Best Latte Machine: Top 6 Home Espresso Makers For Lattes
Did you know that Americans order over 70 million lattes per year? In fact, according to Square and the Specialty Coffee Association, it is the most ordered type of specialty coffee drinks within most coffee shops. That's a whole latte love for the Italian style espresso and steamed milk masterpiece that we have grown to love and enjoy!
While not every espresso machine has the ability to make lattes, the ones on this list do! So what is the best latte machine that we recommend so more people can have one of these in the comfort of their own homes?
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Best Latte Machine
Since not everyone has the luxury or financial freedom to go down to a local coffee shop to pick up a latte, you may be wondering how you can make a latte at home. Even if you are the type that buys a latte everyday, perhaps you are looking to save a few dollars by making your own latte at home with a latte machine.
Well, you are in luck. We have gone ahead and reviewed the best latte machines that you can buy today for your home. No more waiting in lines, no more grumpy baristas and no more wasting money! It's time to take matters into your own hands by crafting your own lattes at home with one of these 5 best latte machines we have reviewed for you.
Best Overall Choice
Coming in at number one is the clear winner and our favorite home latte machine, this Breville semi automatic machine is hands down the best on our list and for good reason. In fact, this budget friendly option ranked amongst some of the well known behemoths in our best espresso machine guide where we ranked the best overall options available. Not bad considering some of it's competitors were priced at more than double what the Infuser costs.
Starting with the aesthetics, this super automatic Breville features a stainless steel finish with all the bells and whistles needed to produce a quality latte. If the silver stainless steel look isn't your thing, you'll be happy to know there are multiple color options for this model. Putting one of these in your kitchen will make you feel like you're at your favorite coffee shop.
This one touch semi automatic espresso maker uses a proprietary pre infusion technique that applies just a little bit of water at the start of the extraction which helps expand the coffee grounds. Then, using perfectly temperature controlled water (thanks to the auto purge feature), the Breville forces hot water through the coffee. In doing so, you are left with a perfect shot, or two, of espresso.
If you are on the hunt for a machine that can make a delicious latte, then you'll be happy to know that the Infuser comes with a steam wand for producing that much needed foamy milk. This paired with a milk jug, and a milk frother for practicing your latte art, and you'll be well on your way to a becoming the barista you were destined to become.
Last, even though we are on the hunt for the best latte machines, you'll be happy that the Infuser can make other drink options as well. With the ability to pull one or two shots of espresso, you'll be able to recreate your favorite café classics in the comfort of your own home. If you want to start saving money and enjoy better coffee, do yourself a favor and pick up one of these latte machines!
Although we love this machine, it looks like it may be missing out on one key component, and that is the built in grinder. If you already have a grinder and are sure that it can grind coffee fine enough for espresso shots, then no need for one. Since these machines can pull an exceptional shot of espresso, there is no need to upgrade.
However, if you do not have a grinder, or are unsure whether your grinder is good enough, then we recommend upgrading to the Infuser's big brother, the Breville Barista, which was rated number one on our top 10 Best espresso machines. For only a couple hundred dollars more, which is what you'd spend on a good grinder, you'll have a machine capable of multiple brewing options, faster brewing and a high quality burr grinder to automate your mornings for you.
The Mr. Coffee Semi Automatic Machine is ideal for diversifying your coffee interests and experimenting with different beans and forms of coffee. If you're working on a budget, you may want to check out the Mr. Coffee. It is a 19-bar latte machine giving it an added bit of pressure. This pressure is put to good use filtering the water through the coffee grounds.
The Mr. Coffee One-Touch has a stainless steel finish and is relatively small in comparison to most other latte machines on the market. The petite size of the machine makes it ideal for places with limited kitchen counter space or smaller kitchens overall. You won't have to worry about rearranging your entire kitchen to fit this little guy right in.
Like all latte machines, it features a milk frother, which allows for the consumer to create latte milk that is light and creamy. A unique feature of this machine is that it features a milk reservoir with a swivel action steam wand.
The milk is automatically dispensed from the reservoir and through the steam wand. The idea behind this design is to create perfectly steamed milk at the touch of a button. The milk reservoir is reported as easily removable for fridge storage and can be cleaned easily, so no need to worry about spoiled milk.
