Flat White Recipe: How to Make the Perfect Flat White

The Best Answer:

The flat white is an espresso drink that has the perfect coffee to milk ratio, two shots of espresso topped with creamy steamed milk, and a layer of micro-foam on top. The intensity of the espresso shines through while you still get that velvety rich milky flavor.

A flat white is a traditional coffee drink that originated in Australia but has since spread to other countries.

It is made with espresso and milk, usually steamed. If you are looking for the perfect flat white recipe, then this blog post will provide you with all of the necessary information!

What Is A Flat White?

Flat White Recipe

A flat white is a small-sized latte with steamed whole milk and microfoam, usually topped with fresh foam. It can be said that it’s the love child of a macchiato and cappuccino.

Milk is heated in a steam pitcher until small bubbles form around the edge of the pitcher, without actually creating foam at this stage. The temperature of the milk should be about 160 degrees Fahrenheit (71 Celsius). Milk is poured into a cup to within one inch from the top rim so that there are two distinct layers, the top layer being about twice as thick as the milk below.

This is done by pouring steamed milk into an empty cup and then carefully spooning it back into a pitcher (or using a steam/frothing pitcher with a spout). The shot of espresso should be added to this inside-up layered effect. If desired, foam can be spooned on top but the essence of this drink is to remain flat on top.

Why is it called Flat White?

The name “flat white” was coined because the resulting beverage looks like flat milk or cream; it does not refer to its ingredients (such as whether there are two shots of espresso). So the “flat” refers to the thin layer of micro-foam on top while the “white” gives away that this is a coffee drink that contains milk.

Where does the Flat White come from?

The Flat White is actually thought to have originated in Australia although rumor has it, it might have been New Zealand either. It has gained popularity over the last few years and with coffee shops springing up all over the world, it’s become a favorite amongst many customers.

The flat white itself consists of espresso shots layered with micro-foam milk which gives it an intense flavor but with a smooth finish unlike that of a cappuccino.

It is a great drink to have mid-morning or after lunch when you don’t want anything too heavy. It’s also great for people who prefer a stronger coffee rather than sweeter drinks like lattes.

It has a unique taste that separates itself from a Latte, Cappuccino, Americano, etc.

How to Make the Perfect Flat White

Flat White Recipe

The flat white is made with espresso, steamed milk, and micro-foam which has been poured to create an even top layer. The result should be velvety smooth before it’s topped off with just one or two very small ‘cappuccino style’ bubbles.

The milk used in a Flat White is prepared differently from other types of coffee drinks. It’s steamed at the bottom of the pitcher with an espresso shot being poured over it, creating a layer known as “microfoam.”

While Flat White is a relatively new coffee drink in comparison to traditional drinks, it has already made quite an impression on coffee lovers worldwide. It’s easy to make at home with only two ingredients: espresso and whole milk.

The below guide needs a home espresso machine.

Step-By-Step Guide

Step 1: Brew 2 shots of espresso and pour them in a 6oz cup

Step 2: Grab a milk pitcher and add 3 oz of whole milk

Step 3: Dip the steam wand to the bottom of the pitcher and start steaming

Step 4: Once the pitcher feels too hot to the touch, turn of the steam wand

Step 5: Knock and swirl the pitcher on the kitchen counter to remove any bubbles

Step 6: Pour from a high angle on top of your espresso until the cup is almost full

Step 7: For a latte art effect, start lowering the pitcher towards the cup once it’s almost full

Enjoy!

Can I make a flat white without an espresso machine?

Yes, you can!

Although using an espresso machine is the most optimal way to brew a flat white, there is a way around it!

Instead of brewing the two shots of espresso using the espresso machine, you can use a Moka Pot or an Aeropress instead.

As for the milk frothing, you can use either a stainless steel frothing pitcher or a French Press to froth it. Just heat if first and then use one of the two to froth it. Another option would be to use an electric frother if you have one.

Whichever one you decide to go with, don’t forget to knock and swirl the milk container on the countertop because you want to remove any air bubbles and give it a smooth, velvety texture.

