The 7 Best Milk Frothers of 2022, According to Our Tests

We love the ElitaPro Double Whisk Handheld Milk Frother because it’s easy to use, effective, and budget-friendly.

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Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

A milk frother is a great tool that allows you to get that enticing foam found on barista-made cappuccinos and lattes right at home. "For at-home coffee drinkers who don't have an accessible steam wand, a milk frother can be a cheap and easy way to make frothy airy foam to accompany their coffee or tea beverage," says Jiyoon Han, a certified Q Grader and owner of Bean & Bean Coffee Roasters. The best milk frothers produce small, tight, and consistent bubbles that give a silky texture and sweet taste, and also manage to keep their shape for more than a few minutes.

To help you choose the best milk frother, we tested 26 models in our Lab, assessing them on usability, design, performance, and range of features. In addition to Han, we spoke to two other coffee experts to get their input on what makes a quality milk frother: Bailey Manson, the Director of Innovation at Intelligentsia Coffee, and Josey Markiewicz, Senior Director of Coffee Quality at La Colombe.

Our top pick is the ElitaPro Double Whisk Handheld Milk Frother for its affordable price point, ability to produce quality foam from different milk types, and its extra features, including a stand for your countertop and an additional whisk attachment.

Read on to learn more about our top picks and how to choose the best milk frother for your at-home coffee bar.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall Milk Frother: ElitaPro Double Whisk Handheld Milk Frother

Best Milk Frothers
Amazon

Also available at Walmart.

Who it's for: People who want a budget-friendly frother for every type of drink, and people who drink oat milk with their coffee drinks.

Who it isn't for: People who don't want to hold a power button down the entire time they froth.

This little milk frother from ElitaPro sure packs a punch, as it successfully produced delectable foam for every one of the liquids we tested. Our tester told us that the whole milk produced a foam with a "high-gloss shine," while the foam from the oat milk ended up being "silky." Although both milk foam types performed well during our testing, it was the oat milk's "very tight, small bubbles" that enabled it to hold up better atop the drink overtime. If you're someone who opts for oat milk with their coffee, this product is the best option.

As for our cold foam, this milk frother produced "stiff peaks" that "held their height and shape" during our tests. We are also able to mix our hot chocolate quite well, with the end result being a thick, velvety foam. Our tester believes this excellent performance can be attributed to the product's double whisks.

You can keep this tool in a drawer or upright on your counter with the help of the included stand. The package also comes with a separate whisk attachment and is available in multiple colors, including baby blue. The one thing though our tester did not like about the ElitePro Double Whisk Handheld Milk Frother is that you have to hold the power button down the entire time you use it for it to work.

Product Details:

  • Type: Handheld
  • Power Source: Batteries
  • Care: Hand wash

Price at time of publish: $8

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Best Rechargeable Milk Frother: FoodVille Electric Milk Frother

Best Milk Frothers
Amazon

Who it's for: People who want a handheld milk frother that can be powered without batteries.

Who it isn't for: People who don't want their foam deflating after a few minutes on their drinks.

The coolest part about this handheld milk frother is that it doesn't require batteries. Instead, you charge it via USB, a feature that Markiewicz recommends people look out for when shopping for a handheld milk frother. Once fully charged, the milk frother can last up to a month until it runs out of power again. Other convenient features of this milk frother include a stand, a second frother head that resembles a traditional whisk, and two speed levels. Our tester absolutely loved the USB charging capabilities but found during testing that the performance of this handheld milk frother varied.

Frothing both the whole milk and the oat milk resulted in small glossy foam that consisted of tight, small bubbles. After about a few minutes, however, both foams ended up deflating. This FoodVille model did better with cold foam, as that foam was able to keep its shape as well as maintain a "silky" texture. We were also able to mix our hot chocolate well and produce foam, but on the product's low speed setting, the milk overflowed in our cup. With all of that said, this is still a fantastic option for multitaskers and people on the go who need a milk frother that can easily power up and be ready exactly when they need it.

Product Details:

  • Type: Handheld
  • Power Source: USB
  • Care: Hand wash

Price at time of publish: $19

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Best Portable Milk Frother: Golde Superwhisk

Best Milk Frothers
Golde

Who it's for: People who like making their home coffee drinks on the go.

Who it isn't for: People who want a handheld milk frother that is lighter in feel.

The travel-friendly Golde Superwhisk is a solid option for people who like to make their own coffee, regardless of where they are. You can pop this in your purse and take it to the office or bring it with you on vacation so your homemade coffee drinks are always an option. This portability is made possible thanks to the small size and convenient travel case.

