Latte vs. Macchiato: What is the difference between Latte and Macchiato?

Latte vs. Macchiato: Let’s Discuss their Differences, Similarities, Their Pros & Cons, answer some FAQs, and finally, define Which Is Better.
Latte vs. Macchiato: Top 11 Differences, Pros & Cons

Latte vs. Macchiato: The difference between Latte and Macchiato lies in the proportion of ingredients that goes into brewing a cup of coffee. Where Latte is milder with less espresso and more milk added to it, Macchiato has a strong espresso flavor owing to just a dash of milk that goes in it. 

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Defining Latte and Macchiato for understanding

What is Latte?

A Latte is a form of coffee that is prepared by adding milk to espresso and topped with a layer of milk foam.

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What is Macchiato?

Macchiato is an espresso drink made by adding a dash of milk to espresso. Traditionally, the milk foam is added to espresso but the modern versions might contain milk or both foam and milk. However, the overall proportion of milk to espresso remains the same.

Considering Macchiato vs. Latte similarities for clarity

  • Both Macchiato and Latte are forms of coffee.
  • These drinks originated in Italy.
  • Both contain espresso and milk as their base ingredients.
  • Both Macchiato and Latte now have different variants.

Is Macchiato stronger than Latte?

Yes, Macchiato is stronger than Latte. Though the amount of espresso that goes into the cup is the same in both, the difference is made by the amount of milk. Just a dash of milk makes the Macchiato retain the strong punch of the caffeine against a lot of steamed milk going into Latte that adds creaminess and subtlety to the strong coffee flavors. 

Which is sweeter, Macchiato, or Latte?

Since Latte has more steamed milk and a milk foam added to the top, there comes an inherent sweetness in the cup. At the same time, Macchiato has a more aromatic and strong flavor to it. Also, traditional Macchiatos are less sweet than modern Macchiatos as modern cups have a sweetener or caramel added to them. 

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Does a Latte or a Macchiato have more caffeine?

A Macchiato carries more caffeine than Latte. Since Cappuccino is the most popular choice, a latte vs. cappuccino vs. macchiato difference will explain the difference better. A cup of Cappuccino carries equal parts of espresso, steamed milk, and milk foam. A Latte typically has around 15% coffee and 85% milk added to it. And a Macchiato contains around 90% coffee and just 10% milk. This makes Macchiato much heavier in caffeine content when compared to Latte. 

What’s the point of a Macchiato?

The goal of Macchiato is to retain the intense aromatic flavors of espresso by adding just a little creaminess in a bold espresso shot. One sip gives a burst of caffeine with a dash of smooth milky feel. 

Should you stir a Macchiato? 

Traditionally, a Macchiato is not stirred. That is because Machhiato isn’t meant to offer a balanced and blended flavor like a Latte. Rather every layer has to be tasted as it comes; the milk foam, steamed milk, and a strong espresso shot at the end. 

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Listing the pros and cons of Latte and Macchiato

Pros of Latte

  • The flavors of the coffee are blended as one.
  • A cup of Latte is much creamier due to the milk foam, and extra milk added.
  • Latte is sweeter and less bold.
  • It is less acidic.

Cons of Latte

  • The aromatic flavor of espresso is too mild for strong coffee lovers. 
  • With more than 80% of milk, a cup of Latte happens to be comparatively high in fat.

Pros of Macchiato 

  • With just a dash of milk added, it is closer to an espresso’s aroma and flavor.
  • It is a great coffee option for those looking to shed some pounds.

Cons of Macchiato

  • All the flavors are tasted layer by layer, thereby lacking a blended flavor in every sip.
  • The unavailability of high-quality coffee beans can make the drink fall flat on its face as espresso is the very-star of the drink. 
  • It is more acidic.

Top 11 differences between Latte and Macchiato

Milk additionA Latte contains a much more quantity of milk than espresso.A Macchiato contains a much less quantity of milk than espresso.
Strength of flavorIt has a mild flavor due to the addition of abundant milk. It has a bold aka strong espresso flavor as only a dash of milk goes into it.
Fat contentThe fat content is high as more milk is added.The fat content is low as less milk is added.
Calorie intakeA lot of calorie intake is involved here because of the high milk content.Calorie intake is a lot less than Latte.
Serving temperatureIt can be served both hot or cold. It is served hot only.
FlavorIt has a sweeter flavor because a lot less espresso is used against milk in this drink.It has a bitter flavor since a lot more espresso is used against milk in this drink.
SuitabilityIt is suitable for you if you like your coffee milder and creamier.It is suitable for you if you are a coffee lover and like the bold espresso flavor.
Acidic natureIt is a lot less acidic as more the addition of milk to espresso, less acidic is the final drink.It is more acidic as only a dash of milk goes into its preparation.
ColorIt is lighter in color due to the presence of more milk.It is darker in color due to the presence of more espresso.
Weight watchersIt is not a wise choice if you are on a weight loss diet.It is one of the best drinks for weight watchers.
VariantsYou will find traditional Latte, Latte Macchiato, Irish Latte, Caramel Latte, Iced Latte, and many more.You can find Espresso Macchiato, Latte Macchiato, Long Macchiato, Short Macchiato, Caramel Macchiato among many others. 

Is Macchiato better than Latte?

Conclusion: Macchiato and Latte are completely different and can be considered over another at different times. Such factors involve the mood and preference of an individual. That said, a strong coffee lover would find Macchiato better over the other. However, if you like your coffee mild and creamy, you’d love Latte more.

Comparison Chart

Latte vs. Macchiato: Let’s Discuss their Differences, Similarities, Their Pros & Cons, answer some FAQs, and finally, define Which Is Better.

Comparison Video

Macchiato vs. Latte: Differences In These Steamed Milk And Espresso Based Drinks
Alex Stantor
Alex Stantor

Alex Stantor is a Sorbonne University (Paris, France) graduate in Philosophy and Data Analysis. Currently, he is an Author and Researcher at Difference 101, he writes articles/blog posts on topics such as "thinking differently" and "the importance of difference". Alex is a passionate advocate of diversity in the workplace and in companies, and diversity and inclusion in corporate communications. He currently lives in Brooklyn.

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