Bean to cup coffee machines are growing in popularity every year with good reason, they make coffee just like you buy at Starbucks or Costa Coffee, but for a fraction of the price.

The fact you have found your way here by simply googling best bean to cup coffee machines means that a) you have read or a friend has told you how good bean to cup coffee machines are and b) you are wondering if you should buy one yourself.

Stop, Do not Buy a Bean to Cup Coffee Machine Just Yet.

Not what you expected me to say, right?  The answer is no because before you decide which coffee machine you are going to buy you need to work out what type of coffee machine user you are.

Coffee machine user?  You might be wondering at this point what I am talking about.  Well it is quite simple.  Different coffee machines are designed for different types of users.  You have amateur home baristas, bean to cup coffee users, filter coffee users and coffee pod machine users.

Amateur Home Baristas

Amateur home baristas as people who want to control every aspect of their coffee.  From grinding the coffee beans to the perfect size, optimising the strength, pressure and water to make the perfect espresso.  Amateur home baristas tend to use a separate grinder, dual boiler espresso machine and milk frother.  Our home espresso machine guide reviews the best of what is available on the market today and will help you find the best espresso maker for the perfect home barista experience.

Bean to Cup Coffee Machine Users

Bean to cup coffee machine users want to have as close to the coffee shop coffee without having to have the expertise of making it, quickly and easily.

Bean to cup coffee machines often have the coffee bean grinder built into the machine and give you around 10 grind settings to tailor your coffee grinding.  They also have a lot less options for tweaking your espresso to get the perfect shot.  They do however make excellent coffee and are fairly easy to use once you have played around with them.

Essentially they are a setup and leave coffee maker.  Find a grind size you want, select if you want a single or double shot, press the button and the machine does the rest.

Bean to Cup Filter Coffee Users

These machines are perfect for people who want to make a pot of coffee and not an espresso shot, but who also appreciate that grinding fresh beans gives you a much better flavour.

Perfect for families and small offices.

Pod Coffee Machine Users

These coffee makers are perfect for anyone who wants convenience, wants something better than instant coffee and likes to make other drinks, not just coffee.

The main brands are Tassimo and Nespresso but you also have Dolce Gusto, Lavazza and Illy.  Our No Nonsense pod coffee machine guide will help you find the perfect machine for your tastes and wallet.

Best Bean to Cup Espresso Machines

If you are looking for the best automated barista at home experience, the models below are truly amazing and as such the price is premium too, but you really do get what you pay for here and there is no other way of getting the bean to cup coffee shop experience and taste at home.

De'Longhi Magnifica, Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Espresso, Cappuccino, ESAM 4200.S, Silver
De'Longhi Magnifica S, Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Espresso and Cappuccino Maker, ECAM22.110.B, Black [Amazon Exclusive]
Best Value
Melitta SOLO & Perfect Milk E957-103, Fully Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Automatic Cappuccino Maker, Silver
Melitta CI TOUCH F630-102 Compact Bean to Cup Coffee Machine for Office or Home, Stainless Steel, 1400 W, 1.8 Litres, Black
De'Longhi Eletta Cappuccino, Fully Automatic Bean to Cup Machine, Espresso, Coffee Maker, ECAM 45.760.W, White
Top Pick
Sage SES880BSS the Barista Touch Semi Automatic Espresso Machine, 1700 W
Brand
De'Longhi Magnifica ESAM4200
De'Longhi Magnifica S Ecam E22
Melitta SOLO
Melitta CI TOUCH
De'Longhi Eletta
Sage Barista Touch
Type
Manual Milk Frother
Manual Milk Frother
Automatic Milk Frother
Automatic & Manual Milk Frother
Automatic & Manual Milk Frother
Automatic & Manual Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
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De'Longhi Magnifica, Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Espresso, Cappuccino, ESAM 4200.S, Silver
Brand
De'Longhi Magnifica ESAM4200
Type
Manual Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
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Customer Rating
-
Click to Check Price
De'Longhi Magnifica S, Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Espresso and Cappuccino Maker, ECAM22.110.B, Black [Amazon Exclusive]
Brand
De'Longhi Magnifica S Ecam E22
Type
Manual Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
26,807 Reviews
Customer Rating
Click to Check Price
Best Value
Melitta SOLO & Perfect Milk E957-103, Fully Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Automatic Cappuccino Maker, Silver
Brand
Melitta SOLO
Type
Automatic Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
1,508 Reviews
Customer Rating
Click to Check Price
Melitta CI TOUCH F630-102 Compact Bean to Cup Coffee Machine for Office or Home, Stainless Steel, 1400 W, 1.8 Litres, Black
Brand
Melitta CI TOUCH
Type
Automatic & Manual Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
389 Reviews
Customer Rating
Click to Check Price
De'Longhi Eletta Cappuccino, Fully Automatic Bean to Cup Machine, Espresso, Coffee Maker, ECAM 45.760.W, White
Brand
De'Longhi Eletta
Type
Automatic & Manual Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
2,178 Reviews
Customer Rating
Click to Check Price
Top Pick
Sage SES880BSS the Barista Touch Semi Automatic Espresso Machine, 1700 W
Brand
Sage Barista Touch
Type
Automatic & Manual Milk Frother
Customer Reviews
155 Reviews
Customer Rating
Click to Check Price

