Drip coffee makers are a standard in almost every kitchen. They are an essential because they are easy to use and produce a decent cup of coffee with minimal effort. All you need is coffee, a filter, and to fill the reservoir with water to produce a cup or even a pot of coffee. Some drip coffee makers provide a mesh filter, so they don’t require you to have a paper filter making them eco-friendly. Others are programmable, allowing you to wake up to your coffee already made for you—essential for anyone who isn’t a morning person.
There are many different options of drip coffee makers. There are so many more options than that old-school dusty Mr. Coffee machine currently taking up space in your office break room. Whether you are looking for a simple sleek machine, one that yields 14 cups, or even one that cleans itself, I’ve got just the machine for you!
Our Top Drip Coffee Maker for 2017
The best drip coffee maker on the market is the Cuisinart DCC-2650 brew central 12 cup with glass carafe. This coffee maker is programmable and sleek. Cuisinart is one of the most well-known appliance makers in the industry. This drip coffee maker is good looking and has many great features including a unique water distribution system. This water distribution system ensures that water sprays evenly over the coffee grounds instead of just one spot.
The price point on the Cuisinart DCC-2650 brew central 12-Cup with glass carafe is perfect for those who are wanting to upgrade from a Mr. Coffee or Braun. It also comes with a standard 3-year limited warranty.
Types of Machines
Drip coffee machines are automatic coffee makers that you fill with water and ground coffee. Essentially, boiling water is made by the device and drips over grounds producing a cup of coffee. There are many different types of drip coffee makers. These makers are low hassle and can produce decent cups of coffee under the correct conditions. You can “set it and forget it” with these types of coffee makers. Other ways of making coffee typically require much more effort.
While other types of coffee machines may produce better or stronger coffee, the drip coffee machine will always be a staple in kitchens because of ease of use. To produce a good cup of coffee with this type of machine, you have to keep it simple with high quality coffee and a good machine.
Important Things to Keep in Mind
The coffee to water ratio is one of the most essential keys to success for your drip coffee maker. If don’t use enough coffee, you end up with a watered down brew. If you use too much, it may be bitter or too strong for your tastes. Ideally, you should use 2 to 3 ounces of ground coffee per 45 ounces of water. This can definitely be adjusted according to your preferences.
Because water and coffee are the two keys to a great cup of drip coffee, you should focus on high quality beans and filtered water or invest in a filtered water system.
Do not over grind your beans! I know it is hard, but try not to overgrind. Grind your beans to a medium consistency. There is some controversy regarding grinders with blades versus the more expensive burr grinders. Some experts state that grinders with blades heat up the beans, essentially heating and cooking the beans. Heating the beans can result in burnt tasting coffee. Personally, I think a standard blade grinder is perfectly fine for a drip coffee maker. If you have the budget for it, you can invest in a decent burr grinder for around 80 to 100 dollars. Burr grinders do have different settings and can guarantee a more uniform grind.
Another important thing to keep in mind with a drip coffee maker when it comes to coffee ground consistency is the type of filter you use. If your filter is a flat bottom filter, you should use a medium consistency grind, similar to sand. Medium grinds are perfect for coffee makers that have metal or plastic filters as well. Cone shaped filters require medium or fine consistency grinds similar to granulated sugar. The road to the perfect drip coffee may require a little experimenting to get the correct grind. If the coffee comes out too bitter, you may want to try a coarser grind. Finer grinds usually result in a stronger flavor so if your coffee lacks flavor, you may need to grind the beans finer next time.
Most Significant Features To Look for and How to Look for the Perfect Machine for You
Some drip coffee makers have the ability to set the brew temperature, ensuring that your coffee reaches the correct temperature. There is nothing worse than making a pot of coffee that is room temperature. Many top drip coffee makers come standard with hotter temperature settings even if they don’t offer the ability to change the settings.
