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Best coffee machines on the market in the UK

Looking for a coffee machine, but not sure where to start? Here’s your go-to guide

The Salter Espressimo Barista-style coffee machine is a versatile little coffee maker with a price tag of just £39.99 from Robert Dyas

With more of us working from home than ever before, the morning coffee fix from our favourite café can feel like nothing more than a fond memory. But quality coffee on demand doesn’t have to become a rare treat. Invest in a good espresso machine for your home and you’ll not only benefit from taking a much-needed desk break, you’ll also be able to enjoy barista-quality coffee – not to mention the delish aroma – with a touch of a button, or two.

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For the real coffee aficionados, take a look at our guide to making your own at-home coffee station, and enjoy the cafe experience at home.

Read on for our guide to the best coffee machines on sale in the UK, as well as what to look for before you make your purchase!

Which coffee machine should I buy?

Before you rush out and buy your spangly new machine, think about which type of coffee maker will best suit your needs. To grind or not to grind? That is the question.

If you’re a minimal fuss kinda coffee drinker, a mess-free pod machine could be for you. These machines have become increasingly popular for home use as they are compact, quick to use and just so convenient – simply pop in a compatible capsule, press a button and ‘hello’ coffee. You can pick them up fairly cheaply too.

With so much convenience there are inevitable drawbacks. Coffee pods are more expensive per cup compared to ground and bean coffee machines, and individually packaged pods create a lot of waste, so they’re not the greenest choice. Having said that, many of the major coffee companies have now introduced planet-friendly compostable or recyclable coffee pods so look out for those if you’re in the market for a pod coffee machine.

Best coffee machines in the UK for 2021

These seven brilliant coffee machines range in price from just £39 to our splurge buy at £175, so there’s sure to be one to suit your counter space, coffee taste and budget.

1. Budget barista machine: Salter COMBO-7098 Espressimo Barista Style 870W Coffee Machine, Black & Silver, £69.99, Robert Dyas

Salter COMBO-7098 Espressimo Barista Style 870W Coffee Machine with 200W Grinder, Black & Silver, £69.99

Size: 30cm H x 16.5cm W x 23.5cm D

Water capacity: 1 litre

The low-down: British company Salter has come up with a nifty little espresso maker that is a doddle to use. A perfect choice if you like ground beans, don’t want to spend big and are happy with the basics. This is great coffee and frothy milk at a price tag of under £40. Unlike many coffee machines, this 5-bar pump pressure model has a built-in water tank so it’s less bulky on your benchtop too.

Features we love:

  • Professional design will suit all kitchen schemes
  • Comes with a tempered glass cup, measuring spoon, and removable drip tray for easy cleaning
  • Handy milk frother attachment is great for making longer drinks such as lattes and cappuccinos
  • Compact design is space-saving – perfect for a kitchen countertop that’s already crammed!

Buy it now

2. Easy to use coffee machine: Dolce Gusto by De’Longhi Piccolo, XS EDG210.B Pod Coffee Machine, Black, £39, AO

Dolce Gusto by De'Longhi Piccolo, XS EDG210.B Pod Coffee Machine, Black, £39, AO

Size: 25.3cm H x 16.7cm W x 31.9cm D

Water capacity: 0.8 litre

The low-down: Although the price of this compact pod machine is at the lower end of the spectrum it has the maximum 15-bar pump pressure to create barista-quality coffee with a ‘luxurious velvety crema’. This popular machine has many online reviewers impressed with the café-at-home taste and its simplicity of use.

Features we love:

  • All the coffee grinds stay in the pods so there is virtually no cleaning involved (hoorah!)
  • Eco-mode feature turns off the machine after 5 minutes of inactivity, giving it an A rating in energy consumption
  • A wide range of coffee choices available, plus cold drink options
  • Dolce Gusto pods can be recycled in a special pink bag provided by the company that you take to a CollectPlus point
  • Descale warning feature is a nice touch

Buy it now

3. Professional coffee machine: 15 Bar Pro Espresso Machine, £99.99, VonShef

15 Bar Pro Espresso Machine, £99.99, VonShef

Size: 30cm H x 24cm W x 27cm D

Water capacity: 1.5 litre

The low-down: It’s not only the styling of this espresso machine that makes it look like a professional piece of equipment, it’s the features and functionality too. We’re talking cup warming grill on the top, milk frothing wand and steam button to make lattes, cappuccinos and hot chocolate. Plus, there’s the flexibility of coffee varieties this machine offers.

