The best coffee machine for every budget

For many people, having a latte in the starbucks local coffee each morning is an integral part of their morning routine.

But making it at home can be more convenient, tastier and much cheaper per cup.

If you're considering home brewing, it can be hard to know where to start. There are many ways to brew coffee, and even once you've made that decision, there's a dizzying array of equipment to choose from.

The Independent has developed a comprehensive guide to help you make a decision.

You will need a maximum of three things to get started: coffee, a grinder (possibly) and deciding on a brewing method to buy a coffee machine.


The different types of coffee packaging

The coffee itself is quite simple. It's the seed of the coffee berry, picked and roasted. And it's always best fresh. There are three main forms of coffee that you'll probably consider; whole beans, ground coffee and capsules or pods.

Coffee beans

If you buy whole grains, they will need to be ground. Freshly ground grain makes for a fresher tasting cup, with the trade-off that grinding adds an extra (noisy) step to your brewing process.

The editor's favorite

Best Seller #1
Lavazza Café en Grains L' Espresso Italiano, Expresso 100% Arabica Équilibré et Aromatique, Paquet de 500 g
3 430 Avis
Lavazza Café en Grains L' Espresso Italiano, Expresso 100% Arabica Équilibré et Aromatique, Paquet de 500 g
  • Préparé à partir de grains 100% arabica soigneusement sélectionnés, L'Espresso Italiano est un café équilibré, aux notes florales. Sa torréfaction légère lui confère un résultat riche et aromatique
  • Un espresso italien à la texture infiniment crémeuse
  • 100% Arabica, Medium Roast, Strength 5
  • Aspect crème dorée et couleur chaude, Arôme notes florales, Goût délicat
  • Paquet de 500g. Café en grains, idéal pour la machine automatique et le moulin à grains

Ground coffee

If you buy ground coffee (which is either sitting on a supermarket shelf - or freshly ground in the store), you skip the grinding step but sacrifice freshness as the grounds oxidize over time.

PromoBest Seller #1
Lavazza Ground Coffee Il Mattino, Intense and Generous Espresso, Pack of 4 x 250 g [1kg]
1 606 Avis
Lavazza Ground Coffee Il Mattino, Intense and Generous Espresso, Pack of 4 x 250 g [1kg]
  • For this intense and generous coffee, Lavazza's expertise in selecting the best origins, carefully combining the finest robustas from Asia and Africa
  • The result is a coffee rich in aromas, which ends on a pleasant note of nuts. Ideal for lovers of balanced coffee, with a generous texture.
  • Arabica and Robusta, Light Roast, Intensity 10 Intense
  • Appearance Light Cream, Aroma Notes of dried fruits, Intense Taste
  • 1 kg package. Ideal for filter machine or manual machine

Coffee capsules

These two types of coffee will probably be cheaper and tastier than your third option: capsules. However, capsules - usually vacuum-sealed pods of coffee grounds for machines like Keurig and Nespresso - offer unparalleled levels of comfort, which is why they are often spotted in hotel rooms. You fill them with water and then press a button.

Coffee grinders and mills

Many coffee lovers insist that the greatest improvement to your cup of coffee can be found by grinding your fresh beans every time you make a cup.

The cost of a grinder can vary from around €30 to thousands of Euros, with consistency of grind size being one of the differentiating factors - a more uniform grind is preferable.

Bodum appliances are known for their durability, and this grinder is no exception. Because it uses flat, not conical filters and has no fancy features, it is best used as a coffee grinder than an espresso but would make a wonderful pour-over or drip coffee.

Best Seller #1
Bodum - 11160-01EURO-3 - BISTRO - Electric Slat Coffee Grinder - Black - 150 W
162 Notices
Bodum - 11160-01EURO-3 - BISTRO - Electric Slat Coffee Grinder - Black - 150 W
  • Stainless steel propeller, speed 30.000 rpm
  • Transparent lid to see the fineness of the grind
  • Maximum capacity: 60 gr of coffee beans
  • Easy to use: fill the tank with coffee beans, adjust the lid, press, ready!
  • Award-winning design
PromoBest Seller #2
BODUM - 10903-01EURO-3 - Bistro - Electric Coffee Grinder, Stainless Steel Grinder - 160 W - Black
124 Avis
BODUM - 10903-01EURO-3 - Bistro - Electric Coffee Grinder, Stainless Steel Grinder - 160 W - Black
  • 12 grind settings: fine (for espresso) to coarse (ideal for a piston coffee maker).
  • With conical grinder so that the grains are ground quickly, gently and evenly.
  • This small, space-saving device can also grind larger quantities with its 220 gram capacity.
  • With an adjustable timer function for even easier handling.
  • Antistatic borosilicate glass collection container to prevent the fine coffee powder from being inadvertently released.

