There’s nothing like sitting down in your favorite coffee shop with mellow music in the background to a latte with that perfectly designed art splayed across the top. But anyone who has tried will know that those beautiful rosettas or elaborate swans are a lot harder to create than they look.
And it is even harder to create anything if you don’t have the right equipment. In this article we are going to review the best latte art pitchers so you can pour your way to that picture perfect cup.
If you take a quick look you will see that there is an abundance of different milk pitchers available in literally every shape, design, color, weight and style you can think of. So what are the important things you should be looking for when you are going to buy a latte art milk pitcher?
The first thing to consider is what size milk pitcher you will be needing. As a general rule you want a pitcher that is about 2-3 times the size of the cup you will be pouring into. The 2 main sizes that Milk Pitchers come in are 12 oz and 20 oz.
When it comes to frothing your milk, the ideal amount will sit just below the base of the spout about one-third of the way up the jug. If you fill your jug too high the milk will overflow when you are steaming it, and if you fill it too low the steaming wand won’t be submerged properly so you won’t achieve the microfoam you need for latte art.
When it comes to frothing milk you really need to be aiming to create microfoam. Microfoam is the finely textured milk that is used to create latte art; it is velvety smooth and looks like shiny wet paint. In order to create Microfoam you need to create a whirlpool when you are steaming the milk. A whirlpool helps break down the bubbles in the milk and allows it to be evenly heated and aerated and this is where the width of your latte art milk pitcher comes in. You need a jug that is wide enough to create a whirlpool. If the jug is too narrow when you add a steaming wand into the mix there is not enough room for the milk to move around.
While experienced baristas can create flawless latte art with any milk jug, if you are just starting out you will find that different spout shapes make it easier or harder to create certain designs.
The 2 main spout shapes are classic which are shorter and rounder and shaper spouts which have narrower and more pointed spouts:
The best material for a latte art pitcher is Stainless Steel. Stainless steel helps retain heat and is a very hardy material so can stand up to being heated to high temperatures and washed repeatedly. If you are wanting a milk pitcher without a handle you may find that the jug heats up too much so it would be better to opt for a jug with a Teflon coating.
The final thing to consider is how does the jug look? Is it going to be a piece of coffee equipment that you are proud to leave on display? Does it feel nice to hold when you are steaming and pouring milk? Are you wanting a handle or do you find it easier to pour without a handle? Is this latte art pitcher going to give you the control and precision you need to pour those beautiful designs?
The Best Latte Art Pitchers
Star Coffee Milk Frothing Pitcher
Sizes available: 12 oz, 20 oz, 30 oz
The Star Coffee milk frothing pitcher is a great entry into milk frothing. It is the most affordable latte art milk pitcher on our list. Made of stainless steel this jug is built to last and the company backs that with a lifetime guarantee! It comes in 3 different sizes and also has a handy volume measurement on both sides of the jug so you can accurately measure how much milk you want to froth. Star coffee also throw in a free microfibre cleaning cloth to help you keep the jug nice and shiny. This is a great basic jug at a price you really can’t complain about!
Rattleware Latte Art Pitcher
Sizes available: 12 oz and 20 oz
The Rattleware latte art pitcher is a widely popular pitcher used in both domestic and commercial settings. This is your basic pitcher, made of high quality stainless steel. It has a tapered spout to help with pouring. This is a good option if you are looking for a basic but sturdy pitcher. A word of warning make sure you are buying the actual Rattleware brand pitcher (which has the logo etched into the bottom) and not a knock off which is not nearly as good!
Rhino Stealth Milk Pitcher
Sizes available: 12 oz, 20 oz, 32 oz
The Rhino Stealth Milk pitcher is a great option if you are looking to add a splash of color to your espresso setup! This stylish jug is available in 5 colors: blue, green, black, white and red. The Rhino Stealth is made from thick stainless steel with a teflon finish designed to encourage even milk heating. Perhaps the best thing about the Rhino milk jug is its professional pouring spout. The Rhino spout is renowned around the world for offering superb control over milk pouring speed and placement allowing for clean, crisp latte art. This is a great option if you are looking to add a bit of personality to your setup.