And if you feel like you have too much foam, worry not! You can simply remove some with a spoon.

Can I use non-dairy milk to make a flat white?

You certainly can, although you have to be aware of a couple of things.

Non-dairy milk might not result in the perfect thin micro-foam, diary milk would. So if you try it and it doesn’t work, don’t be disappointed, the non-dairy milk just has a different consistency. It’s still going to taste amazing!

Another thing to note, is that non-dairy milk will heat much faster than dairy milk, so be careful not to burn it!

Flat White Recipe

Flat White Recipe

Evelina
A flat white is a traditional coffee drink that originated in Australia but has since spread to other countries.
Prep Time 3 mins
Cook Time 2 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Coffee
Cuisine Australian
Servings 1 person
Calories 7 kcal

Equipment

  • Espresso Machine
  • Milk Pitcher
  • Espresso Cup

Ingredients
  

  • 3 oz Whole Milk
  • 2 shots Espresso Coffee

Instructions
 

  • Grab a milk pitcher and add 3 oz of whole milk
  •  Dip the steam wand to the bottom of the pitcher and start steaming
  • Once the pitcher feels too hot to the touch, turn of the steam wand
  •  Knock and swirl the pitcher on the kitchen counter to remove any bubbles
  • Pour from a high angle on top of your espresso until the cup is almost full
  • For a latte art effect, start lowering the pitcher towards the cup once it’s almost full
Keyword Flat White

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the ratio of a flat white?

A flat white is 2 oz. milk to 3/4 oz. espresso, but there are many variations on this basic recipe! Some people like their coffee blacker than others, so they will use less milk and more espresso in their drink.

There are also people who like extra foam, which means they will put more cream into the mix (and if you’re feeling adventurous, you can even try adding some chocolate or cinnamon!) So when it comes to what constitutes a ‘flat white,’ the answer depends entirely on your taste buds!

If, however, you want to go for the original flat white, then go for 2 oz. milk to 3/4 oz. espresso in a 6oz cup and a layer of micro-foam on top.

What is the difference between a latte and a flat white?

A latte usually has a single shot of espresso, milk, and steamed milk foam on top. The foam can be flavored with different ingredients like cinnamon or chocolate syrup.

However, the most important difference is that a latte has more milk than espresso. This means that there are fewer coffee grounds in your cup of joe than there would be in your average cup of drip coffee.

On the other hand, a flat white is made up with a double shot of espresso with just enough steamed milk to give it some body without making it too frothy.

Here’s how the two drinks differ:

  • the latte has more milk than the flat white
  • the flat white has a double shot of espresso while the latte has a single
  • the flavour profile of the latte is milky with a hint of espresso
  • the flat white has an intense flavour of espresso and a milder taste of milk
  • the latte is a heavier coffee drink because it contains a lot of milk
  • the latte has more calories than the flat white
  • the flat white has a higher caffeine content than the latte

How much milk is in a flat white?

A flat white is a caffeinated beverage made up of an espresso shot mixed with steamed milk. The ratio varies by region but ranges between 1/4 – 2/3 cup of frothed whole or skimmed milk per ounce of espresso; typically at least 4 ounces (120 ml) total volume.

It can be said that it’s the love child of a macchiato and cappuccino because it contains more milk than the macchiato and less than the cappuccino. When they invented it, the Australians were looking for an alternative to the frothy cappuccino, that’s why it’s called “flat” because there is a flat, thin layer of micro-foam on top.

Last Thoughts

If you are looking for a great-tasting coffee with an easy-to-make recipe, the flat white is your best bet. It’s delicious and simple to make at home!

We hope you enjoyed this flat white recipe! If you’re looking for more information on coffee, or want to learn how to make other types of caffeinated drinks, check out the rest of our recipes.

Keep in mind that different regions have their own methods and preferences when it comes to brewing coffee so if your favorite barista doesn’t serve the drink the way we’ve described here don’t be offended. It’s just a matter of preference really- not wrong or right. Happy Brewing!

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