The Easiest Way to Froth Milk at Home—No Tools Required

Finally, motivation to leave your bed in the morning.

A warm, luscious matcha latté or creamy cappuccino may be an imperative way to kick off your day (who could blame you), but we’re willing to bet your wallet isn’t on board with this routine.

So what now? Guessing you’ve considered kicking the habit and making craft coffee from scratch, but took one look at the price of most espresso machines—and threw in the towel. Who could figure out how to use one of those things without caffeine in their system anyway? True, you can buy reasonably priced milk frothers like an ElitaPro to successfully produce airy foam. However, what if you want to take the DIY approach?

We have a simple solution to your every homemade steamed-milk struggle. The only tools you need to make frothed milk at home are a mason jar and a microwave. And perhaps the best part, this trick takes less than two minutes. Here’s how to do it.

Start by filling a clean, empty mason jar with as much milk as you’d typically use in your coffee. Make sure not to fill the container more than halfway so you’ll have room for the airy foam. Surprisingly, the best types of milk for frothing are 2% and nonfat, rather than whole milk or half-and-half. (Reduced fat milks are generally fortified with extra protein, and the whey is a key stabilizer in frothing.) If you're dairy-free, definitely go for oat milk.

Screw the lid on the jar and give it a vigorous shake—really, as hard as you can—for 45 seconds to a minute. The milk should look foamy and have doubled in volume.

Next, unscrew the lid from the jar and set it aside. Heat the milk jar uncovered in the microwave for 30 seconds. You’ll see that the foam has now risen to the top of the jar and looks stabilized, which means it’s ready to use. Pour the warm milk over a shot of espresso (or drip coffee, for café au lait) before using a spoon to gently scoop the extra frothy milk foam over top. Make sure to use the foam right away, as it will dissolve if left sitting out for more than a few minutes.

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