Best Espresso Machine Under $200 ~ Buying Guide For 2018

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There’s no denying that regular trips to a café are not ideal for your budget. But what can you do if you are an espresso lover and need your daily fix? The best option is to buy your own espresso making machine and become a homemade barista. Not only does that save you a lot of money but it’s also a good chance for you to get creative and fix different beverages with your own signature style. As convenient and amazing as buying your own espresso machine sounds, it can be quite the disaster if you don’t choose the right machine. There are plenty of different brands of models to choose from and if you do not do your homework, you could end up with an overpriced machine that can barely make a simple cup of coffee.

Before you rush to spend hundreds of dollars on a product, there are a few things you have to consider. Each individual has different tastes and what appeals to another person might not appeal to you. There are, however, some general questions that you need to ask. For starters, are you looking for a basic espresso machine or do you want one that offers more versatility? Do you prefer a smaller or larger machine? How often do you use the machine? While some people only enjoy a drink once in a while, for others, an espresso machine is part of their daily routine. As such, buying a flimsy product that will only last a few months would not be ideal. There are plenty of other factors that you need to consider before buying an espresso machine and taking the time to analyze each one carefully will save you a lot of time and money.

Make the right choice and enjoy each brew with a quality espresso machine.

Features to look out for in a quality espresso machine

Efficiency and convenience

While manual espresso machines are still quite popular, not everyone has the time and some people prefer a machine that brews a cup quickly without lowering the quality of the drink. With that said, automated machines can be a bit too complicated for some. When it comes to picking out the best espresso machine, you have to pay attention to how easy it is to use the machine and how quickly it can make a good cup of espresso. Before you rush to purchase a product, make sure that you understand how the buttons work and if you don’t, that the manual at least does a good job of explaining the functionality and features to you.

Cleaning

Overtime and with constant use, your espresso machine will begin to collect dirt and that could compromise the quality of your drinks. It’s important to take the time to get an idea of how it should be cleaned, what to use for cleaning and which components need special attention. In general, bigger, more complex machines need more cleaning and require more time and effort. If you are not a fan of spending a lot of time cleaning out your espresso machine, then you’d be better off with a simpler, smaller model.

Versatility

Most modern espresso machines can make more than just espresso. If you prefer drinks like cappuccinos, lattes or even coffee then versatility is an important feature on any machine that you buy.  Before you settle on an espresso machine, you have to determine what else it can do. In addition to making different drinks, smaller features such as a milk frother are important too if you enjoy making creative drinks.

Durability

A lot of the higher quality models tend to have a warranty that will act as a gauge of how trustworthy the product is in terms of quality.  Other features like material used to make machine and the reputation of the brand will also help you figure out how long the machine is expected to last and whether or not to trust its quality. Durability is a very important factor to consider before you spend any money on your machine.

Size

Espresso machines can come in huge sizes and if you don’t have enough space in your kitchen, they can be inconvenient. The last thing you want to do, is to do away with other appliances just to make space for one machine. However, a bigger sized machine can make more than one drink at once and if that is something you value to save time, it can be a good investment.

Guru Review Club’s Top 5: Best Espresso Machine Under $200

After doing some thorough research, we have compiled a short list of quality espresso machines that we believe are not only high in quality but affordable as well:

DeLonghi EC702 Stainless Espresso Maker

DeLonghi EC702 15-Bar-Pump Espresso Maker, Stainless

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Take espresso making into your own hands with the DeLonghi Stainless Espresso Maker. This machine makes both espresso and quality cappuccino and allows you to choose between brewing freshly ground espresso or making instant espresso with special serving pods. It comes with a supreme filter, designed to make a crema that even professional baristas would be impressed by. To control the pressure of steam and water, the DeLonghi has two thermostats that ensure that each cup you brew is just hot enough.

For cappuccino lovers, a handy frother is included with a chamber which will mix milk and steam to produce creamy and rich froth for your drinks. This machine is also quite tech advanced and is designed to prime itself so that you don’t have to waste time prepping it and when you are making your beverage, the no-drip feature ensures that your kitchen tops stay clean at all times. The DeLonghi espresso machine is durable, sturdy and is made using the finest stainless steel that promises a long time of quality espresso brewing.

