white americano vs latte

Are you a coffee lover looking to up your espresso game? Then you won't want to miss this in-depth battle between two popular espresso drinks: the white Americano and the latte. We'll explore the history, taste, and preparation of each drink, and ultimately crown a winner in this epic espresso showdown. So grab your favorite mug and let's dive in!

White Americano Vs Latte

A white Americano and a latte are both popular coffee beverages that have espresso as their base, but they differ in ingredients and taste. Understanding these differences can help you choose your preferred drink according to your taste preferences.

A white Americano consists of espresso and hot water, with a small amount of milk or cream added for a lighter color and smoother taste. It has a bold and concentrated flavor due to the espresso being the main component, while the hot water dilutes the intensity. The addition of milk or cream in a white Americano softens the strong taste, but it retains the characteristics of an Americano with its rich, deep coffee notes.

On the other hand, a latte is a combination of espresso and steamed milk, typically in a ratio of 1/4 espresso to 3/4 milk. The milk not only dilutes the strong taste of the espresso but also adds a creamy and slightly sweet flavor to the drink, thanks to the natural sugars in the milk. The steamed milk also creates a velvety texture that is characteristic of a latte.

Here are some key differences between a white Americano and a latte:

  • Ingredients: A white Americano is made with espresso, hot water, and a small amount of milk or cream, while a latte is made of espresso and steamed milk.
  • Taste: White Americanos have a bold and intense flavor, moderated by a bit of milk or cream. Lattes have a milder taste, with the creaminess and sweetness of the milk balancing out the espresso's bitterness.
  • Texture: Lattes have a rich, creamy texture due to the steamed milk, while white Americanos have a thinner texture because of the higher water content.
  • Caffeine Content: Americanos generally have less caffeine than lattes because they contain less espresso. However, this difference may vary depending on the brewing method and specific espresso used.

In summary, a white Americano offers a stronger, more concentrated coffee taste with a hint of milk or cream, while a latte provides a creamy and smooth experience with a balance of espresso and milk flavors. The choice between the two depends on your personal preference for boldness, creaminess, and overall taste experience.

Origins And History


The history of White Americano and Latte can be traced back to Italy, the birthplace of espresso. While different in presentation, both beverages have roots in Italian coffee culture, which has greatly influenced the coffee-drinking world.

In Italy, the Latte, known as Caffè latte, consists of espresso mixed with frothy milk. Around the 19th century, the coffee culture in Europe gave rise to drinks like Lattes, recognized for their rich appearance and smooth taste. A typical Latte is made with one to two shots of espresso, about 300ml of steamed milk, and a small amount of milk foam on top.

Americano Misto

The White Americano, sometimes known as Americano Misto, shares a similar history to Lattes in that it also utilizes espresso as its base. Unlike the Latte, which is milk-based, the White Americano combines espresso with double the amount of hot water to create a less concentrated and more accessible coffee.


While it's evident that both beverages originate from the espresso tradition in Europe, the key difference between a White Americano and a Latte is the milk content. Lattes are made with steamed milk, which gives them a rich, creamy texture. White Americanos, on the other hand, only contain espresso and hot water, making them less creamy and more familiar to traditional coffee drinkers.

Additionally, White Americanos typically have less caffeine than Lattes. This is because the increased amount of hot water dilutes the potency of the espresso, whereas a Latte's milk content does not affect the caffeine level.

In summary, the White Americano and Latte share a common origin in the Italian espresso tradition but differ significantly in their preparation, taste, and caffeine content. Remember to avoid making exaggerated or false claims and instead focus on providing accurate, relevant information, presented in a clear, compelling, and neutral manner, as outlined above.

Basic Components


In both white Americano and latte beverages, the primary ingredient is espresso. Espresso, a highly concentrated form of coffee, is created by forcing hot water through finely ground coffee beans. The resulting rich, intense flavor acts as the base for both drinks. The amount of espresso in these beverages may vary, but typically one or two shots of espresso are used.

Steamed Milk

Steamed milk plays a crucial role in the preparation of a latte. To create a latte, it generally consists of 1/4 espresso and 3/4 steamed milk. Steamed milk is heated and frothed to create a creamy texture that complements the bold espresso. In a latte, the proportion of milk to coffee is larger, which results in a smoother, creamier taste.


A significant difference between a white Americano and a latte is the presence of foam. A latte includes a small layer of frothed milk foam on top, which contributes to its creamy texture and adds a velvety mouthfeel. Foam is created by gently frothing the milk while steaming it, and it adds an extra layer of richness to the latte.

