Title: Best Espresso Machine Under 200 Dollars – Your Affordable Way into the Barista World!
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- https://www.amazon.com/Nespresso-Vertuo-Espresso-Machine-DeLonghi/dp/B01MCYAFODBest Espresso Machine Under 200 Dollars – Your Affordable Way into the Barista World!
As a coffeeholic, your highest mission in life should be finding the best cup. Here’s the thing; coffee makers, especially espresso machines, can be pretty expensive, which may come as a huge turnoff if you’re trying to become the barista of the century without breaking the bank.
Worry not though, as we hear you and understand your needs, and that’s why we compiled the best espresso machine under 200 bucks list. Go with any of these machines, and you’ll impress your in-laws and friends with your delicious espresso shots in no time.
Without further ado, let’s help you find the best Espresso Machine Under 200 dollars for your kitchen!
Klarstein Passionata 20 Espresso Maker
Right off the bat is the Passionata 20 Espresso Maker, which, despite its price tag, will definitely give you the bang for your buck for the features it offers. Klarstein’s coffee machine reflects the genius of German engineering, making it a personal favorite for thousands of home baristas. Why wouldn’t it be, knowing that packs excellent construction, solid build, and easy maneuverability, all in a perfectly-sized stainless steel casing measuring 15.4 x 14.6 x 10.6 inches in size and weighing 8 pounds, which gives it the edge over its plastic counterparts.
Using the Klarstein Passionata is a breeze. It’s easy to operate; just fill the portafilter, which includes the option for single or double shot sizes, using the integrated grinder, then either turn the dial right for frothing or left for expresso. No fancy buttons, no weird automation, just straight out good coffee that you can enjoy with your family, making this machine an excellent choice and potentially the best espresso machine under 200 bucks for households.
Furthermore, this espresso machine features a self-priming operation, which reduces the time needed for brewing and eliminates the wait between shots, and an ESE filter, which adds to the rapidity of the brewing.
Besides the basic features, the Klarstein Passionata packs a plethora of extra functionalities, including a high-end stainless-steel boiler with 20-bar pump pressure for a genuine expresso experience, a steam nozzle for a rich and creamy froth for your lattes and cappuccinos, and a large 43-ounce water reservoir that can hold enough for up to six cups at once.
Overall, the Klarstein Passionata 20 Espresso Maker definitely wins the title of the best espresso machine under 200 bucks, all thanks to its durable construction, useful features, and quiet operations.
- Compact size and solid stainless-steel construction
- Quick heat up time and a quiet operation
- Large water 43-ounce water container
- The portafilter and group basket construction includes some plastic
Nespresso Pixie Original Espresso Machine by Breville
When it comes to convenience, nothing can beat a Nespresso machine. No need to learn how to brew coffee or how to prepare a cup from scratch, just pop an espresso pod in the Nespresso super automatic espresso machine, turn it on, wait for a few seconds, and you’re good to go with your day. Yes, you read that right. Just a few seconds, as this little beat can heat water to perfect brewing temperature in 25 seconds.
The Pixie machine isn’t only convenient, but it’s also aesthetically-appealing, with a modern chrome design and a compact size of 12-3/4 x 4-3/4 x 9-3/4 inches, for a construction that’s superior to the traditional conception of espresso machines. Despite its small size, the Nespresso Pixie machine packs a 19-bar pressure pump, which means that every coffee granule will be stripped off of all flavor. Furthermore, it comes with a 24-ounce water reservoir that can hold enough water for a couple of cups, which reduces the refilling time to some extent.
A feature that we really dig about the Pixie machine is the heat-resistant panel, which allows you to place the machine on top of the pod drawer without worrying about sagging or ruining the capsules stored below.
Sadly, there’s no frother in this machine so you cannot steam milk for a cappuccino or a latté using it.
Now, although the machine itself is pretty good and represents a solid candidate for the title of the best espresso machine under 200 bucks, the expresso pods themselves are a bit pricey.
Nevertheless, if you’re looking for a machine that can offer a hands-free, automated process that doesn’t require you to grind, temp, and extract your beans yourself, the Nespresso Pixie machine is an excellent coffee maker to consider.