Features we love

  • Automatic self-priming.
  • Dual espresso and cappuccino maker.
  • Dual chamber frother for the perfect cappuccinos.
  • Filter holder that accommodates both ground coffee and espresso pods.
  • Easy to fill, remove and clean water tank.
  • Sturdy and durable build.


10Total Score
Summary:DeLonghi EC702 Stainless Espresso Maker

Stylish, efficient and easy to use, the DeLonghi Stainless Espresso Machine is the perfect choice for espresso lovers looking to make a quick, delicious cup. It is sturdy and made of durable steel, designed to last for several years and includes dual action brewing which allows you to make delicious cappuccinos and espresso.

Customer Reviews
10
Convenience
10
Functionality
10
Durability
10
PROS
  • It has a big, easy to remove, clean and refill the water tank.
  • Accommodates both freshly ground coffee and instant espresso pods.
  • Stylish design made of durable steel that gives it a sturdy and reliable build.
  • Comes with a self-primer feature that reduces your prepping time.
  • Includes a frothing wand to make delicious cappuccinos.
  • Frother has a special chamber that is designed to mix the milk and steam for the perfect, creamy froth.
CONS
  • The brand new machine has a weird taste that taints the quality of your drinks for about the first 6 or so cups.


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Mr. Coffee Café Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker

Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker, Silver

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This particular machine was built for robust and efficient brewing with the simple push of a button. It is quite versatile and can make both cappuccino and espresso in addition to creamy lattes. The pump is designed with 15 bars that create a huge amount of pressure so that every ounce of flavor in your coffee granules is extracted to produce rich and quality drinks. If you are not a coffee making connoisseur then you should consider buying this machine because it has single touch technology that gives you the option between double and single espresso shots and automatically produces froth when you adjust the control knob.

Once you’re done making your latte or cappuccino, you can store whatever milk is left over in the milk reservoir that the machine comes with. This reservoir is safe to store in your refrigerator and won’t cause the milk to spoil so you can always use it again next time. The Café Barista is actually designed to decide how much milk you will need for your chosen drink so you will never use too much milk. To satisfy your passionate inner barista, take a look at the recipe book that is included in the box which contains several unique recipes for you to experiment with.

Features we love

  • The versatile 3-1 system that makes lattes, espresso and cappuccino.
  • Powerful pump system with 15 bars for rich, quality drinks.
  • Hassle free frother that works automatically and decides how much milk is needed to ensure every cup you make is perfect.
  • Handy single touch panel with controls to choose your desired drink.
  • Easy to remove, clean and refill water reservoir.
  • Removable milk reservoir that is safe to store in your fridge and keeps the milk fresh for the next use.


9.8Total Score
Summary: Mr. Coffee Café Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker

Perfect for beginners looking to master homemade coffee brewing, the Café Barista makes your life so much easier with automatic features that ensure that you get to enjoy your favorite drink with just the push of a few buttons. It is versatile and comes with a cool recipe book that will ensure that you save a lot of money and make fewer trips to the coffee house.

Customer Reviews
9.8
Convenience
10
Functionality
9.8
Durability
9.6
PROS
  • Automatic milk frothing feature that determines how much milk needs to be used on your behalf.
  • A versatile machine that makes lattes, cappuccinos, and espresso.
  • Removable milk reservoir that is storable in your refrigerator.
  • Easy to clean and refill the water tank.
  • It makes selecting your desired drink much easier with an efficient control panel.
  • Grounds every grain of coffee with its powerful pump and ensures that every ounce of flavor is extracted.
CONS
  • Not very good for making regular coffee.
  • In the event that certain parts break down and need replacement, they are quite expensive to replace if not purchased from the Mr. Café website.


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DeLonghi Manual Espresso and Cappuccino Machine

This machine is certain to turn your house into a professional coffeehouse. It is compact and small enough to fit well in your kitchen with your other appliances yet powerful enough to make quality espresso and cappuccino. The machine is designed to self-prime so that it always stays ready to make your favorite drink and it is built with a Rapid Cappuccino System that keeps the temperature of your drinks at the optimum level so you can make drink after drink without waiting around. It is the perfect machine if you have company over and would like to make multiple drinks quickly and efficiently.

