Coffee Ratios

coffee to water ratios, how to make coffee, ratio of espresso to steamed milk, how much coffee to use

Coffee to Water to Milk

You’ll want to bookmark this page, as we’ve got you covered with the following:

  • Coffee-to-water ratios
  • Espresso-to-steamed milk ratios
  • We’ve even got some coffee-to-espresso ratios!

Pick a beverage, and the flip card reveals everything you need to know to make the perfect coffee and espresso-based beverages.

Black Eye

A Black Eye is 2 shots/ounces of espresso added to an 8-ounce cup of brewed coffee. Some Black Eyes are made with ristretto instead of espresso.

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Café au Lait

A Café au Lait is made with coffee (not espresso). It's equal parts coffee and steamed milk.

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Caffè Americano

An Americano has a 2:4 ratio of espresso and hot water. A typical serving is 2 ounces/shots of espresso to 4 ounces of hot water. The water is poured onto the espresso to dissolve the crema.

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Café Bombon

A Café Bombon is made with equal parts espresso and sweetened condensed milk (warm the milk first).

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Cafe Breve Latte

Equal parts espresso and steamed half & half (not regular milk) - plus a dollop of microfoam made from half & half.

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Café Con Helio

An iced coffee drink - no need to remember a recipe. Pour freshly brewed (strong) coffee over ice and sweeten to taste.

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Café Creme

This French beverage is made with equal parts of espresso and steamed whole milk with a dollop of froth or dry foam on top.

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Café Mocha

The Café Mocha is a 2:1:2 beverage - 2 parts of espresso, 1 part of steamed milk, and 2 parts of hot chocolate. It's also served with either a whipped cream or foam topper.

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Café Noisette

A Café Noisette is a shot (one ounce) of espresso with just a dollop of froth or dry foam. It's the same as a Macchiato.

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Café Vienna

You can easily identify a Café Vienna by the whipped cream topping that takes the place of steamed milk or microfoam. It's made with equal parts espresso and water and as much whipped cream to make you happy!

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Caffè Correto

Inside of water or steamed milk, a Caffé Correto is made with a shot of espresso and a shot of liquor (brandy, grappa, sambuca).

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Caffè Latte

A Caffè Latte (or Latte) has more steamed milk than most espresso-based beverages. It's made with a 1:5 ratio of espresso and steamed milk with its signature foam design on top.

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Cappuccino

The Cappuccino ratio is easy to remember as it's 1:1:1. It's made with equal parts of espresso, steamed milk, and dry foam. Many coffee drinks are topped with a dollop of foam, but there's much more in a Cappuccino.

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Cold Brew

Not to be confused with iced coffee, cold brew is a coffee-making technique where coffee steeps in room temperature or cold water for a day or so. The ratio of coffee to water is between 1:4 and 1:8, depending on the length of the brew process.

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Con Panna

The smaller, stronger version of a Cafe Vienna, a Con Panna (Espresso Con Panna) is one part espresso, and one part whipped cream. There's no coffee:water ratio because water isn't added.

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Cortadito

Like a Cappuccino, a Cortadito's recipe is based on a simple 1:1:1 ratio, but the ingredients are different. A Cortadito is one part espresso, one part steamed evaporated milk, and one part espuma.

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Cortado

The Cortado is based on a 1:1 ratio. It's one part espresso, and one part steamed milk (no foam added).

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Café Cubano

The Café Cubano is a Cuban Espresso. It's a milk-free beverage made with one part espresso and one part espuma (froth made by espresso and demerara sugar).

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Dalgona Coffee

The popular whipped coffee is made with a 1:1:1 ratio of espresso powder, hot water, and sugar - one tablespoon of each. Then it's rounded out with one cup of hot or cold milk. Click More Info for the recipe.

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Dead Eye

A Dead Eye is 3 shots/ounces of espresso added to an 8-ounce cup of brewed coffee. Some Dead Eyes are made with ristretto instead of espresso.

