An Americano coffee, which is also known as Caffe Americano, is a popular drink, especially in North America. The Americano coffee originated in Europe and was created by American soldiers during World War II. Here is a short story of Americano coffee’s origin.
During World War II, American soldiers were stationed in Italy, whereby they drank espresso, which is the Italian strong coffee. For these soldiers, the espresso coffee was tasty but too strong for them.
So, in search of a drink that would replicate the coffee they used to drink back in the United States, they decided to add water to the espresso coffee to dilute it.
They then brought the diluted espresso coffee back to America, where they began to create the drink. The Americanized espresso gained popularity across the world and thus the name Americano.
The Americano coffee drink is now a staple drink among many people and is on almost every coffee menu in coffee shops across the world.
Starbucks coffee company offers Americano coffee in tall, grande, and venti drink sizes. However, unlike macchiato, cappuccino, and a cafe latte, you don’t need milk for an Americano coffee. The drink is arguably among the most popular coffee drinks that lack milk on the planet.
The drink has close flavor notes and as much volume as a drip coffee. The top ingredient of Americano coffee is espresso.
In addition, Americano drinks tend to have richer tastes similar to espresso, as well as fuller bodies, since you use water instead of milk to dilute your espresso. The use of milk tends to mask the espressos’ bold flavor.
An Americano is also referred to as Campari, club soda, and sweet vermouth cocktail. However, it is rare for a person to confuse these two drinks when placing an Americano order.
For all coffee snobs, nothing beats Americano coffee, plus it will be a great deal for you. You ought to try it if you haven’t yet. The best part of it is that you don’t have to wait at the coffee shop for the barista to make one for you. The drink is easy to make while at home. Read on!
As mentioned earlier, espresso is the basis of Americano coffee. You can make your Americano coffee with a single espresso shot, double shots, or triple espresso shots, depending on the caffeine concentration you want for your drink. Some prefer a strong espresso version, while others prefer a milder espresso version.
The most popular way to make Americano coffee is by mixing a double shot with hot water. You don’t need barista experience to make Americano coffee.
However, you need to get the steps right. In this article, we will guide you on how to prepare an Americano coffee and discuss everything else you need to know about the preparation of the espresso drink. Let’s begin!
How to Make Americano Coffee
Here is an Americano recipe you can use at the comfort of your home:
First, the ingredients required to make your Americano coffee at home are
- High-quality espresso coffee beans – Selecting the right choice of beans is the first step to making any good cup of coffee. Use espresso beans for your Americano coffee. Using any other type of coffee bean will not give you the desired results.
- Hot water – you can use hot water or almost boiling water. Other water temperatures will not give you the desired results.
Other than that, you’re required to have the following equipment:
- An espresso maker
- A kitchen scale – A scale plays a huge role when it comes to accuracy, which is a necessity when making your Americano coffee.
- A tamper – Tamping your espresso grounds is important for all espresso drinks.
- A grinder – Grinding the espresso beans to the right grind size is necessary for a good quality Americano brew.
Here is a step-by-step guide you can follow to make your Americano homemade coffee drink:
First, we need to make our espresso drink since it is the basis of our Americano coffee.
How to Make Espresso Coffee
Here are ways to make your espresso coffee at home:
1. Warm Your Espresso Machine
Turn your espresso machine on to warm up. You’ll need to use it while warm and this is the best point to warm it up.
2. Measure the Required Coffee Beans
Use your kitchen scale to measure the number of coffee beans you’ll require. This will depend on your espresso taste, the size of your espresso machine, and caffeine level preferences.
The amount of beans needed for a double shot is between 14 to 18 grams. A triple shot requires 21 grams of beans. A single shot may not be strong enough for making an Americano coffee drink, especially if you’re an Americano fan.
3. Grind the Coffee Beans
Take the measured amount of beans and add them to the coffee grinder. Grind them finely and on a low setting on your espresso machine.
Make sure you grind them finely until you get a powdery consistency. Grinding them finely helps you get the rich flavor that you want. Using a coffee grinder will give you the best results.
