There are many different types of coffee drinks to choose from and figuring out the differences between them can be a challenge.

This post will show you the differences between cappuccino, latte and espresso, how they taste, how they are made and other things to consider about them.

So, what is the difference between cappuccino, latte and espresso?

DrinkWhat it is
How it
EspressoThe mixture that
results from
pushing pressurized
water through
finely ground
slightly bitter
CappuccinoSteamed milk and
milk foam added to
It consists of
a third espresso
a third steamed milk
a third milk foam.
and with
a strong
coffee taste
LatteA lot of steamed
milk and a small
of milk
foam added to
slightly sweet
and with
a small
coffee like

The way that espresso, latte and cappuccino are made will greatly impact the way that they taste and there are a number of similarities between them. To figure out which one you like best it will be necessary for you to try each of them and to experiment with how they are made.

The differences between espresso, latte and cappuccino

Below, I will discuss how each of them are made, their differences and what has an impact on their taste.


Espresso is made by pushing hot and pressurized water through finely ground coffee. The result is a liquid that is dense in coffee that has a very intense taste that is also slightly bitter.

Since espresso is made by pushing pressurized water through coffee it is necessary to use a specially designed machine to make it. There are two types of machines that you can buy to make espresso and they are traditional espresso machines and pod-style espresso machines.

To make espresso with a traditional style espresso machine it will be necessary for you to buy the coffee beans, grind them, put them in a portafilter which is a cup for the coffee grind and then to put the portafilter into the machine and to turn it on.

The advantage of using traditional espresso machines is that they give you more control over how the espresso tastes. This is because you will have control over more of the variables that impact the taste of the espresso.

However, it can take a lot of trial and error to learn how to make an espresso that you like with the machine, it requires more time to clean it and to maintain it and it can be difficult to replicate it when you make the espresso well.

The traditional style espresso machine that I would recommend the most would be the DeLonghi Combi Coffee & Espresso Maker on Amazon. Mainly because it is easy to use and it also allows you to make coffee with it as well without sacrificing on quality.

On the other hand, to make espresso with a pod-style machine all you need to do is to add water to the machine, put the pod into the machine and to push a button.

The advantage of doing it this way is that it is much easier to do, you will be able to get it to taste the same way every time and it requires less effort on your part in getting all of the ingredients and cleaning the machine.

However, you will have less control over the way that the espresso tastes since you will only have control over the type of pod that you use. Despite that, there are many different pod flavors that you can buy so it would be unlikely that you won’t find a flavor that you like.

The pod-style espresso machine that I would recommend the most would be the Nespresso Inissia.

What impacts its taste

There are a number of factors that will have an impact on the way that espresso tastes.

If the coffee beans used are from a single origin then it will normally give the espresso a much sharper taste that can sometimes cause it to taste sour. While if a blend of coffee beans from multiple locations are used then it will normally give the espresso a more balanced taste which is why blends are more popular with espresso.

If the beans have a light roast then it will normally cause the espresso to taste slightly sourer while if the beans have a dark roast then it will cause it to taste slightly more bitter.

The freshness of the beans will also have an impact. If the beans were roasted more than three weeks ago then it will normally cause them to lose their flavor. While, if they have been roasted within the last three days then it will give it a much more bitter taste since the beans won’t have had enough time to get rid of the CO2 that gets trapped inside them when roasting.

The type of grind used will also impact the taste. If the coffee is ground too fine then it will mean that the hot water will take longer to pass through it so it will pick up more of the oil from the coffee. This will cause the espresso to taste more bitter.


Cappuccino is made by adding steamed milk and milk foam to espresso. There should be an equal amount of each in the cup so it should be a third espresso, a third steamed milk and a third milk foam.

This gives the cappuccino a hot, creamy and coffee-like taste.

Any type of milk can be used when making the cappuccino and the type used will likely have a small impact on the way that it tastes. If whole milk is used then it will give it a creamier taste while if low-fat milk is used it will give it a less creamy taste.

Below is a video on how it is made.

To make a cappuccino using a pod-style machine it will just be necessary to add a pod to the machine, make the espresso, steam the milk and to add it to the espresso.


A latte is made by adding a lot of steamed milk to espresso and a little bit of milk foam.

This gives latte a hot, very creamy taste with a hint of coffee flavor to it.

Latte and cappuccino are very similar with the difference being that latte has a lot more steamed milk added to it while cappuccino has less.

This means that latte will generally have a more creamy and less coffee-like taste. While, cappuccino will taste less creamy and more coffee-like.

Any type of milk can be used to make a latte and the type of milk used will have an effect on the way that it tastes.

Additionally, the way that the espresso is made will also impact the way that the latte tastes. There are many factors that will impact the way that the espresso tastes that are discussed in the espresso section above.

You can watch the video below to see how to make a latte.

To make the latte with a pod-style machine it is just necessary to make the espresso using a pod then to add steamed milk to it after.


Is cappuccino better than latte? Taste is subjective. Some people will find that they prefer cappuccino while others will prefer latte. If you want a stronger coffee taste then cappuccino would likely be a better option for you. If you want a creamier taste then a latte will likely be better for you.

Which is stronger cappuccino or latte? Generally, cappuccino will have a stronger taste. This is because cappuccino contains a higher concentration of espresso which will cause it to have a stronger coffee-like taste.


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