Breve Vs. Latte: Compare These Popular Starbucks Coffees

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Today we will discuss Breve Vs. Latte.Coffee lovers have plenty of options when visiting Starbucks. Two customer favorites are the breve and the latte. While these milk-based espresso drinks look similar, they have some essential differences that customize the coffee experience.

Understanding what sets these two popular Starbucks coffee beverages apart can help you decide which best suits your preferences. This guide compares breve vs latte, including ingredients, calories, price, and tips for ordering your customized Starbucks coffee drink.

With an extensive menu of espresso drinks, Starbucks offers coffee lovers many indulgent choices. Two customer favorites are the breve and latte. While these milk-based coffees appear similar in the cup, they have distinct ingredients, textures, calories, and price differences.

Understanding how to compare a Starbucks breve vs a latte allows you to decide which drink best suits your preferences. This guide explores the essential contrasts between these two popular Starbucks coffee beverages.

Learn to differentiate a breve and latte, from the type of milk used to tips for customizing your ideal Starbucks coffee experience.

What Is A Breve?

Breve Vs. Latte

A breve is an espresso drink made with steamed half and half. The critical ingredient setting it apart from other coffee drinks is the half and half, a dairy mixture containing around 10% to 18% milk fat.

Half and half give a breve a rich, creamy texture and mild sweetness compared to regular milk. The breve was created in Seattle in the 1990s and grew popular across coffee shops in the Pacific Northwest.

The breve serves as a middle ground between a milk latte and a foam cappuccino. Starbucks breves contain:

  • 1 or 2 shots of espresso
  • Steamed half and half
  • The light layer of foam on top

Breves highlights the flavor of the espresso, with the half-and-half adding a lush, velvety mouthfeel. The milkfat content is higher than a latte, making it a more decadent coffee drink option.

What Is A Latte?

A latte is an espresso drink made with steamed milk and topped with foamed milk. Lattes first emerged in Italy in the late 1950s and 1960s. The additional steamed milk is the critical ingredient differentiating them from other espresso drinks.

Lattes contain more milk than cappuccino, resulting in a richer texture. Unlike a breve made with half and half, traditional lattes use 2% reduced fat or whole milk. Starbucks lattes contain:

  • 1 or 2 shots of espresso
  • Steamed milk
  • A light layer of foamed milk on top

The steamed milk softens the espresso’s acidity for a mellow, well-balanced flavor. Lattes highlight the natural sweetness of the milk while retaining the espresso as the primary taste.

Breve vs Latte: Key Differences

While breves and lattes seem almost identical at first glance, some key differences set them apart:



Espresso and steamed half and half


Espresso and steamed milk

The half and half in a breve contains 10-18% milkfat for a more decadent, creamier drink than a traditional latte made with regular milk.

Calories and Fat

Breve Vs. Latte


Higher in calories and fat due to the half-and-half


Lower in calories and fat than a breve

For example, a 12 oz Starbucks breve with 2% milk has about 185 calories and 16g fat, while a 12 oz latte with 2% milk has about 150 calories and 8g fat.Also, see more about Best Coffee Maker For An Rv.



Rich, velvety, neutral flavor highlighting espresso


Sweet, creamy taste with milk being more prominent

The half-and-half allows the breve to focus on the espresso taste, while the latte balances milk and espresso flavors.



Typically costs more due to the half-and-half


Lower in price than a breve

For example, a 12 oz Starbucks breve costs between $4.75-$5.25, while a 12 oz latte costs between $3.95-$4.75. Prices vary by location.

How To Order A Breve Vs Latte At Starbucks

Breve Vs. Latte

Both breves and lattes can be customized based on your preferences for espresso shots, milk type, flavorings, and toppings. Here are some ordering tips:


Choose between short (8 oz), tall (12 oz), grande (16 oz), or venti (20 oz) sizes.

Espresso Shots

Opt for 1, 2, or 3 espresso shots depending on the desired intensity.

Milk Type

For Breves 

Select half and half or ask for a percentage like a breve with 18% milk fat.

For Lattes

Choose whole, 2%, nonfat, soy, almond, or oat milk.


Pick syrups (like vanilla, caramel, or pumpkin spice) or chocolate powder.


Add whipped cream, chocolate shavings, or spices like cinnamon.

5 Tips For The Perfect Breve Or Latte

Follow these tips for best results when ordering a breve or latte:

Specify temperature if you prefer it to be extra hot or warm but not scalding. This affects the flavor balance.

Ask for an extra shot if you like a strong espresso kick. Or request fewer shots for a smoother coffee taste.

Sample different milks like soy or almond to find your perfect match with the espresso.

Order it “upside down” by placing the espresso shots on top to help maintain the crema foam.

Ask for light or no foam if you don’t want a frothy layer on your breve or latte. Also, see more about How Much Caffeine Is In A Tablespoon Of Instant Coffee?.

(Breve Vs. Latte)Frequently Asked Questions

Is A Breve Healthier Than A Latte?

No, breves are higher in calories and fat than lattes due to the half and half. Lattes made with nonfat or low-fat milk are healthier than breves.

Why Are Breves More Expensive Than Lattes?

Breves cost more because half and half are more expensive than regular milk. Specialty milk alternatives like soy or almond milk can also increase the price.

Which Has More Caffeine, A Breve Or A Latte?

They contain the same amount of caffeine when made with equal espresso shots. Adjust the images to control caffeine levels.

Can You Make A Breve With Non-Dairy Milk?

Baristas can steam alternatives like soy, coconut, or oat milk to make a non-dairy breve. But it won’t have the same rich texture as with half and half.

Is A Breve Considered Keto Or Paleo Diet Friendly?

Yes, breves without added sugar are lower in carbs and fit into a keto or paleo diet. However, the higher fat and calorie content may concern some dieters


In conclusion, Starbucks breves and lattes give coffee enthusiasts creamy, café-style options. Breves highlight espresso with the richness of half and half, while lattes balance the espresso and milk flavors.

Customize your drink with dairy or non-dairy milk, flavorings, toppings, and temperature or size to craft your perfect Starbucks coffee indulgence. Use this breve vs. latte comparison to select your new favorite. 

Both breves and lattes are popular coffee bar staples. Deciding between the two depends on whether you prefer a breve’s more affluent, creamier profile or the more well-rounded latte.

Customize your Starbucks coffee drink with different milk options, flavors, and toppings to craft your perfect coffee indulgence. Enjoy your ideal combination of espresso, steamed milk, and luscious foam, whether you select a breve, latte, or other specialty drink. Luxurious Starbucks espresso drink.

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