Ah, coffee… That lovely hot stuff that gets us out of bed every morning. What would we do without it? It smells exhilarating, tastes like life itself, and gives you that kick of caffeine in the morning so that you can grind through your day. However, any coffee lover will tell you that not all coffee was made equal; and neither are all coffee makers. In this article, we will discuss the 15 best coffee makers money can buy, from French Press to Espresso to Drip: you will find your ideal coffee companion here.
You might be wondering, well, what’s the difference? Doesn’t *any* coffee maker do the job? Well, yes and no. You can get a relatively consumable caffeinated beverage out of any coffee maker on the market, but getting a *good* one can be a different story. So what makes a good cup of coffee?
- Speed: How long it takes to make a cup of coffee can be the difference between a great cup of coffee and a cup of undrinkable swill. According to the Specialty Coffee Association, brew times must be in between the time frame of four to eight minutes: any shorter, and your coffee is under-extracted; any longer and your coffee is over-brewed and bitter.
- Temperature: Brewing temperature is one of the best tells of a good or bad coffee maker. Brewing at a low temperature will result in sour, under-extracted coffee while brewing at a temperature that is too high will result in too much of the coffee dissolving and leaving a strong, bitter taste. For the best cup of coffee, it is recommended to brew between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Price: Although not everyone can afford to spend hundreds on a coffee maker, it is important to bear in mind that quality shouldn’t be forgotten. Spending that extra little bit more can mean you are getting a fully functioning, long-life coffee maker that you don’t have to worry about fixing or replacing in the not-so-distant future. It is ideal to find a coffee maker within your price range that won’t give you trouble – hopefully, you can find one here!
- Maintenance: How easy is it to clean? How often do you have to clean it? How often will you have to get it repaired, or can you troubleshoot any issues that arise yourself? Nobody wants to invest in something only to find out that they have to spend more time and money on it than expected.
Different Types of Coffee Maker
It is important to note before we dig into this list that there are many kinds of coffee makers and many different methods of making coffee. Some of these methods may be more suited to your lifestyle than others, or perhaps you may simply have a preference for a particular process. Here’s a little bit of know-how to prepare you for what to look out for in the list below:
- Espresso Coffee: Espresso machines have been around since 1901, and are a means to brew coffee under pressure. The fact that it is brewed in this way leads to faster brewing time and a stronger brew in contrast with other coffee brewing methods. As an at-home brewing method, an espresso machine can be quite large and, depending on the make, awkward to fit into your kitchen. Still, if you like your coffee milky (in the form of a latte, cappuccino or flat white) or if you like your coffee short, dark and robust in the form of a shot, then the espresso machine is the right choice for you.
- French Press: French Press is a coffee brewing method based off of steeping coffee grinds in hot water, and then separating out the grinds and leaving you with a nice, hot cup of coffee. This is the most popular method of coffee brewing when it comes to home brewing, and it is easy to see why: a french press is cheap and can be got almost anywhere, it is easy to clean, needs no maintenance and has quite a long life expectancy (as long as you don’t go dropping it).
- Drip Coffee: Drip Coffee makers are very quickly becoming the new household favorite coffee makers, and new models are being produced all the time. It’s a relatively simple method of brewing where you pour water over the coffee and let it pass through a filter, resulting in the coffee dripping into the pot. There is a variety of drip coffee-making methods, such as cold drip brewing, the clever dripper, the Chemex brewer, and the percolator.
- Coffee Bags: Coffee bags are the solution to instant coffee – they’re just like teabags, only filled with ground coffee instead of tea leaves. Pop one into some boiling water, and you have a cup of what could *almost* be called coffee. Sure, it’s quick and easy, but using coffee bags means that the coffee grinds aren’t fresh, you can’t really get the temperature/timing right. It’s kind of guaranteed to taste terrible in comparison to other brewing methods. So, instead of wasting your time drinking terrible coffee, have a read through this list and pick out an excellent coffee maker that suits you!
