What is an Americano? This question is asked by many people who are new to the coffee world.
The answer, quite simply, is that it is espresso mixed with hot water. But there is much more to Americano coffee than just espresso and hot water...
In this post, we'll explore what makes a great Americano so that you learn how to make one at home. We are hoping to get you hooked because making it home will save you lots of money and time. Plus it will help you be a more environmentally responsible coffee drinker.
Also, did you know Americanos are one of the healthiest coffee drinks out there? Yes, that's right!
In this post, we'll cover this and much more!
So what are you waiting for? Grab a cup of coffee (or tea!) and let's get started!
Before we spoil the surprise (okay, fine, not too much to spoil here) we'd like to talk about the reason an Americano has this curious name.
The origins of the Americano date back to World War II.
During the war, American soldiers in Italy often complained that what they found served as coffee was far too strong and bitter for their taste. They were being served espresso coffee while they were more accustomed to large drip coffee mugs.
In an effort to make the drink more to their liking, they would add hot water to their espresso shots. This resulted in a coffee that was lighter and more diluted than straight espresso.
The Italians took notice of this combination and started to refer to these weird coffee drinks Americans would drink as Americano coffee or Caffè Americano in Italian.
Thank you for bearing with us so far...
But now that we have some context, an Americano is a hot black coffee drink made by mixing espresso with hot water.
How much water, you ask? There is no set standard so it depends. But usually, the ratio is half espresso and half hot water. Sometimes it's more diluted, about 1/3 espresso and 2/3 hot water.
Well, not so simple. Things in the coffee world tend to be quite nuanced and the Americano is no exception to this...
We mentioned above that an Americano is espresso mixed with hot water. But what if we were to tell you that there are different ways to make an Americano?
Confused? We don't blame you.
There are two schools of thought.
This is a valid question, especially if you can easily run to your local coffee shop (don't run, it's not safe, especially in winter).
If you make it a habit of having daily Americanos, then you should make your Americano at home.
It's very simple. Here's what you need.
Once you've gathered all the equipment and ingredients...
Note: you may have noticed we added the espresso to the hot water. You can of course add the hot water to the espresso and compare! This should mellow the flavor of the Americano.
You can also try to make a Red Eye coffee if you're feeling a little adventurous!
Like most coffee drinks, how delicious your drink will be, boils down to the quality of your ingredients, tools, and your skills.
Here are some easy tips to make your Americano even better.
There are many variations, possibly hundreds if you consider all the possible customizations that can be made. Just look at the menus of some coffee shops like Starbucks.
We'll cover some of the most popular ones.
At first, an Americano might seem like the same thing as other types of black coffee. But that is not the case, let's clear up any confusion you may have.
The main difference between an Americano and drip coffee is that drip coffee is what you get when you use a drip coffee maker to get brewed coffee. It is often what people have every morning at home or what they order at the local diner.
On the other hand, Americanos are made with espresso. Espresso is a type of coffee that is made by forcing hot high-pressure water through finely-ground coffee beans. This method produces a thicker, more concentrated drink.
The first obvious difference is that cold brew is a cold drink whereas the Americano is served piping hot.
But Iced Americanos exist, so what's really the difference?
The fundamental difference is that Americanos are made with espresso (hot temperature, high pressure) and cold brew coffee is made from coarsely ground coffee steeped in cold water for over 24 hours.
It would make us really sad if you've made it this far and don't know the difference...
Espresso is an Americano without hot water, and an Americano is an espresso with hot water.
Yes, they are, provided you don’t have too many of them each day!
They only contain espresso and hot water, which means low calories, no sugars, and no carbs. Americano coffee is the perfect way to start the day without ruining your diet. They are great if you’re doing a keto diet or intermittent fasting.
And you’ll get all the benefits of coffee. Some benefits include a lower chance of heart and liver failure, a lower chance of developing Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, and many more. The list is long!
No, an Americano usually contains less caffeine than a typical drip coffee.
But there are many variables to this such as the serving size, types of beans, and personal preferences. An Americano containing two espresso shots has about 130 to 140 mg of caffeine. Drip coffee has 95 to 200 mg, depending on the preparation.
There is no standard recipe for an Americano, but typically you're looking at a 1:1 espresso to water ratio to a 1:2 espresso to water ratio. You can adjust the ratios to your liking and see what works best for you!
There are endless possibilities, but some simple sugar syrup with a dash of vanilla is a nice addition to an Americano. I love adding Iced Americanos; they're one of my favorite iced coffee drinks.
An americano misto is basically a regular caffe misto, but instead of using brewed coffee, you use espresso and hot water till halfway then you are steamed milk for the other half of the drink!
An Americano is a simple and delicious drink that can be enjoyed any time during the day (well, not too late unless you are a night owl).
Its simplicity makes it what it is, which also leaves room for your creativity and flavor customizations. You'll never get bored with this classic drink!
What do you think about Americanos? Do you like them? Will you give them a try?
Let us know in the comments below!
This article is intended for informational purposes only. It is not meant to replace professional medical advice, treatment or diagnosis. Do not consume any type of coffee, tea or herbal infusion if you are allergic to it. The information in this article is not intended to treat serious medical conditions. Please seek professional medical advice before using home remedies.