Mmmmm, coffee <3 If you’re like me, it doesn’t matter what time of the day it is, you always have a coffee in hand. Doesn’t matter what kind either – coffee straight from the coffee pot, iced coffee, espresso, you name it! One of my favorites is espresso though. You can’t beat the flavor of a good, rich espresso. What I love about it is that when you have good quality espresso, you can drink it straight or you can make a number of drinks with it. And again, you can’t beat that flavor!

So, I want to look at the best of espresso machines in 2020. As a mom, you probably know about the long, sleepless nights. Some of us, need coffee just to make it through the day. Others of us, just can’t get enough of that wonderful taste. Whatever your reason may be, I’m glad your here. I’m hoping I can point you to find the best espresso machine to fill your house with that wonderful aroma. Is there really any better smell anyway? Plus, with being a mom, there are days you just can’t leave the house. Unless you want to pack up what seems like a circus and head to the coffee shop. So having your own espresso machine will save you money and time 🙂

There are so many espresso machines on the market. And so many different price points. I want to cover it all here. I’ll list some espresso machines that are on the more affordable side of the price point scale, some that have a much higher price point (top-notch stuff) and then some that lay in-between. Obviously, you know that with the higher price point machines, you are getting what you pay for. The espresso is probably going to turn out a little better and the machine is going to have more bells and whistles. But, with the lower price point machines, you will still be getting high quality espresso.

I’ll break this down into a couple sections to hopefully make this a little easier. We’ll do the best of espresso machines for under $100, the best of espresso machines between $100 and $500 and then the best of espresso machines for $500+. Hopefully you can find one that fits your needs and your price point 🙂

Best of Espresso Machines for Under $100

SOWTECH Espresso Maker with Steam Milk Frother & Carafe

I’m going to start this out with a very affordable, easy to use espresso machine. This one also comes with a milk frother, which is really nice if you plan on making specialty coffee drinks like lattes, mochas or cappuccinos. What I love about this one is that it is easy to use, compact and affordable. So, easy to use means that you can control this whole machine with one dial. This one dial will allow you to stop or pause your process but also steam your milk and make your espresso. The compact design is nice because it will save your precious counter space.

If you mommas are like me, the counter space in your kitchen is very limited. And to be honest, who really wants another device sitting on their counter? That’s what I really like about this, you can still have your espresso machine without loosing your counter space 🙂 And one of the best parts, you can get this for under $100. If you are getting your espresso/coffee from a coffee shop you know how that can add up. So really, you can pay for this machine pretty quickly if you save that money you are spending at a coffee shop.

Here are the other features you will love about this espresso machine:

  • stainless steel
  • smaller design (compact)
  • light
  • removable, washable drip catcher (it will collect coffee drips)
  • frothing arm
  • indicator light (for easy operation)
  • single known operation system
  • accurate temperature control
  • 3.5 bar pressure
  • 1-4 cups option
  • easy pour glass cup/carafte
  • comes with:
    • detachable filter
    • funnel
    • carafe
    • drip catcher
    • spoon
    • removable frothing nozzle & steam tube

This machine truly is simple and straightforward. So this is a great option if you want espresso but don’t want anything fancy. You just want your espresso without going out. You can get your espresso with this in about 2-3 minutes total – with an extraction time of 22 seconds…you will be smelling your espresso in no time! 🙂

Mr. Coffee Cafe Steam Automatic Espresso & Cappuccino Machine

This one is very similar to the SOWTECH that I mentioned previously in that it is very simple & straightforward to use. Mr. Coffee is probably a brand that you are more familiar with. If you have a traditional coffee maker, there’s a good chance that it might be a Mr. Coffee brand. With this one, you can make your espresso easily and froth your milk for lattes & cappuccinos too. You can choose a single or double shot of espresso with this one, since it comes with a 1-ounce and 2-ounce basket. This one is also very similar in size to the SOWTECH espresso machine but will be a couple pounds heavier (around 7 pounds total). So it is still a very lightweight, compact espresso machine.

