Why spend five bucks for your fix of morning coffee drinks every day at coffee shops when you can have the best home espresso machine right in your kitchen? The idea of owning your own espresso maker may seem intimidating, but they’re pretty simple to use, even for the most entry-level home brewers. Plus, you’ll have espresso shots available to you around the clock. You’ve got to keep energized throughout the day somehow, right? It also means you’ll be saving cash, time, and fuel.
If you’ve never made your own espresso at home, maybe it’s time you start. While these espresso machines may seem more intimidating than a French press, drip coffee maker, or soluble instant coffee, they’re not that hard to use. Thanks to the espresso machines we’re looking at today, you can accomplish the flavor of a real espresso and achieve the right temperature, crema, and other offerings to your desire. With an espresso quality you won’t get anywhere else—except maybe the coffee shop.
Without further ado, let me introduce you to some of the best home espresso machines to date thus far.
1. Gaggia Classic Pro Brushed Stainless Steel Semi-Automatic Espresso Machine
The Gaggia Classic Pro Brushed Stainless Steel Semi-Automat machine is versatile and easy-to-use. While easy for making espresso, it still has what it takes to provide a fantastic brew for those who want coffee-snobs-level coffee. Perhaps the crema provided by the Gaggia is one of the best benefits it offers, apart from its overall performance. It certainly deserves a spot on our best espresso machine units list.
But this espresso machine is not for you if you want to make espresso into large cups as only smaller cups will fit under the machine’s drip. Additionally, if you want an espresso machine with a quality steam wand, this espresso maker doesn’t provide the best. That said, opt for another frother, and you’ll be good to go with this line of Gaggia Semi-Automatic Espresso Machines.
- Can use both fine coffee grounds and E.S.E. espresso pods
- Turbo steam water adapter lets you froth milk
- Semi-automatic machines like this one are easy for pulling a shot quickly
- 72 oz removable reservoir for water
- Cup warming surface (holds up to five espresso cups)
- Three-way solenoid valve to relieve water pressure off coffee when brew switch isn’t on
- 15 bar pump
2. Breville Infuser Espresso Machine (BES840XL)
Many find that the BPA-free Breville Espresso Machine is one of the best espresso machines out there. It’s even a step up from the much-loved Breville Bambino model. It has a gorgeous yet simple design featuring a cup warming rack, brews with a well-balanced flavor, and has convenient “Clean Me” and “Empty Me” alerts to remind users to maintain their espresso machine.
The Breville Semi-Automatic Espresso Machine provides a great brew every time by slowly pressurizing the grinds before increasing in pressure. Plus, thanks to the pressure gauge, you can track the extracting process. You’ll never get anything but a delicious espresso from this product. Best of all, this Breville espresso machine comes with a plethora of accessories from a coffee scoop to a cleaning tool.
- Removable 61 oz water reservoir
- Low-pressure pre-infusion
- Tops other semi-automatic espresso machines in reliability
- PID temperature control
- Automatic water temperature adjustment
- Cup warming rack
- Accessories included: coffee scoop, cleaning tool, single and dual wall filter basket, cleaning disc and tablets, water filter with holder, and stainless steel jug
3. Nespresso Inissia Original Espresso Machine with Aeroccino Milk Steamer Bundle
This next item is very affordable and compact in size, making it ideal for a small apartment, dorm, classroom, or office. If a coffee pod espresso machine is what you’re looking for, this one is right up your alley. You’ll consistently get an amazing cup of joe without any of the intimidating steps to making espresso.
The fact that the water reservoir can be removed is incredibly convenient, especially for a smaller, more affordable espresso maker.
With the purchase of your Nespresso Inissia Original Espresso Machine, you’ll be gifted a lovely selection of different-flavored Nespresso capsules. To top it off (literally), you can use the high-quality Aeroccino 3 milk frother to make latte art with steamed milk on your hot or cold brew. But if you prefer brewing with freshly-ground beans, this of Nespresso espresso maker probably isn’t the best choice.
- Fully automatic brewing
- Smart energy-saving mode
- Aeroccino 3 milk foam frother included
- Removable tank
- Up to 19 bars of pressure
- Free gift: Nespresso Original welcome kit with 14 different capsules
4. Gaggia Brera Espresso Machine in Black
We have another Gaggia machine to show off: the Brera. This line of moderately-priced super-automatic espresso makers offers a user-friendly LED screen with push-button controls to make your espresso-making easy with both coffee grounds or whole espresso beans. Its rapid steam technology heats up coffee exceptionally fast without much sound through the brewing process.
If you decide to opt for lattes, cappuccinos, and macchiatos with these Gaggia super-automatic machines, you have that option too. The Pannarello steam milk wand is fast, ready to use right away, and leaves no air bubbles in your milk froth. However, if there are any complaints to be made about this machine, its that the steam wand can only be rotated left to right and not forward. Otherwise, it’s a great super-automatic machine with wonderful value.
