Guide to Making a Flat White at Home with Your AeroPress

The art of coffee brewing has long been the domain of artisan baristas and coffee shops equipped with high-end espresso machines. However, thanks to AeroPress, making cafe-quality coffee at home has never been more accessible.

One of the most popular coffee-shop favorites is the Flat White, a drink originating from Australia and New Zealand that combines the richness of espresso with the velvety texture of steamed milk.

Although an AeroPress can’t produce traditional espresso, it can get close enough for a delicious Flat White. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do it.

What You’ll Need

  • An AeroPress
  • Freshly ground coffee
  • A milk frother or steam wand
  • A kettle for boiling water
  • A coffee mug
  • A scale (optional but recommended for precision)
  • Hot water (ideally at 185–205°F or 85–96°C)

Step 1: Measure Your Coffee

For a robust Flat White, aim for around 16-18 grams of freshly ground coffee. The grind size should be slightly finer than what you’d use for a regular drip coffee but not as fine as espresso.

Step 2: Prepare Your AeroPress

Insert a filter into the AeroPress cap and moisten it with hot water. This not only helps to eliminate the paper taste but also preheats the AeroPress chamber.

Step 3: Add Coffee

Place your AeroPress on your mug and add your measured coffee grounds to the chamber.

Step 4: Brew

Boil your water and let it cool down slightly to reach the optimal brewing temperature. Pour it over your coffee grounds to fill the AeroPress chamber. Stir gently with the AeroPress paddle for a few seconds to ensure that all grounds are saturated.

Attach the cap and plunge with steady pressure. This should yield a concentrated coffee that mimics the strength of an espresso shot.

Step 5: Measure and Heat

For a Flat White, you’ll want more coffee and less frothy milk compared to a cappuccino. Measure about 150–200 ml of milk. Heat it until it’s steaming but not boiling (about 150°F or 65°C).

Step 6: Froth

Use your milk frother or steam wand to create a microfoam. The aim is to have smaller, more uniform bubbles, which result in a velvety texture. Froth until the volume of milk increases by about a third.

Step 7: Combine Coffee and Milk

Pour the milk into your cup of concentrated AeroPress coffee. The key is to pour slowly and steadily to integrate the milk with the coffee while maintaining the microfoam on top.

Step 8: Fine-Tuning

A well-made Flat White should have a beautiful layer of microfoam on top, just enough to be noticeable but not so much that it overpowers the coffee.

If you’re feeling artistic, this is your chance to practice some latte art. But, aesthetics aside, the true mark of a great Flat White is its rich, full-bodied flavor and velvety texture.

Enjoy Your Home-Made Flat White

Once you’ve got your ratios and techniques down, making a Flat White with your AeroPress will be as easy as (coffee) pie. You’ll not only save money on café visits but also enjoy a high-quality coffee experience in the comfort of your own home.

Cheers to the perfect homemade Flat White!