Coffer lovers all over the world are searching for the perfect coffee every time. It is not always convenient to go buy coffee from your favorite cafe and you miss having your cup of coffee which is the fuel to drive you forward. But you do not have to worry anymore because you can have your very own espresso machine in the comfort of your home.
Most people think espresso machines are expensive. Fear not, because we have researched and reviewed the five best espresso machines under 200 to make your coffee sips cheap.
Let’s find out what these machines have to offer and how to choose the one that suits your needs.
- 1 What makes a good espresso?
- 2 What kind of espresso machines are available?
- 3 Best Espresso Machine Under $200
- 4 Components needed to make an espresso
- 5 Cleaning and maintenance of the machine
- 6 Final words
What makes a good espresso?
Before deciding on an espresso machine you must understand how a true espresso is made. Most often than not, we buy espressos from coffee shops but it turns out to be bland and almost tasteless. A true espresso is thick, creamy and high in caffeine. The key to making a good cup of espresso coffee is to make sure not to mix too many blends of coffee. One type of blend (coffee beans) will work better in the espresso machine because each blend needs a different temperature setting. Mixing more than one blend will destroy the taste of all of them and you will end up having a weak final product.
What kind of espresso machines are available?
There are two broad categories of espresso machines:
- The steam-driven machines
- The pump-driven machines
There are further subdivisions when it comes to pump-driven machines:
Manual Lever Pump: Like the name suggests, these machines do not need electricity to run and the espresso has to pump out manually by hand.
Electronic Pump: These machines require you to set the temperature, according to which the machine will pump out your coffee. It uses electricity.
Semi-Automatic Pump: This type of espresso lets you have control over your coffee. It consists of a filter, a boiler, and an extraction pump. You can manually start and stop the extraction according to the concentration of coffee you want in your espresso. You will also have to manually fill the filter and tamp it.
Automatic Pump: This machine requires you to fill the filter with coffee beans but it will automatically turn on and off the extractor that brews the coffee. This allows little control over the concentration of beans in your brew as it automatically turns off when it is done brewing.
Super Automatic Pump: Does not let you lift a finger in the entire espresso making process. It grinds the beans, tamps them, boils the water, brews the coffee, pours it out and even cleans the waste automatically without requiring any human intervention. They are heavier on the pocket than the rest of the types.
Best Espresso Machine Under $200
|Short Reviews||Unique Feature||Pump pressure||Servings||Milk Frother|
|Breville BEC420TTN1AU||19 bars high-pressure pump||19 Bar||Single||Buy separately|
|Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista||Can make 3 types of brews||15 Bar||Single||Built-in|
|DeLonghi Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo||Centrifusion Extraction Technology||N/A||Single||Built-in|
|Aicook||Serving up to 4 people||3.5 Bar||Four||Built-in|
|CISNO||Portable, coffee on the go||15 Bar||Single||N/A|
The Nespresso Pixie has been selected for its compact size and sleek and modern outlook. It is only 11 cm wide and takes up very little space on your counter. The high-pressure pump that works at 19 bars is its most striking feature that will provide you with the brew from your dreams! The pump squeezes out the maximum flavor from the coffee beans and provides you with barista-style coffee.
Accompanied with high-end technology, it heats up to the ideal temperature required in 25 seconds. This is great because you do not have to wait for a long time for the machine to heat up first before you can start making your coffee.
- 19 bar high-pressure pump
- Compact, sleek design
- Heats up in 25 seconds
- Two capacities of coffee cups; espresso and Lungo
- Backlight to indicate when water tank is empty
- Automatic power off after 9 minutes of last use
Another striking feature is that it allows you to make two different capacities of coffees; espresso and Lungo. You can easily choose between the two with a one-touch button and programme the machine to customize the brew to your tastes.
However, a few users reported that water started leaking from the base after a few days of using the machine. The customer service is very responsive and they have issued replacements.