1.  Sage Barista Touch

Breville / Sage Oracle Touch Bean to Cup Coffee MachineThe Sage Barista Touch is an updated version of the Sage Barista Express, which is one of our favourite bean to cup coffee machines.  The Barista Touch has all of the great features of the Barista Express but is now more automated with its LCD screen allowing you to select the type of coffee from a pre-programmed list of favourites, or create and save your own.  The coffee machine then takes over and once the portafilter is locked in place it chooses the perfect amount of water to produce the correct strength shot, warms and textures the milk for your chosen coffee including making micro foam perfect for latte art!

Style

Lets face it, Sage coffee machines look fantastic and will get comments from visitors in any kitchen.  The brushed stainless steal finish looks really classy but personally I prefer the Black Truffle models as the chrome parts really catch the eye and the coffee machine looks a little more subtle and understated.  Less bling, but coffee which your guests will love.

Build Quality

Simply superb.  Again, all Sage coffee machines are built really well, the quality of the materials used for all of Breville’s coffee makers is second to none and gives you confidence that you have a bean to cup coffee machine which will last for many years.

Integrated Coffee Grinder

Like the Barista Express, the Touch has a built in conical burr grinder which grinds your fresh coffee beans perfectly either automatically once you have selected your drink from the touch screen, or manually allowing you to have full dose control for stronger espresso’s.

Hands Free Coffee Grinding Operation

The coffee grinding cradle allows you to secure the portafilter so the coffee grinder can deliver the ground coffee directly, so all you have to do is tamp, trim and secure in the head ready for your espresso shot.

Automatic Milk Microfoam

Barista Touch MicrofoamDo you love great tasting coffee?  Can you tell the difference great and average at a glance?  The giveaway is the milk.  Is it silky microfoam or something else? 

Professional baristas make it balanced, smooth, delicious with a silky glossy surface.  That’s microfoam, whilst imitator’s milk looks weak, watery, foamy and layered.  Thats not microfoam.

Creating microfoam starts with powerful steam adding heat to create thousands of tiny bubbles that capture the delicate flavours of the espresso and unlock the sweetness of the milk.  When you taste the coffee these bubbles burst on your tongue creating the perfect balance of espresso flavour and rich sweet milk. 

Can the Sage Barista Touch really make microfoam that good, without you knowing what you are doing?  Put simply, yes.  The Barista Touch makes coffee as it should be and latte art is proof its true microfoam. All you have to do is learn how to create latte art!

Precise Espresso Extraction

The PID system, which stands for Digital Temperatue Control supplies water to the ground coffee at the perfect temperature to ensure the espresso is extracted as efficiently as possible for maximum taste and aroma.

Faster Heat up Time

The marketing blurb claims that the Barista Touch can be ready to use in only 3 seconds.  Surely that is not possible right?  Wrong, the proprietary Sage ThermoJet heating system has the machine ready to make your coffee in only 3 seconds, which is astonishing!

Touch Screen Controls

The simple to use touch screen display allows you to either choose a pre-programmed coffee, for example a latte, or to customise your perfect coffee for strength, milk texture and size and then save it for future use.

Extremely easy to use and very helpful.

