Iced Latte vs. Iced Coffee: Choose Your Drink!

Here’s everything you need to know about how to make iced latte and iced coffee, as well as their differences, pros, and cons.
Samanta Fryer
Samanta Fryer
Samanta Fryer is our senior editor and content writer, at CoffeeVibe. Apart from writing and reading, she’s fond of the coffee brewing process and enjoys tasting new coffe read more
Reviewed By
Ryan Hendricks
Ryan Hendricks
Ryan Hendricks is our tester, who puts products through their paces. He used to be a barista and is now a full-time coffee enthusiast. He’s always testing out new gadgets, read more
Last updated: August 09, 2023
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Although both are popular coffee drinks, iced latte and iced coffee are two different drinks that shouldn’t be confused for each other. The main difference between these two drinks is the amount of milk contained in each. Also, while iced coffee is made with brewed coffee, a latte has a shot or two of espresso instead. Both drinks are easy to make, and the methods of preparing them are quite similar. 

In this iced latte vs. iced coffee review, we will compare these two iced coffee drinks. This article also includes a detailed step-by-step breakdown of how to prepare each of them, as well the specific pros and cons of each type of drink. Read on to find out which of these refreshing coffee drinks is better for you. 

What is an Iced Latte?

Iced Latte vs. Iced Coffee: Choose Your Drink!
An iced latte is a drink with espresso, milk, and an optional sweetener.

Given the different varieties of coffee-based drinks available, it isn’t uncommon for people to compare different coffee drinks with this mocha vs. latte review. An iced latte is an espresso-based Trusted Source What Is Espresso? Espresso is a popular coffee shop drink. Learn what defines espresso, how to drink it, how to store it, and why it’s so popular. drink. It is basically a mixture of espresso and milk (with an optional sweetener added). It contains an abundance of milk, with the espresso giving the drink a strong coffee effect. You can prepare a latte with a single or double espresso shot to give the drink a stronger flavor and darker appearance.  

How to Make an Iced Latte

The ingredients for preparing an iced latte are simple. As earlier mentioned, all you need is an espresso, milk, and sweetener. The exact quantity of each of these to be used depends largely on the quantity of latte you want to make. For a 16oz cup of iced latte, you need 2 espresso shots, 8 ounces of milk, and 2 ounces of liquid sweetener (optional). 

Making the espresso 

To prepare an iced latte, you need to make your espresso first. After all, this is what makes an iced latte. Nothing else (not even strongly brewed coffee) will make your drink a latte. You can use a single or double shot of espresso, depending on your preferences. 

To prepare your espresso, you can use any type of roast coffee. However, an espresso roast coffee is always the ideal choice. This type of roast coffee is darker and has a stronger coffee flavor. You will also need an espresso machine. For this, you can use a standard espresso machine. This is more expensive but will give you the best espresso flavor. However, if you don’t have an espresso machine, a manual espresso maker or a stovetop espresso maker will work too. A cheap one like the Primula Aluminum Espresso Maker will whip up a good enough espresso while helping you save cost.

The milk

Most latte fans agree that the best type of milk for preparing a latte Trusted Source Oat milk vs. Almond milk: Which is better in a latte? We put oat milk and nut milk “barista blends” through the toughest test possible. Can they replace cow? is whole milk. This is particularly true for hot latte drinks where the milk frothing is a big deal. For an iced latte, frothing is not very important, which means pretty much any type of milk will work. Depending on your preference, you can use coconut milk, soy milk, almond, and even skimmed milk. However, heavy cream milk is not recommended due to its high-fat content. 


There are various ways to sweeten an iced latte drink. Sugar and other types of granulated sweeteners will have a hard time dissolving in the drink. You may also decide not to sweeten it at all. If you must, a liquid sweetener like maple syrup, caramel sauce, or flavored coffee creamer is recommended. You may also use flavored milk instead of regular milk. 

Final step

Once your espresso is ready, the steps for preparing an iced latte are pretty straightforward. First, fill your glass till it is about half or two-thirds filled with ice. Next, pour in your milk. The quantity of milk to use depends on your preference, but most people simply fill the cup till the ice is fully covered with the milk. 

