17 Best Types Of Coffee Makers, Ranked

The best part of waking up? That's easy, and the jingle is probably already ringing in your head. We love a great cup of coffee, and preparing that first sip has become a near-spiritual experience. Chances are you have a favorite method of preparing coffee too, and it's presumably using a coffee maker you've come to rely upon. You know the perfect amount of ground coffee to water ratio, and you have your favorite additions. Plus, if you're like us, no coffee is quite complete without a fantastic coffee syrup, and a delicious cold foam made using your favorite milk frother.

And while your method is undoubtedly excellent, there are other perfectly wonderful ways to prepare coffee. Some require a little pushing, others need a little patience, and others allow you to brew your coffee and let it sit until you're ready for it. No matter how you prepare it, we've come to look forward to our daily jolt of java, but we have noticed that some coffee makers yield better results than others.

17. Drip

Turn on any television show that spends significant time in a workplace, and you'll see this popular brewing method in a break room or by the water cooler. No office comedy or police drama is complete without this detail. Drip coffee is easy and convenient; plus, for coffee fans who enjoy multiple cups each day, drip coffee also allows you to prepare coffee to have on hand. When your coffee has a warming plate underneath, as many diner coffee pots do, you can enjoy warm coffee throughout the day, but this isn't recommended for the best coffee flavor and consistency.

As popular as this method is, you may be surprised to learn that drip coffee is a newer brewing method compared to others, as Coffee Affection explains. Sir Benjamin Thompson invented drip brewing in the 1780s. Without disposable filters, however, this method didn't have the similarity it does today because disposable drip coffee filters didn't come out until Melitta Bentz invented them in 1908.

While drip coffee is reliable and relatively easy, it is also rather dull. It may get the job done, but so many coffee brewing methods offer different ways to customize your coffee.

16. Thermal

While drip is a common method to brew coffee, it can also lead to a big mistake that could have you using your coffee maker all wrong. When you need to have your coffee sit out for an extended period of time, please resist the urge to place it on the heating area and then forget about it. This could result in coffee that is thick and even sludgy. Instead, opt for a thermal coffee machine that is intended to keep your coffee piping hot until the extract moment you want it. That way, the coffee can sit for much longer after it has been brewed and will still taste and feel fresh.

Simply put, thermal coffee makers keep your coffee warmer for longer, but that's just about the only benefit they have over typical drip coffee makers. We like that thermal makers can help keep an office in good coffee, but we think you can do better for your home coffee maker.

15. Percolator

Coffee percolators are old-fashioned coffee makers dating back to the late 1880s. On the top, you'll put your coffee grounds, and the water hangs out in the bottom like a vacuum coffee maker. However, unlike a vacuum coffee maker, when hot enough, the water rains down on the grounds, saturating them and brewing up that coffee. Your coffee will be ready between 7 and 10 minutes.

This nostalgic coffee maker brews a strong cup of coffee, but because the water is so incredibly hot, the coffee can also become a little burnt. We've also noticed that the coffee can lose some more nuanced flavors in the robust finish. For these reasons, this is not our favorite brewing method. We love the science behind how the coffee is actually made and the old-fashioned nature of the brew, but to get coffee that tastes the best it can, the percolator isn't going to be the best option.

14. Grind and Brew

If you love drip coffee, you probably already know how much more delicious freshly ground beans make your coffee taste. The pre-ground stuff will get the job done, but it will be a different quality in flavor than if you grind it yourself. Unfortunately, this can also take a fair amount of time and even become a bit of a nuisance. Generally, you want your coffee process to be simple in the morning — enter the grind and brew coffee maker.

These machines take all the extra grinding out of your hands and can still create delicious, consistent coffee that is ultra-fresh. There are several types of grind and brew coffee machines to choose from. The Coffee Maven recommends paying attention to three critical factors as you choose: the actual grinder quality, the bean hopper, and the kind of carafe into which your coffee drips. Some grinders make a much better grinder for beans than others, and the burr grinder would be an ideal choice for this type of coffee maker. When checking out the bean hopper, ensure it includes a rubber gasket enclosing the rim for a seal that will definitely keep the beans fresh. Finally, decide how long your coffee will need to stay warm after brewing. If you intend to enjoy it right away, get a glass carafe. Need to wait a little longer? Choose a machine with a thermal carafe.

13. Single-Serve Capsule

While pour-over coffee makers have minimalism on lock, single-serve coffee makers, like the Keurig coffee brewer, couldn't be easier to use. Though there are many different uses for your Keurig, its intended purpose produces a pretty good cup of coffee. To use this coffee maker, you'll open the holder for your pod, close it, and press the buttons you need to begin the process. Keurig and Nespresso are two great coffee pod makers, each offering wide varieties for your use.

