Latte vs Mocha: Exploring the Key Differences Between Two Classic Coffee Drinks

Latte vs Mocha: Exploring the Key Differences Between Two Classic Coffee Drinks


When it comes to coffee, your options are endless. You can get latte, mocha, americano, espresso, or countless other variations of coffee drinks and they’re all delicious! However, one of the most common questions coffee-lovers ask themselves is what’s the difference between mocha and latte? Are you confused about this question too? Read on to find out the difference between these two coffee drinks.

The Primary Difference Between Latte and Mocha

The primary difference between a latte and a mocha is the presence of chocolate in mochas. A latte is made with espresso and steamed milk, while a mocha is made with espresso, steamed milk, and chocolate (usually in the form of syrup or powder).

Before directly going into the differences, let us first check a brief overview about latte and mocha.

What is Mocha?

Mocha is an intensely flavored coffee blend, it originated in Ethiopia and was brought from Yemen by traders all over Europe. It is made up of two simple ingredients which are espresso and milk. These two ingredients together create a rich flavor. People often enjoy mocha with a tinge of chocolate, cinnamon, caramel, earthy spices, nutmeg and often fruity flavors such as orange, blueberry and raspberry too!

Mocha can be served hot as well as cold. However, remember to be a little careful with it only if you are sensitive to sugar. As far as the taste goes some people obsess over its rich flavor while some find it a little sweet. There are plenty of variations of mocha. For example, the white mocha which adds the addition of white chocolate, hot chocolate and dark chocolate.

Mocha Vs latte

Mocha is widely liked by people primarily because of the huge scope of experimentation it offers, people love to create new delicacies using it. It is used in making espresso, cappuccino, iced coffee, cheesecakes, cookies and many more things.

Mocha is one of the most popular types of blends for people who love to drink various flavoured beverages. Due to its strong aroma, it is also often used in baking as well as cooking, if anyone wants to add sweetness and intensity, mocha can do the job perfectly! It gives a unique depth of flavour and enhances your culinary experience.

What is Latte?

Latte (also known as caffè latte) is a coffee drink made with espresso and steamed milk, it is one of the most popular espresso-based drinks.

It usually contains a one-sixth portion of espresso, a fourth-sixth portion of steamed milk, and the rest one-sixth portion of foamed milk.

The amount of milk dominates in this drink hence one can define caffè latte as a milky drink with a slight touch of coffee.

People add a layer of foamed milk on top of the brew and many times additional flavours and syrups as per their liking.

Mocha Vs latte

People often refer to the pouring technique of steamed milk as an art, one needs a good amount of experience to make the magic happen.

This technique of pouring milk is essential so that the espresso base can mix evenly too.

Due to time and expertise constraints that people face today, they have reverted to automatic latte machines so that they can sit back, let the magic happen and devour into the goodness.

Read About: What is Red Eye Coffee?

How to Get the Espresso Shot Ready at Home?

Making the perfect shot of espresso is all about pressure, with espresso you can either make it or break it.

The trick lies in the technique with which it is prepared. There are many ways you can prepare perfect shots of espresso at home without any fancy equipment!

Here are all the methods you can follow:

1. The Aeropress

This method impressively matches the machine espresso, the texture of espresso might vary but the taste and flavour remain the same. The first step you need to follow is:

  1. Stack your Aeropress, then place the filter inside the cap used for draining, then lightly rinse the filter and along with that place the drain cap and then place the press on a mug.
  2. Now take 2 tablespoons of it and add nearly 3-4 ounces of water heated at 200 degrees, stir with coffee and press down the plunger and voila you are good to go! Read More
difference between latte and mocha mocha vs latte

2. The Moka Pot

The taste assured in this method is a little different from the original taste of espresso but it is as good as the original one! The Moka pot is also known as the utility knife of coffee brewing. The first step is to:

  1. Take two tablespoons of coffee and then pour 4 ounces of water into the bottom of the pot and then pour the coffee into its built-in filter and then shake it.
  2. The grounds will settle and then you can screw the Moka pot tightly and place it on the burner keeping the flame medium-high.
  3. Now all you have to do is to wait for the Moka pot to do its magic! The coffee will expand and foam in the upper level of the Moka pot.
  4. Your coffee is now ready, sit back and enjoy this beauty! Read More
difference between latte and mocha

3. The French press

It prepared the perfectly concentrated brew. The first step that you need to follow is to grind coffee on, you will need more coffee than usual to achieve the desired richness in the brew along with the desired froth!

  1. You need to heat one cup of water and add the coffee founds in the French press.
  2. Now you need to add a splash of water of hot water so that the coffee releases its flavour.
  3. You need to soak the grounds for about 30-40 seconds. Now close the lid and let the coffee steep for near about 4 minutes.
  4. Now press the plunger downpour the content into your favourite mug and dive into the heavenly taste of freshly brewed coffee! Read More

Now that perfect shots of espresso is ready! It is time to make some drinks out of it! 