Although small, this little machine sure has a lot of power. The milk frother gets its name, the Superwhisk, from its speed settings. Unlike other milk frothers that feature a low and high setting, this one has a fast and superfast setting. These fast settings resulted in glossy foams when mixing our warm and cold whole milk, and a small, tight bubbled foam while mixing our oat milk. The foams, however, did fall within the first five minutes, and the whole milk actually started to fall after just a minute. It did perform better with our hot chocolate, resulting in a fully mixed drink with a nice layer of foam. Our tester did note that this handheld milk frother is heavier to hold compared to others we tested, so if you're looking for something that feels lightweight, you'll want to choose a different product.

Product Details:

  • Type: Handheld
  • Power Source: USB
  • Care: Hand wash

Price at time of publish: $24

RELATED: The 7 Best Single-Serve Coffee Makers for a Fresh Cup Every Time

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Best Milk Frother for Hot Chocolate: Zyliss Milk Frother

Best Milk Frothers
Amazon

Also available at Sur La Table.

Who it's for: People who want a no frills frother that produces a small but even amount of foam.

Who it isn't for: People who want a milk frother that can produce a lot of foam.

People usually think of milk frothers as a tool for coffee drinks, but they're also great to use when creating a succulent cup of hot chocolate. The speed of an electric frother allows for a more incorporated hot cocoa mix and gives you the ability to create foam, resulting in an overall creamier drink. The Zyliss Milk Frother is the tool to create the perfect cup of hot chocolate with. Our tester found that this specific head design made for an "even mix" and created an inch's worth of foam with a consistency of small bubbles (exactly what we were looking for).

You can also use this to create foam for your coffee drinks. The frother produced small-bubbled foam with our whole milk that our tester called "glossy and tight" after our initial pour (though it deflated almost completely after five minutes). This Zyliss model also produced a "very silky foam" during our cold foam test and after about five minutes, only lost about "an eighth" of its shape, which is good compared to other frothers we tested. However, it didn't produce a sizable amount of foam during our oat milk test. If you're still interested in trying this frother out, know that it comes with a two-year warranty.

Product Details:

  • Type: Handheld
  • Power Source: Battery
  • Care: Hand wash

Price at time of publish: $16

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Best Milk Frother for Cold Foam: Ninja Easy Frother

Best Milk Frothers
Amazon

Also available at Home Depot.

Who it's for: People who want a milk frother with a microwaveable carafe.

Who it isn't for: People who don't want to manually pump their milk frother.

Famous for their great blenders, Ninja also created a superb milk frother. Our tester called the foam produced by this Ninja product to be "perfect." This was the case with both the hot and cold whole milk we tested, with our tester describing the foam produced as "nice, silky, and tight." To achieve this, we did veer from the brand's instructions, using 60 to 70 reps of pumps instead of the recommended 20. Although this required more work on our end, we found the end results totally worth it.

The same amount of reps produced similar foam results with our oat milk, and like other manual milk frothers we tested, the Ninja Easy Frother performed poorly while making our chocolate milk. The result was actually so bad that our tester said there were chunks of wet and dry chocolate mix floating around inside the carafe. The carafe can hold 12 ounces of milk and is microwave-friendly, making it super easy to quickly heat up your milk and get going with frothing.

Product Details:

  • Type: Countertop
  • Power Source: Manual
  • Care: Dishwasher-safe

Price at time of publish: $26

RELATED: The 7 Best Espresso Machines for Coffeehouse-Quality Drinks at Home

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Best Manual Milk Frother: Fino Stainless Steel Milk Frother

Best Milk Frothers
Amazon

Who it's for: People who want a milk frother that is dishwasher-safe.

Who it isn't for: People who want a milk frother that will mix hot chocolate well.

This milk frother stands out because it can double as a cute little creamer jar that will display well on your kitchen's countertops. It differs from electric options in that you have to put in more elbow grease to create your own foam—the product promises quality foam with 60 seconds or less of pumping. While the extra work may turn some people off, our testing revealed that this manual option created better foam than some of the electric ones we tested.

During our whole milk test, this frother created "super stable foam" that had "very tight construction with a high gloss." Our cold milk foam also came out great, with our tester comparing it to the foam they typically see at the coffee shop. The oat milk produced larger bubbles compared to the whole milk but still had an "overall good froth." The hot chocolate, on the other hand, didn't mix well at all, which our tester attributed to not being able to see the actual mixing process. Keep this in mind before you buy if you prefer to watch the frothing process.

