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Best Coffee Makers Consumer Reports

Updated on April 6, 2016

Best Rated and Best Value Coffee Makers

I've sifted through many customer reviews and consumer reports to find the best coffee makers. There is a bewildering choice of coffee makers. I used some simple criteria to narrow down the field. Obviously I was looking for great taste but I also wanted elegant design, ease of use and best value for money. There were many consumer reports and reviews to research but using these criteria helped to cut through thousands of words and make my decision. In this article, I'll share my selections also how I made my choices.

I also looked at the following categories; best coffee makers under $50, under $100 and under $500 (above this price level, I think you're really talking about a professional coffee maker rather than a coffee maker for the home).

Best Coffee Maker Under $50 - Aerobie AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker

i love this coffee maker because it's very simple to use and clean. Even more importantly, you can easily control the key variables that determine how your coffee turns out (the amount of coffee, the coarseness of the coffee, the temperature of water and the brewing time). Obviously for best results you should use good quality, freshly roasted coffee.

AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker with Tote Bag and 350 Additional Filters - Quickly Makes Delicious Coffee without Bitterness - 1 to 3 Cups Per Press
AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker with Tote Bag and 350 Additional Filters - Quickly Makes Delicious Coffee without Bitterness - 1 to 3 Cups Per Press

My brother recommended this brilliantly simple coffee maker. It's one of the most popular and highly rated coffee makers available. The vast majority of the many reviews are highly favorable. A typical comment is; "Why buy a coffee maker and spend a lot of money when you can buy the aeropress and make better coffee?"


How to Use the Aerobie Aeropress Coffee Maker

Different Types of Coffee Maker

Before you can decide which coffee maker to buy, you first have to decide which type of coffee maker you need.

French Press

The Aerobie Aeropress shown above is a variation on the French Press. It's a simple system that just requires ground coffee and hot water (although, just to confuse, the Aeropress does use paper filters- check out the video above to see it in action). Conventional French Presses have built in mesh filters, so you add hot water onto your ground coffee and press the filter down to remove the grounds from the coffee.

Drip Coffeemaker (Electric)

This type of coffee maker filters hot water through a paper filter and ground coffee which drips through to a heated pot. It can make a large pot of coffee which can be used over a period of time. Some models have built in coffee grinders and timers for even more convenience.

Stove Top Coffeemakers

Sometimes referred to as "Italian-style" these coffee makers sit on top of a hot stove. There's a bottom container which you fill with water and coffee or espresso. You then screw on the top container and put the whole thing on your hot stove. The hot water becomes pressurized and passes through the coffee into the top container from where your coffee is poured.

Single Cup Home Brewing System Vacuum Coffeemaker

This is similar to the Italian style stove top coffeemaker. The difference is that it's made from glass. In addition when it's taken away from the heat the coffee is filtered back down into the pouring pot at the bottom. Because it's made from microwave-safe materials, its easy to reheat your coffee.

Other Types of Coffeemaker

The vast majority of commercially available coffee makers fall into one the above categories but there are also simple low-tech coffee makers such as porcelain coffee cones and Turkish coffeepots.

Best Coffee Maker Under $100 - Hamilton Beach Two Way Brewer Single Serve and 12-cup Coffee Maker

I chose this coffee maker because of its versatility and value for money. You can use it to make a single cup of coffee (or even tea) or a full 12-cup pot. It's also programable so you can wake up to freshly brewed coffee.

Hamilton Beach 49980Z 2-Way Brewer, 12-Cup
Hamilton Beach 49980Z 2-Way Brewer, 12-Cup

This is one of the best selling and highly rated electronic drip coffee makers. The vast majority of reviews are highly favorable and you get a lot of features and versatility for your money.


Best Coffee Maker Under $500 - Technivorm Moccamaster KB-741

If you're serious about coffee many people rate this as the best automatic electronic drip coffee maker. Water temperature is precisely controlled to the range 198 to 205 degrees fahrenheit which is perfect for coffee brewing.

Technivorm Moccamaster 59616 KBG Coffee Brewer, 40 oz, Polished Silver
Technivorm Moccamaster 59616 KBG Coffee Brewer, 40 oz, Polished Silver

Just the stand alone model included because I'm not sure for how long the above bundle will be available.


How to Make The Perfect Cup of Coffee

It's a matter of personal taste.

The key is to use the best ingredients. This means freshly roasted good quality coffee beans. Then there are four key variables to control and vary according to personal taste.

1. Coarseness. Coffee connoisseurs tend to use manually operated coffee grinders. The degree of grinding will depend on your coffee maker specification and your personal taste.

2. The amount of coffee used. This will vary with the type of coffee bean, the brewing method and your personal preference.

3. Temperature. Most people agree that the perfect water temperature for coffee brewing is just below boiling, somewhere in the range 195 to 205 degrees fahrenheit. Obviously you want your coffee to be hot, but if the water is too hot the coffee will taste harsh and bitter.

4. Time to brew. This is a matter of personal taste, experienced real coffee drinkers tend to prefer a stronger taste.

How Do You Make a Great Cup of Coffee? - Some people seem to have the knack of making great coffee

What's the secret to a great cup of coffee?

See results

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    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 

      3 years ago from Oklahoma

      Wonderful product review.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Thank you for sharing this information and these tips. Very thorough and so well done!


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