I was a barista at Starbucks for 5 years and got hooked on the Caramel Macchiatos. I would drink one nearly every morning as I opened the coffee shop at the deplorable hour of 4 am. In the spring and summer months I opted for the Starbucks Iced Caramel Macchiato since it was cool and refreshing, but still full of that silky espresso I needed to wake up.
Unfortunately, I had to hang up my green apron and could no longer afford to buy a Starbucks espresso beverage everyday without my employee discount. But Hallelujah! I could finally sleep in!
So I took matters into my own hands and duplicated the drink at home. If you want to save lots of money but still have your favorite coffee drink, then this recipe is for you!
Hot or iced, caramel macchiatos are very easy to make. Since summer is upon us, let me explain how to make the iced version. But know that all you have to do for the hot version is substitute the cold milk for the steamed milk of your choice.
How to Make an Iced Caramel Macchiato in 3 Easy Steps
Caramel macchiatos are really easy to make, you just need good quality ingredients. You'll need robust espresso, milk, ice, vanilla syrup, and caramel sauce.
Step 1: Prepare the Milk and Ice
It is essential to have the milk and ice prepared in your glass ahead of time because they are what is going to "catch" your espresso shot and keep it from going "bad." I use a regular 12 oz glass and pour in 2 tablespoons of vanilla syrup.
Did you know that you can buy Starbucks' brand vanilla syrup from your local store?
It costs about $15 for a bottle and comes with a pump. You can buy all sorts of flavors too!
If you're using a pump, put in 2 squirts of vanilla syrup. You can also find Torani Vanilla Syrup at the grocery store or online if you don't have a Starbucks near you. If you're not using a pump, measure in about 2 tablespoons of syrup.
Now it's time for the milk! I fill the glass with 1 cup of lowfat milk. You can use whatever milk you choose- whole, nonfat, or even almond milk!
Then I pour in the ice, leaving about 2 inches of room at the top. This is where the espresso and caramel will go.
Step 2: Pour the Espresso Shot
What makes a caramel macchiato so necessary for life is the shot of espresso! If you have an espresso machine, you'll want to pull a shot (or 2!) and pour it immediately into the milk. This is an essential step in the drink. If you don't put the shot immediately into the milk the shot will taste bitter and burnt. Who likes that? Nobody that I know!
If you don't have an espresso machine you can use either 1/4 cup of triple strength brewed coffee or 1 tablespoon of instant espresso mixed with 2 tablespoons of hot water or coffee.
Are you a decaf kind of person? No problem, just pull decaf shots.
Caramel macchiato means "marked," so when you pour your espresso shots on top of the milk, you are "marking" your beverage.
If you order your iced caramel macchiato upside down, then pour your espresso shot in first and then mix it with the milk. Or you can simply mix it all together with a straw.
Step 3: Pour on the Caramel Sauce
You can't have a Starbucks Iced Caramel Macchiato without the caramel sauce! Any caramel sauce will do, but you want it to be thick and sticky.
Avoid the thin caramel drizzle like Hershey's and opt for either Starbucks' brand or Torani. And if you want to try a mocha or white mocha, and have a variety of flavors to choose from in the morning, try this three pack of sauces!
Make a cross hatch pattern on top of the espresso by drizzling the caramel back and forth one direction and then turning the cup and going up and back in the opposite direction.
Finish it off with two swirls around the edge of the cup and you're done! All you need is a straw!
The caramel will eventually fall to the bottom of the cup, but it is fun to watch it streak the cup. It also makes for a little caramel in each slurp!
This is one of my favorite afternoon pick-me-ups. Sometimes I even have one on warm summer mornings...that is, after the sun rises!
This Mama needs her sleep! I am more of a night owl these days.
If you like Starbucks Iced Caramel Macchiatos then you will love some other recipes I have.
What Starbucks drink do you love the most? Have you learned to make any other Starbucks drinks at home?
P.S. If you love this post drop me a comment below. I would love to hear your thoughts and to get the opportunity to chat!
Copycat Starbucks Iced Caramel Macchiato
- 2 Tbsp Vanilla syrup such as Torani
- 1 cup lowfat milk
- 1-2 shots espresso or use 1/4 cup triple strength coffee
- 2 Tbsp caramel sauce
- 1 cup ice
- Using a 12 oz glass, pour in the vanilla syrup, milk, and ice. Leave 1-2 inches of room at the top of the cup.
- Pour your espresso shots and immediately pour them into the milk. Let them rest on top.
- Drizzle the caramel sauce on top of the espresso in a cross hatch pattern.