Espro Toroid Milk Jug
Sizes available: 12 oz, 20 oz, 25 oz
The Espro Toroid milk jug is designed with a unique shape to help produce the perfect vortex when you are steaming milk so you can create incredibly fine and consistent microfoam. This is a great Latte art pitcher for a beginner as the design makes it very easy to use. You simply steam the surface of the milk for 1-5 seconds then submerge the steam wand so the milk circulates in the toroid pattern until it reaches your desired temperature. The jug has fill lines in it to help you measure how much milk you need. It also has a larger handle which ensures your hand stays cool when heating the milk. The spout itself is a sharper spout allowing you to pour precisely and with greater detail. This is yet another high quality, durable jug built with tough stainless steel, it will last for years… in fact Espro guarantees it for life! This is the ideal jug for a beginner starting out!
Fellow Eddy Steaming Pitcher
Sizes available: 12 oz and 18 oz
The Fellow Eddy has a stunning design available in Stainless Steel or Graphite- this is the hipsters pitcher. The Eddy Milk pitcher really comes into its own in pouring latte art. It has a unique fluted spout that creates a more precise pour. In addition to this it doesn’t have an outward jutting spout like most other pitchers but rather a sharp front crease. This helps the milk move toward the spout in a seamless motion. The jug is designed with a fluted body that spins the milk more consistently to create silky smooth microfoam. The ribboned handle makes it comfortable to hold any way you want. It also features handy measurement aids inside the jug so you no longer have to eyeball the milk! If you are looking for a comfortable, durable pitcher with a sweet design look no further than the Fellow Eddy.
Barista Swag Latte Art Pitcher
Sizes available: 12 oz, 20 oz
This is one jug where the name says it all… Barista Swag. This jug is for the barista wanting a little swag in their life. Available in 7 bright color options it will definitely add a bit of personality to your kit! The jug has an ultra sharp spout that is really designed for Baristas wanting to do complex latte art. It features a wide handle making it comfortable to hold and pour. This beautiful pitcher is for the Barista wanting a milk jug with a sharp spout for precise pouring.
Motta Europa Milk Frothing Pitcher
Sizes available: 11.8 oz and 17 oz
The Motta Europa Pitcher is considered by many to be “the” milk jug. Developed in association with the Italian Barista Association you will immediately notice that this pitcher is a step above the rest. The Motta has a unique design with a wider base and narrower top half to help produce outstanding microfoam. The spout is designed to make it easy to pour your steamed milk with perfect control. The Motta spout is a deeper spout, and not as sharp as some others on the list so it is not so good for more complex designs. The Motta is a high quality jug that is built to last, with thick walls and a nice weight to it. All Motta jugs have the batch number etched into the base and include a 5 year warranty. It has a beautiful, eye-catching design available in a classic stainless steel, or black, white and red colors. If you are looking for a work of art to grace your benchtop you can’t go past the Motta!
The Final Verdict
So what is the best latte art pitcher? As you can see there are latte art pitchers to suit every personality and the great news is that the price difference between the most budget and best quality is only about $20! We recommend opting for a higher quality latte art pitcher rather than the cheapest. However the rest depends on you! If you are a beginner starting out you might want to try the Espro Toroid whereas if you are looking to up your latte art game you might want to try the Fellow Eddy or Motta Europa. Ultimately it comes down to you! What pitcher feels the best, suits your style and has the kind of spout you are looking for?
If you have a favorite latte art pitcher we would love to hear from you! Comment in the comments below!
What is the best way to practice steaming milk?
Unless you are a barista in training you likely won’t get the opportunity to practice making hundreds of coffees a day! A great way to practice steaming milk without wasting a ton of milk is to use water with a dash of dishwashing liquid. This steams up to a similar consistency to milk and is a great way to perfect the texture of your milk.
What is the best way to practice pouring milk?
If you are wanting to get better at pouring latte art the best way is to practice, practice, practice! A great way to do this without wasting milk is to pour your first coffee and then reuse the coffee by pouring it back into the milk jug and swirling to recombine. You can then pour a bit into your cup and top it with chocolate and then practice your latte art again. You can do this 5-6 times without it affecting the milk texture too much!