How to Make an Americano – 5 Steps to Make it PERFECT

Love having a strong coffee without milk but don’t like the extreme bitterness that comes with a pure espresso shot? Learn how to make an Americano and your problems are solved. It’s a delicious beverage that will get you on your way to starting your day. 

Try out a cup of Americano instead. And if you’re not sure how to make Americano, we’re here to help. Keep reading to know what an Americano is and how you can make one for yourself.

Related Content: How to Make an Americano With a French Press

What is an Americano?

Americano is a coffee drink that involves a pure espresso shot made milder with water. Diluting espresso with water makes sure that the coffee retains its strength without emanating as much bitterness. 

Americano is a Spanish, Italian, and Portuguese word for “American.” The origin of this coffee is fascinating. 

Americans were always used to milder coffee as compared to Europeans. But during world war II, when American soldiers were posted in European nations like Italy, they couldn’t find such mild coffee. So they diluted the traditional espresso with hot water, thereby inventing the Americano. 

Even though it was created out of necessity, the Americano is one of the most popular coffee shop beverages to this day. You can go to Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Tim Horton and basically any independently-owned coffee shop and get yourself an Americano. It’s an easy blueprint to follow for a delicious coffee drink that is loaded with caffeine.

starbucks americano
Photo Credit: Starbucks

Currently, there exist many customizations of the Americano recipe. However, the authentic recipe is a must-try for any coffee enthusiast. 

Step-By-Step Americano Coffee Recipe

Want to know how to make Americano with an espresso machine? Follow the steps below. 

  1. Switch on your espresso machine with an espresso mug ready. 
  2. Pour either one or two shots of espresso in the mug. The quantity here depends on how much coffee you’re in the mood for. 
  3. Prepare twice the shots of hot water compared to the shots of espresso you poured. The standard water to espresso ratio for an Americano is 2:1. However, if you prefer a milder coffee flavor, you can even go for a 3:1 ratio. 
  4. You can use your coffee machine or microwave to heat the water. If none is available, even a stovetop or heating kettle works well. 
  5. Pour the espresso shot into the water. Going the other way round might break down the espresso, but you can try it yourself. 

How to Make Americano With Instant Coffee?

nescafe instant coffee

Even if you do not have coffee pods, freshly ground beans, or an espresso machine, you don’t have to miss out on the experience of drinking an Americano. 

Of course, the taste won’t be the same or as intense, but it’s worth trying to make Americano with instant coffee. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Mix a teaspoon of instant coffee powder or Nescafe to a glass along with hot water. Stir well such that there are no lumps. 
  2. Add more water when you’re done mixing. 
  3. If you’re thinking about how to make iced Americano, instead of adding hot water in the second step, add ice water. 

Getting the ratio right is super important while making an Americano, but that’s not perfectly possible while using an instant coffee. That is why the best way to make an Americano is to use an espresso machine and measure out everything. But if you are in a bind and have access to instant coffee, this is a good option to get you through the morning. 

Customizing Americano Recipes


The above recipes are effortless to customize too. For example, if you’re looking for more coffee but an even more diluted flavor, you can increase the water content. Similarly, you can also make it slightly sweet by adding a sweetener such as sugar. 

A version of Americano called the Italiano Americano also exists. In this, the water to espresso ratio is 1:1. As you must’ve guessed, it’s more robust in flavor relative to a classic americano.  

But are you also wondering how to make an Americano with milk? You can’t! No version of Americano contains any milk, cream, or artificial creamers of any kind. If you’re the one for a milky or chocolatey coffee drink, go for something like a latte or cappuccino. Sure, you can add some creamer or milk after it’s completed, but to many a true Americano does not have either of those in it. 


Following the above steps, you can prepare yourself a delicious and energy-boosting cup of Americano. Just make sure you follow the perfect Americano ratio, and you’ll be good to go! 

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