Features:

  • Touch screen controls
  • Ability to add 6 personalised coffee styles
  • Comes with 5 pre-programmed coffees (catering for most people)
  • 3 second heat up time
  • Beautiful design with a quality feel
  • 29 grinder settings, perfect for any coffee bean
  • Automatic or manual milk steaming
Sage SES880BSS the Barista Touch Semi Automatic Espresso Machine, 1700 W
155 Reviews
Sage SES880BSS the Barista Touch Semi Automatic Espresso Machine, 1700 W
  • The Sage Barista Touch delivers third wave speciality coffee at home using the 4 keys formula and is part of the Barista Series that offers all in one espresso machines with integrated grinder to go...
  • DOSE CONTROL GRINDING: With a single touch, the integrated precision conical burr grinder with dose control delivers the right amount of coffee on demand, for maximum flavour
  • OPTIMAL WATER PRESSURE: Low pressure pre-infusion gradually increases pressure at the start and helps ensure all the flavours are drawn out evenly during the extraction for a balanced tasting cup

Sage Barista Touch Summary

Sage made a fantastic bean to cup coffee machine with the Barista Express, the Sage Barista Touch takes it to a whole new level, automating making great tasting coffee whilst still allowing you to manually tailor the process at every step.

If you have the money, this is the bean to cup coffee machine we would buy.  Actually we did!

2.  DeLonghi Magnifica ESAM 4200

delonghi coffee machine esam 4200For the price, the DeLonghi Magnifica ESAM4200 is one of the best bean to cup coffee machines available and our favourite, all things considered.  The DeLonghi Magnifica ESAM4200 is an automated coffee maker that offers an impressive range of features for the dedicated fan.

Not only does this machine grind beans in order to produce a rich, vibrant flavour, but it also offers you plenty of customisation options to help you tailor every inch of your drink (e.g. temperature, strength, etc.) to fit your tastes.

The Delonghi Magnifica ESAM4200 is a must have for any budding barista taking their first steps into domestic bean to cup coffee makers.

Making an espresso or an americana only requries the touch of a button and using the traditional milk frother, you can make the perfect lungo, latte, cappuccino, or any other milky drink. It produces 15-bar restaurant standard brews in the comfort of your own home and in the simplest way – Click here for the full DeLonghi ESAM 4200 Magnifica review.

De'Longhi Magnifica, Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Espresso, Cappuccino, ESAM 4200.S, Silver
  • INTEGRATED GRINDER: Includes an integrated Coffee burr grinder with 7 adjustable coarseness levels; the beans are ground instantly for fuller flavour and a fresher cup of Coffee
  • MILK FROTHER: Be your own barista and prepare your idealy Cappuccino with the adjustable MILK FROTHER - warm-up milk or easily prepare a creamy and dense foam
  • CUSTOMISE Coffee: Make all your Coffee shop favourite drinks with the Magnifica ESAM 4200; whether you like a strong espresso or long frothy cappuccino, this machine will deliver the ideal drink

3. Melitta SOLO & Perfect Milk E957-103

Melitta SOLO & Perfect Milk E957-103The Melitta Caffeo Solo & Perfect Milk bean to cup coffee machine is not the best bean to cup coffee machine I have used but it is excellent for the price.  It looks fantastic, has a small footprint, is extremely easy to use and makes excellent milky espresso coffees.

One of the reasons for the lower price is that the Melitta Caffeo Solo does not have a built in milk carafe.  This is not a bad thing as the cappuccinatore system allows you to put the milk frothing pipe into a bottle of milk and it sucks it up, froths it and transfers it to your espresso, perfect for a milky coffee.  I quite like this feature as it means that all you have to do is run steam through the pipe to clean it and wipe it down.  Much easier than storing the milk carafe in your fridge each time.

Obviously you are not going to get perfect textured milk but its simplicity cannot be denied and for most bean to cup coffee users it will be perfect.

Melitta Companion App – The phone companion app gives you access to tips and tricks, instructions for making a latte, macchiato, cappuccino, americano and so many more types of coffee.  There are also several features for servicing your coffee machine and a diagnostic tool to resolve issues and check the current status.  Pretty cool and very helpful.

Cleaning and Maintenance – Cleaning and maintenance is a breeze with the Melitta Caffeo Solo & Perfect Milk.  The removable brewing unit can be cleaned under the kitchen tap and the inside of the machine is kept clean with a damp cloth.  Best of all, the Melitta Caffeo Solo & Perfect Milk will notify you when you need to clean and descale it.

Height Adjustable – Personally we use a variety of coffee cups and glasses depending on the type of coffee we are making, so having the ability to adjust the height of the coffee outlet is really helpful and allows us to use tall latte glasses and travel mugs without issue.

Auto Cappuccinatore – As I mentioned earlier, the auto cappuccinatore prepares your milk for you, allowing you to choose how much you want for your coffee with the simple turn of a knob.

