How to Brew

Spanish Cafe Con Leche Recipe

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Ever wondered how java lovers around the world enjoy a cup of coffee? Though we all tend to rely on the same kinds of roasted coffee beans to make a morning cup, the way we brew the ground beans differs depending on where you find yourself. 

In Vietnam, for example, a drink called ca phe trung — made with strong coffee, egg yolk foam, and sweetened condensed milk — is often enjoyed. The Australian flat white consists of a double shot of espresso and four ounces of frothy milk. And in some Spanish countries, the café con leche is a popular morning coffee drink…and we’re going to tell you how to make it!


The name “café con leche” literally translates to coffee with milk, and that’s precisely what it is. Though it’s unknown exactly when or by who, the creamy coffee drink is said to have originated in Spain before eventually making its way to other countries across the globe, with the Cuban version becoming one of the most famous variations of the drink. 

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Even though both coffee drinks consist of coffee and steamed milk, a few key differences separate the two, the first of which is the origin. A latte is traditionally Italian, while the café con leche is generally consumed in Spanish-speaking countries. 

Another distinction lies in the amount of milk used in each coffee recipe. While lattes use a 1:2 coffee-to-milk ratio, the Spanish café con leche is made with a 1:1 ratio. And usually, there isn’t any milk foam on top of the café con leche.


Cafe Con Leche Recipe


  • 1 shot of espresso
  • 2/3 cup of milk
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (optional)
  • Saucepan


Step 1:

Milk In A Saucepan

Pour milk into a saucepan, and let it steam over medium heat until it becomes frothy. Traditionally, whole milk is used, but feel free to make necessary substitutions if dairy isn’t an option for you. 

Step 2:

Shot Espresso

Then, use your espresso maker to brew a shot of the dark and strong coffee. Using pre-ground beans with your brewer is fine, but if you use whole beans and a burr coffee grinder, the fresh coffee grounds will create a brew that’s quite flavorful. Pour your hot coffee into a mug or glass.

Step 3:

Milk In Cafe Con Leche

If you want to add sweetener, now is the time! Spoon a bit of granulated sugar into the freshly-brewed espresso shot and stir until it’s dissolved into the brew. If you’d prefer to enjoy this beverage sugar-free, however, go ahead and skip to the next step.

Step 4:

Finally, you need to pour the hot milk over the espresso coffee, and you’re all done!


Making this bold coffee drink is a piece of cake, so long as you’ve got an espresso machine (a stovetop espresso maker works as well), freshly ground coffee beans, and a means of producing hot milk. A cup of café con leche makes the perfect breakfast espresso drink, and because the coffee beverage’s ingredients are so basic, it’s sure to appeal to many a coffee drinker. 

Happy Caffeinating!

Spanish Cafe Con Leche Recipe

Spanish Cafe Con Leche

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

If you've ever wondered what a good cup of Spanish coffee tastes like, this café con leche recipe is for you. It's easy to make and easier to enjoy, so it's the perfect way for you to kick off your day!


  • 1 shot of espresso
  • 2 teaspoons sugar (optional)
  • ⅔ cup of milk


    1. Steam milk in a saucepan until frothy. 
    2. Combine espresso and sugar and stir until sugar is dissolved.
    3. Pour milk over espresso and enjoy!
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