Archive Monthly Archives: March 2018

Best Espresso Machine for Home | Reviews and Ratings

Are you trying to find the best espresso machine for your home?

Do you want to know what the best home espresso machines are so you can brew delicious drinks every day?

Then this free guide is perfect for you.

Below, you’ll find this guide divided into three parts:

  1. Why Home Espresso Machines are a Great Investment
  2. Features You Should Look for in a Device
  3. Reviews of the Best Espresso Machine for Home

Why Home Espresso Machines are Great Investment

As you already know, there’s no other experience that comes close to that of enjoying a freshly brewed cup of espresso.

That frothy crema, rich taste and caramel body are an exquisite treat.

Whether you want to savor the deliciousness of espresso every morning, after work or both, it’s all up to you with a home espresso machine. And, with the right type of device you can also brew other yummy drinks such as cappuccinos, lattes, ristrettos and more.

Clearly, one of the biggest advantages of having an espresso machine in your home is that you don’t have to wait in line at coffee shops just to get your favorite drink. However, they’re also a great way for you to save a ton of money.

In fact, if you bought one espresso per day, five days per week, at $5 a drink, that’s a weekly total of $25.

Multiply $25 by 4 weeks in a month = $100.​
$100 multiplied by 12 months = $1,200 per year spent on espresso.

One of the best espresso machines you can buy costs half of that! So, just think about how much money you’ll be saving by investing in an home device.

Features You Should Look for in a Device

When you’re looking to buy an espresso machine, it’s important that you take into consideration a few key features before jumping right into reading our home espresso machine reviews. This way you’ll know better which one you should get.

You see, espresso makers come in so many different styles and include a variety of features that affect the total cost of the machine. You can spend as little as $89 for the cheapest product or all the way up to $4,000 for a commercial grade system.

Fortunately, we’re going to share with you the different features you should look for in a device so it makes the process of finding the right machine a whole lot easier.

As you read the sections below, ask yourself if that feature matters to you or not. For each aspect you can live without, you’ll be able to save a considerable amount of money. However, if you find yourself wanting most, if not all of the features listed below, then you’ll be a lot happier getting a top-0f-the-line espresso machine for your home.

What Type of Drive Mechanism Does it Use?

When looking for the best espresso machine for home, the mechanism that your device uses to brew drinks is the number one most important feature you need to consider. In fact, if you choose the wrong type, you’ll rob yourself of a true espresso experience.

You always want to choose a device that’s labeled “pump-driven.”

A pump-driven machine uses a motor to build up the right amount of pressure necessary to force water through the coffee grinds and deliver an espresso that has a rich, frothy crema on top.

The type of device you want to stay away from is labeled as a “steam-driven” espresso machine. This mechanism does not produce enough pressure to create a true espresso experience, but rather just a strong cup of coffee.

Does it Have its Own Coffee Bean Grinder?

When it comes to making espressos, the optimal flavor is achieved by grinding your coffee beans right before brewing a cup. In fact, coffee beans lose 40% of their flavor within minutes after being ground. That’s why it’s so important to start the brewing process just after grinding.

However, not every home barista enjoys grinding their own beans because it can be a messy and time-consuming process.

For this type of person, a super-automatic espresso machine would be the best choice to get. This type of device delivers a complete bean to cup experience. Not only does it grind the beans for you, but handles every aspect of brewing a delicious cup of espresso with just the touch of a button.

A step down from a super-automatic machine is a semi-automatic device. This is the style that many home brewers own because it’s a lot cheaper. In fact, an on-board coffee bean grinder can increase the price for an espresso machine by twice the cost. If you don’t mind grinding your own beans, you can get an espresso maker that’s very affordable.

Is a Steaming Wand Included?

Are you the type of person that not only enjoys espresso, but loves to indulge in other drinks like cappuccinos, lattes, ristrettos and more?

If so, then getting a home device that includes a milk steaming/frothing wand is essential. Without this feature you can’t brew any other type of drink besides espresso. We suggest that you always buy a machine that has this attachment, because it keeps your drink options open not only for yourself but for guests that you may have come over.

Can it Use Pods or Capsules?

Easy-serving-espresso pods, known as ESE pods or capsules, are pre-measured packets of ground coffee that you can pop into some espresso machines. Some devices operate by only using a ESE pods, while others can accept both ground coffee and capsules.

