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Best inexpensive coffee makers: quality coffee at low prices

The best inexpensive coffee makers can save you hundreds of dollars and they'll still brew a delicious cup of joe. These are the best coffee makers under $150.

Best coffee maker under $100: A coffee maker on a kitchen countertop pouring an espresso
(Image credit: GettyImages)

There's no linear correlation between the cost of your coffee maker and the quality of the coffee that it will produce. The best inexpensive coffee makers can brew an exceptional espresso or an impressive Americano, saving you hundreds of dollars at the same time.

As a barista, I was trained on the best espresso machines. However, if you had one of these in your home, it would cost you thousands of pounds. You'd also have to give up a considerable amount of countertop space and you're peace and quiet. There are plenty of options that can deliver a top-quality brew without costing you thousands of dollars and countertop space.

I've kept this list to coffee makers which are under $200. If they're over $100, I've included them because they're still exceptional value, but most are less than that. Whether it's a French press, pour over, or low-cost pod machine, I've brewed some great cups of coffee from machines which are basic, but brilliant.

None of these are random recommendations. All the coffee makers in this guide are tried and tested, or recommended by trustworthy baristas. I'll go into the details of each one, so you can decide which is the best option for you.

Best pod machine

A black Nespresso coffee machine with a coffee cup full of cofffee underneath, another coffee cup to the right and a yellow and green coffee pod on either side

(Image credit: Nespresso)
Best pod machine

Specifications

Dimensions: 8.6 x 14 x 10.4 inches
Weight : 7.9 lbs
Power: 1500 watts
Brew sizes: 1.35-12 oz

Reasons to buy

+
Sleek & stylish design 
+
Easy to use 
+
Smartphone connectivity 
+
Brews a wide range of coffee types 

Reasons to avoid

-
Only compatible with Nespresso Vertuo pods 
-
No temperature control on milk frother

The Vertuo Next comes in just under over the $200 mark at $129. However, it's worth every penny. We've tested a range of Nespresso machines and have loved them all. This has exceptionally good user as well as reviewer feedback. It's compact, quick, and makes a really smooth brew. You can make hot coffee and iced coffee with it too.

On top of our review, our Head of eCommerce Alex David has used one of these since last Black Friday, and he loves it. 'There are better coffee makers out there, but this makes pretty great coffee at a touch of a button', says Alex. 'It's the perfect companion for working at home, because there's nothing to do with this machine. You hit the button and have a decent cup of coffee in seconds, saving you time away from your desk'.

It is a little noisy compared to other models, but it's a worthwhile compromise for the price and size. You should also bear in mind that old school pods won't work for this machine - you need Vertuo pods, available at Amazon or through a great subscription service from Nespresso

There's more information in our full Nespresso Vertuo Next review.

Best espresso maker

Wacaco Picopresso on a white backgroundH&G gold badge

(Image credit: Amazon)
Best espresso maker

Specifications

Dimensions: 4.17 x 3.07 x 2.8 inches
Weight: 0.77 lbs
Tank capacity: 80 ml
Pressure: 18 bars

Reasons to buy

+
Compact
+
Great for travel
+
Makes a good present
+
Easy to use
+
Quiet

Reasons to avoid

-
Very hands-on
-
Limited functions

At $130, this is the cheapest espresso maker that I've tested. Whether you're often on the go, looking for a compact option, or on a budget, this a mini and mighty option for excellent espressos.

This is about the size of a can of cola and it's not to be underestimated. You can set up, use, and clean it in less than five minutes. It's quite hands-on, but that means that it's quiet in the mornings. It's also beautifully packaged, so the perfect gift to someone else, or, for yourself. You don't have steam, or milk frothing options, and you'll need a kettle or hot water from another appliance.

You can find out more in our Wacaco Picopresso review.

Best drip coffee maker

A Ninja 12 Cup Programmable Brewer on a white background

(Image credit: Ninja)

3. Ninja CE251 Programmable Brewer

Best drip coffee maker

Specifications

Dimensions: 8 x 10 x 14 inches
Capacity: 12 cups (60 fl. oz)
Material: Stainless steel, glass, plastic
Weight: 7 lbs
Wattage: 1100

Reasons to buy

+
Great price
+
Easy to clean
+
Very popular
+
Makes good coffee

Reasons to avoid

-
Can be messy to pour

The Ninja CE251 is on its way to our test kitchen for our team of experts to review. However, it would be remiss of me to exclude it from our list. This drip coffee maker is extremely well reviewed, with 4.6 stars on Amazon. All other reviewers hail it as one of the best out there, especially for the price. It's really quiet too.

It seems easy to use, effortless to clean, and relatively subtle on the countertops. Most users say that the coffee stays really hot (for up to 4 hours) and tastes smooth too. A few models had faulty, leaky carafes, which pour some coffee onto the countertop if you aren't careful. However, Ninja seems to be great at replacing them if this happens.

Best French press

Bodum Chambord French PressH&G gold badge

(Image credit: Bodum)

4. Bodum Chambord French Press

Best French press

Specifications

Size: 12 oz. 17 oz., 34 oz., 51 oz.
Material: Stainless Steel and glass
Filter: Double Filter
Dishwasher Safe: Yes
RRP: $20-$55 / £18-£50

Reasons to buy

+
Contemporary design
+
Easy to use
+
Double filter minimizes graininess 

Reasons to avoid

-
Glass is thin and doesn't retain heat well

This was runner-up to the most expensive French press on the market in our roundup of the best French press coffee makers on the market. This normally retails around $40, but if you look for the Bodum Chambord on Amazon, it's often reduced. 

