How To Make A Macchiato Like A Pro Barista

Curious about making a real macchiato at home? Unlike the sweet versions from popular coffee shops, this traditional Italian drink stands out on its own. Follow our guide to craft an authentic macchiato in your kitchen – you might find it even more enjoyable than the sugary alternatives!

Before we dive into the details, here are a few important notes:
- While 1% or 2% milk is standard, you can use almost any milk or plant-based milk substitute since a macchiato only requires a dollop of foam on top.
- Ensure you have a grinder capable of a fine espresso grind. If you don’t, purchase espresso beans from a local coffee shop and have them grind the beans for you.
- If your espresso machine lacks a milk frothing system, you’ll need a separate milk frother.

Step 1: Prepare the Espresso​

First, grind your coffee beans finely if they aren’t pre-ground. Use an espresso machine to pull a double espresso shot, which should yield about 2 oz.

For the best results, use an espresso machine with 9 bars of pressure. While a Moka pot or Aeropress can make strong coffee, they won’t provide the rich, creamy body that a true espresso machine can. A Nespresso machine can be a decent substitute, though it might not satisfy strict traditionalists.

Pro tip: You don’t need to use specific espresso beans. Any coffee beans can work as long as they’re ground finely enough. However, darker roasts are usually easier to extract, so use your preferred coffee variety.

Step 2: Froth the Milk​

Next, use a milk frother or the steam wand on your espresso machine to froth a small amount of milk. Typically, you’ll need about an ounce or less of milk, but most frothing devices require more to function properly. Avoid adding too much milk, as it can upset the drink’s balance. The goal is to enhance the coffee’s flavor without overpowering it.

Aim for airy foam like you would for a cappuccino, rather than the creamy microfoam used for lattes.

Pro tip: If you don’t have a steam wand or frother, use a French press to foam the milk. This method won’t produce the fine microfoam needed for latte art but is perfect for a simple dollop on a macchiato.

Step 3: Assemble and Enjoy​

Top your espresso shot with a dollop of foamed milk and savor your homemade macchiato. While some might add sugar, this isn’t traditional.

Enjoy your authentic macchiato!

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