It’s not hyperbole to say that finding the perfect coffee maker is key to the…
What’s the best way to start your day? With a steaming mug of fresh-brewed coffee. Duh!
Our mornings are busy and seem to just get busier. We know how important fresh ground coffee is to a good cup of coffee. But who’s got time to grind coffee beans every morning?
We have a solution: a coffee maker with a grinder. Today, you can find coffee and espresso makers of all levels that include a grinder in the machine! Read on to learn more about what’s available on the market and what’s the best grind and brew coffee maker for you.
If you want to wake up to the freshest coffee possible, then yes. Yes, you do.
Programmable coffee makers are almost a staple in the American home. What better lure to get you out of bed than the aroma of freshly brewed coffee? But now that our coffee palate is more refined, we demand more. We deserve to wake up to freshly brewed, freshly ground coffee.
Science can explain why freshly ground coffee is so important. Carbon dioxide and volatile compounds have a huge impact on the flavor and aroma of the final brew. These dissipate slowly after roasting. But from the moment you grind the coffee, you quickly lose the gas and volatile compounds.
You might think that if you already have a high-end grinder, you won’t need a combo grind and brew machine. But ground coffee can go stale within minutes of grinding. Do you grind and load up your coffee maker at night? By the time it brews in the morning, the coffee will have significantly less flavor and aroma that it would have the night before.
Make sure you get a coffee maker with a good grinder. One of the biggest things you can do to improve your morning joe is to use fresh, evenly ground coffee. Cheap machines usually have a blade grinder that gives an uneven grind. Make sure your machine uses a burr grinder, which gives a uniform grind.
You may be surprised by how many grind and brew machines there are. And the price range varies from under $50 to thousands of dollars. And with so many different features, how do you decide? Here, we’ve built a list of quality coffee machines with grinders. We broke this into three sections: drip coffee makers, automatic espresso machines, and super-automatic espresso machines.
These will be the least expensive. Why pay for what you don’t need? They deliver fully flavored coffee made from freshly ground beans. We’ll help you sort out which one might be the best coffee maker with a grinder for you.
This coffee maker has loads of extra features to ensure a great-tasting cup of coffee. You can set it up to 24 hours in advance. Adjustable settings allow you to choose the grind size and brew strength.
A constellation of other features also makes this coffee maker desirable. To start, it has a charcoal water filter. In many places, tap water has chemicals that make the water taste not so great. The built-in filter means you don't have to buy bottled water.
Another helpful feature is the permanent coffee filter. This offers two benefits. One, you're not wasting money and natural resources on paper filters. Two, by not using a paper filter, the natural oils in the coffee pass through into the cup, which adds to the overall taste and aroma of the coffee.
While you can choose a thermal or glass carafe, we really like the thermal carafe. It's double-walled and seems to keep the coffee really hot. Another little thing you might like about the carafe is that it has a comfort-grip handle.
Sometimes you might need to use pre-ground beans. With this machine, you can do that. You can simply turn off the grinder and still wake up to that steaming cup of Joe.
Overall, this coffee maker gives you a lot of bang for the buck. While you will find cheaper coffee makers, it's not a bargain if it doesn't do what you want.
The Breville Grind Control Coffee Maker has many of the same high-end features as the Cuisinart Grind & Brew. It has a burr grinder to ensure even grinding. You can adjust the grind as well as the brew strength.
One of the stand-out features of this model is its ability to brew a single cup of coffee. On many drip brewers, brewing a single cup often results in weak coffee. This coffee maker can hold the water to let the grounds steep and develop full flavor. Instead of it draining into the carafe, you can have this machine brew your coffee directly into your cup. It offers 7.5-inches clearance to fit even travel mugs.
Another unique feature is its calibrated grind control. Beans from different parts of the world can vary in size. A smaller bean takes less time to grind that a larger bean. This grind and brew coffee maker can adjust the grind time to accommodate any type of coffee bean.
The biggest drawback to this coffee maker is that the grinder is difficult to clean. Oils can build up, especially if you tend to use darker roasts. As oil can go rancid, this could result in a not-so-great tasting coffee. Also, the buildup can clog the grind, slowing it down or causing it to wear out sooner than expected.
While this machine has many of the features of other grind and brew machines, the performance doesn't quite measure up. This model has more plastic, so doesn't have a sleek look. Another drawback is that this machine does not have a permanent filter.
The controls are not as intuitive. That can be a problem, as we've found many complaints about badly translated instructions.
On the plus side, this model is programable. It has a burr grinder, so it does give an even grind. Overall, if you find a great deal on this machine it will do the job. But if you want more control and you care about precision, you may want to go with a different model.
Capresso Coffee Team has two different lines of the grind and brew coffee maker: the TS and the Pro. Here, we're looking and the more affordable option, the TS.
This coffee pot with grinder has some features as the Cuisinart and Breville but at a lower price point. It does have grind and brew strength settings, but fewer than in the other two coffee makers. The burr grinder is not as powerful as other machines, but it still produces a uniform grind.