- Modern chrome design with a heat-resistant panel
- Convenient and automated
- Easy to operate
- The espresso capsules are expensive
Capresso EC100 Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
The Nespresso Pixie isn’t the only convenient machine in town, as the Capresso EC100 espresso machine offers similar performance, at a lower price, making it potentially the best espresso machine under 200 dollars.
First things first; the looks. The Capresso EC100 sports a pretty sleek design, with a light 9-pound weight point and an eye-catchy silver and black color scheme that would appeal to anyone visiting your kitchen, even your critiques and in-laws.
Capresso’s EC100 Espresso and Cappuccino Machine features stainless steel lined ThermoBlock heating system with a 15-bar pressure. Together, they can offer a seamless and quick espresso experience that’s hard to rival. Remember that flavorful, rich espresso your old Joe used to make? Well, that’s exactly what you can make with the Capresso EC100 espresso machine, with either pre-ground coffee or espresso pods. Even if you’re a novice barista, you can still make pretty good shots thanks to the EC100’s pressurized sieves.
Furthermore, coupled with the swivel frother and two sieves, the ThermoBlock can produce some of the thickest crema that we’ve ever seen, which adds to the great taste of espresso shots made with this machine. Not only that, but thanks to the frothing wand and unlimited steam output of the EC100, even cappuccino lovers can get a piece of the cake when using this machine, as they can control the final texture of the espresso however they may.
Another unique feature of the Capresso EC100 is the Auto Rinse feature, which keeps the brewing temperature constant as the machine works on making your espresso shots.
Finally, if you dread spending hours cleaning your appliance, you’ll certainly like the Capresso EC100 as it comes with a plethora of features that make cleaning up an effortless task, including a detachable robust warming platform, a large 46-ounce water reservoir, and a drip tray. Quite convenient, isn’t it?
- Heats pretty quickly
- Easy to maintain and clean
- Allows for different thicknesses and tastes
- No stainless steel cup for milk, unfortunately.
Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine by Breville
Breville is among the big players in the coffee machine industry, and customers have nothing but kind words to say about the brand. Why? Because it offers excellent quality at really competitive prices, which is something that would appeal to anyone, wouldn’t it?
The Nespresso Vertuo espresso machine offers nothing but top quality, with a slim profile and a sleek, modern design that would definitely add a nice touch to your kitchen. No surprises here, though, as that’s the case for all Nespresso machines.
Although this espresso maker is pretty similar to the Nespresso Pixie reviewed above, there are a few differences between the two, mainly the capsules used. Breville has its own take on the matter and uses the Vertuo line of pods rather than the original one.
As far as the espresso shots themselves go, this machine can brew five different single coffee sizes: 1.35-ounce Espresso, 2.7-ounce Double Espresso, 7.7-ounce Coffee, 5-ounce Gran Lungo, and 14-ounce Alto. The good news? All of that can be done at the touch of a button. Quite convenient, if you ask me. I mean, who wants to keep tackling settings and parameters anyway, right?
The convenience doesn’t end there, though, as this machine uses Nespresso’s CentrifusionTM technology. What does that mean for you, the barista? It means that you don’t need to do anything to get the perfect shot and crema for large coffee. Just scan the barcode on the capsule and the Vertuo will take care of the rest. Talk about hands-free operation, huh?
The Nespresso Vertuo Coffee also comes with a 40-ounce water reservoir, which is more than enough for all your espresso shots throughout the day, and a milk frother that does the job right, both when it comes to warming and frothing the milk.
For freebie lovers, Breville offers a Nespresso Vertuo capsule welcome kit with each unit. The package includes 12 coffee capsules, each of which has a unique aroma profile, so you can decide which works for you and suits your taste before spending a penny.
With all its intuitive features, durable construction, sleek, modern design, and 40-ounce water container, the Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine by Breville checks off all the boxes for a home barista looking for an effortless and tasteful experience. We have the Vertuo ranked here, however, because of its higher price and lack of versatility compared to the Nespresso Pixie from the same manufacturer.
