More and more, authentic coffee lovers are trying to take the wheel and follow their own guts to get the high quality coffee servings, specially at home with no professionals involved. While espresso machines are the top of the chain, you will often bump into coffee makers with grinders, which are a great evolution of regular coffee machines. People who don’t have a lot of expertise preparing coffee or are looking for something more fit to their budgets will benefit a lot of this kind of machine.
With a good array of automated settings, carafe options, excellent grinders that are match to many espresso machines grinders, you can make great use of coffee makers with grinders to prepare superior coffees compared to drip machines and other conventional preparations.
We compiled a list with five of the best coffee makers with grinders for you, and you can also check our guide to choose the best of these machines and understand why these models are here and how you can pick the best for your own needs.
Best Coffee Maker with Grinder 2017
Breville BES870XL Barista Express
This Breville coffee maker with grinder is a semi automatic model with a compact and somehow more traditional approach: there are no digital interfaces, even though the functioning of the machine happens through digital controls. The Barista Express offers a more traditional system, all its controls are adjusted manually, like the settings for grinding coffee, or the options to serve espressos, which are single buttons – single or double serve options. The Barista Express has only one limitation regarding settings, the adjustment of temperature, but that is not to say it is a limitation of performance. This coffee maker with grinder is developed to work brewing a traditional espresso, doing so with what is considered the standard temperature for the ideal espresso, (200ºF or 93ºC). This standard temperature Breville says you can, actually, change adjusting the thermocoil inside the machine, but this is something for people skilled on that matter and requires you to disassemble the machine.
Another nice feature of this machine is the cleaning program to wash the grinding cradle. The machine will actually let you know when the process should run as a LED indicator bulb will light up. While this cleaning requires you to attach the cradle to the steam input screw, the process happens on its own after started. Breville also includes with the machine a complementary cleaning kit with brushes.
DeLonghi ESAM3300 Magnifica
DeLonghi has a lot of robust espresso machines, several of them belong to the Magnifica series. This Magnifica though is a more compact build, even though compact, it still works perfectly as a coffee maker with grinder and doesn’t cost as much as other more complex DeLonghi espresso machines. Like the Breville, it has many manual controls, which makes it more affordable but not limited.
For the espresso serving, you can control the amount of coffee brewed with a rotary button, and the same goes for the grinding fineness. To select single or double servings, the machines enables two different pressing buttons.
As most DeLonghi machines, the difference here from the Breville is the presence of automated recipes, in the case of this Magnifica, you can brew cappuccinos with the Cappuccinos System, which will froth and add milk automatically to the brewed espresso. The frothing wand by the way also comes with a regulating rotary button to control how much steam/pressure you want to apply to the milk.
Cuisinart DGB-900BC Grind & Brew
This Cuisinart coffee machine with grinder is one of the most automated models of our list. Cuisinart often does very cute and good looking machines, it is not exactly the case of this one, but what they ditch in colors and cuteness here, they compensate in great program settings. This DGB model can be set to grind and brew the coffee at some specific time during the day, or even perform one or another of the functions separately.
On the other hand, you have to set the preferences for grinding, serving and amount of coffee beforehand as the machine will not adjust these settings automatically. They were implemented by Cuisinart as manual controls, rotary buttons like the DeLonghi machine.
But the big difference of this coffee maker with grinder is the fact it works like a coffee carafe machine. Instead of serving espressos on cups, you can brew up to 12 cups of coffee at once and keep it warm inside this double-wall carafe container for continuous servings. The coffee hopper holds up to half a pound of beans, so is a lot of coffee in fact that can be brewed at the strongest flavor.
Breville BDC650BSS Grind Control
This second Breville machine of our list is a simpler model compared to the Barista Express, but it resembles a lot the Cuisinart machine. This is one more option to brew a lot of coffee at once, as this coffee maker with espresso also works as a carafe brewer machine, with the grinder built-in. Optionally, you can attach a tall coffee mug or even proper espresso cups or glasses. You can freely control the amount of coffee you will brew. The carafe that is included in the package with the machine has a capacity for up to 12 cups.
Also differently from that traditional system, this coffee machine with grinder has digital controls, including the grinding fineness that you can adjust up to 8 different options. There is also an option to fill in the hopper with pre-ground coffee for those guilty days where you don’t have good coffee beans and will instead stick to grocery pre-ground powder.
Since it includes a digital control set, you can also program this machine to brew coffee at a predetermined time.
Capresso TS CoffeeTeam 465
The last coffee maker with grinder of our list is this Caspresso machine. Like Cuisinart, this brand also has a lot of compact and cute models, though more compact than beautiful. This model in particular is very fit to small kitchens, as it can easily be placed anywhere over a counter. On the other hand, what really matters here, the capacity of the machine to brew espressos.
All its controls are also digital, you can preset the machine for a specific time to start brewing coffee while you also have the option to pause the process midway. Like our last two models, this machine also has a carafe system, actually, two carafe systems: you can either purchase the version with the stainless steel carafe or the glass carafe, noting that the former has a double wall construct, so much better to keep the coffee warm for longer. After 2 hours, the machine will automatically shut off to save energy.
As it is the most accessible of the machines of our list, it has its limitations compared to other coffee makers with grinder: its grinding options are more limited compared to other machines, you have up to 5 different options of fineness to grind your coffee beans, the same goes for the amount of coffee you can brew, up to 5 different measures. The max. capacity of brewing for this machine is up to 10-cups for the carafe. When it comes to strength, the TS 465 offers up to 3 different settings, which is quite good to brew even the strongest espresso.
Coffee Maker with Grinder Buying Guide
What is a coffee maker machine with grinder? What makes it different from other coffee machines?