1. Bodum Chambord
The Bodum Chambord is a sturdy, reliable, and good quality French Press for lovers of the low-effort, simple means of making French Press coffee. The Bodum Chambord brews grit-free coffee and makes rich, balanced coffee. It comes with all the benefits of the French Press; Speed, efficiency, and great value for money in comparison to plug-in coffee makers.
2. Essenza Mini
The Essenza Mini is the best Nespresso machine available when it comes to value for money; it is the cheapest one in its range, which is capable of making the same quality coffee as more expensive models. It has an eco mode, turning to lower energy consumption after three minutes of use, and takes only twenty-five seconds to heat up. It is easy to use, speedy and consistent, and although it’s not the cheapest coffee maker out there, it sure isn’t the most expensive, either.
3. DeLonghi BC0430
For lovers of real espresso coffee, the DeLonghi BC0430 is definitely your best call for a good quality home espresso machine. Not only does it make great espresso, but it is also a two-in-one espresso *and* coffee maker. To sweeten the deal, it has a steam wand attached, so that you can have whatever kind of coffee you like in the morning – even if it’s a Cappucino or Late – because this coffee maker can do it all! The machine is small enough to fit under most countertops, and its attractive design makes it easily fit into your kitchen. Although it is on the pricy side, it will save you time and money in the long run compared to a coffee maker or espresso machine.
4. Keurig E-Lite
A user-friendly model that brews a variety of five cup sizes, this model is perfect for the no-nonsense coffee drinker. Installed with options for brewing over ice, a strong brew option, and the option to brew a variety of other beverages, it definitely provides value for money. It is also a beautiful addition to your kitchen and comes in brushed silver, slate, or gold.
5. Cuisinart DCC-3200
Possibly the best value for money programmable coffee maker on the market today, the Cuisinart DCC-3200 is a very affordable option to coffee lovers who value their time and their coffee. With 24-hour programmability, you can have your cup of coffee ready as soon as you wake up, or pause mid-brew if required. You can also adjust brew strength in order to have that extra kick or to tone down the caffeine content a notch or two. Its state of the art technology ensures piping hot coffee without the need to sacrifice flavor or quality and has an adjustable “keep warm” temperature control.
6. Moccamaster 59616 KBG
Famous for its copper heating system and one of the best coffee makers since its invention in 1969, the Moccamaster is a quick and efficient coffee maker. This particular model has a glass carafe instead of the usual steel one, making it easier to clean and maintain. It also comes with a manually adjustable brew basket, and is almost fully disassemblable, meaning you can do most of the cleaning and troubleshooting (if any occurs) yourself. A coffee machine for those who really, *really* love their coffee – enough to spend the hefty amount of money that it costs to buy.
7. Ratio Eight
The Ratio Eight is the best coffee maker for you if you’re looking for a more expensive, high-end programmable coffee maker. Using Chemex filters, this coffee maker is very similar to a Chemex, although easier to use. It is perhaps the most aesthetically pleasing of all of the coffee makers mentioned here (although the most expensive, too). The glass carafe means you can tell how much coffee is left in the pot and clean it better, while its automated Chemex brew produces a good cup of coffee. Although the price is high, the Ratio Eight may be the first and last coffee maker you ever buy.
8. Bunn 10-Cup Velocity Brewer
An affordable coffee maker that doesn’t take up lots of space, this Bunn model is user-friendly and quick, producing ten cups of coffee in just over three minutes. It has a stainless steel water tank with an internal thermostat, keeping water at the perfect temperature. Adding brew water is easy, and the spray head improves coffee-flavor extraction. This machine also comes with a three-year warranty – meaning you’ll have a fully functional coffee maker at hand for at least three years for your investment.This is the perfect coffee maker for you if you’re looking for something compact, affordable, and simple.
