About This Iced Pistachio Latte
This iced pistachio latte is a fancy copycat of Starbucks’ famous, seasonal pistachio latte! Using pistachio cream in the latte makes a coffee drink that is creamy, nutty, flavorful, decadent, and delicious. While Starbucks uses pistachio syrup to make their lattes, I used pistachio cream for mine. Pistachio cream is similar to Nutella. However, it is made with pistachios and milk powder instead of chocolate and hazelnuts!
What does a pistachio latte taste like?
Looking at Starbucks site, their pistachio latte recipe contains “pistachio sauce” and “salted brown butter topping.” It sounds intense! But real talk: when I had it in real life, the flavors were pretty subtle. It tasted like a coffee drink with a slightly subtle, nutty pistachio flavor.
My iced pistachio latte recipe tastes pretty similar. It tastes like your favorite iced coffee, but with a subtle pistachio flavor. The pistachio cream isn’t overly sweet either. In fact, I’d say that this drink is less sweet than an iced caramel latte.
What’s in a pistachio latte?
Starbucks makes their pistachio lattes with espresso, milk, “pistachio sauce” and a salted brown butter topping. This iced pistachio latte recipe is made with espresso, milk, and pistachio cream.
In addition to pistachios, the pistachio cream contains milk powder and sugar. The milk powder and sugar is probably similar to the ingredients in Starbucks’ pistachio sauce.
Why You Should Make This Recipe
Here are all the reasons to make this iced pistachio latte:
This iced pistachio latte is a fun, easy recipe to switch up your morning coffee routine.
I love finding new ways to switch up my morning coffee routine. Whether it’s trying new recipes like dalgona coffee or adding new flavors like in this iced pistachio latte, it keeps things fresh and exciting!
This iced pistachio latte is a “fancy” copycat of Starbucks’ famous, seasonal latte.
I say “fancy” in quotation marks because pistachio cream could be considered a rare, hard-to-find, specialty gourmet ingredient. But the truth is that I found my jar of pistachio cream at Costco. AND it cost less than the organic peanut butter at my regular supermarket!
Learn more about this magic ingredient in the Ingredients and Substitutions section below.
However, this iced pistachio latte is easier to put together than Starbucks’ pistachio latte.
Looking at Starbucks’ ingredient list for their pistachio latte, I realized I would have to make many of its components from scratch. Like their pistachio sauce and brown butter topping. That’s on top of making the espresso and putting the drink together, too! It seemed like a lot of work for one latte.
Using pistachio cream simplifies their recipe a LOT. The pistachio cream gives this homemade version a similar texture, flavor, and sweetness. And all you need to do is add a scoop to your iced latte. That’s it! Really.
Ingredients and Substitutions
Now that I’ve convinced you to make this iced pistachio latte, here’s everything you need to make it:
Shopping List for Iced Pistachio Latte Recipe
- pistachio cream
- dairy or plant-based milk (but preferably 2% dairy milk)
And let’s talk about some key ingredients and potential substitutions:
You need 1 Tablespoon pistachio cream to make an iced pistachio latte.
What is pistachio cream?
Pistachio cream is similar to Nutella, but without the chocolate and made with pistachios instead of hazelnuts! However, don’t confuse it with nut butter. While nut butter tends to be made exclusively from nuts, pistachio cream contains other ingredients like sugar, milk powder, and olive oil. These ingredients give the cream an extra smooth and velvety texture.
Seriously—it’s so good, I can eat the stuff by the spoonful!
Where can you buy pistachio cream?
I found a huge jar of Pisti Pistachio Cream at my local Costco. Doing so is what inspired this recipe! But you can also find smaller (but more expensive, ugh) jars online on Amazon.
I don’t want to buy pistachio cream. Can I make my own pistachio butter instead?
Technically yes, but I’m not sure I recommend it. I mentioned before that pistachio cream is different from pistachio nut butter. Pistachio cream contains other ingredients like milk powder, sugar, and oil to give it its extra creamy, sweet, and luscious texture.
Pistachio butter, especially the homemade kind, will be a lot more chunky and have the texture of a natural chunky peanut butter. It also won’t be as sweet. While you can still make an iced pistachio latte with it, your drink will probably be less sweet than mine. It will also be gritty and nutty, since homemade butters tend to be chunky.
But if you insist, you can look up a recipe for homemade pistachio butter and give it a try!
I don’t love pistachios. What can I use instead of pistachio cream?
Wait, what? Why are you on this recipe for an iced pistachio latte then?
All joking aside, no worries! You can easily replace the pistachio cream with the same amount of another kind of spread like Nutella, nut butter, or even a cookie butter like Speculoos. The world is your oyster!
Just note that your latte will no longer be a pistachio latte and instead be flavored with whatever you replaced it with. That should go without saying, but you should see some of the questions and comments I get on Hummingbird High.
You need 1 cup milk to make an iced pistachio latte.
