The 10 Best Cappuccino Machines That Bring the Coffee Shop to Your Home
Avid coffee drinkers know that nothing compares to the rich, bold flavor of a perfectly made cappuccino. The beloved beverage consists of espresso, steamed milk, and a foamy topper, and it's a coffee house menu staple that might seem like it requires a lot of artistry to master, at least compared to classic drip coffee. But what espresso lovers might not realize is that cappuccinos are incredibly easy to recreate at home — all you need is the right equipment.
Those venturing into the art of at-home cappuccino making will need a quality espresso machine to get their DIY cappuccino up to barista standards. Read on to explore the best cappuccino machines for every skill set and budget, plus a breakdown on what to look out for to make the espresso machine shopping process a little easier.
Best Espresso/Cappuccino Machines at a Glance
- Best Overall: Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine
- Best Budget: Capresso Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
- Best for Pods: De'Longhi EC680M Espresso Machine
- Best Manual: Flair Espresso Maker
- Best Semi-Automatic: Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Maker
- Best Fully Automatic: Philips 3200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
- Best Super-Automatic: Jura S8 Fully Automatic Espresso & Coffee Machine
- Best for Small Counters: Delonghi Espresso Maker
- Best for Beginners: Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Pro Espresso Machine
- Best Value: EspressoWorks All-In-One Espresso Machine & Cappuccino Maker Barista Bundle Set
What to Consider When Buying a Cappuccino Machine
There's more to finding the best espresso machines than meets the eye. Considering these factors will make sure you get a model that's right for you.
Manual: Best suited for experienced skill sets, manual espresso machines grant at-home cappuccino makers the freedom to personalize every aspect of the process, and this type of machine yields a bold, flavorful espresso. The beans must be run through a coffee grinder first and will be pumped through a user-operated lever, which is also responsible for the pressure of the boiling water and the flow of the beans through the portafilter. These models don't come with a frother, so you'll need to purchase your own milk steamer in order to make your cappuccinos. We recommend an all-in-one model like this one from Miroco or a convenient handheld frother like Zulay's best-selling model.
Semi-Automatic: These are sought after for their speedy brewing processes and budget-friendly price tags. Though their design falls more on the manual side because you still have to grind, tamp, and extract the espresso yourself, semi-automatic cappuccino machines oftentimes come with convenient features like temperature stability, commercial-style portafilters and frothers, and multiple coffee strengths. Many espresso drinkers prefer them because they allow them to have more control over their drink, creating more opportunities for customizing the intensity of flavor, water levels, and thickness of the foam.
Fully Automatic: Like semi-automatic models, fully automatic cappuccino machines require manual grinding and foaming. However, they have an automatic water measuring feature, meaning they can stop the flow of water by themselves when your coffee is ready.
Super-Automatic: These espresso machines are built with tons of amazing features to streamline the at-home cappuccino making process. Typically offering built-in grinding functionality, multiple temperature controls, and various coffee strengths and sizes, super-automatic are all-in-one models that basically do all of the work for you. But, of course, this makes them more expensive.
Portafilters: Every espresso/cappuccino machine has a portafilter, which is the basket the coffee is brewed in. As a general rule of thumb, the higher quality the portafilter, the better-tasting the cappuccino. Beginners will want to opt for a pressurized portafilter, which uses a filter basket that makes the coffee pass through two screens before it gets to your cup. This means that you'll have more wiggle room when it comes to tamping and you don't need to worry about anything interfering with the machine's bar pressure, which measures the force at which the water is pushed through the espresso grounds during the brewing process and impacts your drink's flavor, strength, and crema.
More experienced coffee drinkers, on the other hand, will most likely prefer non-pressurized ones (aka single-wall portafilters), because they offer more customization and a richer flavor. However, pressurized varieties are great for those that have a low-grade grinder that produces uneven coffee grinds, whereas those with a non-pressurized portafilter have to be precise with their tamping, grind size, and measurements.
Pod Compatibility: Those who don't foresee themselves grinding their own espresso beans or purchasing a cappuccino machine with a built-in grinder will want to consider a model that is compatible with ESE pods. Not only are these models super speedy, but they're also easier to clean compared to espresso machines that only work with grinds. Plus, the pod options are endless.
Milk Frothing: Do you watch in awe as your barista steams the milk for your cappuccino? If yes, then you'll want a cappuccino machine that comes with a steaming wand, which is the same attachment that coffee shop models have, and can be quite tricky to navigate for beginners. For easier frothing, you can opt for a cappuccino machine with a frothing tank that does the frothing for you, making them faster compared to those with steaming wands. Some frothing tanks are detachable so you can easily clean them and store the leftover milk in your fridge.
Then, of course, there are external factors like size, color, and material that need to be taken into consideration. And if you're an espresso connoisseur, you'll definitely want a machine that is able to make a variety of options like lattes, flat whites, and macchiatos.
Best Cappuccino Machines You Can Buy in 2021
Best Overall: Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine
Ideal for cappuccino novices and experts alike, this top-rated espresso machine from Breville takes the guesswork out of at-home cappuccino making with its streamlined design, which does everything from grinding to frothing. Offering a customized experience from start to finish, this model allows you to choose your grind size and flavor boldness with its easy-to-use dial and conical burr grinder. Taking your roast preferences into account, it then precisely extracts the espresso and uses optimal water pressure and temperature to ensure that every sip is rich in flavor and perfectly balanced.
