Our Top Picks
Best Overall: Mr. Coffee Café Espresso/Cappuccino System at Amazon
"A highly rated espresso machine complete with a milk frother."
Best for Multi-Sized Servings: Ninja Glass Carafe System at Amazon
"Brews everything from 4 ounces for the concentrated specialty brew to a full carafe."
Best Under $500: Nespresso Lattissima Pro Espresso Machine at Amazon
"Conveniently uses Nespresso pods, so there’s no messy grinding."
Runner-Up, Best Overall: Breville Espresso Machine at Amazon
"Reliable, durable, and produces consistently great coffee."
Best Commercial: La Pavoni Bar-Star Espresso Machine at Amazon
"Made for commercial use, it’s NSF and CSA certified."
Best Under $200: DeLonghi 15-Bar-Pump Espresso Maker at Amazon
"This espresso maker looks professional."
Best Stovetop: Bialetti Moka Stove Top Espresso Maker at Amazon
"It’s made from polished aluminum in a classic octagon shape."
Best with Grinder: Breville The Barista Espresso Machine at Amazon
"This machine has a built in carbon filter to remove impurities."
Best Splurge: Cuisinart Espresso Fully Automatic Machine at Amazon
"With the touch on the screen, the machine can grind the beans and more."
Best Non-Electric: AeroPress Espresso Maker at Amazon
"Great for travel or for that little cabin in the woods."
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Best Overall: Mr. Coffee ECMP1000 Café Espresso/Cappuccino System
Mr. Coffee is a very familiar name particularly for electric drip coffee machines, but they’ve also designed a highly rated espresso machine complete with a milk frother so you can have cappuccino or lattes at home any time you want one. Since this doesn’t use capsules, you can use any coffee you like, whether you grind it fresh or you buy it from the store. The water and milk reservoirs are both removable for easy filling and cleaning and a touch panel makes it simple to select the drink you want. You can also customize your drink or choose the manual setting for even more control. This has a 15-bar pump for perfect espresso, whether you choose a single shot or a double shot. The machine automatically goes to sleep after 15 minutes of non-use, saving you power.
Looking for a separate machine that can froth milk? Read through our best milk frothers article.
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Best for Multi-Sized Servings: Ninja Coffee Bar Glass Carafe System
Ninja has created a lot of appliances in the food world, like this coffee maker that can brew everything from 4 ounces for the concentrated specialty brew to a full carafe when you want your family wants their regular breakfast coffee. While it doesn’t brew under pressure, the specialty brew setting creates a coffee concentrate that can be used like a shot of espresso, and the frothing wand foams your milk so you can have beverages much like the ones served at your favorite coffee house.
There’s no need to add extra coffee grounds to make the richer or concentrated brews, since the machine does the work for you, just add the regular amount of coffee and press a button to get the type of coffee you like best.
Looking for new coffee beans to try? Check out the best coffee beans available online.
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Best Under $500: Nespresso Lattissima Pro Espresso Machine
It couldn’t be easier. This machine uses the convenient Nespresso pods, so there’s no need for messy grinding, filling, and tamping, and the foamer creates the perfect foam for layered coffee drinks that will wake up your morning or impress your guests. Even better, the Nespresso pods are made from aluminum, so they’re recyclable.
This machine uses 19 bars of pressure for the best flavor along with the perfect temperature for all your coffee drinks, whether you want a simple shot or an artistic cappuccino. The proprietary heating system takes cold water to the perfect brewing temperature in just a few seconds, so you’ll never have to wait for the machine to heat up.
The detachable milk container lets you store your milk in the refrigerator between coffee uses, and the auto-clean feature keeps the foamer clean. Coffee styles are pre-programmed, so you don’t need to remember settings—just choose ristretto, espresso, lungo, cappuccino, latte, steamed milk, or hot water with the press of a button.
Want to take a look at some other options? See our guide to the best coffee makers.
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Runner-Up, Best Overall: Breville BES920XL Espresso Machine
Yes, this espresso maker from Breville has a high price tag, but compared to some of the other machines on the market this machine is actually a steal. Plus, it’s reliable, durable, and produces consistently great coffee.
Dual-boiler espresso systems are undoubtedly the gold standard for home or commercial equipment: they allow the machine to maintain the optimum temperature for simultaneously brewing espresso coffee (195–205 degrees F) as well as for creating steam (closer to 250 degrees F), which means no waiting around, watching your crema disappear while you wait to steam milk. The Breville also has programmable options for softly pre-infusing the coffee, and has a control valve that monitors extraction pressure—two things most home machines don't feature. If espresso is your go-to coffee every day, this is the machine for you.
If you need some more help finding the perfect coffee maker for your home, check out our coffee maker buying guide.Continue to 5 of 11 below.
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Best Commercial: La Pavoni Bar-Star 2V-R - 2-Group Espresso Machine
While this is probably a little over the top for most casual home users, it would be quite impressive on the kitchen counter while you’re pulling shots of espresso during family holidays or dinner parties. Made for commercial use, it’s NSF and CSA certified so you can move it from your kitchen to your coffee shop. It has programmable dosing for the perfect shot of espresso every time, and a huge 14-liter copper boiler so you can make espresso shots for the entire neighborhood before you need to refill. A water softener and installation kit are included.
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Best Under $200: DeLonghi EC702 15-Bar-Pump Espresso Maker
Espresso machines don’t have to break the bank. This stainless steel 15-bar espresso maker looks professional, but it won’t take up half of your counter space while it brews one or two shots of espresso at a time. The water reservoir is removable for easy cleaning and filling, and holds 44 ounces of water, and a water level indicator lets you monitor remaining water so you won’t run out.
