Gingerbread Latte: A warm and cozy holiday latte made with a real gingerbread syrup, freshly brewed espresso, steamed milk, and whipped cream. Grab a blanket and crank up your favorite Christmas music while you enjoy this one at home.
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As you may already know, I’m a big fan of iced lattes. Even more so than cold brew and iced coffee, iced lattes are my go-to summer drink.
Needless to say, 2019 has been the year of the latte for me. When I started working at home full-time on this site in May, I needed to find ways to cut my spending. Not so surprisingly, one of the easiest ways to do this was to all but cut out my Starbucks habit from my life.
My 1hr+ commute each day drove me right past a Starbucks with a drive-thru. And this made it allll too easy to stop for coffee, especially on mornings when getting out of the house on time with a baby packed for daycare was more important than making a cup of coffee in a travel mug.
Which was like, almost every morning. Sigh.
Anyway, once the weather turned here in November into what always feels more like winter than fall, I switched from my cold morning drinks over to hot drinks again. The batch of vanilla syrup I was using for my iced vanilla lattes was transformed into my syrup for hot vanilla lattes.
And as soon as the spirit of the holiday season hit me, I felt this inexplicable need to make a gingerbread latte.
I’m not sure what came over me! I’ve never had a gingerbread latte before and I’ve been a little leery about mixing the flavor with strong espresso.
But alas, since I really do love all things gingerbread, I dove in head first and came out the other side absolutely loving this warm and cozy holiday drink.
What is a Latte?
For those of you who don’t know, a latte is simply steamed milk poured into espresso.
There are lots of espresso drinks that have steamed milk poured into the espresso, like the cappuccino and macchiato. But what sets them apart from each other is how much milk is added and what order the milk is added (i.e., before or after the espresso is added to the cup).
A medium size flavored latte (the Grande size at Starbucks) is typically 16 ounces. In a 16 ounce latte, you’ll find:
- 2 shots of espresso, which total around 2 ounces,
- approximately 2 ounces of liquid sweetener (vanilla, hazelnut, pumpkin, coconut, peppermint, etc.),
- approximately 8 ounces of steamed milk or eggnog (for an eggnog latte!), and
- foam from the steamed milk or eggnog.
How to Make a Latte at Home
I make my own lattes at home in the fall and winter months so if you want read all my ramblings about lattes (or Pin it to read later), hop on over to that post. Otherwise, I’ve quickly summarized some of that info here so keep on reading.
STEP 1: Brewed hot espresso goes into the cup first. You can brew your espresso at home with any kind of single-serve espresso machine (my go-to is the Nespresso Vertuo) or a stove top espresso maker.
STEP 2: For the liquid sweetener, the choice is yours! For this gingerbread latte, my recipe for a gingerbread syrup is below in the recipe card or you can find some online if making your own isn’t your thing.
STEP 3: Add a couple ounces of sweetener to the hot espresso – more for a sweeter drink, less for a stronger one.
You don’t need to use a liquid sweetener though – sugar will dissolve nicely in this hot drink.
STEP 4: Steamed milk goes in next. To steam your milk, you can use an electric milk frother or you can steam your milk in a small sauce pan on the stove and then whir it up in the blender to create some foam.
STEP 5: Slowly pour the milk into the cup.
The espresso, liquid flavoring, and steamed milk won’t fill up the cup so you’ll have some room on the top for the foam from the steamed milk. To me, the foam adds a silky finish to my latte, much like the effect the Nespresso machines add to the top of the brewed coffee.
STEP 6: For this gingerbread latte, we also added a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of cinnamon to the top of the drink in addition to the milk foam. Then we nestled a little gingerbread man into the whipped cream and foam. So much fun!
This latte is the kind that will make you want to snuggle up in front of the fire and Christmas tree. Cue all the holiday music!
If you love the flavor of gingerbread as much as I do, you will LOVE this gingerbread latte as much as I do too!
For the gingerbread syrup:
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- ½ tsp ground allspice
- ⅛ tsp ground cloves
- 1 tsp molasses
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup sugar
For the lattes:
- 4 shots (4 oz total) hot, brewed espresso
- 4 oz gingerbread syrup
- 16 oz milk (skim, whole, almond, soy, oat, etc.)
- ¼ cup whipped cream
- Ground cinnamon
- Gingerbread men
- To make the gingerbread syrup: Whisk all of the syrup ingredients together in a small sauce pan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 10 minutes. Strain the syrup through cheesecloth or a coffee filter into an airtight jar or bottle. Use immediately or refrigerate until ready to use.
- To make the lattes: Pour or brew the espresso into two 16 oz coffee mugs or heatproof glass coffee mugs (2 oz per mug).
- Add the gingerbread syrup to each mug.
- Pour the steamed milk into the mugs and gently stir until the milk, syrup, and espresso are combined.
- Dollop the milk foam and 2 tablespoons of whipped cream on top of each latte. Sprinkle each with ground cinnamon and add a gingerbread man to each mug.
gingerbread syrup adapted from Everyday Annie
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