Whether coffee is your first priority in the morning or you prefer a mid-afternoon pick-me-up, you already know that the coffee maker you purchase is a critical decision. And, because to the increased availability of specialty coffee drinks like cold brew and lattes, there are now more options than ever before.
We take our coffee extremely seriously in the Kitchen Appliances Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute. To find the best brews, we’ve tested over 100 coffee makers and brewed over 1,000 cups of coffee in a variety of different types of coffee makers from Galla Coffee Blog, including drip coffee makers, French presses, espresso machines, Nespresso machines, cold brew makers, single-serve coffee makers, portable coffee makers, models with built-in coffee grinders, and more.
We brewed at least two full pots of coffee in each drip machine and recorded the brew time, brew temperature, and how well the coffee kept warm over a two-hour period to find the top overall coffee makers. When we test espresso machines and single-serve coffee makers, we pay close attention to consistency. We do a sensory test as part of our brew tests, and we ask as many individuals as possible to taste and give their notes. We score ease of use in addition to a performance by evaluating the usability of the user guide and how easy it is to use the controls, access the water tank, brew basket, read the marks on the tank and carafe, and clean the carafe, among other things. Here are the greatest coffee makers you can buy in 2021, based on the numerous models we’ve tested:
Brewer who pays attention to detail
The Breville Precision Brew lives true to its name by brewing coffee at the exact temperature and brew time, making it ideal for coffee connoisseurs. Not only is the performance outstanding, but so are the numerous options, including the ability to create a single cup, brew over ice, cold brew, and pour-over coffee.
This coffee maker’s bloom time, brewing temperature, and flow rate can all be customized to make the perfect cup of coffee for you. For those with a delicate palate who wish to bring out different flavors in the coffee or have a preference for one, it also includes both cone and flat bottom filter baskets. Our studies revealed that it has a short brew time when compared to others: it takes roughly eight and a half minutes to brew 12 cups of coffee. It also made a hotter, tastier cup of coffee, scoring one of the highest in our taste tests.
This thermal carafe, unlike some others, kept the coffee hot for the whole two-hour period. We also discovered that filling the water tank without spilling was simple because to the extra-large hole. Breville didn’t compromise on the niceties either, with a looped plug that’s easy to pull out of the wall and a sleek stainless steel design that won’t seem out of place on your counter.
This coffee maker is not only a top performer in terms of brew time and temperature, but it’s also one of the most affordable on the list. It’s programmed, produces up to 12 cups of hot coffee, and maintained it warm for the duration of our tests, which lasted two hours. It’s a simple coffee maker compared to others, but it’s one of the most user-friendly. It has a compact footprint, measuring just over 6 inches wide by 13.5 inches long, if counter space is an issue.
It boasts a digital display and a 24-hour auto brew mode, so you can wake up to freshly brewed coffee. With its sneak-a-cup feature, you can swiftly snag a first cup by temporarily stopping the flow of coffee and pouring some coffee into a cup without leaving a mess.
8 Cup Connoisseur Coffee Maker
If you prefer appliances with a simple, uncomplicated design, you’ll appreciate the Bonavita One-single Touch’s switch. It was one of the easiest coffee makers to use in our tests, with a simple instruction booklet and easy access to the water tank and brew basket. It prepared eight cups of coffee in under seven minutes in our lab tests, so you can grab some and go for mornings when you’re in a hurry. It comes with a stainless steel thermal carafe, but because the coffee didn’t stay warm for the full two hours, it’s better not to leave it out for too long.
Mini Drip Coffee Maker (5 Cups)
If you only need a few cups of coffee at a time but want something more than a single-serve, the Capresso 5-cup Mini is an ideal coffee maker for someone seeking for a tiny machine that can brew a few cups with no bother. It’s not as complicated as other coffee makers, but it does have a lot of features that make it simple to use. It does offer important characteristics, such as being programmed, keeping coffee heated for two hours, and having automatic shut-off, so you never have to worry about it being turned off after you leave the house.
It didn’t brew as hot as some other coffee makers, but most little coffee makers struggle to reach high temperatures. However, as a trade-off, this coffee maker is small and takes up little counter space, and if you’re in a hurry, the complete pot of coffee is ready in under 10 minutes. The carafe can be washed in the dishwasher, and the flip-top cover can be removed for easy cleaning.
12-Cup Coffee Maker with Easy Measurement
Look no farther than this Mr. Coffee model for a simple and easy-to-use coffee maker. It was simple to prepare, operate, and make a nice cup of coffee in our tests. The water tank had a large aperture that makes it simple to fill, and the color-coded measuring scoop ensured that the correct amount of coffee grounds was scooped into the filter based on the water level. The coffee arrived hot, and you’ll never have to worry how long it’s been sitting there thanks to a feature that tells you how long it’s been keeping heated.
