Best Budget Espresso Coffee Maker

Here’s the deal, you DON’T need an expensive machine in order to make a cuppa high quality espresso.

Even entry level espresso machines in the range of $100 to $200 can produce delicious cups of espresso. That said, with it’s low price tag will mean that you might have to have to do a little bit of the work yourself (like grinding the beans using a separate grinder or frothing the milk separately etc).

>> Also read: Best Overall Espresso Machine

Owning an espresso machine used to cost a bomb and was usually only seen as something owned only by professional baristas or wealthy groups of people. Well that’s not the case anymore, there are many affordable espresso machines on the market today that cater to the mass market audience.

 ProductPrice
1Mr. Coffee ECMP50 Cappuccino/Espresso Maker Check Price
2De’Longhi EC155 15 BAR Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Maker Check Price
3Bialetti Stovetop Espresso Maker Check Price
4Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker (model: 40715) Check Price
5MiniPresso GR Espresso Maker Check Price
6Handpresso ‘Wild’ Handheld Espresso Maker Check Price

Best Espresso Coffee Machine under $100, $200 and $500

To make thing simple, here’s our list of top pick of espresso makers classified under $100, $200 and $500 respectively.

1) Mr. Coffee ECMP50 Cappuccino/Espresso Maker Review

The Mr. Coffee ECMP50 Cappuccino & Espresso Maker is an automatic espresso machine that combines pleasing aesthetic and comprehensive functionality. The Mr. Coffee has quicker brewing than most espresso and cappuccino machines thanks to its thermal block heating system. What’s more, it has the ability to pull two shots at once, making preparation for your morning coffee even faster and easier.

The machine also comes with a removable water tank and drip tray, which makes maintenance and cleaning at ease. The pump system provides the necessary 15 bar pressure required that extracts dark rich espresso brew that tastes good. The built-in frothing arm is perfect for making milk or cream based espresso drinks like Cappuccino, latte.

Features:

  • Thermal block heating system
  • Dual-shot brewing
  • Removable 40 ounce water reservoir
  • Powerful milk frother
  • Removable drip tray
  • One-Touch brew and steam controls
Pros
  • Easy to use and clean
  • Compact size with really nice aesthetic look
  • The steam feature is powerful and simple to use
  • Affordable
  • Made in USA (yup)
Cons
  • Lacks an automatic drip feature

2) De’Longhi EC155 15 BAR Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Maker Review

The De’Longhi EC155 Espresso maker features a stainless steel boiler with 15-bar pump pressure and allows users the option of brewing easy-serving espresso (ESE) pods with its patented dual-filter holder. It’s self-priming operation makes start-up preparation easy and it’s removable water tank and drip tray makes cleaning easy.

This cappuccino and espresso coffee maker allows brewing with 2 individual thermostats, which enable users to enjoy cappuccinos and espresso shots at the desired temperature. For its compact size, the De’Longhi EC155 features a one-liter water tank and a single boiler!

Bonus: The machine also comes with a cup warmer which keeps your cup of espresso or cappuccino warm for a longer duration.

Note: Make it a habit to maintain a full reservoir so as to prevent burning out of the boiler.

Pros
  • Easy to clean
  • Top notch crema
  • Good water reservoir size (35 oz)
  • Removable water tank
  • Easy to clean drip tray
  • Two separate thermostats
  • Fast heat up time
  • 15 bar professional pump pressure
  • Self-priming operation (shorter wait time)
  • Stainless steel boiler
  • Built-in swivel jet frother
  • 3 in 1 function filter holder (includes ESE pod option)
Cons
  • Frothing wand can be too short to some (3 ¼ inches)
  • The built in tamper is made of plastic  (we are nit-picking here)
  • This is a single boiler, hence temperature surf is needed after steaming in order to brew


 

3) Bialetti Stovetop Espresso Maker

Though technically not espresso (absence of water pressure and crema), the coffee produced. Stovetop Espresso Makers (also known as moka pots) is rich and showcases the flavour of the coffee bean used.

>> Also read: Best Stovetop Espresso Maker

The Bialetti Moka Express Stovetop Espresso Maker is an ideal option for coffee drinker who wished to enjoy espresso without having to add another electric appliance to their kitchen countertop.