Another feature that is guaranteed to keep your drinks at the perfect temperature is the dual thermostat system which provides two different thermostats, one for controlling the water pressure and another for controlling the steam pressure. The built in cappuccino system is designed to mix air, milk and steam to create creamy froth every time you make a cup of cappuccino while the 3 in 1 filter system allows you to make single shot, double shot or instant espresso with espresso pods. It’s a clean machine that includes a drip tray to keep all liquids off your counter tops and a water reservoir that you can remove and refill with ease. Making quality espresso and cappuccino is made more convenient with the DeLonghi Machine.

Features we love

  • Metal drip tray to keep liquid off your kitchen top.
  • Self-priming facility to keep the machine ready for brewing at all times.
  • Dual thermostat feature to control the pressure and temperature of water and steam separately for the perfect drink.
  • Convenient cappuccino system which mixes milk, air and steam to make quality, creamy froth for your cappuccinos.
  • Versatile filter holder that accommodates espresso pods and ground coffee for the drink of your choice.
  • Removable and easy to refill water reservoir.


9.6Total Score
Summary:DeLonghi Manual Espresso and Cappuccino Machine

A true embodiment of professional brewing in a compact size, this machine is guaranteed to make espresso and cappuccino making more convenient and fun for you. It is handy if you are looking to entertain some company and serve multiple drinks at once and with its self-primer system, you never have to wait between cups.

Customer Reviews
9.6
Convenience
9.8
Functionality
9.8
Durability
9.2
PROS
  • Compact and small enough to fit in your kitchen with other appliances.
  • Automatically self-primes and stays ready for brewing at all times.
  • Drip tray to keep all liquids off the kitchen top.
  • Dual thermostat control for keeping steam and water at the right temperature.
  • Cappuccino system to mix milk, air, and steam for creamy froth.
  • Filter holder that accommodates espresso pods and ground coffee so you can make the drink of your choice.
CONS
  • Although it is perfect for quality home brewed drinks, it does fall behind compared to bigger, more professional models in terms of versatility.
  • The compact size makes it appear flimsy and not as sturdy as other models.


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DeLonghi Nespresso Inissia Espresso Machine

Nespresso Inissia Espresso Machine by De'Longhi, Black

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Ergonomic, light in weight and compact, the Inissia is a smart espresso machine that is guaranteed to make brewing much easier for you while fitting in well with your other kitchen appliances. It comes in two stylish colors, black and white, and is perfect for any modern kitchen.  Easy to understand and use, it creates quality espresso with each brew with the help of its single touch system and 19 bar pump which guarantees that all of the flavor from your espresso pods is extracted.  All it takes is one simple push of a button and in less than half a minute, you will have water that is hot enough to brew nine cups without the need to stop and refill the water tank.

The enhanced drip tray can be folded to make room for bigger cups and is designed to drop down automatically as soon as you remove the cup so that no liquid spills on the kitchen top. Conscious of the need to save energy, the creators of the Nespresso Inissia also included a feature that turns the machine off automatically if it stays unused for nine minutes. You can also control the volume to ensure that you don’t cause a disturbance when you are making your drinks. The Inissia is a quality brand machine that comes with multiple Nespresso capsules, each with its own unique flavor and aroma for versatile espresso brewing.

Features we love

  • Automatic controls for adjusting the volume of the machine.
  • Energy saving feature that turns the machine off if it is not used for 9 minutes.
  • Adjustable drip tray that caters to bigger cups.
  • Lungo and Espresso buttons which are designed to adjust the cup size so you can have as much espresso as you want.
  • Quick brewing system that guarantees that you can make as many as 9 cups without having to stop and refill the water tank.
  • 19 bar pump to extract maximum flavor from your espresso pods.


9.3Total Score
Summary: DeLonghi Nespresso Inissia Espresso Machine

Light in weight and compact, this machine makes brewing the perfect cup of espresso so much simpler. It comes with adjustable features so you can make bigger cups of your favorite drink and is designed to make up to 9 cups without you having to stop and refill the water tank or readjust the temperature. It’s a convenient machine and is perfect if you are looking to make a simple cup of espresso.

