How To Make Cold Foam At Home Like A Professional Barista!

How To Make Cold Foam At Home Like A Professional Barista!

Last updated on October 26th, 2023 at 16:55

I get asked a lot by coffee lovers, particularly in the summer season, how to make cold foam, thankfully is a very easy task. It looks more difficult than it is – in reality few ingredients are needed.

…and even less equipment. With a little practice anyone can and will be able to make cold foam that is on par with or even better than Starbucks.

Keep reading as I reveal how to make cold foam at home like a professional barista!

What Is Cold Foam?

In the simplest of descriptions, cold foam is frothy milk that is so fluffy like clouds and yet with denser, stiffer peaks. It’s made without steam or any heat source. Cold foam is perfect with cold coffee drinks, be it an iced cappuccino, nitro coffee, cold brew or an iced coffee.

Cold foam sits on top of your coffee drink and, due to the thick frothy texture, some remains on top while it cascades and drizzles down into your coffee. The result is a great tasting drink with an outstanding texture. It goes perfectly with a cold brew coffee, the drink that it is most commonly associated with.

Some recipes have it made with nonfat milk, other 2% fat.

What Is Cold Foam
Cold Foam On a Thai Coffee, Chiang Mai, Thailand

Read: What is vanilla sweet cream cold foam?

How To Make Cold Foam At Home With Frother

Making cold foam at home with a frother is very easy and requires little to no skill. There is no need for you to be an expert barista. As always, perfect practice makes perfect, and the best quality ingredients will get the best results.

Equipment Needed

For best results, you can seek out a Starbucks Verismo milk foamer, currently only available at Walmart. You will get great results with a handheld milk frother or an electric milk frother like the Aeroccino by Nespresso, which like the Verismo is an automatic milk frother.

There is no big difference in the end result between a handheld milk frother and an automatic milk frother. Both get great results and produce an abundance of foam and with great texture.


Very few ingredients are needed to make cold foam. At Latte Love Brew we stick to the chef’s principle of the best ingredients get you the best results.

  • 1/4 Cup of 2% milk.
  • 1/4 Cup of heavy cream.
  • 1/2 Cup of condensed milk.
  • 1 teaspoon of simple syrup.
  • A dash of French vanilla extract (optional).

The addition of the French vanilla extract is to emulate vanilla cold foam, one of the popular choices at Starbucks. I personally feel that their cold foam and vanilla cold foam has too much of an artificial taste to it. They flavor with a pump of vanilla syrup.

You can alter these ingredients above to suit your needs. The quest to make the greatest tasting coffee involves experimentation. For a truly natural taste use a fresh organic French vanilla pod to create the vanilla taste if you want to make vanilla cold foam.

Simple syrup is simply liquid sugar. Healthier options include brown sugar and coconut sugar if you are adding vanilla.

Vanilla Pods
Natural Ingredients Are Best


Add your ingredients into a pitcher and completely submerge your milk frother. With a handheld milk frother slowly pull your wand to the surface of your milk. Frothing for 20 to 25 seconds or until the foam is thick, creamy and fully stabilized.

When your cold foam is ready, pour it slowly into your cold brew coffee or iced coffee.

If you are looking to add French vanilla pod then you will need to put all your ingredients into a saucepan together with a freshly chopped organic French vanilla pod and slowly, add all your ingredients into a saucepan and heat at a low heat.

Stir slowly as your milk slowly warms up and do not let it boil. Maintain the temperature below simmering point and keep stirring until you have the flavor you are seeking.

Then let your milk cool down and decant into a glass container and keep it in your fridge.

Pro Tip: Using coconut sugar or brown sugar with vanilla produces a better flavor.

What Is The Best Milk For Cold Foam?

The question here really is which milk makes the creamiest and best quality cold foam. There is a matter of debate between full fat milk, 2% milk and the use of heavy cream.

I can personally tell you from a highly trusted source that Starbucks uses non-fat milk. If it’s cold foam that you want to replicate, and you have a preference for non-fat milk, by all means use that.

They get their milk to be extra thick due to a specially made bladeless blender that is custom-made for their outlets. Meanwhile, us coffee lovers and coffee enthusiasts we have to adapt and improvise.