- Can produce five types of coffee
- Comes with a pretty efficient pod ejection system
- The milk frother does a great job of frothing and warming the milk
- The pods are not the cheapest around, but they’re worth the price if you’re a true coffeeholic
Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo Coffee and Espresso Machine by De’Longhi
Nope, that’s not a déjà vu you’re experiencing. This is indeed another Vertuo espresso machine, but from a different manufacturer, which is De’Longhi, another big brand in the coffee making industry.
No need to go through the same details over and over again. The Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo offers the same features as Breville’s unite, but with a larger, 54-ounce water container. It even comes with the same complimentary gift offered with Breville’s Nespresso machine.
Although the features are similar, De’Longhi’s Vertuo is cheaper than both the Pixie and the Nespresso Vertuo from Breville, but that does come with a catch, as it’s also less versatile. Nevertheless, if you want to get top-notch quality without blowing a hole in your wallet, this is a solid option to consider.
- Large 54-ounce water container
- Affordable and comes with a welcome gift
- Pretty good coffee with five supported types
- Only the Vertuo line capsules are supported
Picking the Best Espresso Machine under 200 Bucks: Buying Guide and F.A.Q
Are you looking for a good home espresso machine but don’t have the money to buy a fancy one? Well, we’ve got you covered, we know that money doesn’t exactly grow on trees, and it can be hard to choose both a decent and cheap espresso machine.
We’ll be discussing what to look for in a home espresso machine and what factors to consider when buying one. However, keep in mind that your choice pool won’t be anything fancy. Most, if not all, home espresso machines that are cheaper than $200 are entry-level.
Before we go any deeper, let us first tell you about the three main categories you’ll be looking at when buying an espresso machine. There are manual, semi-automatic, and automatic espresso machines. In this article, we’ll be focusing on the semi-automatic ones as they usually offer the best value in the price range we’re in.
You’ll find that espresso machines under $200 tend to be simple. They brew espresso by using steam mil and a portafilter with the attached steam wand. You have the choice between buying coffee that’s pre-ground which is specifically made for espresso; or getting a grind, which is what we recommend.
Are Capsule Espresso Machines Good?
Capsule machines are another type of espresso makers. Although they’re not generally recommended, if you’re looking for something under $200, then it’s an option worth exploring.
Capsule machines are good in that they don’t require a grinder, are pretty cheap, and are very easy to use. However, the reason we don’t recommend them is that they’re not such a wise long term investment as the capsules aren’t that cost-efficient, nor are they good for the environment.
What’s the Difference Between Espresso and Latté Machines?
Knowing what you want to get out of your machine is probably just as important as the process of buying it. Ask yourself whether you want to make lattes or cappuccinos and whether you want an espresso machine that requires little user interference or one that will require you to be aware of the process of brewing coffee.
Keep in mind that in the less than $200 price range, the majority of espresso machines are more automated due to the fact that they come with a pressurized portafilter. However, there are a few models with both a pressurized portafilter and a traditional one for the people who want to brew their coffee to the last detail.
Also, watch out for shoddy machines that are fragile. The path to the best value espresso machine is riddled with knock-off ones that are fragile. Be careful before you purchase an espresso machine, and do your research on the company that makes it. Be sure to only buy from trusted and reliable companies.
How to Choose the Best Type for Your Needs?
When it comes to coffee machines below the $200 mark, there isn’t a lot of choices to be had. You know what they say, “beggars can’t be choosers.” Anyhow, you’ll be choosing from two types: Either you’ll go with drip brewers or semi-automatic brewers. In order to give you a broader perspective on both machines, let’s put them toe to toe with each other and see what the differences are.
- Cost: The drip brewers win this battle as their simpler mechanism means that they have fewer components, and as such, they cost less than their semi-automatic counterpart.
- Taste: A semi-automatic machine produces coffee that tastes better than its drip counterpart.
- Serve: The good thing about drip brewers is that they can prepare multiple cups at a time as opposed to semi-automatic machines that only make one or two cups at a time.
- Variety: The clear winner here is the semi-automatic machines. This is mainly due to the fact that drip brewers can only make a pot of coffee, while semi-automatic machines offer a wider variety of choice. You can make espresso, lattes, and cappuccinos. However, the options usually defer from model to model, so keep that in mind.