If you’re someone who’s on-the-go a lot or doesn’t want to deal with grinding your own coffee beans, a machine that accepts pods would be the best choice. However, if you want to be more involved in the espresso making process (or just want to maximize the flavor of each cup with freshly ground beans) this added feature shouldn’t be of much concern.

Does it Have Self-Cleaning Capabilities?

One of the biggest frustrations of owning a home espresso machine is the fact that you have to keep it maintained.

Regular cleaning is essential in order to remove water mineral and calcium build up that occurs in all types of devices. In fact, 90% of machines that end up breaking beyond repair are ones in which the owner did not keep a regular cleaning schedule.
Fortunately, cleaning an espresso machine is that hard of a process. Yes, it does take time (up to an hour) but “descaling” a machine is just a matter of mixing a solution and pressing a few buttons.

However, not every home brewer wants to deal with the hassle of remembering to clean their device. So, some models have a self-cleaning mode built into the machine and automatically takes care of this for you. But, it does come at a higher price.

Now that you know what features to look for in the best espresso machine for your home, we can now move on to the fun part – the home espresso machine reviews!

Reviews of the Best Espresso Machine for Home

KRUPS EA8250 Espresseria

Customer Rating: 4 stars
Current Price: $650

By far, this is one of the best home espresso machines you can get.

As a super-automatic machine, not only does it deliver a rich tasting espresso experience, but does everything for you at the touch of a button.

It has an top-mounted coffee bean storage container,  integrated burr grinder and hydraulic automated tamping system that automatically makes espresso from bean to cup.

It’s most attractive feature is its self-cleaning mode. This exclusive system has been developed so you don’t have to do any manual operations in regards to the cleaning of the product. You won’t find this feature in any other home machine.

Other reasons the KRUPS EA8250 is an great investment for your kitchen include:

  • 15-bar pump pressure for frothy crema
  • Patented thermoblock system that guarantees faster preheats, perfect tamping and water temperature
  • Metallic conical grinder that ensures ground coffee are always consistent in size
  • Capable of producing not only espressos, but cappuccinos, lattes, coffee, tea, hot chocolate and more
  • Patented self-cleaning system, that requires no manual operation
  • Steam nozzle for frothing milk
  • LCD screen for drink preference selection
  • 60-ounce water tank

Gaggia 14101 Classic Espresso Machine

Customer Rating: 4 stars
Current Price: $369

Year after year this continues to be one of the best selling espresso machines on the market.

With advanced technology and a beautiful design, this home espresso machine is like a mini commercial system – without the huge costs. It can brew single or double shots as well as two cups at a time.

This product also allows the use of ESE pods in addition to ground coffee.

In addition to a milk frothing wand it also has a separate hot water dispenser, which allows you to use this machine to make non-coffee drinks.

The only drawbacks it has is that it doesn’t include its own bean grinder and requires manual cleaning, but for this value it can’t be beat.

Here are some other reasons why the Gaggia 14101 is a great buy:

  • 17-1/2-bar pump with high-voltage boiler
  • Stainless-steel housing for long lasting durability
  • Brass portafilters and grouphead for temperature stability
  • 3-way solenoid valve that instantly releases the pressure from the group head, giving you instant access to the portafilter for immediate re-shot filling
  • Allows the use of ESE pods
  • Frothing wand and hot water dispenser
  • 72-ounce removable water reservoir
  • Accessories include: single- and double-shot stainless-steel filter basket, tamper and measuring scoop

De’Longhi EC702 15 BAR Pump Espresso Maker, Stainless Steel

Customer Rating: 4 stars
Current Price: $190

This is a gorgeous espresso machine that will look great in any kitchen.

With all stainless steel you’ll enjoy long lasting durability, in addition to mouthwatering cups of espresso.

It includes all of the valuable features we listed above in this guide except for a self-cleaning function. However, the numerous advanced features more than make up for that small drawback.

Here’s why you’ll want this De’Longhi EC702:

  • Dual function filter allowing you to make a single or double shot espresso
  • 15-bar pump pressure
  • Option to hold ESE pods
  • Steaming wand that mixes steam and milk to create creamy lattes and cappuccinos
  • Two separate thermostats that allow you to control both water pressure and temperature
  • Built-in coffee tamper
  • All stainless steel construction for durability
  • Self-priming operation for a quick start-up
  • Removable 44-ounce water tank
  • Anti-drip design to prevent messy splatters
  • Cup warming tray to keep your cups hot during and after brewing

We hope that these home espresso machine reviews have helped you to narrow down which product you want to buy. A lot of research went into choosing which devices to put on this list. No matter which one of these devices you choose they each really are the best espresso machine for home you can get.