Here are some other features of the Mr. Coffee espresso machine that you’ll love:

  • 15-bar pressure pump system
  • thermal block heating system (will heat your water quick & evenly)
  • 40 ounce removable water reservoir
  • easy-to-use milk frother
  • single or double shot option
  • removable, washable drip catcher
  • frothing pitcher
  • measuring cup
  • mesuring scoop included (will also work as a tamper)
  • removable base (will make for easy cleaning!)

Again, this one is really easy to use. So if you are looking for a simple, affordable espresso machine, this is another good option.

Simpresso Portable Espresso Maker

This is a little different option when it comes to espresso “machines”. This is an awesome option if you don’t want an espresso machine sitting on your counter or if you want to be able to travel with your espresso machine. So with this one, you don’t need to plug it in & it won’t take up counter space. But, it of course works a little differently than a traditional espresso machine. There are so many things that I love about this one. First, I love how easy it is to use. Even though it isn’t like a regular espresso machine, it is super simple to figure out.

Second, I love that you can either use loose espresso or pods with this. Pods would be easier to use if you plan on traveling with this, since you can just pop a pod in and make your espresso, you wouldn’t have to worry about bringing your espresso grounds. Either way though, it works the same way and is easy no matter which method you decide to use! So you can use Nespresso original capsules (the pods) with this or use the reusable capsules.

How this works, is you simply put your espresso pod, or reusable capsule into the device, screw on the bottom portion and use the mechanical operated pistol which is what creates the pressure to brew your espresso. Obviously this requires more “manual” work than a regular espresso machine but still very easy to do.

Here are the other features you will get with the Simpresso Espresso Maker:

  • 100% BPA Free
  • 15-19 bars pressure
  • double-wall heat insulated
  • reusable smart capsule (so you can use your own ground coffee)
  • flexible water tank (so you can make a wide range of espresso sizes)
  • easy to use
  • easy to clean
  • 1 year warranty
  • what it comes with:
    • 1 Simpresso unit
    • 1 detachable transparent cup
    • 4 set smart capsules
    • 1 Nespresso adapter kit (capsule filter & basket to use Nespresso Pods)
    • 1 waterproof travel bag
    • 1 scoop
    • 1 instruction book

Again, this is a great option if you are looking for an affordable, simple, compact & portable espresso machine. This one weight less than 2 pounds! So it will be easy to take with you no matter where you want to go; whether it’s at home, camping or to your office.

If you are on the fence about this one, just think about what you want out of your espresso machine. This will give you high quality, great tasting espresso but you will need to do a little more work to get it, you can’t just press a button. And, there will be more parts to wash. However, you won’t have a machine sitting on your counter, you can take this one anywhere & you don’t need to worry as much about something going wrong with it (since it is so simple there is less that can go wrong).

De’Longhi Pump Espresso & Cappuccino Maker

This one has a slightly higher price point than the others but works very similarly. This one has a milk frother as well, so you can make your specialty coffee drinks using your espresso! It is very similar in size (about 12x19x15 inches) and weight (less than 7 pounds). This one is another good option if you are trying to save counter space but still want a high quality espresso machine. I love that with this one you can use pods or ground coffee. For me, I love having that option.

Here are the other features you’ll get with the De’Longhi:

  • 15 bar pressure (but also has adjustable controls so you can modify it to your taste preference)
  • three-in-one filter holder
  • one espresso shot option or two
  • easy serve espresso pod option
  • swivel jet frother
  • no waiting between cups (the machine maintains the temp so you can brew one cup after another)
  • removable water tank
  • easy to clean
  • drip tray (to catch the coffee drips)
  • dishwasher safe

This one differs a little bit from the others because it has a dual espresso options, meaning you have two espresso cups. The others will just brew two shots in one cup. This is a very minor detail but if you want to keep your espresso shots separate (for if you are making two separate drinks) this is a really good option.

Best of Espresso Machines between $100 & $500

Nespresso by De’Longhi Coffee & Espresso Machine Bundle

I would still consider this a very affordable option when it comes to espresso machines. You’ll notice throughout this that Nespresso keeps coming up. This is a very well-known and trusted brand. And they are known for the quality and flavor of their espresso. For Nespresso, they have two lines of machines. They have their original design (which is the older of the two) and their newer line which is called Vertuo. So if you are looking at Nespresso machines and you see those that start with “Vertuo”, that is the newer line of machines.