Another great feature of this beginner machine is that it can pull single and double shots of espresso at the push of a button. Overall, we'd say the Mr. Coffee latte machine is relatively easy to use. The bottom line is that this super automatic appliance will suite your latte needs.
Some consumers report this latte machine as not being easy to clean. There are reviews stating that milk tends to remain in the line between the steam wand and the milk reservoir, resulting in spoiled milk. Other reports on this budget friendly machine claim inconsistent water amounts and temperatures. The inconsistency results in poorly extracted espresso, which produces an overall weak shot.
Additionally, this latte machine doesn't come with a built in grinder, so you'll need to purchase one capable of grinding for lattes. We feel that in order to produce a good latte or cappuccino, proper pulling of the shot of espresso is essential, and although this is a great secondary option, it just doesn't quite meet our expectations of a great shot. Still, at such a low price tag, it's hard to beat!
The next latte machine we have for you is the EspressoWorks, which is a brilliant semi automatic latte machine. With the ability to make one or two shots, what more do you need? If you would like to keep your counter space free of clutter with this all-in-one espresso machine, then you should seriously consider doing so.
The Espresso Works machine gets to work fast and won't let you down. Simply add your favorite ground coffee into the chamber, and the advanced thermoblock heating system will calculate the precise temperature to set the water at. If you have worked within the coffee industry then you will know the importance of water temperature.
The next feature of the EspressoWorks latte machine is the built in steamer which is an essential for providing instant foamy milk for your lattes, and it features a grinder as an added perk. Despite whether or not it is a burr grinder, it is nice to finally see a grinder in our reviews. More importantly, most of the components on these espresso machines are removable, which helps when it comes time to clean everything.
The EspressoWorks machine also features a clear view removable water tank. The tank allows you to see how much water you have available and makes it easy to fill and clean. With its 1.25L capacity, you'll never run out again! It also comes with a customer care warranty for one year, giving you peace of mind that what you're buying is a quality product that won't instantly break.
If you haven't noticed by now, none of these machines come with a built in grinder, but the EsspressoWorks does! However, it is not a burr grinder and the grind particle sizes are extremely inconsistent. If you need a machine that has the total package and can automate your morning, you'll need to upgrade your machines to some of the higher end hardware we mentioned in our best overall espresso maker article.
As for the espresso shots, they get the job done but the quality is lacking, especially according to the reviews. If you are trying to recreate an equivalent shot of espresso, to that of one from your favorite cafe, you are going to notice a difference. Not only in the lack of crema, but the overall taste as well as well, not to mention the time it takes compared to some of the other Breville models.
There are loads of places in the city to go and meet friends for a coffee, but sometimes it's nice to invite them to your home, saving money, and to escape the hustle and bustle of the coffee shop. The De'Longhi Espresso Maker is one of the more versatile machines that you will be excited to show off to your friends, and they will be equally pleased with their decision to come over.
This machine features a 15-bar pressure system to help create the perfect espresso with a rich aroma and a frothy nut colored finish. For just a few more dollars, you can upgrade the package and receive a milk frothing jug if you wish to work on your latte art. Not to mention the ability to produce a latte that is similar to some of the automatic machines.
Also, if you're shopping for latte machines, but also enjoy a typical cup of Joe, you'll be happy to know this machine features a ten cup drip coffee pot. This size of the coffee maker will appeal to coffee lovers, and may provide convenience for those hosting larger groups of guests as it fields a large capacity water reservoir.
The bottom line here is that this super automatic coffee maker will also serve as a solid cappuccino machine. As long as you are buying fresh ground coffee, you will be pleased with the performance of the De'Longhi.
One downside to this machine is the aesthetics. This machine is bulky in comparison to the other machines in this buying guide. Sure, you can brew a whole pot, enjoy and espresso and cappuccino, but not without costing yourself some serious kitchen counter real estate. On top of the size, overall it doesn't give the latte maker vibe. To us, it gives off more of the office or construction site coffee makers type of look.
Although we love the dual functionality of this machine, it lacks in quality as it tries to do too much at once. Can it make a pot of coffee? Yes. Can it make a latte? Yes. Does it do either of these well? Not really. Also, many consumers report that the longevity of the De'Longhi is poor. Some reviews state that the machine stopped working in as little as one dozen uses. Others state this coffee maker lasted them less than a year before needing to be replaced.