Best Cheap / Inexpensive Espresso Machine

Are you looking for the best inexpensive espresso machine you can get that doesn’t compensate on flavor?
Do you want to find the best cheap espresso machine that still packs in a lot of features and value for the price?

Then this guide is perfect for you.

What Type of Espresso Machine Can You Expect to Get?

If you love the taste of espresso and want to bring that experience into your own home without spending a lot of money, you’re in luck.

In this free guide, we’ll share with you some of the best, cheapest espresso machines you can get that deliver outstanding flavor for an inexpensive cost.

However, it’s important for you to understand a key aspect about lower priced espresso machines before you actually invest in one. And that is… most cheap devices use a steam-driven mechanism to brew the drink. This is vastly different then a pump-driven machine.

You see, a steam-driven espresso machine works by building up steam in a chamber and using that energy to push water through a compact “puck” of coffee grounds. Unfortunately, this type of device doesn’t produce enough pressure to create a real espresso drink that has a “crema,” or froth on top.

Instead, this type of machine is only capable of producing really strong coffee.

However, if you’re looking for an inexpensive espresso machine, a cheaper steam-driven device can provide you with an additional feature that a pump-driven product at this price level cannot: a steam nozzle for frothing milk. If you want to make more than just coffee, such as cappuccinos or lattes, this is a great feature to have.

On the other hand, pump-driven espresso machines operate by using a motor to create the optimal pressure to force water through the coffee grounds. This pressure produces a frothy crema.

If you want a true espresso experience, this is the type of device that you want to get. In fact, your local coffee shop uses this type of machine to brew its delicious drinks.

Fortunately, we’re going to share with you the best cheap pump-driven machine below that will allow you to bring your favorite coffee shop espresso experience into your own home.

We’ll also show you the best inexpensive steam-driven espresso machines that you can get. While, they don’t produce a true espresso, the features they do include more than make up for this fault.

Note: the products we’re about to review for you below fall within the the lowest price range for a device, $39-$89. If you’re able to increase your budget to $100-$200, we have another free guide that showcases the Best Espresso Machines Under $200 that are pump-driven AND include a milk frothing wand to make cappuccinos, lattes, lungos and more.

Now, let’s move onto the reviews so you can find the best product that’s right for you!

Reviews of the Best Inexpensive Espresso Machine

 #1 Best Cheap Espresso Machine

De’Longhi EC155 15 BAR Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Maker

Customer Rating: 4 stars
Current Price: $89 New, $59 Used

This is the cheapest espresso maker you’ll find that uses a pump-driven mechanism to brew drinks.

As we mentioned above, pump-driven machines are the top products to own, because they are able to produce the amount of pressure necessary to create a true espresso experience.

With a 15-bar pump pressure, this product really delivers on taste and crema.

What also makes this espresso machine stand out is the fact that it includes a swivel milk frother, which allows you to create cappuccinos, lattes and other drinks with a rich, creamy froth.

You also have the option of using fresh ground coffee or easy-serving-espresso (ESE) pods. ESE pods are pre-measured coffee packets that require no messy clean up. Just pop it in, hit the button and enjoy a fresh espresso within seconds. Ground coffee will require you to tamp (a.k.a. pack) it into the portafilter before brewing.

With a compact size and several advances features, this is the best inexpensive machine you can get.

Other highlights of the De’Longhi EC155 include:

  • 15-bar pump, which delivers great crema
  • Dual function filter holder which gives you the option of using ESE pods or ground coffee
  • Swivel jet frother which lets you create cappuccinos, lattes and more
  • Self-priming operation (this reduces start-up wait time so you can enjoy drinks quickly)
  • Removable 35-ounce water tank and drip tray for easy cleaning
  • High-quality stainless steel boiler
  • Convenient cup warmer to keep your cups hot after brewing

#2 Best Inexpensive Espresso Maker

KRUPS XP1000 Steam Espresso Machine with Frothing Nozzle

Customer Rating: 3.5 stars
Current Price: $59 New, $49 Used

This is the second best espresso maker you can get, below our #1 recommendation.

For a $30 cheaper price tag (only $10 if you buy used) you’re giving up a pump-driven device for a steam-driven machine.