How to Make a Mocha at Home?

Making mocha at home is easy, you need some basic ingredients to prepare it, which include milk, espresso and any flavour or syrup of your choice.

  1. Take a cup and start adding the chocolate, flavour or any syrup of your choice to the cup.
  2. Whether you use ganache or chocolate syrup, it must fill up to one-fourth portion of the cup.
  3. Now the next step is to add more than one-fourth portion of espresso to the mug and continue to mix it.
  4. Now fill up the rest half of the cup with one-fourth portion of steamed milk and one-fourth portion of frothed milk.
  5. Now give it a gentle mix and your homemade Mocha is ready! One can always add more sugar or flavouring as per his/her taste! This is how you make an easy and perfect mocha at home!

If you want to Make Mocha Coffee at Home Without Machine? then click here for detailed guidance.

How to Make Latte at Home?

Making a latte at home is as easy as making mocha at home only if you know the correct technique. The ingredients include milk, espresso and cocoa powder.

 Although the ideal ratio is 1:1:1, lattes are preferable to having more milk than espresso. So, to prepare a perfect latte, the first step that you need to follow is:

  1. Take a large ceramic cup or latte cup and then put an espresso shot into it. If you prefer a strong one, then you can also put double espresso shots.
  2. Next, you need to prepare steamed milk by boiling it on the burner on medium flame then and pouring it into the cup till it is nearly full.
  3. After that, you need to fill the remaining portion of the cup with a layer of milk foam.
  4. Then slightly tilt the cup to gently mix the milk with the espresso. You can garnish your drink with cocoa powder on top.

Nowadays, some experts also use to craft several designs on the top of the milk foam which is known as latte art.

If you have an eye for art you can try it otherwise the cocoa powder garnish works well too.

If you are a mocha coffee lover and want to know this dressing process? Then click here for detailed guidance.

Now that we have had a detailed discussion about Lattes and Mochas and their history, their origin, basically everything about them, we will again head back to where we started our journey from.

Flashbacks About Latte VS Mocha

The Mocha Coffee Origin:

The word “mocha” was derived from the name of a city in Yemen, it was a coastal city, the city was called “Al Moka“.

The city was situated along the Red Sea, it was a major port for coffee trading from the 15th to 18th centuries.

It is interesting to know that the city was itself named after the Moka beans that were grown there.

These moka or mocha beans were grown and harvested in the mountain regions of central Yemen.

After being picked the mocha beans were transported all over Europe. These beans are now called Arabica coffee beans. Types of Coffee Bean

difference between latte and mocha

It is also interesting to note that there is a history of Mocha in the United States too.

The cafe mocha that we are familiar with today was first originated in the United States of America.

It was inspired by a beverage from Turin, Italy called “bicerin”. Bicerin was made out of espresso, milk, whipped cream, chocolate and cocoa, the only difference between mocha and bicerin was in the way that they were served.

Bicerin was served deconstructed, which means that the ingredients were layered in the glass and the drinker mixed it.

Mocha beans in ancient time was a very popular choice among people, people enjoyed it because of the undertones of chocolate flavour it had.

The Latte Coffee Origin:

Now to carry forward our debate we again move on to the historical aspect of our discussion, but this time we talk about the latte.

Latte when compared to mocha, has more recent roots in history. The term “caffè latte” was first presented by William Howells in 1867 in his essay called “Italian Journeys”.

At this point, coffee has started becoming a worldwide sensation, but brewing methods were still very primitive.

difference between latte and mocha

One of the main reasons that latte has more recent roots in history was because of the technique by which it was made.

Steams wands and espresso machines were introduced nearly around 1903, but they were used just to create texture in the milk.

Nearly around 1980, Baristas present in Seattle had started creating art on top of drinks.

It spread like a wildfire and it became a common practice. Latte has evolved over the years but the basic ingredients like coffee and milk remain unchanged. 

Both the drinks have contrasting history, technique and taste, but two things that remain common are the milk and the espresso. We will talk about both of them in depth.

 Milk is an ingredient that is used both in Latte and Mocha. Milk alone holds the potential and power to make a significant impact on the quality of coffee.

It possesses the ability to create a perfectly stable foam that makers and customers enjoy alike.

Milk foam creation is not as it looks or sounds, one needs to be extremely careful about harmonising milk fats and proteins.

Milk plays an important role in Latte and Mocha too, let us have a look at it.

Which Milk Do You Need to Prepare Latte and Mocha?

In this aspect, there is not much difference between latte and mocha as both the drinks require steamed and frothed milk.

Steamed milk is obtained when we heat milk with a steaming wand, it is less bubbly creamier and smoother, it also evenly silky.

It is also called microfoam because of the presence of tiny bubbles which are formed while we aerate the milk.

Since this foam is heavier and more reflective, it is ideal for latte art. On the other hand, frothed milk is obtained when we seal and shake any jar or vessel.

Frothed milk is comparatively easier to make and has more bubbly and airy foam. 

