How to make a flat white coffee

How To Make a Flat White coffee

Ever wondered how to make a flat white coffee? Originally from Australia, the flat white coffee has become very popular. It is well advertised by the big coffee shop chains showing just how popular the flat white currently is.

More and more people looking to make their favorite coffee at home, some are buying specialised coffee machines to help them achieve this. Some of these can be made without using a machine.

Read on to find out how you can and what you need to do it.

So what is a flat white?

The simplest description is that it’s a sort of latte-cappuccino hybrid. Stronger and less milky than a latte, it removes the frothy, bland top of the cappuccino.

The balanced combination of a smooth, velvety microfoam blended with espresso creates a drink that provides a coffee hit from the first sip to the last.

If you’ve fallen in love with this popular coffee trend, then here’s how to make a flat white coffee at home.

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Some things you may need

Here are some of the things that you should have in hand

  • If possible, freshly ground coffee ( if you don’t have one we have some inexpensive manual grinders)
  • Fresh milk –  Full fat works better for the making foam I find but skimmed or semi-skimmed will be ok
  • A coffee machine that will make espressos for you
  • A milk Steamer or frother
  • If you have one a thermometer to test the water temperature
  • Last but not least – A decent large enough coffee cup to drink it out of.

The perfect espresso

Making a flat white relies on a good espresso. Achieving this is dependent on these factors:

  • Good quality coffee beans
  • The right grind consistency
  • The right amount of coffee
  • The right water temperature
  • A warm cup

The reason for a good quality coffee bean is obvious, but the reason for the grind size might not be. The finer the grind, the more easily the coffee flavour is extracted, but a fine grind can be dense, and slow the rate of water flow through the beans, making it too bitter.

Too coarse a grind, and you may not get a strong enough coffee. The volume of coffee grind is also important for achieving the right strength. A single espresso needs 7g of coffee, while a double requires 14g.

Water temperature is also key. Too hot and you’ll burn the beans, leading to a bitter flavour. Too cold and it won’t extract the flavour adequately, leading to a weak coffee. And don’t forget to pre-warm the cup, or the espresso will lose too much heat.

I have an AeroPress coffee maker at home, with a little experimenting you can use something like this to make a pretty decent espresso.

I personally like to use a double shot of espresso when I am making flat whites.  If you are lucky enough to have an espresso machine then this will be an easy task.

The perfect microfoam

So now you’ve made the perfect espresso, it’s time to create the perfect velvety microfoam. As the name suggests, the size of the air bubbles is crucial. You want a finely bubbled, thick velvety texture to the frothed milk, which you’ll need a steam wand to steam the milk.

A flat white contains around four ounces of foamed milk. Getting the proportion right is key as the milk is there to complement the coffee, not overwhelm it. As the milk’s volume will roughly double during steaming, measure out around two and a half ounces per cup. As cold milk makes better bubbles, ensure that both your milk and jug are chilled.

To create the perfect microbubbles, hold the tip of the steamer just under the surface of the milk, at a slight angle, then swirl it around as it heats. Although the milk needs to be warm, it shouldn’t be too hot. If the milk jug is too uncomfortable to hold, you’ve overheated it.

The perfect blend

Now it’s time to combine the espresso and microfoam. Holding the jug a little way above the cup, simply pour the milk into the centre of the cup for the perfect blend.

And that’s it! You now know how to make one of these coffees at home that you’ll love.


There are so many recipes online that can help you should you still not feel confident about what you are doing, here is one from the bbc website 

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Last update on 2020-08-05 at 04:49 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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