How To Make a Flat White

Sometimes buying a coffee just isn’t an option, but what if you could make your favourite coffee at home and it taste just as good? Follow our step-by-step guide to making a Flat White at home and you can do just that!  

This article includes what a Flat White consists of and its background, what you will need to make a Flat White at home, how to make it and answers to some frequently asked questions.

I - About The Flat White

II - What You Will Need

III - Step-By-Step Guide

IV - FAQ's

About the Flat White 

The Flat White coffee gained its popularity relatively recently compared to other coffees and has started to become a fan favourite in recent years. The coffee consists of a single or double shot of espresso and these espresso shots are restricted, to increase the strength. A flat white also contains steamed milk infused with air, unlike a cappuccino, only a small amount of aeration is used to produce what is called a ‘microfoam’. Pouring the special milk is vital to a good flat white, but when done correctly it produces a creamy taste and a very smooth texture. When considering ratios, a flat white is 1/3 espresso, 2/3 milk.

Stokes Flat White Coffee
Both Australia and New Zealand claim the invention of the flat white, with it first being produced in the 1980’s. It is said that coffee drinkers were dissatisfied with drinking cappuccinos all of the time and craved an espresso with less foam; so, the flat white was created. The drink was then adopted by the coffee market, as it produces a great way of showcasing speciality coffee, since the textured milk doesn’t over-power the espresso.

What You Will Need to Make a Flat White


-18g of coffee beans or coffee ground for espresso. We recommend using our Stokes Flirt Blend for a Flat White. 

-100ml of milk. 


-A coffee grinder (if you are using coffee beans).  

-A coffee machine with a steam wand/arm. 

-A jug to froth your milk in.  

-Ceramic coffee cup – 150-200ml capacity 

-A thermometer  

If you don’t have all of the things you need, you can shop for coffee equipment on our online shop.  

Step-By-Step Guide to Making a Flat White

Step 1 – Grind your coffee beans (18g) to a fine consistency and ensure a level tamp.  

Step 2 –With your jug of milk, foam up the milk by adding hot steam from your wand at a high pressure. You want to create tiny bubbles in the milk by having your nozzle just under the milk surface and swirling it around the jug.  

Step 3 – Let the milk sit and brew your espresso from your ground beans.  

Step 4 - Pour the textured milk carefully into the espresso, start with the jug far away from the cup and then draw it in closer to create more detail on the top of the coffee. 


What’s the difference between a flat white and a cappuccino? 

The main difference is the ratio of milk to espresso. A cappuccino is ½ milk, ½ coffee. Whereas a flat white is 1/3 espresso, 2/3 milk. The espresso strength of a flat white depends on whether it is made with a single or double espresso, but a flat white usually tastes stronger than a cappuccino because there is less milk used.  

Why can a flat white vary between coffee shops?  

The size of a flat white can vary from coffee shop to coffee shop and this is usually because some barista’s make it with a single espresso and others with a double.  

What’s a skinny flat white?  

A skinny flat which is just a normal flat white coffee, but made with skimmed milk, rather than whole milk.  

I’m not sure where to start when it comes to making coffee at home.  

We understand there’s a lot to take in when it comes to making coffee at home, especially using a coffee machine. We recommend taking our Home Barista Experience, where you can learn to get the best out of your home machine. 

You might also be interested in these:

- How To Make Coffee At Home

- How Do Coffee Beans Grow?

- How Coffee is Decaffeinated