If you are lost in the purchase of a good coffee grinder, we have written test the bodum bistro coffee grinder

Method and machine

Making a good cup of coffee at home depends heavily on what you use to make it. If you grind your own beans for the best flavor, you'd probably do best with a pour-over method or a French press.

Piston coffee maker

A simple process: add grounds, cover with water and plunge the filter in after a few minutes. The result is a full-bodied cup, but beware of coffee grounds sitting at the bottom of your cup.

Best Seller #1
Bodum - 1788-01 - Kenya - Piston Coffee Maker - 8 Cups - 1 L - Black
3 450 Avis
Bodum - 1788-01 - Kenya - Piston Coffee Maker - 8 Cups - 1 L - Black
  • Iconic design of the brand
  • Plastic frame and cover to protect the glass against shocks
  • Heat resistant (up to 250 degrees) and odorless borosilicate glass
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Bisphenol A free
  • Delivered in a gift box
PromoBest Seller #2
Bodum - 1903-01 - Java - 3 Cup Piston Coffee Maker - 0.35 L - Black
880 Notices
Bodum - 1903-01 - Java - 3 Cup Piston Coffee Maker - 0.35 L - Black
  • Colored plastic frame protects the glass and acts as a support
  • Heat resistant (up to 350 degrees) and odorless borosilicate glass
  • Made for over 40 years by expert craftsmen in our eco-friendly factory in Portugal
  • Environmentally friendly coffee preparation system (no paper filters or capsules)
  • All parts are dishwasher safe
  • Made in Europe

Chemex" type coffee makers

The coffee pour-over is simple. You pour a steady stream of hot water over coffee grounds sitting in a filtered cone on your mug. The resulting brew brings out some of the more subtle notes - the downside for those who prefer a punchy cup of Joe is that the flavors are more delicate.

Chemex coffee technology is a fast but efficient coffee brewing technique - and Bodum has taken it to the next level. All you'll need is a water boiler, and this coffee maker will do the trick for a long-drop coffee full of flavor.

Best Seller #1
Chemex Coffee maker 6 cups Wooden handle
4 666 Avis
Chemex Coffee maker 6 cups Wooden handle
  • For a wonderfully aromatic filter coffee.
  • Comfortable grip thanks to the heat-insulated wooden handle.
  • Filter coffee maker and decanter pot.
  • As one of the 100 most beautiful objects of the design in the Museum of Fashion in New York.
  • Gutter for precise pouring

Expresso

The difference between espresso and a regular cup of coffee comes down to the preparation. Instead of a slow brew, nearly boiling water is sent through high-pressure ground coffee beans, producing a caffeine hit in seconds.

The resulting shot is shorter, stronger and more intense than a regular cup of coffee.

Best Seller #1
Machine à expresso De'Longhi ECP 31.21 | Porte-filtre avec finition aluminium | Buse de mousse de lait | Filtre pour 1 ou 2 tasses Espresso | Convient également pour les dosettes | Noir
1 706 Avis
De'Longhi ECP 31.21 Espresso machine | Filter holder with aluminum finish | Milk froth nozzle | Filter for 1 or 2 cups Espresso | Also suitable for pods | Black
  • Professional filter holder with aluminum finish. 2 separate thermostats to control water and steam temperature
  • Hot water function.
  • Cappuccino System: the milk frothing nozzle mixes steam, air and milk to create a particularly creamy foam for a perfect cappuccino.
  • Suitable for ground espresso powder (1 or 2 cups) or pre-portioned E.S.E. pods. -
  • Accessory storage for the filters included in the delivery (for 1 or 2 cups and for the use of E.S.E. pods)
PromoBest Seller #2
Delonghi EC221.B Machine à Espresso Solo Pompe, Noir
831 Notices
Delonghi EC221.B Machine à Espresso Solo Pompe, Noir
  • Capacité : 1 l
  • Puissance : 1100 W
  • expresso solo pompe 15 bars
  • Color: Black
  • Composants inclus: Pick Left
  • Poids du colis: 4.54 kilograms

