Best Coffee Maker: Our Review of the Best Drip Coffee Maker in 2021
Here at Black Ink, our top preference for brewing our morning cup of coffee is either by pour over or a freshly extracted espresso. We also totally love to support our local coffee houses (especially those that carry Black ink)!
However, we fully recognize that these methods are both time consuming and can be expensive. Although we have those preferences for more complex, bolder forms of brewing, we certainly crank up the ole drip machine several times a week for easily accessible cups of coffee.
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Best Coffee Maker
When looking into buying a drip machine for your home, there are a few things to take into account:
- How many cups of coffee are the people in the house drinking from one brew?
- How much are you willing to spend on a new coffee maker?
- Can this coffee maker do anything besides brew a pot of coffee?
- How much space will this coffee maker take up?
Once you know your projected volume, have a rough idea of a budget, decide on features you want/need and understand your size restraints, buying the best coffee maker will be a breeze. Here are our top 7 choices at Black Ink.
As far as the best coffee makers go, the Breville BDC450BSS Precision Brewer may fit the bill for consumers seeking out a more specialized cup of coffee. This model will likely please self declared coffee snobs with its functions that align with the Specialty Coffee Association. Looks wise, the Breville will look great sitting on your countertop in your kitchen with its sleek, coffee house looking design.
One great option that the Breville BDC450BSS Precision Brewer has is that it offers either glass or stainless steel carafe options. This option allows you to customize the look of the coffee maker to your aesthetics of your home. Another option it has is the basket for both flat bottom and cone filters, which grants the consumer the ability to decide which filters they prefer to use.
When it comes to finding the best coffee maker for specialty coffee drinkers, sometimes it can be difficult. Often, pour over or French press options tend to be the way to go for these drinkers. The Gold Cup preset on this Breville coffee maker adjusts the temperature of the water and the brew time to best match the standards created by the Specialty Coffee Association.
Finally, the Gold Cup feature will give specialty coffee drinkers the chance to brew a more balanced cup of coffee rather than an over or under extracted one.
Along with the options to use different filters and have the water temperature adjust automatically, the Breville coffee maker is multifunctional. It can brew multiple brew sizes and also has fast, strong, custom brew and cold brew coffee settings. This is for sure a great option for consumers who like to customize their daily cup of coffee.
While the Breville BDC450BSS Precision Brewer boasts highly customizable coffee, it does come in at a higher price point. The steep price may not be worth it to those who are simply looking for the typical brewed pot or cup of coffee. However, for those looking for a more specialized brew, it might be worth the splurge.
Through consumer reviews, it has been found that it can be difficult to get replacement parts from Breville should something on the coffee pot break. If needed, some consumers have reported that Breville either doesn’t have the part available at the moment or in some instances they are unable to replace the part needed for the drip coffee maker.View On Amazon →
First up, we have the Technivorm Moccamaster 10-Cup Coffee Maker. This coffee maker comes in at the top of our list, but also with the top price tag. Although it’s a bit on the expensive side, it’s sure to produce a quality pot of coffee. This machine is simple to use and can brew up to 10 cups of coffee per brew cycle.Pros
One pro of this coffee maker is that it comes in multiple colors and when we say colors, we mean shades like pink, blue, red, etc. That means that you have the option to purchase a coffee maker that esthetically matches the rest of the decor in your brewing space.
The Moccamaster comes with a five year warranty, meaning if you do happen to have issues with the coffee makers within the first five years of operation, it’s covered! Many coffee makers work by forcing hot water through the grounds. This coffee maker is pump free and heats the water to the correct temperature for extracting a quality cup of coffee.
If you’re like us and you like to enjoy multiple cups of coffee in the morning (or any time of the day really) you may appreciate the hot plate that will keep the pot warm. The hot plate has an automatic shut off time of 100 minutes. If you want to know more, check out our Technivorm Moccamaster Review.Cons
This drip coffee maker comes in at a higher price point than the other coffee makers on this list. The price tag may come as a con to some looking to make better quality coffee at home, however it still ends up being much cheaper than grabbing a daily cup of coffee at the coffee shop on your way to work.