As we noted earlier in the guide, a steam-driven device does not produce true espresso, but rather just very strong coffee. If you’re o.k. with this, or don’t want to spend the extra money for the De’Longhi EC155, this product is your best option.

Another thing to keep in mind is that this inexpensive espresso machine doesn’t accept ESE pods. You must use fresh ground coffee in it.

Besides those two factors, the KRUPS XP1000 is a wonderful home coffee machine. It creates a great tasting cup of joe, and delivers a much better experience than your standard drip coffee maker. It also includes a milk frothing nozzle so you can brew cappuccinos and lattes.

For under $60, this product can’t be beat.

Other reasons you’ll like this device include:

  • Dish-washer safe carafe with a 4-cup capacity
  • Steam nozzle for frothing milk
  • 14-ounce water reservoir
  • Removable drip tray

#3 Best Device

Mr. Coffee ECM160 4-Cup Steam Espresso Machine

Customer Rating: 3.5 stars
Current Price: $39 New, $30 Used

Last but not least, we have the Mr. Coffee ECM160 espresso maker.

This compact machine is the cheapest steam-driven device you can get that still has espresso like taste and packs  more features than a regular coffee maker.

With an on-board milk frothing wand (with removable tip), you can enjoy cappuccinos and lattes, in addition to regular strong coffee.

The carafe allows you to brew 1 to 4 cups at a time and is outfitted with a drip-free spout.

A few other reason why you may want the Mr. Coffee ECM160 include:

  • Carafe with measuring marks, stay-cool handle, and drip-free pouring spout
  • Can brew 1 to 4 cups (20 ounces)
  • Milk frothing wand with removable tip
  • Removable drip tray for easy cleaning
  • Cord storage
  • Includes a measuring scoop

Hopefully, by now you know which is the best inexpensive espresso machine you can get that suits your personal preferences. As we pointed out above, the best cheap espresso machine doesn’t have to sacrifice taste. While these products may be low priced, they still deliver a great tasting cup of espresso (or coffee).

Best Pod Espresso Machine

Are you looking for the best pod espresso machine you can get?

Do you want a hassle free, mess free device that produces delicious espressos at home with just the touch of a button?
Then this guide is right for you.

Below, you’ll find this free guide divided into three parts:

  1. Why a Pod Machine is a Great Investment
  2. Reviews of the Best Pod Espresso Machine

Why a Pod Machine is a Great Investment

Pod/Capsule espresso machines are rapidly becoming more popular with coffee lovers who want to enjoy a great tasting espresso, cappuccino or latte at home, without a lot of hassle.

That’s because these types of devices offer what other espresso maker’s do not – convenience.

You see, pod machines operate by using pre-ground, pre-measured packets of coffee, commonly referred to as “pods” or “capsules.” In order to brew a cup, all you have to do is insert a pod into the machine, touch a button and within seconds you’ll be enjoying a delicious drink.

What’s great about these pod espresso makers is that you get to skip the hassle of grinding your own beans and tamping them into a portafilter. This process takes time, can be messy and if the beans are not ground precisely at the same level, it will affect the final taste of the drink.

Also, it takes many home brewers months, if not years to craft a signature stamp on their espressos. Water pressure, temperature and other small nuances vastly affect the final outcome of each drink.

Brewing a great espresso with a semi-automatic machine takes a lot of work and patience!

With a pod machine, you don’t have to worry about any of that. You get a great tasting cup of espresso each and every time you push that button!

But, how do you go about getting the right pod machine? How do you sift through all of the different types in order to find the best one?

Well, that’s why this free guide was created – to help you find the best pod espresso machine that fits your particular needs.

So, let’s now move onto the reviews below so you can find the espresso maker that’s right for you.

Reviews of the Best Pod Espresso Machine

Our #1 Recommendation | De’Longhi America EN750MB Nespresso Lattissima Pro Machine

Customer Rating: 4.5 stars
Current Price: $499

For a pod machine, it doesn’t get any better than this.

This device is jam packed with so many great features it’s hard to know where to start. In fact, most home baristas consider this the Cadillac of espresso machines that use pod/capsule technology.

What’s great about this machine is that while it’s a De’Longhi brand machine, it uses Nespresso brand pods/capsules.