If you have a larger family or prefer multiple cups of coffee, you may want to choose a drip coffee maker with a larger capacity. This may be a deal breaker for you. The smaller capacity machines can also produce coffee at a higher speed because they are not brewing large amounts. Speed and capacity definitely go hand-in-hand for most models.
Another significant feature to look for in a drip coffee maker is a tank that has a water filter. Many coffee experts claim that filtered water is essential for any good cup of coffee. Some machines need replacement tablets or filters and this can save money by not having to buy external filters or bottled water. If you are an eco-friendly person, this feature may be a must-have for you.
Many drip coffee makers on the market have options to program brew times beforehand. On some models, you can also program the cup size and strength. For coffee drinkers constantly on the go, programmability is key.
For people like me who need at least one cup of coffee in the morning before I am able to function, programmability is key.
Drip coffee makers are available from $19.99 to upwards of $600. Like any other coffee maker or appliance, added features increase the cost of the appliance.
My suggestion is to search for a coffee maker that has most of your preferred features. Looking for a new coffee maker during sales is also essential if you are on a tight budget but want the perfect machine.
Positives About Drip Coffee Makers
There are many positives about drip coffee makers. Drip coffee makers are almost effortless. They just need to be filled with coffee, a filter, and water. Once the machine is ready, you press one to two buttons and you are good to go.
They are also relatively easy to clean. Carafes are either metal or glass. They can be easily rinsed out in the sink. The filter holders can usually be rinsed out pretty easily as well. The machine should be descaled every month or so with a vinegar and water solution. Compared to capsule and espresso makers, they are typically much more affordable and you are not limited when it comes to coffee roasts like espresso and coffee capsule machines. You also have many different options of drip coffee makers and cost to invest in one is minimal.
Negatives About Drip Coffee Makers
Drip coffee makers do require electricity. Being an electrical appliance, they may have to be replaced every few years. Although many can be sleek and modern, they do take up additional space on your countertop. The traditional look of a drip coffee maker may bother people who are used to espresso makers or capsule coffee makers. Drip coffee makers will not yield strong espresso or tea like some other machines. They typically only make drip coffee.
The Best Drip Coffee Maker
The best drip coffee maker available is the Cuisinart DCC-2650 brew central 12 cup with glass carafe. This coffee maker is programmable, sleek, and made by one of the most well-known appliance makers in the industry. It is good looking and has many great features including a unique water distribution system that ensures water sprays evenly over the coffee grounds instead of just one spot. It measures in at 7.75 inches by 9 inches by 14 inches. You can program this drip coffee maker up to 24 hours in advance, which is really handy. This machine also claims to make coffee 25% faster than its competitors.
The Cuisinart DCC-2650 has the ability to brew an astonishing 14 cups of coffee, which is perfect for larger households. It also has a brew pause function that makes pouring you a cup while in the middle of brewing a whole pot an option without making a huge mess. It also has an automatic shut-off, which is perfect for forgetful people (like me).
The adjustable carafe temperature on the Cuisinart DCC-2650 allows for temperature control with high, medium, and low settings.
This machine is very eco-friendly because it has a gold tone reusable filter. One of the biggest pluses about this coffee maker is the reusable filter, which means you don’t need to buy paper filters. This is a huge money saving feature that lands this drip coffee maker in my number one spot. The water tank on this machine also has a charcoal water filter, which also saves money on filtered water or bottled water. Reviewers on Amazon state that the taste of their coffee improved while using this machine because of the built-in charcoal water filter. People find that when chlorine and other chemicals are removed from the water, the taste of their coffee improves.
For those coffee drinkers who prefer strong tasting coffee, this coffee maker has an adjustable brew strength feature. I prefer the “bold option” which offers stronger tasting coffee. This coffee maker is so easy to clean; it even has a self-cleaning feature. What’s not to like? In case you are on the fence about this machine, it also comes with a 3-year manufacturers warranty.
The main negative listed online about this machine is that the cup size is based on a 5 ounce cup not a standard 8 ounce cup. Those who want an 8-ounce cup have to program the machine for 2 cups and throw out the overage. There were also some complaints about having to replace the charcoal filter, but I don’t think that this is necessarily a negative.
