Coffee Ratios For Every Taste, From Classic To Modern


Coffee has been a beloved beverage for centuries, and its popularity has only increased over time. As coffee culture has evolved, so have the ratios of ingredients used in classic and modern coffee beverages. In this article, we’ll explore the classic and modern ratios of a Napolitano espresso, cappuccino, Americano, latte, macchiato, and filter coffee.

History and Tradition

pile of coffee bags

Coffee has a rich history and tradition, and the ratios of ingredients used in coffee beverages have evolved over time. The Napolitano espresso, for example, has been a staple of Italian coffee culture for decades. The Napolitano espresso is usually a dark-roasted blend of arabica and robusta providing an oily, nutty, strong, and chocolatey flavor that is served with water to clean your palette before drinking the shot. The single shot consists of 7-9g of ground coffee yielding about 25ml of espresso, approximately 1:3 ratio.

The traditional cappuccino is also quite different from what many are accustomed to in the US and other western countries. The ratio between espresso, steamed milk, and foam is essential. Moreover, they emphasize the temperature of the milk being within the correct range more than they care for latte art. Cappuccinos sometimes don’t have any art on them, but a large circle of foam, which is beautiful by itself, at least in my opinion.

The Americano, which is made by adding hot water to a shot of espresso, has its roots in World War II when American soldiers would dilute the strong espresso they encountered in Italy to make it more palatable. The latte, which is made with a larger ratio of steamed milk and foam, became popular in the United States in the 1980s and 1990s. The macchiato, which features a shot of espresso topped with a small amount of foam, has been a staple of Italian coffee culture for generations.

How People Prefer to Drink Today

Today, people have a wider range of preferences when it comes to coffee beverages. Some prefer a classic Napolitano espresso, while others prefer the more modern and creamy cappuccino. Americanos, lattes, and macchiatos are also popular choices, as are filter coffee and pour-over coffee.

When it comes to roast preferences, dark-roast used to be the “classic” roast traditionally used in Italy. One of the reasons is economics, making coffee cheap and affordable, hence using a higher ratio of Robusta beans. Plenty of local and specialized roasters offer all kinds of light-roasted single origins that have many happy customers supporting them. Light roasts have a brighter and more acidic flavor, while dark roasts have a more robust and full-bodied flavor.

Personally, like many others, I find the balance, well… in the medium-roast range, where flavors are well-balanced, offering some of the chocolatey, bodied flavors along with light notes of fruits. However, some coffees are more acidic than others and while I do enjoy drinking them from time to time, I don’t find them enjoyable as daily drivers. Recently, I’ve been favoring a 75/25 blend as my daily driver both for espresso and cappuccino.

Coffee Ratios


Here are the classic and modern ratios of popular coffee beverages:

Napolitano Espresso: 7g coffee, 25ml beverage. 1:3 ratio Cappuccino: 1 part espresso, 1 part steamed milk, 1 part foam. 1:1:1 ratio Americano: 1 shot espresso, hot water. You can use 2 shots of espresso, just add more water. Don’t use too much water, it’ll ruin the drink. Latte: 1 part espresso, 3 parts steamed milk, 1 part foam Macchiato: 1 shot espresso, small amount of foam Filter coffee: varies based on personal preference, but typically 1:15 to 1:18 coffee to water ratio


  1. How many shots of espresso are in an Americano? An Americano typically contains 1 shot of espresso.

  2. Is an Americano 1 or 2 shots of espresso? An Americano typically contains 1 shot of espresso.

  3. Americano water or espresso first? The espresso is typically poured first and then topped with hot water.

  4. Cappuccino ratio in grams? The cappuccino ratio is typically 1:1:1 for espresso, steamed milk, and foam, but the exact measurements will vary based on the size of the cup being used.

  5. Flat White ratio? The flat white ratio is typically 1 part espresso, 3 parts steamed milk, with minimal foam.

  6. What is the difference between a flat white and a cappuccino? The main difference between a flat white and a cappuccino is the amount of foam. A cappuccino has a more pronounced layer of foam on top, while a flat white has a minimal amount of foam and a more balanced ratio of espresso and steamed milk. Additionally, the texture of the foam in a cappuccino is typically coarser, while the foam in a flat white is smoother and creamier. This difference in foam texture contributes to the difference in flavor and mouthfeel between the two beverages.

