How to Make a Cafe Mocha at Home

Introduction: How to Make a Cafe Mocha at Home

About: We're fun, frank and want you to make coffee you love at home. We test and review a wide array of gear. On Instuctables we will post how to get the most out of your home coffee and espresso equipment.
Explore: A Cafe Mocha is a delicious hot beverage made by combining chocolate, espresso and steamed milk. It is sometimes also called a Mocha or a Mocha Latte. It is one of the most popular espresso drinks served at coffee shops. Here are the steps to make one at home -- along with 5 chocolate ingredient variations to try. Each one offers a different chocolatey sensation.

You Will Need:
  • Home espresso machine
  • Espresso grinder
  • Tamper
  • Whole bean espresso blend coffee
  • Chocolate (variations: chocolate milk, chocolate sauce, cocoa powder, hot cocoa mix, drinking chocolate)
  • Stainless steel frothing pitcher
  • Spoon to stir
  • Your favorite mug!
  • Garnish: Whipped cream
  • Optional: Digital timer, kitchen scale, measured shot glass, and a bar towel for inevitable spills

Step 1: Step One: Prepare - Grind Espresso - Tamp It

Prepare: Before grinding your coffee to make the espresso shots, follow these tips
  • Use fresh filtered water in your machine’s reservoir.
  • Turn your machine on in advance. Depending on the size of the machine’s boiler, it takes 15-30 minutes to reach optimal internal temperatures.
  • Insert the portafilter and preheat it in the brew head as the machine warms up.
  • Preheat the shot glasses and your cup if your machine has a passive warming feature on top or by adding boiling water and letting them sit on the counter until needed.

Grind Espresso:
  • Make sure you use fresh whole bean espresso blend coffee (coffee roasted within the last 30 days is great!).
  • Grind fine for espresso (feels somewhere between powdered sugar and granulated sugar).
  • Use your grinder's timer, weigh feature or a kitchen scale to measure your dose (14-18 grams).

Tamp It: Use the tamper to evenly press the ground coffee down in the portafilter with 30 pounds of pressure. Wipe off any stray coffee grounds along the edges of the filter basket.

Step 2: Step Two: Pull Your Espresso Shots

Re-insert the filled and tamped portafilter back into the brew head. Begin your shot. If you are new to making espresso, time your extraction. It should take between 20-30 seconds to yield a 2 ounce double shot. Measured shot glasses are great to confirm this.

If you need to troubleshoot your espresso shots, check out our Instructable: How to Pull Better Espresso Shots

Step 3: Step Three: Froth Your Milk

Milk Frothing Tips: Notice the depth of the steam wand and the circular motion of the milk in the frothing pitcher. You may want to try tilting the pitcher a little to get the milk moving. This helps to heat it evenly and create a creamier (less bubbly) foam.
Grab your chosen chocolate ingredient:
Chocolate Milk: In a chilled frothing pitcher steam the chocolate milk. It will not get to a velvety microfoam consistency but it will get frothy and it will still be delicious! This produces the creamiest tasting version of a Mocha.

Chocolate Sauce: Add 1 oz Monin Dark Chocolate Sauce to the frothing pitcher, add milk and froth. This produces the sweetest tasting version of a Mocha.

Cocoa Powder: Add 2 tbsp unsweetened Hershey's cocoa powder and 2 tbsp granulated sugar to a small bowl or ramekin and add 2 Tbsp milk. Stir until it gets creamy with no lumps. Add this to a chilled frothing pitcher, then add milk and steam to your desired temperature. This produces the richest tasting version of a Mocha.

Instant Hot Cocoa Mix: Empty a packet into a chilled frothing pitcher, add milk and steam to your desired temperature. As the milk swirls and heats, the powder will get incorporated. This version is not very chocolatey since there is already a fair amount of powdered milk in the mix. But, if this is all you have in the cupboard, know that you can still make a Mocha with it!

Drinking chocolate: Add a serving of chocolate shavings to a chilled frothing pitcher, add milk and steam to your desired temperature. It is difficult at first to contain the chocolate shavings, but as it heats it will blend nicely. This produced a very bland Mocha. Experiment with adding double the serving suggestion to the milk in the frothing pitcher.

If you need additional tips on how to steam milk, check out our tutorial here.

Make sure to pass steam through the steam wand when you finish to remove any internal milk residue and wipe your steam wand with a damp towel to remove external residue. Careful, the steam wand is hot!

Step 4: Step Five: Putting the Mocha Together

Take your pre-warmed cup and add two ounces of espresso. Slowly add the steamed chocolate milk. Give it a stir. Top off with the creamy foam left in the frothing pitcher and/or whipped cream!


Be the First to Share


    • Frozen Treats Speed Challenge

      Frozen Treats Speed Challenge
    • Super-Size Speed Challenge

      Super-Size Speed Challenge
    • Backyard Contest

      Backyard Contest



    4 years ago

    easy to follow with an excellent outcome! I went with the chocolate milk form, great taste and smooth!!