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5 Best Coffee Machines for December 2021

The following ranking contains a list of the best coffee machines available on the market for 2021. The products have been grouped into categories, to make the choice easier.

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5 Best Coffee Machines for December 2021

The answer to the question “which coffee machine is the best” might be a highly problematic issue. It’s difficult to figure out the very rich market of such devices. Each of them has a different set of functions. Which one you pick depends mostly on your individual coffee preferences. Before buying anything, make sure to know which functions are crucial for you. Check the best coffee machines from the following categories:

  • The Best Fully Automatic Coffee Machine
  • The Best Espresso Coffee Machine
  • The Best Semi-Automatic Coffee Machine
  • The Best Pod Coffee Machine
  • The Best Drip Coffee Machine
  • The Best Coffee Machine with a Grinder
  • The Best Coffee Machine from Krups
  • The Best Coffee Machine from De’Longhi
  • The Best Coffee Machine from Saeco
  • The Best Coffee Machine from Philips

Every coffee enthusiast dreams to enjoy a perfect flavour of this beverage in each sip. To achieve this, one needs good equipment. Only the best coffee machine can make a beverage that satisfies even the pickiest palates. Owning a good-quality device, you can prepare a delicious cup of coffee - even if you are not an expert. The crucial question is as follows: what is the best coffee maker?

How to pick the best coffee machine?

After deciding that you want to purchase a coffee machine, you have to deal with another issue - which one to pick? When browsing through the selection of home appliances stores, you can easily notice the wide variety of devices of this type. For this reason, picking one might be really difficult. To make things easier, learn the features of each type.

The best coffee maker is the one that meets your individual needs. Before making a purchase, you need to carefully analyse all functions a particular model has. Your own habits and the type of coffee you drink are also very important. Everyone has different preferences - and beverages made by individual devices differ in taste. If you usually drink pour-over coffee, an espresso machine might not be right for you. Which model is the best coffee machine for you depends on its functions - and they should match your own habits. A well-matched device can serve you for a long time with a satisfying taste of coffee.

What are the characteristics of the best coffee machines?

Because every coffee drinker has different preferences, the ultimate best coffee maker simply doesn’t exist. But you can point to several functions that will satisfy every user - regardless of taste preferences.

The power of the device is the basic criterion most customers should pay attention to. It indicates the rate at which water gets heated. The quicker this process is, the sooner the beverage is ready. The best coffee machines have a high level of power.

Most coffee lovers admit that coffee tastes best when freshly ground. For this reason, make sure to check if the device has a grinder. It’s a very useful option which can save you a lot of time. Otherwise, you have to grind coffee beans in a separate device or buy pre-ground coffee, which might taste worse.

The size of the device depends on the dimensions of the kitchen, as well as the number of people who are going to use it. What is the best coffee machine for a small kitchen? Of course, smaller appliances are the better choice, in this case. But if there are more users, a device with a capacious water tank and a big waste container is a perfect option. This way, you can prepare more coffee at once, and don’t have to deal with throwing away the used coffee grounds so frequently.

Espresso or drip coffee machine?

When wondering what coffee machine to pick, you have to decide what type of brewing is best for you. Drip or pressure brewing are the two options. The former is perfect for those who mostly drink traditional pour over coffee. Drip coffee machines have a holder for the filter to keep the grounds in place. The brewed coffee drips down to the kettle - placed directly under the filter. Such models are very simple and usually inexpensive. They don’t make different types of coffee like espresso machines, which might be a drawback for some. Such devices also require more attention from the user.

Espresso machines are another option - in this case, you can choose between fully automatic and semi automatic models. They need less attention and have more functions than drip machines. Both types - fully and semi automatic use hot water that goes through coffee grounds under pressure. Compared to pour-over coffee, the beverage from an espresso machine contains more caffeine and the taste is less acidic. Most such devices have a milk frother.

Are automatic espresso machines the best coffee makers?

Fully automatic espresso machines are definitely the easiest to use. To prepare a beverage, you just have to add some coffee and press the right button. Automatic espresso machines have many different functions, and the most advanced models can be controlled with a smartphone. Such devices are considered the best coffee machines for those who don’t have time for complicated coffee-brewing rituals. Their price is a significant drawback - a good-quality fully automatic coffee machine can cost even over $1,000.

If the number of functions is not a priority, you can pick an automatic drip coffee machine. It’s equally easy to use - you just have to add some coffee grounds, pour some water, insert a filter and press a button. Many models have a built-in grinder, so the quality of coffee is similar - although the beverage is more acidic and stronger.

What are the functions of the best coffee machines?

When trying to resolve the dilemma of which coffee machine to pick, consider which functions are going to be used on a daily basis. The best coffee makers have built-in grinders and milk frothers. A timer might be a useful feature as well - thanks to it, you can set beverage preparation on a particular time. A heating plate that keeps the beverage at the right temperature is another interesting option. It’s a popular feature of drip coffee machines, although it can also be found in espresso machines. It’s useful if the device automatically draws the needed amount of water. If it doesn’t have such an option, you have to pour the exact amount into the container every time you want coffee. The best coffee makers also can regulate the strength of coffee - it’s another useful feature.