4. Tamp Your Ground Coffee
Some machines automatically tamp your coffee grounds. However, if your espresso machine doesn’t do that for you, you can go the old school way.
Fill the ground coffee into your clean and dry portafilter and tamp the coffee grounds evenly without pushing one side harder than the other.
Tamping your beans tightly in the filtering basket will allow even distribution of coffee in the basket of the espresso machine, which finally results in a perfect espresso shot. When you tamp, you get to compress the grinds allowing even extraction of flavor from the coffee beans.
5. Put the Poltafilter in an Espresso Machine
The first step to making your espresso is adding the filled portafilter to the machine, then placing your coffee mug or latte mug underneath to collect the espresso.
You can also preheat the coffee or latte mug by filling it with water, then warming the water in a microwave. However, this step is optional.
6. Make Espresso
After you’ve put the portafilter and coffee mug in place, turn on your machine and wait for your espresso coffee. The amount of time this process will take depends on your machine model.
Make sure to follow the instructions in your manual. You don’t want your coffee to taste sour. The sour taste is an indication that you’ve over-extracted, while a watery taste is an indication that you’ve under-extracted the beans.
At this point, we assume your espresso is ready. Now let’s jump into making Americano.
How to Make Cafe Americano
Here are some tips you can use to make your Americano coffee drink:
- For the water to espresso ratio, use the 2:1 ratio. That’s two water parts to one espresso part.
- For a quality cup of Americano beverage, use filtered water and not tap water. Water plays a huge role in the coffee’s quality, just like the ratios.
1. Heat Your Water
To make Americano, you’ll need hot water. As mentioned earlier, the amount of water that you’ll need for your Americano is double the amount of the espresso that you used.
However, the amount of water depends on how you prefer your Americano coffee, the strength of the espresso coffee you’ve made, and your coffee mug size.
Your water temperature should be approximately 185 degrees Fahrenheit. Too much hot water will take time to cool, and this interferes with your coffee flavor.
Too cold coffee will cool quickly too, and it interferes with the flavor by lowering the espresso quality a bit. You can use your steam boiler tap or kettle to get your water to the required temperature.
2. Mix Your Espresso and Your Water
When it comes to mixing espresso and water, here is a tip you can use for a perfect Americano drink: add your espresso to your hot water and not vice versa.
This will ensure that you retain the foam in your espresso and the crema (the top layer formed on espresso coffee drinks as a result of the pressure exerted during the extraction process).
It also prevents you from burning the coffee. Doing this also allows the blend to be more even, which creates a smoother mixture. In addition, pour the espresso coffee slowly to avoid rushing the process.
3. Enjoy Your Americano
Now you have your Americano coffee. It’s your choice to either add some sweeteners and toppings or not. You can sprinkle some cinnamon on the coffee, add some milk and sugar, add some honey, add some whipped cream, add some vanilla or just leave it plain.
This all depends on your Americano coffee taste preference. Despite how you do it, make sure you enjoy your first homemade Americano coffee.
Not to mention, as with any espresso-based drink, you can experiment with different water to espresso proportions or simply tweak the coffee recipes until you get what you need. Moreover, customize your Americano coffee to also suit your preference.
Usually, standard Americano coffees are strictly served as black coffee – no toppings and no flavorings. However, for coffee lovers, black coffee can be boring, so, feel free to customize your Americano drink to your personalization.
Now that you have enjoyed your Americano coffee, it’s time to try out something new.
Americanos Coffee Variations
If you’re not a basic coffee fan, you can try the available Americano variations. They include:
- White Americano
- Iced Americano
- Fat Americano
- Red eye Americano
A white Americano is a type of Americano drink that isn’t topped to the brim. This gives you room to add extras such as a splash of milk at the end of your recipe. For a hot Americano, add hot milk and cold milk for iced white Americano.
You can choose to ice up your Americano coffee, which is a quick process. So, how do you make your American iced coffee? The process is just a little bit different from making your Americano coffee since you’ll use some ice and cold water instead of using hot water.