Aroma Extraction System – Not only do you have the ability to choose how strong you want your coffee or how small your coffee beans are ground, the aroma extraction system also has a nifty feature where it dampens the ground coffee before forcing the water through at high pressure which adds subtle tones to the flavour of the espresso produced.

Easy Operation – Lastly, the Melitta Caffeo Solo & Perfect Milk is extremely easy to use with a simple LED display and controls meaning that even complete newbies will be making coffee shop quality coffee in no time at all.

Features:

  • Auto pre-infusion (for enhanced shot quality).
  • Small and looks great
  • Extremely easy to clean
  • Automated milk system
  • Easy to make great coffee
Melitta SOLO & Perfect Milk E957-103, Fully Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Automatic Cappuccino Maker, Silver
1,508 Reviews
Melitta SOLO & Perfect Milk E957-103, Fully Automatic Bean to Cup Coffee Machine, Automatic Cappuccino Maker, Silver
  • Enjoy your daily coffee just the way you like it with this fresh bean coffee machine Choose between an expresso or an americano Suitable for cups up to 13 5 cm (5 3 in) thanks to height-adjustable...
  • Preparation of coffee hot milk cappuccino hot water and hot or cold lattes For expresso americano cappuccino latte macchiato and lattes Melitta Companion App Tips and tricks for delicious moments of...
  • Exceptional taste Genuine fresh coffee enjoyment cup after cup thanks to the Aroma-Extraction-System for maximum coffee enjoyment 3 settings for adjusting coffee strength Double-cup mode

4.  Melitta Caffeo Barista

Melitta Caffeo BaristaIf you want to spend a little less money but still have one of the best bean to cup coffee machines in your kitchen the Melitta Caffeo Barista is an excellent choice.

The silver Melitta Caffeo Barista Automatic coffee maker immediately has the appearance of a professional machine with its bulky shape, sleek controls and the sizeable looking milk frother attached to the side. This machine would fit right in to Costa or Starbucks as much as the average home kitchen.

With its tough grinder it can create coffee from bean to cup for two different users at a time and guarantees “variety for coffee lovers” through a variety of drinks at a consistently high quality.

It’s this sense of quality and variety that lures buyers who are looking for a more professional, flawless machine, but are these qualities coming through in the use of this machine and the final product? – Click here for the full Melitta Caffeo Barista review.

Melitta F83/0-101 Barista T Smart Coffee Machine, 1450 W, 1.8 liters, Silver
190 Reviews
Melitta F83/0-101 Barista T Smart Coffee Machine, 1450 W, 1.8 liters, Silver
  • Included components: 1 x Pressure coffee maker from Melitta Barista T Smart Silver, user manual

5.  Sage Barista Express

Sage-Heston-Blumenthal-Barista-Express-GrinderSage has done it again, but this time creating on of the best bean to cup coffee machines available today.  Create great tasting espresso – from bean to cup – in no more than a minute.

The Barista Express allows you to grind the beans right before extraction, and its interchangeable filters and a large range of automatic or manual operations ensure quality, professional results quicker than you can drink!

Dose-Control Grinding. The integrated conical burr grinder with dose control delivers the perfect amount of coffee on demand, ensuring maximum flavour. Its adjustable grind size and dose let you customise to suit your tastes.

Precise Espresso Extraction. Digital temperature control (PID) delivers water at exactly the right temperature, ensuring the finest espresso extraction. The Sage Razor™ dosing tool trims the puck for a perfect dose and extraction  – Click here for the full Sage Barista Express review.

Sale - 17% Off
Sage BES875UK The Barista Express with Temp Control Milk Jug, Brushed Stainless Steel
  • The Sage Barista Express delivers third wave speciality coffee at home using the 4 keys formula and is part of the Barista Series that offers all in one espresso machines with integrated grinder to go...
  • DOSE CONTROL GRINDING: Integrated precision conical burr grinder grinds on demand to deliver the right amount of freshly ground coffee directly into the portafilter for your preferred taste with any...
  • OPTIMAL WATER PRESSURE: Low pressure pre-infusion gradually increases pressure at the start and helps ensure all the flavours are drawn out evenly during the extraction for a balanced tasting cup

Why Buy a Bean to Cup Machine?