One unfortunate thing about this coffee maker is there are no programming options available. That means you need to get up with enough time in the morning to make your pot of coffee, which may be a turn off for those who prefer to prepare their coffee maker the night before and set a timer.View On Amazon →
Whether you’re in a coffee group on social media, a mom group on social media, or just are on social media in general, chances are you’ve heard people talk about the Ninja coffee makers. For more information, be sure to check out our review of the Ninja Coffee Bar.
While they now have a few models, we’re here to chat about the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker, which boasts sleekness and multi functionality. This coffee maker comes with the option to purchase with either a glass carafe or stainless steel thermal carafe
One of the main features of the Ninja makers that makes it attractive to home coffee brewers is that it has multiple brewing functions. The Ninja can brew six different sizes ranging from a single cup to a full pot of coffee.
Along with multiple sizes, there are multiple brewing functions: classic brew, rich brew, over ice and specialty 4oz. brew. The multiple functions really allows the consumer to make a custom cup of coffee at home.
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker also has a fold away milk frother. The milk frother allows for creating drinks with silky smooth warm or cold milk, which is why it is considered the best rated coffee maker to many.
Some consumer complaints about this coffee maker include a portion of the water reservoir that cannot be removed for cleaning. Since the part cannot be removed, some have experienced build up from hard water.
Another complaint some consumers have is that although you can stop the pot from brewing to pour a cup mid brew, you have to do so manually. So, if you reach for the pot to pour your cup and you don’t engage the drip stop function, your coffee will continue to brew even without the pot underneath.View On Amazon →
If you’re looking for a budget friendly, multifunctional coffee maker, the Hamilton Beach 2-Way Brewer may be for you. It comes in at the lower end of the budget for the coffee makers discussed in this article.
Multiple brew sizes allows for this coffee maker to fit the needs of many consumers. Whether you’re looking to brew a single afternoon cup, pack your travel mug for your commute to work, or brew a full pot for entertaining your family during brunch, the 2-Way Brewer Coffee Maker has you covered.
In addition to the multiple size functions of the Hamilton Beach 2-Way, it has multiple functions for brew strength. The pot can be programmed to brew both regular brew strength and a bold brew strength.
As far as multifunction coffee makers go, this one is very affordable. For that reason, many coffee drinkers consider this to be the best home coffee maker around.
The 2-Way is programmable and has an auto shut-off function. That means you can program the coffee pot to brew at certain times. You’ll be able to wake up to the smell of warm, freshly brewed coffee each and everyday if you wish!Cons
Some consumers have complained of feeling like this particular coffee maker needs to be cleaned more often than others. Some related reviews to the cleaning process claim that over time the coffee begins to brew very slowly, often resulting in burnt or over extracted coffee.
There are multiple reviews with complaints of the carafe cracking over time. It’s possible this is due to poor construction or it may be that the hot plate is simply too hot.
The longevity of the Hamilton Beach 2-Way seems to be questionable. Many consumers claim that it’s a machine that lasts well worth the allotted time that should be given to one of this price. Others claim the coffee machine stopped working in as little as four months after purchasing it. That being said, it seems when the manufacturer is contacted directly, they treat their customers well in replacing the machine when it stops working shortly after purchase.View On Amazon →
We get it, sometimes you want to enjoy your local coffee roaster's coffee grounds at home and you fill up the brew basket and brew it in the coffee pot. Other times maybe you're pinched for time or you want to enjoy one of those flavored k-cups.
If you're someone who enjoys coffee machines that are both a drip coffee maker and a single serve coffee maker in the form of Keurig pods, the Keurig K-Duo Coffee Maker may be the coffee pot for you. In fact, it is one of the top rated coffee makers for both single serve and multi-serve.Pros
In terms of brew sizes, the Keurig K-Dup Coffee Maker offers a lot to consumers. Since the coffee machine comes with a 12 cup glass carafe and the ability to brew k-cups, the sizes are virtually endless. When it comes to programming the drip coffee maker, you have the option of brewing a 6, 8, 10 or 12-cup pot into the glass carafe.
