Espresso vs Cappuccino: What’s the Difference? 

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Are you looking to transition from standard coffee to something more exotic, and wondering what the difference is between espresso vs cappuccino? You’re in luck! In this blog post, we’ll be exploring all that these two popular coffee drinks have to offer – including their unique origins, distinct flavors, and range of uses.

Get ready to satisfy your caffeine craving by understanding why it’s important not just for taste but also for culture. From baristas making the perfect pour-over cup at a local cafe near you or instant latte pods finished with foam on top in Rome – espressos and cappuccinos deliver different experiences every time. Let’s learn the facts today!

Espresso vs Cappuccino: What’s the Difference?

Espresso coffee
A Cup Of Espresso Coffee

Espresso and cappuccino are two of the most widely-recognized types of coffee drinks, but if you’ve ever been to a cafe or ordered one online, you may have asked yourself “What’s the difference?” We’ll explain all that in more detail below


The main similarity between espresso and cappuccino is that both are made from espresso shots. They are both from the same espresso base, but cappuccinos have more added ingredients that give them a unique flavor profile. Both drinks can energize you and be enjoyed at any time of day.


Ingredients Used

One of the key differences between espresso and cappuccino lies in the ingredients used. Espresso, known for its intense flavor and strong kick, is crafted with just one ingredient – finely ground espresso beans. On the other hand, cappuccino indulges the senses with its three components: a shot of espresso, velvety steamed milk, and a heavenly layer of foam. This delightful combination gives cappuccino its distinct creaminess and richer texture, elevating the coffee experience to new heights.


Another notable difference between the two drinks is how they are meticulously prepared. When crafting an espresso shot, hot water is forcefully pushed through finely ground coffee beans, extracting the rich flavors and aromas in a matter of seconds. On the other hand, creating a cappuccino requires a slightly more intricate process. The skilled barista skillfully operates an espresso machine to brew the perfect shot of espresso, which is then harmoniously blended with velvety steamed milk and topped with a luscious layer of creamy foam, resulting in a beverage that is both visually appealing and compelling to the taste buds.Taste

When it comes to flavor, the contrasting ingredients of these two drinks result in significant variation. Espresso, known for its bold and robust profile, carries a distinctive bitter aftertaste. On the other hand, cappuccino offers a milder taste with a subtle touch of sweetness. Adding steamed milk and foam in cappuccinos enhances their texture and creates a creamy and frothy indulgence that sets them apart from espressos. So, whether you prefer a strong and bitter kick or a smoother and creamier experience, these two drinks cater to different tastes.

Serving Size

Espressos are generally served in smaller cup sizes (around 1-2 ounces) whereas cappuccinos are served in larger sizes (up to 8 ounces). This difference is because cappuccinos are created with a combination of espresso and additional ingredients, such as steamed milk and foam. This means the serving size of a cappuccino is typically larger than an espresso.


In terms of cost, both drinks are usually relatively affordable. Espressos are less expensive since the ingredients are simple – just an espresso shot and some hot water. Conversely, Cappuccinos cost more because of their additional ingredients (steamed milk and foam).

Discover A Cup Of Espresso

Whether you’re looking for a stronger, more bitter kick or a milder and creamier sip, there are plenty of options. From classic espressos to white cappuccinos topped with cinnamon and nutmeg, find the perfect cup that suits your taste buds. With so many delicious variations out


There are some notable differences to consider when comparing the texture of espressos and cappuccinos. Espressos typically have a stronger and more concentrated texture, resulting from the brewing process and the finely ground coffee beans. The resulting espresso shot boasts a bold flavor profile that can be quite intense.

However, if you prefer a milder taste, adding hot water to your espresso can help mellow the flavor slightly without compromising its intensity. For those who enjoy experimenting with different texture profiles, adding cream and sugar can provide a smoother and sweeter experience, offering a delightful contrast to espresso’s rich and robust nature.