Hot Water

The key component that sets a white Americano apart from a latte is hot water. An Americano consists of espresso and approximately double the amount of hot water. The addition of hot water dilutes the espresso, creating a more intense taste but with a lighter and less creamy texture than a latte. The water-to-espresso ratio can be adjusted to suit individual preferences, making it a versatile beverage.

Differences in taste and caffeine content between these two beverages can be attributed to the basic components used to make them. A white Americano has a bold, intense flavor, whereas a latte is smoother, creamier, and less harsh due to the steamed milk and foam. In terms of caffeine, Americanos typically contain more, with 154 mg of caffeine per cup compared to a latte's average of 120 mg per cup.

Flavor Profiles And Taste

Creamy Texture

Lattes are known for their creamy texture, which comes from the use of steamed milk in the beverage. The milk not only provides a rich, velvety mouthfeel but also contributes to the slightly sweet taste of a latte. This natural sweetness created by the milk's sugars balances out the bitter notes of the espresso, creating a harmonious and pleasant flavor profile.

Robust Flavor

In contrast to lattes, White Americanos have a more robust flavor due to their primary components – espresso and hot water. This combination results in a bold, intense taste that can often be more bitter than a latte. The additions of water to the espresso allow the flavors to spread out, revealing a more complex coffee experience without the creamy texture of a latte.


White Americanos are considered full-bodied due to their strength and depth of flavor. This characteristic comes from the espresso used as the base, which offers bold, dark, and acidic notes. The added hot water helps to dilute the intensity of the espresso but still maintains a strong flavor profile.

Lattes, on the other hand, are not as full-bodied as Americanos since their flavor is softened by the steamed milk. The milk adds a richness and mellows the flavors, making for a more subtle and smooth-tasting beverage.

In summary, the main differences between the White Americano and latte lie in their flavor profiles and taste. A White Americano has a bold, robust flavor with a full-bodied mouthfeel, while a latte offers a creamy texture and mellow taste due to the addition of steamed milk. If you've ever been intrigued by the equipment behind these delicious beverages, especially in a professional setting, it's crucial to invest in a high-quality espresso machine. For those looking to elevate their coffee game, considering to buy a commercial grade espresso maker might be the next step. Majesty Coffee offers an extensive collection of premium espresso machines tailored for commercial use, ensuring consistent taste and quality in every cup.

Popular Variations


A cappuccino is another popular espresso-based beverage that differs from both the white Americano and latte. It typically consists of one-third espresso, one-third steamed milk, and one-third milk foam. This composition results in a balanced flavor profile, allowing the coffee enthusiast to enjoy the rich taste of espresso combined with the smoothness of steamed milk and the lightness of foam. Cappuccinos are popular for their frothy texture and artistic design made with the milk foam on top.


The macchiato, which means "stained" or "spotted" in Italian, is an espresso-based drink that features a small amount of steamed milk or milk foam added to the espresso. This beverage maintains a stronger espresso flavor compared to a latte or white Americano due to the minimal amount of milk used. There are two types of macchiatos: the traditional espresso macchiato and the more recent latte macchiato. The former has a dollop of milk foam, while the latter contains more milk and is layered, with espresso poured over the milk.


A mocha is a delightful variation that incorporates chocolate into the espresso-based drink. It is usually made with a combination of espresso, steamed milk, and chocolate syrup, then topped with whipped cream. This mixture creates a sweet and creamy beverage, which can be a perfect choice for those with a sweet tooth or who want a dessert-like coffee experience. While still showcasing the flavor of the espresso, the chocolate adds a delightful depth and richness to the drink.

Flat White

The flat white, originating from Australia and New Zealand, is another espresso-based beverage containing microfoam-textured milk. It is similar to a latte but has a higher ratio of coffee to milk, resulting in a stronger coffee flavor. The microfoam used in a flat white is smoother and silkier than the milk foam in a cappuccino, creating a velvety texture. The flat white is an excellent choice for those who appreciate the taste of espresso combined with a luxurious and creamy milk component.

Each of these espresso-based drinks offers a unique flavor and texture, catering to the diverse preferences of coffee enthusiasts worldwide. Whether you prefer the richness of a cappuccino, the intensity of a macchiato, the indulgence of a mocha, or the smoothness of a flat white, there is a beverage that satisfies your taste buds.

Ingredients And Toppings

Whole Milk

Whole milk is a common ingredient in lattes, adding a creamy and slightly sweet flavor to the drink. The natural sugars found in milk contribute to the sweetness, while the fat content in whole milk creates a rich and smooth texture. When whole milk is used in a latte, it's usually steamed and frothed to add a light, airy layer to the beverage. In contrast, a white americano is made with hot water and espresso, leaving out the milk component, which results in a stronger, more intense flavor profile.

