Best milk frother 2021: The best stove top, jug and handheld milk frothers from £10

A cappuccino without a luscious layer of foam is no cappuccino at all, which is why we’re constantly on the hunt for the best milk frothers around. Just because you don’t have a fancy, high-pressure steam wand at home, it doesn’t mean you have to go without a silky, frothy coffee. In fact, it’s never been easier to achieve barista-style frothy coffee from your own kitchen thanks to state of the art milk frothers from the likes of Nespresso, Dualit, Smeg and more.

Today’s milk frothers do a surprisingly decent job without taking up a huge chunk of your work surface or costing you a bomb. Whether you’re looking for something handheld, electric or a jug that works on the stove, we’ve sussed out the best milk frothers you can buy – as well as what to look out for – so you can be your very own barista. Below, you’ll find our buying guide to help you find the right milk frother for your needs and budget, or you can simply scroll on for our top picks.

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How to choose the best milk frother for you

What types of milk frother are there?

You don’t have to spend hundreds to get a gorgeous, creamy foam; you can get a decent milk frother for under £10, while even the best come in at under £100. You can break milk frothers down into three major types:

Handheld: these wand-like devices are basically small motorised whisks that aerate milk by working at very high speeds. The upsides are that they’re inexpensive, easy to pop in a drawer and you can use them anywhere as they’re battery operated. They can be used on cold milk or hot and you simply stop whisking when you reach the required consistency, giving more control than other types.

The downside is that if you want your milk hot, you need to heat it manually first, while there’s a knack involved in using the wand. Plus, if you use them regularly, the cost of batteries can mount up. There’s an alternative to the wand – a glass jar with a whisk built into the lid – but we’ve found these are prone to breaking and lack the power to produce a decent foam.

Jug style: these small jugs, which look a bit like a compact kettle, both heat and froth your milk, using a small induction ring in the base of the jug and a built-in whisk. They’re by far the most convenient and easy to use – once you’ve pressed the button, you can just walk away and let the machine do its job. Many come with a range of temperature settings, as well as the ability to choose the volume of foam, depending on whether you want, say, a flat white or cappuccino.

With some, you can heat milk without whisking it (good for hot chocolate) or make cold foam (good for milkshakes). The downsides are that some only let you prepare the milk to one temperature or consistency and some only work well with a small amount of milk.

Stovetop: these consist of a metal jug and frothing pump. You partially fill it with milk, put it on the hob, heat it up, pop the lid on and pump the handle to produce the foam. The upside is ease of use – there’s no need for batteries or electricity and they’re easy to clean, with most parts dishwasher safe. The downside is that producing froth requires more customisation than with other types.

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How easy are milk frothers to clean?

Ideally, your milk frother will be non-stick, with easy-to-clean parts as dried milk requires serious scrubbing. The good news is that most milk frothers are very easy to clean – some can simply be run under a tap, while others can be popped in the dishwasher. The more you use your milk frother, the more you’ll need to clean it – so the latter option is definitely best for coffee addicts.

The best milk frothers to buy

1. Aerolatte To Go: Best cheap handheld milk frother

Price: £10 | Buy now from Lakeland

The first thing the Aerolatte has on its side is the price: it’ll cost you around the same as three cups of coffee from Starbucks. The second is that it’s easy to store – it comes with its own tube and you just bung it in your drawer when not in use. You can take it anywhere and it also gives you a lot of control. Indeed, by controlling the distance the whisk is from the surface of the milk, you get more influence over the froth, which makes it more akin to a steam wand.

But – and it’s a big but – you need to know, or learn to know, what you’re doing as it’s easy to end up with all bubbles, no froth. The milk also needs heating first and you’ll need two AA batteries to make it work.

Key specs – Type: Handheld; Power: Batteries; Clean in a dishwasher: No; Warranty: 2 years (3 at Lakeland); Weight: 99g

Image of aerolatte Milk Frother with Storage Tube, Black, Stainless Steel

£12.95 Buy now amazon_logo.svg

Image of Aerolatte Milk Frother To Go with Travel Storage Case, The Original Steam-Free Frother, Black

$17.03 Buy now amazon_logo.svg

2. Smeg 50’s Retro MFF01BLUK Frother: Best jug milk frother for speedy results

Price: £149 | Buy now from AO