Coffee Maker with a Twist
This Ninja gives you a lot of possibilities if you adore espresso-based drinks. It can prepare lattes, cappuccinos, and macchiatos thanks to the concentrated coffee option and attachable milk frother. It can also make single-serve, XL cup, XL multi-serve, half carafe, and full carafe versions of traditional, rich, and iced coffee. In our tests, the water reached the right brewing temperature quickly and had a shorter brew time than competing coffee makers. There’s also no need to be concerned about your coffee getting cold because it can keep it heated for up to two hours.
Despite the fact that this machine employs graphics rather than standard indicators to indicate cup and carafe sizes, we found the control screen to be simple to operate. Small details like a measuring spoon that attaches to the machine so it doesn’t get lost and a removable water tank with side handles to make it easier to carry delighted us as well. While this was simple to use in general, the glass carafe is hand wash only, and while we were able to get our hands into the aperture to clean it, someone with larger hands might have a harder time doing so. It comes with a heated carafe as well.
Coffee Maker for Cold Brew
This best-selling cold brew coffee maker produced delicious coffee with a smooth, balanced flavor. It’s simple to use: simply pour water into the “rainmaker” top, which uniformly distributes water over the grounds, and set aside for 12 to 24 hours. Push the lever to dispense the coffee into the glass carafe when it’s ready. Cleanup was a breeze for testers, and the parts nest together when not in use for more compact storage.
Coffee Maker K-Elite
This Keurig single-serve coffee maker not only won our single-serve coffee maker competition, but it also created the best-tasting single-serve coffee, which was full-bodied and smooth. It doesn’t get much more convenient than pre-heating in less than one and a half minutes, or using the auto-feature to set a timer to turn it on exactly when you want.
The owner’s manual was straightforward to understand, and the control panel was simple to operate. There are five drink sizes to choose from, ranging from four to twelve ounces, as well as standard, strong, and iced brews. We found the photographs of cups to be quite intuitive, even though the serving sizes aren’t numbered. It also includes a large 75-ounce water reservoir, so you won’t have to worry about refilling it all the time. Consider the Keurig K-Supreme Plus Smart Single Serve, which connects to WiFi and features BrewID technology for an even more personalized experience.
Coffee Maker VertuoPlus
We discovered that this coffee and espresso machine produces a flavorful, well-balanced brew. Our taste testers were wowed by the Nespresso coffee, which had a foamy yet smooth crema that made the coffee appear silky smooth; in fact, one tester didn’t even need to add milk, despite the fact that this is how they generally drink their coffee.
It can brew up to 14 ounces of double espresso, lungo, and ordinary coffee. Because the machine scans the barcode on the coffee capsule and brews it specifically for the coffee, the coffee is ready with just one click of the button. The design was praised by testers as being sleek, modern, and simple to operate. It only takes big Nespresso capsules, but there are approximately 30 flavor possibilities, so you’ll never get bored.
Eileen Coffee Maker (French Press)
If you’re searching for a French press to make a stronger cup of coffee, the Bodum Eileen French press is the one to get. It not only has the same features as the popular Bodum Chambord French press that we tested and recommend, but it also has a sleek modern style that would look excellent on any counter.
The metal frame not only looks wonderful, but it also protects the glass carafe from cracking, which is a regular problem with glass French presses. It also created a well-balanced cup of coffee every time, and the stainless steel filter is simple to use and well-fitted, ensuring that the coffee grounds stay at the bottom and out of your cup. The carafe and all of its components can be washed in the dishwasher, making cleanup a pleasure.
Espresso and Coffee Maker
This coffee maker is approximately the size of a travel cup, extremely lightweight, and small, making it convenient to take almost anyplace, such as on road trips or camping, to brew your own coffee on the go. Aeropress claims to make a low acidity espresso-like coffee, so you may enjoy barista-style drinks like lattes and americanos while traveling.
Although this unusual coffee maker appears scary, our testers reported that it only took a few minutes to brew a delicious full-bodied cup of coffee. Simply place a filter in the cap, twist on the chamber, stand the Aeropress on a firm cup, and add coffee grounds. Then pour in the hot water, swirl for 10 seconds, and gently press until all of the water has been removed. It can create one to three cups of smooth and robust coffee in about a minute. Because there are just three parts and they can be washed in the top rack of the dishwasher, cleanup is also quick.
Nicole Papantoniou, Director, Kitchen Appliances & Culinary Innovation Lab, Good Housekeeping Institute Nicole oversees the content and testing related to kitchen and cooking appliances, tools, and gear at the Good Housekeeping Institute’s Kitchen Appliances & Culinary Innovation Lab; she’s an experienced product tester and developer, as well as a recipe creator, with a background in classic culinary arts and culinary nutrition.