Customer Reviews
9.3
Convenience
9.8
Functionality
9.4
Durability
8.7
PROS
  • Compact size that fits in well with other kitchen appliances.
  • Warms up fast and maintains optimum temperature for up to 9 cups.
  • Comes with an adjustable drip tray to accommodate larger cups.
  • Has automatic controls to adjust volume.
  • Powerful pump that extracts maximum amount of flavor from your espresso pods.
  • Because of its small size, it is relatively easy to clean.
CONS
  • Only works with Nespresso pods and so if you don’t have them, you cannot experiment with other brands and varieties of coffee.
  • It only seems to make espresso and not other types of beverages like lattes and cappuccinos which renders it quite limited.


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Ninja Coffee Bar Brewer

Ninja Coffee Bar Brewer with Glass Carafe (CF080Z)

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For simple and convenient brewing, consider investing in the Ninja Coffee Bar Brewer. It is versatile, easy to use and fits well in any modern kitchen. You can choose from one of four sizes, Full Carafe, Cup, Half Carafe and Travel Mug to make the drink of your choice and from one of four brews, Specialty, Over Ice, Rich and Classic to enjoy a wide variety of beverages that suit your specific tastes. The Ninja maker eliminates the hassle of measuring water or having to refill the tank after each brew with its automatic single touch intelligence that accurately measures water according to the brew type and cup size you choose.

Not planning on drinking your beverage immediately? Then you can take advantage of the warming plate and glass carafe which are designed to keep your drink hot and ready to drink for up to 2 hours. You can also program your machine to start brewing in 24 hours so that by the time you wake up, your beverage is ready to drink. Other handy accessories added to the machine include a frother for making lattes and cappuccinos, a coffee scoop and a recipe book with up to 40 different recipes for you to try out.

Features we love

  • 4 different sizes of cups to choose from.
  • Includes 4 varieties of brews to pick from that include rich and classic.
  • Keeps your drink hot enough to consume for up to 2 hours thanks to the warmer plate and glass carafe.
  • Recipe book with 40 recipes to try out.
  • Automatic setting to start brewing in 24 hours so you wake up to a freshly brewed drink.
  • Single touch intelligent feature that ensures enough water is used for each drink so you don’t have to keep refilling the water reservoir.


9.2Total Score
Summary: Ninja Coffee Bar Brewer

Convenient, simple and versatile, the Ninja Coffee Bar Brewer is an intelligent machine that is designed to keep your drink nice and hot if you choose not to drink it immediately. It also accommodates different cup sizes and can be set accordingly to brew your drink when you are asleep so that you wake up to a hot, fresh cup.

Customer Reviews
9.2
Convenience
9.8
Functionality
9.8
Durability
8
PROS
  • Versatile enough to make different types of drinks from espresso to lattes.
  • Comes with a handy recipe book with different recipes to try out.
  • Includes smart technology designed to automatically brew your drink even if you are asleep.
  • Keeps your drink hot if you are not drinking it.
CONS
  • It is quite difficult to clean and the cleaning light won’t switch off at times.


10 Total Score
Editor’s Choice

Stylish, efficient and easy to use, the DeLonghi Stainless Espresso Machine is the perfect choice for espresso lovers looking to make a quick, delicious cup. It is sturdy and made of durable steel, designed to last for several years and includes dual action brewing which allows you to make delicious cappuccinos and espresso.

Convenience
10
Functionality
10
Durability
10
PROS
  • It has a big, easy to remove, clean and refill the water tank.
  • Accommodates both freshly ground coffee and instant espresso pods.;
  • Stylish design made of durable steel that gives it a sturdy and reliable build.
  • Comes with a self-primer feature that reduces your prepping time.
  • Includes a frothing wand to make delicious cappuccinos.
  • Frother has a special chamber that is designed to mix the milk and steam for the perfect, creamy froth.
CONS
  • The brand new machine has a weird taste that taints the quality of your drinks for about the first 6 or so cups.
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Paul Davis

Paul Davis is the resident expert on Home & Tools for the Guru Review Club. Paul has over 15 years experience working for major retailers including The Home Depot and Wal-Mart. Paul has a passion for great products and always looking for the next best gadget for your home.

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