What Is Cafe Misto?

Many people have come up with diverse ways to prepare their coffee. One common way of brewing is by adding some milk to the coffee once it has been brewed, and the resulting beverage is popularly known as cafe misto. So, what is cafe misto? 

What is Cafe Misto?

Cafe Misto is simply a mix of freshly brewed coffee and steamed frothed milk in an equal ratio. The coffee is usually brewed using a French press or drip-brew method and the main ingredients, which are coffee and warm milk, are blended in a 1:1 ratio to achieve the desired balance. 

An image of two coffee cups

How to Make a Cafe Misto

There are a great many things about this brew that draws people to prepare and drink it. Apart from the delightful and creamy taste it offers, this type of coffee does not require any special technique or equipment to prepare. 

All you need is your coffee grounds, a regular coffee maker, a milk frother, and a stove or microwave, and you can be on your way to preparing what could very well be your favorite coffee type.

  1. The first step in preparing this beverage is brewing the coffee. You can make use of any coffee beans of choice, whether it is a dark, medium, or light roast. You can also make use of any method of brewing such as the French press, drip coffee, or pour-over. However, for a stronger and bolder taste, I recommend using a French press rather than a pour-over or a drip coffee maker.
  2. While brewing your coffee, begin steaming the milk. The milk may be heated over a stove or put in the microwave for about 30 seconds. It does not have to be steaming hot, a relatively warm temperature would do.
  3. Add the warm milk to the French press and pulse the plunger a couple of times to froth the milk.
  4. Once the coffee is properly brewed, pour the coffee into a cup, filling it up halfway. Fill up the rest of the cup with your steamed milk, ensuring that the coffee-milk ratio is strictly 1:1.

How Much Caffeine Is in Cafe Misto?

The caffeine quantity in a cup of misto may differ depending on the type of coffee beans used as well as the brewing technique used to prepare the coffee. On average, an 8-ounce cup of this beverage contains between 32.5 mg and 60 mg of caffeine.

A 12-ounce cup of this brew also contains approximately 86 and 115 mg of caffeine, while a 16-ounce cup of the beverage contains around 150 mg of caffeine.

The calorie content in a cup of this brew also differs depending on the type of coffee beans and milk used. However, in one typical 12-ounce serving of this beverage, the calorie content is approximately 100.

What is the Difference Between a Cafe Misto and a Latte?

Although they are both coffee with milk, a latte varies significantly from a misto. While the latter can be made by slowly brewing any type of coffee grounds, the former can only be made by brewing espresso grounds under pressure, making use of an espresso machine for anywhere between 25 and 30 seconds.

This method of preparation gives the latte its signature intense flavor. Additionally, while the misto does not have a third layer of whipped milk, the latte has a third foamy layer of milk that gives it a more frothy texture.

An image of a coffee in a cafe

Are Cafe Misto and Cafe au Lait the Same?

No, cafe misto and cafe au lait are not the same. Frequently, individuals may use the terms interchangeably, however, these terms describe two different methods of preparing coffee with milk. The distinct difference in the brewing process is what makes the distinction.

When making a cafe au lait, warm milk that is not frothed is added to the coffee. This makes the coffee have a less creamy taste. The cafe misto, on the other hand, is made using warm milk that has been frothed. This gives the coffee a creamier and sweeter taste.

Furthermore, while the misto follows a strict 1:1 ratio, the coffee-milk ratio in preparing a cafe au lait may vary depending on individual preference. 

Related Questions

Can I Add Other Ingredients to Cafe Misto?

Yes, you can add other ingredients to a cup of cafe misto. The original recipe only contains coffee and milk, however, to spice up the taste, you can add any flavored syrup and toppings of your choosing


The cafe misto is an easy and affordable method of preparing coffee with milk. It is often mistaken for a cafe au lait or a latte, however, its method of preparation strictly follows a coffee-milk ratio of 1:1, giving it its distinctly strong taste.