How Do You Make a Lungo - Coffee Recipe

Lungo represents Italian-style coffee that results in a perfect blend of espresso and water.

What is a caffe lungo?

Caffee lungo in the glass

A lungo is an extended espresso prepared with more water. Due to the fact that more water runs through the ground coffee, it is diluted somewhat more than regular espresso shots.

Lanugo means “long” in Italian 🇮🇹

In other words, when making this beverage you will be pulling a long shot. If you want to pull a shorter one, even shorter than espresso, you will end up making a Ristretto coffee. And, if you pull a regular shot (not too short or too long), you will get a regular Espresso.

The word lungo is pronounced lung-go

It is quite similar to English though, we have to admit. The lungo shot does not have as much intensity as espresso and is such a bitter aftertaste. The main culprit for this flavor of coffee is allowing the water to run through the espresso for a lengthy amount of time. With a longer time spent in the espresso machine, the coffee grounds are able to release completely new and unique aromas. At the end of your making process, lungo coffee will be prepared with beautifully shiny crema!

REMEMBER: It takes a combination of the right coffee beans, the quality espresso machine, and proper processing to make a perfect cup of this Italian-style coffee. 

Necessary equipment for making lungo coffee

  1. Whole coffee beans

When you decide to make lungo, make sure you buy the whole coffee beans. However, when it comes to the type of beans, you can choose whichever you prefer. 

  1. Espresso machine 

The best way to make authentic and original lungo is by using an espresso machine. However, if you don’t have one, you can also use a Nespresso machine to make coffee that is similar to the original.

  1. Coffee grinder

If your espresso machine doesn’t have the coffee grinder, you have to get one in order to get fresh coffee beans. 

  1. Filtered water

Any coffee drink should be made with good quality water that was filtered before the actual use.

Lungo coffee recipe

Preparation time: 2 min
Cook time: 0 min
Total time: 2 min


  • 0.25-0.35 oz of whole coffee beans
  • 50-100mL of filtered, hot water

A lungo is prepared in the same way as an espresso. Nevertheless, there is one key difference: the extraction time is longer – usually around one minute to pull. While regular espresso shots are usually an ounce, a lungo shot is usually between 1 ½ ounce to two ounces. The lungo will produce a larger cup of coffee as more water is extracted. Thanks to this method, the bitterness of the coffee is decreased in comparison with espresso and ristretto that have a shorter extraction time.

1️⃣Choose and grind your coffee beans

On the espresso machine or with hot water, preheat your lungo cup. Once that is done, take the measured beans (0.25 oz for a single shot and 0.5 oz for a double shot) and put them directly into a portafilter to grind them as fine as possible.

2️⃣Tampting the coffee grounds

Make sure that the grounded coffee is leveled up by pressing on it firmly using the tamper, until it is evenly and fully compressed. Place the espresso basket (portafilter) on a towel before tamping so you can easily discard used grounds. To make the best lungo shot, you need to straighten and even the coffee grounds as much as possible.

3️⃣Pull the Lungo shot

Press the button to pull the shot after placing the portafilter in the espresso machine. Leave the water running longer than usual for an espresso shot and dispense the shot after around 40 to 50 seconds. In general extraction, time is determined primarily by the type of coffee beans you are using, their grind, as well as the espresso machine’s pressure.

After the shot is pulled, and your cup is filled with Lungo, it’s coffee time!

How to drink lungo coffee?

Lungo coffee in the grey cup on the table


You can drink it however and whenever you want. It is really up to you. Because the Lungo coffee represents the extended version of espresso due to adding hot water, it is served into large cups.

As a result, you are able to retain all of the espresso’s flavors while extending them only by adding water leaving no bitter aftertaste.

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