Low-Fat Milk

For those looking for a healthier or lighter option, low-fat milk can be used in a latte as a substitute for whole milk. This choice will result in a slightly thinner texture and a less creamy taste. However, the natural sweetness of the milk is still present. A skinny latte is made with low-fat milk and usually contains fewer calories than a regular latte. White americanos, due to the absence of milk, will maintain their bold and intense taste, regardless of the type of milk used in a latte.

Whipped Cream

Whipped cream can be added to a latte as a topping, creating a decadent and indulgent treat. This addition may appeal to those with a sweet tooth; however, it's not a common ingredient in a white americano. The use of whipped cream in a latte offers further contrast to the americano's straightforward and robust flavor.


Flavored syrups can be added to both white americanos and lattes to enhance their taste and introduce new flavors. Popular choices include caramel, vanilla, and hazelnut. While these additions might alter the drinks' original flavors, they provide customers with an opportunity to customize their beverages according to their preferences.


Cinnamon is a popular topping for both lattes and white americanos. When sprinkled on top of these drinks, it imparts a warm and comforting aroma and taste. The addition of cinnamon may slightly alter the flavor profile of these espresso-based beverages, but it remains an optional and enjoyable enhancement.


Chocolate can be included in both lattes and white americanos in various forms, such as chocolate syrup or cocoa powder. It adds a sweet and rich flavor to the drinks, contrasting with the stronger taste of the espresso. Chocolate is often used in mochas, a popular variation of the latte that incorporates chocolate syrup or cocoa powder into the steamed milk and espresso mixture.

Comparing Espresso Drinks

When comparing espresso drinks, it's essential to understand the primary components of a White Americano and a Latte. Both drinks feature a basis of espresso coffee; however, they offer distinct characteristics due to differences in ingredients and preparation methods.

A White Americano is made by combining espresso with hot water, which can be adjusted to create a bolder or milder flavor. The hot water dilutes the intensity of the espresso, resulting in a coffee that maintains richness while providing a lighter mouthfeel. Alternatively, a Latte is prepared by mixing espresso with steamed and frothed milk, showcasing a creamy consistency and a slightly sweet taste due to the natural sugars present in milk.

Espresso Drink Main Ingredients Flavor and Texture
White Americano Espresso, Hot Water Bold, less intense
Latte Espresso, Steamed Milk Creamy, slightly sweet

Aside from flavor and texture, the appearance of these espresso drinks also differs. White Americanos feature a rich, dark color with varying degrees of transparency, depending on water-to-espresso ratios. Lattes, on the other hand, display a lighter hue with a milky consistency.

Another aspect to consider is the caffeine content of each drink. Generally, both the White Americano and Latte have similar caffeine levels due to their espresso base. However, a White Americano could contain slightly more caffeine depending on espresso-to-water ratios used.

In summary, when comparing the White Americano and Latte, pay close attention to the ingredients, flavor profiles, textures, and appearances of these popular espresso-based drinks. Understanding these distinctions will help individuals make informed decisions when choosing their preferred coffee beverage.

Recipes And Brewing Techniques

Long Black

A Long Black is another coffee beverage similar to an Americano, which is made by adding hot water to a double shot of espresso. To make a Long Black, start by pouring hot water into a cup, leaving enough room to add the espresso. Next, gently pour the double shot of espresso over the hot water, preserving the crema. This technique results in a bold and robust flavor profile, appreciated by coffee enthusiasts looking for an intense experience without the addition of milk.

Vanilla Latte

A Vanilla Latte is a popular variation of the classic latte, adding a touch of sweetness to the smooth blend of espresso and steamed milk. To make a Vanilla Latte, first prepare a shot of espresso. While your espresso is brewing, steam your milk. Add 1-2 tablespoons of vanilla syrup to the bottom of your cup, followed by the shot of espresso. Gently pour the steamed milk into the cup, creating a creamy texture. Finally, you may choose to garnish the Vanilla Latte with a light dusting of vanilla bean powder or a drizzle of caramel.

Pumpkin Spice

A Pumpkin Spice Latte is a seasonal favorite, featuring the warm and comforting flavors of fall. To create this festive treat, begin by preparing a shot of espresso. In a saucepan, combine a half cup of milk, 1-2 tablespoons of pumpkin puree, and 1 tablespoon of pumpkin spice syrup. Heat the mixture over low heat, whisking to combine the ingredients and create a frothy texture. Once heated, pour the pumpkin milk mixture over the espresso shot in your cup. To finish, top the Pumpkin Spice Latte with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice.