- High-pressure pump extracts maximum flavor from the beans
- Modern, aesthetically pleasing design with metal parts
- Quick heat up system
- Automatic turn off saves power
- Multiple capacities of cups
- Indicator when water tank is empty
- Users have reported that some pieces were faulty and water leaked from the base
- Does not come with a grinder or frother
The Mr. Coffee Cafe Machine has made it to our list due to its versatility. The machine makes three types of brews, Espressos, cappuccinos, and lattes. You can easily select which brew you want with the simple touch of a button. It also has the option of choosing a single shot or a double shot for your drink.
Moreover, the machine comes with a milk frother. This makes your milk foamy and makes your brew creamy and flavorful. You will not have to invest in this accessory separately.
The espresso machine is fitted with high end, smart technology to determine on its own the ideal amount of water and milk needed for a particular brew and extracts that much from the reservoirs. This reduces the hassle of measuring and pouring every time you need a quick cup of coffee.
- A 15 bar high-pressure pump
- One touch selection for the type of brew
- Milk Frother
- Automatic volume determination of water and milk
- Removable water and milk tanks
- Semi-automatic machine
The machine also allows you to easily remove the milk and water tanks so that you can refill them or store them in the refrigerator.
However, the espresso machine does not come with a grinder and you will have to buy a separate grinder to finely grind your coffee beans or the brew will not be flavorful.
- Milk frother is attached in the machine
- The frother has an adjustable knob to control the amount of foam
- High-pressure pump extracts flavor from the beans
- 3 different selections of the type of brew
- Removable parts for easy cleaning and storage
- The machine does not come with a grinder and a separate one has to be bought
This Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo machine is included in this list due to the technology it uses while extraction. The ‘Centrifusion Extraction Technology’ spins for up to 7000 revolutions per minute, blending the ground coffee beans in the water perfectly to produce a brew that is full of flavor!
This machine allows for a single serving but can produce multiple capacities of the serving. Allowing you to get 8oz and 1.35 oz., depending on the amount you feel like having.
Another striking feature of this espresso machine is the automatic blend recognition. It recognizes the Grand Cru blends and alters its programming according to the settings required by that particular blend. You do not have to change the settings for every blend every time because this smart technology does it for you!
- Centrifusion Extraction technology
- Single serving of coffee
- Automatic blend recognition
- Automatic power off
- Removable water tank
The machine also automatically powers off, saving energy after being left idle for a few minutes. This also prevents electrical and fire hazards.
However, a few users have complained that the machine does not heat up to very high temperatures that are ideal for making espressos.
- The new extraction technology makes the coffee flavorful
- Complimentary milk frother
- Automatic blend recognition saves time and reduces hassle
- Automatic power off saves energy and prevents electrical hazards
- Removable water tanks allow for easy cleaning
- Only a single serving at a time
- Does not heat up to very high temperatures
The Aicook Espresso has a highly functional design that is easy on the pocket and gets the job done. This machine is sleek and compact and produces more coffee than you would think its size allows it to. The machine comes with a built-in milk frother that quickly makes your brew creamy and foamy.
- 3.5 bar pressure pump
- Makes 4 cups of coffee at one time
- Built-in milk frother
- Drip tray
- Single switch knob for turning on and off
- 2-year warranty
The most striking feature of this machine is the ability to make 4 cups of espresso at one time easily. Any mishaps or faulty pieces will be covered under 2-year warranty (please check the manufacturer’s site for particulars).
However, the pressure pump is of a slightly lower pressure than what is ideal for an espresso but users have found this to be alright as the coffee it brews tastes very good.
- Makes multiple cups of coffee at one time
- Simple, compact design
- Very economical and budget friendly
- Removable parts for easy cleaning and storage
- Warranty covers damage and mishaps
- Low-pressure pump might not be suitable for some blends
- Grinder not included, must be bought separately
The CISNO electric espresso machine is included in our list because of its portability. It solves all your problems and you can easily have your coffee whenever and wherever you want! It is tailored such that it can easily fit into your cup or bottle holder and your backpack so that you can have your espresso on the go.