Sometimes is easy to mistake coffee makers for espresso machines as they are, actually, almost the same, but coffee makers have a limited build and most of them don’t brew espresso but just make a drip coffee. On the other hand, coffee makers with grinder provide espressos with a more limited capacity. They will make use of steam to brew the coffee and also offer the possibility to grind your own beans. As you can see, these machines are often compact and small, so they will not provide a wide array of options when brewing your espresso, specially when it comes to mixing other coffee drink specialties.
Only the top machines of our list provide the espresso crema, as they don’t have as much pressure as espresso machines to extract that much effectively the coffee oils. That’s not to say though that all coffee makers with grinder will have these limitations. In our list we have the compact DeLonghi, which provides automated cappuccino recipes with a good extraction of crema, as well as the Breville Barista.
Coffee makers with grinder also have a modest grinder burr and hopper. While some can grind a respectful amount of beans at once – and we included most of these machines on our list – their burrs are more simple, they can provide good options of grinding fineness but not as much as espresso machines. You will also note that many of them work with carafe systems
What are the benefits of a coffee maker with grinder?
While it seems more obvious to just stick to a espresso machine rather than coffee makers, not everybody has the budget to purchase a good espresso machine. Coffee makers with grinders are a great leap forward from average coffee makers. The price of a great coffee maker with grinder matches the price of an average to regular espresso machine, so the cost benefit here is also another important factor to determine why sometimes is much better to stick with these machines.
Since most of these machines do not make a quite traditional espresso, they can brew much more coffee at once. Many of them come with the carafe system which can be appreciated by families where everybody is just looking for a good cup of coffee daily rather than fancy espresso servings.
For last, coffee makers with grinders are mostly quite automated. Even if they are not digitally automated, they still provide controls that enable a quite customized coffee under the limitations of the machine, but will be much simpler to brew coffee than average drip coffee machines, since you can set up the machine to start working at a predetermined moment of the day.
What should I look for on the best coffee maker with grinder?
- Automated Services: coffee makers with grinders can be a complex leap if you are not very skilled preparing coffee, because they will require from you much more than just throwing preground coffee and water on the tank. Coffee makers are not, on the other hand, as complex as espresso machines, but even the latter are mostly automated to make your life easy. If this is supposed to be your first coffee maker with grinder, stick to models that you can prepare your coffee with few pushing on buttons. They are a good training station for people who are interested in the future to migrate to barista machines, but as coffee makers, they are excellent and can be a bit too much for neophytes, so the possibility of programming the machine to brew automatically, as well as a more simple setup to adjust coffee grinding will make your more intimate of your coffee machine faster.
- Customization: Speaking of automation, whether the machine is a coffee maker, espresso machine, coffee maker with grinder or any other kind of coffee machine, is always essential that you can make benefit from a wide array of options when the matter is brewing coffee, including strength customization, servings, amount of coffee and, of course, the grinding settings. When your coffee maker with grinder offers a comprehensive set of options, you can brew many different kinds of coffee to suit your needs, depending on your mood, what you are up to, and of course, for the taste of your guests. Also, this versatility enables your machine to prepare coffee from many different kinds of coffee beans, as they will not all work well with the same kind of method.
- Stainless steel: The more of this material in the build of your coffee maker with grinder, the better. Stainless steel is the best to preserve the taste of a good brewed coffee as well as to clean them well afterwards. All coffee machines operate with high temperatures, so you want some material that is resilient to that temperature oscillation, as after some years of use, plastic can easily degrade. This also goes for stainless steel tanks and baskets, burr and hopper.
How to brew a good cup of coffee with a coffee maker with grinder?
High-quality beans: You can spend a good money on a great coffee maker with grinder, but you will surely be wasting the investment if you are going to make use of cheap grocery preground coffee. As these machines will not provide the traditional espresso, you will be already getting a coffee that is not as outstanding as the ones provided by professional baristas. To compensate, you need good coffee beans to grin and brew. Is important to note that, even if you can’t extract a crema rich espresso with these machines, high quality coffee makes all the difference. You will still get a tasty flavored extraction.
Keeping it Warm: Is no mindless rituals when you see barista professionals placing cups and mugs nearby the espresso machine, neither is it for decoration purposes. An ideal coffee must be brewed and served at the same temperature. The longer it sits around in the ambient, the more it loses heat and flavor. While the coffee is being brewed, is important to do not conflict with the temperature, so keep the mug, cups or carafe already preheated. You can do that washing it with hot water while the beans are being ground. Do it specially with the carafe, as it is a large structure and it will steal a lot of the coffee heat if it is not already hot. Cups and mugs can be easily heated, as well as they will easily lose heat, so you can let hot water sit inside them until the extraction process starts to pour out. While it seems all too much, this is quite important specially in cold seasons and cold countries, once again, baristas don’t do this kind of rituals mindlessly.
Follow guidelines: Is important to know before you purchase a specific coffee ground it your coffee maker with grinder will be able to process it. Some coffee types are really just specific for espresso machines, not to mention that most of these machines don’t work with preground coffee, so this is an option that is not either most of the times available. You can always try and test at your own risk, but when it comes to grinding and brewing coffee, working clueless often leads to bad results and waste of money invested on the good beans. Check the specifications of the coffee variation to know if the machine can grind it properly – the degree of fineness – as well as pressure output, temperature and so on.
Coffee makers with grinders are a much better option to brew coffee when you don’t have the budget for fancy espresso machines and is tired of regular drip coffee. These machines are quite affordable and you can use intact coffee beans to grind just in time, saving the flavors and strength.
As you can see, these machines are a good introduction to the espresso world, as they will offer many automated services and will help you out learning the basics of processing. Bear in mind the tips of this guide if you are interested in expanding your options on machines that are not included in this guide as a good coffee maker with grinder can’t really miss these features you have just seen.