Iced Latte vs Iced Macchiato: All The Differences

The Best Answer:

Just like the latte is different from the macchiato, so is the iced latte to the iced macchiato! Both drinks use espresso as their base but they have many differences in their strength and flavor profile.

Iced coffee is one of the most popular summertime drinks, but there are two very different versions that people often get confused about.

This blog post will give you all the information you need to know to make a decision on which drink is right for you!

To understand the differences between the two drinks let’s go back in time to find out how the original drinks, the latte, and the macchiato came to be!

The History of the Latte

Iced Latte vs Iced Macchiato

The latte probably originated in Italy, but there are no records of this until 1903 when one was served at Caffé Vergnano in Trieste, an Italian seaport city on the Adriatic Sea near Slovenia. It then spread like wildfire across Europe within the next few years.

The latte was popularized in America by Jerry Baldwin, Zev Siegl, and Gordon Bowker who founded Starbucks Coffee Company. They wanted to sell high-quality coffee beans but not just for people’s drip brew machines, so they decided to start a café where customers could sit down and drink espresso beverages.

The latte was the most popular drink sold at Starbucks until 1986 when they added new flavors to their menu and it became more of a specialty coffeehouse than just selling high-quality beans. In the latte’s home country of Italy, it is very popular and can be found at almost any café or bar where a customer can sit down to enjoy a drink without having to buy much else.

From the Latte to the Iced Latte

Iced lattes are very popular drinks in the summertime, but did you know that iced latte has some history to it? Here is a brief overview of how it became so popular.

The iced latte dates back to the early days of coffee before there were any espresso machines or even electricity. Iced drinks are popular around the world and have been since ancient times. Coffee houses in Europe started serving iced caffeinated beverages during colder months to keep customers inside where it was warm.

It became especially popular again when Starbucks introduced their version after acquiring a company called “Il Giornale”. In the 1980s, Starbucks started selling iced coffee drinks in Seattle and California. The cold brew method became popular when it was discovered that brewing at room temperature for a long time would result in an agreeable taste with less acidity than something brewed hot.

It’s hard to know exactly why some things catch on while others don’t, but it’s clear that iced lattes caught on because they’re delicious.

What is a Iced Latte?

Iced Latte vs Iced Macchiato

Iced lattes are a popular drink in the summer and can be made at home with whatever milk you like. All you need to make them is a single shot of espresso, some ice cubes, and cold milk.

I prefer to use almond or coconut milk because it makes them even creamier but any dairy-free alternative will work fine.

How To Make An Iced Latte

Ingredients: a shot of espresso, milk, ice cubes, and sweetener of your choice.

I like to use coconut palm sugar because it’s unrefined so has a nice caramel flavor but raw organic honey works also. You can add vanilla or cinnamon too for extra sweetness if you want.


  1. In a high powered blender combine the milk, ice cubes and sweetener.
  2. Blend until combined but not completely smooth because you want some chunks in your iced latte for that authentic coffeehouse taste!
  3. Now pour your espresso shot into a tall glass and top it with the milk
  4. If using honey add vanilla extract too or if using coconut palm sugar add cinnamon or both.


The History of the Macchiato

Iced Latte vs Iced Macchiato

The macchiato is a type of coffee drink that originated in Italy. The macchiato started in the 1950s and was originally made with an espresso shot topped off with steamed milk, but today there are many different variations to this popular beverage including macchiatos without any caffeine and ones prepared vegan-style by using soy milk.

What’s the difference between a macchiato and a latte macchiato?

The main difference between a macchiato and a latte macchiato is milk. A latte has more milk than a regular shot of espresso, while the opposite can be said about a macchiato.

A “macchiato” (pronounced mack-ee-ahh’toe) in Italian is a strong espresso that has just a bit of foam on top. You can enjoy one any time of day, but most people drink it in the morning or after dinner as an alternative to coffee.

A “latte macchiato” is made by using an espresso machine to steam milk until it is light and foamy, then pouring the steamed milk into a cup and topping it with a shot of espresso. The result is definitely not the same as your average macchiato!

From the Macchiato to the Iced Macchiato

The iced macchiato has been around for nearly 50 years. However, it wasn’t until the early 2000s that this drink started taking off in popularity.

While there are many theories about where the name “macchiato” comes from, one of these seems to have more plausibility than most others. According to Starbucks lore, the iced macchiato was originally called a “shaken espresso on ice,” and it is believed that this name comes from an Italian coffee drink that has been served in Italy for decades.

Many years have passed since then and the iced macchiato we all know and love is so much more than a shaken espresso on ice.

What is an Iced Macchiato?

In contrast to the iced latte, the iced macchiato contains two shots of espresso.

Through the years the drink has evolved so much that it now is a delicious iced coffee full of sweet flavors, milk, and cream.

How to make an Iced Macchiato

Ingredients: two shots of espresso, milk, ice cubes, whipped cream, flavored syrup, and flavored sauce


  1. Brew two shots of espresso and pour them into a tall glass full of ice cubes
  2. Top with 2 oz of milk of your choice
  3. Now grab your favourite flavoured syrup and flavoured sauce and add a squeeze of both
  4. Top it all with some whipped cream, and why not, some chocolate savings!


Iced Latte vs. Iced Macchiato

Iced Latte vs Iced Macchiato

Judging by all the information and the recipes above, you can probably already tell some of the main differences between the two drinks!

Let’s break them down:

  1. The iced latte is not as strong as the iced macchiato as it only contains a single shot of espresso. That doesn’t only mean it contains more caffeine, it also means the coffee flavour of the iced macchiato is much more intense than the one in the iced latte.
  2. The iced macchiato looks more visually pleasing than the iced latte because it has many layers, such as espresso, milk, flavoured sauce and whipped cream.
  3. The iced latte is not as sweet as the iced macchiato as it doesn’t contain any syrup or sauce. You can of course add some form of sweetener if you prefer. But in general the iced macchiato contains more calories and is not as healthy as the iced latte.
  4. The two drinks have a difference in texture as well. When you ship on an iced latte you experience a thick almost milkshake-y texture because the milk is blended. That’s not the case with the iced macchiato.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a macchiato stronger than a latte?

A macchiato is stronger than a latte because it contains two shots of espresso and therefore it doesn’t just taste more intense, it also has more caffeine in it.

Is a Latte Macchiato the same as a latte?

No, a latte macchiato is a different drink than a latte although they might taste similar in flavor. A latte macchiato is made by steaming milk, then pouring it into a cup and topping it with two shots of espresso.

A latte on the other hand contains a single shot of espresso, topped with steamed milk and a layer of micro-foam.

Which is better iced latte or iced coffee?

Iced latte is actually just a type of iced coffee so you can’t really compare them. There are many types of iced coffees that are different from an iced latte and knowing their differences will definitely help you understand which one is right for you.

Last Thoughts

A lot of people think that an iced latte and an iced macchiato are the same things, but this isn’t true! Although both drinks involve milk and espresso, they have some distinct differences, like coffee quantity and additional flavorings.

Which do you think sounds better? An icy cold caffeinated beverage or something with a lower amount of caffeine so as not to disturb your sleep cycle too much? We hope this article helps you decide which drink is best suited for your tastes.

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