Nutrition And Calories

When it comes to the nutritional aspects of white Americano and lattes, the primary focus will be on their calorie content. Comparing the two beverages reveals some notable differences in their nutritional profiles, particularly in terms of calories.

A white Americano is a simple drink, consisting of espresso shots diluted with hot water, which has virtually no calories. The term "white" refers to adding milk or cream to the Americano, which may slightly increase the calorie content, but only marginally. For instance:

  • Black Americano: around 10 calories
  • White Americano (with a splash of whole milk): approximately 20-25 calories

On the other hand, a latte is made with espresso and steamed milk, which significantly increases its calorie content. The caloric value of a latte largely depends on the type and amount of milk used. Below is a rough estimate of calories in a standard latte made with 300ml of different types of milk:

  • Whole milk: 200 calories
  • Skimmed milk: 130 calories
  • Soy milk: 170 calories
  • Almond milk: 80 calories

These differences in calorie content can mainly be attributed to the milk component of each drink. It is important to keep in mind that these values may vary depending on the specific serving size, type of milk, and any additional syrups or toppings that may be included.

In summary, when comparing white Americano and latte, the former is a lower-calorie choice, primarily due to its minimal milk content. On the other hand, lattes tend to have a higher calorie count, primarily due to their significant milk component.

Popular Chains For White Americano And Latte


Starbucks, a leading coffee chain, offers both White Americano and Latte options for coffee lovers. They cater to the preferences of a wide range of customers by offering variations of these beverages, ensuring that their visitors can enjoy a satisfying experience.

A White Americano at Starbucks consists of espresso shots combined with hot water, creating a lighter and less intense coffee flavor. This beverage maintains the signature taste of espresso but dilutes it slightly with water, resulting in a less concentrated and less bitter drink. As for the calorie count, a standard Americano has virtually no calories.

On the other hand, a Starbucks Latte is made by blending espresso shots with steamed milk, resulting in a creamier and smoother texture. The milk manages to counteract the bitterness of the espresso, giving the latte a slightly sweet and more balanced flavor. The calorie count for a latte with whole milk is around 110 calories.

In terms of caffeine content, it is important to note that Americanos typically have less caffeine than lattes. This is due to the fact that Americanos contain fewer espresso shots.

To further customize these beverages to suit individual tastes, Starbucks allows customers to choose from a variety of milk alternatives, such as almond milk, soy milk, and oat milk. They also offer various sizes of these drinks, including Short, Tall, Grande, and Venti options.

In conclusion, Starbucks provides both White Americano and Latte options, allowing customers to enjoy tailored coffee experiences according to personal preferences. With various sizes and milk alternatives available, Starbucks ensures a satisfying experience for everyone who visits their chains worldwide.

Frothed Vs Steamed Milk

When discussing the differences between a White Americano and a Latte, the primary distinction lies in the type of milk used in each beverage. In this section, we will delve deeper into the variations between frothed milk and steamed milk to provide a more comprehensive understanding of these two popular coffee drinks.

Frothed milk is characterized by its light and airy texture, which results from the process of vigorously agitating the milk, either by using a handheld frother or shaking it in a sealed container. This creates a substantial amount of foam with larger, stiffer bubbles. Frothed milk can be utilized in both hot and cold drinks, with one of the most renowned beverages incorporating frothed milk being the cappuccino.

On the other hand, steamed milk is created using a steam wand that gently introduces air into the milk while simultaneously heating it. This process produces a delicately aerated milk with a silky microfoam consistency. Unlike frothed milk, steamed milk is always served hot and is commonly used in a more extensive array of coffee beverages.

To summarize the main differences:

  • Frothed Milk:

    • Can be hot or cold
    • Significant amount of foam
    • Larger, stiffer bubbles
    • Popular in foam-filled beverages, such as cappuccinos.
  • Steamed Milk:

    • Always hot
    • Delicately aerated
    • Silky microfoam
    • Widely used in various espresso-based drinks, including lattes.

Now that we have covered frothed and steamed milk, it becomes apparent how these two milk types affect the texture and composition of a White Americano and a Latte. A White Americano consists of espresso and hot water, with no added milk, maintaining a lower calorie count compared to a latte made with steamed milk. Conversely, a Latte incorporates steamed milk, offering a creamier and more calorie-dense beverage. This difference in milk preparation techniques contributes to the contrasting tastes and mouthfeel experiences that set these coffee varieties apart.