In addition to the carafe, having the k-cup option allows for brewing 6, 8, 10 and 12 ounce cups of coffee. The variation in brew size for the k-cup size of the machine allows single serve coffee makers to somewhat control the brew strength of their single cup. In addition to offering multiple brew sizes, the single cup side of the coffee machine has a strong brew option.
In terms of convenience, this coffee brewer has a large 60-ounce water reservoir. That means that unless you're brewing an entire 12 cup pot, you can brew multiple cycles of coffee on the same water tank before needing to refill it. To continue with convenience, the drip coffee maker side of this machine is programmable. To ease your brewing process, you can fill the filter basket with coffee grounds up to 24 hours in advance and set the machine to brew at your desired time.
As far as drip coffee makers go, many consumers make complaints about the coffee pot itself. While the coffee maker may be easy to use and may brew your coffee hot, the complaints about the carafe lie in the fact that it often drips down the side when pouring. You may think a few drips of coffee on the kitchen counter are no big deal and are easy to clean, but it can be frustrating to deal with hot coffee clean up on the daily.
Another complaint to consider is how inconsistent the coffee maker can be. Some consumers report that if you like your coffee hot, you may be out of luck over time. It seems the brewing temperature varies on the drip coffee machines, making it difficult for coffee lovers to enjoy a consistent cup of coffee.View On Amazon →
For all of the Alexa fans out there (we admit we don't even have one in the Black Ink household) the Hamilton Beach Works with Alexa Smart Coffee Maker may be for you! If you have a smart home, this may be the best home coffee machine for your automation.
Sure, you could program your husband or wife to set your coffee machines to brew each morning. Next thing you know, one of you forgets, you don't have your morning caffeine, you're swearing at each other and you have to spend $3-$5 on a crappy hot coffee or iced coffee on your drive to work. Doesn't exactly seem worth it when you could basically program a robot to turn your drip coffee maker on for you, does it?
As far as brewing quality goes for coffee makers, reviewers seem to rate this drip coffee maker as average. Still, it is one of the best drip coffee makers simply because of the automation it can provide.
As we already mentioned, this drip coffee maker is optimized for coffee brewing with an Amazon Alexa. First things first, you may be wondering if you need to download any additional apps to pair your Smart Coffee Makers with your Alexa, the answer is no! You'll be able to pair, program and brew using Alexa.
In addition to programming the drip coffee maker to brew using Alexa, you can also use Alexa to turn off the coffee pot when you are no longer using it. If you do forget to turn off the coffee pot yourself or forget to ask Alexa to turn it off, fear not it is on an automatic 2 hour shut off timer, so no need to worry about the warming plate staying on while you're at work all day.
In terms of ease of use, the Hamilton Beach Works With Alexa Smart Coffee Maker is simple to use and both the filter basket and water reservoir are easy to fill. Many consumers report that because of the ease of filling the machine and the size, they are able to have the coffee pot on their kitchen counter, even underneath kitchen cabinets.
The biggest complaint about the Hamilton Smart Coffee Maker is in its usability with Alexa. Some purchasers of this coffee pot claim that syncing it to Alexa isn't quite so easy. Consumers state the coffee pot appears as a device on their Alexa app, but won't pair.
There doesn't seem to be a simple solution for individuals who are unable to sync the coffee machine to their Alexa, which is a voiced frustration. Despite being the best programmable coffee maker on the list, what's the point if you can't get it to work?View On Amazon →
Coming in at number 7 on our list is the Bunn Velocity Brew. Not only is this machine one of our most affordable drip coffee makers, but it is also the fastest on the list. Easily it's top selling point, the Velocity Brew is capable of brewing 10 piping-hot cups of coffee in a matter of minutes.