I love pretty much everything about this machine. The design and look of it to how simple it is to use. This machine will be a little bigger than those we have been talking about (it’s about 20×11.5×16) and will also be a little heavier (around 13 pounds) but you are also getting more “luxury” features with this machine as well. One of those being the automatic blend recognition that these VertuoLine machines use. What this is an intelligent extraction system that recognizes each blend (pod) that you put in the machine. You’ll notice that there is a bar code on the pods/capsule & the machine will adjust the brewing parameters based on this. So you won’t need to adjust anything on the machine, it knows what to do automatically to create the best tasting espresso for each capsule.

One other awesome feature I want to point out is the one touch brewing. All you do is press a button. It only takes 15-20 seconds to heat up and the capsule will automatically be ejected when it is done brewing.

Let’s look at the other features you’ll love with this machine:

  • removable water tank
  • fast heat up (15 seconds!)
  • automatic shutoff (9 minutes of inactivity)
  • includes welcome kit of unique aroma Vertuo capsules
  • milk frother
  • 5 cup size option
    • alto cup (14 oz)
    • coffee (8 oz)
    • gran lungo (5 oz)
    • double espresso (2.7 oz)
    • espresso (1.35 oz)
  • centrifusion extraction technology (aka, blends your ground coffee perfectly with water by spinning the capsule up to 7,000 times a minute)
  • one touch brewing system
  • adjustable cup size (can adjust the cup support for up to three positions)

I also love that this comes with a welcome kit. So you will be getting 12 Nespresso Vertuo capsules that you can try. It really is like Christmas when you get this espresso machine. One thing to note about this one though, is that it comes with a milk frother; it is not attached to the machine. They also have this machine that does not come with the milk frother, so that one will, of course, be cheaper.

Nespresso by De’Longhi Esenza Mini Espresso Machine

Again, another Nespresso machine but this one has a lower price point than the last one, is a little smaller and built a little differently. I wanted to include this one because, again, Nespresso is high quality, well-known brand but this machine is closer to $100 – so it has a more affordable price point.

What I like about this one is that its smaller, lighter and easy to use but still delivers that high quality espresso. This size of this one will be much smaller (about 4x13x8 inches) and only weighs about 5 pounds. So this is a great option if you want a simple, small espresso machine. This is the most compact machine that Nespresso has. This smaller machine still gives you the option to brew two different cup sizes though.

Some other features that you’ll be getting with the Nespresso Mini are:

  • 2 programmable cup sizes (espresso & lungo)
  • one touch system
  • intuitive
  • easy to use
  • high pressure (19 bar pump)
  • fast heat-up (reaches ideal temp in under 30 seconds)
  • energy saving (includes an eco-mode)
  • includes wecome gift

The eco-mode included with this machine allows for low energy consumption after 3 minutes and will automatically shut off after 9 minutes. Which is really nice, especially for moms with “mom brain” and forget to turn things off….guilty! 🙂 As I mentioned with the last one, this espresso machine also comes with a welcome gift that includes a range of Nespresso capsules.

Nescafe Dolce Gusto Espresso Machine

This is another affordable option, around $100. This espresso machine is kinda cool, it’s a little more unique than the others.

Here are the features you will be getting with the Nescafe:

  • 15 bars of pressure
  • create hot & cold beverages
  • can make black coffee, espresso, lattes, cappuccinos & more
  • easy to use
  • wheel interface on the 7 level LED display screen
  • control size of your coffee
  • control intensity of your coffee
  • auto shut off after 5 minutes

Just note that with this machine, you can only use the Dolce Gusto Capsules, so you can’t mix and match espressos with this machine. So the downside of this would be you can only use those pods but, they are affordable. You can get 48 capsules for about $24. What I do like about this machine though is that it is easy to use and affordable. I also like that you can control both the size and intensity of your coffee. The capsules can help you with this, you just adjust the scroll-wheel to change the number of green bars on the screen to match what is on the capsule. But, you can change it to your liking too.