Why It’s The Best
I like the Cuisinart DCC-2650. It has a large capacity, which makes it perfect for people who drink multiple cups of coffee. Cuisinart makes some of the best appliances out there. They are solid but not as expensive as some of their competitors. The biggest game changer on this coffee maker is the built in charcoal water filter. I live in an area that has harsh water. If I don’t use filtered water, my coffee maker needs to be descaled more often. For under $100, you really can’t go wrong.
The Cuisinart DCC-2650 brew central 12-Cup with glass carafe is currently on sale on Amazon for $88.45.
The Second Best Drip Coffee Maker
The Bonavita BV1900TS is the runner up for the best drip coffee machine. It is has very similar reviews to the Cuisinart DCC-2650, but costs approximately 45 dollars more. The Bonavita has a one-touch brew operation with an automatic shut off. The automatic shut off is key for those of us who cannot remember to turn off our coffee machines. It measures in at 12.4 inches by 6.8 inches by 12.2 inches.
It has a simple stainless steel and black design. This machine has a powerful 1500-watt heater that maintains the most optimal brewing temperature. It also has a feature called pre-infusion mode, which wets the ground coffee, allowing degassing before brewing. This is also called “blooming” for those coffee experts out there. The flat-bottomed filter basket is somewhat unique among drip coffee makers and should be noted for filter purchasing.
The large showerhead feature allows for better saturation and an overall uniform extraction. This coffee maker is durable and long lasting. It is made from stainless steel and has a thermal carafe. It is one of the only drip coffee makers that is Specialty Coffee Association certified. This means that the coffee machine meets several hard to attain guidelines set by the Specialty Coffee Association. There are only 12 drip coffee makers that are Specialty Coffee Association certified.
One main negative to note about the Bonavita BV1900TS is the fact that it lacks programmability. The reason why it is runner up and not number one on this list is the fact that it does not have any options to change water temperature or program brewing ahead of time. In this day and age, I expect the top drip coffee maker to have the ability to program brew times.
Reviewers claim that the coffee in the Bonavita BV1900TS carafe stays hot for 3-4 hours. They also rave about Bonavita’s customer service. One reviewer had issues with the water reservoir cracking and was extremely impressed with how prompt the machine was exchanged. Other reviewers claim that the showerhead water dispenser is key in this machine delivering great coffee.
Why I Recommend It
The Bonavita has some of the best customer service around. Some Amazon reviewers stated that the customer service team at Bonavita is solid and that their team goes above and beyond its competitors.
I think this machine is a strong runner up for best drip coffee maker. As a coffee fanatic, this machine has most must half features and is available for a pretty affordable price.
The Bonavita BV1900TS is available on Amazon for $132.99.
The third best drip coffee maker is the Capresso MT600. This coffee maker measures approximately 9 by 8 by 14 inches. A unique feature of this drip coffee maker is the charcoal water filter, which is a great if you do not have any access to filtered water. The Capresso MT600 makes approximately 10 cups of coffee. It also has an illuminated LCD easy to read display with a digital clock and timer. With this coffee maker, you have the ability to program up to 24 hours beforehand. There is also an electronic filter indicator that alerts you when you need to replace the water filter.
The Capresso MT600 has a gold-toned cone-shaped filter and it brews an entire carafe of coffee in about 6 minutes. It has a stainless steel lined heating system, which ensures even heating. It also has a two-hour automatic shut off. The cord can also be stored inside the machine.
Reviewers have stated that this model drip coffee maker is durable and long lasting.
The reviewers also state that the water level indicator on the side is difficult to see while pouring water into the reservoir.
Why I Recommend It
I like the Capresso MT600 for several reasons. The design is ideal and it brews quickly. It also has some handy technology that can make life easier. I enjoy the option to program my coffee maker up to 24 hours in advance. For a morning coffee drinker such as myself, this feature is handy.
The Capresso MT600 is available on Amazon for $166.23.