If you are looking for the all in one solution, these machines do exactly what it says on the tin, load them up with beans, choose your options and press the button.  A £300-£1500 coffee machine is obviously not as good as a £5000 commercial espresso machine, but they do produce coffee which rivals Costa, Starbucks or your local shop.  So if we are talking about £’s vs quality, bean to cup coffee machines are the sweet spot, they deliver the best bang for your £.

You can find partial and full reviews of the best bean to cup coffee machines further up the page or in our How to Choose the Best Espresso Machine guide.

Buyers Guide

The bean to cup coffee machines we mentioned today, basically allow you to make espresso-style coffee.  From there you can go on to make flat whites, cappuccinos, lattes, Americanos and more.  However, they are not the only type of coffee maker you can buy.

  • Espresso coffee machines: These are just like the devices that are used in cafés and coffee shops like Starbucks and Costa Coffee. You’ll generally need to be quite involved in the preparation of the drink.
  • Bean-to-cup coffee machines: As discussed, they allow you to grind beans from scratch to give you a fresh drink.
  • Capsule or Pod coffee machines: They utilize pre-prepared coffee pods for a simple and quick brew. Generally, you’ll be restricted to a certain type of capsules, and the pods can be a bit expensive or hard to recycle.

What Kind of Bean to Cup Espresso Machine?

So what are the pros and cons of each type of coffee machine?  To help, we have put together a simple guide so you can find the perfect fit for your taste and requirements.

Bean-To-Cup Coffee Machines

If you are looking for easy to make, fresh great tasting, this is the machine for you?

Pros:
  • Some models allow you to prepare two drinks at the same time.
  • Other models give you customisation options, so you can save preferences.
  • Can be used with a variety of coffee beans and even ground coffee in some cases.
  • A lot of models automate the process of coffee making.
  • Bean grinding on the spot for fresh coffee.
Cons:
  • May make noise when grinding.
  • Can be prone to clogging and not easy to clean.
  • Some models are very large, so kitchen space can be an issue.
  • More expensive than other types of coffee machines to buy.

High-end models come with a touch screen and extensive drink menus, whilst other models have automatic milk frothers. Some less expensive models substitute milk frothing for a steam wand.

The price range can vary widely. You’ll find that models can reach up to £2,000, but the more you pay doesn’t mean you get better coffee. We’ve found great bean-to-cup machines for way less than £400. There have also been some pricey products which give mediocre results, so it is always best to check online reviews before buying.

Brands to look out for when it comes to bean to cup coffee machines are Krups, Melitta, Jura and Dualit. DeLonghi and Sage also produce some excellent traditional-style options. They come with built-in grinders but still require the user to be present during the process of coffee making, just like a barista in a coffee shop.

Espresso Coffee Machines

If you’re looking for more control over your coffee and don’t have a problem with getting hands-on in the coffee-making process, then a amateur home barista espresso maker is what you will want to get.

They strike a good balance between the initial purchase price and the ongoing cost of coffee by the cup.

Pros:
  • Allows you to prepare two drinks at the same time.
  • Gives you more control over the size, strength and types of coffee you want to make.
  • Cheaper than pods (per cup).
  • Some models utilise ESE pods, reducing the mess during the making process.
  • Can use any ground coffee as long as it’s the right grind level (fine espresso).
Cons:
  • Requires more cleanup and manual prep than other types of coffee machines.
  • Might take some time to get used to it. It creates more risk of error.

Most models come with a steam wand, meaning that you have to froth the milk in a separate container. A lot of consumers go for models that have dials which allow you to control the size and the strength of the drink.

On the other hand, some companies like Sage (Breville in the US and Australia) focus on a more user-friendly design with the Touch series. Allowing you to have automatic milk frothing and preset settings.

DeLonghi offers the largest range, but you will also find excellent ground coffee machines from Sage and Krups. Other brands like Swan, Sainsbury’s, Beko, and Argos make some relatively cheap products which are worth considering.

Pod Coffee Machines

Machines like Dolce Gusto, Tassimo and Nespresso that use pods, are the most popular on the market. They can be good for anyone looking for an easy and quick way to make coffee at home.