It’s also cool that this machine has so many flavor varieties. You’ll have to buy these separate (like I said, they are very reasonably price). But, you can make the following:

  • Americanos
  • Cafe Au Lait
  • Caramel Latte Macchiato
  • Chai Tea Latte
  • Chococino
  • Dark Roast
  • Espresso Intenso
  • Grande Intenso
  • Latte Macchiato
  • Lungo Decaf
  • Medium Roast
  • Mocha
  • Skinny Cappuccino
  • Vanilla Latte Macchiato

So I really do like that you have so many options with this one. Even though with this machine you have to use these pods, you should be able to find at least one you like because they have such a wide variety.

Calphalon Temp iQ Espresso Machine

This one has a slightly higher price point than the others we have talked about but I love this one. I really like the design and look of it as well. That might sound weird, but this on has a really elegant design in my opinion. I think it would actually look pretty sitting in a kitchen 🙂

Calphalon is probably a brand that you aren’t very familiar with…but don’t let that scare you away from this one. This Temp iQ espresso machine has awesome reviews and some great features. It has many of the same features and works similarly as the other ones. It has a steaming wand and a dial where you control the machine.

What this espresso machine is known for is right in the name of it – iQ temp. This is precision heating technology that is going to evenly heat your espresso so it has an AWESOME taste. And yes, temp really does matter when you are brewing espresso. This can drastically change the taste of your espresso/drink. I’ll mention this in the features below but it also has an enlarged portafiler. What I love about this is that it allows the coffee grounds to be evenly wet which then allows your espresso to have maximum flavor!

One other unique feature I love about this is the cup warming tray. This may seem insignificant but it is really nice to have a warm cup to dispense your espresso into since one, you want your espresso to stay warm and two, if your espresso cools or sits too long it can change the flavor of it. So this is actually a really nice feature.

Here are some of the other features that you are going to love with the Temp iQ espresso machine:
  • enlarged portafilter
  • auto-shot control – automatically dispenses the right about of water
  • one or two shot espresso options
  • cup warming tray
  • comes with
    • stainless steel milk pitcher
    • tamper
    • dual wall 1 & 2 cup filters
    • cleaning pin

This one is similar to the De’Longhi one that I talked about in the previous section (those below $100) in that it can brew two separate shots of espresso at once. Again, this is nice for if you are making different drinks and you don’t want your shots of espresso combined.

Mr. Coffee Espresso & Cappuccino Maker

I mentioned a Mr. Coffee espresso maker in the last section (under $100) but this is kind of the next step up. So if you like the Mr. Coffee brand but are looking for an espresso machine with a few more “bells and whistles” this is a good one. This one is still simple to use like the other Mr. Coffee one I mentioned. One of the advantages that comes with this one though, is the automatic milk frother. So if you aren’t very comfortable or familiar with frothing your own milk, this is a good machine since it will do it for you. No more guesswork when it comes to milk frothing 🙂

Here are some other features that you will love about this Mr. Coffee espresso machine:

  • 15-bar pressure
  • one touch control for single or double shot option
  • automatically froths milk
  • removable milk reservoir (so you can still save the milk that you don’t use)
  • easy to use
  • removable water reservoir – easy to fill and easy to clean!

Like I said, this one is easy to use. Just pick if you want a single or double shot, fill the filter, select your grounds, fill the milk tank (if you are making a coffee with frothed milk) and choose your brew! That’s it! I also like that you can pick from three different color machines with this one. Most of them just come in a silver/stainless steel option but you have a few more to pick from with this!

Nespresso by De’Longhi Lattissima Plus Espresso

Yes, another Nespresso option. You’ll start to notice that this is a well-known and trusted brand 😉 This one is, of course, a little different from the other Nespresso options. A bonus with this one is that it comes in two different colors. This Nespresso machine is similar to the Mr. Coffee one I just talked about in the fact that it will froth your milk for you. So if you plan on making a lot of specialty drinks (cappuccino, lattes, etc.) then this would be a good option since you don’t even need to froth your own milk!

This Nespresso is also easy to use and convenient. Easy to use in the fact that you can make high quality drinks, (Cappuccino, Lattes, Latte Macchiatos) in a way that it intuitive and totally automated – just by touching a button. You can also personalize and program quantities of milk/froth and coffee! Plus, this one has a removable milk container so that you can easily store the milk you don’t use!