The Bonavita BV1800 drip coffee machine has over 3,000 reviews on Amazon. It has a one-touch brew system as well as an automatic shut off. The 1400-watt heater maintains the optimal brewing temperature of between 195 to 205 degrees. The thermal carafe assists in keeping coffee warm. Many drip coffee makers do not heat up to 205 degrees, which makes this brewer unique. It brews coffee in approximately 6 minutes, which is faster than many of its competitors.
This coffee maker comes with either a stainless steel carafe or a glass carafe. I would recommend the stainless steel lined thermal carafe. All plastic on the Bonavita BV1800 coffee maker is BPA-free. The carafe lid, filter basket, and showerhead are all dishwasher safe, which makes for easy cleaning.
This coffee maker does require paper coffee filters. When you first purchase the machine, it may come with several paper coffee filters to get you started. I think that the fact that this machine doesn’t have a reusable filter is a negative. Not only does it require paper filters, it also has no programmability features. Even though it does have limitations, it is still a great machine for the price.
Why I Recommend It
The Bonavita is another great choice for a drip coffee maker. It only takes one touch to turn the machine on. The carafe has an amazing way of keeping the coffee hot, which is essential. It didn’t make the top spot, but it certainly is a contender for one of the best coffee makers. I think Bonavita makes simple and great drip coffee makers that last, which is more than most can say about standard drip coffee makers.
The simple design of the Bonavita BV1800 ensures that you get the best quality cup of coffee.
It is currently for sale on Amazon for $107.10.
The OXO On 9-cup coffee maker is another great drip coffee maker worth mentioning. This coffee maker has several great features. One feature is the timer on the display that indicates how long it has been since the coffee has been brewed. Another great feature is the programmability for auto-brewing. There is also an auto stop valve that lets you pour from the carafe before the brewing cycle is complete.
This drip coffee maker also has a rainmaker style showerhead that evenly spreads water over the coffee grounds for a more uniform saturation, ensuring full flavor. This feature seems to be a trend for newer coffee makers.
The microprocessor-controlled brew cycle makes pour-over style coffee that produces 2 to 9 cups. The manufacturer claims that the coffee stays hotter in this machine and most reviewers backup this claim. This machine consistently maintains the coffee from 198 to 205 degrees.
The single dial to schedule brew options are easier to use compared to many competitors. It takes 6 to 7 minutes to brew a full pot of coffee, which includes the cycle where the machine disburses a small amount of water onto the grounds before it fully starts brewing. That is pretty quick for a drip coffee maker. The water tank capacity is 48 ounces.
Reviewers reiterate that the controls are very easy to use and that the clock setting and scheduled brewing options are very simple. Reviewers also state that the construction of this drip coffee maker is impressive. The machine is sturdy and sleek and is also a Specialty Coffee Association of America certified drip coffee maker.
Why I Recommend It
I really like the OXO On 9-cup coffee maker for a several reasons. First of all, the pour over style of coffee that it produces is unique for a machine of this style. The rainmaker style showerhead ensures that the taste is uniform, which is another great feature. I think this coffee maker really shines. It is slightly more expensive than others on this list, but it will not disappoint.
The OXO On 9-cup coffee maker is available for purchase on Amazon for $199.95.
Best Cold Brew Coffee Maker
I would never have a best of drip coffee machine list without listing a top cold brew coffee maker. Cold brew may not necessarily be your everyday drink, but it’s a great way to make coffee that you can place in your fridge and enjoy on hot summer days. This coffee maker has an automatic shut off and easy cleaning options. It brews smooth and delicious low-acid coffee concentrate. The perforated rainmaker brew head distributes water evenly for optimal flavor. It also has an easy switch that activates the filtration process without having you get your hands dirty. It also has an ultra-fine stainless steel mesh filter, which is reusable and easy to clean.