Pros:
  • Provides a range of coffee styles and flavours for when you need it, on the go.
  • Works well for occasional coffee drinkers thanks to the seal on the pod that keeps coffee fresh.
  • Some models also let you make tea and hot chocolate.
  • Consistent, simple, and quick results. Also, not much cleanup is needed.
  • Not very expensive. Some models can be as cheap as £30.
  • Most models are small in size, so it won’t take up much space in your house.
Cons:
  • Generally, you’ll be restricted to use a certain capsule type only. This will limit your freedom of choice in drinking and buying. Some can only be purchased online.
  • Since they are plastic, coffee pods create waste. But there are some models that are more eco-friendly than others.
  • More costly than ground coffee or beans (per drink).
  • These machines are mass produced and cheap to buy, which is good till they break down or develop issues.  If you are having issues with yours, be sure to check out our Tassimo Instructions and Keurig Troubleshooting guides, which should get you up and running in no time!

The brand you choose will have an effect on the options available to you. Some might focus on a certain type of drink like espresso, while others will allow you to have a variety of different drinks like chocolate and caramel macchiatos.

Expensive models will give you more options. For example, some will allow you to save settings and preferences and adjust the temperature of the drink. Others can also be controlled via smartphones and also send you info about your capsule supply on your device.

Tassimo, Nespresso, Lavazza, Illy, and Dolce Gusto are the main coffee pod brands available on the market. You can head to our full Pod Coffee Machine guide to see how each of these brands compare, according to your taste, price range, and many other factors.

Pod or T-disc machines are really simple to use and do exactly what it says on the tin, i.e. you put a pod in, press the button and the machine makes your drink via the pod.  Very simple and quick to use.  Because of this, they are the ultimate no mess, no hassle drinks makers because everything they need, except water, is provided in each pod.  You simply choose the flavour you want from a wide selection of pods, stick it in and press the button.  Job done!

Tips For Choosing Bean To Cup Coffee Makers

It doesn’t matter whether it’s your first, second, or third because finding the best one can be a daunting task regardless of how many bean to cup espresso machines you have previously had.

Discover What’s Available

There are numerous brands of bean to cup espresso makers, with prices ranging from $20 to more than $2,000. These machines are divided into different categories, such as stovetop models, moka, electric-pump makers, steam machines, and everything in between. You can also find manual and automatic espresso coffee machines, which address different needs and demands. While a manual version permits you to control the entire brewing cycle, the automatic version can grind beans, make coffee, and even collect used grounds in a bin by itself.

Unfortunately, the wide variety of machines available can test your patience, knowledge, and discernment before you find one that matches your actual needs.

How to Choose

You should consider a models features which will help you work out why a specific machine is better than another. These features include:

  • Bean Grinder: To get a fresh, flavourful espresso, you need properly ground coffee. The best machines will always have an in-built grinder which delivers the right grind size for the type of coffee you are making.
  • Bypass Doser: This feature is only found on automatic bean to cup espresso machines. It allows you to bypass the regular dose provided by the machine when you want to use a different coffee, such as decaf.
  • Strength Controls: The best machines allow you to control the amount of water used in each shot and the strength of the coffee. By fine-tuning these controls, you can get your favorite espresso, cappuccino, or latte.
  • Water Filters: The latest models have integrated water filters that take out iron and chlorine from the tap water. Although this is a nice addition, it is not essential.
  • Pre-Moistening Cycle: This is another great feature that you should look for when considering what to buy. Although there are many different names for this technology, it basically enhances the coffee taste by moistening the ground coffee, stimulating aromatic oils before pulling the espresso shot.

Is It Worth It?

delonghi esam 4200A good espresso maker can be quite expensive. However, if you choose wisely, you’ll not only get a high performance machine, which allows you to have your favourite coffee at any time of the day, but also save money over the course of a year when you consider how much you spend at Starbucks and Costa Coffee.

Why buy your next coffee machine online?

When you buy a bean to cup coffee machine you want to get the most reliable machine which produces the best quality drinks and of course you want this at the lowest price!  These days it tends to be easier to buy online rather than taking the more traditional route of buying from a catalogue or in person on your local high street.  Buying online is faster, easier and you can access all the information you need to make an informed decision and buy the most suitable machine for your exact needs and requirements.

Coffee Machine FAQ

Q) Why are bean to cup coffee machines so expensive?

