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How to make Caramel Coffee with Homemade Caramel Milk

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Creamy, smooth, and endlessly sippable caramel coffee is the ideal blend of candied and caffeinated flavors! Allow yourself to melt into deliciousness with this decadent Caramel Coffee with Homemade Caramel Milk!

Caramel and coffee go together like any iconic duo; each brings a little something special, but together, they really shine! That is why you have to try this delightful caramel coffee confection! Here is what you will love about this easy Caramel Coffee with Homemade Caramel Milk:

  • Cravable Caramel Flavor – You will literally daydream about the smooth, sugary, and perfectly sweet flavor of this creamy caramel coffee! It is a balanced sip of coffee and caramel flavors!
  • Yummy Options – The homemade caramel milk also works well in an iced caramel latte or for spicing up your favorite cup of tea!
  • Better at Home – There is nothing like the pride that comes with making things from scratch, and everything in this cup, down to the caramel, is homemade! Once you’ve hand-crafted this delicious drink, you’ll forget all about the cafe in town, and your kitchen will become your new favorite local cafe!
  • No Special Tricks – You do not need to be a pro barista to make this beverage. The only thing you need to make perfectly delicious coffee at home is a little time, a stovetop, and this recipe!

Ingredients you need

Only three ingredients are required for making a delicious caramel coffee with homemade caramel milk.

Whole Milk – Full-fat or whole milk is the perfect choice of dairy for this creamy coffee treat. You will use it to craft lush caramel milk for a nice caramelly milk foam.

Whole milk has a great balance of silky smooth texture and rich milky flavor. However, if you need a lactose-free or non-dairy alternative, both options are great substitutes for this ingredient. If you do choose to use non-dairy milk, seek out a ‘barista-quality’ labeled product. This variety of non-dairy milk has extra plant-based fat, which makes the milk thick and easy to foam.

Granulated Sugar – White sugar is used in this recipe to make the luscious caramel milk. This pantry staple turns into golden brown caramel when heated so it is a must-have for this yummy drink!

Espresso – The robust and delicious flavor of espresso is just the thing to balance the creamy sweetness of the caramel milk. Espresso is a style of brewing coffee where very hot water is forced through very finely ground beans at very high pressure. The end result is a highly concentrated dose of ultra-intense coffee flavor!

Since espresso is really a method and not a bean, you can pick any type of coffee beans that you like. Some roasters will craft blends that they feel taste especially nice when brewed with this method, but you can experiment with the taste of single-origin espresso, blended espresso, or even decaf espresso!

Chocolate Sprinkles – Nothing goes with caramel like chocolate so finish this candied coffee with a fun sprinkle of chocolate! Use chocolate jimmies, shavings, or miniature chocolate chips to bring a little cocoa flavor to this iconic caramel coffee!

Hot Caramel Coffee Step-by-step

Distribute the sugar in the saucepan.
Distribute the sugar in the saucepan.
Slowly caramelize the granulated sugar at a low temperature until it is liquified.
Slowly caramelize the granulated sugar at a low temperature.
Add the milk to the liquified sugar.
Add the milk to the liquified sugar.
Whisk the caramel and the milk until well combined.
Whisk the caramel and the milk until well combined.
Pour the coffee into the serving glass.
Pour the coffee into the serving glass.
Pour the caramel milk into the coffee.
Pour the caramel milk into the coffee.
Froth the milk with a milk frother.
Froth the milk with a milk frother.
Add the frothed milk on top of the caramel coffee.
Add the frothed milk on top of the caramel coffee.
Gorgeous, amber colored caramel coffee with homemade caramel milk filled in glass mug and placed on dark ground.

How To Make Hot Caramel Coffee From Scratch

  • Step One: Spread the granulated sugar evenly in a medium pan. Heat the sugar over low heat until it is liquified. Be careful not to burn the sugar while caramelizing! Keep the heat low and slow for the perfect caramel texture and flavor. It’s also important not to stir too often because stirring can cause lumps.
  • Step Two: Separately, heat the milk in the microwave.
  • Step Three: Once the sugar has become liquid caramel, pour in the warm milk and stir to combine. Set the caramel milk aside.
  • Step Four: Brew the espresso, pour it into serving glasses, and add the caramel milk.
  • Step Five: Froth the milk and pour it over the espresso.
  • Step Six: Sprinkle with chocolate chips and enjoy!