When it comes to flavor, espressos are known for their bold and intense taste, which surpasses that of cappuccinos. The brewing process of an espresso shot involves high pressure and finely ground coffee beans, resulting in a robust flavor that can truly awaken your senses. Moreover, due to the absence of steamed milk or other ingredients, espressos are not as creamy or sweet as cappuccinos, offering a distinct and unadulterated coffee experience.


The difference between espressos and cappuccinos is even more distinct when it comes to taste. Espressos boast a much bolder flavor profile than that of cappuccinos, offering an intense and earthy kick that can be quite overwhelming for some.

Level Of Caffeine

The amount of caffeine in espressos and cappuccinos can also vary greatly. On average, an espresso typically contains more caffeine than a cappuccino, it usually has around 70-80mg of caffeine per shot, whereas cappuccinos typically contain just 40-50mg. However, this all depends on the type and brand of coffee used in the drink. Ultimately, if you’re looking for an extra energy kick, it may be best to opt for an espresso over a cappuccino. This is because espressos generally use higher pressure during the brewing process, resulting in stronger flavors and higher levels of caffeine.

However, it’s important to note that the exact amount of caffeine can depend on the coffee beans and espresso machine used. For instance, espresso machines that use higher pressure tend to extract more caffeine from the beans, resulting in a stronger cup of coffee.

Discover A Cup Of Cappuccino

Cappuccino Coffee
A Cup Of Cappuccino With Arts

Cappuccinos 1, unlike espressos, are a soothing blend of strong espresso and creamy, frothy milk. This combination results in a velvety and smooth drink that is a delight to the senses.


The texture of cappuccinos can vary greatly depending on the brewing process and the milk quality used. When expertly crafted, a well-made cappuccino showcases a velvety smoothness that gently caresses your palate. Adding steamed or hot milk creates a luscious and creamy mouthfeel, while the perfectly frothed foam crowns the beverage with a delicate layer of indulgence. Sipping on a cappuccino is a truly satisfying experience, as each sip invites you into a world of rich flavors and comforting warmth.


Cappuccinos also have a sweeter and milder flavor profile than espressos, allowing for a more balanced taste. The reason for this is because of the added milk and foam. This allows a milder espresso flavor to shine through while maintaining its distinctive and bold character. The sweetness of the milk also helps to mellow out the intense notes of espresso, resulting in an overall smoother tasting experience.

Cappuccinos can also be enhanced with various flavors, such as sweet syrups, cocoa powder, spices, and flavored foams. This makes cappuccinos incredibly versatile drinks that can be tailored to each individual’s taste preference.


With their perfect balance of flavors, Cappuccinos offer a delightful way to savor the essence of espresso without overwhelming intensity. The harmonious combination of rich espresso, velvety steamed milk, and creamy foam creates a symphony of taste sensations. The gentle warmth of the milk envelops the robust espresso, creating a smooth and luxurious texture, elevating every sip. Whether you prefer a subtle and delicate flavor or a bold and robust profile, cappuccinos cater to all taste preferences, making each cup a truly enjoyable experience.

Level Of Caffeine

Cappuccinos are generally lower in caffeine than espressos because most cappuccino recipes call for more milk than espresso. This makes them a great choice for those who want to enjoy the taste of coffee without the extra buzz that comes along with it. A cup of cappuccino has about one-quarter of the caffeine content of a cup of espresso. The exact amount will vary depending on the coffee, milk, and other ingredients used in the recipe.

Cappuccinos also make an excellent alternative to caffeinated drinks like energy drinks and soda for those seeking to reduce their caffeine intake.

Can You Make A Cappuccino From An Espresso?

Yes, you certainly can! A cappuccino is essentially an espresso with steamed milk and foam added to it. All you have to do is brew a shot of espresso and then add warm or hot milk and a layer of frothy foam. You can also adjust the ratios of coffee, milk, and foam to create your ideal flavor profile.

For those looking to save time and money, purchase pre-made espresso-based cappuccinos from stores or online retailers. These ready-to-drink beverages are perfect for busy mornings when you don’t have the time or energy to make a full cappuccino from scratch.

