Milkshake VS Frappe: Differences & Which Is Better?

Coffee shops offer us delicious creamy frappes, meanwhile, but fast food locations and ice cream parlors tend to offer us tasty old-fashioned milkshakes.

Both of these tasty treats are made with milk-based products, and both come with a straw. So, what is the difference? 

Today, we are going to look at milkshakes and frappes, and what separates them. We also want to know if there is a clear better beverage between these two. So, let’s break it down and have a look!  

Milkshake VS Frappe


Milkshakes tend to be thick, and rich, made with ice cream, flavorings, and milk, many often come with a helping of sugar for some additional sweetness.

If you want the optimal texture, you should add double the amount of ice cream as you have milk. So if you use 1/2 a cup of milk, then add a full cup of ice cream! 

For a milkshake, you should also add a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla for every cup of ice cream, or you could also add a tablespoon of chocolate or strawberry syrup.

You can also make milkshakes even better by using flavored ice cream in place of vanilla ice cream. 

With milkshakes, you need no other liquids or ice to make these, they are simple to make and are absolutely divine! 



Frappes are usually coffee-based, typically containing milk, sugar, coffee, and ice. Of course, you can get different types of frappes, but this is the typical construction of your average frappe.

These ingredients are mixed together in a blender to craft a divine, light, and frothy drink. 

Many frappes sold commercially will include thickeners that help to bind the liquid ingredients together with the ice chips. A majority of frappes will also not include ice cream.

However, a vast majority of frappes will rely on the use of coffee shop-styled flavored syrups instead of traditional ice cream toppings. 

Do note that this varies from place to place, as different types of frappes exist, and you can even get some that are fruit based. However, this is the traditional style of trappes.

Similarities Vs Differences

Before we dive into the similarities and differences, it is worth noting that these definitions are not true everywhere.

In MOST places, the difference between frappes and milkshakes is as above. However, in some places, such as Boston as said by, frappes are closer to milkshakes and are less coffee-based. 

In Greece, frappes do not have ice or flavorings, some may even miss out on the milk! So, be aware that while milkshakes are standard everywhere, the definition of a frappe can differ depending on where you go.


  • Milkshakes are made with syrups, ice cream & flavorings. 
  • Frappes are primarily and traditionally coffee based.
  • Milkshakes are mostly dairy.
  • Frappes often contain dairy, but no more than an iced coffee, & some do not contain milk products at all.
  • Frappes use ice, whereas milkshakes do not.

Which Is Better?


Choosing which is better, a milkshake or a frappe depends on your personal tastes. In terms of healthiness, frappes are the better option due to less fats, sugars, and calories.

However, frappes are still not always very healthy, with some frappes being even more caloric. 

It really depends on the type of frappe, or milkshake, who makes it, and what it is made from!

Frappe Vs Milkshake Calories

Out of the two, milkshakes notoriously have the higher calorie count. Your average milkshake will have more than 300 calories in it.

This is usually partly due to the very high percentage of saturated fats in milkshakes. If you were to buy a medium-sized chocolate milkshake from McDonald’s you could expect 364 kcal! 

A coffee frappe has fewer calories. A big 250 ml glass of a coffee frappe will usually contain around 288 kcal. In true comparison to the McDonald’s milkshake,  the regular size of the Strawberries & Cream‘ frappe sold by Mcdonald’s contains 277 kcal.

This just shows how many fewer calories frappes contain, as even a large ‘Strawberries & Cream’ frappe sold by McDoanlds, contains 293 kcal. So, Milkshakes are definitely the most caloric of the two!

(That being said, the Caramel Iced Frappe sold at McDonald’s contains even more calories than their milkshakes! At 399 kcal for a large!)


Is A Frappe A Smoothie Or A Milkshake?

Frappes are considered to be much alike both smoothies or milkshakes. However, they are different from both. Frappes are not as ice cream-heavy as milkshakes, but they are not healthy or fruit-based like smoothies. They also have more foam than smoothies or milkshakes.

What Is The Difference Between Frappe And Smoothie?

Frappes are different from smoothies. While they are made using a blender, they are blended a lot longer and require a substantial amount of roam. Sometimes frappes will even be made using cocktail shakers.

Is A Frappe Just A Blended Latte?

Frappes can, in some cases, be an iced blended latte, however, it depends on the frappe. Frappes are also made using blenders, which lattes are not.

Is A Frappe Just Blended Coffee?

Frappes, in some ways, are blended coffee. However, they also have a more substantial foam. Frappes' closest relative would be the iced coffee.

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