Can You Add Creamer to Espresso? (The Surprising Answer)

can you add creamer to espresso
I think we have been in the position where we pull a nice shot of espresso and just fancy adding something like frothed milk to make a latte.
But have you ever wondered if you can add coffee creamers to espresso instead of milk?
Well, don’t worry you’re not crazy, many people add coffee creamer to coffee so it only makes sense that it can be added to espresso as a milk substitute, right?
Let’s find out…
So, can you add creamer to espresso? Creamer can be added to espresso. 2-3 tablespoons of powdered creamer or 2-3 oz liquid creamer can be added to espresso as a substitute for milk and also to change the flavor profile of the espresso.
Ok, so now you know that you can add coffee creamers to espresso but does that mean you are ready to head off to your espresso machine armed with a tub of creamer?
Not so fast, there are a few more things that we need to get to the bottom of first, such as…
  • Is it better to use powdered or liquid creamer?
  • Can you froth the coffee creamer?
  • And how exactly do you make espresso with creamer?
Well, read on to get all of these questions answered and see actual examples of espresso with coffee creamer that we made!

Table of Contents

Can You Add Creamer to Espresso? (More Info)

So, as we mentioned above, you can add coffee creamer to espresso and even other coffee drinks. This can be a good idea if you are looking for something that resembles a latte but you don’t have any milk available.
It can also be a way to add interesting flavors to your espresso as you can add coffee creamer such as ‘coffee mate’ in many different flavors such as:
  • Vanilla
  • Caramel
  • Hazelnut
  • Salted caramel
  • Plus many more
Adding coffee creamer to espresso will provide a unique taste and flavor profile and it will certainly be different from a latte or any other steamed milk or added cream variation even though the creamer serves the same purpose as the milk. It’s also worth noting that you can purchase coffee creamer that is lactose-free and even dairy-free.
For this reason, it’s important not to expect an exact replica of these drinks, but instead, to appreciate it for what it is – an enjoyable and creative espresso variation (that might just be a live-saver if you run out of milk)

Should I Add Liquid Or Powdered Creamer to My Espresso?

I have created espresso with coffee creamer using both a powder-based and liquid creamer (as you will see below) and I can honestly say that I would always opt for the liquid creamer over the powdered one.
The main difference is that the liquid creamer is much easier to use and you don’t have to dissolve it as you do with the powder-based version.
You can also use frothers to froth the liquid creamer which creates a really interesting texture and takes the drink up a level in my opinion.

How Much Creamer Should You Add to Espresso?

I’ve found that hitting the right balance between espresso and creamer is the trick to ensuring this is a drink you will enjoy and one you will want to make again and again.
I would recommend using the following amount of creamer for your espresso with coffee creamer:
Creamer TypeAmount
Powdered Creamer2-3 Tablespoons
Liquid Creamer2-3 oz

What Are The Advantages Of Using Creamer In Espresso?

There are obviously lots of world-renowned and long-established drinks in coffee shops that add different combinations of steamed milk, cream, or whipped cream to a base of espresso such as a latte, cappuccino, Irish coffee, macchiato, and mocha to name but a few.
However, coffee creamer is something that coffee lovers can add to your espresso and it can certainly have its place when making coffee-based drinks with espresso at home.
The advantages of using creamer are:
  • Easily stored
  • Long shelf life
  • Easy to make
  • Variety of flavors
The first one that stands out to me is the long shelf life as you can store the creamer in the cupboard and use it months later if you don’t have any milk or simply fancy a change.
The variety of flavors are also interesting as you can easily change the flavor of your coffee with hazelnut, caramel, or vanilla flavored creamer for example without having to purchase flavored coffee beans.
It doesn’t mean that you should ditch those traditional espresso-based drinks that we have all come to know and love but adding coffee creamer to your cup of coffee every now and then might just be a lifesaver on a rainy day!

What Is an Espresso With Creamer Called?