Understand that what is best in terms of the flavor and the results that you, personally, are seeking. I’ve seen amazing results with 2% milk with heavy cream in a 50/50 half-and-half mix and an equal amount of sweetened condensed milk.

The result is an amazing texture and a cold foam that is notably denser and can easily support a cheeky layer of oat milk if you so wish.

Use The Best Milk That You Can

How To Make Cold Foam At Home Without A Frother

Using the same ingredients as above. You can place your ingredients into your French press until it is 1/3rd full and pump the plunger until you get good, thick, high quality cold foam.

Another option for making cold foam without a frother is to use a cocktail shaker and shake vigorously for about 2 minutes.

Notably when both your milk and your French press or cocktail shaker are ice-cold you get a better quality of foam, denser and more abundant.

Your third option of making cold foam at home without a frother is to use a regular food blender. Simply pour your milk into it and blend until you get the thick cold foam that you desire. It makes no great difference if you are using a hand blender or a regular automatic blender.

How To Make Cold Foam At Home Without A Frother
Make Cold Foam With A French Press

Frequently Asked Questions About How To Make Cold Foam

Cold foam is made using 2% milk, heavy cream and vanilla syrup (optional) and a bladeless blender. For best results, keep your ingredients as cold as you can prior to using them and chill your equipment. This is what produces a better quality, thicker foam and a greater abundance.

The cold foam at Starbucks is made of heavy cream, 2% milk and vanilla syrup (optional). It is then whipped in a bladeless cold foam blender. The delicious foamed milk sits on top of your coffee and then drizzles and cascades down into it, leaving you with a beautiful drink that has an amazing taste and texture.

Yes, you can use a milk frother to make cold foam. It does not matter if it is a handheld milk frother, an automatic milk frother or a battery operated milk frother wand. You can even use your blender.

Yes, you can use any kind of creamer to make a high quality cold foam. 2% milk tends to get the best results, but is not essential as I have seen great results with nonfat milk and full fat milk also. Ordinary milk is as good as a fancy expensive brand.

Making cold milk without a frother is easy. You can use a regular blender and blend for a couple of minutes until you get a good thick cold foam. You can also use your French press or cocktail shaker. For best results freeze your equipment, for some reason when they are ice-cold you get better quality foam in abundance.

With your French press, fill it about 1/3 full and pump the plunger until you get foam. With your cocktail shaker, put your milk inside it and shake like crazy for a minute or two.

Yes, a hand blender produces good quality cold foam as long as you blend for long enough and only want to make a small amount of cold foam.

How Do You Make Cold Foam At Home?

Cold foam is made by aerating your milk using a special frothing device, a French press, a hand pump milk frother, shaking an ice-cold mason jar or a blender.

What Is Starbucks Cold Foam Made With?

Starbucks cold foam is made with low fat milk and heavy cream in equal amounts and is used in their cold brew cold drinks and more.

Final Thoughts – How To Make Cold Foam

Now you know exactly how to make cold foam in the comfort of your own home with our rather delicious recipe and techniques to get the magical fluffy foam that you can drizzle on your cold brew, iced coffee and other tasty coffee drinks. 

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Derek Marshall, a certified barista by the Specialty Coffee Association possesses over two decades of experience in specialty coffee shops. He holds professional certifications for coffee brewing and barista skills. Derek is also an author with authoritative books covering various coffee topics including specialty coffee, sustainability and coffee, coffee brewing, coffee recipes, coffee cocktails and books focusing on Brazilian coffee, Vietnamese coffee, Indonesian coffee and Malaysian coffee. As a barista for over two decades, Derek Marshall has worked in specialty coffee shops across the United Kingdom, Spain, Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Indonesia, and Vietnam. His expertise extends to the distinct coffee cultures, specialty beverages, and brewing techniques of each nation. Functioning as a coffee consultant, Derek charges US$50 per hour. To learn more about Derek Marshall and Latte Love Brew, visit his About Me Page. For coffee inquiries, contact him at +34-639-410-375 or, mentioning your name and location

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