Like the majority of the machines on our list, this coffee maker features a drip-free carafe in the event that you are too impatient to wait for your coffee to finish brewing. It also sports a sleek exterior shell that will fit nicely in just about any home.
Thanks to it's rapid heating unit within, and a multi stream spray head, this Bunn coffee maker can quickly and efficiently submerge your grounded coffee with hot water, allowing for that perfect extraction in a fraction of the time compared to it's competitors, making it a top contender for the best coffee brewer around.
This Bunn machine is easy to use, easy to clean and offers extremely fast brewing. While the extraction method isn't quite as advanced as something like a Technivorm, it still tastes pretty amazing. For such a low price point, it is hard to beat.
The main complaint we have with this coffee maker is that it is nothing fancy in regards to it's build design. If this came in an all stainless-steel model, then we would have a clear winner. However, since it is just a plastic coffee machine, the fact that it brews so quickly does not make it a clear winner in our books.View On Amazon →
Drip Coffee Makers
What is the best coffee machine for home use
Of all the drip coffee makers mentioned in this review article, our ticket for best coffee machine for home use goes to the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker. We've chosen this machine as best for home use because it's easy to use, at a middle price point and has many brewing functions. It can brew both single serve, full pot with the carafe and some specialty brews.
While these devices aren't the best automatic coffee maker around, they certainly get the job done for those looking for a versatile experience. In fact, when looking through the drip coffee maker reviews, this one is the highest rated amongst the list.
The attached milk frother is an added bonus for the at home coffee brewer. Overall, most people won't be too disappointed with how the Ninja looks sitting on their counter as it's a relatively sleek looking machine. If you're looking to replace your at home drip coffee pot with a newer model and an overall great machine, look no further than the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker.
Which brand is the best coffee machine
When it comes down to choosing the best brand for coffee machines, this time around we're going to go with the Technivorm. They boast an impressive five year warranty for starters. That means that should something bust on your coffee maker within the first FIVE YEARS of owning it, you'll have assistance in remedying the issue or replacing the part.
Having a five year warranty is great, but do you know what's even better? A coffee maker that lasts that long (or longer) without anything breaking on it. Many consumers report great longevity with their Technivorm, which is a huge plus when you're forking over a good amount of cash for it.
This machine is also incredibly user friendly and simple to use. Although there isn't any fancy programming available, it's virtually fool proof as all you need to do to operate it (aside from loading coffee grounds into the filter basket and pouring water into the water tank) is flip the power switch.
What to look for in a coffee maker
Before looking for a new coffee maker, we think it's most important to look at your life with coffee. The most important factors to consider when buying a new coffee maker are simple. You may want to think about how much coffee you typically drink in a day. Is it important that you can program the coffee pot to brew at a certain time to save you a few minutes in the morning? Are you looking for a coffee maker that has multiple functions?
Another factor we find relatively important at Black Ink when choosing drip coffee makers is the aesthetics. This is an object that you're going to see sitting on your kitchen countertop day in and day out. Do you want to be staring down a bulky, ugly machine first thing in the morning? Maybe it matters to you if it matches all of your other kitchen appliances. Simple looks of the machine are easy to evaluate and consider before purchasing.
Finally, what's going to make you love brewing coffee each and everyday? For some, it may be how easy the coffee brewing process is. For others, it may be in the fact they can brew a single cup of coffee at the push of a button. Maybe it's important to you that it has a built in grinder or it's easy to clean. Overall, you want a machine that you enjoy using and you look forward to operating each morning.
How to make coffee taste good
1. Buy Good Coffee
The very first step to making your coffee taste good is simple, buy good coffee! Yes, good quality coffee often comes in at a little bit of a higher price point, but we fully believe it's worth the extra pennies.
2. Buy Whole Bean Coffee
Second of all, buy whole bean coffee and start grinding your own beans. There are so many options out there for simple, affordable at home coffee grinders. Coffee stays much fresher for much longer when it is stored in its whole bean form. If you're trying to make the best drip coffee possible, you need to be grinding your own beans.
