How Many Seconds for Lungo Espresso?

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Do you ever wonder how long it takes to make a perfect lungo espresso? This longer version of the classic espresso shot offers a more intense flavor profile, but timing is everything.

In this article, we’ll delve into the details of brewing lungo espresso – from the recommended extraction time to tips for achieving that smooth taste at home. Read on if you’re ready for an enlightening coffee journey!

How Many Seconds for Lungo Espresso?

For a lungo espresso, the extraction time typically ranges between 30 to 40 seconds.

This extended extraction allows more water to pass through the coffee grounds compared to a standard espresso, which usually takes about 20-30 seconds. The extra time and water give the lungo its distinctive character, yielding a coffee that’s less concentrated but captures more subtle notes from the beans.

The ideal extraction time can vary based on factors such as grind size, coffee bean type, and individual machine specifications. Regularly tasting and adjusting your method ensures that you achieve a lungo that suits your personal preferences.

Key Takeaways

  • Lungo espresso is a type of coffee that is brewed for a longer amount of time compared to regular espresso, resulting in a larger and more diluted drink.
  • The recommended shot time for lungo espresso is typically around 4 to 6 seconds longer than regular espresso, resulting in a stronger and more intense flavor profile.
  • Factors that can affect the shot time include grind size, coffee quantity, water temperature, pressure settings, preinfusion time, coffee freshness, equipment maintenance, altitude and humidity conditions, and bean origin/roast level.

Understanding Lungo Espresso

Lungo espresso is a type of coffee that is brewed for a longer amount of time compared to regular espresso, resulting in a larger and more diluted drink.

What is a Lungo Espresso?

A Lungo Espresso is a kind of coffee drink. You make it with an espresso machine. But you use more water to make it last longer than other types of espresso. The name “Lungo” means long in Italian.

It’s called this because we take more time to brew it, not like normal espressos which take around 25 seconds only. To get the right taste, we need different coffee beans that are ground in a special way.

This makes the water flow faster when brewing.

How is it different from regular espresso?

A lungo espresso is different from regular espresso in a few ways. First, the extraction time for a lungo is longer than for a regular espresso. While a normale espresso is typically brewed for around 25 seconds, a lungo takes longer to brew.

This means that more water passes through the coffee grounds during the brewing process, resulting in a larger volume of coffee.

The taste of a lungo also differs from regular espresso. Because it has a longer extraction time, more of the flavors and aromas are extracted from the coffee beans. This can result in a stronger and more bitter flavor profile compared to regular espresso shots.

How does it taste?

A lungo espresso has a stronger and more bitter flavor compared to a regular espresso. The longer extraction time allows for more of the coffee’s flavors and aromas to be extracted, resulting in a more intense taste.

It has a bold and robust flavor profile, with hints of chocolate or caramel notes depending on the roast. The extended brewing process gives it a smooth and rich texture that lingers on your palate.

Whether enjoyed as is or used as a base for other drinks, the taste of lungo espresso is sure to satisfy any coffee lover looking for a bolder and more pronounced coffee flavor.

Brewing Lungo Espresso

The recommended shot time for lungo espresso is typically around 60 seconds.

Recommended shot time for lungo espresso

A lungo espresso is brewed for a longer time than a regular espresso. The recommended shot time for a lungo is usually around 4 to 6 seconds. However, this can vary depending on how strong or weak you want the flavor to be.

It’s important to find the right balance so that the coffee doesn’t become too bitter or over-extracted. Experimenting with different shot times can help you achieve the perfect lungo espresso according to your taste preferences.

Factors that can affect the shot time

Factors that can affect the shot time:

  1. Grind size: A finer grind will slow down the extraction time, while a coarser grind will speed it up.
  2. Coffee quantity: Using more coffee grounds can increase the extraction time, while using less can decrease it.
  3. Water temperature: Higher water temperatures can result in a faster extraction, while lower temperatures can slow it down.
  4. Pressure settings: Adjusting the pressure on your espresso machine can affect the flow rate and thus alter the shot time.
  5. Preinfusion time: Preinfusion, which involves wetting the coffee grounds before extraction, can impact the overall shot time.
  6. Coffee freshness: Freshly roasted and ground coffee tends to extract faster compared to older, stale coffee.
  7. Equipment maintenance: Regular cleaning and maintenance of your espresso machine can ensure optimal performance and consistent shot times.
  8. Altitude and humidity: These factors can influence how quickly water is absorbed by the coffee grounds during extraction.
  9. Bean origin and roast level: Different beans from various regions and roast levels may require adjustments to achieve desired shot times.
  10. Personal preference: Some people prefer longer or shorter shot times based on their taste preferences, leading to variations in brewing duration.