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Doppio

A Doppio is a double shot of espresso. Instead of a long pull, the flavor is more intense, as both ingredients are doubled to approximately 3.5 teaspoons of espresso grounds and 2 ounces of water.

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Drip Coffee

You can adjust up or down based on your strong vs. weak coffee preferences, but the best starting coffee-to-water ratio is 2 tablespoons of coffee grounds to 8 ounces of water.

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Dry Cappuccino

A Dry Cappuccino doesn't have steamed milk. Instead, it's prepared with a 1:2 ratio - one part of espresso to two parts of dry foam or froth.

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Espresso

While espresso is the base for many coffee variations, it also stands alone as a strong coffee with crema. The typical recipe is an ounce of water forced with high pressure through 1 3/4 teaspoons of finely ground coffee for 20-30 seconds.

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Flat White

Like a Dry Cappuccino, a Flat White isn't made with steamed milk. It has a 1:2 ratio with one part Ristretto and two parts microfoam.

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French Press

French Press produces coffee instead of espresso. It can also create froth if you don't have another means. The ratio of coffee to water is two tablespoons to eight ounces, and use a coarser bean grind.

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Galão

The Galão is a Portugese coffee beverage served in a tall glass. It's one part espresso to three parts milk froth.

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Latte Macchiato

Don't confuse a Macchiato for a Latte Macchiato, as they're quite different. The Latte Macchiato is one part of espresso, five parts of steamed milk, and a dollop of foam.

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Lungo

A Lungo is a long-pull espresso. It uses the same ingredients as a Solo (1 3/4 teaspoons of finely ground coffee), but brews longer to create a two-ounce serving.

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Macchiato

The Macchiato is the same as Cafe Noisette. It's a twist on an espresso with one part of espresso and a dollop of milk foam.

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Mocha Breve

The chocolatey twist on a Cafe Breve is made with a 1:1:1:1 ratio. It's equal parts of espresso, steamed half & half, hot chocolate, and microfoam.

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Piccolo Latte

You could call it small, but Piccolo sounds so much better! A Piccolo Latte is a half-size Latte made with one part of espresso, two parts of steamed milk, and one part of microfoam.

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Pour-Over

You can make a Pour-Over with any number of coffee-making systems, like Melitta or Chemex. But the recipe is the same as drip coffee, which an average ratio of 2 tablespoons of ground coffee to 8 ounces of water.

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Red Eye

A Red Eye is one shot/ounce of espresso added to an eight-ounce cup of brewed coffee. Some Red Eyes are made with ristretto instead of espresso.

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Ristretto

A Ristretto is made just like an espresso with 1 3/4 teaspoons of fine coffee grounds, but it's a shorter pull. So, instead of a one-ounce serving, you get approximately 3/4 of an ounce.

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Solo or Short

Solo or Short are other nicknames for a one-ounce serving of espresso. The typical recipe is an ounce of water forced with high pressure through 1 3/4 teaspoons of finely ground coffee for 20-30 seconds.

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Spillin' the Beans, coffee
Spillin' the Beans, coffee

Spillin’ the Beans Espresso Making Alternatives

Moka Pot

AeroPress

Cezve (or Ibrik)

Nespresso machine

Coffee sticks

Spillin' the Beans, coffee
Spillin' the Beans, coffee
Spillin' the Beans, coffee

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the coffee-to-water ratio for drip coffee?

Coffee ratios are always a bit fuzzy, as they’re adjusted for stronger or weaker brew preferences. However, a good starting point for Drip, French Press, or Pour-Over coffee is 2 tablespoons of coffee grounds for every 8-ounce cup of water.

Is there a typical ratio of coffee to steamed milk for Caffe Lattes?

Yes. Like the coffee-to-water ratio, coffee-to-milk ratios are also just a suggestion and can be adjusted for different tastes. But a basic recipe for a Caffe Latte is one part espresso to five parts steamed milk and one part milk froth.

Do you use equal parts coffee and milk for Cafe au Lait?

A Cafe au Lait, also known as a Cafe Misto, is equal parts strong coffee (not espresso) and steamed milk.

Spillin' the Beans, coffee
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