9. Mr. Coffee Optimal Brew
The most affordable on this list, Mr. Coffee Optimal Brew is a very economical coffee maker. The stainless steel carafe ensures your coffee stays hotter longer, and the water reservoir is removable, making refilling it much easier than with some coffee makers. It can also be programmed to brew at set times each day. Its water filtration removes 97% of the chlorine present in the water, improving the taste of your coffee, and its fresh brew timer tracks coffee freshness from the time it’s brewed. This coffee machine contains the most features and benefits to be had at a price this low.
10. Ninja Hot & Cold Brew System
The Ninja Hot & Cold Brew System is perfect for you if variety is the spice of *your* life. It can make just about any drink that you can think of, has a built-in milk steamer, and has six different brew sizes *and* five different brew styles. You can use this machine for a hot brew of coffee or tea with or without milk, or have the option to brew over ice. This coffee maker provides a lot of variety in terms of beverages, especially for the cost. Although its affordability is debatable, this coffee maker’s features provide indisputable value for money.
11. Breville Bambino Plus
The Breville Bambino Plus is the perfect coffee machine for those who are new to making espresso coffee at home. The whole set-up comes complete with a grinder, steamer, and accessories, and although somewhat pricey, it does definitely give you a bang for your buck. This little machine delivers barista-quality coffee in a compact small package, making this coffee maker easy to slot into your kitchen, as well as your daily routine. With only a three-second heat up time from a cold start, this coffee maker is perfect for rushed morning coffees and busy coffee lovers.
12. Bonavita Connoisseur
A small and compact design and beautiful addition to your kitchen, the Bonavita Connoisseur produces one of the best cups of coffee you’ll ever have. It makes great tasting coffee through pre-infusion, which is a process of wetting coffee grinds a few minutes before use, and this allows the coffee to extract evenly. As well as producing great tasting coffee, the thermal carafe keeps the coffee nice and hot. This coffee maker produces an eight-cup carafe in six minutes, making it perfect for a family home, an office, or just someone who really, *really* likes coffee. The machine also lets you know when your coffee is ready – how much more efficient could you get?
13. OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker
For those who love a cold brew, the OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee maker is for you. A well designed, easy to use coffee maker, this is the perfect choice if you are looking for a good quality cold brewer, rather than a well rounded multi-functional coffee machine. This clever little coffee maker automatically stops filtering when the carafe is removed in order to avoid a mess and has an easy access switch, which activates the filtration process, keeping your hands clean. To sweeten the deal, if you are in any way unhappy with your coffee maker, OXO guarantee to repair or replace it. This coffee maker produces a cold brew with balanced acidity and a cleaner taste and is very much affordable, if not cheap, option.
14. Mr. Coffee 12-Cup Coffee Maker
The Best rated coffee maker on Amazon, the Mr. Coffee 12-Cup Coffee Maker offers two simple options of either a full carafe of coffee (you guessed it – twelve cups!) or a single serving and is a cheaper alternative to other methods of brewing coffee such as the use of pods. It is quick and easy to use and clean and is highly cost-effective. Although more expensive than it’s sister model, which also made this list, this model seems to have a more well-rounded reputation overall in terms of cost, speed, and brew. This coffee maker is ideally suited to large households of coffee drinkers, offices, or simply any coffee-loving individual.
15. Breville Precision Brewer
The Breville Precision Brewer makes excellent coffee, both hot and cold, and is a semi-affordable long-life coffee maker. The brew times are quick, and the machine can brew with flat-bottom filters, cone filters, and has a pour-over attachment. It is the only coffee maker that has a customizable flow rate and bloom time, making it a perfect fit for those who love to experiment with their morning beverages. Although quite large, it is well made and robust, and an excellent long-term investment if you love your coffee.
Hopefully, this list has been a helpful tool in informing you about methods of coffee making and about the best coffee making products currently on the market. Although a lot can be said for the durability, practicality, and value for money of the products included in this list, coffee taste is a very subjective thing, and it can often be difficult to find common ground on good quality coffee products when it comes to taste. This blog has tried to present all of the above in light of a variety of aspects, so as to give a fully-rounded idea of what can be expected from the above products.