Tips for achieving the perfect lungo espresso

To achieve the perfect lungo espresso, follow these tips:

  1. Use a coarser grind: Grinding the coffee beans slightly coarser than you would for a normale espresso allows for a faster flow rate, resulting in a longer extraction time.
  2. Adjust the shot time: Experiment with different shot times to find your preferred strength and flavor. Aim for a brewing time of around 4 to 6 seconds.
  3. Use the right amount of water: Since lungo shots require double the amount of water compared to normale espresso shots, make sure to adjust your machine settings accordingly or manually measure out the water.
  4. Pay attention to preinfusion: Some espresso machines have preinfusion settings that moisten the grounds before extraction, which can enhance the flavors of your lungo shot. Take advantage of this feature if available.
  5. Monitor shot volume: Lungo shots are typically larger in size, so keep an eye on how much coffee is being extracted and adjust if needed to achieve your desired cup size.
  6. Enjoy as soon as possible: Lungo shots can become bitter if left sitting too long, so it’s best to enjoy them right away after brewing.
  7. Experiment with different coffee beans: Different coffee varieties and blends can bring out unique flavors in your lungo shot, so don’t be afraid to explore and find your favorites.

Lungo Espresso vs Other Espresso Variations

Lungo espresso is different from ristretto and normale in terms of shot duration, cup size, and flavor intensity. Read on to discover how they compare!

Lungo vs ristretto

A lungo espresso and a ristretto espresso are two different types of coffee drinks. A lungo is made by extracting more water through the coffee grounds, resulting in a longer extraction time and a larger cup size.

A ristretto is made by restricting the amount of water that passes through the grounds, resulting in a shorter extraction time and a smaller cup size. While both have their own unique flavors, a lungo tends to be stronger and more bitter compared to a ristretto.

So if you prefer a larger cup with intense flavor, go for lungo; but if you prefer a smaller cup with concentrated flavors, try out ristretto instead.

Lungo vs normale

A lungo espresso is different from a normale espresso in terms of extraction time and flavor. While a normale espresso typically has an extraction time of around 25 seconds, a lungo has a longer extraction time, usually taking about 4 to 6 seconds more.

This extra brewing time allows for more flavors and aromas to be extracted from the coffee, resulting in a stronger and more intense taste compared to a normale espresso. Additionally, the volume of a lungo shot is double that of a normale espresso shot, using double the amount of water.

So if you prefer your coffee with a bolder flavor and enjoy sipping on larger cups, then you might prefer a lungo over a normale espresso.

Lungo in milk-based drinks

Lungo shots can also be used in milk-based drinks, such as lattes or cappuccinos. The stronger and more intense flavor of a lungo espresso pairs well with the creamy texture of milk.

When combined with steamed milk, the bitterness of the lungo creates a balanced and flavorful beverage. The longer extraction time allows for more coffee flavors to come through, enhancing the overall taste experience when mixed with frothy milk.

Whether you prefer your lungo shot on its own or in a delicious latte, it’s a versatile option for those who enjoy bold coffee flavors.


The brewing time for a lungo espresso can vary, but it usually takes around 4 to 6 seconds to pull. This longer extraction time allows for a stronger and more intense flavor compared to a regular espresso.

Whether enjoyed on its own or used as a base for other coffee drinks, lungo espresso offers a rich and robust taste that is sure to satisfy any coffee lover.


How long does it take to make a lungo espresso?

A lungo espresso takes more time than a normal shot, usually about 50-60 seconds for maximum flavor.

Can I make a lungo espresso at home with my Nespresso machine?

Yes! You can use your Nespresso machine to brew the perfect lungo by adjusting the brewing time and coffee ratio for the Lungo recipe.

What is the difference between an espresso and a long or ‘lungo’ shot?

An Espresso Lungo uses more water in extraction, often double that of typical espresso shots, making it taste less strong but still full of caffeine.

What needs special attention when preparing a Lungo shot?

When preparing a Lungo Shot you must watch carefully over its duration, cup size and the brewing time as this type of coffee requires specifics for each factor.

Who can help me understand better how to prepare an excellent lungo at home?

You could learn from experienced barista’s tutorials online or ask them directly if you have any questions about making an Espresso Lungo.

About the Author:
Oliver Bennett, a seasoned barista, focuses on the technical aspects of coffee-making. His journey from local cafes to specialty coffee shops has equipped him with skills in the science of coffee, from grind size to latte art. Oliver's articles and how-to videos delve into brewing techniques and coffee science, fostering a community of home baristas and elevating the home coffee experience.