The Best Espresso Machines

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Coffee is the magic elixir that wakes us up and gets us going in the morning. For many coffee connoisseurs, the only way to start the day is with a strong espresso or a creamy latte, made at home in a good espresso machine. There are many brands and models of espresso machines, each one offering up different features to produce a premium cup of espresso. With various prices and a range of bells and whistles, the espresso machine you choose will depend on many factors.

Read more about the espresso machines you can purchase online to make an informed decision before choosing one for yourself.

1. Editor's Pick: DeLonghi EC680M Dedica 15-Bar Pump Espresso Machine

1. Editor's Pick: DeLonghi EC680M Dedica 15-Bar Pump Espresso Machine
  • Sleek, compact space-saving design
  • Three-in-one filter for single or double shots and espresso pod
  • Thermo-block technology
  • Attached milk frother wand
  • Removable bottom plate to accommodate larger cups
  • No bean grinder
  • Water tank must be placed correctly or water will leak out

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: 32.99 x 14.99 x 32.99 cm; 4.22 kg
Capacity: 1L
Material: Stainless Steel
Special Features: Milk Frother, Drip Tray
Item Weight: 4.22 kg

For anyone who would like to feel like a real barista when preparing espresso or latte in his or her home, this espresso machine from DeLonghi delivers the real deal with an authentic experience.

Single or double espresso, cappuccino or latte, there is the option of making one or two shots or to even use an easy-serve espresso pod with the three-in-one filter holder. Simply grind the beans, fill the filter, tamp it down, place the holder onto the machine, put a cup on the stand and press the brew button. The thermo block technology allows the machine to heat up quickly and be ready within 35 seconds. The attached Dedica’s Frothing wand mixes steam and milk to create creamy froth and is perfect to experiment and customize milk-based espresso drinks.

Other features include: a sturdy stainless steel construction; a removable bottom plate; a 15-bar professional pressure for quality results, with adjustable controls for personal preferences; and, an automatic flow stop feature that dispenses just the right amount of espresso.

2. Runner Up: Philips 2200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine with LatteGo

2. Runner Up: Philips 2200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine with LatteGo
  • Fully automatic
  • Makes espresso, hot water, cappuccino, coffee, latte macchiato, Americano
  • Touch screen display
  • LatteGo milk frother
  • Compact design
  • More expensive then most espresso machines

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: 49 x 29 x 48 cm
Material: Aluminum
Item Weight: 9.55 kg
Special Features: Fully automatic, 12-grind settings, built-in frother, three temperature settings

For the true coffee connoisseur who looks for the best in everything, this espresso machine from Philips hits all the high notes in terms of features and functions to produce delicious espresso, from freshly ground beans to frothy finish.

Whether it’s an espresso, a coffee or a milk-based latte or cappuccino, this fully automatic machine has it covered for perfect in-cup results with no hassle and in no time. The intuitive touch display allows you to adjust the strength and quantity of each coffee for individual preferences using one of the three different settings on the 'My Coffee Choice' menu.

The built-in bean grinder is equipped with hard, precise 100 per cent ceramic blades. It also has 12 grind settings from which to choose — an ultra-fine powder to a coarse grind. For latte-lovers, the LatteGo feature mixes milk and air at high speed in the round frothing chamber, adds a splash-free, creamy layer of milk froth in the cup at just the right temperature. And since the two-part milk system has no tubes or hidden parts, it can be quickly cleaned under tap water or in the dishwasher.

It can make up to 5,000 cups of coffee without descaling when the aqua clean water filter is regularly replaced; large capacity 9.7-ounce bean container; 12x waste container; and, an AquaClean water filter.

3. Best Moka Pot: GROSCHE Milano Stovetop Espresso Maker

3. Best Moka Pot: GROSCHE Milano Stovetop Espresso Maker
  • Works on most stovetops, campfire and barbecue
  • Durable, made from EN301 food-grade anodized aluminum
  • Available in three, six and nine-cup sizes
  • Safety pressure release valve
  • Affordable
  • Makes limited quantities
  • Does not have an attached milk steamer
  • Needs to be watched while percolating

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: 14.61 x 9.53 x 15.24 cm
Material: Aluminum
Auto Shutoff: No
Special Features: Gas Stovetop Compatible, Electric Stovetop Compatible, Manual, Permanent Filter
Item Weight: 445g

There is nothing fancy about this espresso machine, except its sharp red colour and classic design. Still, what it lacks in shiny bells and whistles it excels in quality and functionality. This espresso maker will work on pretty much any stovetop, including electric, gas, in a campfire, or on a barbecue, and will even work on a quality induction cooktop.