Next, you simply pour your double-shot espresso over the ice and milk mixture in the cup. Stir the mixture after adding the espresso, and enjoy! You can add the espresso gradually and check the taste as you do so until the flavor is just right for you.

Calorie Chart

Type of Milk Number of Calories
Whole Milk 110
Nonfat Milk 65
2% Fat Milk 92

The Pros and Cons 


  • Strong coffee flavor 
  • Less caffeine per serving 
  • More balanced coffee 


    • May not be a good choice for those looking to cut calories 

What is an Iced Coffee?

Iced Latte vs. Iced Coffee: Choose Your Drink!
It may be prepared either by brewing coffee in the normal way and then serving it over ice or in cold milk, or by brewing the coffee cold.

Iced coffee is a cold coffee drink made with brewed coffee. It can be prepared with a splash of milk or with no milk at all. People who prefer strong coffee often prefer to take theirs without milk. Even for those who prefer to add milk to theirs, only a small quantity of milk is added. This, and the fact that brewed coffee is used instead of espresso, is the major difference between iced coffee and iced latte. 

How to Make an Iced Coffee?

The first step for preparing iced coffee is to brew your coffee. There are different brewing methods you can use for this. You can use a French press or any other brewing tool such as Keurig or a drip coffee maker. 

Cold-brew your dark roasted coffee in a French press or drip coffee maker. Cold brewing is more recommended for drinks intended to be served cold as it helps to preserve the flavor and taste. Preparing coffee hot and cooling it later may make it lose its flavor.


The steps for preparing the iced coffee itself are very similar to the method for making a latte. First, you put ice in a tall glass. You can put as much as you like. Then pour the coffee over the ice. It is recommended that you let the coffee cool down after brewing before adding it to the ice. Hot or warm coffee will melt the ice completely, and you will end up with an extremely diluted drink. You can leave your coffee black like that, but you may also add some milk (preferably cold milk) if you want. 

Alternatively, you can use the blended ice coffee method which involves blending all your ingredients (coffee, ice, sweetener, and milk) in a blender. 

Calorie Chart

Type of Milk Number of Calories
Whole Milk 19
Nonfat Milk 10
2% Fat Milk 15

The Pros and Cons 


  • The calorie content is low (it has no calories when milk isn’t added) 
  • Easy to prepare (no espresso machine needed) 
  • Strong coffee flavor 


  • Caffeine content is high

Which One Is Better: an Iced Latte or Iced Coffee

Iced Latte vs. Iced Coffee: Choose Your Drink!
Iced coffee is made using cooled brewed coffee and is usually served with a splash of milk. On the other hand, an iced latte is made using strong espresso shots instead of brewed coffee and is made using a much larger amount of milk.

So now that you know the difference between iced coffee and an iced latte, which of these drinks is better for you. The answer to this really depends on your specific preferences. Iced tea is a strong-tasting cup of chilled coffee with little to no milk. If you are a coffee-head that prefers drinks with a strong coffee flavor, it is an ideal choice for you. It is also perfect for those who want more caffeine in their drink but would prefer to cut down on their calorie intake. 

However, if you prefer a more balanced cup of coffee with a good enough quantity of milk and sweetener, then an iced latte may be preferred. Iced latte also has a strong coffee flavor, although it has less caffeine content. 

Final thoughts

To sum it up, the main differences between an iced latte and iced coffee are in the brewing method used for the coffee and in the milk-to-coffee ratio. Iced coffee can be prepared with pretty much any type of brewed coffee. On the other hand, an iced latte is made with an espresso, which is a special type of brew made with an espresso machine. 

Additionally, the amount of milk contained in an iced latte is higher than what you have in iced coffee. In fact, you may not even use milk at all for your coffee, while the latte is basically a coffee-flavored milk drink. The result is two different drinks with remarkably different tastes, calorie, and caffeine content but equally refreshing and delicious depending on your preferences. 


What Is Espresso?
Espresso is a popular coffee shop drink. Learn what defines espresso, how to drink it, how to store it, and why it’s so popular.
Oat milk vs. Almond milk: Which is better in a latte?
We put oat milk and nut milk “barista blends" through the toughest test possible. Can they replace cow?

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