Flat white vs Latte What’s The Difference

If we go to any coffee shop you will find flat whites and lattes. Coffee drinkers love a latte, in the same way, they also love flat white coffee while both have their own coffee lovers.

Flat white vs Latte 

Flat white vs latte is always a tough comparison because of the similarities they have. Flat whites and lattes or espresso drinks, and even though they have the same characteristics, they are distinct from each other if we dig deep.

Below we are comparing both drinks in different ways to provide you with a more insightful comparison.

A shot of espresso with two cups of steamed milk contains 120 calories and 7gm of fat. Using skim milk will reduce the calories to 70 calories and almost no fat

A shot of espresso with two cups of frothed milk. It has a somewhat lower nutritional content compared to flat whites, with 103 calories and 7 gm of fat. Just 80 calories and no fat with skim milk.

What is a Flat White? 

Flat white is a mix of espresso and milk. This is served in two ways with little foam or very little foam, where the foam is very flat. That’s why it’s called a flat white. We can say it is a double shot of espresso topped up with milk. Those who love specialty coffee can go for this.


In fact, Flat White originated in Australia in the 1980s.In 1984 a Sydney newspaper stated that cafe lattes were flat whites from 1985 at Moore espresso bar in 1985, and a person named Alan Preston added this coffee drink to his menu permanently.

Between the 1960s and 1970s Sydney cafes offered flare white as white coffee in their coffee houses.

Whereas, lattes originated from European countries and it is one of the famous drinks from. 

In northern Europe, lattes are prepared with milk and espresso. In France, lattes are prepared with espresso and steamed milk.

Espresso Shots

The foam is rarely dry and is usually velvety, with a few bubbles of foam on top, a small lot with a little milk and you use a double shot of espresso.

Both are espresso based drinks and the number of espresso shots in flat white is more than lattes, even in small sizes also.

Flat White is available in various sizes including small to large size. Generally, it has two shots of espresso but in large 20 oz cup sizes and 4 espresso shots.

 Whereas in latte it takes 2 espresso shots to pull this size of flat white.

SizeShots of Espresso Flat WhiteShots by Espresso Latte
Short 21


Foam is an important thing in every coffee drink without foam we can not expect a good espresso drink.

Both drinks are served in ceramic cups with steamed milk, but the major difference is that the latte is topped with a thick layer of foamed milk which is about 20mm. Flat white is topped with 1mm of thin layered milk foam. If it is with no foam then it is known as flat white. Both drinks have similar ingredients used to brew coffee.

Taste that Matters

The flat white tastes like strong coffee, because of more concentrated coffee than milk. Where, like lattes, it’s a milk-based drink with more milk involved and fewer espresso shots than flat whites.

Milk and Types

Why are we comparing these two drinks? Milk is the primary ingredient used in both drinks.

The traditional way to make flat white is by using whole milk. On the other hand, Latte, by comparison, is usually made with skimmed milk

This type of milk is found in every store. The percentage of fat contained in this milk is 2% and low fat is 1. 

Whole milk contains fat because it comes directly from the cow before processing with a fat content of 3 to 4%. Those who are on a diet or looking to cut down some calories can go with skimmed milk.

The main advantage of skimmed milk over non skimmed milk is fat free. The skimmed milk contains 0.3 percent fat and 70 calories.


The caffeine content in flat white is more than a latte and varies from cafe to cafe it all depends on the quantity and quality of the coffee. 

Below is the table for caffeine levels in flat whites and lattes

Beverage Small/MediumLarge
Flat White120 mg195 mg
Latte80 mg120mg

Is flat white healthy? There is no doubt that a flat white is healthy to drink. 

Generally, we can take 400gm of caffeine per day. When you drink flat white coffee. The caffeine content available is 120gm this is far below the daily limit. The caffeine content is higher compared to a latte but not too much higher to spoil the health drinking 2 to 3 cups a day can be advisable.

This is much the same as other espresso drinks. Whatever the benefits you will get just drinking flat white coffee you will get the same benefits.


Flat white is a suitable coffee drink for those who prefer to drink strong coffee. For espresso drinkers who want to drink strong espresso coffee, this can be a good choice and strongly recommended

The flat white is prepared with highly concentrated espresso coffee that dominates the milk flavors and tastes like strong coffee. This is a combination of steamed milk and foam. 


According to Starbucks nutrition facts 

Every 16 oz serving size of flat white has 170 gm of calories from this, calories obtained from fat are 80 gm and total carbohydrates are 18gm that is 7% of the total nutrients available in flat white.

Whereas in a latte, the available calories are 190gm(calories obtained from fat  100gm) and the fat content is 7gm. On the other hand, carbohydrates are 18gm.

The sugar content is just  1 gm of difference, the flat white sugar quantity is 18 gm and 17 gm in latte


So, coffee beans are roasted and ground to produce espresso, which is then mixed with hot water. This produces an aromatic mixture that you can enjoy in a variety of ways including a latte or a flat white. But what’s better? Which produces the fewer calories? Well, let’s take a closer look at these drinks and see just how they measure up.

When we look at the nutritional value, we have to look at calories in both the drinks. Here we compare flat white and a latte for nutritional value to choose the best one.

All values are based on a small serving size of 1 cup(244 g).

Below is a chart of flat white and latte Starbucks calories

SizeFlat WhiteLatte
Short (8 oz)110 g100 g
Tall (12 oz)170 g150 g
Grande (16 oz)220 g190 g
Venti (20 oz)290 g250 g

Espresso Shots

Below is a chart of flat white and latte Starbucks espresso shots

SizeShots of Espresso Flat WhiteShots by Espresso Latte
Short (8 oz)21
Tall (12 oz)21
Grande (16 oz)32
Venti (20 oz)42


Below is a chart of flat white and latte Starbucks caffeine content

SizeFlat WhiteLatte
Short (8 oz)130 mg75 mg
Tall (12 oz)130 mg75 mg
Grande (16 oz)195 mg150 mg
Venti (20 oz)195 mg150 mg

Final Thought: Both drinks are made with espresso and milk, so we can’t assume what people love. What I would suggest to everybody is to try both the drinks before coming to a decision about which drink you can continue.