This espresso machine is operated using a simple lithium-ion battery that can be recharged easily. It also comes with a car charger so that you can charge your machine in the car while having coffee.
It also has a very powerful 15 bar high-pressure pump. The compact size does not compromise on the quality and flavor of your coffee and the high-pressure system allows for the flavor of the coffee beans to be fully extracted.
- 15 bar high-pressure pump
- Travel sized
- Works on rechargeable batteries
- Works with the car charger
- Makes 3 cups using one charge and room temperature water
- Makes 80 cups using one charge and hot water
It takes less than a minute to make a cup of coffee using preheated water, making this highly efficient and functional to use.
However, some users are dissatisfied with the amount of coffee it makes in one go. They find the quantity very less.
- Easy to carry around
- Two ways of charging make it very convenient
- High-pressure pump produces flavorful coffee
- Makes several cups on one charge
- Takes up to 5 hours to charge
- Makes a small amount of coffee
Components needed to make an espresso
There are three things that are very important while making an espresso. The grinder, the frother, and the tamper. We will explain below why and how each of them is used. Most machines come with these accessories but some might not, so you must know what accessories you require to make an espresso and then buy accordingly.
Grinder: Perfectly and evenly ground coffee is the key to making good espresso. Most espresso machines come with a grinder to grind the coffee beans. But if the machine you are buying does not come with a grinder then you must buy one separately. The more powerful the grinder, the better the grounded coffee.
Frother: A milk frothing pitcher or a milk frother is needed for foamy milk. If you prefer you milk foamy then you will need to buy this accessory separately as most machines do not come with this.
Tamper: A tamper is needed to evenly press your grounds. Pressing your grounds is crucial as it extracts the most flavor out of your beans.
Cleaning and maintenance of the machine
Espresso machines can be a bit difficult to clean and must be kept clean regularly for you to have fresh, clean coffee or else it will start tasting foul and cause multiple health problems. We have written below a short, common way to clean an espresso machine.
Clean the outside: Clean the outside of your espresso machine with a damp cloth or soap and water to prevent dust or grime from settling on it.
Clean the inside: The inside is very crucial to clean. Scrape away all remnants of coffee and coffee beans with a rough cloth and then run it through the water. It is advised to add a few drops of vinegar and then run the machine through the water to clean it spotlessly. However, make sure you clean the vinegar away thoroughly or it will leave a taste in your next cup of coffee.
Clean the grinder and frothing wand: Dust off extra beans and grounded coffee and wash the two accessories with water and dry them.
Disassemble and wash: A very good practice is to disassemble all the parts in your machine that can come out and wash them separately in a dishwasher or scrub them with soap and water. This act can only be done once or twice a month rather than daily.
Follow your machine’s instructions: Each machine comes with a set of cleaning instructions tailored to its requirements. Follow those instructions and your machine will always be as good as new and will not cause you any health or safety problems.
Buying an espresso machine can be a tedious task because you have to learn a lot about the machines before buying them. After a thorough research, we have picked the best coffee machines from top rated bands with the likes of CISNO, Aicook, DeLonghi, Breville and Mr. Coffee.
Now it’s time to declare the winner, but what if we have a winner for each of different needs. Well, all the above coffee machines are under 200 but the winner of this product roundup is Breville BEC420TTN1AUC. The coffee machine ready itself in just 25 seconds to prepare your favorite cup of coffee. You’ll get a complimentary gift of 14 capsules to prepare unique aroma every time.
When you’re on the go you don’t have time to prepare the coffee on the machine then you can go for CINSO portable espresso machine.
Do guests visit your place regularly? Don’t worry, now you can use the charisma of Aicook to prepare 4 cups of servings at a time. The built-in wand also allows you to serve the different taste of the guests. You can offer cappuccino and lattes.
We hope that our article served its purposes and now you can navigate through the market and form an informed decision.
If you found this information useful please share this article with your friends and family. We hope you have great cups of coffees for the years to come!