Difference between Frappuccino and Latte

Frappuccino and Latte are two popular names of coffee drinks available in coffee shops worldwide. One sometimes wonders why they cannot find a Frappuccino on the menu of most coffee restaurants. This article will help answer this question and will explore the differences between the two drinks.


Frappuccino vs Latte
Starbucks Java Chip Frappuccino

Frappuccino refers to a series of frozen coffee drinks prepared and served in Starbucks chain restaurants. This drink is essentially a blend of café frappe (milkshake with ice cream) and café cappuccino- the two popular coffee beverages. Starbucks official representatives claim that there are annual Frappuccino sales of over US $2 billion. Some Starbucks’ competitors in the wake of Frappuccino success developed their own similar drinks, such as Mochalatta and Caramelatta (sold in Cinnabon chain) and Chillers (sold in the Gloria Jean chain.)

Three base ingredients of Frappuccino are the actual coffee, ice and fruit base (for example, strawberries.) A cup of frappuccino is normally topped with whipped cream. There is a variety of additional ingredients that can be added to the drink.

Vinterlatte as being served in Copenhagen, Denmark

Latte generally refers to a coffee drink with added milk.

The writer Kenneth David says about café latte “…breakfast drinks of this kind have existed in Europe for generations, but the (commercial) caffè version of this drink is an American invention.”

Café latte can be served in a variety of styles:

  • In some restaurants, café latte is served in a glass with a napkin to hold it.
  • Café latte can be served in bowls. This style of serving is known as Scandinavian latte.
  • In the United States, and sometimes in Europe, a cup of café latte is usually decorated with art foam on top.
  • There is a variation of latte called iced latte, which in the United States contains espresso with chilled milk and ice. Unlike usual latte, the iced version doesn’t contain foam. Iced latte is often not stirred, so a layer of coffee floats on top of milk in a glass cup.
  • There is a variation of iced latte, called “bootleg latte,” or, sometimes, “poor man’s latte.” This beverage is prepared in a large cup and contains free milk from the condiment station and iced espresso.
Chai Tea Latte
International Delight Chai Tea Latte (Caramel Chai and Vanilla Chai)

Comparison chart

Frappuccino Latte
Is a Starbucks’ drink Originally, is an Italian coffee drink
Doesn’t contain espresso Café latte is made with café espresso as an ingredient

Frappuccino vs Latte

What is the difference between frappuccino and latte?

  • The Frappuccino trademark was bought by Starbucks together with the Boston’s coffee shop chain “The Coffee Connection,” which initially developed and trademarked this beverage. On the other hand, latte in its variations can be found in almost any coffee shop in the world, including Starbucks.

    Starbucks's Strawberries & Crème Frappuccino
    Starbucks’s Strawberries & Crème Frappuccino
  • Frappuccino is a “light” refreshing drink, and as such, it doesn’t contain espresso. A “true” latte, on the other hand, has a shot of espresso as a base ingredient, and is the stronger drink of the two.

    A cup of cafe latte made by a coffee maker machine
    A cup of cafe latte made by a coffee maker machine