The 9 Best Budget Espresso Machines of 2021
As a true coffee lover, you do not need a professional barista to enjoy your daily cup of Americano, make a latte or one of those other fancy Italian-style brews. With one of those budget espresso machines, you can make them from the comfort of your home.
However, finding the best budget espresso machine from the many options out there will require you to understand what these machines are all about and what to look for in a good one.
But, this guide has you covered as we review 9 top-rated budget espresso machines and also explain in detail the factors to consider when choosing one.
9 Best Budget Espresso Machines – Review
1. Breville Nespresso BEC220BLK1AUC1 (Highly Efficient One-Touch)
2. Mr.Coffee BVMC-ECMP1000-RB (An Incredibly Amazing 3-in-1)
3. Gaggia 14101 (Large Capacity Commercial)
4. DeLonghi EC680M (Well-Built & Versatile)
5. Hamilton Beach 40792 (Inexpensive with Barista-Quality Coffee)
6. DeLonghi EC155M (The Best under $100)
7. DeLonghi ECP3420 (Top Quality)
8. Capresso 304.01 (Small But High-Performer)
9. Bella BLA13683 (Great Quality at a Bargain)
1. Breville Nespresso BEC220BLK1AUC1
(Highly Efficient One-Touch)
2. Mr.Coffee BVMC-ECMP1000-RB
(An Incredibly Amazing 3-in-1)
3. Gaggia 14101
(Large Capacity Commercial)
4. DeLonghi EC680M
(Well-Built & Versatile)
5. Hamilton Beach 40792
(Inexpensive with Barista-quality Coffee)
6. DeLonghi EC155M
(The Best under $100)
7. DeLonghi ECP3420
8. Capresso 304.01
(Small But High-Performer)
9. Bella BLA13683
(Great Quality at a Bargain)
1. Breville Nespresso BEC220BLK1AUC1 – Highly Efficient One-Touch Coffee Maker
- Capacity: 20.29 ounces
- Pump Pressure: 19 bar
- Dimensions: 12.9" x 3.3" x 8"
- Weight: 5.1 pounds
For the many coffee lovers that prefer a more compact and portable espresso machine, the top-rated Nespresso Essenza Mini will be an excellent pick, and it also comes in a sleek and modern design.
Besides its size and looks, this single-serve coffee maker is also designed for efficiency and convenience as it features an impressive 19-bar pump pressure and highly convenient one-touch operation.
The espresso machine also heats up quite fast as the water will be at the ideal temperature in just 25 seconds, and it also has an adjustable cup size an energy-saving mode.
When you buy this machine, you will also get 16 OriginaLine capsules and a detailed instructions booklet to ensure you have everything you need for immediate espresso making.
The 20.29 oz water tank is relatively smaller and will require more regular refills, and this machine can be quite loud. However, these are minor shortcomings that should not be deal breakers.
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2. Mr.Coffee BVMC-ECMP1000-RB – An Incredibly Amazing 3-in-1 Coffee Maker
- Capacity: 40 ounces
- Pump Pressure: 15 bar
- Dimensions: 12" x 14" x 12.25"
- Weight: 9 pounds
Because you will not always be in the mood to take your usual cup of espresso, it is a great idea to go for a versatile machine like this one by Mr. Coffee that will also allow you to make many other types of coffee.
With the 3-in-1 machine, you can also make lattes and cappuccinos and easily choose between one and double shot servings all at the press of a button.
With the 15-bar pump system, this coffee maker has all the pressure required to quickly extract those bold and rich flavors. And this is generally a fast and easy to use espresso machine that also takes little time and effort to clean.
There is also an automatic and hassle-free milk frother with an adjustable knob and both the water and milk reservoirs are removable and super easy to fill.
Absence of an auto shut off function should not be a huge concern as it will not take anything away from the fact that this machine makes some rich and great-tasting coffee, and is, therefore, one of the best budget espresso machines out there.