This machine has gotten mixed reviews when it comes to longevity. It also has complaints that it does not evenly distribute the water over the grinds, especially when it comes to smaller brew sizes.
Perhaps the biggest difference between this coffee maker and the more expensive ones is the plastic housing instead of stainless steel. Aside from that, you'll find many of the same features you would expect in a high-end grind and brew machine.
This has one has simple push-button operation. For example, push the Grind/Brew button if that's what you want, or push the Grind Off button if using pre-ground coffee. We also like the curved spout that prevents drips.
The warming plate will keep coffee warm up to two hours after brewing
Besides taste, a big advantage of the espresso is that it’s quick to make. You can usually make a satisfying shot of espresso at home in less than a minute. These machines can range from about a hundred dollars to several hundred dollars.
We fell in love with the look of this machine. It's packed with features, yet maintains a small footprint on your counter. The stainless-steel face and simple buttons and dials make this very user friendly. The gauge in the center clearly marks the optimal pressure for espresso. A touch of a button lets you choose between a single or a double shot.
The adjustable dial for the grind allows you to use different types of beans and roasts. Larger beans take longer to grind. Whenever you try a new coffee, you may need to adjust the grind to get the perfect espresso.
This machine has a purge feature. That can help pre-warm the machine's inner workings to maintain the proper temperature.
You'll get all the accessories you need with the Barista Express. It comes with a 16-ounce stainless steel frothing pitcher, cleaning disc and tablets, cleaning brush, and Allen Key. This model also has a water filter.
This machine offers a little more flexibility than other espresso machines on our list. To start, it has a hot water spout separate from the steam want. This allows you to easily make Americanos or tea in an instant.
It also has some features that help you create the perfect espresso drink at home. The steam wand has settings to either froth or foam the milk to make perfect lattes or cappuccinos. You just put the pitcher under the wand and the machine does the work for you.
It also takes the guess work out of how hard to tamp the grinds. They call it the SmartTamping Station. You fit the portafilter into the tamper and slide the lever. You'll also get accessories, including a frothing pitcher, descaling solution, and cleaning brush.
This machine is a bit larger and heavier than the Breville. If you plan on this machine living on your counter, be sure to measure all dimensions.
La Specialista has a bean hopper almost three times larger than the Breville. But bigger is not always better. The hopper sits up high on top of the machine, meaning that it won't fit underneath many cabinets. And if there are beans in the hopper you can't just remove it for storage. You'll end up with beans all over the counter and floor.
Now we’re getting into the ultimate luxury of at-home coffee brewing. With the touch of a button, these machines handle all the details to deliver a silky shot of espresso. Many also include a steam wand, allowing you to make lattes and cappuccinos easily.
The De'Longhi Dinamica is a versatile coffee machine with grinder. It can make espresso drinks and regular coffee and has a setting for making iced coffee drinks. Being fully automatic, this coffee maker can complete 18 different drinks with just the touch of a button.
This model is easy to clean. The brew unit is removable to get a thorough cleaning. The drip tray is dishwasher safe.
For iced coffee drinks, the machine automatically heats the water to a lower temperature. It pre-infuses the grounds (for a coffee bloom) and then steeps the coffee to ensure full flavor even with the lower temperature.
When making espresso drinks, the steam wand has two settings. One is for steamed milk and the other is to make the milk foam.
For countertop concerns, this machine is narrow but deeper than many other machines on this list. This could be a concern if your counters don't come out very far. Be sure to measure the space before purchase.
This machine does one thing, but it does it very well. It makes a single serving of coffee. But it can make three different kinds. You can choose a ristretto, espresso, or coffee.
The difference between these three drinks is grind size, amount of water, and extraction time. You may not be familiar with the ristretto. It is the most concentrated. It uses very fine grind with an extraction time of about 15 seconds. The result is sweeter and slightly thicker than an espresso.
The A1 uses a proprietary Pulse Extraction Process (PEP). This process maximizes the extraction process. The machine also has a fine-tuned grinder that works quickly to preserve the most flavor and aroma of the coffee.
A notable drawback of this machine is that it does not enable you to make café-style espresso drinks. There is no steam wand. That means you would need to purchase (and make counter space for) a separate milk frother if you want to make espresso drinks like lattes and cappuccinos. However, if you are a coffee purist, it's definitely worth checking out.
This Italian-made machine packs a lot of features into its stainless-steel body. It features a unique Gaggia Adapting System. It automatically adjusts its grinding system to the coffee beans you use. It can make two coffee shots at a time.
For convenience, the machine gives you access to important parts from the front of the machine. Both the water reservoir and the dreg box simply slide out from the front. This brewer also features a panarello steam wand, which simplifies the frothing process.
One thing to note is that this machine does not perform as well with oily beans. You would be better sticking with medium roasted beans.
The Gaggia Brera Super Automatic Espresso Machine is easy to clean. It features an automatic rinse cycle. For more thorough cleaning, the brew group is removable, allowing you to rinse it in hot water in the sink. It also has a descaling alert.