The Best Kind of Milk For An Iced Pistachio Latte
Starbucks typically makes their drinks with 2% dairy milk unless otherwise specified. If you’re looking to recreate more classic Starbucks drink experience, I recommend using 2% dairy milk!
Can I use a plant-based milk?
Absolutely! I recommend a nut-based milk like almond to complement the pistachio cream flavors. If you can find it, you can also use pistachio milk to make an iced double pistachio latte!
Other plant-based milks that work well in iced pistachio latte? I personally love the pistachio cream with coconut milk and oat milk. Coconut milk adds a subtle tropical flavor to the drink, while oat milk enhances the pistachio’s nutty flavor!
You need ½ cup ice to make an iced pistachio latte.
I don’t like iced coffee. Can I make this pistachio latte hot?
Yes, absolutely! If you want to make this iced pistachio latte a hot drink, it’s easy to do. Simply warm up the milk (doing so in a microwave is completely fine). Follow the recipe’s instructions to combine the pistachio cream, milk, and espresso. There’s no need to use ice!
You need 1 (1-ounce) shot of espresso to make an iced pistachio latte.
The Best Way To Make Espresso To Make Lattes At Home
In my opinion, the best way to make espresso at home involves the following specialty tools:
- An espresso machine. I used this Cafe Appliances semi-automatic espresso machine to make my espresso, but I also hear good things about this Breville semi-automatic espresso machine.
- A coffee pod machine. I hear good things about the Nespresso coffee pod machines (specifically, the Nespresso Vertuo by Breville). They can generate a similar amount of pressure to semi-automatic espresso machines.
- A moka pot. If I had a moka pot, I probably would use this 3-cup moka pot by Bialetti. This is a great option for somebody who doesn’t want to invest in an expensive, single-use tool. Unlike the machines, you make the espresso in the moka pot on a stovetop. They are much smaller in size and can be easily stored away in a cupboard, too!
Note that the coffee brewed in a moka pot is not technically espresso. Although it makes strong coffee, it’s not brewed with the same amount of pressure that’s required in an espresso machine.
If you’re interested in the pros and cons between these espresso-making tools, I highly suggest checking out the following articles:
- “The Best Espresso Machine For Beginners” in The New York Times Wirecutter
- “The Best Espresso Machines for Beginners, Coffee Nerds, and Everyone in Between” in Bon Appetit
Can I use instant espresso to make an iced pistachio latte?
Absolutely! The most commonly available instant espresso in supermarkets is Medaglia D’Oro Espresso Instant Dark Roast Coffee. I frequently use it in my recipes! Follow the instructions on the jar to make 1 ounce of espresso.
Can I add another shot to this iced pistachio latte recipe?
Absolutely! Feel free to add as many shots of espresso to your iced pistachio latte to customize it. However, 3+ shots of espresso will start to affect the flavor of the drink. It will be more bitter and less flavorful.
Can I use coffee instead of espresso?
Yes, with reservations. Coffee isn’t as strong as espresso. Using it as a 1 for 1 replacement for the espresso in this latte will result in a drink that’s less caffeinated and less coffee flavored.
But it’s still possible! You’ll just need to brew a REALLY strong cup of coffee. I recommend using a moka pot to do so.
How To Make An Iced Pistachio Latte
The video below shows the basic steps to make an iced pistachio latte from scratch:
@hummingbirdhigh can you make a pistachio latte from pistachio cream from costco? yes, yes you can. #coffee #costcofinds #costcobuys #recipe #coffeetiktok ♬ Forever – Labrinth
Best Recipe Tips
Best Styling Tip
- When spreading the pistachio cream in the glass, use a small rubber spatula to “swoop” the pistachio cream across the bottom and up the sides of the glass. Doing so makes a pretty drink, but also distributes the cream more evenly.
If you’d like to see a visual of this technique, watch the video above. I used this rubber spatula to spread the pistachio cream.
Best Serving Tip
- To serve the iced pistachio latte, serve with a straw. Use the straw to stir and scrape the pistachio cream into the drink before enjoying.
More Coffee Drink Recipes
More Pistachio Cream Recipes
Iced Pistachio Latte Recipe
For the Iced Pistachio Latte
- 1 Tablespoon pistachio cream
- 1 cup (8 ounces or 227 grams) cold milk (preferably 2%)
- ½ cup ice
- 1 (1-ounce) shot espresso
For the Iced Pistachio Latte
- First, swirl the pistachio cream. Scrape the pistachio cream into the bottom of a clear, 12-ounce glass. Use a small rubber spatula or spoon to spread the cream across the bottom and up the sides of the glass.
- Serve immediately. Pour the milk into the glass, add the ice, then pour the espresso on top. Serve immediately with a straw.
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Over the past several years of running Hummingbird High, I kept a crucial aspect of my life hidden from my readers: I had a full-time, extremely demanding job in the tech world. In my debut cookbook, Weeknight Baking, I finally reveal the secrets to baking delicious desserts on a tight schedule.