If you sometimes enjoy a nice pot of drip coffee, but other times you want to relax to a luscious cup of latte or cappuccino, having a machine that does them both would be a great convenience to you.
As we all know, espresso and coffee are totally different brews. Espresso, this rich shot of coffee, requires high pressure to be made. An espresso maker usually have a 15-bar pressure pump to operate. On the other hand, drip coffee does not require this type of high pressure.
A combo espresso and coffee maker has two sides, one for drip coffee and another for espresso, giving you access to both kind of coffee brews.
How To Pick a Combo Espresso and Coffee Maker:
When doing your research, you’ll find that many machines are labeled as ‘combo’ coffee makers, but actually aren’t. Well, while they can technically create specialty coffee drinks, they don’t necessarily do it the authentic way. Not all combo coffee makers have the high pressure pump needed to make an authentic shot of espresso. Instead, they just make a concentrated coffee brew to resemble espresso.
While this can be okay with you, it is still important to realize what type of espresso a machine can brew before you buy it. So, below, I will list the best rated combo espresso and coffee makers according to whether or not they can brew an authentic shot of espresso.
Best Combo Coffee Makers for Espresso and Drip Coffee:
This machine by DeLonghi has it all. On the drip coffee side, you get a nice 10-cup capacity pot with a minimum brew of 1-4 cups. It has programmability for auto brew using the digital clock.
The Espresso side using a 15-bar pressure pump, so you should expect a decent and authentic shot of espresso. The simple button controls on the front panel allow you to switch between espresso brewing or steam wand, which you can use to heat and froth your milk. As this is a single heater machine, you cannot perform both tasks at the same time, and you should expect a bit of wait (few minutes) between each task until the machine is ready again.
The reservoir has an active carbon filter that keeps water fresh and clean of any impurities so you can make your best tasting coffee and espresso shots. If you’re going to use already filtered water or bottled water, this filter isn’t necessary.
DeLonghi BCO430BM vs. BCO430, Is There a Difference?
You’ll notice this machine is available under two model names. The only difference here is color. BM here stands for Black and Metal.
Can DeLonghi BCO430 Brew Coffee Capsules and Pods?
If you’re referring to capsules and pods that single-serve machine use (such as Nespresso or Keurig’s K-Cups), then no. This machine uses ground coffee only. It can accommodate soft pods, which are also referred to ESE pods, for espresso brewing.
First thing you’ll notice about the Espressione machine is how sleek it looks with its clean stainless steel exterior. This totally gives a high quality feel to the machine.
Like the DeLonghi, this machine has two sides to it. A 10-cup coffee pot side and an authentic espresso brewing side with a 19-bar pressure pump.
The coffee maker side is as simple as it gets. Fill in the coffee filter and hit the brew option. Sadly, the machine doesn’t have a digital timer for auto brew programmability.
The espresso side allows you to choose between single shot, double shot or manual brewing which allows you to brew your own volume of shot manually. There’s also a steam wand for heating and frothing milk.
The water reservoir has a front window that allows you to see right away which level the water is at.
While the Espressione is designed in Switzerland, it is made in China.
Best Runner-Up Combo Coffee Makers
The following machines are not runner-ups because they’re of less quality than the machines listed above, but here’s the deal: these machines don’t have pumps to make authentic espresso shots. If you decide to go for any of these machines, know that the best you’ll get is a very concentrated amount of drip coffee to mimic an espresso shot.
This is a popular choice for a coffee maker and it’s celebrated for its versatility. Ninja’s coffee maker gives you many choices when it comes serving sizes and brew type.
For serving sizes, you get 6 of them: single cup, XL cup, travel mug, multi-serve (large travel mug), half pot and full pot, which is 50 oz.
Brew choices are classic, rich (bolder taste), over ice which brews stronger so it doesn’t taste watered down when mixed with ice, and there’s specialty. Specialty is the coffee concentrate that the Ninja makes to replace Espresso for specialty coffee drinks. It’s brewed in 4 oz size.
To make a cappuccino, latte or whichever coffee drink, you’ll need to froth milk. This Ninja machine does not have a steam wand, but it does have a built-in milk frother, the whisk kind. So you’ll have to heat your milk first, then using the frother to create a delicious froth for a latte. The Ninja Specialty coffee maker does not use any pods, coffee ground only.
If you prefer to use single-serve pods, this one is a great option. Keurig’s K-Cafe uses K-Cups, just like any other Keurig machine. As you might know, these pods are available from a wide variety of brands, so your choices are wide open here.
For coffee brewing, you get to select from four serving sizes: 6, 8, 10 and 12 oz. But what if you want to make a latte or a cappuccino?
You can use the Shot option, which will brew a 2 oz shot of coffee for the base of your coffee drink. Using the built-in milk frother, choose from Latte or Cappuccino option to adjust the froth density and level. The frother heats and froths the milk automatically. All you have to do is pour it into your coffee cup to complete your drink.
Keurig’s K-Cafe uses K-Cup pods only. If you want to use your own coffee ground, you can use a refillable pod.
Are There Espresso K-Cup Pods?
There are some Espresso roast K-Cups, which only means that they are very dark roast blends. For the ‘Shot’ serving size, you can use any type of K-Cup you want, and the machine will dispense 2 oz serving out of it.
Of course, you also have the option to use any serving size you like here. Get as creative as you like and create your own recipes!