- Usability: Given the simpler mechanism of the drip brewers, they are the winner in this regard as they only have one button, and that’s the power button. However, semi-automatic machines give the user more choice and are, as a result, more complex.
- Control: Semi-automatic machines give the user a lot more control over how the coffee tastes than drip brewers. It shouldn’t come as a surprise given how simple the drip brewers are in comparison.
- Size: This goes to the drip brewer as well. Drip brewers tend to be compact and portable. On the other hand, semi-automatic machines are stationary and cannot be moved without a hassle. They are also bigger than drip brewers.
- Cleaning: When it comes to cleaning, the drip brewer is the clear winner here since fewer parts mean an easier time cleaning than a semi-automatic machine.
To put it as bluntly as possible, you get what you pay for. If you want more choice and better coffee, you need a more complex machine, thus requiring more money. While semi-automatic machines brew better coffee and give you more choice, the cheap cost and simplicity of the drip brewers make them an equally appealing choice that’s worth exploring.
What to Look for in a Semi-Automatic Espresso Machine Under 200 Dollars?
Semi-automatic machines, as the name implies, automate a specific part of the brewing process, and that is the pouring part. Dosing and tamping the portafilter still require manual intervention. With that said, how can we tell an excellent semi-automatic machine from a bad one? Well, let’s break it down to the main factors
- Temperature Control: One of the toughest things to do when brewing manually is to maintain a temperature that’s between 195°F and 205°F. Good semi-automatic machines should be able to easily maintain it thanks to a thermostat that’s built into it.
- Boiler Type: The vast majority of semi-automatic machines that are under $200 come with either a ThermoBlock heating system or a single boiler. The latter is usually more effective in maintaining a stable temperature. However, machines that come with a single brewer typically cost more, so take that into account.
- Steam Wand: A bad steam wand will severely limit the functionality of your semi-automatic machine. You might as well just buy a drip brewer instead, or buy a separate milk frother. However, there are some semi-automatic machines that come with their own automatic milk frothers which are more than a welcome feature.
- Auto-Purging Steam Wand: It’s vital that you remember to always clean and maintain your steam wand after every use to avoid any malfunctions or inconveniences. To prevent yourself from running into this problem, you can buy a semi-automatic machine that comes with an auto-purge system or a purge reminder.
- Programs: Most machines have different presets for each type of drink. The vast majority of these machines also allow you to choose between single or double shot.
- Brew Pressure: 10 bars of pressure is the minimum amount of pressure necessary to make a good espresso. However, good machines will usually produce about 15 bars of pressure.
- Build Quality: The vast majority of models that are below the $200 price tag are mostly made up of plastic. This means that they won’t be as durable as the more expensive models, so keep that in mind and try not to be reckless when using them.
- Size: You need to make sure that you have enough space on your counter for the machine. Keep in mind that they also require some clearance space as they have heating parts.
- Accessories: Buying a semi-automatic machine is usually not enough as you’ll need other accessories like a milk frothing pitcher, a steel tamper, adequate cups, and, in some cases, a grinder.
- Maintenance and Cleaning: Semi-automatic coffee machines require a lot of care. This is crucial if you want to maximize its longevity. Just follow the maintenance schedule provided in the product manual, and you should be fine.
- Warranty: When you buy a 200-buck coffee machine, you should expect at least a year’s warranty. However, if claiming the warranty requires you to cover the shipping charges, then it’s not a good warranty offer.
- Customer Support: If you’re not used to semi-automatic machines, then you’re going to need excellent customer support and service to cover your back in case you find yourself stuck in a rut.
- Service: Before you buy a product, you should check if there are any service centers in your vicinity in case something with the machine goes wrong and needs to be fixed.
In a stressful world where you can’t really get through your evening meetings without a strong espresso shot that’s both delicious and full of energy, it’s essential to find the perfect machine that offers good quality without breaking the bank.
Any of the above recommendations can do that, which means that each of them is a strong candidate for the title of the best espresso machine under 200 bucks for you, so make sure to set your expectations right and determine your needs before taking the leap and making your choice.