Gaggia 14101 – Large Capacity Commercial Espresso Machine
- Capacity: 72 oz
- Pump Pressure: 17-1/2 bar
- Dimensions: 9.5" x 8" x 14.2"
- Weight: 20 pounds
With a 72-ounce water reservoir capacity, the Gaggia 14101 is designed to ensure you can make many cups of your favorite coffee brew before having to refill it.
Besides the higher water capacity, this espresso machine also has a 17-1/2-bar pump pressure which is higher than what many others in its class have to offer. The higher pressure means that it will pull out shots relatively faster.
With the intuitive control panel on this machine, it is also relatively easier to operate, and the water reservoir is removable to make cleanups and refills quick and easy.
The durable commercial-grade construction that includes stainless steel housing and chrome-plated brass portafilter also helps to make this one of the best inexpensive espresso machines.
Also, the espresso machine has a three-way solenoid valve that will provide a drip-free operation, and it will also come with a simple to use turbo-frother steam wand attachment for milk frothing.
Although this espresso machine is the priciest in our list, given its commercial grade construction and performance, it will still give you great value for your cash. And its price is still within the budget range for an espresso machine.
4. DeLonghi EC680M – Well-Built and Versatile
- Capacity: 34 ounces
- Pump Pressure: 15 bar
- Dimensions: 13" x 5.9" x 13"
- Weight: 9.3 pounds
If you have always wanted to own a cheap espresso machine that produces barista-quality beverages, here is one for you by DeLonghi.
It is a well-built and versatile machine that not only makes both single and double espresso shots but will also make other great tasting brews like latte and cappuccino.
This 34-ounce capacity espresso machine comes with a manual frother that will ensure you always get a rich and creamy froth and a 15-bar pressure to ensure quality and consistent results.
The sleek and space-saving design ensures that it will not only look good on your countertop but also take up little space. And it also has a sturdy stainless steel construction for many years of great service.
You can also use taller cups on this espresso machine as it has an easy to adjust bottom tray. But one of the things that you will love most about it is that there is no wait time between cups as it maintains the optimal brewing temperature.
Although it vibrates a lot and the base is a little too light and hence moves easily, these are minor issues to fix with a little innovation, and so this is still one of the best budget espresso machines out there.
5. Hamilton Beach 40792 – Inexpensive Espresso Machine with Barista-Quality Coffee
- Pump Pressure: 15 bar
- Dimensions: 14.4" x 9.7" x 11.7"
- Weight: 9.3 pounds
You do not need to always pass by your local café or coffee shop to get some nice espresso because with this Hamilton Beach espresso machine you can get it from the comfort of your home.
The top quality and highly affordable espresso machine has a 15-bar Italian pump to ensure you get excellent and quick extraction for barista-quality brews. And it will also come with a unique slide and lock portafilter for quick and easy setups.
Steaming and frothing milk for other beverages like lattes and cappuccinos is also made easy by the swiveling steam wand. You will also never have to use a cold cup as there is a handy cup warmer on the machine.
Cleaning up after use and refills are made easy by the removable water reservoir and drip tray, and there are also some highly useful indicator lights on the machine.
The portafilter material feels cheap, but for the price, it is hard to get anything better and it does not seem to affect its performance which makes this a non-issue.
6. DeLonghi EC155M – The Best Under $100 Espresso Machine
- Capacity: 35 ounces
- Pump Pressure: 15-bar
- Dimensions: 11.4 x 9.1 x 13.8 in
- Weight: 6.72 pounds
DeLonghi EC155M is one of the best espresso machines under $100 that you will get anywhere as it is not only well-built and durable but also produces great-tasting and flavorful coffees.
This espresso machine uses a self-priming system to ensure that it will always be ready to use within a short time, and it has two separate thermostats for easy control of water and steam temperatures.
Using this machine is also quick and easy as it comes with a single selector knob for the on/off function and also for espresso and cappuccino.
With the removable 35-ounce water reservoir and drip tray, this is also an easy to clean coffee maker, and it will also come with some handy indicator lights.