- 15 bars of pressure
- Easy-to-read LED display
- Rapid steam technology
- Supports both ground coffee and whole coffee beans
- Programmable features: Choose your coffee strength and aroma
- Airtight 8.8 oz hopper for storing extra coffee beans
- Includes a ceramic coffee grinder
- Made in Italy
5. Nespresso Essenza Mini Espresso Machine by De’Longhi, Lime
Let’s talk about another Nespresso machine, shall we? The Nespresso Essenza Mini is one of the cutest compact espresso makers by far. It’s offered in its signature lime, cherry red, or all-black. The tank for the water is snug in the back of the machine to keep the device looking clean and narrow from the front. Oh, and it’s very efficient for being a little guy, brewing you a cup in 30 seconds. It’s like having a home barista, but for much cheaper.
Like the other Nespresso we looked at above, this model comes with a tasty selection of Nespresso capsules to get you going. Even if you aren’t into capsule machines and are thinking of going for a more luxurious, higher-end espresso maker, this Nespresso machine might just change your mind.
- Two programmable buttons
- 3-oz water reservoir
- 19 bar high-pressure pump
- Heats up in under 30 seconds
- Energy consumption feature
- Free gift: Nespresso Original welcome kit with 16 different capsules
6. De’Longhi Dedica Pump Espresso Machine (EC680)
Like the other DeLonghi above, notice the similar compact design offered by this model. For those who want larger cups, you’ll like that this espresso maker accommodates taller cups, bringing versatility to the table.
To add to the versatility, you can brew coffee with ESE espresso pods or ground coffee and opt for a single or a double shot. Fortunately, the manual frother for steaming milk works fantastically and is strategically placed and not in the way of other parts of the machine. Additionally, if you or your friend want to brew up a cup too, there is no wait time between cups as this unit’s Rapid Cappuccino System maintains at the ideal temperature.
- Energy conservation feature
- 32-oz or one-liter water tank capacity
- 15 bars of pressure
- Adjustable cup height
- 3-in-1 filter
- Does the work of traditional espresso and pod machines
7. Nespresso CitiZ Espresso Machine by De’Longhi, Black
Okay, so we’re back at it again with a Nespresso capsule machine. This time, however, we’re looking at the CitiZ model. It’s another slim, compact machine that is within the budget of most prospective espresso machine buyers. The water reservoir may be small, but there’s a lot this product can offer in terms of flavor and precision.
The Nespresso CitiZ system is quick to heat, providing you espresso in just 25 seconds flat. Of course, like with many other Nespresso machines, this model too comes with a Nespresso Original capsule welcome kit. One nifty feature I personally love about this appliance is that it offers a container where used capsules are deposited, making it easy for you to recycle them later. Given the size and the easy clean-up, this machine is ideal for offices where many people may be using it.
- 34 oz tank for water
- 19 bar pump system
- Energy efficiency
- Handy mess-proof drip tray makes it easy to clean
- Two programmable Espresso and Lungo buttons
- The system heats up in only 25 seconds
- Free gift: Nespresso Original capsule welcome kit
8. Rancilio Silvia M Espresso Machine
The Rancilio Silvia M is another fantastic espresso machine for home, but it’s going to come to you for a cost – a semi-hefty cost. It’s durable with an iron frame with a gorgeous stainless steel brushing, and it whips up some mean espressos. This is a machine if you love to drink several cups of espresso a day; it can handle the abuse, even long-term. Plus, this Rancilio machine offers a fully-articulating steam wand that works like a charm, which not every great espresso machine offers, unfortunately.
I’d say a downside is that if you want a burr grinder, you’ll have to purchase one if you don’t already have one at home. I’d think that being a moderate-to-higher cost, an integrated grinder would be included. But for smooth coffee with flawless frothing milk capacities, I can’t say I’m bummed by such a minor con.
- Articulating stainless steel steam wand
- Three-way solenoid valve
- Temperature ready light
- Adjustable expansion valve
- Cup warmer
- Two-year warranty
- Accessories included: coffee scoop, plastic tamper, and single and double filter baskets
9. Mr. Coffee Café Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker, Silver
Just by looking at the machine and glancing at the price point, you can probably already see why this Mr. Coffee 3-in-1 machine is considered one of the best espresso machines out there. The Café Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker is one of the quickest and offers the most flavor among several other Mr. Coffee makers. It features removable water and milk tanks, automatic milk frothing cycles, and the option to choose between single or double shots.
The easy-touch control panel and ability to select different drink options at a press of a button makes this device incredibly easy, even for newbies. But opting for Mr. Coffee doesn’t just mean getting a quality espresso maker; it also means supporting a dedicated company that is willing to troubleshoot any issues you may encounter.