Coffee machines range in price from £20 to £2,000, so they do not always need to be expensive.  But if you are looking for a machine that can make coffee like you get at your local Costa or Starbucks, it is going to cost you quite a bit more, think £400+.  There are a few reasons for this:

  1. Cost of quality materials – A bean to cup coffee machine is built from quality components, and these are not cheap, they are made to last.
  2. Mass production – Because there is not a huge demand for premium coffee machines, they are manufactured in much smaller quantities, which in turn means that manufacturing is more expensive when compared to sub £100 coffee machines.  Thus they cost more to make.
  3. Branding and market placement – Companies work hard to brand themselves as producing quality, high end products.  Bean to cup coffee machines are at the top end of the market and manufacturers use their name (think Sage by Heston Blumenthal) to keep prices high and increase profit margins.
  4. Coffee taste – Does a £2000 expresso machine produce better tasting coffee than a £700 bean to cup coffee machine?  Yes if you know what you are doing, but a £700 machine definitely makes better coffee than a £100 coffee maker.  Why?  Because a £700 machine will allow you to control the temperature that the water is heated to, the pressure that the water is forced through the ground coffee and a lot more, so you can customise your coffee to get the best taste.  A £100 machine will not do this.

Q) What coffee should you use?

The answer to this question depends on the type of coffee maker you own.

  1. Bean to cup coffee machine – If you have a coffee maker which can grind coffee beans, you just need to add whichever coffee beans you prefer the taste of and let the machine grind and make your cup of coffee.
  2. Filter coffee machine – If you are using a filter coffee machine to make a pot of coffee, you should measure 1-2 tablespoons of ground coffee per cup of coffee that you want to make.  So if you are making a pot of coffee for 6 people, I would use 10 tablespoons of coffee.  But then I like my coffee quite strong.
  3. Pod or capsule coffee machines – You should not use ground coffee or coffee beans in a pod or capsule coffee maker, you should only use the coffee pods or capsules designed for your machine.

Q) How much is a coffee machine?

This depends on the type of coffee machine you want to buy, but the following is a good guide.

  1. Espresso machines – Espresso machines cost from £50 – £6,000, but you can buy a decent machine for as little as £150 and a very good one for £2,000.
  2. Bean to cup makers – Bean to cup coffee makers cost from £300 – £1,500, but a good machine that will last for years costs around £700.
  3. Filter coffee makers – Filter coffee makers are cheap and cost between £20 – £650, but you can buy a very good one for £50.
  4. Pod coffee machines – Pod or capsule coffee machines are mass produced and cost from £20 – £350, however a Tassimo machine costing £20 is just as good as one which costs £150, as they use the same pods.

Q) How many calories does a black coffee have?

A regular cup of coffee made from ground coffee beans contains only 2 calories, and a single shot (or 1 fluid ounce) of espresso contains only 1 calorie.

Q) How to use a coffee machine?

If you have not used a semi-automatic espresso machine, or a drip coffee maker, it can seem a little daunting with all their buttons and parts.  However, once you work out how it works and what to press, you can make coffee, just how you like it, very quickly and with very little effort.  Follow the instructions below for drip coffee makers and espresso machines.

Filter (drip) coffee makers

  1. The first step is to fill the tank or reservoir with water.  Make sure you only fill the tank to the max line, and you should use cold water only, as the coffee maker will heat the water for you.
  2. Next you need to add ground coffee to the filter basket.  Take the filter basket out of the drip coffee maker and add 1-2 tablespoons of fresh coffee grounds for every cup of coffee you want to make.  So if you are making filter coffee for 6 people, you would want to add 10 tablespoons of ground coffee to the filter basket.
  3. All you now need to do is put the filter basket back in to the coffee machine, ensure that the coffee pot (or carafe) is sitting in the right position and turn the machine on.  The carafe (or coffee pot) usually sits on a warming plate directly below the filter.  It takes around 5 or so minutes to complete the brewing cycle.

Semi automatic espresso machines

  1. The first step is to fill the tank or reservoir with water. You will find the water tank either on the side or back of the machine, and be sure to use cold water, as the espresso machine will heat the water as part of the brewing cycle.
  2. Wait for the espresso machine to heat up.  If you have just added cold water to the machine or have not had it turned on a ready, you will need to allow it time to heat up to the correct brewing temperature before you can make a cup of coffee.  This can take anywhere from 15 to 45 mins, depending on the espresso machine you have, but typically it takes around 20 minutes.
  3. Grind the beans whilst you are waiting.  Your espresso machine requires ground coffee so now you need to grind your coffee beans using a coffee grinder.  A burr grinder is preferred vs a blade grinder as it ensures your coffee is ground to the same size, which improves the taste of your coffee.
  4. Add the ground coffee to the portafilter.  You now need to add between 18-21 grams of coffee grounds to the portafilter.  Level off the coffee when it is filled with a knife or your finger (if you must) and tamp it down using a tamper, so the ground coffee is compact.
  5. Replace the portafilter and brew your coffee.  Ensure the portafilter is locked back into position in your espresso machine and when the water temperature is at the correct brewing temperature simply press the brew button.
  6. Steam your milk (optional).  If you are not making espresso or americano, you will now want to steam your milk to add to your coffee.  Once you have turned on the steamer, you need to hold the tip of the steam wand under the surface of the milk in your milk jug for a few seconds, before pushing it down to the bottom of the jug and allowing it to heat the milk to roughly 60°C.
  7. Add your steamed milk to your espresso (optional).  Simply pour your steam milk into your espresso and your cappuccino or latte is good to go.

