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Best Espresso Machine For Beginners in 2022

Sara Henz
  Oct 1, 2022 2:57 PM

Making quality espresso in a coffee shop on a home machine often takes a lot of practice, but the best new models have made it a lot easier. Better yet, you can buy a machine capable of making great drinks for under $1,000. 


Overview

After more than 120 hours of research and testing, we think Breville Bambino Plus is the best choice for new and moderately skilled enthusiasts. It's powerful and easy to use, capable of producing rich, consistent photos and steaming perfectly textured milk. Bambino Plus also has a sleek, compact design that fits most kitchens.

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Review

1- Breville Bambino

The Breville Bambino is our pick for the finest home espresso machine for beginners. It's semi-automatic, so you'll have to put in some effort, but nothing an espresso novice can't manage.

Breville's newest thermojet technology is used in the Bambino, which gets the machine ready to brew in three seconds. Furthermore, there is essentially little downtime between brewing and steaming. The Bambino has low-pressure pre-infusion, which primes the ground coffee before to brewing for perfect espresso extraction. The PID temperature controller ensures consistent shoots at ideal water temperature.

Bambino comes with a manual steam wand capable of producing rich microfoam, allowing you to hone your latte art abilities. The learning curve is steep, but the Bambino is convenient since it has a one-hole wand. This method is slower (approximately one minute to froth), but more forgiving since you have time to aerate and expand the milk.

The brewing procedure is simple: choose between single and double espresso shots. You may manually program each choice to dial in the shot by holding the button to start brewing and releasing it to re-program the volume.

Bambino is small and takes up little kitchen counter space. The water tank bears the price for the machine's modest size: it holds 47 oz, which is less than most other machines. However, given how little the Bambino is, it's still a respectable size.

The lack of a built-in grinder on the Bambino is reasonable given its low price. You'll need to purchase a separate grinder, which means you'll need to make additional room in your kitchen.

Pros

  • Size is small.
  • Quick heat-up time
  • Simple to use
  • Affordable

Cons

  • There is no built-in grinder.
  • Tamper-proof plastic

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2- Breville Barista Touch

The touchscreen panel on which you may swipe among images of customized beverages gives the Breville Barista Touch its name. You may quickly prepare your coffee by pressing a button. However, you may alter the settings and store your selections for future use. The gadget comes with five pre-programmed cocktails and allows you to store up to eight drink creations. You may store your grind, brew, milk, strength, and drink temperature choices. The Barista Touch combines the best of both worlds, since it is a perfect combination of an automated and semi-automatic equipment.

Another notable aspect of the Barista Touch is the automated steam wand. It's simple to use: just lay the milk pitcher on a temperature sensor underneath the wand and choose automatic or manual frothing. You may also choose from a variety of temperatures and milk textures. When the milk is frothed, the wand cleans itself using the auto-purge function.

The Barista Touch, like the Bambino, uses thermojet technology and is ready to brew in three seconds. PID temperature control and pre-infusion are also available for consistent and tasty shots.

Because this is a single boiler machine, you cannot brew and steam at the same time, although there is a minimal wait time between the tasks.

Finally, and most crucially, the Barista Touch has a conical burr grinder with 30 settings. You have complete control over how fine the coffee grinds are.

Pros

  • Up to eight drink concoctions may be pre-programmed.
  • Conical burr grinder integrated with 30 settings
  • Milk frothing may be done manually or automatically.
  • Self-cleaning and automatic steam wand

Cons

  • For a semi-automatic with a single boiler, it is pricey.

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3- Gaggia Classic Pro

The Gaggia Classic Pro has a stainless steel body, an industrial steam wand, and a 58mm portafilter, which is common on commercial espresso machines. Whereas most machines feature a 54mm basket, the Gaggia Classic has a 58mm basket, allowing you to put more freshly ground coffee and have a bigger puck, allowing for more equal extraction over a broader area.

The Gaggia Classic Pro features a single boiler and is not the quickest espresso machine on the market. It takes up to five minutes to heat up, but once hot, it steams in 30 seconds. You can also draw numerous shots at once, which is great if you're mixing cocktails for a group.