Many people surely appreciate the self-cleaning feature some machines have. It usually means rinsing the tubes and container with hot water. Of course, it doesn’t mean that you don’t have to clean your coffee machine at all, but you can do it less frequently thanks to this option.

More advanced devices can be controlled with a smartphone. This way, you can turn on the coffee machine remotely - so that your coffee is ready before you even go to the kitchen. You can also personalize the beverage - coffee is adjusted to your personal preferences.

What grinders do the best coffee makers have?

As mentioned, the best coffee machines have built-in grinders. Everybody knows that freshly ground coffee has the best flavour. The best coffee maker should have a grinder that breaks down coffee beans before brewing. Such a beverage is much more aromatic than the one made of pre-ground coffee.

Manufacturers equip their machines with burr grinders which crush coffee beans to the appropriate size. One can pick between two types: ceramic and still burrs. So, which coffee machine is better - with ceramic or steel grinder? Both types have the same construction and operation principle - the only difference is the material. Steel grinders are more durable, therefore they are more recommended. A ceramic grinder can break if something hard gets inside, e.g. a small stone. But there is also a belief that steel grinders impact the taste of coffee because they heat up when working. In fact, both types operate in the same way. As specialists say, they don’t influence the taste of beverages.

What is the capacity of the best coffee machine?

If you are wondering which coffee machine to pick, consider its capacity. This parameter has to be adjusted to your personal needs. Coffee machines have two containers: for coffee and for water that can remain inside the device. The bigger the containers are, the less frequently you have to refill them - but at the cost of space.

A standard coffee machine can contain from 1.5 to 2 liters of water and approximately 250 grams of coffee. Such amounts are more than enough for domestic use. But what is the best coffee maker for an office? If the device is going to be heavily used, a bigger model is a better option. The best coffee machine for offices holds at least 3 liters of water and even 600 grams of coffee.

What is the best coffee machine for black coffee - and which one to pick for lattes?

The best coffee brings a satisfying taste and aroma. Coffee lovers are divided between supporters of plain black coffee and fans of coffee with milk. What device to pick so that everyone is happy? If the device is going to be used by a person drinking exclusively black coffee, there’s no point in getting a model with a milk frother. The best coffee maker, in this case, is a drip model that gets you an intense and strong beverage.

Most people drink coffee with milk - if not every day, then at least from time to time - cappuccino, latte etc. In which case the best coffee machine has a milk frother. Thanks to it, coffee can gain a lightweight milk foam. It’s a good option even if the users typically drink black coffee. If a guest visits, one can offer them both of the coffee types. It’s a much more elegant option than milk taken straight out of the refrigerator.

What are the top rated coffee machines for small kitchens?

A lot of contemporary apartments are small, so the space is quite limited - especially in the kitchen. It doesn’t mean, though, that you have to give up the idea of buying a coffee machine. The market offers a lot of petite devices that fit even a very small interior.

Pod coffee makers are quite significant in this matter. They belong to the cheapest devices of this type, and small size is their big advantage. Many models look very interesting, and they offer a lot of colors to choose from. This way, you can make the coffee machine a decorative element of your kitchen. Drip coffee machines are typically quite narrow but also quite tall. The filter compartment takes additional space over the kettle. Such a device won’t fit under a low-hanging shelf - so make sure to measure the available space.

If an espresso machine is the only considered option, take a look at compact models. They are typically semi-automatic models. They aren’t equipped with a grinder, which decreases the size of the device. If you want your coffee freshly grounded, you have to get a separate coffee grinder. You will find it at any home appliances store. Semi-automatic coffee machines require more attention than fully automatic devices. Many coffee connoisseurs claim that a beverage from a semi-automatic model offers the best flavour.

What is the best coffee machine for singles and which one is better for a family?

The number of potential users might be a hint to the question which coffee machine is better for you. The more of them, the more preferences and needs. Someone who lives alone and has a defined taste doesn’t need a coffee machine with a lot of functions. The device doesn’t have to be large either. The best coffee maker for a single person can be very small - a semi-automatic machine is a good choice. It offers a wide variety of beverages. Drip coffee machines can be problematic for a single, as they are typically designed to prepare larger amounts of coffee. A pod coffee maker is another good option. Such a device is fully automatic and very elegant.

As for families with a few people, the best coffee machine has several functions. Fully automatic devices are a good option, as they can make a lot of beverages of different types. If there are children in the family, check whether the machine prepares non-caffeine drinks like hot chocolate. Pod coffee makers have a similar range of functions - but the necessity to buy pods for the whole family might not be the most economical option.

How much do the best coffee machines cost?

The best coffee machines can cost $200, as well as $2000. Everything depends on the model you pick. Pod models are the cheapest - the best coffee machine from this category costs around $200-$300. Automatic models with milk frothers and various functions are more expensive - prepare to spend from $500 to $2000. Commercial-use devices are a bit different. Their prices start at $5000 and end at even $30,000.

Dorota Czerwińska Author

Dorota is an economist by profession, but her biggest hobby is photography and interior design. In Treehouse since the beginning of 2019.

Contact: dorota@treehouse.co