How to Use an Espresso Machine for More Than Just a Latte
September 22, 2020
Hot beverage season is approaching, and we’ve all got lattes on the brain, right? And if you want a coffeehouse version at home, you’ll need an espresso maker, which can feel like a splurge purchase for a one-task kitchen appliance. But it’s time to start thinking beyond the basic latte, and expand into how to use an espresso machine a little differently than you might expect.
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Let’s get started by talking about some of the basic drinks that you can make with your espresso machine. There are a ton of variations on these, but really simply, each drink in this list requires nothing other than espresso, and either water or milk.
- Espresso Shot: The true basic, this is exactly what it sounds like: a shot of espresso, fresh out of the machine. It’s about 1oz, and contains a ton of rich, smooth flavor.
- Latte: An espresso shot combined with plenty of steamed milk and topped with a thin layer of foam. The foam is created by incorporating more air when steaming, so it is frothier and lighter.
- Cappuccino: An espresso shot topped with equal parts steamed milk and foam. Unlike a latte, a cappuccino is layered, which gives it a stronger coffee flavor.
- Macchiato: The term means “marked” in Italian, but can describe two different drinks. An espresso macchiato is an espresso shot with a dollop of foam on top. A latte macchiato is steamed milk with an espresso shot poured on top.
- Americano: The Italian answer to regular drip coffee, this contains an espresso shot combined with hot water, for a more mellow taste.
The Best Espresso Makers & Accessories
You can make all of these drinks with my favorite espresso maker. You may also want to expand your arsenal to include a few accessories, like a milk frothing pitcher, measuring shot glasses, or a simple coffee grinder. I like this machine because it does everything I need it to do, and it fits nicely on my counter.
However, if you’re looking for an upgrade, try this coffee-shop quality version. On the other hand, if you are looking for a simple add-on to your classic coffee maker, you can use a milk frothing wand.
Espresso Machine Drinks
Beyond the classics, it’s time to have a little fun. These drinks aren’t too much of a stretch for your espresso machine. But they will get you a step beyond the basics I mentioned before. These selections range in flavors, size, and sweetness, but you are sure to find a new favorite!
Thinking about getting an espresso machine? Here are 23 recipes that will convince you!
Espresso Breakfast Treats
Need a bite to go with your morning coffee? You can use freshly brewed espresso in plenty of delicious breakfasts to get your day going. You know the rich coffee flavor means whatever you choose will pair perfectly with your hot beverage.
Espresso Desserts and Sweets
Starting your day with coffee is a classic move, but how about bookending by adding in a decadent dessert as well. Coffee is a classic ingredient in tiramisu, works excellently to add flavor to other baked goods, and it makes a rich, creamy custard. You can’t make a wrong choice here!
Tiramisu & Baked Desserts
Creams & Custards
Cold & Frozen
A nice warm cappuccino is perfect for these brisk fall mornings, but don’t pack up your espresso machine in the spring. You can use it for frozen and cold beverages in addition to the hot ones. Plus, freshly brewed espresso pairs perfectly with ice cream for a classic affogato.