This cappuccino machine has a 4.7-star rating on Amazon and has amassed over 4,000 five-star reviews from happy shoppers who have each praised its all-in-one design and durable stainless steel construction, which they also noted was easy to clean.
Best Budget: Capresso Pump Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
A premium cappuccino machine doesn’t have to break the bank. For under $100, this budget-friendly model from Cappresso uses its 15-bar pump to heat water in record time, which also reaches the optimal pressure to brew quality, flavorful espresso. Equipped with a milk frother nozzle and a self-locking dual-capacity sieve, this space-saving espresso machine can be used to recreate your favorite cafe’s signature cappuccino and latte drinks from the comfort of your own kitchen. Reviewers shared that its auto-rinse cycle makes it easy to clean and raved over its cup-warming feature. It’s not hard to see why it’s one of Amazon’s best-selling semi-automatic cappuccino machines, or why it has hundreds of five-star ratings.
Best for Pods: De'Longhi EC680M Espresso Machine
With this espresso machine from De’Longhi, coffee pod drinkers no longer have to sacrifice quality for convenience. Able to switch between espresso, cappuccino, and latte beverages and customize each to your likings, this compact stainless steel machine does the measuring for you so you can enjoy the perfect espresso drink without any of the mess that comes with grinding your own coffee beans. It’s built with an automatic flow stop feature to prevent spills, and has a steel drip tray that will catch anything that manages to sneak out of your mug. Since its pod-dispensing, dual-action sieve design is so simple to use, there’s more time to experiment with its built-in frother. It has hundreds of five-star reviews on Amazon from pleased shoppers, who noted that the cappuccino machine is fast, durable, and comparable to higher-end models.
Best Manual: Flair Espresso Maker
You’re in full control of your cappuccino journey with the Flair Espresso Maker. Its modern-inspired, 100 percent manual design holds 60 ml of boiled water and produces 40 ml of espresso that’s accompanied by the perfect level of crema. According to reviewers, it pairs well with a burr grinder like the Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder and makes a great gift for espresso enthusiasts.
Best Semi-Automatic: Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Maker
This cappuccino machine from Mr. Coffee is a 15-bar pump system that provides the ideal extraction pressure for a rich and flavorful brew right before your eyes, helping you get your morning cup of joe faster. Easy to navigate thanks to its one-touch control panel and streamlined espresso, milk, and water reservoirs, this top-rated machine does all the measuring for you, and even froths milk on its own when making cappuccino and lattes.
Amazon shoppers, who have given this cappuccino machine more than 5,500 five-star ratings, said that its stand-out include its double shot functionality, self-cleaning cycle, and removable milk chamber, which allows you to easily store leftover milk in the fridge.
Best Fully Automatic: Philips 3200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
Ready to go with its four preset drink options, a built-in grinder, frothing wand, and automatic water measuring and heating features, this fully automatic model from Phillips has the perks of a super-automatic cappuccino machine, while still offering the customization of semi-automatic models. Thanks to its 12-step brewing technology, you still have control over the strength, volume, and temperature of your cappuccino, plus the level of aroma it releases. Speaking of aroma, this top-rated espresso machine has an aroma seal that keeps your beans fresher for longer. Reviewers also highlighted that its control panel is easy to navigate, especially if you’re a beginner.
Best Super-Automatic: Jura S8 Fully Automatic Espresso & Coffee Machine
At $3,800, this top-of-the-line super-automatic coffee machine is definitely an investment, but a worthy one according to reviewers, who have given it an impressive 4.6 rating. With its one-touch digital control panel and a wide variety of drink options, it uses a pulse extraction process to create a consistent and optimal brew and a smart, self-measuring filtered water system. It’s also built with advanced foam technology to achieve a barista-level consistency on its own, no frothing required. Plus, it offers 10 coffee strength levels, three temperature levels to execute 15 classic espresso beverages like cappuccinos, flat whites, latte macchiato, and more.
Best for Small Counters: Delonghi Espresso Maker
This space-saving cappuccino machine from Delonghi offers a sleek profile that suits any kitchen counter layout. Able to accommodate single and double shots as well as espresso pods, this 15-bar extraction machine produces perfectly-crafted cappuccinos that are bold in flavor and brewed at the optimal temperature thanks to its dual thermostat design. It also comes equipped with a manual milk frother attachment that exceeds your favorite coffee shop’s foam standards. Reviewers love that it’s budget-friendly, durable, and can brew two espressos at once.
Best for Beginners: Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Pro Espresso Machine
This top-rated espresso machine from Gaggia is the perfect model for dipping your toes into the world of at-home cappuccino making. Compatible with both pre-grounded espresso and ESE pods, it has the same bells and whistles as your favorite coffee shop’s espresso machine, only according to reviewers, it’s much easier to use. This three-button controlled model has indicator lights so you know when it’s time to brew and steam, plus single and double shot baskets for added convenience. It’s got an impressive 4.6 rating from Amazon shoppers, who note that the machine is incredibly durable, fast-heating, and pairs well with a quality grinder like the Baratza Sette 270Wi.
Best Value: EspressoWorks All-In-One Espresso Machine & Cappuccino Maker Barista Bundle Set
Another beginner-friendly model, this espresso machine from EspressoWorks gives you all of the equipment you need to brew your favorite espresso drinks at home. For $220, you get a 15-bar pump, fast-heating espresso machine, but also an electric grinder, a stainless steel filter with single and double shot baskets, a milk frothing cup, a dual-sided measuring spoon and tamper, and two espresso cups to enjoy your creations in. It’s not hard to see why it has over 1,000 5-star ratings on Amazon.