Want a delicious way to enjoy the rich flavors of espresso? Try this Starbucks copycat flat white recipe. It's a simple medley of espresso and steamed milk that will please all coffee lovers. Whip this up in a few minutes, and you'll be sipping on something delicious!
Fortunately, a flat white only contains two basic ingredients: espresso and milk. How to make the espresso is up to you, but don't worry if you don't have a fancy machine; this stovetop moka pot is what I've used with great results. You won't get the crema on the espresso as you would with a machine, but it's a good substitute.
Starbucks recommends using whole milk for the best texture. However, since the milk doesn't have to be really frothy for this recipe, you can use a plant-based barista milk blend for this recipe if you're looking for a dairy-free option.
How to Make
Start by grinding the coffee beans until they're just a little coarser than table salt.
Next, you'll need to make the espresso. I'm using a moka pot since I don't have a espresso machine. To use the moka pot, fill the hopper with the grounds and lightly tamp them down. Fill the lower chamber with water, right below the valve.
Screw on the upper chamber and place the moka pot on medium-high heat until the coffee starts coming out, then lower the heat to low. Once the coffee has stopped coming out, remove the moka pot from the heat and gently stir the coffee.
Heat the milk to 140 F. I find that 30-35 seconds in the microwave is long enough.
Froth the milk by using a milk frother or by shaking it vigorously in a mason jar.
Now, pour 2 shots (¼ cup) of espresso into a glass mug.
Top it up with the steamed milk, and keep pouring until you have a dot of foam on top.
Enjoy your flat white while it's hot!
A latte contains more steamed milk than a flat white, and has a 5 mm layer of foam on top. Otherwise, these two drinks are very similar. The flat white gets its name from being topped with a thin, flat layer of "microfoamed" milk, which is just enough to create some latte art. Flat whites are also smaller in size--typically around 6 fl oz--rather than the 10-12 ounce size popular with lattes.
Flat white actually originated in either Australia or New Zealand in the 1980s and eventually spread to London and then to the United States, where it has become very popular.
Since this drink is made exclusively from espresso and milk, the exact tasting notes of a flat white depend heavily upon the taste of the espresso. Generally speaking, a flat white has a strong coffee flavor with a creamy, velvety texture from the steamed and foamed milk. When you're making flat whites at home, make sure to use recently roasted and freshly ground coffee beans for the very best-tasting espresso.
Two shots is the typical serving. Each shot is 1 fluid ounce, or 2 tablespoons, so two shots would be 4 tablespoons of espresso.
By default, they don't have sugar added, since this drink is a simple medley of steamed milk and espresso. However, you can easily make yours with some sugar if you prefer! Simply dissolve it in the espresso before adding the steamed milk.
- Use coffee beans that have been recently roasted and freshly ground for the best taste.
- Dark or medium-dark roast beans are the best choice for espresso, but medium roast can work as well.
- Be sure to use whole milk for the creamiest textured foam and volume.
- When using a frother, move it in slow circles at the bottom of the milk until it begins to thicken, then gradually bring it closer to the surface. The milk is done when it has doubled in volume.
Other Starbucks Drinks To Try
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Flat White Recipe (Starbucks Copycat)
- 2 shots espresso, ¼ cup
- ⅓ cup whole milk
- Sugar, if desired
- Prepare the espresso with your preferred method and pour it into a glass mug. If you're adding sugar, stir it into the espresso until it has dissolved.
- Heat the milk in a saucepan or in a glass jar in the microwave until it reaches 140°F. (I like to use my digital thermometer for this step.) Now, froth it with a milk frother or shake it vigorously in a mason jar until it has doubled in volume. Move the milk frother in slow circles at the bottom of the jar, then as it starts to thicken, bring it halfway up the milk.
- Quickly pour the steamed milk into the espresso, then slow down as the foam starts pouring out. Stop when you have a dot of milk foam in the center, then make some latte art if desired.
- Enjoy the flat white immediately.
- Choosing the beans. It's recommended to use a roast that's specifically made for espresso, such as Starbucks Espresso Roast. My favorite roast for espresso is Starbucks Italian Roast, but for the this recipe I tried using Cafe Verona.
- Don't have an espresso machine? The cheapest substitute is a moka pot. Grind some fresh, dark roast beans until they're a little bit coarser than table salt, lightly tamp the grinds into the hopper, and fill the moka pot with water just below the valve. Place over medium-high heat until the espresso starts coming out, then lower the heat to low. Once the espresso stops coming out, remove the moka pot from the heat and gently stir the espresso.