3. Learn To Grind
Once you start grinding your own coffee beans, you will want to make sure the grind size is optimal for drip coffee makers. Coffee beans that are ground too fine may result in over extracted coffee and on the other end, coffee beans that are too coarse may result in an under extracted cup of coffee.
4. Use Proper Water
Next up, you may think you should be using the best water possible to brew your coffee. So, maybe you're pouring filtered water or even spring water into the water tank. Wrong. Coffee actually tastes best when brewed with tap water. The natural minerals in the tap water play a huge role in the best tasting coffee.
5. Coffee Per Cup
Now, it is time to measure out your coffee. But wait, how much coffee per cup should you be using? Well, according to our expert opinion, you should use 1 to 2 tablespoon per 6 ounces of water.
6. Proper Filtration
Finally, it's important to use a paper coffee filter when brewing with drip coffee makers. Not only can this improve the taste of the coffee, but it can make the coffee a bit less acidic. Removing the extra sediment in the coffee through the filter will result in less acid reflux and heartburn commonly associated with even the best drip coffee.
Types of Coffee Machines
In a world filled with instant gratification, there has been a shift from doing what is most convenient, to choosing between different types of convenience. When it comes to coffee, choosing a coffee maker is no different.
Whether you are looking for a commercial sized coffee machine, a home coffee maker capable of making a full pot, or even just a single serving coffee maker, we have you covered!
Check out our list below for the best guides and reviews to ensure a perfect cup of Joe. Although these are our recommendations for the best coffee makers, be sure to do your own research and choose the machine that best suits your needs.
Drip Coffee Machines
A staple in most homes, the drip coffee pot has been around for a long time. Traditionally, a drip machine is known for producing average coffee, but with some recent innovations within the industry, these machines have become well oiled machines capable of producing a superb cup of coffee.
Not only has the coffee gotten better, but it has now become quite automated. Just set it and forget. All you need to do is wake up!
Small Coffee Maker
A pretty vague category, but there are tons of smaller, portable and travel-size coffee makers and machines which is why they deserve their own category. Check out our review as we discuss what the best small coffee maker is for those that need something a bit more portable.
Cheap Coffee Maker
While there are too many coffee machines to pick from on our list, making it quite an overwhelming experience, the best piece of advice is to know your budget. If you find yourself needing something affordable, be sure to check out our review of the best cheap coffee maker available today.
Single Serve Coffee Maker
The single serve coffee maker has taken the world by storm, especially the Keurig Coffee Maker. When we mentioned coffee convenience above, this is the epitome of just that. With just a push of a button, your machine will make a perfect cup of coffee that is extremely easy to clean after. All you need to do is pop in a coffee pod, hit brew, and then throw away the extracted pod. Simple!
Dual Coffee Maker
The dual coffee maker is the perfect balance for the average caffeine loving family or office. Sometimes you need a full pot of coffee, and other times, you just need to brew a single cup to get you through the back half of the day. These dual coffee makers can handle both scenarios, some of which can brew a full pot and a single serving of coffee at the same time.
The coffee percolator is not only an essential for every camping trip, but we feel as though every household should have one of these machines. The percolator can brew an exceptionally strong batch of coffee which is why we put it at the top of the list for coffee makers to buy if you are looking to up your java game.
Coffee Maker With Grinder
Just when we thought we had seen everything, the coffee industry brought us the coffee maker with grinder. Not only do most automatic coffee makers know how strong and when to brew your pot of coffee, but they even grind the beans fresh before doing so. If you know anything about coffee, you'll know the importance of grinding coffee beans fresh which is why these coffee makers with built in grinders are a game changer.
Cold Brew Coffee Maker
There is something special about cold brew, not just the bold flavor notes, but the nostalgia of sipping a nice cold and refreshing glass of cold brew during summertime. Some of you crazy, highly caffeinated, cold brew drinking psychos probably drink it year round. So, that's why we wanted to share our top recommendation for the best cold brew coffee maker, to ensure you get your caffeine fix this summer, or winter.