Keurig coffee makers come in various sizes, colors, and price points. However, they all work similarly with single pods of many different varieties of your favorite beverage available. In addition to coffee, you can also brew tea, hot chocolate, and even apple cider. Nespresso machines come, primarily, in two different categories: original and vertuo. Original machines use espresso pods to brew espresso-strength coffee. Vertuo machines, on the other hand, brew espresso, as well as more traditional coffee you might find from a Keurig.

We love the versatility of the pod system, and Nespresso machines have also made the ultimate latte experience easily accessible with reasonable price points compared to other espresso machines. However, pod systems can also be quite wasteful and a little cumbersome if brewing for many people.

12. Pour-Over

The pour-over coffee maker may just take the cake when it comes to minimalism. For this simplistic brewing method, also known as a coffee cone, you'll gather only four basic pieces of supplies: a mug for holding your delicious bean juice, a filer, a filter cone, and, of course, ground-up coffee of your choosing.

Though it may be minimalistic, there are some aspects you're going to need to pay special attention to. For one, be sure that water is between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. Next, check that you are using the correct grind of coffee. Because this can vary, note what your specific coffee maker asks for. You'll also want to ensure that you choose a mug that will fit all the coffee you're brewing, so nothing gets wasted.

There are many different types of pour-over makers, but the reason we prefer them to other makers has everything to do with aesthetics. Quite simply, they're prettier. Even still, there's a lot of prep you may need to do with heating water and grinding beans.

11. Costa Rican Chorreador

For a delicious coffee maker rich in nostalgia and character, check out the chorreador, a beloved way to make Costa Rica's coffee. The coffee maker itself operates somewhat similarly to a pour-over coffee maker. A chorreador is a manual coffee maker with a wooden base and a cloth filter bag held by a ring. To use it, place your mug below the bag, fill the bag with your coffee grounds of choice, and pour hot water into the bag. Your coffee will filter through straight into your mug as it might with pour-over coffee.

We love this lovely method for its ease of use, beauty, and lack of plastic waste. However, since it is all manual, you'll also need to find a way to procure hot water for your coffee and, of course, grind the coffee. Some additional equipment will ultimately be necessary, but if you've got the space and time, it's worth it.

10. French Press

Check out the French press for a coffee experience that may remind you of brewing tea. Like the pour-over coffee, the setup for these is simple: coarse ground coffee and a carafe with a plunger and mesh filter. There is a wide variety of French presses available for purchase, but they all include the carafe, plunger, and filter. To brew, you'll fill your carafe with the recommended amount of hot water and course, ground coffee. Allow that to steep, and then slowly press down the plunger so the coffee grounds move to the bottom. Then, pour and enjoy.

When visiting an upscale restaurant, you'll often see a press pot on the menu. We recommend this for brunch because it adds something a little extra. We love this brewing method because it is simplistic, not wasteful, and pleasing to look at. Plus, you can purchase a French press travel mug that will have you enjoying your coffee from the same vessel in which you brewed it. When you're done with the coffee grounds, they also make the perfect addition to your compost pile. However, like pour-over, everything is manually done here, and if you are new to brewing, it may be a little overwhelming.

9. Clever Dripper

Coffee lovers are relentless in their search for the best cup of coffee using the finest brewing methods. A less-known coffee maker called the clever coffee dripper combines the best parts of pour-over coffee makers and French presses into one innovative device.

Just like your French press, which calls for steeping coffee, the clever dripper has you pour grounds into a filter and then steep them in hot water. Then, after your preferred amount of time, you'll release the stopped valve to unleash the steeped coffee. This allows you to enjoy coffee brewed to your strength (and without the grounds in your brew), leaving you with the perfect cup of coffee.

We should note that there are many different varieties of the clever dripper out there with several styles you can choose from. Some are certainly more attractive than others, but they all fundamentally do the same job.

8. AeroPress

Think of this as the French press' older sister. An AeroPress coffee maker creates a cup similar in richness to espresso. Like the French press, an AeroPress uses a carafe and plunger to brew a great cup of coffee. However, you'll opt for a finer grind instead of using course ground coffee. One of the primary differences between these two brewing methods is the purpose of the plunger. The French press plunger's main job is to filter the grounds from the water, but the AeroPress plunger is actually applying a fair amount of pressure that helps pull out the flavor even more than a French press can.

Any coffee maker with its own worldwide championship will be great in our book. The World AeroPress Championship began in 2008 to create a community around this fabulous breeding method and brewing the best of the best. Plus, this rather simplistic and powerful device allows you to brew any strength, from regular coffee to espresso and cold brew.

7. Moka Pot

If espresso-strength coffee is important to you, you'll love the Moka pot. These handy coffee makers combine convenience, a small footprint, and a much lower cost. Though it does produce an espresso-like coffee, Moka pot coffee isn't technically coffee due to the lower amount of pressure present during the brewing process. Moka pot coffee will not have the characteristic crema espresso does. Even still, this coffee maker has remained basically the same since 1933 when they were invented.