- 3-in-1 device: espresso, cappuccino, and latte maker
- One-touch control panel
- Automatic frothing and steaming milk mechanism
- 15 bar pump system
- Programmed cleaning cycle
- Removable water and milk reservoirs
- Accessories included: measuring scoop/tamper, a single and double filter, and a recipe book
10. Nespresso VertuoPlus Coffee and Espresso Machine by De’Longhi, Grey
If you want a great espresso coffee machine with a very narrow, sleek design, the Nespresso VertuoPlus Coffee and Espresso Maker may appeal to you. Really, anyone who loves rich, thick coffee will love this little machine. It allows you to pick from several coffee sizes and utilizes smart technology that allows the machine to “read” the barcodes on compatible espresso capsules to make sure you get the best blend. When you’re done, clean-up is easy with its nifty compartment for used espresso capsules. It’s convenient, it’s smart, and it provides great quality.
However, while the machine does initially come with Nespresso Original capsules, continuing to buy these can get expensive – even more so than Keurig. But if you like the simplicity and variety of flavor options provided by Nespresso, this wouldn’t be a huge downside for some.
- 40-oz tank for water
- Patented Centrifusion Extraction Technology
- Single-touch brewing
- Capsule recognition thanks to smart bar-coding reading technology
- Motorized head
- Automatic shut-off
- Heats in 15 seconds or less
- Removable container to hold 13 to 20 used capsules
- Descaling alert
- Free gift: Nespresso Original welcome kit with 12 capsules
11. Saeco HD8857/47 Philips Exprellia EVO Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
We have yet to look at a Saeco espresso machine, but we might as well since this is one of the better brands available – but it’s not cheap. However, its offer a lot: a very presentable appearance, silent operation. drink versatility (espresso, cappuccino, latte, café mocha), quick coffee delivery, the perfect froth for latte art, and the ability to customize your brew and save it for later (e.g., grinding, the right amount of milk, coffee richness, etc.). Additionally, this machine, thanks to its ceramic grinders, will never taste burnt.
I’d say this is a good home model for those who know exactly what they want in a cup of espresso. When you’re particular, it can be hard to find the features you need to make espresso up to your standards, but you really can with this Saeco unit. But if anything could make this better, it would be a larger water tank.
- Automatic cleaning and descaling
- Quiet ceramic grinders included
- Ability to save your personal settings
- Saeco Adapting System to automatically adjust grind size
- Double boiler
How to Choose the Right Coffee Machine?
There are many things to keep in mind when it comes to finding the best espresso machines for your espresso lover’s wants and needs. These are the most important factors you need to know to look for:
Home espresso makers are notorious for not being affordable. Thus, when you invest in one, you have to make sure you’re getting the best bang for your buck. Figure out what is your maximum budget and refine your online search that way. Keep in mind that the more features your espresso machine has, the more expensive it will be. Decide what features you absolutely want and which ones you’d be okay without. It will make the task of finding the best espresso machine in your budget all the easier.
Are you looking for a home espresso maker that grinds the beans for you? Or would you rather get a model that only works with coffee pods?
This is an important thing to keep in mind. If you already have a good-quality coffee bean grinder at home, you don’t need a machine with a built-in burr grinder. But if you want the freshest coffee drink with the best flavor, it’s a good idea to look at espresso machines that can also do the grinding for you.
Some home espresso machines only brew one espresso shot or two espresso shots at once. While others have an attached steam wand that lets you froth milk and make delicious cappuccinos. If the quintessential espresso shot is the only drink you’re after, you can go for a simpler model. But if you want to make fancier barista-skills espresso drinks at home, don’t skip out on all-in-one settings and features.
Ease of Cleanup
How easy will it be to clean your espresso machine after you’re done using it? Does the reservoir for the water come off to allow for a speedier cleanup process? What about the drip tray, if it has one? There’s quite a bit to consider. Keep this in mind before you commit to a specific machine.
Ease of Use
Of course, you need a machine that’s easy to use. It might be a good idea to skip out on some bells and whistles if you know you’ll have a hard time adjusting to the coffee maker. Sometimes, simple pod machine designs are better.
Since home espresso machines are so expensive, your money has to go a long way. Otherwise, there would be no financial reward in ditching the coffee shop. The best way to ensure your investment is safe is to choose a durable and sturdy machine. Look into customer reviews to see how reliable each model is. If you can find one with a good warranty policy, all the better!
Size does matter, especially because some espresso makers can be very bulky. Check how much counter space you’ll have for your latest addition to the kitchen. If you’re living in a small apartment, getting a compact model will pay off. Plus, if you’re looking for a portable espresso machine to take to events, a compact model will also be on your side.
What Are the Best Espresso Machine Brands?
Some of the most popular espresso home appliances include:
- La Pavoni
Some of these brands are more affordable while others are name brands. Each company may offer different features in the espresso machines. That said, it is important to look at different espresso machines offered by different espresso machine manufacturers to find the best one for you.