There is no auto shut-off feature on this coffee maker, but this should not be a problem as you only need to keep a keen eye on the brewing process.
7. DeLonghi ECP3420 – Top Quality Espresso Machine from a Top Brand
- Capacity: 37 ounces
- Pump Pressure: 15 bar
- Dimensions: 9.6" x 7.2" x 11.9"
- Weight: 10.55 pounds
DeLonghi is a top coffee makers brand that you can always trust to have a top-notch quality espresso machine that suits your needs. If you are shopping on a tight budget, their model ECP3420 will be a great pick for you.
This sleek and compact coffee maker will look good in your kitchen and also takes up little space on the counter. And it features a rapid cappuccino system that ensures no waiting time between cups.
The self-priming operation ensures that this espresso machine will be ready to use within a short time as it will require minimal preparation.
A two-tier drip tray design will allow this machine to accommodate taller cups as you will only need to remove the upper tray to adjust the height. Also, it comes with a removable water reservoir that is easy to refill and clean.
The warming plate seems to get a little too hot, but this does not affect the performance of the machine in any way and hence is not a deal breaker.
8. Capresso 304.01 – Small but High-Performer
- Capacity: 32 ounce
- Pump Pressure: 15 bar
- Dimensions: 9.2" x 7.2" x 13.2"
- Weight: 3 pounds
With a compact and lightweight espresso machine like this one by Capresso, you can make your favorite coffee brews easily from your small kitchen as it takes up almost insignificant space.
Despite its small size, it still a high-performer and it has a 32-ounce water reservoir capacity and 15-bar pressure pump that is more than enough to ensure you always get excellent extraction.
The illuminated on/off switch makes it easy and convenient to operate even in low light conditions. And with the exclusive coffee/steamer selector, you can also control both the steaming and brewing process to adjust the coffee strength to your liking.
Other things that make this one of the best espresso machines under $100 include the dishwasher-safe glass carafe and removable drip tray as they make cleanup easy and have a faster heating time.
This budget espresso machine will not brew as fast as other more expensive models, but you can be certain that it is faster than most others in the same price range. Also, although a longer steam wand would have been better, the one on this machine still works well enough.
9. Bella BLA13683 – Great Quality at a Bargain
- Pump Pressure: 5 bar
- Dimensions: 9.4" x 8.9" x 11.2"
- Weight: 4.76 pounds
Bella 13683 is the best affordable espresso machine for you if you are on the market for an under $50 coffee maker, and it is the cheapest model in our list.
This budget espresso machine offers you excellent quality and performance at a great bargain, and it will come with an easy pour glass decanter and drip-free spout to ensure easy and safe serving. And there is also a handy frothing steam wand for your lattes and cappuccinos.
With this Bella machine, you will not only make café-quality brews but also do it mess-free as it also comes with a removable drip tray that prevents accidental leaks and makes cleanup easy.
The removable permanent filter basket is also designed to be easy to secure and remove for cleaning afterward. And given the compact and space-saving design of this espresso machine, it will also take up little counter space.
Its 5-bar pressure is the lowest in our reviews, but it should still be enough to ensure quick and efficient extraction so that you always get great tasting espressos.
How to Buy the Best Budget Espresso Machines
There are many affordable espresso machines in the market as almost all the top brands like Breville, Gaggia and DeLonghi will have a budget model to cater to different market segments.
While this is a good thing because it means you will have plenty of options to choose from, it can also make things a little overwhelming.
However, to choose the ideal budget espresso machine, you only need to watch out for the following important things when shopping.
Your budget should always be the first factor to consider when shopping for one of these espresso machines. Although you are shopping for something affordable, this is a relative term because these machines are available in several price ranges. (under $200 | under $300 | under $500)
You can get a simple budget espresso machine for under $50 like Bella's model BLA13683 while others will cost as much as $300 or even more.