This gadget contains three buttons that indicate whether it is ready for usage. The water tank is 72 oz, the biggest on our list, and you may prepare numerous beverages without needing to replenish it.

The two holes on the tip of Gaggia's steam wand allow it to readily produce high pressure. The wand produces enough microfoam for latte art. Finally, a cup warmer plate can keep up to five cups warm and ready to use at all times.

The one thing I didn't like is that there is no built-in grinder, so you will have to get one separately. Also, since the coffee dispenser isn't adjustable, you're restricted to the cups and mugs that can fit under the spout.

Pros

  • Warming tray for cups
  • Professional steam wand
  • Portafilter 58mm
  • 72-ounce water tank

Cons

  • It takes five minutes to heat up.
  • The coffee dispenser is not adjustable.

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4- DeLonghi ECP 3420

Because the DeLonghi ECP 3420 is a low-cost machine, it features a plastic body with stainless steel embellishments. The material is ABS and is long-lasting, so you won't have to worry about the machine's durability.

The ECP 3420 employs a boiler system and has a quick heating time – less than a minute from start to finish. It also boasts a quick warming technology that enables you to draw several espresso drinks or switch to steaming in 30 seconds. However, since the boiler isn't very strong, you must use a pressured basket and a coarser grind, limiting the taste possibilities.

This machine has a 15-bar pressure pump, which is the industry standard for espresso machines, as well as a pressurized portafilter. You may change the pressure and extraction level to give your espresso more or less body.

The steam wand is operated manually. It heats the milk effectively, but it often runs out of steam (literally) and is the weakest link in this system.

I also didn't like that the tamper and portafilter are plastic, which prevented me from getting a good puck in the filter. You'll almost certainly need stainless steel components as well as a grinder. Even while this is a low-cost system, bear in mind that you'll want to invest as your brewing talents improve.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Rapid brewing method for drawing shots quickly
  • Minimalist footprint
  • Disposable drip tray

Cons

  • Microform cannot be created with enough steam pressure.

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5- Jura E8

The Jura E8 espresso machine is a super-automatic espresso maker. It contains an LED panel that leads you through the programming options – you can adjust the grind size, drink temperature, shot volume, and foaming levels to obtain the precise drink you want. The LED display also indicates when it is time to descale and dump the used coffee puck container. If you don't like the display, you may disable it using the six buttons adjacent to it.

Jura is well-known for its brewing innovations, beginning with the Intelligent Pre-Brew Aroma System, or IPBAS. The machine detects how much coffee you use and automatically adjusts the quantity of water used to ensure optimum taste and intensity. The Pulse Extraction Process (P.E.P.) drives water through the ground coffee in pulses (brief bursts), resulting in a richer shot.

E8 features a six-setting Aroma G3 conical burr grinder. In one grind cycle, the machine can dose up to 16g of beans, which is comparable to commercial devices. After one grind cycle, you may enjoy a double espresso or two cups of coffee.

Finally, the milk frother is fully automated and equipped with Professional Fine Foam Technology. The milk texture may be selected using the dial on the milk nozzle.

The water tank is one disadvantage. The Jura E8 features a huge 64 oz. water tank. However, since its automated cleaning mechanism purges water after each shot, the water tank quickly runs dry.

Pros

  • Patented advanced brewing method
  • a strong grinder
  • Milk frothing machine
  • Spouts on each sides

Cons

  • Magnet for fingerprints
  • pricier than other espresso machines

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6- Capresso Ultima Pro

The Capresso is one of our favorite low-cost alternatives. The self-tamping portafilter is a feature that all new baristas will appreciate. In most cases, you must measure the grounds, fill the basket, tamp the coffee, and load the portafilter. Capresso, on the other hand, features a brew head fashioned like a parabolic disc over the portafilter. When you lock in the portafilter, this brew head tamps the ground coffee. This eliminates the need for a separate tamper. Furthermore, tamping is essential for a proper espresso shot, and Capresso's self-tamping portafilter reduces the possibility of errors throughout the brewing process.

The heating method used by Capresso is a stainless steel lined Thermoblock that warms the espresso machine in less than 10 seconds. This applies to both steaming and pulling shots, resulting in a small delay between motions.