This machine is not a set-and-go affair, and if that's what you're looking for, here are some pod espresso machine suggestions below! The DeLonghi is for those who are pretty hands-on with their coffee and are willing to grind, tamp, weigh, time and pull their own espresso for the best possible results. It's a good size to sit on a countertop, not too bulky. One reviewer said, "It's so easy to use and relatively mess-free. It's a little noisy, but I don't mind. It works like a breeze and always produces great pours with beautiful cream marks. The milk frother works great with any type of milk and I only use almond or coconut milk. Being a barista years ago, I learned that some milks are really hard to get a nice velvety foam, and this machine does exactly that with almond milk! It's not latte art quality, but just close enough that it can be."

Coffee in pods

Some people like to buy and use pod coffee machines for convenience. It saves time and effort, perfect for those with early mornings and busy homes.

The Senseo coffee maker

The Senseo pod coffee maker is one of the most eco-friendly single cup options on the market, as it doesn't use plastic pods but mesh pods. It's small and compact, so it won't take up too much counter space. Perfect for someone who lives alone or for your cabin!

PromoBest Seller #1
Philips CSA210/61 SENSEO Original+ pod coffee machine, Black
1 470 Avis
Philips CSA210/61 SENSEO Original+ pod coffee machine, Black
  • A new design with a metal cup holder and matte finish
  • Intensity slider to choose your favorite classic or intense coffee
  • Crema plus function for a fine and smooth cream layer
  • More environmentally friendly with its automatic shut-off function and made from recycled plastics
  • Make one or two cups at a time
  • Compatible with Senseo pods
PromoBest Seller #2
Philips Senseo Original Plus, Machine à café à dosettes (Sélecteur d'intensité, Technologie Booster d'arômes, de plastiques recyclés), Blanc, CSA210/11
728 Avis
Philips Senseo Original Plus, Machine à café à dosettes (Sélecteur d'intensité, Technologie Booster d'arômes, de plastiques recyclés), Blanc, CSA210/11
  • A new design with a metal cup holder and matte finish
  • Intensity slider to choose your favorite classic or intense coffee
  • Crema plus function for a fine and smooth cream layer
  • More environmentally friendly with its automatic shut-off function and made from recycled plastics
  • Make one or two cups at a time

And if you're more of an espresso fan, but still want the convenience of pod coffee...

The Nespresso coffee maker

Nespresso is easily the sexiest of the pod coffee packs - just look at its brand ambassador, George Clooney. The sleek machines come in a variety of colors, and even the coffees they produce are Instagram-worthy: whether it's a tall cup or a short espresso, there's always an aesthetically pleasing layer of cream froth on top (so it looks a little like a Guinness). The level of coffee geekery involved is also unmatched.

Nespresso machines are really top of the line, and this is one of the best. With the ability to make a Ristretto, Espresso, Lungo, Cappuccino, Latte Macchiato, Flat White, Caffè Latte, Hot Milk and/or Hot Foam at the touch of a button, this machine is a game changer for coffee lovers with minimal coffee knowledge. One reviewer loved the machine, saying, "This Nespresso machine from De'Longhi is absolute perfection!

This is not our first Nespresso machine and to be honest, we have never hated a Nespresso and have never had a problem with quality or performance. Our machines have all been fantastic and this one is no exception. This machine adds even more features that we haven't seen before, like a flat white button and a Ristretto coffee drink. This is definitely an attractive and stylish machine to have in the kitchen as well! We love the look of this one, and it has a very modern updated look. We loved our last one too, but this one is even more stylish!

Best Seller #1
De'Longhi 203549 Inissia Nespresso Coffee Pot, Plastic, Black
23 929 Avis
De'Longhi 203549 Inissia Nespresso Coffee Pot, Plastic, Black
  • Flow Stop: automatic and programmable coffee quantity
  • Thermoblock heating system (ready to use after 25 seconds)
  • Auto power off mode after 9 minutes
  • Removable water tank with a capacity of 0.8 l
  • Expulsion of used capsules
  • The cup is not included

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Last updated on 2022-06-26 / Affiliated links

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