Product Details:

  • Type: Countertop
  • Power Source: Manual
  • Care: Dishwasher-safe

Price at time of publish: $29

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Best Splurge Milk Frother: Bodum Bistro Electric Milk Frother

Best Milk Frothers
Amazon

Also available at Crate & Barrel and Sur La Table.

Who it's for: People who want an automatic milk frother.

Who it isn't for: People who want a relatively quiet milk frother.

People who don't want to put in manual labor of any kind to froth their milk will like this luxurious automatic milk frother from Bodum. This frother can hold 10 ounces of liquids and heat milk up to 158 degrees in under a minute. And if you remove the whisk, this Bodum model turns into a milk warmer.

Our tester told us that the Bodum Bistro Electric Milk Frother performed well during all of our tests. It consistently produced foam made up of tight, small bubbles that held well in the glasses, regardless of the liquid type. For the hot chocolate, the resulting foam was actually so frothy that our tester compared it to that of a milkshake. The only downside to this automatic milk frother is that it is much louder than others we tested. And even though the price is certainly a lot higher than your average milk frother, our tester said they would not only buy this product for themselves, but also recommend it to family and friends.

Product Details:

  • Type: Countertop
  • Power Source: Electric
  • Care: Mug and lid are dishwasher-safe

Price at time of publish: $83

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / FRED HARDY

Final Verdict

Overall, we recommend the ElitaPro Double Whisk Handheld Milk Frother for its ability to create a smooth foam that holds its shape with a variety of milk types, its low price, and extra features, including a stand that can be displayed on your kitchen countertop.

Our Testing Process

We tested 26 different milk frothers and assessed them on usability, design, and performance. We followed the manufacturer's instructions for making foam out of whole milk and oat milk that we could add to our lattes. For this test, we evaluated the quality of the foam produced by the milk frothers by volume, bubbles (small, tight bubbles are best for lattes), and whether or not it kept its shape throughout our testing.

We then did the same for our cold whole milk, and noted whether or not it was pourable from the glass we were working in. We also made hot chocolate with our milk frothers, evaluating if they could adequately mix our ingredients as well as produce a frothy foam. We also considered how easy each frother was to clean and if it had any additional features that made the process of frothing easier and more convenient. We took all this into account to come up with the best milk frothers.

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / RUSSELL KILGORE

How to Shop for Milk Frothers Like a Pro

Drink Type

According to Manson, coffee drinks that require frothed milk traditionally include macchiatos, cappuccinos, flat whites, and lattes. Cappuccinos contain espresso, steam milk, and milk foam while lattes and flat whites have the same ingredients but require a smaller layer of foam on top. Macchiatos consist of a shot of espresso with foamy milk on top. However, both Manson and Han strongly encourage people to make their coffee however they want, regardless of whether it veers from the traditional drink recipes. "Coffee is a matter of preference," Han says. "Use your milk frother to your liking in customizing your own coffee drink."

If you are making coffee drinks with foamed milk occasionally, it's best to go with a lower-cost milk frother, which is usually an electric handheld or manual model. If you are making these types of drinks every day, consider splurging on an automatic milk frother that does all the work for you.

Frother Type

There are three types of milk frothers available, including automatic, handheld, and manual. Automatic milk frothers do all the work for you—all you have to do is turn the machine on and/or select a setting, if multiple setting options are available, and your milk will be frothed to your liking. This is a great option for people who don't want to do any manual labor to get their milk frothed, which isn't the case with manual and electric handheld options. Handheld options do require some work, as you have to hold the wand, which has a whisk attached at the end, to froth your milk. Manual options require you to pump the mechanism up and down to achieve frothy milk.

"If you're looking for fast and easy, I'd go with the manual type," says Markiewicz. "Don't waste your money on any plug-in model that will take up space on the countertop, unless you want your milk electronically heated as well." He also tells us that if you have a French press at home, you actually don't need to buy a separate tool to froth milk. "It's very literally the exact same thing [as a manual option]. Just fill your French press with enough milk to cover the plunger and plunge rapidly until the desired texture is achieved."

Space

Luckily, milk frothers don't take up as much space in your kitchen as other appliances and tools. However, there are milk frothers that are larger than others, and if you have a small kitchen, space definitely needs to be taken into consideration. Automatic milk frothers are always the biggest and will take up as much counter space as a small tea kettle. Meanwhile, manual ones can be as big as a small French press or a milk creamer and are much easier to store in cabinets. Those without a lot of counter or storage space should get a handheld milk frother. These models are so small that they can be as big as a fork, so you can easily fit them in a drawer with your other utensils.