Iced Coffee Maker
It seems as though many people have jumped ship to the cold brew train, but hold your horses for just one second. Iced coffee is not only incredibly easy to make, but there is actually a difficult science behind it, one that is quite rewarding if done correctly. Have you ever heard of Japanese Iced Coffee? Well, in case you haven't, it is similar in taste to a pour over, but with the bold flavors of a cold brew. Be sure to check out our guides and recommendations for the best iced coffee makers you can buy today.
Pour Over Coffee Maker
If you want to be the best coffee hipster you can be, you really need to start preparing your own pour over coffee. Okay, to be honest, there is nothing quite like a pour over. With a manual extraction like that of the pour over, you get the absolute best coffee experience as you can control the entire process, from the bloom of the ground coffee, to the speed of the extraction. If you want to up your coffee game, you need to buy the best pour over coffee maker.
French Press Coffee Maker
The French Press is an essential for most offices and homes that are looking for something with more kick. Out of all of the coffee makers on our list, there is no doubt that French Press Coffee delivers a rich and highly caffeinated cup of coffee. Since most of these machines rely on a fine, metallic filter, the coffee will retain a lot of sediment, which means it'll be strong enough to make your spoon stand up! Not really, but you get the idea.
Let us start off by saying that we are quite picky about our coffee at Black Ink. The fact that we have partnered with Aeropress, and sell their Aeropress Go as a wholesaler, speaks volumes to how amazing these little coffee makers are. The Aeropress Coffee Maker is truly a work of art. It is small, efficient, capable of pulling a shot of espresso, and produces the perfect cup of coffee. If you are an outdoorsmen, or someone that does a lot of traveling, look no further than the Aeropress.
The Moka Pot often gets lumped in with the percolator, as it produces a strong concentrate of black coffee similarly to the percolator, but it is actually more similar to that of an espresso machine in terms of taste and extraction method. The Moka Pot produces what some call "stovetop espresso", and that is why we recommend these machines, especially if you want to make a latte without breaking the bank.
Siphon Coffee Maker
Siphon coffee may look like a crazy lab experiment, but it is actually quite an impressive machine that makes a wonderful cup of coffee. We go in depth later as to how these coffee makers work, but for what it's worth, trust us when we say that you are missing out if you have never tried coffee made this way. If you are a coffee maker collector, be sure to check out our reviews on the best Siphon coffee makers.
Nitro Cold Brew
Nitro Cold Brew has become the trendiest coffee trend of the past decade. With many cafes and craft breweries adopting this innovative beverage, many home coffee enthusiasts have started to prepare their own nitro cold brew at home, thanks to a few well engineered pieces of hardware. That is why we put together a list of the best nitro cold brew coffee makers out there, to ensure you have the best coffee experience at the comfort of your own home.
Commercial Coffee Makers
Being coffee professionals, it is important to stay up to date with the best coffee machine manufacturers within the industry, to ensure that we have the knowledge to suggest the greatest equipment for our wholesale vendors. For this reason, we are proud partners of Bunn and their Bunn Coffee Maker, but it is worth noting that there are quite a few manufacturers that produce a top of the line product that we also recommend. Check them out!
Turkish Coffee Pot
If you haven't tried Turkish Coffee, then we suggest buying a Turkish coffee pot and learning how to brew it, these make for some of the best coffee machines. Although it is more manual in nature, it is a delicious cross between drip coffee and espresso.
Conclusion: Best Drip Coffee Maker
If we had to pick one home coffee maker to splurge on from this list, it'd have to be the Breville Precision Brewer Coffee Maker. Although it's at a bit of a higher price point on our list, the customizability options are unmatched. If you're not into other modes of brewing coffee such as pour over, French press or using an Aeropress, the Breville is the route to take for a full bodied cup of Joe.
One of the most important factors in creating a delicious cup of coffee in a drip machine is grinding your own coffee beans. If you're not interested in purchasing a manual hand grinder or a separate burr grinder, maybe drip coffee makers with grinders built into them would suit your needs.