Available in three, six or nine-cup sizes, this classic Italian coffee maker with a modern design is made from quality EN301 food-grade anodized aluminum for durable, long-lasting use. The large rubber coated soft-touch handle has a burn guard to protect your fingers, and sits away from the body to reduce heat transmission.

Simply fill the chamber with water, add coffee into the strainer and screw on the top. Place on a medium heat on the stovetop and soon, as boiling water funnels upwards through the coffee, and into the top section for a deliciously rich espresso. Drink it black or add steamed milk for a latte or cappuccino.

4. Best Budget Pick: Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Steam Espresso System with Milk Frother

4. Best Budget Pick: Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Steam Espresso System with Milk Frother
  • Affordable
  • Glass decanter with measurement markings and easy-pour spout
  • Easy to use
  • Attached milk frothing arm
  • Removable drip catcher
  • No bean grinder
  • No extra features

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: 20.32 x 16.51 x 26.67 cm
Capacity: 4 Cups
Material: Glass
Item Weight: 748g
Special Features: Glass decanter, 20-ounce capacity

Espresso machines can be pricey for many people but that’s why we included this affordable model from Mr. Coffee. The four-cup capacity is great for making rich espresso for friends and family in the morning, or after a good meal.

Fill the reservoir with the correct amount of water, add coffee to the filter, tamp down and attach the portafilter to the machine. The steam heat forces hot steam through the filter for a dark, rich espresso brew of up to 20 oz. at a time, dripping into the glass carafe. For drinkers who prefer a latte or cappuccino, the attached milk-frothing arm is powerful enough to whip up a rich, creamy topping.

Other features include: a glass decanter; a stay-cool handle; a drip-free spout; a removable drip tray; a cord-storage area; recipes; and, a measuring scoop.

5. Best Portable: Wacaco Minipresso GR, Portable Espresso Machine

5. Best Portable: Wacaco Minipresso GR, Portable Espresso Machine
  • Portable
  • Does not need batteries or electricity to work
  • Makes rich espresso in minutes
  • Comes with a built-in cup and scoop
  • Needs hot water to work

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: 7.11 x 6.1 x 17.53 cm
Volume Capacity: 0.07L
Material: Plastic
Item Weight: 454g
Special Features: Portable, works without batteries or electricity

When you’re hiking or camping and there is no coffee shop in sight and you’re still craving an espresso, this portable model will satisfy that craving no matter where you are.

This manually operated espresso machine does not need batteries or electricity to work, just a heat source to boil water. Compact, lightweight and versatile, it can be used with any variety of coffee beans or roast. Just add ground coffee to the filter basket using the integrated scoop. Apply slight pressure to level the grind and add hot water into the water tank. Unlock the piston from the travel lock position and pump a few times to pressurize and extract espresso with a generous crema.

With this handy portable, personal-use espresso maker, you can enjoy a delicious brew no matter where you go.

6. Best High End: Breville BES870XL Barista Espresso Machine

6. Best High End: Breville BES870XL Barista Espresso Machine
  • Makes great quality espresso
  • Includes a bean hopper and grinder
  • Easy to clean
  • Well-made and durable
  • Lots of control over the brewing process
  • There’s a learning curve to make the perfect cup
  • Takes up a lot of counter space

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: ‎ 31.75 x 32 x 33.27 cm
Capacity: 2L
Material: Stainless Steel
Item Weight: 10.4 kg
Special Features: Milk frothing wand, automatically adjusts water temperature, 1/2lb. bean hopper

If you’re looking to invest in a high-quality espresso machine with the most control over the brewing process, and you aren’t worried about a high price tag, this could be the right machine for you.

This espresso machine has a hopper and a grinder, so you can always have freshly ground beans, and it doses the perfect amount of coffee grounds for you to make the perfect espresso. Your first step to making a shot of espresso is to grind your beans, and then use the tamper to create an espresso puck. You’ll then lock the portafilter into the right spot on the machine, and then it’ll pull hot water through to brew your shot of espresso.

There’s a lot more to it with an espresso machine like this, though — it’s going to take some coffee knowledge to get it working properly. You’ll at least need to know how the fineness of the grind and the how long water is pulled through the grinds will affect the flavour of your espresso, and it can take some practice to steam milk properly. Once you learn everything, though, the quality is quite unmatched.