The easiest way to prepare steamed or frothed milk is with the help of the steam wand present in the espresso machine.

Even if someone does not have an espresso machine at home, one can always buy a milk frothing device with which they can incorporate air bubbles and also heat them.

Whisking milk also helps if one does not have any of the above-mentioned devices. Steamed milk and frothed milk are very different from one another. (Click here to know about them in-depth)

Frothed milk contains air bubbles, unlike steamed milk. So, the main point of difference between steamed and frothed milk lies in the number of air bubbles.

Preparing frothed milk is much easier than steamed milk at home. The addition of frothed milk to any beverage can enhance their taste and flavour of them.

We now have a considerable amount of knowledge about milk and its importance. We will now move on to the second crucial ingredient which is, espresso.

Which is more sweeter latte or mocha?

Latte and Mocha both coffees have a little milky taste in addition to sugary. However, mocha contains some highly sugary ingredients like cocoa chocolate.

Whereas, latte does not have such a high amount of sugar as it is primarily based on milky, so it tastes like milk.

In short, mocha is sweeter than latte as it contains chocolate.

Which is stronger latte or mocha?

The coffee beans of mocha are from the family coffee arabica that contains a natural cocoa flavor on top of that chocolate is always added to this coffee and that’s why it is called mocha.

But latte is just a milky drink that is too light and even contains so much low amount of caffeine compared to mocha. So yeah, mocha is much stronger than a latte.

difference between latte and mocha

What is an Espresso?

Espresso is a type of strong black coffee that is prepared by forcing steam through ground coffee beans.

It is a method of brewing coffee that has Italian origin. It can be made with a variety of coffee beans and roast degrees.

It is very popular in parts of Italy, France, Spain, Switzerland and Portugal. The actual caffeine content in any coffee drink depends upon the size, beans and roast method.

difference between latte and mocha

Espresso has more caffeine per unit volume than many other coffee drinks, but it is compensated due to the small serving size.

Dictionaries mention that espresso means “pressed-out” however, historians have stated that it has French and Italian traces to it and it conveys the meaning of expressing quickly.

Espresso, however, is both a brewing method and a beverage. Any kind of bean or any level of roasting can be used to produce fine and authentic espresso. 

It is a masterpiece that has a rich and delicious flavour to it. The traditional way of preparing this drink is to prepare it without any milk and it is meant to be taken quickly, like a shot in one breath.

Thanks to its ground coffee ratio and extraction time it has an intense flavour and aroma.

Typically, espresso has a thicker consistency than a regular brew, and this type of espresso has become the foundation of many flavours of beverages.

Espresso is often used as a base for other coffee drinks, including our very own Latte and Mocha. However, the amount of espresso varies in each drink.

Espresso has high caffeine content due to which people assume it to be very bitter, if it is made with good quality beans and proper technique it is not more bitter than black coffee.

While espresso is exceptionally delicious and rich, its taste will still depend on the roast degree, the grind quality, and the technique and machine used to brew it.

If someone has the right equipment and proper knowledge about various other factors like grind consistency, the temperature of extraction, time and ratio of coffee and water, they can prepare fine espresso on their own too.

Also Read: Difference Between Coffee and Espresso

Latte vs Mocha – Which to choose?

As we went into the depths of this discussion, we came across many interesting facts and figures about our debate, we encountered striking differences as well as similarities.

Both Mocha and Latte are espresso-based drinks that contain espresso and steamed milk.

The ingredients and ratio are different in these two types of drinks. However, the significant difference between mocha and latte lies in the fact that mocha coffee involves the addition of chocolate.

Before directly going into the differences, let us first check a brief overview of latte and mocha.

The Bottom Line

 Choosing between Latte and Mocha is almost like being on the fence. However, the answer to this question depends on your liking, taste preferences or your mood.

If you don’t want or prefer much bitter coffee, then a latte can be your ideal option since it is more of a milky drink since it contains more milk and you can enjoy the taste of coffee too.

On the other note, mocha is a type of beverage that is a mixture of bitter coffee, the sweetness of the chocolate, and the milky whipped creamy flavour.

People who like bitter coffee or prefer the sweetness of milky flavour or just the creamy texture of milk often opts for Mocha.

Whatever you feel excited to hear about, your taste is of a similar kind, so whether you choose mocha coffee or latte coffee it is based on your taste and liking.

So just choose according to you, we hope this guide had helped you to find out the difference between latte and mocha, we hope that the difference between latte and mocha is clear to you.

We also included the basic recipe of both these drinks, so try them out at your home. Also, tell us about which one is your favourite, is it latte or mocha?


A coffee enthusiast from Asia keeps trying new hot beverages and sharing all his experiences with the internet. Aayush is a writer by profession who only thinks about coffee. He loves to brew and create unique recipes and share them with the public. Aayush had tried different types of coffee from different sides of the world. His favorite coffee is the Hawaiin Kona Coffee.

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