Here are some other features of the Nespresso Lattissima that you’ll love:

  • 19 bar pump
  • fast heat-up (reaches ideal temp in just 40 seconds)
  • automatic shut off (after 9 minutes of inactivity)
  • complimentary welcome gift
  • sliding drip tray
  • 30 oz water tank capacity
  • rinsing function
  • 3 programmed milk options
  • 2 programmed coffee options

Same with the other Nespresso machines, this welcome kit comes with a variety of the Nespresso capsules. I like this because you get to try the different ones available to find which one you like best. I also like that they have such a wide variety of aromatic profiles/flavors.

Best of Espresso Machines for $500+

Philips 2200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine

If you are willing to spend a little more money on your espresso machine, this is an awesome option! Less than $600, you are getting some pretty cool features with this one. Philips is another brand you probably didn’t think of when it comes to espresso machines but hopefully I can change your mind. What I love about this one, is it is more of an “all-in-one” espresso machine. What I mean is that it will grind your beans, make the espresso and you can froth your milk. It gets better though, the grinder won’t just grind your coffee beans…but you can adjust it. It is a 12 step grinder, which means that you can grind anywhere from ultra- fine powder to coarse grounds!

The touch display is one other feature I want to mention. It pretty much sells itself right there, but with this it is an intuitive touch display where you can control your coffee. This means you can adjust the strength and quantity of your drink.

Other than that, here are some other features that you’ll love:

  • classic milk frother
  • intuitive touch display
  • 12-step grinder adjustment
  • 100% ceramic grinders
  • AquaClean filter
  • removable brew group
  • single or double shot/brew options
  • up to 5,000 cups without descaling
  • automatic descaling
  • dishwasher safe parts
  • 3 different temperature settings
  • 3 different aroma strength settings

I also like that this one has a filter. The quality of your water is probably something you don’t think about when it comes to making coffee or espresso. But, it can make a huge difference on how your drink tastes! This espresso machine will tell you when you need to change the filter!

De’Longhi Dinamica Automatic Coffee & Espresso Machine

This is another great option from De’Longhi! One feature that I love about this one is that you can make iced coffee with it. The true brew process will deliver smooth, full-bodied iced coffee. How this works is that the machine will brew at a lower temperature, pre-infuse the coffee and brew extra strong (you can also change this if you didn’t want it that strong) so that you have full-bodied coffee over ice that is never watered down. That is the key – never watered down!

So this machine would be awesome if you like to make your own iced coffee! You can do that with the other machines (by just using the espresso) but this machine actually has a brew over ice feature.

This espresso machine also has a built in coffee grinder, so you’ll be getting the freshest espresso. It is an adjustable steel burr grinder that comes with a recommended grind setting but you also have the option to customize this according to your coffee roast, origin and your own personal taste preferences.

The other features you will be getting with this machine are:

  • quick heat-up setting (less than 40 seconds)
  • 15-bar high performance pump
  • coffee shop quality coffee with the push of a button
  • bean to cup brewing (built-in coffee grinder with 13 settings) * does not leave coffee grounds in the brewing unit
  • removable brew unit
  • dishwasher safe drip tray
  • premium adjustable frother
  • one-touch customized drinks
  • 3 year warrany

The one-touch customized drinks allows you to adjust the size and strength. It has 5 strength settings that range from extra milk to extra strong. You can also adjust the drink length based on your preferences or to be able to fit in your coffee cup!

Overall, this is an awesome option for an espresso machine. But, if you are looking for one with many features – including an iced coffee setting, this one is perfect. You can grind your coffee, brew it for a traditional espresso or an iced coffee and froth your milk.

Breville the Barista Expresso Espresso Machine

This might be one of the highest rated espresso machines. Similar to the last two I talked about in that you can grind your coffee, brew your espresso and froth you milk but it has a different style to it.

With this espresso machine, it starts with low pressure pre-infusino that will soak your coffee grinds. This allows water to pass evenly through the coffee during the brewing process. You’ll notice that the result is a creamy and caramel colored espresso.