7. Best Nespresso: Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine by De'Longhi with Aeroccino Milk Frother

7. Best Nespresso: Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine by De'Longhi with Aeroccino Milk Frother
  • Many different coffee pods available
  • Makes different types of drinks, not just espresso
  • Doesn’t take up too much counter space
  • Comes with a milk frother for lattes and cappuccinos
  • Vibrant red colour
  • Pods create a lot of waste
  • Less control over the brewing process

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: ‎ 49.4 x 29.21 x 39.8 cm
Material: Plastic
Item Weight: 5.88 kg
Special Features: Uses pods to make espresso, comes with a milk frother

Nespresso machines like this one are an alternative way to make espresso, without all the hassle of grinding and measuring your grounds and managing the brew time. This machine is from their Vertuo line, which can make different sized drinks than just espresso, and its bright red colour will look great in your kitchen.

There are lots of different flavoured pods available to purchase, and each one will give you a consistent brew — they’ll all be full-bodied and have delicious crema. While shopping for pods, you’ll find that there are five different coffee sizes to choose from, which range from tiny shots of espresso to full cups of brewed coffee, so there’s a lot of versatility with a machine like this.

One of the main drawbacks with using this machine is that the pods aren’t good for the environment, and it creates unnecessary waste. Although the pods are 100% recyclable, it’s still your choice to decide if you’re okay with it, and please make sure that you do recycle the pods if you choose this machine.

8. Best All-in-One: De'Longhi All-in-One Pump Espresso and 10 Cup Drip Coffee Machine

8. Best All-in-One: De'Longhi All-in-One Pump Espresso and 10 Cup Drip Coffee Machine
  • Makes both espresso and drip coffee, and it can steam milk
  • Great value for the price
  • Poured espresso has good crema
  • Easy to learn to use
  • Fuss-free cleaning process
  • Doesn’t come with a milk frothing pitcher
  • Some buyers said it needed maintenance often

Key Specs

Product Dimensions: N/A
Capacity: 1.2L
Material: Stainless Steel
Item Weight: 6.44 kg
Special Features: Makes both espresso and drip coffee, easy filling water reservoir, programmable timer

If you’re looking for a machine that’ll make freshly brewed drip coffee as well as espresso, and you’d prefer not to use a machine with pods, this is one of your best options. It even has a programmable digital timer, which you set to make sure a fresh pot of coffee is always ready for you in the mornings.

For being such a versatile machine and coming from a company well known for their high quality, this model is quite affordably priced. It can brew drip coffee and espresso at the same time, so if you’re really needing a caffeine fix, chug a shot of espresso while you’re waiting for your pot to brew.

This machine features a front-loading system, which means both the water and coffee grounds are filled there for your convenience. There’s also a manual milk frother on the side, which as previously discussed can take some practice to use properly, but once you learn, you’ll be foaming anything from dairy milk to oat milk without any trouble.

What to Look for When Choosing an Espresso Machine

There are many different brands that make espresso machines and the one you choose for yourself will be determined largely by how you intend to use it. If you love espresso but don’t like to fuss, you may want to choose an automatic model that will do most of the work for you. If you want to make espresso like a barista, a model that gives you the flexibility to be creative with each cup is the way to go. If you only intend to use the machine occasionally for single servings, choose a smaller capacity model. If you have a large family or love to entertain and you will use your machine often, take this into consideration when choosing the right product for your needs.

Functions and Features

The more functions and features in an espresso machine, the more expensive it will be, but if you intend to use all the features, it’s worth it. Here are some features to consider:

Milk frother: If you like a latte or cappuccino, it’s nice to have a frother wand attached to the espresso machine. Of course, you can always purchase a milk frother separately, but it’s more convenient to have one attached to the machine if you will use it often.

Bean grinder: Some higher end models have integrated bean grinders that are not only convenient, but provide the freshest tasting coffee when the beans are ground immediately before brewing. Many offer up different grinds, from ultra fine to coarse, and have quality ceramic blades. Again, this is an accessory that can be bought separately.

Portafilter: Most portafilters can accommodate one-shot, which is fine if that is the size you like. If you sometimes want two-shots or to use a convenient espresso pod, there are portafilters that come with interchangeable filters to offer up more flexibility.

Price: Some espresso makers are mighty machines, expertly crafted with high-end materials, featuring every feature, bell and whistle to make a perfect cup of espresso. These machines can be very expensive, starting at around $900 and going into the thousands of dollars. And while these models will often last longer, you don’t have to spend that much to get a quality machine. How you want to make espresso, which features are important to you, and the brand of the espresso machine will contribute to the price. With so many models to choose from, you don’t have to break your budget to find one that you can afford.

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