You could buy cheaper French presses, but this is a worthwhile investment. Not only is it beautiful, it's durable, and it makes excellent coffee too. It's thoughtfully designed, easy to clean, and the double filter makes a smooth cup of joe. Be careful with the glass carafe as it's very thin and doesn't keep heat in as well as a vacuum-wall French press might.

Best pour over

Chemex Pour Over

(Image credit: Chemex)

5. Chemex Eight Cup Classic Pour-Over Glass Coffee Maker

The best pour-over coffee maker

Specifications

Size: 40 oz.
Material: Borosilicate glass
Height: 9"
Dishwasher safe: Yes

Reasons to buy

+
Creates ultra smooth coffee
+
Easy to use and clean
+
Carafe can be refrigerated and reheated without altering flavor of coffee

Reasons to avoid

-
Must use Chemex filters, which aren’t readily available at retail stores

Regardless of price, this is a universally resepected pour-over. You only need to read the thousands of five star reviews to see why it's so popular. It looks beautiful, pours effortlessly, and you can store any leftover coffee as iced coffee without dirtying another container.

If you're entertaining, the 8-cup capacity is more than enough for a crowd. Moreover, the non-porous Borosilicate glass won't retain any odors or chemicals from your coffee, so it'll last you years. 

Best moka pot

Silver Bialetti Moka pot

(Image credit: Amazon)

6. Bialetti Moka Express

Best moka pot

Specifications

Dimensions: 5 x 5 x 5 inches
Material: Aluminium
Weight: 1.01 lbs
Capacity: 4.4 oz

Reasons to buy

+
Compact
+
Makes great coffee
+
Easy to use and clean

Reasons to avoid

-
Handle gets hot
-
Expensive for a moka pot

Moka pots are a really simple method for brewing espresso. As with the Picopresso, you don't need a behemoth on your countertop. Instead, this European, vintage-looking Moka pot can pack neatly away. 

We are in the process of reviewing the Bialetti and we already love it. It makes flavorful, smooth coffee almost effortlessly. The moka pot is compact, easy to use, and easy to clean. The only down side is that it's more expensive than moka pots (although at under $40, it's still an excellent price) and it can get quite hot on the stove.

Our Verdict

A moka pot on a gas stove top

(Image credit: GettyImages)

These are the best coffee makers on the market that won't cost you hundreds of dollars. If you like to pre-infuse your coffee and steam your milk, you can look at espresso machines and coffee makers. However, if you're content with a simple, well-rounded brew, there's not much point investing in anything more extravagant than these.

FAQs

Which coffee maker should I buy?

Different types of coffee makers will suit different people. The more expensive automatic coffee makers and espresso makers are brilliant if you are passionate about making café-quality cups of coffee with perfectly frothed milk. If you like a smooth, simple coffee, here are the options:

Pod Machine
Pod machines are automatic and easy to use. They're basic and won't require much cleaning and maintenance. The downside of pod machines is the waste, but you can buy re-usable pods to minimise waste. You can choose different pods to suit your different flavor profiles.

Espresso Maker
The espresso maker featured in this guide is an exception to all other espresso makers. It's compact, manual, and quiet. If you travel a lot, only drink espresso, but still value quality, this is a great option. Espressos taste rich, smooth, and strong.

Drip Coffee Maker
Drip coffee is smooth and delicate. It's a lot like filter coffee, but you can use fresh coffee grounds so that you know it's good quality. Drip coffee machines are slower than pod and espresso machines, but they can brew large quantities and you can often pre-set them to brew in advance too.

French Press
French press coffee is one of the most acidic and bitter coffees that you can brew. However, this gives a really well-balanced and rich cup. The process is similar to drip coffee in that you can brew multiple cups at once and you'll have control over the strength too.

Pour-Over
Much like filter coffee, pour over coffee is very smooth and delicate. It's easy to clean and the whole process takes about 15 minutes. Again, you can brew multiple cups at once. You'll need to invest in a re-usable filter, or single-use filter paper as well.

Moka Pot
These are an excellent option if you like an espresso. Moka pots are slow to brew and you need to keep an eye on them on the stove, but they're brilliant. The coffee it makes is almost three times as strong as a regular cup, bold, and has a heavy body flavor too.

What's the best coffee maker under $100?

The range of coffee makers that I've recommended in this guide are all great options. My favorite option is the Wacaco Picopresso, it's compact, high-quality, and makes a really smooth coffee.

Does a more expensive coffee maker make a difference?

I wouldn't judge a coffee maker based on price. Lots of more expensive models, such as espresso machines and bean to cup machines, will have advanced features. These will range from a steam wand, automatic timers, and a range of capabilities. These coffee makers will all make a smooth, full-bodied cup of coffee, they just might not froth milk and make cold brew too.

How much should I spend on a coffee maker?

It depends on the type of coffee maker that you buy. I would expect a French press or pour over to cost between $30 and $100. As you pay more money, you'll have more features. If you buy an espresso machine or automatic coffee maker, they can cost up to $1,500.

Laura Honey
eCommerce Editor

Laura is our eCommerce editor. As a fully qualified barista, she's our expert in all things coffee and has tested over thirty of the best coffee makers on the market. She has also interviewed Q-Graders and world-leading experts in the coffee industry, so has an intimate knowledge of all things coffee. Before joining Homes & Gardens, she studied English at Oxford University. Whilst studying, she trained as a master perfumer and worked in the luxury fragrance industry for five years. Her collection of home fragrance is extensive and she's met and interviewed five of the world's finest perfumers (also known as 'noses'). As a result of this expansive fragrance knowledge, she always puts quality and style over quantity and fads. Laura looks for products which have been designed simply and with thoughtful finishes.