While it's not true espresso, it is excellent coffee that has the incredible ability to be brewed nearly anywhere, and that is one of the reasons we love this coffee maker so much. Going camping? Don't forget your Moka pot. Love a great, strong coffee in the morning before work? Your Moka pot is the perfect device. Our only complaint is that it offers little personalization and no high-tech feel.

6. Cold Brew

Most methods of coffee produce a cup much faster than cold-brewed coffee, but with a bit of forethought, this delicious beverage could be ready for you any time. To make a bold cold brew, take out your favorite pitcher and add four tablespoons of ground coffee with four cups of cold water, then put it in your fridge. Allow that mixture to steep. While there are different opinions on how long you should allow your cold brew to steep, we recommend at least 18 hours. After that time, strain your cold brew into another pitcher and put it back in the fridge. Now it's ready to use whenever you like.

While you do not need a specific type of vessel for making cold brew, some make it a little easier. The Rumble Jar, for example, uses a mason jar and a separate piece to hold your grounds. The Toddy Cold Brew System creates a concentrate of cold brew to make it last even longer. Most people, however, just use a large pitcher to steep it and then strain that cold brew it into a storage vessel.

5. Espresso

Perhaps the most elite of the coffee machines is the espresso machine. While these robust coffee makers are a far cry from the drip coffee you can get at the corner diner, espresso machines are also some of the most expensive coffee machines you'll find.

When determining what kind of espresso machine you want, you should consider the price point you're willing to keep, the types of drinks you hope to make, and even where you'll put the machine in your kitchen. This isn't the type of small appliance you'll be able to stow away when you're done with it because many of these coffee makers are larger in size.

One of our favorite parts about an espresso machine is its sheer versatility. And if you are a regular Starbucks devotee, you may begin paying off the machine quicker than you expect. Being able to whip up your favorite lattes at home will certainly decrease the number of times you visit the coffee giant, or any coffee shop for that matter. That said, we are impressed with the Nespresso machine's ability to produce high-quality espresso, and that comes at a much lower price.

4. Steeped

Sometimes, you need an entirely portable option to bring with you on trips or have handy during outdoor adventures or other travel experiences. It may not be reasonable to bring along gadgets that make coffee, and this would leave any coffee lover feeling a little uneasy. Thankfully, there are wonderful options that make great coffee, are entirely portable, and are better for the environment. Welcome to a whole new world of steeping your coffee.

Vlogger Emma Chamberlain's coffee company, Chamberlain Coffee, offers satchels of single-serve coffee you steep in hot water to enjoy your favorite beverage. As long as you've got some way to boil water, you're all set. It doesn't get much easier than that. The affordability and convenience of this product are nearly unbeatable. If you love exploring new coffee options, we highly recommend giving this one a try — especially if you've got a camping trip coming up soon.

3. Turkish

When visiting a Turkish restaurant, one of our must-order items isn't a food dish, it's a drink: Turkish coffee. We love this kind of coffee for its strength and unique brewing method. Like a French press coffee maker, Turkish coffee brewing uses immersion to brew coffee. But while a French press uses a plunger to help mitigate the number of grounds you'll drink in your coffee, Turkish coffee keeps those grounds right in the drink. As a result, your coffee can become stronger while you enjoy it.

We love this type of coffee brewing for how special it feels. Each cup comes with a whole history of the Turkish coffee tradition, and if you enjoy strong coffee, this will probably be one of your favorites too. We should note that the coffee grounds may feel off-putting to some, but this acquired taste won't take long for you to fall in love with.

2. Vietnamese

Vietnamese coffee is a relatively new type of coffee, only really beginning to gain popularity in the 1980s. However, after Vietnam became a massive coffee exporter, the culture around this type of coffee began to grow. To prepare Vietnamese coffee, you'll need a "phin." This device sits atop your favorite coffee-drinking vessel and filters out your coffee.

Since Vietnamese coffee is a little more bitter than other types, it is common to mix it with sweetened condensed milk. Even though you will use hot water with your phin, you can still add ice. For a traditional drink called a "cà phê sữa da," put sweetened condensed milk at the bottom of your cup, add the phin on top to add your coffee, stir it up, and add some ice.

If you'd love the taste of a classic Vietnamese coffee but would prefer to have it steeped, you have to check out Cooper Cow. This company takes the delicious tradition of sweetened condensed milk and great coffee and makes it easy to make and sustainable.

1. Siphon

The award for the most beautiful coffee brewing technique belongs to the siphon, or vacuum brewer. Something like a mix of a pour-over and the French press machine, this unique coffee brewing method was invented in the 1830s and produces a smoother coffee that you're sure to love. This coffee magic happens in three different areas. Water hangs out at the bottom of the machine, and the grounds of your favorite coffee will be on top. The machine's heating element heats up that lower part, bringing water to the grounds to produce that delicious coffee.

Though you can undoubtedly purchase a siphon for your home, we recommend leaving this one for the fun cafe experience. After all, there are more accessible and less fussy ways to enjoy your coffee. But we still love this kind of coffee maker for its lovely novelty and how beautifully it produces a cup of joe.