Food & Coffee

How To Make an Iced Latte at Home

There’s nothing quite like the joy of sipping on a creamy, chilled latte, no matter the season. Whether you’re a seasoned coffee lover or someone who enjoys the occasional café splurge, mastering the art of the iced latte at home can turn your kitchen into your new favorite coffee shop.

We started making iced lattes at home many years ago when we realized we were opening a fortune at Starbucks. We purchased our first espresso machine and to to work at perfecting what we felt was the perfect iced latte.

What Is An Iced Latte?

At its heart, an iced latte blends velvety espresso with cold milk and ice, creating a drink that’s as refreshing as it is luxurious. The key here is the espresso—a rich, concentrated coffee that sets the iced latte apart from its more diluted cousin, the iced coffee. This magical combination not only cools you down but also delivers a sophisticated, smooth coffee experience that’s hard to beat.

How to make an iced latte

Although your local coffee shop makes it look like a science, I have confidence that if I can do this, you can too.

Here are the steps for making a simple iced latte.

Ice and Milk

We like to first pour milk about halfway or a little more in the glass. We like Horizon 2 percent Organic Milk, but that is just our preference. We then like to use a hand-held frother to give the milk a creamier, velvety texture.

Some people like whole milk in their lattes and you can also use oat milk.

Espresso: The Machine

Now, it’s time for the espresso. Our favorite machine is the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine. From the bean hopper to the steam wand of the machine, each part plays a crucial role in the espresso-making process. Don’t rush through this part; understanding your machine is key to making great coffee.

Find the Right Grind

The grind size of your coffee beans is critical. The Barista Express comes with an integrated grinder that allows you to control the grind size. For espresso, you’ll want a fine grind, but the exact setting can vary based on the bean type and your taste preference. Experiment with different settings to find what works best for you.

We use Lavazza beans. We have tried a lot of different beans, and these are the best!

Nail the Tamp

Once your beans are ground, it’s time to tamp them into the portafilter. The goal here is to apply even pressure to create a compact, level bed of coffee. This ensures an even extraction and prevents water from finding a path of least resistance. A good tamp is firm but not too hard—think of it as packing down brown sugar.

Master the Extraction

Extraction is where the magic happens. Lock the portafilter into the machine, select your shot size, and start the extraction. A good espresso shot should take about 25-30 seconds from the moment you start the pump. If it’s too fast, your coffee will be under-extracted (sour); too slow, and it’ll be over-extracted (bitter). Adjust your grind size and tamp pressure as needed to hit that sweet spot.

Pour the shots over your glass of iced milk. Depending on the size of the glass you are using and how strong you like your lattes, you may want to add another shot.

How To Make An Iced Vanilla Latte

Let’s add a twist to our classic with a dash of sweetness. The iced vanilla latte is a crowd-pleaser, known for its harmonious blend of bold coffee and soft, sweet vanilla.


  • 1-2 shots of espresso
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of vanilla syrup, adjust to taste
  • Ice cubes
  • Cold milk (any variety to suit your preference)


  1. Brew Your Espresso: Start by brewing a shot of rich espresso. If you don’t have an espresso machine, a strong brew of coffee can also work in a pinch.
  2. Vanilla Syrup: Add the vanilla syrup to a glass. Pour the hot espresso over it and stir well to combine the flavors beautifully.
  3. Ice, Ice, Baby: Fill the glass with ice cubes, all the way to the top.
  4. Milk It: Pour cold milk over the ice and espresso mixture, leaving a bit of room at the top for it to froth up a little.
  5. Stir and Enjoy: Give it a gentle stir to mix everything together, and voilà! Your homemade iced vanilla latte is ready to be savored.

How To Make An Iced Caramel Latte

If you’re in the mood for something decadently sweet with a hint of sophistication, the iced caramel latte is your go-to.


  • 1-2 shots of espresso
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons of caramel syrup, adjust based on your sweet tooth
  • Ice cubes
  • Cold milk
  • Optional: whipped cream and caramel drizzle for garnish


  1. Espresso First: Brew your espresso shot.
  2. Caramel Time: In a glass, mix the espresso with caramel syrup. Stir well to ensure the coffee and caramel become one.
  3. Load Up on Ice: Fill the glass with ice cubes to the brim.
  4. Add the Milk: Pour in the cold milk over the ice and espresso, creating that beautiful iced latte cascade.
  5. Garnish (Optional): For an extra treat, top with whipped cream and a drizzle of caramel.
  6. Stir and Indulge: Mix it all and dive into your homemade iced caramel latte.

Final Thoughts

Crafting the perfect iced latte at home is an art form that’s both rewarding and delicious. By following these steps and experimenting with your favorite flavors, you can enjoy the perfect café-quality drink any time of year. So, go ahead, become your own barista, and let the world of iced lattes add a little extra joy to your daily routine.

Previous Post Next Post

You may also like


  • Reply Mary Anne

    That looks so good! I agree… The initial investment may be big but it saves money in the long run and I love the look of that machine!!!

    September 27, 2018 at 12:42 am
    • Reply Brooke

      They are very good! Now we like our lattes at home better than Starbucks. I also love the look of the machine. It’s one appliance I don’t mind leaving out on the counter.

      September 28, 2018 at 1:48 am
  • Reply Lura

    Did you happen to look at any esspresso machines that are not fully automatic. My husband and I can’t agree. He wants to do the process and I want automatic. Any suggestions? Thanks! Ps I’m anxiously waiting more info on your new home!!!!! We are in the same process however, we are building very small. Planning a aging in place 1 story retirement home on a lake. Probably no bigger than 1500 to 1800 square ft including a 2 car garage. Love your blog.

    January 26, 2019 at 5:14 pm
    • Reply Brooke

      Hi Lura,

      Thanks! So glad you like our blog.

      Our first espresso machines were manual ones. Then later we got our first automatic, and now wouldn’t have anything else.

      We’ll be posting more info about our new build very soon. I’m sure you are excited about your build! Sounds like it will be great!

      January 27, 2019 at 2:09 am
  • Reply Susie Kerney

    Maybe I can come over and you make me one of these delicious drinks?!?!

    January 18, 2020 at 9:27 pm
    • Reply Henry

      Yes, come on over Susie!

      January 20, 2020 at 3:15 pm

    Leave a Reply