Are Cappuccinos Sweet? – Here’s What You May Not Know

Published Categorized as Journal

Are cappuccinos sweet? Kind of! Whether or not a cappuccino is sweet will actually depend on quite a few factors. In this post, we’ll aim to explore those factors while also breaking down the differences between a cappuccino and other types of coffee drinks.

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Table of Contents

white ceramic coffee cup on saucer

Does Cappuccino Taste Sweet?

As we alluded to in the beginning, a cappuccino may sometimes be considered sweet. But it really depends on the ingredients used, who crafted it, and how it was made. It also depends on what you consider “sweet”.

Therefore, whether or not a cappuccino tastes sweet is, actually, highly subjective.

Is Cappuccino Sweet or Bitter?

A cappuccino may not be as sweet as some coffee drinks, but we wouldn’t define it as bitter, either.

Compared to black drip coffee or plain espresso, a cappuccino may taste milky and mildly sweet.

Still, if you’re a fan of heavily sweetened drinks (we’re looking at you frappucino) then a traditional cappuccino may not be your cup of–ahem–tea.

That’s because a cappuccino is made by layering foamed milk on top of espresso. It is literally half (or sometimes one-quarter) steamed milk and espresso.

A cappuccino is (typically) made without the addition of sugar. Some baristas may sprinkle a little cocoa powder or cinnamon on top for added flavoring.

Because of the milk that is added to the base layer of espresso, the coffee’s robust flavor mellows out considerably. This leaves you with a rich, smooth, and slightly sweet-tasting coffee, that shouldn’t taste bitter at all!

Having said this, you should keep in mind that the milk added to cappuccinos won’t make it “sweet” in the traditional sense of the word. Any sweetness you detect in the cappuccino is likely due to the foamed milk that was added to the drink; not added sugar.

Note: Some say that coffee is good for when you’re feeling ill. It can provide you with a jolt of energy and can help soothe a sore throat. If you are drinking coffee for these reasons, consider choosing a cappuccino or drip coffee over sweeter coffee varieties. Sugar can irritate your throat and cause inflammation, which can make you feel worse. Thus, to experience the benefits of drinking coffee while you are sick, we recommend you stick to an unsweetened coffee drink; and a cappuccino would be the perfect fit!

drinking cappuccino

Are You Supposed to Add Sugar to Cappuccino?

No. You aren’t supposed to add sugar to a cappuccino.

But does that stop anyone from trying? It appears not!

There are many restaurants, especially those pertaining to fast food, that adds sugar to their cappuccinos. Even then, however, most cappuccinos at places like Dunkin’ Donuts or McDonald’s still don’t contain much sugar compared to some of their other coffee drinks.

Are Starbucks Cappuccinos Sweet?

Considering that Starbucks is the largest coffee chain in the world, you may be wondering what their cappuccinos taste like. The answer is that Starbucks cappuccinos are not sweet.

The only exception to this is if you ask Starbucks to substitute the milk that tops the cappuccino for another. Many of Starbucks’ non-dairy milks, such as their coconut milk, have added sugars. Therefore, these types of substitutes may make your cappuccino taste sweeter than normal.


How to Order a Sweet Cappuccino

Although most cappuccinos aren’t sweet, you can actually order cappuccinos with a pump or two of your favorite syrup.

To do this, let your barista know ahead of time that you want your cappuccino sweet. This will enable your barista to add the syrup or sweetener at the right time. Adding it afterward may ruin the aesthetics of your cappuccino as you’ll have to stir it vigorously to get the sweetener blended properly.

cappuccinos sweet or bitter

What About Lattes?

Another option is to simply order a latte.

A latte is much sweeter than a cappuccino because a latte contains more steamed milk. Because milk is naturally sweet, it makes the latte taste a bit more “sugary” than a cappuccino.

On top of its already sweet and mild flavor, many lattes are bolstered with flavored syrups and liquid sweeteners. You should be aware, however, that you may need to ask for this. For example, if you order a “latte” you will likely receive just that– a plain milk latte. It will have no added sugar or syrup. However, if you order a Mocha Latte or a Vanilla Latte, you can expect that particular type of coffee to contain added sugar.

Thus, if you want a sweeter drink than a cappuccino, you may want to see if a latte works better for you.

Are Cappuccinos Sweet? Not Really…

Though cappuccinos aren’t generally classified as sweet, you may find some types of cappuccinos tasting sweeter than others. It will really depend on your own palate, as well as the ingredients used by whoever was preparing the drink.

If you like frothy and mellow drinks with a robust coffee flavor, a cappuccino is likely for you. However, if you are looking for something a bit more milky and sweet, you may wish to seek out other options.

Sip on!


Which is sweeter mocha or cappuccino?

A mocha is sweeter than a cappuccino. A mocha is generally made with chocolate or chocolate sauce. Remember that a cappuccino, by default, isn’t very sweet. Therefore, a mocha will win out in this category.

Are iced cappuccinos sweet? 

No, they aren’t. This isn’t to say that an iced cappuccino can’t be sweet; it’s just that they aren’t typically this way. An iced cappuccino will be made using the same espresso-to-milk ratio as would a normal cappuccino. Depending on where you order, you’ll even get “cold foam” added to your drink! And in case you’ve got a major sweet tooth, you’ll be happy to know that lattes come iced, too!  

Is cappuccino sweeter than latte?

A latte is typically much sweeter than your standard cappuccino. So if sweetness is your jam, a latte will be the one to choose! 

Are cappuccinos healthy?

A cappuccino may be healthy, especially if it is free of added sugar. The more sugar and cream that is added to your cappuccino, the worst it’ll be for your waistline.

Categorized as Journal

By Anna

Anna Brooks, the voice behind, is a seasoned writer and editor with an insatiable love for food. While not a professional chef, her culinary adventures and unique insights have captivated readers for years. Anna believes in the transformative power of food, stating it "feeds the soul." Dive into her writings for a mix of inspiration, entertainment, and culinary wisdom. Author Pinterest Facebook Twitter Instagram YouTube Tumblr Reddit Quora

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