When Should You Choose The Cappuccino And Espresso?

When it comes to choosing between the cappuccino and espresso, it really depends on your individual preferences. Espresso has a more intense flavor profile with higher levels of caffeine, so if you’re looking for a stronger coffee kick, an espresso is the way to go. On the other hand, if you want something that’s still full-flavored but less intense, a cappuccino is the perfect choice.


The time of day can also be a factor when deciding between the cappuccino and espresso. Since espresso has more caffeine, it’s best enjoyed in the morning or during the afternoon for an extra pick-me-up. Cappuccinos, on the other hand, make excellent evening drinks as they have much less caffeine content.


In the afternoon, an espresso and cappuccino can be enjoyed depending on your preferences. Espresso is a great choice for those looking to stay energized during the day while a cappuccino provides just enough coffee flavor without too much caffeine kick.


In the evening, a cappuccino is usually the preferred choice. As mentioned previously, its lower caffeine content makes it a great option for getting your coffee fix without keeping you up at night.

Tips To Enhance Your Cup of Espresso And Cappuccino

If you’re looking to make your cup of espresso or cappuccino even better, one easy way to do it is by adding some milk foam on top. Milk foam gives the drink a smooth and creamy texture that is perfect for sipping slowly and savoring each sip. You can easily make milk foam with an electric frother or steam wand, then, pour it over your espresso or cappuccino and enjoy.

You can also add some flavorings such as cinnamon, nutmeg or vanilla to your coffee drinks for an extra special touch. These flavors will make the drink stand out and give it a unique twist you’ll surely love.


Espresso vs cappuccino is a matter of personal preference. Depending on the time of day you enjoy your coffee, one may be better. Ultimately, espresso and cappuccino are delicious choices and can be easily enhanced with milk foam and flavorings for an even more enjoyable experience. So next time you’re debating between espresso or cappuccino, try them both and determine what suits your needs the best!


Does Cappuccino Have More Caffeine Than Espresso?

No, cappuccino typically has less caffeine than espresso because it contains more milk. An 8-ounce cup of cappuccino usually contains around 70-80 milligrams of caffeine, while an 8-ounce cup of espresso usually contains 100-150 milligrams of caffeine.

Is Cappuccino Taste Better?

Some people prefer espresso’s intense flavor while others enjoy cappuccino’s creamy taste. Ultimately, it comes down to what tastes better for you and which one you’d rather have in the morning or throughout the day. Try both drinks out and decide for yourself which one is your favorite!

Can You Add Syrups to Cappuccino?

Yes, you can add syrups to cappuccinos. Popular choices include caramel, hazelnut and vanilla. You simply add the syrup directly into your steamed milk or espresso shot before you pour it into your cup. Adding a flavored syrup will give your cappuccino an extra level of sweetness and flavor that you’ll be sure to love.

Is It Possible To Make Cappuccino Without An Espresso Machine?

Yes, it is possible to make cappuccino without an espresso machine. You can use a stovetop moka pot or French press to shoot your espresso. Once the espresso is made, add heated milk foam to the top and enjoy a homemade cappuccino. Alternatively, you can use instant coffee instead of espresso for an even easier preparation process.

Does Cappuccino Have More Calories Than Espresso?

Yes, cappuccino typically has more calories than espresso because it contains milk. An 8-ounce cup of cappuccino usually contains around 80-100 calories, while an 8-ounce cup of espresso usually contains just 10-30 calories. However, the calorie count can vary depending on what type of milk and syrups you use in your cappuccinos. So if you’re counting calories, keep track of how much milk and syrup you add!

Is Cappuccino Healthier Than Coffee?

It depends. If you just drink plain cappuccinos without added syrups, then yes, cappuccino is healthier than coffee. This is because it contains fewer calories and less caffeine. However, if you add a lot of syrups or creamers, cappuccino can be just as unhealthy as coffee. Additionally, if you opt for a non-dairy milk alternative such as almond milk, your cappuccino will be healthier than coffee since it won’t contain any saturated fat.

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