However, it is important to note that it does not come with a grinder, so you'll still need one of those if you want to produce quality shots of espresso for your latte. In our opinions, it would make more sense to buy a 4 cup coffee maker and a high quality compact latte maker, like the Mr. Coffee One-Touch listed above. Combined, it'll only run you a few more dollars but the performance will be better.
In a busy home office, when you're snowed under with work, you need a coffee machine that's efficient and does what it's supposed to do. There's nothing worse than having to make do with an awful coffee on your only break away from the computer screen. The Barsetto is one product that won't let you down as it is one of the best espresso machines you'll find on this list.
The Barsetto Espresso Machine is an 8-12 bar coffee machine, giving it the optimal pressure to produce excellent shots at just a fraction of the price. This can then be used to make lattes, or other specialty drinks such as a flat white, cappuccino or even a breve!
This semi automatic latte machine also has a patented water heater that regulates the water temperatures, ensuring that water stays at the optimal temperature during the extraction process. This is cutting edge technology you won't find in most cheaper alternatives, and at this price tag, it's quite an added feature!
The Barsetto Latte Machine is also easy to maintain and clean, a rarity amongst most automatic machines. The 1.5L removable water tank is ideal for cleaning but also for checking the water level in the tank and monitoring your coffee. It also makes descaling much easier.
For such a great price, you weren't really expecting there not to be some negative feedback were you? Starting with the obvious, the Barsetto super automatic espresso machine is missing a grinder. Without a proper grinder, you'll never be able to pull a good shot.
So, if you can't afford one of the higher end latte makers, you'll need to shop around for grinders. To make matters more difficult, the machine is known to leak when using too fine of an espresso grind. Well, that is certainly frustrating since you first need to shop for an espresso quality grinder, but then you may learn that your grinder is just too good, causing a leakage.
In our opinion, that statement basically proves that the Barsetta isn't capable of a high pressured shot, which means there won't be that sweet and creamy crema most of you are hoping to achieve. Additionally, some of the reviews point out a quality assurance issue with many defective latte machines, some of which arriving dead, while others simply fail within the first year.
When Keurigs first came out, people bought them for their novelty, but also for the convenience. We'll admit, it's a lot easier to pop those K-Cup coffee pods into a machine than it is to hand grind fresh beans, boil water to the perfect temperature and brew your coffee using a pour over method. The Keurig K-Cafe Coffee Maker is capable of brewing up a variety of coffee drinks, including a latte.
Whether you drink a lot of coffee on your own or you have a large family to cater to, the K-Cafe has the capacity to make your life easier by providing enough coffee features to go around. Featuring a 60oz, large capacity water reservoir, this latte machine allows you to brew up to 6 cups before you need to refill it. This means you can drink cup after cup of delicious coffee or make a round of drinks for a room full of people.
The K-Cafe is also a modern coffee maker with a simple one touch design, yet it packs a powerful punch full of diversity thanks to it's milk frother attachment. Whether you want normal drip coffee from a k cup pod, an iced coffee poured over ice, or a latte, the K-Cafe can do it all. Since it is such a compact device, it is also easy to clean as well.
Lastly, this dual latte machine can save you time with its Smart Start setting and it can save you money on your home energy bills with programmable energy efficiency. If you are the type that prefers simplicity and using coffee pods, yet you want to be able to make your own latte, you should consider this latte machine for it's ease of use.
Unlike many of the other latte machines featured in our reviews, the K-Cafe does not feature a steam wand. Instead, it comes with a dishwasher safe milk frother cup. In our experience, this type of milk frother doesn't get the job done in the same way as the steam wands. The milk doesn't seem to become as light and creamy as it does when using a steam wand like on a typical latte machine.
Due to the design of the K-Cafe and being built like the classic Keurig machines, it simply doesn't have the mechanisms to truly pull a shot of espresso. The design limits the consumer in the variety of drinks they can create. The bottom line is although it's an easy to work machine and it beats spending $5 on a hot drink everyday, you may not get the same results as some of the other latte machines featured in this article.
What is a Latte?