Here are the features that you will love with the Breville espresso machine:

  • dose-control grinding
  • grind size dial – can control over the grind size no matter what type of bean
  • precise espresso extraction
  • digital temperature control
  • micro-foam milk texturing
  • 15-bar pump
  • single or double shot espresso option
  • adjustable grind amount
  • what is included:
    • razor dose trimming tool
    • stainless steel port filter
    • 1 cup dual wall filter basket
    • 2 cup dual wall filter basket
    • coffee scoop
    • integrated tamper
    • stainless steel milk jug
    • cleaning disc and tablets
    • cleaning brush
    • water filter holder
    • water filter

What is nice about this grinder is that it will grind your beans on-demand and will deliver the right amount of the freshly ground coffee right into the portafilter. One less step for you!

This one might not be as intuitive or easy to use as the others. But its really not that complicated. Plus, you will be getting some of the highest quality espresso. If you want a one touch system this probably isn’t the machine for you.

De’Longhi Compact Automatic Espresso Machine

I mentioned the De’Longhi Dinamica above, but this one I would say is another “step up”. It has a few more bells and whistles! Similar in some ways though, including the burr grinder and milk frother. This machine has 4 one-touch recipes built in; single espresso, double espresso, single espresso long and double espresso long. It also has 5 drink options built in; espresso, cappuccino, latte, hot water and americano.

I like that this one also allows you to grind your own beans or use pre-ground. That way, if your favorite coffee doesn’t come in bean form, you can always use the pre-ground. So there is one chamber that will allow you to put your coffee beans, with a grinder that has 13 adjustable grind settings. The second chamber is where you can put your pre-ground coffee.

Other features that you’ll love with this De’Longhi Espresso machine are:

  • height adjustable coffee spout
  • adjustable temperature
  • adjustable coffee strength
  • adjustable cup size
  • 13 adjustable grind settings/built in grinder
  • chamber for pre-ground coffee
  • automatic brew temp (but again, you can adjust it)
  • easy to clean
  • easy to handle
  • 60 second heat-up time
  • removable water reservoir
  • removable waste bin
  • removable drip tray

I just love that you can program your preferences into this machine. So if you are someone who loves coffee and plans on using this every day, this would be nice that you can just program your favorite drink in and have the machine do the rest!

It is also nice that you don’t have to wait to brew another cup. This machine will maintain the perfect temperature so you won’t have to wait to brew another cup!

Breville Oracle Espresso Machine

I may have saved the best for last with this one. Yes, it is more expensive than the rest of them I have mentioned, but wait until you hear the features you are getting with this one.

I’ve mentioned a couple Breville espresso machines in this post, but this is pretty much the top of the line. There is technically one more that is a step ahead of this, called the Oracle Touch but this one seems to have better reviews. One difference is that the Oracle Touch as a touch screen that you navigate. You can find this one on the same page as the Oracle (just click the picture and scroll down a little bit).

But, back to the Oracle. What I absolutely love about this is how this machine really does everything for you. This one says “We put the barista inside, so you don’t have to be one”. This is my kind of espresso machine. I LOVE my espresso, but I’m no barista! So what does this really mean? It means that this machine has automatic grinding, closing, tamping and milk texturing. You can also extract your espresso and texture your milk at the same time. All of this happens in under one minute – this means you can go from your beans to your espresso in UNDER ONE MINUTE! The freshest, high quality espresso you want in less time 🙂

The other features of the Oracle that you’ll love:

  • auto grinder & dose (will grind your coffee and automatically dose into the tamper)
  • auto tamp
  • micro-foam milk texturing
  • self-cleaning steam wand
  • adjustable milk temp
  • adjustable milk texture
  • flexible shot control (one shot, two shots, or manual control over espresso shot)
  • one touch americano
  • dual stainless steel broilers
  • dual Italian pumps

So overall, this is an awesome espresso machine. Like I said before, this one has a higher price point but you are getting some awesome features. You can get high quality barista style coffee without doing much of anything, the machine does it all for you! So especially if you are a mom and don’t have time to be spending on making your coffee, this is a good option 🙂

Obviously, there are so many other espresso machines out there. I found these to be the best of the best without spending too much money. Of course there are really fancy options out there that are AWESOME but you’ll have to pay $3,000+ for them. If you want, I can walk through those in another post, leave a comment below if you want me to!

Otherwise, leave a comment below and let me know how you like to drink your espresso and if you already have a favorite espresso machine!

All the best,

Abby

abby@mommaberasknowbest.com

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