How to Make Cold Foam at Home – With or Without Frother

cold brew coffee with cold foam

A cold-brewed or iced coffee drink from Starbucks is my go-to refreshment in hot weather. These drinks are often topped with cold foam to make them even more delicious.

Why not make one at home?

One of the best things is that making cold foam is easy and takes only a couple of minutes. All you need is some milk or cream but you can also add other ingredients to make your cold foam sweet and more flavorful.

In this guide, I will tell you how to make cold foam using simple equipment you can find in most homes.

What is Cold Foam?

Cold foam is a textured and stiff foam familiar from Starbucks drinks like iced mocha, cold-brewed coffees, and even iced teas. Starbucks’ makes their cold foam with non-fat milk. For some drinks they also add sweeteners and flavorings.

Actually, any iced drink in Starbucks can be ordered with cold foam, although there is an extra charge for that.

When you make cold foam at home you don’t necessarily have to use non-fat milk. If you want a creamier foam you can use anything from low-fat milk or half-and-half to heavy cream. However, nonfat milk or low-fat milk is easier to foam and produces plenty of small bubbles for a great texture.

iced coffee with cold foam

How to Make Cold Foam at Home?

There are many ways to make cold foam at home. I will give you a few options to choose from depending on what kind of equipment you have available.

But first, let’s take a quick look at the ingredients you need:

Milk

If you’re not sure what type of milk to use, I recommend starting with low-fat milk.

You can also try other options like nonfat milk, 2% fat milk, whole milk, half-and-half, or heavy cream. It all depends on how creamy you want it to be.

Optional Ingredients

You can start with making plain cold foam with just milk.

But you might want to make it sweet or experiment with various flavors. Some of the most popular ingredients to add are sugar and vanilla extract.

You can also add your favorite calorie-free sweetener or flavored syrup instead of sugar.

How to Make Cold Foam with a Milk Frother

There are many kinds of milk frothers available on the market. The most common options are attachments to coffee machines and independent milk frothers.

If you have a milk frother with a cold foam function, then you should definitely use it:

  1. Add cold milk to the frother. Don’t go over the maximum line marked in the frother.
  2. Use the cold foam function to create perfect cold foam in a matter of seconds.
  3. Pour on top of your iced coffee drink and enjoy!

Pros:

  • Makes perfect cold foam fast

Cons:

  • Good milk frothers with a cold foam option are often expensive

How to Make Cold Foam with a Handheld Frother

One of the easiest ways to make a small amount of cold foam is to use a handheld milk frother.

foaming milk with handheld frother

Here is how to do it:

  1. Pour the milk into a bowl, glass, or another container. You can also add any additional ingredients if you want to.
  2. Whisk with the handheld milk frother for about 20 to 30 seconds until you have nice and fluffy foam.

Pros:

  • Easy and fast method
  • Handheld milk frothers are very affordable

Cons:

  • Not good for making a bigger batch of cold foam

How to Make Cold Foam Without a Frother

Don’t have a milk frother? No worries, there are plenty of additional ways to make cold foam at home.

How to Make Cold Foam with a Blender

What if you want to make plenty of cold foam at once? A regular blender will get the job done!

blender with milk

  1. Add about one cup (or even more) milk to the blender.
  2. You can start with a lower volume and slowly turn it to the max. The faster and more powerful your blender is, the better foam you will get.
  3. Observe how the foam is being produced in the blender and stop it when it’s nice and smooth.

Pros:

  • Great for making a bigger batch of cold foam
  • Very fast and effortless

Cons:

  • Cleaning the blender afterward takes some effort
  • Good blenders might be a bit pricey

You can also use a handheld blender, although it might not have enough power to handle more than one cup of milk.

How to Make Cold Foam with a French Press

One popular method of making cold foam with perfect uniform bubbles is to use a French press. But instead of using the power of an electric motor, you have to work your muscles with this method.

making cold foam with French press

  1. Pour the milk into your French press coffee maker. The amount depends on how big your French press is. You should always put enough so that the filter at the end of the plunger will be properly immersed but not too much as the volume will increase in the process.
  2. Put the lid and plunger on and pump the plunger up and down.
  3. You should get a nice cold foam in about 30 to 60 seconds depending on how much milk you used.

Pros:

  • Creates nice cold foam with tiny bubbles
  • No need for electricity — you can even do this when camping

Cons:

  • Takes some physical effort

Other Ways to Make Cold foam Without a Milk Frother

So what if you don’t have any of the mentioned tools at hand’s reach.

Should you give up? Or run to the store and buy some equipment?

No, not yet. You can make cold foam in any resealable jar or another container:

  1. Put the milk into the container and close the lid. Make sure it’s tightly closed and doesn’t leak.
  2. Shake the container vigorously for about one minute and you should have nice and fluffy foam.

What is the Best Milk to Use for Cold Foam?

Dense and smooth cold foam is best made using nonfat or low-fat milk.

If you want your foam creamier, use milk with higher fat content, half-and-half, or heavy cream.

You can also make your own mixture. Let’s say you have nonfat milk and heavy cream in the ref — you can use half a cup of nonfat milk and add one tablespoon of heavy cream.

What Are Some Flavorings That You Can Add to Cold Foam?

Cold foam can be flavored with anything from chocolate, vanilla, or cinnamon, to more exotic choices like pumpkin spice, or mint extract. Flavored syrups are also a great option since they have the sweetness and flavor combined in one product.

How to Serve Cold Foam?

Pour your cold drink into a glass with ice. Leave enough space for the foam.

Then pour the cold foam on top. You can also use a spoon to add more foam to top it off over the brim of the glass!

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