This machine is composed of five pieces. The glass carafe with measurement markings is made out of durable borosilicate glass. The machine is easy to clean and can be rinsed out quickly in the sink. The stopper on the carafe has a silicone seal that keeps coffee fresh in the refrigerator. It also only weighs a little over 4 pounds.
The machine has a very compact footprint and is easily disassembled for storage.
Reviewers state that reading instructions for the machine is essential for great tasting cold brew. Reviewers also rave about the OXO customer service and the machines ease of use.
Why I Recommend It
I recommend the OXO good grips cold brew for several reasons. I really enjoy iced coffee and this machine simplifies the process. It can also be cleaned easily, which is a huge plus. You also do not have to buy any filters. I have learned over the years that the coffee to water ratio is also essential for a perfect cold brew. If you’re in the market for a cold brew coffee maker for under $50, this is really a great buy.
You can purchase the OXO Good Grips cold brew coffee maker on Amazon for $49.95.
How We Selected the Best
The best drip coffee maker was carefully selected. After researching Amazon’s top seller list and several well-known online coffee blogs, the consensus on the Cuisinart being the best coffee maker was unanimous. I also cross-referenced my list with the Specialty Coffee Association certification of drip coffee makers listed online. When looking for the perfect drip coffee maker, there are a lot of variables. Some people want their machine to be programmable, while others care more about the price point and taste. A drip coffee maker that is perfect for one person may not be perfect for the next person.
The Cuisinart DCC-2650 Brew Central with glass carafe has over 1,000 reviews on Amazon. It seems to be the universal winner. I scrolled through the reviews and made sure that they were mostly positive and the negatives that were mentioned were minor. The machine is sleek and attractive. Its large capacity makes it ideal for the majority of households.
The Budget Choice
There are two good budget drip coffee makers. The first budget drip coffee maker that is the DeLonghi DC514T 14-Cup programmable drip coffeemaker. It weighs 9.1 pounds and is 8.5 by 7.2 by 13.5 inches. It also has a 14-cup capacity, which is ideal for larger households. The advanced water filtration system ensures that your coffee will not be effected by additives or chlorine in your local water.
The DeLonghi DC514T also has LED backlights that illuminate every 15 minutes for the first hour your coffee sits, so that you know exactly how fresh your coffee is. It is also programmable for up to 24 hours and has a two-hour automatic shut off. It also has an “aroma button” that releases water to saturate coffee grounds a little bit at a time to extract a more flavorful coffee.
Positive reviews of this drip coffee maker indicate that it is easy to use, makes hot coffee, and is very attractive. Negative reviews state that it does not last as long as others and that the carafe is very fragile.
It was engineered in Italy. For the price point, it is a good choice for an inexpensive drip coffee maker.
The DeLonghi DC514T 14-Cup programmable coffee maker is currently for sale on Amazon for $68.97.
The second budget drip coffee maker is the Hamilton Beach 12-cup programmable brewstation.
This drip coffee maker has some good features including an adjustable automatic shut off. It weighs in at approximately 7 pounds and is 11 by 8.2 by 15.2 inches.
It is made of stainless steel and plastic. It brews up to 12 cups of coffee, dispensing as little as one cup at a time. To make cleaning easy, the insulated reservoir is removable and dishwasher safe. Coffee dispensing only requires one hand. Reviewers claim that the machine is easy to disassemble for cleaning and is a great quality for the price. It offers versatile brewing. You can choose from bold, regular, small batch, and iced coffee.
The main negative about this drip coffee maker is that it does not come with a carafe. You can use your own mug, travel mug, or your own carafe. Many reviewers state that they continue to purchase newer models when the prior model wears out. Some reviewers on Amazon also claim that the machine is noisy while brewing, but the complaints about noise are not significant.
Why I Recommend It
If you want a cup of coffee with simple options, this is the machine for you. I enjoy the Hamilton Beach 12-cup programmable brewstation. It is versatile and allows you to use a mug or carafe. The machine also makes small batch and iced coffee. I like the versatility of the Hamilton Beach brewstation.
