Three cups filled with different types of coffee

Mocha vs Latte: 6 Major Differences to Know

Audrey Harrison
Home brewer

Are you an espresso fan? If yes, then you must have heard of these two espresso-based drinks Mocha and Latte.

But when it comes to choosing one, it gets challenging, right?

These popular coffee drinks use espresso as a base and their unique ingredients and flavors create distinct taste experiences.

Thus to help you make the right choice, here I am.

Today in this article, I will tell you the difference between a mocha and a latte.

So let's get started.

Mocha coffee overview

What is Mocha?

Mocha is an espresso-based coffee drink. It is made by using rich espresso, chocolate, and steamed milk. People also called it a "caffe mocha". Sweet tooths like it the most.

Mocha coffee served in a cup

History of Mocha

The history of mocha belongs to the 15th century. It came into the picture when Yemeni traders exported their prized coffee beans from the Mocha port city to Europe.

The Mocha port city is today called Al Mokha. Today if we say mocha, it generally means espresso-based coffee which is complemented with some chocolate and milk.

Over the years it has won a place in the hearts of coffee lovers due to its delightful balance of coffee and chocolate flavors.

How to Make Mocha Coffee?


  • 1-2 shots of espresso
  • 5 ounces steamed milk
  • Half a teaspoon of chocolate/cocoa powder
  • Half a teaspoon of sugar (optional, as per taste)
  • Frothed milk on top

Step-by-step instructions

Step 1: Brew an espresso shot (or strong coffee)

Pull a shot of espresso using your espresso machine. In case you don't have an espresso machine, you can also brew a strong cup of coffee.

Step 2: Steam the milk

Take a saucepan and add milk to it. Keep the temperature around 140°F (60°C). You can use either a steamer or stovetop to do so. The end goal is to get a smooth and creamy texture, one that is neither thick nor foamy.

Step 3: Add chocolate to it

Take a mug and pour some chocolate from above. You can use any chocolate of your choice. Additionally, you can drizzle some chocolate syrup, cocoa powder, or even melted chocolate chips for a sweeter taste.

Step 4: Pour milk into it

Lastly, add the steamed milk into your mug and layer it with the espresso. Top it up with some whipped cream and chocolate chips for a luxurious touch.

Latte Overview

What is Latte?

A latte is a coffee drink made by combining espresso and steamed milk. It is topped with frothed milk from above. This drink is best known for its perfect balance of smooth and creamy flavors. It is also called a caffe latte.

Latte coffee

History of Latte coffee

The history of the latte falls back to the 17th century. It was made first in Europe.    
Earlier, it was known by different names like "caffe latte" in Italian and "cafe au lait" in French, both meant "coffee with milk."

Latte is a simple yet delightful combination of strong espresso and steamed milk, providing a smooth and balanced coffee experience.

But the best part about the latte is its versatility. Latte can be easily combined with different flavorings like vanilla, caramel, or even spices like cinnamon or nutmeg.

To top it all off, a latte is topped with impressive latte art, where skilled baristas create intricate designs on the milk foam surface.

Latte art has become a global trend, with competitions even being held to celebrate these artistic creations.

How to make a latte?


  • 1 - 2 shots of espresso
  • 5 - 6 ounces of steamed milk
  • Frothed milk on top
Step 1: Pull an espresso shot (or use a strong coffee)

Begin by brewing an espresso or strong coffee base.

Step 2: Steam the milk

Heat your milk and froth it as per the consistency desired. A latte needs a smooth and creamy texture topped with a thin layer of microfoam.

Step 3: Pour your latte

Take a mug and add espresso to it. Make sure you hold back the milk foam with a spoon. Once done, pour the steamed milk into the mug, and create layers. Lastly, top it off with a milk foam.

Mocha vs Latte: Quick Comparison

1) Sweetness & flavor

Due to the addition of chocolate, mocha is sweet. On the other hand, a latte is creamy and has a good balance of milk and espresso.

2) Taste & texture

When compared taste-wise, mocha has more chocolate. While the latte coffee has no chocolate traces. Additionally, it is smooth and provides a velvety mouthfeel.

3) Ingredients

Mocha has espresso, chocolate syrup/cocoa powder, and steamed milk as its core ingredients. On the other side, a latte is made using espresso, steamed milk, and foam.

4) Appearance

Mocha is dark brown in appearance with some swirls of chocolate. In contrast, latte is light in color with layers.

5) Caffeine content

Mocha has little caffeine due to espresso. The latte has equal caffeine content but is combined with a good amount of milk.

6) Variations

Mocha has variations which include white mocha, and mint mocha. While latte has variants like vanilla latte, caramel latte, etc.

Latte or Mocha: How to decide which one to choose?

The choice between a mocha and a latte boils down to your taste preferences! Here's a quick guide to help you pick your perfect cup:

Craving chocolate and caffeine both? Go for mocha!

If you're a chocoholic, mocha is your dream drink. This delightful drink combines rich espresso with chocolate, creating sweet and satisfying flavors.

It's the perfect pick-me-up for those who enjoy a touch of chocolate in their coffee.

Love a balanced coffee? Choose a latte!

For those who like a more classic coffee taste, the latte is the best.

This smooth and creamy drink combines espresso with steamed milk, offering a subtle sweetness and a comforting flavor profile.

It's ideal for those who like the pure taste of coffee with a touch of creamy richness.

Summing it up

Here, I have got you covered with the difference between mocha and latte.

That's all for this article.

Now go forward and try both mocha and latte and find what resonates best with your choices. 


Audrey Harrison

Team TAB
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I am a coffee aficionado based in Seattle. I have devoted my passion and expertise to perfecting the art of home coffee brewing. I became known for my exquisite pour-over and espresso creations. I source coffee beans from local roasters and explores ...