The Best Soda Makers

By Marlene Eisner

February 22, 2021

A soda maker can transform plain old tap water into a refreshing fizzy dance on your tongue. And since we’re all supposed to drink more water everyday, actually enjoying the taste is a bonus. Another great benefit is that it will save you money and a couple trips to the recycling bin with a bag full of plastic bottles or tin cans.

What's great about these soda makers is that there's more to it than adding carbonated bubbles to water. Some machines allow you to add fruit or flavoured syrup to the water, while others allow you to carbonate almost any beverage, including fruit juice, wine and beer.

Below, you will find information on our recommended list of soda makers — from how they work to how much fizz they will infuse in your drink. Read on to discover what you need to know to choose a soda maker that works best for your specific needs and tastes.

1. Editor's Pick: SodaStream

ProsCons
  • Slim design; good for countertops
  • One-touch control
  • Customizable fizz levels
  • Expensive

Key Specs

Dimensions: 13.97 x 20.32 x 44.45 cm
Material: Plastic
Item Weight:2.77 kg

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This soda maker works quickly at the touch of a button. It does not need batteries or electricity to operate. For cleaning, you can rinse it out with warm, soapy water for the next use.

This new soda maker from SodaStream has the essence of the larger original SodaStream models, but without the bulk, so it will fit nicely into any kitchen décor and countertop without taking up much space.

The Fizzi sparkling water maker starts you off with a mini-CO2 carbonator that will make up to nine litres of soda water, but it is compatible with 60L carbonator cylinders, so you can make larger quantities. This kit also comes with a one-litre size BPA-free reusable bottle in which you can make your sparkling beverage.

The CO2 cylinder hides behind a cover at the back of the machine and once it’s in place, you fill the bottle to the clearly marked line. Twist and lock the bottle in place and press the carbonation button on top of the machine three times for a light sparkle, and up to seven times for heavy bubbles. That’s it! The refills can be a little expensive but trust us, it's worth it.

2. Best Runner-Up Overall: DrinkMate Sparkling Water and Soda Maker

ProsCons
  • Slim design; good for countertops
  • Up to six drink options
  • Multi-step process
  • Refills can be expensive

Key Specs

Dimensions: 13.97 x 20.32 x 44.45 cm
Material: Plastic
Item Weight:2.77 kg

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This is a multi-step process that will carbonate any drink. Whether it's wine, tea or juice, you can make cocktails, or mocktails, for all of your dinner parties and evening occasions.

You don’t need electricity or batteries to operate this soda maker, but it does need a CO2 cylinder and a fizz infuser to work. It is advised that you clean the fizz infuser immediately after each use. This model includes a 10-litre CO2 cylinder, but the machine takes all standard 60L CO2 cylinders.

3. Best Portable Soda Maker: Nuvantee Soda Siphon

ProsCons
  • Hand-held, doesn’t take up much space
  • CO2 chargers are less expensive than cylinders
  • Can’t control level of bubbles
  • Takes some time for the water to fully carbonate
  • Aluminum container makes it difficult to see how full it is

Key Specs

Dimensions: 33.91 x 10.69 x 10.69 cm
Material: Aluminum
Item Weight:1.07 kg

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If you are looking to infuse your water or flavoured drink with enough bubbles to get a good fizz going, this model from Nuvantee will get the job done easily.

This soda siphon harkens back to a time when they were a familiar addition to home bars and kitchens when carbonated drinks were not readily available in the grocery store. Although its sleek, aluminum design will not necessarily affect the outcome of your drink, it does make an attractive addition to your kitchen or bar.

What you’re also looking for in a soda maker is functionality and durability, and the Nuvantee siphon style soda maker ticks off those boxes. While it does take 10-15 minutes to make the carbonated water, the great thing about this model is that you won't have to purchase extra canisters. This model comes with a durable pressure regulator and a lid that prevents drips.

Aesthetics aside, it is lightweight and portable so you can take it anywhere, instead of only being able to use it on the countertop like other models.