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / RUSSELL KILGORE

More Milk Frothers to Consider

Nespresso Aeroccino 4 Milk Frother: This pricey milk frother allows you to choose the foam type based on your coffee drink. This product produced tight foam with our warm whole milk and oat milk and a "smooth, pourable" foam for our cold whole milk. After five minutes, though, the foams started to fall, making the high price seem not worth it.

Instant Pot Instant Milk Frother: Our tester told us that this automatic milk frother produced a good froth for the whole and oak milk as well as a "very stable, silky foam" for the cold whole milk. It can hold up to ten ounces of milk, create five ounces of foam, and has four settings ideal for different types of coffee drinks.

Questions You Might Ask

What is the best milk to use with milk frothers?

All three of our experts agree that whole milk makes for the best milk foam. This has to do with the fats and proteins present in this type of milk. It doesn't mean that milk alternatives won't produce solid foam, though. We used oat milk during our testing and were pleased to discover that we were able to produce delectable foam with some milk frothers. In our preliminary research we found that oat milk is one of the better alternative milks to use for frothing, which is why we used it during our testing.

Despite this, you still won't get the same result with whole milk as you would with plant-based milks. "Most other alternative milks just don't have the perfect balance of, and types of, protein and fat created by the natural world," says Manon. "Most alternative milks have few solids, low protein, larger proteins, and less viscous fats. It's more difficult to create microfoam, which by definition is not only tiny bubbles but is stabilized by the proteins and hydrated by the fats."

If you still want, or need, to use a plant-based milk to create your foam, get ones that are labeled "barista series", or something similar. Barista series milks, according to Markiewicz, feature added oil to make up for the lack of fat in the plant-based milk. The addition of that oil increases the fat content, which will result in a milk foam with better texture.

Best Milk Frothers
REAL SIMPLE / RUSSELL KILGORE

How should properly foamed milk taste and feel?

According to Markiewicz, frothed milk should be "velvety, rich, and smooth, with a silken feel and a pronounced sweetness." Manson adds that that sweetness should not have a caramel-like taste to it, because when milk is heated too high, it can start to caramelize and ultimately burn.

In terms of how your frothed milk should look, Han says that "small, consistent bubbles" are what you should try to achieve. However, she is keen to point out that no matter what type of at-home milk frother you have, it simply won't replicate the quality you'll get at coffee shops. That's because steam wands, which coffee shops use to heat up and froth milk, are better at creating milk foam, especially foam that is compatible for making latte art. If you're dead set on having cafe-quality milk foam, or like to experiment with latte art on your at-home coffee drinks, you should get an espresso machine with a built-in steam wand instead.

How do I properly froth my milk with my milk frother?

It depends on the type of milk frother you have. Since each type operates differently, it's best to refer to the instructions laid out in your owner's manual first before you do anything. If you're still feeling a little lost, consider the following tips our experts gave us. Han says that for handheld milk frothers, you want to be able to create a vortex that you can see. Manson echoes this, telling us that "if the foamer [frother] is not submerged enough or if they are not making a whirlpool, they will make giant bubbles that are very difficult to get rid of."

Another mistake Manson says people make with milk frothers is not frothing in a large enough vessel. "It's very difficult to foam milk in a pitcher smaller than 12 ounces, and it's extremely difficult to foam less than four fluid ounces in a pitcher that small," he says. "So if you want a macchiato you sort of still need to overdo it with the milk."

Take Our Word for It

This article was written by Rachel Center, a product reviews home writer for Real Simple. We researched the best milk frothers and tested 26 of the most popular in our Lab, evaluating them on usability, design, performance, and range of features. She also spoke to three coffee experts, including Bailey Manson, the Director of Innovation at Intelligentsia Coffee, Jiyoon Han, a certified Q Grader and owner of Bean & Bean Coffee Roasters, and Josey Markiewicz, Senior Director of Coffee Quality at La Colombe, for advice on how to shop for the best milk frothers.

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Next to each product on this list, you may have noticed a Real Simple Selects seal of approval. Any product appearing alongside that seal has been vetted by our team—put through tests and graded on its performance to earn a spot on our list. Although we buy most of the products we test, sometimes we do get samples from companies if purchasing a product ourselves isn't an option. If that's the case, we test the product just like we test anything we buy, but we also disclose that we received it for free to be as transparent with you as possible.

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