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The home barista

HOW TO MAKE A CAPPUCCINO? The secrets to prepare it in the best way!

HOW TO MAKE A CAPPUCCINO? The secrets to prepare it in the best way!
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Cappuccino is, with no doubt, one of the most known and loved beverages, worldwide. With its soft and velvety foam and that special hint of coffee, cappuccino is a true must. Do you know how to prepare it at home, just as if you were in a coffee shop? Let’s discover together the secrets to follow if you want to make the best cappuccino ever…just like a true home barista!

How to prepare cappuccino at home

The first secret for a velvety milk froth is about the type of milk. It should have at least 3% of proteins and 3,5% of fats. In fact, proteins incorporate air and make the froth velvety, while fats makes it steady and homogeneous.

Our second advice is about milk temperature. For an optimal result, milk should be cold, straight out of the fridge (around 5° C – 41 ° F). In this way, there is enough time before reaching the correct temperature and obtain a creamy and dense texture.

Which milk is the best?

The tradition requires the use of whole cow milk, but it is possible to make cappuccino with semi-skimmed or lactose-free milk, and many vegetable drinks. If you are using one of these options, please check the content of proteins and fats. It is crucial to make a perfect cream.

How to make a perfect cappuccino with a manual espresso machine

How to froth milk and make a cappuccino, at home, as you were in an Italian bar? Let’s take a look at Gaggia innovative solutions that make you feel like a true home barista.

Manual machines are the best option if you would like to make cappuccino foam like a pro, and relive a ritual at home. Just choose between two tools: the classic pannarello and the professional steam wand. You can even try “latte art” and create beautiful drawings with milk foam.

If you are not an expert yet, we suggest choosing the classic pannarello. It will produce a compact milk froth, in an easy and immediate way. On the other side, if you prefer to froth milk in a more professional way, opt for the professional steam wand. Thanks to its functioning, this tool froths milk perfectly, and the result is a velvety and homogeneous foam.

Now, let’s discover the tips to make a flawless cappuccino!

Prepare the machine

It is crucial to follow a few steps in order to make a perfect milk foam for your cappuccino:

Turn on the machine a couple of minutes before using it. In this way, it will heat properly.

► Then, select the “steam function” – depending on the model you have, by clicking on the button or by turning the knob.

► When the corresponding light turns on, the machine is ready.

► Just like a pro barista will do, turn counterclockwise the steam knob (which is on the side), to dispense any extra residues of water and condensation. Collect them in a container, to remove once finished.

Rotate the knob back to the original position.

Make the milk foam

Now, it is time to free your inner barista.

Fill a third of a milk jug with cold milk or a vegetable drink of your choice.

Immerse the pannarello ora steam wand in the jug. It needs to be just a few millimeters below the milk surface, and close to the sides. In this way, you will produce a perfect swirl.

Rotate the steam knob (placed on the side), counterclockwise.

Gently move the jug up and down, so you could froth and heat the milk in the best way.

► Once you have reached the desired result, rotate the steam knob clockwise to stop dispensing steam. Remember to turn off the “steam function”.

The barista tip": place the jug with frothed milk on the counter and let it set for around 30 seconds. In this way, the texture will become even.

Prepare the cappuccino

► Prepare the espresso in a cappuccino cup.

► Take the jug with frothed milk and revivea the froth with a delicate rotary movement.

Pour the milk on the espresso.

► If you fancy it, sprinkle a bit of cocoa powder or cinnamon on top. Your cappuccino is ready!

How to make a perfect cappuccino with a superautomatic espresso machine

If you prefer a fully automatic machine and you can’t say no to a delightful cappuccino, Gaggia has many options for you! Here below we share with you the steps to get a flawless cup, just as it was made by a barista!

The Gaggia fully auto machines have different technologies to prepare an incredible cappuccino. Now, the available milk systems are: the integrated milk carafe, the new CAPPinCUP, the automatic cappuccinatore, the steam wand and the pannarello.

Let’s dig deeper and discover these milk solutions in details.

Integrated milk carafe

Integrated milk carafe

The integrated carafe is available with Gaggia Accademia, Babila, Velasca Prestige, Cadorna Prestige and Magenta Prestige. Here below, the simple steps to follow to get a perfect cappuccino:


Select “cappuccino” from the menu.


► Depending on the machine you have, you could set and personalise the milk quantity, the temperature and the milk foam level.


► Click to confirm and start the brewing process. The carafe will froth the milk twice for a perfect foam.


► Right after that, the machine will dispense coffee (espresso). If you use a glass cup you could admire the beautiful nuances of this drink!

CAPPinCUP system


Fill a container or bottle (if you own a Gaggia Naviglio Milk) or the external included carafe (if you own a Gaggia Cadorna Milk or Magenta Milk) with cold milk.


► Be sure that the silicone tube is well inserted into the container/carafe.


► Select “cappuccino” anda click the button to start dispensing it.


► The one-touch CAPPinCUP system draws milk through the suction tube, froths it and delivers a perfect result in your cup. Then, the machine dispenses the espresso.


Extreme ease of use, no splashes while brewing and no need to move the cup from under the coffee spouts.


Naviglio Deluxe is the only Gaggia espresso machine that has this system. For a tasty and velvety cappuccino, just follow these easy instructions:

Fill a container with cold milk.

Put the silicone tube inside it.

► Now, prepare an espresso directly into a cappuccino cup. Just click on the specific button.

► Once ready, move the cup from under the coffee spouts and place it under the automatic milk frother. Click on the button to start frothing. The system will take milk via the tube, froths it thanks to its patented cyclonic chamber and dispense it. The cappuccino is ready!

Professional steam wand

Steam Wand

A fully automatic machine, with a professional steam wand? Yes! Magenta Plus will make you live a truly unique experience. Are you ready?

► Take a milk jug and fill it with cold milk. Do not fill it completely.


► Select the “steamfunction from the beverages menu, and wait a few seconds. Once the machine is ready, put the steam wand inside the milk jug. Keep the jug diagonally and be sure that the steam wand does not touch the bottom nor the sides of the jug. Gently move the jug up and down to create a swirl.


► Leave the jug on the counter. In the meantime, prepare the espresso in a cappuccino cup.


Revive the emulsion with delicate movements and pour it on the espresso. Your cappuccino is ready to be tasted! Don’t you feel like a true home barista?



A manual and classic approach, which is fast and easy to use. The Gaggia machines with this manual tool are Gaggia Naviglio, Velascae Besana.

► Take a jug and fill it with cold milk. Do not fill it completely.


► Now, immerse the pannarello into the milk, and keep it a bit far from the bottom of the jug. The jug needs to be placed diagonally.


► Select the “steam” function. Keep the jug diagonally and move it up and down to make a consistent swirl and to warm the milk evenly.


► Once the foam is ready, let it rest. Prepare the espresso in a cappuccino cup, by clicking the specific button.


Revive the milk froth with delicate movements and pour it on the espresso. A few easy steps, and you will have an amazing cappuccino.

Now you know all the secrets to make a perfect cappuccino, at home, just as you were a true home barista. With a Gaggia manual or a fully automatic machine, you will obtain incredible results.

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