4. Best Powder-Based Soda Maker: Spärkel Beverage System (Seafoam)

ProsCons
  • Slim design
  • Does not use CO2 cylinders
  • You can control the fizz with five levels of bubbles
  • Needs electricity to work
  • Can only Spärkel carbonators and bottles

Key Specs

Dimensions: 25.4 x 14.35 x 38.1 cm
Material: Plastic
Item Weight:4.54 kg

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With this electric soda maker, you don’t need to use a CO2 cylinder. If you are looking for a soda maker that use an alternative method successfully, consider this model from Spärkel.

Perhaps the most innovative thing about this machine is that it uses a powder-formulated from high-quality citric acid and sodium bicarbonate to generate CO2 gas naturally when mixed with water. All you have to do is fill the included bottle with water to the line. Next, you can include any ingredients to flavour the water such as strawberries, cucumber slices and mint, and empty the carbonator powder into the designated slot before pressing the start button.

The CO2 cycles through the machine and into the bottle, building pressure up to 80 PSI. This is why you must use the Spärkel bottles since they are specially engineered to withstand a great amount of pressure. Once the cycle is done, the remainder of the carbonator empties into the residue drawer for easy sink disposal.

You can also customize the amount of bubbles you want in your drink. The five choices range from lightly bubbly to an extra kick for infusions. This soda maker comes with one reusable bottle and 10 carbonators.

5. Best Luxury: Aarke Carbonator III Premium

ProsCons
  • Easy to use
  • Uses CO2 cylinders from most popular brands
  • More expensive than other soda makers

Key Specs

Dimensions: 25.4 x 15.24 x 40.64 cm
Material: Stainless Steel
Item Weight:2.84 kg

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When it comes to good looks and functionality, nothing beats this Aarke soda maker.

The newest generation-3 model features a stunning compact design and top-of-the-line user friendly engineering that is available in a range of classic finishes to truly elevate your bar or kitchen countertop.

The updated design allows for the metal base and plastic bottle to be tightly screwed together. The result is an elegant bottle with increased durability and the easy recycling of all components at the end of its lifetime.

Other improvements include additional damper control on the lever that allows for a more controlled release of pressure from the bottle after the carbonation is complete, as well as a higher filling line on the bottle for more sparkling water with every use. With no plastic parts, this stainless steel model is sturdy and long-lasting. It also includes one BPA-free water bottle. The soda maker uses 60L CO2 cylinders and is compatible with SodaStream, Sodasense and Drinkmate, and other popular brands.

Things to Look Out for When Buying a Soda Maker

Versatility: Many soda makers are designed for only carbonating water or adding flavours, but there are other models that can be used to carbonate any liquid you like, from fruit juices and tea to cocktails and wine. If you only want a soda maker that carbonates water, look for a model that only offers that option. Otherwise, shop around until you find one that is more versatile.

Size of CO2 tanks: If you’re using your soda maker to carbonate water for your whole family, or if you drink a lot of water, the size of the cylinder is important. Soda makers can use small (usually 8-gram) CO2 cartridges, a 10-litre cylinder tank, 60-litre tanks and larger. If you plan to make soda regularly, a larger tank is likely a better bet but if you’re on your own, you won’t need something big.

The fizz factor: One of the factors to help you choose a soda maker is the amount of bubbles, or fizz it produces, and how long it takes to get those bubbles going. If you’re fussy about how much fizz is in your water, you’ll want a soda maker that lets you choose the level of bubbles that go into your bottle. These machines may cost more than those that don’t offer the option. If you just want carbonated water regardless of the bubbles, then it’s less of an issue.

Budget: Soda makers are available in a wide range of prices, but there are other things to consider that will affect your wallet. CO2 is a consumable, which means it will empty and you will have to replace it. How often depends on how much you use your soda maker.

Hand-held makers may cost less at the outset than countertop models, but they make smaller quantities and therefore may use more CO2 cylinders. Before choosing a hand-held model, check the price of the cylinders and how easy it is to get new ones. Although countertop models have large cylinders, they, too, must be replaced, so consider this cost as well.

Ease of use: Soda makers pretty much work the same way, but some are easier to use than others. Some models are hand-held, some work by putting pressure on a pump, while others work with batteries or electricity. An electric soda maker generally has more power and will carbonate the water quickly with the push of a button.

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