Barista Tips

  • The caramel for this coffee can be tricky to nail. It requires low and slow heat to avoid burning and cannot be stirred too often, or it will become lumpy! However, do not worry if you make it twice and the caramel color ranges from light to darker. A little color variation is okay as long as the yummy caramel does not become burnt!
  • When brewing coffee, always use filtered water. Filtered water does not calcify the coffee equipment, which gives your coffee a better flavor and extends the utility of your brewing equipment.
  • The ideal milk temperature for frothing is 131°F to 149°F (55°C to 65°C). You can use a probe thermometer to double-check your temperature before attempting to steam.


Coffee Maker – There are several ways to make espresso at home and one really great way to have fun with coffee at home is playing with these different styles. Become a brewmaster by trying a few different brew methods at home, like Aeropress, Moka Pot, French Press, or standard drip. Use whichever method works best for your home kitchen to make the coffee for this drink!

Milk Frother – A milk frother is designed to whip up warm milk until it becomes nice and foamy. These tiny tools range from about $5 to $15, so they are a very affordable home bar buy!

Frequently Asked Questions About Hot Caramel Coffee

Can I Make This Dairy-Free?

Yes! You can trade the whole milk in this recipe for lactose-free or dairy-free milk as needed.
However, if you’re cutting the dairy because of a vegan diet, the caramel is made from granulated sugar, which is sometimes refined with bone char and, therefore, is not vegan. Brown sugar or erythritol (a sugar-free sweetener) would make fine vegan swaps for the sugar in this recipe it not just dairy-free but vegan-friendly.

Do I Need an Espresso Machine for This Coffee?

No! You absolutely do not need a fancy countertop espresso machine for this drink. While a homemade espresso machine might be the dream for some, there are multiple ways to get this satisfying brew.
The recipe calls for espresso-style coffee, but you can make this delicious sip without making a big culinary investment. Try brewing the espresso using an Aeropress, Moka Pot, or even a drip brewer to get a sensational coffee flavor without spending a ton on equipment.

More Recipes and Tips You Might Enjoy:

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Gorgeous, amber colored caramel coffee with homemade caramel milk filled in glass mug and placed on dark ground.

Caramel Coffee with Homemade Caramel Milk

Learn how to make caramel coffee with a two ingredient homemade caramel milk using this step-by-step recipe. Treat yourself to a rich and flavorful cup of caramel goodness today.
5 from 29 votes
Print Pin Rate Save Recipe
Course: Coffee, Coffee with milk, Hot beverage
Cuisine: Global cuisine
Keyword: caramel, Caramel Coffee, caramel coffee recipe, caramel milk, homemade caramel milk
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2 Servings
Calories: 133kcal



  • 1 cup Whole milk can be replaced with plant-based milk
  • ¼ cup Granulated sugar
  • 2 Espresso
  • ½ cup Whole milk for frothing or plant-based
  • Chocolate sprinkles for garnish


Homemade Caramel Milk

  • Take a pan and spread ¼ cup Granulated sugar evenly in it.
    ¼ cup Granulated sugar
  • Slowly caramelize the granulated sugar at a low temperature until it is liquified.
  • Be careful not to burn the sugar while caramelizing. Do it slowly, at a low to medium temperature.
  • Heat 1 cup Whole milk in the microwave using a microwave-safe container or separately on the stove in a saucepan.
    1 cup Whole milk
  • Once the caramel is liquid, pour in the warm milk. Stir to combine the milk with the caramelized sugar.
  • Set aside when well combined.

Caramel Coffee

  • Brew 2 Espresso into a metal pitcher (or directly into your serving glasses).
    2 Espresso
  • Pour the coffee into the serving glasses.
  • Add the caramel milk to both coffees.
  • Froth ½ cup Whole milk for frothing with a milk frother and distribute the foamed milk evenly onto both caramel coffees.
    ½ cup Whole milk for frothing
  • Sprinkle with Chocolate sprinkles and serve.
    Chocolate sprinkles


Serving: 1Serving | Calories: 133kcal | Carbohydrates: 28g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 7mg | Sodium: 29mg | Potassium: 93mg | Sugar: 28g | Vitamin A: 99IU | Calcium: 79mg | Iron: 0.01mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Food Safety

  • Don’t leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
  • Never leave cooking food and beverages unattended
  • Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove

See more guidelines at USDA.gov.

By on September 14th, 2023
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About Nora

Nora is a full-blown coffee addict, who loves to make and write about everything that is coffee related. She is currently training to be a barista and loves sharing her knowledge.

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