That means you get the high quality precision of a De’Longhi product along with the best flavored coffee packets. In fact, Nespresso offers 22 different coffee blends. When you take this number into consideration and add in the fact that this devices offers an infinite number of water-to-bean ratios, milk proportions and foam thicknesses, you’ll discover that this machine has endless flavor possibilities.

Another great feature of this machine is that is only takes 25 seconds to brew a cup of espresso. That’s amazingly fast!

What also sets this pod espresso machine apart from other competitors is its intuitive touch sensor display, milk froth texture adjustment knob and removable milk container with auto-clean function. This gives you the power of creating so many other types of drinks, such as cappuccinos,  lattes, lungos, etc. at the touch of a button.

Other reasons why this De’Longhi America EN750MB is our top pick are:

  • Brushed aluminum finish
  • Outstanding 19-bar pump pressure for rich, frothy crema
  • Takes only 25 seconds to heat up for espresso, plus an additional 15 seconds for milk
  • Sensor touch display
  • Milk froth texture adjustment knob
  • Detachable milk container so you can store unused milk in the refrigerator for future use; also has an auto-clean function
  • Choose among 6 pre-programmed drinks (ristretto, espresso, lungo, cappuccino, latte, hot milk and hot water function for tea and hot cocoa)
  • Built-in storage for used pods/capsules
  • Chrome plated cup support that adjusts for the height of the cup

#2 Best Choice | Nespresso CitiZ with Milk Frother

Customer Rating: 4.8 stars
Current Price: $299
(Note: If you don’t care about having a milk frother, you can get the standard Nespresso CitiZ for $160.)

This is another top contending pod device. With its sleek, modern design it looks great in any kitchen.

Packing a 19-bar pump pressure system it delivers some of the richest tasting espresso you can get out of a capsule.

It also contains an removable Aeroccino milk frother to create a multitude of different styles of coffee drinks.  When not in use, you can store it in the refrigerator.

The water reservoir is outstanding for a machine this size. Holding 1-liter of water means you’ll hardly ever have to refill this device. An energy saving mode also shuts the machine off after 9 minutes of inactivity.

So, why did we rank it #2? For three reasons:

  1. The housing is cheaper quality that our #1 recommendation, however you can choose between black, red or titanium
  2. The Aeroccino milk frother only heats milk up to about 150 degrees, so mixed drinks are not as piping hot as you may like them to be
  3. It lacks a touch panel display

However, don’t let that stop you from considering the Nespresso CitiZ with Milk Frother. Some positive features include:

  • 19-bar pump pressure for outstanding espresso crema
  • 1-liter (34-ounces) removable water reservoir and drip tray for easy cleaning
  • Fast preheating time; 25 seconds
  • Used pod collector
  • Programmable beverage quantity
  • Aeroccino milk frother allows brewing of all types of drinks and is removable to store in refrigerator
  • Pivoting cup tray accommodates tall recipe glasses
  • Energy saving mode activates after 9 minutes of inactivity

#3 Top Pod Espresso Machine | Nespresso Pixie C60 Espresso Maker

Customer Rating: 4.5 stars
Current Price: $179

You may be wondering, why did another Nespresso product make it to the top 3 list? What’s the difference between this product and the CitiZ?

Well, these two pod espresso machines are actually very similar, but this device doesn’t include a milk frother.

If you see yourself as only enjoying straight espresso capsules with a dab of fresh milk, then this would be the best option for you. However, if you’d like the option to brew cappuccinos, lattes, etc. you’ll want the CitiZ with milk frother.

It’s important to point out that there’s a version of the Pixie C60 that does come with a milk frother, however it’s an external accessory to the machine. And, when you look at the total price, your at around $279. For the money, it’s a better value to get the CitiZ with milk frother.

Other key features that make this espresso machine stand out are:

  • 19-bar pressure pump for maximum extraction of flavor
  • Fully automatic brewing
  • Two buttons allow you to select the shot size (1-ounce pour or 2- to 3-ounce pour)
  • Used pods are ejected into an internal receptacle
  • Drip tray can flip up to accommodate larger cup sizes
  • Heats up in 25 to 30 seconds
  • Programmable to brew for a specific duration based on your taste preference
  • Comes in three stylish colors/styles: Electric Titan, Chrome, Indigo, Aluminum, Black and Red

We hope this guide was beneficial in helping you find the best pod espresso machine for your home. Each product does deliver amazing quality espresso drinks, but hopefully one device will fit your needs better than the others.