When you’re looking for the best grind and brew coffee maker on the market, you have many choices. Here we’ll discuss some issues you may want to consider when making your purchase.
This is the biggest decision when choosing a coffee machine with grinder. Can you make do with drip coffee or do you need the more expensive espresso machine? The price can be hundreds, and sometimes thousands, of dollars. This video talks about the nuances of drip vs. espresso, so may help you decide.
Drip coffee makers are designed to make a large batch of coffee, then keep it warm for a while, usually about two hours. If you have a lot of coffee drinkers or you drink a continuous flow of coffee, you’ll probably want a drip machine. Some drip machines do also have a setting for a single cup or small batch.
Espresso drinks must be made one at a time. Well, some machines can brew two shots of espresso at a time. The point is, they are not designed to please a crowd. But many believe that the taste and experience of espresso far exceeds a drip coffee.
With an espresso machine, you open a world of specialty drink possibilities. Personally, I strongly prefer espresso with steamed milk, but café-style espresso drinks can get quite elaborate. Some espresso machines only make the coffee, but most include a steam wand to turn regular milk into an extraordinary experience.
So, you’ve decided that you need an espresso grind and brew machine. Next, you’ll need to decide if you want an automatic or super-automatic espresso maker.
We’ll start at the beginning. First, we had manual machines. You had to pump a lever to build up pressure. Then you had to time how long to pull the shot for. Then we had semi-automatic. These would build the pressure for you, but you had to start and stop the flow of water.
On this list, we show both automatic and super-automatic espresso machines. The automatic pulls the shot for you. You don’t have to worry about the timing. You still have to deposit the grinds into the permafilter, tamp down the grinds, insert and twist the permafilter into place, select strength and size, then start the machine.
A super-automatic machine measures the grinds tamps it and pulls the shot for you. You just have to make sure that there’s a cup underneath to catch the black gold. It is the ultimate inconvenience. These are the ultimate in convenience, but also the ultimate in price.
It may simply come down to cost. But, even if you could get the super-automatic, would you want to? You get more control with a regular automatic. It’s up to you.
This question only applies to drip coffee makers. A key point of these machines is to keep a large amount of coffee warm for a period of time. The two main ways to do this are with a glass carafe on a heating plate or with a thermal insulated carafe.
Machines with glass carafes are usually less expensive. Also, with a glass carafe, it’s easy to see exactly how much coffee is left. It’s very disappointing to go to pour a cup of coffee from a thermal carafe only to realize there were just a few drops left.
The downside to the glass carafe is the extended heat to the coffee. Sustained heat can ruin the nuances of a perfectly brewed pot. Some people don’t mind this, so it comes down to personal preference. A thermal carafe will retain the heat of the coffee. It does not add extra heat, so you won’t get a burned taste.
You’ll notice that some machines on our list stress how quiet the grinder is. Does that really matter when looking for the best coffee maker with a grinder? The answer is a firm maybe.
If you plan on making coffee when others are sleeping, you may want to look for a machine that has a quiet operation. This may be the case if you get up early or if you work a different shift. Also, some folks are sensitive to noise.
If everyone is up at the same time and you don’t mind the noise, then you may not need a quiet grinder. Knowing which features are important to you helps you get what you want and not pay for what you don’t need.
Regular cleaning and maintenance are critical to consistent results. With grind and brew machines, it’s especially important to keep the grinder and chute clean. Otherwise, stale grinds may be mixed in with the fresh.
Some machines do this cleaning automatically. Other machines offer easy access to the chute and grinder. You’ll want to carefully consider ease of cleaning when making your selection.
Another tip is about the coffee roast. The roasting process pulls the oils to the surface of the bean. A darker roast means an oilier coffee bean. These oils might stay in the grinder. Because oil goes rancid, it can ruin the taste of your coffee.
Also, oily coffee can clog several parts of the machine. This may shorten the life of a coffee pot with a grinder or lead to inconsistent results. If you love dark roasts, be sure to pick a grinder that can handle the extra oil.
We have two top picks for you, one for drip coffee makers and one for espresso machines.
If all you need is regular coffee, then our top pick is the Cuisinart Grind & Brew 12-Cup Coffee Maker. For starters, we like the overall look.
The controls are very easy to understand and use, and it gives you plenty of control to get coffee exactly the way you like it. We also like the built-in water filter, because yucky tap water leads to yucky coffee. Finally, the double-walled thermal carafe keeps the coffee at the perfect temperature.
Our top pick for a grind and brew espresso machine is the Breville The Barista Express Espresso Machine. Like our other top pick, this will look great on your countertop with its sleek design.
While it has many features similar to the De’Longhi La Specialista Espresso Machine with Sensor Grinder, we like the option of manually controlling how much coffee grind to put in the portafilter. Also, the compact design conserves precious counter real estate.
In the end, be honest with yourself about what you want and how much work you’ll put in. With this guide, you can select a grind and brew machine that will keep you caffeinated for many years to come.