Q) How to make instant coffee?

If you do not have a coffee maker to hand, instant coffee is a great alternative.  You cannot make instant coffee granules at home as they are made from dehydrated brewed coffee, so you will need to buy your preferred instant coffee from a local shop or online.  But once you have it, you are good to go.

  1. Heat your water.  You can either do this using an electric kettle, stove top kettle, saucepan on your cooker, or in the microwave.  Using a kettle is the simplest method and makes it easy to poor into your coffee cup/mug.
  2. Add the instant coffee to your cup or mug.  How much instant coffee you add to your cup depends on how strong you like your coffee to taste.  Most people add a headed teaspoon but some prefer very strong coffee and will add 2 teaspoons.
  3. Cold water tip.  A lot of people will add the hot water straight into the cup at this point, but that will burn the coffee and make it taste bitter.  Add a little cold water to the cup first so the instant coffee granules dissolve and preserve their flavour.
  4. Add the hot water.  Now add the hot water and mix with a teaspoon in the cup.
  5. Add sugar to taste (optional).  If you find instant coffee a little bitter, you may want to add some sugar or an artificial sweetener.  Make sure you stir the sugar or sweetener into your coffee.
  6. Add milk/cream to taste (optional).  If you do not like black coffee (americano), add some milk or cream to taste.

Q) How to use ground coffee?  How to make coffee without a coffee maker?

If your filter coffee or espresso machine has broken, don’t panic, you can still make a cup of coffee to get you going in the morning, follow the below easy steps and you will be caffeinated in no time!

  1. Add water to a saucepan.  Place a saucepan on your stove top or cooker and add a bit more water to the pan than coffee you wan to make.  You need to use more water as the water will evaporate as you heat it, so you need a bit more.
  2. Add the ground coffee to the pan.  Now add the coffee grounds to the pan and stir them in.  Depending how many cups of coffee you want to make, determines how much ground coffee to add, but a good ratio to use is 1-2 tablespoons of ground coffee for a single cup (1 being normal strength and 2 for strong coffee).
  3. Bring the saucepan to the boil.  Turn on the heat and bring the coffee in the pan to boiling point, stirring every now and again to ensure you do not burn the coffee grounds on the bottom of the pan.
  4. Boil for 2 minutes.  Once your pan is boiling, allow it to boil for 2 minutes.
  5. Allow it to rest.  Turn the heat off on your stove or cooker and let the pan rest for 4 minutes so the coffee grounds sink to the bottom.
  6. Serve your coffee.  Using a ladle or spoon, you now need to scoop the coffee (water) from the pan into your mug.  Alternatively, you can poor the coffee (water) from the pan straight into your mug, but do this slowly so you don’t get any of the coffee grinds.

Q) What coffee machine does greggs use?

Greggs bakery use the Black&White3 bean to cup coffee machine in every one of their 1,650 shops across the UK.  This bean to cup coffee maker has a touch screen allowing you to select your preferred coffee type, and a bean grinder to ensure you always get fresh coffee.  If you want to get one for home, you can actually pick one up on Ebay for a reasonable price.

Q) How much caffeine is in a Greggs cappuccino?

A Greggs cappuccino contains 90 calories per 274 gram serving.

Q) Which coffee machine does costa coffee use?

Costa Coffee use Astoria espresso machines in every one of their 2,100 shops across the UK.  These commercial espresso machines are workhorses and capable of making coffee just how you and your customers like it all day long. If you want to get one for home or your coffee shop, you can actually pick one up on Ebay for £500.

Q) What coffee brand does McDonald’s use?

If you love the coffee you get at McDonalds and would like to drink it at home also, you can now pick up bags of the ground coffee from Amazon.  Not only do they have the normal McCafe Premium Roast Ground Coffee but they also sell the decaffeinated McDonald’s McCafe coffee too.