And so before you start shopping, you need to decide how much you are ready and willing to spend. But, note that the pricier the machine does not always mean the more versatile it will be or the better the quality.
Once you decide on your budget, the other important decision you need to make is the type to go for because there are different options available.
Typically, you will need to choose between manual, semi-automatic and automatic espresso machines, and each one will be suitable for different situations.
Manual Espresso Machines: For the coffee lovers that do not mind putting in some effort to make their cup of coffee, a manual espresso machine will be perfect.
Manual espresso machines give users more control over the brewing process, and they come in an attractive design that makes them almost as decorative as they are functional.
These are relatively pricier machines, but the quality of brew and taste makes them worth it.
Semi-Automatic Espresso Machines: Semi-automatic machines are designed to make the job easier than the manual ones. With these espresso machines, you will get control over the brewing as you would with a manual machine and the ease of use of an automatic espresso machine.
They are some of the most popular espresso machines, and they will produce great tasting and high-quality brews, but they are still not as easy to use as the fully automatic models.
Automatic Espresso Machines: If you are one of those coffee lovers that do not always have a lot of time to make coffee, a fully automatic espresso machine is your best bet.
With one of these machines, you not only get an electronic pump but also an automatic water delivery system to speed up the coffee making process.
These machines are even easier to use than the semi-automatic ones, but they will give you less control over the brewing process. And because they have more electronic parts and components, this also means they are more prone to breakages and will require more maintenance.
Buying Advice: For experienced baristas and staunch coffee lovers, nothing beats the authentic taste and quality of a manual espresso machine. However, if you are one of the many individuals that just want a fresh cup of coffee super fast without putting a lot of effort, an automatic espresso machine is your best buy while the semi-automatic machine will be ideal for those that want the best of both worlds.
Even as you shop for the best affordable espresso machine, you should not overlook its capacity as this will determine how convenient and useful it will be for you.
The amount of coffee that you take or the number of coffee drinkers in your household should help you determine the right capacity for you.
An espresso machine with a large water capacity is always the best pick as you will also not need to refill it very often.
Although budget espresso machines will generally have a smaller capacity, you should go for something with at least a 30-ounce capacity if you will be making coffee often. But a larger capacity machine like the 72-ounce Gaggia 14101 would even be better.
4. Pump Pressure
Pump or bar pressure is what produces the pressure that is necessary to force the steam through the coffee grounds to make coffee.
Although the higher the pressure the better the machine will be as it means faster and more efficient brewing, a typical espresso machine only needs 9 bars to work efficiently.
What this means is that pricier machines that produce more than 15 bars of pressure might not make a huge difference. Hence, something with at least 9 bars is often enough.
5. Size and Design
Few people can boast of having unlimited counter space in the kitchen. The few that have adequate counter space will still not want to clutter it with large espresso machines.
And so the size of the espresso machine matters a lot. You need to check the dimensions and ensure that the machine will fit the space that you have.
When it comes to the design, you will need to look at both the style and finish to ensure that they not only suit your tastes but also complement the space where you will place it.
6. Ease of Use and Cleaning
Even if you get the best quality espresso machine at the best price, it will still not work well for you if it is not easy to use. Because not everyone can be a professional connoisseur or barista, any machine that you buy should give you an easy time.
Automatic espresso machines are the easiest to use because you can get most of your favorite brews at the press of a button. However, even manual ones with clear directions can be quite easy to use.
Cleaning your espresso machine is also a crucial part of owning it, and so before you settle on any model, it should be easy to clean. Make sure that you know the process that will be involved in cleaning the espresso machine and how involving it will be before buying it.
You do not need to spend a small fortune to get an espresso machine that makes some great tasting coffee as there are many high-quality and affordable models in the market.
To find the best budget espresso machine for making your favorite coffees, you only need to watch out for things like capacity, ease of use and cleaning and the pump pressure.
The good news is that there are many great models currently in the market, and you will not even need to search a lot to find the perfect one for you as our in-depth reviews above provide 9 great recommendations.