In conclusion, the ratios of ingredients used in coffee beverages vary based on tradition and personal preferences. The classic Napolitano espresso is a single shot of espresso, containing 25ml of coffee made from 7-9g of ground coffee. Modern espresso-based beverages, such as cappuccinos, lattes, or flat whites, typically use a double shot of espresso, with a 1:2 ratio of espresso to steamed milk. By understanding the ratios and ingredients used in popular coffee beverages, you can make an informed decision about which one is right for you. Whether you prefer a classic shot of espresso or a modern twist, there is a coffee beverage out there that will satisfy your cravings.

Check out some interesting topics...

Drinking Black Coffee As A Beginner - Coffee is an acquired taste and getting used to black coffee takes time. It'll always be bitter and intense but you'll love it.

The 3 Best Espresso Machines Under $500 For 2023 - Looking for an affordable Espresso Machine? Explore the Top 3 Espresso Machines Under $500 for the best espresso without breaking the bank.

Best Tamping Station Mat For Espresso Preparation - Checkout how a tamping station keeps your espresso setup clean and precise. Elevate your home brewing game effortlessly

Best 4 Grinders Under 500$ - A good grinder has more impact than a high-end espresso machine. Let's learn about 4 grinders that will up your espresso game for good.

The Best Lever Espresso Machines For Home - We provide you a list of unique lever espresso machines that will hook you into lever espresso machines for good

Best Roast Level For Robusta Coffee Beans - Is Robusta Still Relevant in 2023? Let's understand Robusta once and for all. Spoiler: it is absolutely useful

Best Espresso Machine Water Softener - Learn about the importance of espresso machine water softener and why it's a crucial factor your espresso machine's health and your espresso quality

The Best Black Friday Espresso Machines And Accessories Deals - 2023 black friday is here and this is the perfect time to upgrade your home barista game with the tools you've been longing for

How Many Mg Of Caffeine In A Cup Of Coffee - Find out how much caffeine content is in your favorite drinks based on studies and what factors impact caffeine extraction during the brew

Coffee And Health - How Are They Related - Important correlations between coffee and various health subjects. Enrich your knowledge regarding your coffee drinking habits and their affects on your health

Coffee Ratios For Every Taste, From Classic To Modern - Discover the perfect coffee to water ratios for classic and modern coffee beverages. Elevate your coffee game with our guide on coffee ratios.

Cortado Vs. Cappuccino: Differences & Recipes - Don't worry, after reading this guide you'll understand the differences and similarities between cortado and cappuccino once and for all.

Decaffeinated Coffee: A Brief Introduction - A common myth has it that decaf coffee simply can't taste as good. Luckily, it couldn't be further from the truth and let's see how

Espresso Benefits and Side Effects: A Balanced Overview - All about health benefits and side effects of drinking espresso as well as useful recommendations and guidelines for you.

Double Shot Espresso Caffeine - Discover caffeine limits and content in a double espresso shot. Get insights on espresso's caffeine impact. Learn more.

Normcore Scale Review: Easily One Of The Best Coffee Scales - It's better to get one digital scale for your coffee once than buying a new cheap one each year. This normcore scale might be the last you'll ever need

The Best Heat Exchanger Espresso Machines - An overview of the best heat exchanger machines to up your espresso game in 2024. If you're looking for your first espresso machine or upgrading your single boiler, you've come to the right place.

The Best Starter Espresso Machine For Beginners In 2024 - You can make superb espresso at home in 2024 with ease! This guide will help you choose the best starter espresso machine for you as well as everything else you might need

Long Black vs. Americano - What Are The Differences? Once And For All - Find out what are the differences between a long black, an americano and a lungo and how to make each one of them.

Once And For All: What Is A Single Origin Coffee - Everything you need to know about single origin coffees, why it is so popular, and why you should care.

This Is The Dripping Coffee Experience, All About Making Great Coffee At Home

Everything we write about we write either from personal experience or from great research online. Great coffee at home has never been easier, but with too much information out there, it might be difficult to understand where to start, and we hope to help you with that. Send us an email