As two of the most popular coffee drinks in the world, the latte and the frappe are loved by a lot of people. But what exactly are they? And how are they different? Let’s take a deep dive into the world of Latte vs. Frappe!

A photo of a latte and a frappe next to each other with the words "10 key differences; frappe vs. latte" at the top.

☕ What is a latte?

A latte is an espresso drink made with 1 or 2 espresso shots plus steamed milk or frothed milk. There is a thin layer of milk foam that gathers at the top which is perfect for making latte art. A latte is usually a hot drink as the espresso is made with hot water and the milk is steamed.

Can a latte be cold?

Yes, you can buy or make an iced latte which is 1 or 2 shots of espresso (or cold brew) poured over ice and topped up with cold milk.

Where did the latte originate?

The latte, or “caffellatte” comes from Italy. It began as a breakfast drink in 17th-century Europe. Although it is foamed today, the original consisted of coffee brewed in a moka pot and then poured into a cup of hot milk.

Nutritional information for a latte

A latte with just whole milk and one shot of espresso has around 63mg of caffeine. If you’re using around 250ml of whole milk, it will have 155 calories, 13g carbs, 8.5g fat, and 8.3 grams of protein. Any extra sugar will add to the number of carbs and calories.

A latte next to a frappe on a table with a spoon.

🧊 What is a frappe?

A traditional frappe is a cold Greek drink made with a combination of instant coffee, sugar or sweetener (optional), and cold water. This cold beverage is blended with a milk frother and becomes thick and foamy before separating. You can add a splash of milk to this coffee beverage if desired. It’s perfect for hot summer days!

Can a frappe be hot?

There isn’t really such a thing as a hot frappe. The word frappe is a French word meaning “chilled”, and therefore you can’t really have a hot frappe because it would no longer be chilled. It would just be foamy hot coffee.

Where did the frappe originate?

The frappe was invented in Greece by a representative of the Nestle company. Yannis Dritsas was showcasing a new chocolate drink that was shaken in a jar. His employee decided to try shaking the drink with coffee instead of chocolate, and the frappe was born.

Nutritional information for a frappe

A frappe has around 30-35mg of caffeine per drink. If you add a teaspoon of sugar, the calories will come to around 20 calories per cup, and 4.2 grams of carbs. If you use sweetener or no sugar it will have no carbs and around 5 calories per serving.

A latte next to a frappe on a table with a white cloth and spoon.

🗝️ Frappe vs latte: what are the 10 key differences?

The biggest differences between a latte and a frappe are:

1. How it is made:

I’d say this is probably the main difference between a latte and a frappe. A latte is made by pouring steamed milk over espresso coffee. A frappe is made by whisking or shaking instant coffee and sugar with cold water.

2. Where it is from:

A latte is usually claimed as an Italian invention, whereas the frappe was first made in Greece.

3. Texture:

A latte is a smooth coffee drink that kind of has a thick mouthfeel thanks to the frothed milk. A frappe is an iced coffee with a thick layer of coffee foam on the top.

4. Structure:

A latte is as follows: Espresso on the bottom, followed by milk, and a thin layer of foam on the top. A frappe consists of about 50-60% instant coffee, sugar, and water, and 40-50% foam.

An inforgraphic showing the visual difference between a frappe and a latte.

5. Type of coffee:

A latte uses hot espresso whereas a frappe needs instant coffee in order to work. The oil in the coffee beans is a little too heavy for the cafe frappe to work properly because it weighs the bubbles down making them disappear quickly. You could use instant coffee to make a latte but espresso from an espresso machine is best (although when I’m at home I make French Press Espresso instead. It works really well!).

6. Temperature:

A caffe latte can either be hot or cold, whereas a café frappe is always an iced drink.

7. Caffeine content:

There are 35 mg of caffeine in a teaspoon of instant coffee (frappe) and around 63mg of caffeine in 1 shot of espresso (latte).

8. Calories:

As a frappe is usually just a teaspoon of coffee and a teaspoon of sugar with water, it’s usually around 20 calories or less for the whole drink. A latte on the other hand uses espresso and a lot more creamy whole milk which will total around 160 calories all in all.

9. Flavors:

Generally, a frappe is just coffee flavored (although I do like to add a teaspoon of cocoa powder to make a chocolate frappe sometimes!). A latte on the other hand comes in any flavor you can dream of. Popular flavors include vanilla latte, mocha (made with chocolate sauce), caramel latte, pumpkin spice latte, cinnamon latte, peppermint mocha, and even fruit flavors like a strawberry latte.

10. Art:

Finally, a latte is a perfect drink to practice latte art on! I loved this part of being a barista. Sometimes I made the most beautiful hearts on lattes for my customers. A frappe can’t really have art, but it is beautiful just as it is.

🥣 How to make a latte

Hot latte

1. Begin by making 1 or 2 shots of espresso in an espresso machine or making French Press Espresso.

2. Pour the espresso into a latte glass or a mug.

Pouring a shot of espresso into a tall latte glass.

3. Next, steam the milk with a milk steamer. Alternatively, you can heat the milk in the microwave for 1-2 minutes (check after 1 minute to see if it’s hot enough), and then froth it with an electric handheld milk frother.

Pouring milk over a shot of espresso in a tall latte glass.

4. Pour the milk over the espresso. Add sugar if desired.

Iced latte

1. Begin by making 1 or 2 shots of espresso in an espresso machine or making French Press Espresso.

2. Pour the espresso into a tall glass or a latte glass.

3. Add sugar if desired and mix it with the espresso.

4. Add ice cubes and then top it with cold milk.

5. Mix well with a straw or spoon.

🥤 How to make a frappe

1. Begin by adding instant coffee and sugar (if desired) to a tall glass or tall cup.

2. Add cold water to the cup until it is about half full.

3. Use a milk frother and froth the water and coffee until it nearly reaches the top of the cup.

4. Add ice cubes and a splash of milk if desired.

🤔 Is a frappe the same thing as a frappuccino?

Although a frappuccino is often called a frappe, they aren’t the same thing. A frappuccino is an iced coffee drink with a thick consistency that usually involves a shot of espresso blended with ice cubes, syrup (e.g. vanilla or chocolate syrup), and whole milk, and then topped with whipped cream. It’s more like an ice cream than a drink! The coffee frappuccino comes in many different flavors like a caramel frappuccino or a chocolate frappuccino.

A Frappe and a latte on a white table with a white cloth and spoons.

 😋 More drink recipes and posts you will love

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