot of espresso
  • Topped with a thin layer of microfoam

Recommended coffees for a Macchiato.

Lighter roasts, like  Dr Strangelove Espresso or one of our Roast'er Choice espressos, have a touch more acidity which can really shine through in a shorter drink like a macchiato.


What is a Cortado?

A Cortado is a shorter drink with equal parts coffee to textured milk, topped with microfoam. It’s typically served in a 100ml cup (3-4oz).

If you don’t have a 100ml cup, you can make these in a flat white cup (150ml) but don’t pour your milk all the way to the top.

  • 100ml (3-4oz cup)
  • 1 double shot of espresso
  • Equal quantity of textured milk:espressoTopped with a thin layer of microfoam

Recommended coffees for a Cortado.

Extract Original Espresso makes a super tasty cortado. It’s super smooth with notes of caramel, hazelnut and cocoa. Alternatively, try a natural process coffee, like Funka, our Summer Espresso for a fruitier coffee.


What is a Piccolo?

The difference between a Piccolo and a Cortado is that a Piccolo is made with a single instead of a double shot of espresso. The result is a short drink, but not quite as punchy as its cortado sister.

If you don’t have a 100ml cup, you can make these in a flat white cup (150ml) but don’t pour your milk all the way to the top.

  • 100ml cup (3-4oz)
  • 1 single-shot espresso
  • Double quantity of textured milk: espresso (same amount of milk as a cortado)
  • Topped with microfoam

Recommended coffees for a Piccolo.

Just like with a cortado,  Extract Original is a safe bet here. If you’re especially sensitive to caffeine, you could even make this using our Half Speed Espresso - for a single-short, low caffeine alternative. 

Flat White

What is a Flat White? 

Originating from New Zealand, a flat white is a milky, espresso based coffee. Even though they have the same amount of coffee, a flat white is a shorter drink than a latte, with significantly less milk, typically served in smaller servings of 150ml (about 5oz) 

A higher coffee:milk ratio means the coffee flavours can cut through the milk in a Flat White, whilst still giving a smooth drink. This makes it ideal for lighter roast espressos which might otherwise struggle to really stand out in a longer, milkier drink like a latte. 

  • 150ml / 5-6oz cup 
  • 1 double shot of espresso 
  • Topped with silky textured milk and a thin layer of microfoam 

Recommended coffees for a Flat White. 

Flat whites (flatties!) are so popular because they're brilliantly balanced. Try one of Extract's tasty  single origin espressos for something really special. 


What is a cappuccino?

OK, so we're stepping up in terms of drinks size now. A cappuccino is a foamy, milky, espresso-based drink.

It should be about 200ml (around 7oz). You want something longer than a flat white, shorter than a latte.

The ratios for a cappuccino should be approximately ⅓ espresso, ⅓ textured milk and ⅓ foamed milk. This will take a bit of practice on your home machine. You’ll need to add more air than for a flat white or latte.

This means steaming your milk for a second or two longer, resulting in more air bubbles and a foamier finish than for a flat white. Some cafes finish a cappuccino with a dusting of chocolate - this is totally your call.

  • 200ml cup (about 7oz)
  • 1 double shot of espresso
  • Top with1/3 silky textured milk and 1/3 foamed milk.

Recommended coffees for Cappuccinos.

We’re getting into the realms of larger drinks now, so choosing a coffee with a more developed roast profile is important. For cappuccinos we turn to  Extract Rocket Espresso or Extract Organic Espresso.  

Americano or Long Black

What is an Americano? 

An americano is an espresso topped with a double quantity of hot water. It can be served black or with a dash of warm or cold milk. The milk in an americano is not textured. 

Typically an americano would be served in a 200ml cup (about 7oz). 

What is a Long Black? 

A long black is essentially the same as an americano, but prepared in a different order. 

An americano should be prepared espresso first, then hot water, then milk. A long black is water first, then espresso, then milk. 

Adding the espresso second gives a better combined and more consistent drink, so in most speciality cafes americanos are prepared as long blacks. (this is how we train our baristas to make an americano).  

What is a Short Black? 

A short black is as above, but with an equal ratio of water to espresso, resulting in a stronger tasting drink. 

  • 200ml cup 
  • Hot water 
  • Double shot of espresso 
  • Warm or cold milk (optional) 

Recommended coffees for an Americano. 

We enjoy fruity coffees as an americano - especially if you’re drinking it black. Something like  Inner Strength EspressoFunka Espresso or Betty Espresso when they are available, or a single origin espresso with delicious sweet tasting notes.


What is a mocha?

A mocha is a milky, espresso based drink with added chocolate. A real treat! 

It should be the same size as a cappuccino, longer than a flat white, shorter than a latte. At Extract we serve mochas in a 200ml serving, that’s about 7oz.

  • 200ml cup (about 7oz)
  • 1 double shot of espresso
  • Mix 1 teaspoon hot chocolate powder into your espresso and stir to dissolve
  • Top with silky textured milk and a thin layer of microfoam

Recommended coffees for a Mocha.

We like to choose coffees which have big chocolatey flavours in the tasting notes when making a mocha. Something like  Extract Organic Espresso is great, or if you’re making a white chocolate mocha you could try Betty, our Spring Espresso

An  Extract Decaf mocha is the ultimate indulgence when it comes to cosy evenings in.


What is a Latte?

A latte is a long, milky espresso based drink. This is the largest drink in this drinks guide. In speciality-coffee terms anything over 8oz is classed as a latte. 

Typically you would see these served in 300ml cups (about 10.5oz).

A latte has a double shot of espresso and is then topped with textured milk and a layer of microfoam.

It has the same amount of coffee and the milk texture is the same as shorter drinks like a flat white, but because it has a lower coffee:milk ratio it doesn’t taste as punchy as shorter drinks.

Lattes are particularly well suited to a darker roast espresso which is able to cut through the sweetness and creaminess of the milk.

  • 300ml cup
  • 1 double shot of espresso
  • Topped with silky textured milk and a thin layer of microfoam

Recommended coffees for Lattes.

A latte needs a darker roast coffee to cut through all that milkiness. 

For this, we turn to  Cast Iron Espresso, our darkest roast. Designed to be paired with milk or alt-milk it makes a truly delicious latte.

All that reading left you thirsty?

Thank you for making it to the end of this guide. We hope that you've found what you're looking for and have learned more about making delicious coffee at home. If you'd like to browse our latest coffees - head over to our shop using the button below. 

If you’d like more info on brewing better coffee at home, check out our  free home barista brew guides including: 

Until next time coffee lovers.