Have you been to your favorite coffee shop recently and noticed a new type of cold coffee you’ve never tried before? I had a chance to try an iced espresso instead of an iced coffee for the first time and want to tell you about the differences.
Iced espresso and iced coffee are not the same drink. They have different flavors, smells, colors, and textures. Iced espresso is made with a potent shot of espresso, while iced coffee is made from regular brewed coffee and syrup. Iced espresso has more caffeine and a more coffee-flavored taste.
There’s nothing better than a cool coffee drink on a hot summer day.
Let’s see how iced espresso and iced coffee are similar and what makes them different so that you know what you’re ordering the next time you decide to make the switch.
What is Iced Espresso?
A cold coffee drink ideal for hot summer days, iced espresso is either just espresso poured over iced or a mixture of your favorite espresso, syrup, and milk served over ice.
An average Starbucks iced espresso is made with 2 shots of espresso poured over a cup of ice cubes. That’s it. No milk, sugar, or syrup.
If you enjoy the sweeter version of iced coffee drinks then try a Starbucks Iced Shaken Espresso. It’s 3 shots of espresso, 4 pumps of syrup, and a touch of milk.
As with most coffee drinks from Starbucks, you can personalize your iced espresso with decaf or blonde espresso and flavored syrups.
Starbucks differentiates its iced espresso from other coffee shops by shaking the coffee in iced cubes before adding the syrup and milk. This way the flavor and texture of the coffee are even throughout the whole iced espresso.
What is Iced Coffee?
Iced coffee can come in different forms and flavors, but in general, it’s always made by pouring a hot cup of coffee over ice.
Some people prefer sweet iced coffee. This version of the drink is made by adding 2 or 3 pumps of sweet syrup to a cup full of ice and filling the rest of the cup with hot coffee. In almost every case, the resulting drink has a sandy color and a honey-like flavor.
Most coffee shops also offer a version of iced coffee without syrup. It’s just hot black coffee poured into a cup full of ice cubes.
Both iced coffee and iced espresso are served in clear cups and drank through a straw.
Iced Espresso Vs. Iced Coffee
Classic iced coffee is made with syrup and sweeteners in turn reducing the strength of the coffee or in other words subduing its natural flavor. Expect iced coffee to be sweet as candy.
On the other hand, a basic iced espresso isn’t diluted by syrup or milk, instead, it’s cooled by ice. If finished before the ice melts, the espresso flavor is often bold, dark, and caramelly.
Sweetened iced espresso tastes very similar to a classic iced coffee. In large part due to the syrup overpowering the flavor of the espresso. The only noticeable difference between an iced coffee and an iced espresso is the subtle aftertaste of the espresso.
An iced espresso will always have more caffeine than a standard iced coffee. You’re looking at 150-300mg of caffeine, depending on the size of your order.
The amount of caffeine in an iced coffee will vary depending on size. Expect and iced coffee to have anywhere between 120-285mg of caffeine per serving.
The sugar content in your iced coffee drinks is worth paying attention to.
It mixes with caffeine for a really intense boost of energy and alertness.
An iced espresso has 0 grams of sugar since it’s served without any syrups or sweeteners.
Your average iced coffee can have between 11-22 g of sugar per serving.
Keep in mind that the AHA recommends females consume 24 grams and males eat 36 grams of sugar per day.
Why Not Try Both Drinks
If you’re like me and like dark, bold, and natural coffee flavors, you’ll love an iced espresso.
It’s a type of cold coffee that keeps its essence even as it loses its temperature.
On the other hand, if you enjoy lighter flavors, have a sweet tooth, or want a dessert drink, an iced coffee should be your go-to.
The syrups and sweeteners give iced coffee a honey-like flavor.
Most people need to choose between either of the two drinks but should really try both.
Although both drinks have caffeine, expect your iced coffee to give you a bigger kick due to all the sugar. So don’t have one too late in the evening, or you may be staying up all night.
Coffee lovers need to experience the options available at their favorite coffee shop. Don’t get me wrong, it’s good to know what type of coffee you like, but experimenting with new flavors is one joy of life everyone needs to take part in.
You should consider trying both an iced coffee and an iced espresso to see the real value in both.
Each is made from coffee yet provides a different experience in both flavor and texture.
By now you should know the difference between an iced espresso and an iced coffee. They are not the same thing.
You could say that iced espresso is a type of iced coffee, but that would be an oversimplification.
As the name suggests, iced espresso is made from a shot of espresso, and iced coffee is made from brewed coffee.
I always stick to naturally flavored coffee drinks because I enjoy the rich taste of coffee beans, especially espresso. Hence, my go-to tends to be the iced version of the famous drink.
If you’re someone who enjoys the mild taste of coffee, sweet desserts, and candy you’re probably leaning towards an iced coffee.
Try each version of the drink to see which one will be your new favorite.
I’ve always seen coffee as a way of bringing people together. Everywhere I go people seem to enjoy a fresh cup of coffee and that’s what drives my passion. There’s always a new brew to master, and there’s always a new face to enjoy it with. Hitch a ride with me on a coffee-fueled adventure to find a perfect cup.