Here are the things you require to make your Iced Americano coffee :
- Espresso coffee
- A glass or a container
- Put some ice cubes in your glass or container, then pour some cold water over the ice cubes until the coffee mug is half-full.
- Take the espresso that you’ve already made using the process of making your espresso coffee. Pour the espresso into the glass or container with the ice cubes. The espresso will flow a bit, so at this point, you can snap an Instagram and Facebook photo.
- Enjoy your iced Americano coffee.
You’ve probably heard of the fat Americano. For this drink, you use Coca Cola as a water substitute. In addition, you’re not limited to regular coffee only. You can use Pepsi and diet coke if these are your preference.
Not to mention, the order that you use to make your Americano variations is equally important. For fat Americano, first, cool your glass, then add some ice cubes. Next, pour your soda into the glass with ice cubes, then add your espresso coffee.
Red Eye Americano
If you love an extra caffeine shot to help you stay awake, Red Eye Americano is a perfect choice for you. To make the Red Eye Americano coffee variation, all you need is to switch your hot water for drip coffee.
Does Americano Coffee Contain Caffeine?
Yes. Americano coffee contains caffeine. However, the caffeine concentration depends on the number of shots you’ve used in your Americano drink. Basically, traditional Americano coffee contains less caffeine than your regular cup of coffee.
For example, an 8-ounce Americano coffee drink contains 75mg of caffeine, while an 8-ounce drip coffee contains 185mg of caffeine concentration. In addition, an Americano is served in the same drink size as regular coffee – between 12 to 20 ounces.
It’s that easy. Let’s now get to the advantages of Americano coffee
- It helps you burn your fats.
- Americano coffee helps improve your brain functioning.
- Americano coffee helps prevent some diseases like Parkinson’s, liver cancer, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s.
- Coffee alleviates your mood.
- Coffee boosts your energy levels.
- It also helps in reducing stress levels.
Frequently Asked Questions about Americano Coffee
1. What are the differences between regular and Americano coffee?
First, Americano coffee is made using espresso coffee, hence it falls under the espresso-based drinks category, while regular coffee is made without espresso. Therefore, Americano coffee tastes different from regular coffee.
The espresso used to make Americano coffee gives the coffee espresso flavor notes, as well as a rich and full taste compared to regular coffee. In addition, an Americano may have a crema as a result of espresso used, while regular coffee lacks a crema.
2. Can you make your espresso without an espresso machine?
This is a common question, since high-quality espresso machines are not cheap either. The answer is yes. You can make your espresso without an espresso machine. However, the required pressure for a good espresso shot may not be there.
In this case, the easiest and closest method to the espresso machine is to use an AeroPress or Nespresso machine, since it uses pressure just like the espresso machine to extract flavor from the espresso grounds. Other methods that you can use to do this include:
- Use of a French press.
- Use of a Moka pot
- Use of an espresso hand gadget.
- Use of a lever machine.
3. What is the difference between iced coffee and Americano iced coffee?
Americano iced coffee is typically made just like Americano coffee but with cold water instead of hot. You can use a water to espresso ratio of 1.5 to 1, then pour your espresso into cold water and add some ice. Basically, you should drink Americano iced coffee without adding milk or sugar.
On the other hand, iced coffee has different variations depending on your style. For example, you can opt to serve your brewed coffee over ice, which makes it iced coffee. In addition, you can brew your coffee cold, which also makes it iced coffee. In short, iced coffee is a coffee drink that is served cold.
4. What is a White Americano?
A white Americano refers to a coffee drink that isn’t topped to the brim. The space left in the coffee cup gives you room to add milk, sugar, or whatever thing you want to add to your coffee.
As you’ve seen, you can make an easy Americano coffee in your kitchen. However, if you prefer to order your drink, it is available in most of the coffee shops and even if it’s off the menu list, you’ll find that most baristas know how to prepare it.
Americano coffee is a good choice, especially for your morning routine, since a cup of the drink will provide you with the energy you need to kickstart your day. In addition, there are tons of variations. The different variations give room for everyone to enjoy Americano coffee.