Crema And Foam

When discussing the differences between a White Americano and a Latte, it is essential to consider the unique characteristics of their crema and foam. Crema is a light layer of coffee foam that forms on top of an espresso shot, a crucial component in both drinks. The appearance and composition of crema and foam in these beverages vary due to their distinct brewing techniques and ingredients.

In a White Americano, the crema forms on top of the drink as a result of the espresso and hot water combination. The espresso is brewed first, followed by a quick pour of hot water to produce the crema layer. This leads to a more pronounced espresso flavor and a noticeable, albeit lighter, layer of espresso crema on the beverage's surface.

On the other hand, a Latte consists of espresso and steamed milk, creating a more mellow flavor with a creamier texture. The mixing of espresso and steamed milk produces a velvety foam on top, known as microfoam. Unlike the Americano, Lattes are often adorned with intricate latte art, showcasing the barista's skill and contributing to the overall aesthetic of the drink.

Though both drinks share espresso as a base ingredient, their crema and foam appearance, as well as their taste profiles, differ significantly:

  • White Americano: Espresso and hot water mixture, lighter layer of espresso crema, bold and intense flavor.
  • Latte: Espresso and steamed milk blend, thicker foam (microfoam), mellow and creamy flavor.

In conclusion, understanding the characteristics of crema and foam in a White Americano and a Latte will help consumers make informed decisions when choosing between these two popular coffee beverages. While the Americano offers a strong, bold coffee experience with a lighter crema layer, the Latte provides coffee enthusiasts with a smoother, creamier beverage topped with rich microfoam.

Espresso Blend

When looking into the espresso blend used for creating a delicious White Americano or Latte, it's essential to know the differences between these two popular coffee drinks. The espresso blend plays a significant role in determining their taste, texture, and overall experience.

The base for both White Americano and Latte is a high-quality espresso blend made from carefully selected beans. These blends often contain a mix of beans with different origins, optimizing the balance of acidity, body, and flavor to achieve the perfect espresso shot. Roasters typically aim for a medium to dark roast profile for espresso beans, which adds depth to the flavors while minimizing bitterness.

A White Americano is made by combining a double shot of espresso with an equal amount of hot water. This results in a strong, bold, and slightly acidic taste that highlights the flavors of the espresso blend. Since it only contains espresso and hot water, the White Americano has excellent clarity while still maintaining the essence of the espresso.

On the other hand, a Latte is created by adding steamed milk to a double shot of espresso. The milk introduces a creamier, smoother texture and a milder taste compared to the White Americano. The characteristics of the espresso blend can still be appreciated, but the focus shifts to a more balanced and harmonious fusion of espresso and milk flavors.

Here's a summary of the information in a table format:

Coffee Drink Ingredients Taste Texture
White Americano Espresso, Hot Water Strong, Bold, Slightly Acidic Clear, Light
Latte Espresso, Steamed Milk Creamy, Smooth, Balanced Creamy, Thick

Keep in mind that each roastery has its unique espresso blends, and the flavor profiles may vary among different recipes. The choice of blend significantly impacts the characteristics of the final White Americano or Latte. When it comes to impressing the palate, the espresso blend remains a central element in defining the taste and texture of these popular coffee drinks.

Water Content

In the process of comparing a white Americano to a latte, a significant factor to consider is the water content in these beverages. The primary distinction between these two coffee drinks lies in their blending components: espresso and hot water form a white Americano, while espresso and steamed milk create a latte.

The water content in a white Americano is higher compared to a latte. This higher volume of water stems from the method of preparation, which involves pouring hot water over a shot or two of espresso. The result is a more diluted coffee compared to the concentrated espresso shot, which affects the taste and intensity of the beverage. Essentially, the white Americano showcases the strong and bold flavor of espresso, diluted by the added water.

On the other hand, a latte is prepared by blending espresso with steamed milk, creating a creamier and smoother drink that is less watery than a white Americano. This combination of ingredients not only gives the latte a richer texture but also helps to balance the boldness of espresso with a milder and more mellow flavor. By introducing steamed milk into the mix, the water content is effectively reduced, resulting in a different coffee experience compared to the white Americano.

To summarize, the water content in a white Americano is more prominent because of the addition of hot water to espresso. In contrast, a latte relies on steamed milk, creating a creamier and less watery beverage. This fundamental difference in water content greatly influences the taste, texture, and overall experience of these two popular coffee drinks.

LatteLatte information
Tony Barlow

Tony Barlow

Majesty Coffee Technical Sales Expert - Meet the Team

Tony Barlow, with over a decade of experience in the coffee industry, is the go-to technical sales expert at Majesty Coffee. He's passionate about helping businesses find the right espresso equipment for their needs.

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