The Hamilton Beach 12-cup programmable brewstation dispensing coffee maker summit ultra can be purchased on Amazon for $45.73.
The Premium Choice
If you aren’t on a budget and enjoy a fine cup of drip coffee, the Ratio Eight is for you. It is made of glass, walnut, and aluminum. The glass carafe is shaped similar to an hourglass, which is quite unique. This machine resembles a pour over and drip coffee maker combined. The die-cast aluminum combined with satin metallic ceramic finish and hardwood really makes a design statement in any kitchen. The carafe is made of hand-blown borosilicate glass, which is durable and beautiful.
The Ratio uses advanced technology to produce a pour over style cup of coffee with the press of a button. The coffee is smooth and clearer than a typical drip, eliminating the oils frequently seen in French press coffee and drip coffee.
You simply press a button and the machine does the rest.
The main negative aspect of the Ratio Eight mentioned by several online reviewers is the condensation on the carafe. For the price of the Ratio Eight, reviewers thought excessive condensation on the machine shouldn’t occur. I have seen several pictures online of the condensation on this machine and I am curious how it will hold up over time.
The Ratio Eight is an interior designers dream. Reviewers online are a bit shocked at the price, but many say that this machine is well worth the price tag.
Reviewers of this machine rave about its design, customer service, and overall quality. At $595, this is definitely a premium coffee maker if the price point is in your budget.
Why Trust Me
I have researched Amazon for hours and searched various coffee appliance stores online and in person for the best and most reliable drip coffee machine. I have also asked friends and co-workers which drip coffee machine they recommend. I research and choose a best drip coffee maker based on reliability, durability, price, and reviews. I only pick the best machines that have a lot of reviews and that are affordable for the every day coffee drinker.
After looking high and low for the best drip coffee maker, I can assure you that the Cuisinart DCC-2650 is an excellent choice. It is a solid machine that is for sale at an affordable price.
Extras For Your Drip Coffee Maker
One of the best things to invest in when you have a drip coffee maker is a coffee grinder. Sure, you can buy your coffee already ground, but that limits your coffee options as many brands do not offer pre-ground coffee. Even if the coffee is available pre-ground, it usually is not freshly ground and tends to be more expensive.
Krups F203 Electric Spice and Coffee Grinder with Stainless Steel Blades, 3-Ounce
The Krups F203 is one of my favorite grinders on the market. It is reliable, durable, and long lasting. The 200-watt motor provides speedy grinding. It grinds up to 3 ounces of coffee within seconds. The oval design is sleek and simple. Stainless steel blades ensure uniform ground coffee. This grinder can also grind spices, herbs, nuts, and grains and it comes with a 2-year warranty.
The Krups F203 is available for sale on Amazon for $16.95.
The Ember Temperature Control Mug
The Ember mug keeps your coffee at your preferred temperature for up to 2 hours.
It is made from BPA-free plastic. Unfortunately, it is hand wash only. This mug is a handy device for anyone who spends time commuting or is constantly on the go. It holds 12 ounces of hot coffee, and has a push-to-open, leak-proof 360-degree lid. It also has a patented microprocessor-controlled heating system. There is also a manual rotating temperature dial or it can be controlled by the mobile app. The technology on this mug is simply outstanding. The mug comes with a charging coaster. The technology in the Ember includes space-grade thermal insulation.
The first time I heard about the Ember temperature control mug was when my brother bought one for his girlfriend for Christmas. I am still amazed about how this technology works.
The Ember is one of the most high-tech coffee gadgets a coffee lover could have.
The Ember is currently sold out on most websites, but you can find it on Amazon for $318.49.
The Final Word
Drip coffee machines are not going anywhere anytime soon. For the best cup of drip coffee, you should invest in good coffee beans and remember to descale your machine on a regular basis. I know that I provided a lot of information to take in about drip coffee makers, but hopefully this list will help with your search of the best drip coffee maker. There are many options out there to choose from.
If you prioritize your must-haves and compare those with this list, you are sure to find the perfect drip coffee maker for you.