Pros
  • Very easy to setup and use
  • Compact and convenient
  • Easy to clean
  • Available in 1-12 cup sizes. The three cup produces a nice equivalent to a double shot espresso for a single person
Cons
  • Requires a stove

4) Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker (model: 40715)

The Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker is an espresso machine for anyone looking for something that’s affordable, easy-to-use and offers flexibility. It is easy to use with only 3 main buttons to control – on/off, steam and espresso brewing. It has the option to use espresso pods or ground coffee beans and allows users to make up to two cups of espresso at one go thanks to its two spouts brewing heads.

The machines comes with a convenient long reach milk frother and has a 40-ounce reservoir (equivalent to about five cups) that allows you to add water without turning off the machine. The removable drip tray allows room for taller mugs and make cleaning a breeze.

Tips: Use extra-fine grounds for best espresso result.

Pros
  • Affordable & Easy to use
  • Steam wand included
  • Can use pods or ground coffee
  • Can brew 2 cups of espresso one time
  • Easy to clean
Cons
  • Steamer takes a while to heat up
  • Long recovery time


5) MiniPresso GR Espresso Maker

The Minipresso GR allows you to make quality espresso on the go. Measuring only 7″ long and weights below 1lb (size of a coke can), it fits in your backpack, carry on luggage and desk drawer.

The Minipresso is hand powered, no batteries are required and no electric cord to manage. You will need to use an external water source like a kettle, insulated water bottle, microwave, or from a flight attendant. Fresh ground dark coffee beans are recommended for best results.

Note: Avoid tamping too hard or using ground coffee that are too fine to avoid blowing out a seal in the pump.

How to use?

  1. Disassemble the machine.
  2. Fill the scoop and place filter basket on top before turning it over. Tap to drop the coffee grounds.
  3. Remove the scoop and tap the filter basket against the counter to level the coffee grounds (avoid tamping).
  4. Place filter basket in the grooves on housing, and screw on the minipresso’s nozzle-end.
  5. Fill boiling water up to the line of the water reservoir. Carefully screw it to the bottom of the pump casing.
  6. Invert the minipresso machine and place it over the pre-heated espresso cup before pumping slowly.
  7. As the pressure starts to build, the very first spurt of espresso will start dispensing. Wait for about 10 secs and continue pumping steadily until the pressure releases and the espresso stops dispensing.
Pros
  • Quick and easy shot of espresso
  • Produces consistent results
  • Ideal for travelling
  • Sleek design and intuitive operation
  • Food grade and BPA-free plastic
Cons
  • Can be damaged if espresso is tamped
  • Nozzle can’t be disassembled to allow for more thorough cleaning (nit-picking)
  • Only makes about 1 – 1.5 shots at a time (again, nit-picking)

6) Handpresso ‘Wild’ Handheld Espresso Maker

The ‘Wild’ Handpresso machine is truly an on-the-go handheld espresso maker we absolutely love. This compact, portable espresso maker works very much like a bicycle’s tire pump and have 16 bars of pressure that forces water into the coffee grounds.

It is compatible with easy-serving espresso (ESE) coffee pods or fresh grounds and is really one of a kind in terms of portability.

Pros
  • No electricity is needed
  • Can even use the end as a tamper
  • Ideal for camping and travel
  • Durable yet lightweight; rinses clean–no disassembly necessary
Cons
  • Need to oil machine once in awhile to enjoy pump works as well

>> Think you might be able to stretch beyond US$500 for an all round espresso machine that’s built to last for years? Be sure to check this post for our pick of the best espresso machines.


Where to buy? – Most specialty stores don’t usually carry low end Espresso makers due to its low margin.The best way in our opinion would be to get it online. Besides the convenience, most sites list out the specs clearly which allow side by side comparison. Sites like Amazon also enable buyers to see product ratings as well as comments from other buyers.

Rule of thumb – For starters who are new to espresso, a machine under US$100 should be able to get the job done. Espresso in the US$200 and above region will come with some nice features that will help control the process better. A more expensive brewer will come with features that gives you more control over the brewing process and produce more consistent results.


Final Thoughts

While these machines are easy on the wallet, they certainly are not shabby on its features!

Be sure to consider factors such as the price, boiler type, bar pressure, size and aesthetic look before making your decision. They are huge determinants when looking for an espresso machine and can you determine the best espresso machine under 100 dollars that truly satisfies your lifestyle.

What espresso machine are you currently using that does not cost a leg or arm? Or will you be trying any of these budget espresso makers listed? Leave us a comment to share your thoughts.