One of the most popular coffee drinks, both in coffee shops, and at home, is the classic Cafè Latte. The Cafe Latte emerged in the 1980s, but in reality, it's much older than that. It was first developed in Italy, where it has been common for generations to drink a milky coffee for breakfast. Those original lattes were not so different from the ones we drink now, but there have been some minor adjustments made to them.
A latte differs from its counterparts in several small but significant ways. At it's core, a latte is a specialty coffee drink that consists of one, or two, shots of espresso, with a thick body of steamed milk that gives it a creamy and sweet taste. Even though a latte may taste like it is stronger than a cup of coffee, it actually contains less caffeine according to our latte vs coffee review, and is not as strong when considering its total dissolved solids (DTS).
How to Make a Latte
A latte is an excellent coffee beverage to know how to make. Although we have personally graduated to a slightly stronger alternative, the latte is a great place to start. If you want to know more about the stronger alternative, be sure to check out our macchiato vs latte review.
With a perfect blend of milk and espresso, you are left with a rich and creamy specialty beverage that can be either hot or iced. The process of making a nice latte is fairly simple, but it may take some practice to perfect, especially the milk foaming stage.
- To make a Latte, you first need to prepare an espresso shot, or two, using an espresso machine. Although there are some stovetop espresso makers, and some Aeropress hacks, you'll want to use something that will produce a proper shot of espresso.
- Next, after you pull the shot(s), put the coffee into a heated Latte glass. Then, fill your milk jug and place the steamer wand into the jug. You can use any type of milk you want, but we prefer whole milk.
- Steam the milk and froth it up, then add it to the espresso within the glass. If you stir your foam while frothing, you should be able to create a nice microfoam. If you want to make latte art, be sure leave enough room at the top of the glass.
How to Make Latte at Home
To make the perfect latte at home, you will need some freshly brewed espresso, steamed milk or milk foam, and a choice of syrup if required. The syrup is more so for something like a mocha latte, which we go more in depth about in our breakdown of the latte vs mocha espresso drinks.
One of the most important aspects of a latte is the espresso shot, so make sure you have the best beans for the job. We are sort of biased in this regard and feel that the espresso blend sold by us is superior to all!
- If you already have an espresso machine, then you can skip down to the next step. However, if you don't have an espresso maker, you'll need to create a gimmick. Although this won't be a true latte, it'll still taste great. For this espresso shot hack, simply make the strongest coffee concentrate you can afford, use a Moka pot, or try the double filter Aeropress technique.
- There are several ways to froth your milk for a latte. The best way is to use an espresso machine with a frother wand; most good latte machines will have this as a standard feature. If you don't have this luxury, the other way is to use a handheld milk frother, or even with a whisk or immersion blender.
- The final stage is to pour the frothy milk into the espresso glass. You will see the white milk turn coffee brown as the two liquids form the perfect latte. Once mixed, spoon some froth from the jar on top to finish. This process is made much easier with one of the super automatic latte machines, but it is definitely doable at home without one.
Joy Jolt features the best option here with an 11.5 oz. glass latte cup that is both practical and durable. With double wall insulation and a handle, you won't worry about burning your hand!
De'Longhi offers multiple specialty coffee glasses with their latte, espresso and cappuccino versions. The latte glasses hold 7.5 oz. and are wonderful to pair with those semi automatic espresso machines.
ComSaf offers a similar design to that of the De'Longhi ones previously mentioned but you can choose from an 8.5 oz. or 12 oz. capacity, and each comes in a set of four or six glasses.
Bottom Line: Best Latte Machines?
The bottom line here is that you should buy one of these semi automatic latte makers. Not only will it make your mornings that much better, but it'll save you a lot of money if you are someone that is prone to spontaneous cravings and often find yourself waiting in line for that pumpkin spice latte.
Do yourself a favor and upgrade to a super automatic appliance that can pull shots of espresso. However, if you find these out of your budget, go ahead and check out our review on the best espresso machines for under $200.
In our opinion, the only option you have for an espresso machine is the semi automatic Breville Infuser as it does an amazing job. With an included steam wand, capable of producing a latte and cappuccino, and easy to use, it's the only option that makes sense. The stainless steel finish will also look the part on your counter as your friends come over to see your Barista skills.