Whenever you hear the name Americano, you probably think of a coffee that needs an experienced barista to make. You might think that it’s some sort of complicated espresso variation way out of your league.
Keep reading to see how to make an Americano at home.
When it comes to coffee drinkers, you have those who always go to coffee shops since they know what they’re doing, while others like brewing their coffees, including the Americano.
Today’s article will show you how to make an Americano at home with just a few simple steps.
Table of Contents
- What is an Americano?
- How to make an Americano at home
- How to make an Americano without an espresso machine
- Closing thoughts
What Is an Americano?
An Americano is a shot of espresso diluted with hot water. This results in a coffee with less caffeine than a regular espresso but more than a cup of drip coffee.
The drink got its name during World War II when American soldiers in Italy would order their espressos diluted with hot water to resemble the coffee back home.
Nowadays, the Americano has become one of the most popular coffee drinks worldwide and can be found on the menu of almost every coffee shop. It has the same health benefits as regular coffee.
Types of Americano Coffee
You can make an Americano in three ways, each having a unique taste. However, unlike other coffee variations, the only difference between these three types is in the espresso-to-water ratio:
- Little Buddy (Italiano Americano) – it’s the smallest type of Americano and closest to espresso as far as taste is concerned. It has equal parts espresso and water.
- Long Black Americano – it has a 1:2 ratio of espresso and water, which means a doubled amount of water for each espresso shot.
- Iced Americano – it’s a summertime favorite since it’s made with ice. It’s made with a 1:4 ratio of espresso and water to give it a refreshing and mellow taste, although most water comes in the form of ice.
How to Make an Americano at Home
You can use an espresso machine or a Moka pot to make an Americano. If you want to save time, it’s possible to prepare the coffee the night before and dilute it with hot water when you’re ready to drink it.
1. Gather Your Supplies
- Fresh coffee beans, store-bought ground coffee, or K-cups
- Espresso machine
- Kitchen scale
- Burr grinder
- Coffee mug
- Coffee cup
- Hot water
- A tamper
2. Prepare the Coffee and Espresso Machine
- Turn on the espresso machine and let it heat up for 5 to 15 minutes.
- Use the kitchen scale to measure 6-8 g for an espresso shot, 12-16 g for a double-shot, or 18-24 g for a triple-shot.
- Grind the beans to the lowest setting possible; they should have a fine, almost powdery grind.
- Measure the coffee grounds again as per the instructions above
Note: While most espresso machines can handle enough coffee grounds for a double shot, not all of them can handle the amount needed for a triple shot, so make sure to check ahead of time.
3. Pull the Espresso Shots
- Check if the espresso machine has heated properly.
- Remove the portafilter.
- Add the coffee grounds and gently tamp them.
- Pull your shot(s) of espresso into your coffee cup.
4. Add Water
Now that your espresso is ready, it’s time to turn it into an Americano by adding water. Please note that the size of a standard espresso shot depends on your espresso machine’s settings. But it usually ranges from 1 to 1.25 oz (29 and 37 ml).
So, depending on the Americano type you prefer, add the following amounts of water:
- Little Buddy (Italiano Americano) – 1 to 1.25 oz (29 to 37 ml) of hot water
- Long Black Americano – 2 to 2.5 oz (58 to 74 ml) of hot water
- Iced Americano – 4 to 5 oz (116 to 148 ml) of water and/or ice
Note: Always add espresso on top of the water – NOT the other way around. Here’s why:
- Could scald the espresso, ruining its consistency and taste.
- Tempers the Americano, allowing for a much smoother mix.
- Keeps the espresso’s crema intact since it floats.
How to Make an Americano without an Espresso Machine
Technically speaking, you can’t make an Americano without an espresso, which means that you absolutely need an espresso maker.
But you can still obtain similar results without investing in this machine by learning how to make espresso without an espresso machine:
1. Using a French Press
French press coffee is one of the strongest and most flavorful coffees you can make at home without an espresso machine: brew a batch of coffee using a French Press, then dilute it with water.
2. Using a Moka Pot
A Moka pot is a type of stovetop coffee maker designed to brew coffee by passing boiling water pressurized by steam through ground coffee. To create an Americano, you have to make Moka coffee and add water.
3. Using an AeroPress
Considered a manual espresso machine, the AeroPress operates by putting finely ground coffee into contact with pressurized water: brew AeroPress coffee and add water or ice.
How to Make an Americano at Home (FAQ)
Discover more useful information about making an Americano at home:
How do you make a homemade Americano?
Brew espresso and dilute it with hot or cold water and ice to make an iced Americano.
Is an Americano just water and espresso?
Yes, an Americano is simply espresso diluted with hot water. The original recipe doesn’t require milk or syrup since it would create a diluted latte.
How do you make an Americano without an espresso machine?
Make French press, Moka, or AeroPress coffee, and then dilute it with hot water or water with ice.
How is an Americano different from regular coffee?
Although Americano and regular coffee use coffee grounds and lots of water, the Americano has a more distinctive flavor, thanks to espresso,
Is black coffee the same as Americano?
The answer is both yes and no. Yes, because black coffee and an Americano contain nothing more than coffee and water. No, because an Americano is an espresso-based drink, while black coffee can be any kind of coffee served without milk and sugar.
How to Make an Americano at Home (Closing Thoughts)
We hope this article has given you all the information that you need to know about making an Americano at home without an espresso machine.
If you found it helpful, please share it with your friends and family so they can enjoy a delicious cup of Americano as well. Thanks for reading!