On a semi-automatic espresso machine, you usually have to halt the pouring. The Capresso is not one of them. Because it is a self-stopping machine, you will never have to ponder when to switch it off. You may also re-program the machine to stop at the desired water volume.

The detachable 34 oz water tank makes refilling and cleaning a breeze. The water tank is tiny, but you can make numerous espressos before having to replenish it.

Capresso's manual steam wand lets it to prepare single and double espresso shots as well as milk-based beverages. The Capresso's steam wand, on the other hand, is just adequate. It produces large bubbles rather than foam, therefore there is no delicate foam for lattes.

Pros

  • Tamping on the fly
  • There are single and double shot choices.
  • Quick heat-up time
  • Pouring is automatically stopped.

Cons

  • Magnet for fingerprints
  • There is no detachable drip tray.

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7- Philips 3200 LatteGo

If you want a super-automatic espresso machine but cannot afford a Jura, the Philips 3200 is a fantastic choice. The front-loading mechanism makes it simple to operate – the water tank, drip tray, and coffee puck container are all easily accessible and maintainable from the front.

Another feature that makes the Philips 3200 simple to use is the AquaClean water filter. If you brew two cups of espresso every day, you'll need to descale the espresso machine after 5,000 cups, or around seven years.

This machine can produce up to five different espresso beverages as well as hot water. The touch screen display allows you to choose the drink you desire. There are also some customization options, like the ability to choose your favorite strength and volume.

The LatteGo milk system inspired the name Phillips 3200. This is a method for automatically foaming milk. You fill a carafe with milk and connect it to the machine. Choose your desired froth level, push a button, and the machine will froth the milk and automatically pour it into your cup. There are no tubes that need to be removed and cleaned. The frother, on the other hand, only produces thick foam. Latte art does not use microfoam.

The Philips 3200 has a ceramic flat burr grinder with 12 sizes. The grinder is of great quality and will endure for a long time.

Pros

  • After 5,000 cups, descale the AquaClean filter.
  • LatteGo milk frothing machine
  • Grinders made of ceramic
  • Front-loading mechanism

Cons

  • There is just thick milk foam.
  • Obnoxious grinder

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Espresso Machine Types

When searching for an espresso machine, the first thing you should consider is the sort of machine you want. There are four types of espresso machines:

  • Manual
  • Semi-automatic
  • Completely automated
  • Super-automatic

Today, we'll concentrate on semi-automatic espresso machines since they provide the ideal mix of features for a home espresso novice. However, below is a rundown of each sort of espresso machine.

You have complete control over the final espresso product with manual espresso machines: you control the grinding, brewing, and milk temperatures, as well as the brew duration. It will take a lot of effort on your behalf. To generate enough pressure to draw a decent shot, you must employ force to pull on a lever. This is the ideal espresso machine if you're determined to make your drink precisely as you want it and don't mind a learning curve and a few errors along the way.

Super-automatic machines are the polar opposite of manual equipment in that you have almost no control over the brewing process. There isn't much space for experimentation since the machine regulates every stage of the process, from grinding to brewing to steaming. If you want to click a button and get a latte in under a minute, this is the espresso machine for you.

Semi-automatic and fully automated machines brew espresso with varying degrees of control in the middle. Semi-automatic espresso machines need you to choose how long to brew the espresso and to switch the brewing on and off. Fully-automatic machines, on the other hand, offer preset choices that brew the espresso with the pressing of a single button. At Craft Coffee Spot, we call them both semi-automatics since there isn't much of a difference.

Semi-automatic and fully automated machines may both include grinding presets, automatic temperature shut-off for the milk wand, and other features to remove some of the guesswork out of the equation. However, getting your espresso drink usually requires more effort than just pushing a button. Fill the basket with grinds, tamp it, then insert the portafilter into the machine.


Final Thought

The greatest espresso machine in my opinion is the Breville Bambino. It is incredibly user-friendly, inexpensive, small, and, most importantly, produces high-quality espresso. It also includes a nice steam wand, so you can practice your latte art. This machine offers everything you need to improve your barista abilities at a low cost.


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