This machine can use either pods or your own ground coffee. While there’s no onboard milk reservoir, the included frother lets you make lattes and other coffee drinks easily.
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Best Stovetop: Bialetti Moka Stove Top Coffee and Espresso Maker
Made in Italy by a company that has been manufacturing coffee makers for over 80 years, this espresso maker takes less than five minutes to produce up to 3 demitasses (2 ounces) cups of espresso. It's made from polished aluminum in a classic octagon shape that will look good on your stove or table, while the shape also helps to diffuse heat perfectly. It has a patented safety valve for protection and is easy to disassemble for cleaning.
Making espresso is simple—just fill the lower pot with cold water to below the valve, insert the funnel and fill with ground espresso, then screw the upper part onto the base. Then, just heat until the water boils and coffee comes through the center post. When the top pot is full, the coffee is done.
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Best with Grinder: Breville The Barista Express Espresso Machine
Espresso aficionados will tell you that the brew is the best when the beans are ground fresh, and this machine makes that easy with an integrated conical burr grinder. Once you’ve got your grounds, the stainless steel portafilter, the razor dose trimming tool, and integrated tamper make sure you’ve got exactly the right amount of grounds, pressed correctly for the perfect brew. When you’re not making espresso, you can use the grinder on its own for your French press or cold brew coffee.
The water tank includes a carbon filter to remove impurities from the water before brewing, and it holds 2 liters of water, so you’ll have enough to make espresso for a crowd before you need a refill.
This 15-bar pressure machine has two presents for standard shot sizes, but you can override those for custom amounts, if you prefer. The steam wand finishes your beverage, with perfectly steamed milk for all your favorite coffeehouse drinks.
Looking for a separate coffee grinder? See our guide to the best coffee grinders.Continue to 9 of 11 below.
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Best Splurge: Cuisinart Espresso Defined Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
Espresso making can be an art, requiring skill in tamping and an education on how to pull the perfect shot. That’s great for some folks. Others just want an easy espresso … or cappuccino or latte. That’s where this machine really shines. With the touch on the screen, the machine grinds the beans, froths milk, and brews the coffee. It’s completely programmable, so you can adjust your brew strength as well as the amount of milk you’re adding, or just choose single or double espresso, cappuccino, latte, regular coffee, steamed milk, or hot water.
This can also brew larger quantities, so you can choose a carafe with 4, 6, or 8 cups. If you have pre-ground coffee, you can turn off the grinder function. The water reservoir holds 48 ounces and the coffee bean hopper holds 8 ounces.
Check out our guide to the best drip coffee makers you can buy today.
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Best Non-Electric: AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker
Great for travel, for that little cabin in the woods, or for anyone who is trying to avoid yet another appliance that will take up space on the counter, the AeroPress is a simple manual coffee maker that will make coffee or espresso, dispensing it right into your cup or mug. This includes a filter holder, so you can keep your filters right with the press when you store it, and it also includes a coffee scoop so you can measure the coffee properly, no matter whether you prefer full-strength or decaf.
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Best Compact: Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Machine
Nespresso has made its name as the go-to capsule espresso maker. The machines are easy to use, the capsules are recyclable, and the flavor is highly praised by users. This is one of the smallest Nespresso machines you’ll find, built to fit a slim space with the water reservoir behind the machine where it’s out of the way. This provides 19 bars of pressure for excellent extraction of the best flavor, and can be ready to brew in just 25 seconds after pressing the button to start the process. After 9 minutes, the machine turns itself off to save energy. This makes two sizes of coffee: espresso (1.35 ounce) and lungo (5 ounces) so it’s not as versatile as larger, more expensive machines, but it still makes a great cup. This includes a welcome pack of 14 capsules of different types of coffee, so you can find the one you like best before you commit to just one, or to a few.
Take a peek at our article, ways to improve your morning coffee.
Products Tested by The Spruce
How We Tested
We bought a top-rated espresso machine and our reviewers tested it for more than six hours. We asked our testers to consider the most important features when using this espresso machine, from its size to its performance. We’ve outlined the key takeaways here so that you, too, know what to look for when shopping.
What to Look for in an Espresso Machine
Ease of use Some espresso machines are simple to use, while others include many different settings to help you fine-tune your brew. No matter if you like experimenting with different features or if you’re happy to simply add coffee and let the machine do the work, there’s an option for you — just think about what you prefer.
Frothing A machine with built-in frothing capability gives you a wide range of fancy coffee drinks that you can create, but it also gives you one more thing to clean and maintain. Do you need to froth milk? Does this versatility offset the extra cleaning? Also, since there are separate devices that can froth milk, you may still want to buy a machine without this capability that's otherwise perfect for you.
Size A very large machine will likely make a permanent home on your counter, while a very small machine can easily be moved in and out of storage. Mid-sized machines can be moved if you need the counter space. Consider how much room you have, as well as how portable you’d like your machine to be.
Test Results: Mr. Coffee ECMP1000 (Best Overall)
What We Like
Nice variety of drinks
Quality flavor at decent price
What We Don't Like
Difficult to clean
“I’d recommend this espresso machine to someone who loves coffee but isn't a coffee expert,” declared one of our testers. “It's a fun little appliance that enables you to make lots of different drinks.” Our reviewers also liked its compact size and thought the quality of the coffee flavor was good, especially for the price. On the other hand, one of our testers thought it was “louder than anticipated” and difficult to clean. One reviewer also thought that learning how to use it was “a little challenging” at first, but easy once she got the hang of it.