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Caramel Macchiato

Caramel Macchiato {Starbucks Copycat} – Save money and make this delicious caramel macchiato at home with just 4 simple ingredients in just 5 minutes!

Caramel Macchiato

Caramel Macchiato

Caramel Macchiatos were my go-to drink freshman year of college.  Our university only had a cafe that “served Starbucks” so the menu was very, very limited with the most exciting thing being the caramel macchiato.  I started drinking those almost every day and really fell in love with them.  Now at the time, I’ll admit that I didn’t know the difference between a caramel macchiato and a caramel latte but as time when on and I got to be more of a coffee snob, I realized that while prepared slightly differently from a latte, it also has both caramel sauce and vanilla simple syrup which made it taste even better!

Now the biggest problem I have found in making caramel macchiatos at home is that it is a bit harder to get as much frothy milk on top.  If you have a milk frother or a milk steamer at home, then you will have the same kind of frothy milk that a coffee shop has but if not, the closest you can do is probably an immersion blender, blender, or a handheld mixer.  It may sound silly to use any of those things to froth your milk but it does work, albeit just not to the same level as a coffee shop.  As you can see in pictures, my milk only frothed up a little.  It will still taste just as good though! Additionally, using milk with as high of a fat content as possible will help with how frothy it is.

For a fun spin, try making this recipe with bourbon salted caramel sauce!

Common Questions About Making a Caramel Macchiato

What is the difference between a caramel macchiato and a caramel latte?

The difference between a caramel macchiato and a caramel latte is that a caramel macchiato is made by putting vanilla syrup, milk, foam, espresso, and then caramel syrup in a cup in that order.  In a caramel latte, the order is caramel syrup, espresso, and milk (plus sometimes whipped cream).

How can I steam milk at home?

One of the best parts of a latte at a coffee shop is the steamed milk in the latte.  The easiest way I have found to get a similar effect at home is once you have heated your milk with the caramel, use an immersion blender to foam it up a bit before pouring into a mug.

Can I make a caramel macchiato without espresso?

Yes, so there are a few different options for ways to get close to espresso.  The cheapest option would be to brew quite strong coffee in a normal coffee pot which won’t be exactly the same but it’ll work.  If you have a moka pot or an aeropress coffee maker, those will get you pretty close to regular espresso.  If you use the moka pot or espresso, follow the same proportions in the recipe but if you choose to go the strongly brewed coffee route, use 3/4 cups coffee and 1/2 cup milk.

Can I make this drink iced?

Yes! Click HERE for my iced caramel macchiato recipe.

Caramel Macchiato Starbucks Copycat

Can’t get enough of this caramel macchiato recipe? Try these other recipes!

Please note that this recipe is inspired by the drink from Starbucks and thus may not be a perfect copy. It has been lovingly created at home by a Starbucks fan for others who love the drink and want to make a one at home using simple ingredients.

Macchiato Recipe

Yield: 1 Serving

Caramel Macchiato

Caramel Macchiato

Caramel Macchiato {Starbucks Copycat} - Save money and make this delicious caramel macchiato at home with just 4 simple ingredients in just 5 minutes!

Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 7 minutes



  1. In a small saucepan over medium heat, warm milk.
  2. Once milk has warmed, use an immersion blender, blender, or handheld mixer to froth milk (optional).
  3. Pour vanilla simple syrup into the bottom of a mug before topping it with 3/4 of the milk. Leave the frothy milk in the pan. Pour the espresso over the milk before adding on the remaining frothy milk.
  4. Drizzle with caramel sauce and serve.


1. It is optional to whip the milk but it does get it closer to the consistency of the steamed milk that is used in lattes at coffee shops.

2. Vanilla extract is NOT a substitute for vanilla syrup. If you don't have vanilla syrup, you can make it yourself. Just google "vanilla simple syrup" and you will find options.

3. Don't have an espresso machine? No worries - use 1/2 cup milk and 3/4 cup strongly brewed coffee or make the "espresso" with an aeropress.

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