How to Froth Milk

Learn how to froth milk without a frother or fancy espresso machine. You can use a hand-held immersion blender, a regular stand blender, or just a jar with a lid to make frothy milk like your favorite coffee shop.

three cups of coffee topped with frothed milk.

Sometimes it’s the simple things that bring a little brightness to each day, and, for me, that’s adding a little frothed milk to my morning cup of coffee. It’s a little thing, but dressing up a plain-Jane cup of joe with a frothy, foamy cap of milk helps kick the day off in the right direction.

Frothed Milk Without a Frother

It isn’t hard to do, and you can totally do a DIY version with a microwave and a blender or a jar with a lid. You also don’t have to make shots of espresso to make an “authentic” coffee drink. I use my regular old drip coffee and dress it up with frothed milk.

overhead shot of a cup of coffee topped with frothed milk.

I modeled this after a cafe au lait, which is equal parts coffee and milk. So I like about 1/2 cup of each per serving.

What kind of milk is best for frothing?

For the best froth, I recommend using whole milk, but it will work with 2% milk, too.

I have also tested it with non-dairy milk, like unsweetened almond milk, which sort of works. You will get some froth, but not as much as regular milk. Sweetened almond milk works better. Sweetened oat milk should work well, too. One thing I like about the almond milk version is that it has a really wonderful nutty scent when you warm it up.

Instead of steaming the milk, I warm it up in the microwave first. It takes between one and two minutes, depending on the amount – you want it steaming hot but not to the point that it starts to boil. Depending on your microwave, you may need more or less time. You can also warm it on the stove.

ingredients for frothed milk.

How to Froth with a Blender

Once it’s hot, you can froth it using an immersion blender, a regular stand blender, or just in a jar.

If you use an immersion blender (or stick blender), the head will need to be completely immersed in the milk, so use a tall narrow container. The tall sides will prevent the milk from splashing out.

overhead shot of milk frothed in a blender.

Blend continuously until it starts to foam – it only takes about a minute.

You can also use a regular blender. Just pour the milk in and process until it turns foamy.

milk in a jar.

How to Froth Milk in a Jar

There is also the jar method – use a microwave-safe canning jar (a small mason jar works great). Microwave the milk in it (without the lid) for about a minute – the milk should be hot but not boiling.

jar being shaken.

Secure the lid and shake until the milk is frothy. The jar will be hot, so you may need to hold it with a towel while you shake.

To get that nice, frothy top pour the milk into your coffee using a spoon or knife to hold back the foam. Then, spoon the foam on top.

pouring the frothed milk into a glass.

Of course, you can gussy-up your drinks with a dusting of cinnamon over the top or a sprinkle of grated chocolate if you’re feeling fancy-like.

Happy frothing ☕

a coffee topped with frothed milk.

More Recipes to Try

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How to Froth Milk

a coffee topped with frothed milk.

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You don’t need a fancy coffee machine or frother to make foamy frothed milk for your coffee. This DIY foamed milk is easy and a nice way to dress up your coffee.

  • Author: April Anderson
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 2 minutes
  • Total Time: 12 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Drinks
  • Method: Blend
  • Cuisine: American


  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup strong brewed coffee


  • Heat the milk in a microwave-safe measuring cup (like pyrex) or bowl for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. You don’t want to milk to boil – it should be steaming hot when it’s ready. Depending on your microwave you may need more or less time. You can also warm the milk in a saucepan on the stove.
  • Immersion blender: if you use this method, pour the hot milk into a narrow container with high sides. The milk should cover the head of the immersion blender. Run the blender for a minute or two or until the milk has developed a frothy foam.
  • You can also use a regular stand blender, just pour the milk into it and pulse several times until the milk bubbles and foams. 
  • The other option is with a microwave-safe jar. Heat the milk in it for one minute (without the lid). The milk should be hot but not boiling. Secure the lid and shake the jar until the milk is frothy. You might need to use a towel to hold the jar since it will be hot.
  • Pour the coffee into the mugs. Pour the frothed milk (use a spoon to hold back the foam) and then spoon the milk foam on top. If you want to get fancy garnish with a dusting of cinnamon or cocoa powder.


You can also use 2% milk or almond milk. The milk might not be as frothy and thick, but it will work.


  • Serving Size: 1/2 of recipe
  • Calories: 76
  • Sugar: 6.2g
  • Sodium: 54.8mg
  • Fat: 4g
  • Saturated Fat: 2.3g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 1.2g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: 5.8g
  • Fiber: 0g
  • Protein: 4g
  • Cholesterol: 12.2g

Do you love this recipe? Don’t forget to leave a comment and your recipe star rating!

The nutrition is an estimate only. It was calculated using Nutrifox, an online nutrition calculator.

Post updated from the archives. First published in April 2020.

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