Iced Latte vs Iced Coffee: What’s The Difference?

When it’s hot out and I am in serious need of coffee, I enjoy popping into a local coffeeshop for an iced latte. But if I’m near a Dunkin’, then I go for an iced coffee to cool me off and quench my need for caffeine.

But is there really any difference between an iced coffee and an iced latte? Heck yeah there is! These two drinks have different ingredients and are prepared in different ways. But the simplest answer is that one uses brewed coffee while the other uses espresso. Plus, the iced latte is mostly milk compared to the iced coffee.

Keep reading to learn more about about how these cold caffeinated drinks differ from one another. Cause if you’re not a regular coffee drinker then you might be confused as to why these aren’t the same things.

What Is An Iced Latte?

I know what you might be thinking. That to make an iced latte you just whip up a hot latte and then pour it over ice.

iced cafe latte

But that’s not how you make an iced latte. If you tried that most of the ice would melt and you’d have a cold, watery latte.

Yuck!

What makes an iced latte a latte is that it uses espresso, so technically it’s an espresso drink instead of a coffee drink. Plus it has more milk than an iced coffee.

Here’s the components of an iced latte:

  • espresso shot
  • ice
  • cold milk
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If you’re thinking, wait a minute, doesn’t a latte use steamed milk? then you’d be correct, but cold milk is used for an iced latte.

Of course, you can always use a milk frother that doesn’t heat the milk if you want a bit of texture to your iced latte milk.

How To Make An Iced Latte At Home

If you find yourself stuck at home and craving an iced latte, then it’s super easy to make. You’ll need a 12 oz. glass, espresso, milk, and ice.

Directions:

  1. Make one shot of espresso
  2. Fill a 12 oz. glass with ice
  3. Add cold milk until glass is 3/4 full
  4. Pour in espresso shot
  5. Stir and enjoy

If you want some easy, foamy milk, then Starbucks recommends putting the milk in a contained with a lid and shaking it up before pouring it into your cup. Check out the video below for more info.

What Is An Iced Coffee?

I know what you might be thinking. That to make an iced coffee you just whip up a hot coffee and then pour it over ice.

iced coffee with milk

But that’s not how you make an iced coffee. If you tried that most of the ice would melt and you’d have a cold, watery cup of coffee.

Yuck!

What makes an iced coffee a coffee is that it uses brewed coffee, not espresso. Unliked the iced latte, the iced coffee doesn’t require any milk, though you can add some to cater to your taste.

Here’s the components of an iced coffee:

  • brewed coffee
  • ice
  • cold milk (optional)

The important think to know about an iced coffee is that it is not the same as a cold brew coffee.

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Tip: Brew your coffee a bit stronger than usual for an iced coffee so that when the ice melts it wont’ be too weak.

How To Make An Iced Coffee At Home

If you find yourself stuck at home and craving an iced coffee, then it’s super easy to make. You’ll need a glass, brewed coffee, milk (optional), and ice.

Directions:

  1. Brew some hot coffee and let it cool down some.
  2. Fill your glass with ice.
  3. Pour in the desired amount of coffee over the ice.
  4. Add any milk or sugar, if desired.
  5. Stir and enjoy.

If you want to brew your coffee in a French press for your iced coffee, then the video below from Starbucks has great tips.

The Takeaway

As you can see, though they both are cold, caffeinated drinks, there are distinct differences between an iced latte and an iced coffee.

Here are the two main differences between the two drinks:

  • The iced latte is made with espresso while the iced coffee is made with regular brewed coffee.
  • The iced latte is more milk than espresso, while the iced coffee doesn’t require any milk (though you can add it)

The iced latte has more caffeine than an iced coffee due to espresso having higher levels of it than regular coffee.

And you’re not adding milk to your iced coffee, then the iced latte has more calories as a result of the milk being an ingredient. If calories are a concern for you, then you can use low-fat or non-fat milk in your iced latte.

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So, which of these is better? In my opinion it’s almost always gonna be the iced latte! But why not order up both and see which one tastes better to you!

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