Espresso with creamer doesn’t really have an official name as it’s not really an official drink.
Adding coffee creamer to espresso (with no milk or cream) is really only something that’s done at home and not a drink you will find in your local cafe.
I’ve found the most common name for an espresso with creamer is an “espresso creamer latte”.
Even though it’s not officially a latte, I think this name suits the drink pretty well so I’m willing to roll with that.

Making an Espresso With Creamer

The following recipes/methods were used as experiments to show how creamer can be added to espresso in different ways.
They also document and show which methods are worth trying and which ones aren’t by sharing the differences in taste and practicality so you can decide which method you would rather use.
Let’s take a look at the different methods of adding creamer to espresso…

1. Making an Espresso With Creamer (Liquid)

For this method, I used salted caramel chocolate flavored creamer. There was no milk included, just espresso and creamer.
  1. Make espresso like you normally would using your espresso machine.
  2. Pour the espresso into a larger cup. This will allow for the volume of the liquid coffee creamer.
  3. Pour around 2 oz of liquid coffee creamer directly into the espresso.
  4. Stir the creamer and espresso together.
The drink actually tasted really good, however, 2 oz of creamer in this flavor is very sweet and might not be to everyone’s liking.
Using an unflavored creamer is also an option but the taste is the total opposite and is quite bland with little to no sweetness when there’s no steamed milk included.
The drink was really easy to put together, can basically be done with very little effort, and certainly don’t need to be a barista to make it.



2. Making an Espresso With Creamer (Powder)

This time, I used unflavored powder-based creamer. Again there was no milk added, just the espresso and creamer.
  1. Make an espresso using your espresso machine.
  2. Add 3 tablespoons of creamer to a cup that’s larger than an espresso cup.
  3. Pour the espresso into the same cup as the powdered creamer.
  4. Stir the espresso and the creamer together until the creamer is fully dissolved.
I actually found using powdered-based creamer a bad experience when compared to liquid coffee creamer.
This is due to the fact that the powdered creamer is difficult to stir together and dissolve in the espresso and leaves powdered residue over the cup.
You can add both the espresso and the powder-based creamer into a jar and shake them together to get around this but I think this is an extra step that you shouldn’t really have to take.
The volume of the drink is still pretty small and is almost the same size as the pulled shot of espresso so if you’re expecting something similar to a latte then you will be disappointed with this method.
The taste of using powdered, unflavored creamer is very bland and nowhere near as tasty as using milk to make a latte.
I would only recommend using powdered creamer in addition to steamed milk to make it a little more thick and creamy and not to use it on its own.



3. Making Espresso With Frothed Creamer

For this method of adding creamer to espresso, I steamed/frothed the liquid coffee creamer using the steam wand of the espresso machine I used to make the espresso.
The flavor of the liquid coffee creamer was salted caramel chocolate.
  1. Pull a shot of espresso using your espresso machine.
  2. Add the espresso to a larger cup to allow for the volume of the steamed creamer.
  3. Add 2-3 oz of liquid coffee creamer to your milk frothing jug.
  4. Froth the creamer using the steam wand or electric milk frother.
  5. Add the frothed milk to the cup containing the espresso.
This is actually my favorite way to add creamer to espresso as there was a nice layer of foam on the top. Frothing the creamer just adds to the texture of the drink and makes it so much more enjoyable.
There is obviously an extra step involved to froth the creamer but its really worth it especially if you’re using a flavored creamer.
Again, you will notice that the flavor profile is very sweet so use unflavored creamer if you are only looking for a subtle way to change the profile of your espresso.




Creamer can certainly be added to coffee and specifically espresso to create something different, that’s for sure!
I would honestly only recommend using creamer if it’s in addition to milk when making a latte to make the drink a little more creamy.
Adding only creamer to espresso with no milk to make a make-shift latte is possible but I would only do this if I had run out of milk and had no other options.
Using flavored creamer makes for a very interesting drink and is an easy way to get some exciting flavor profiles into your morning coffee without purchasing flavored beans.
I would encourage you to give it a try and see what you think as the process is straightforward and takes very few steps to make the drink, who knows it might just be your new favorite espresso-based drink!

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