Features we love:

  • The simple control panel is super easy to use
  • Choose between one cup, two cup or manual options, to suit your preferences
  • Washable/reusable stainless-steel filter that’s dishwasher safe
  • 2-in-1 measuring spoon and tamper included
  • Great value espresso machine for the features you get

Buy it now

4. Colourful coffee machine: Tassimo Bosch My Way2 Pod Coffee Machine, Cream, £79.99, JD Williams

Tassimo Bosch My Way2 Pod Coffee Machine, Cream, £79.99, JD Williams

Size: 29cm H x 23cm W x 32.5cm D

Water capacity: 1.3 litre

The low-down: This pod machine is available in four colours but the cream is a distinct nod to the 70s. However, there’s nothing retro about its features. The My Way 2 has an intuitive touch display to set the strength, temperature and size of your drink and you can whip up espressos, cappuccinos, tea, hot chocolate and more.

Features we love:

  • Compatible with a range of cup sizes
  • Built-in Brita Maxtra water filter is designed to improve taste and prolong machine life by reducing limescale build-up
  • ‘My favourite’ memory function allows you to save up to four different settings
  • Easy cleaning – brewing takes place within a T-DISC capsule and the system is cleaned after each drink with steam
  • 70+ drinks from 11 brands such as Costa, Kenco and L’OR

5. Easy espresso machine: Lavazza A Modo Mio Tiny Espresso Coffee Machine, White, £59, AO

Lavazza Tiny 18000432 Pod Coffee Machine, White, £59, AO

Size: 24.6cm H x 12cm W x 29cm D

Water capacity: 0.75 litre

The low-down: Lavazza’s most compact espresso coffee machine, aptly named the Tiny, is a stylish streamlined pod machine weighing just 2.7kg. It’s ideal if kitchen workspace is at a premium or in a home office for a convenient coffee while on a Zoom call! It’s the dream machine if size, speed and simplicity are on your caffeine hit list.

Features we love:

  • Simple one-button control
  • Water heats up in a super speedy 25 seconds and it stays hot (the Thermoblock Heating System keeps it at just the right temperature)
  • Adjustable cup rack with two heights
  • Designed to use Modo Mio Compostable capsules, which are an eco-friendly alternative to plastic pods
  • Easy clean removable cup rest and dishwasher-safe parts

Buy it now

6. Sleek coffee machine: Magimix Nespresso Vertuo Next Coffee Maker, White, £149.99, Lakeland

Nespresso Magimix Vertuo Next Coffee Machine, White, £149.99, Lakeland

Size: 31.4cm H x 14.2cm W x 39.2cm D

Water capacity: 1.1 litre

The low-down: The latest release from Nespresso by Magimix is this stylish-looking pod machine made from 54 per cent recycled plastic, designed to make espresso and lungo (long coffee). For all of its features this machine is sleek and compact with five different cup heights, 23 coffee blends and recyclable pods. Available in four colours.

Features we love:

  • Nespresso’s patented ‘Centrifusion technology’ spins the capsule to brew a rich, smooth cuppa
  • Drink length is selected automatically by reading a barcode on each compatible pod
  • Automatic power-off after 2 minutes to save energy
  • Easy to use with one-touch brewing
  • It’s not just a coffee machine, it’s a cool gadget too! Connect to wi-fi and Bluetooth to auto-update its technology (not to operate the machine remotely)

Buy it now

7. Vintage style coffee machine: Swan Nordic SK22110WHTN Espresso Coffee Machine, White, £175.98, OnBuy.com

Swan Nordic SK22110GRYN Espresso Coffee Machine, White, £175.98, OnBuy.com

Size: 31cm H x 19.4cm W x 28.4cm D

Water capacity: 1.2 litre

The low-down: If you love retro appliances this is the coffee machine for you. Swan has designed a good-looking Scandi-style machine with attractive dials and wooden accents to provide an authentic ‘café-athome’ feel. A great feature of this machine is the double spout design enabling you to prepare two coffees at the same time, perfect for coffee-loving couples. Available in white, blue and grey.

Features we love:

  • Includes a milk frother. The steam pressure control enables you to create your froth just how you like it
  • 15 bars of pressure to create a lovely crema layer
  • Use any variety of ground coffee you like to make espresso, flat white, latte and cappuccino
  • Professional spoon and coffee presser will make you feel like a real barista!

Buy it now

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This is a digital version of a feature that originally appeared in HomeStyle magazine. For more inspirational home ideas, why not subscribe today?