Enjoying a small glass of strong coffee can help you get through your day and can be the energy boost you need to get to work. Whether you work in a home office or need a small, affordable machine for your kitchen, the best espresso machine for under £100 can be the saving grace for your entire office.
In this guide, we’ll show you the best espresso machines you can get for just under £100. Especially if you want a more affordable machine, having an espresso machine can be inexpensive and a worthwhile investment for your home. If you choose a machine with high quality materials and reputation, it can last you and your family (or co-workers) for years. Although these cheap espresso machines usually have fewer features, they have enough to create a tasty and powerful espresso.
If you’re looking to buy an affordable espresso machine, in our in-depth reviews we’ve highlighted the features we’ve found to be important in choosing the right machine, such as water tank and bean hopper capacity, dimensions, pressure and important warranty information. From our comparison table to our buying guide, we hope this article will help you choose the best product for you and your inner coffee lover.
- KRUPS XP320810 Opio
- Krups Vertuo Plus silver espresso machine
- AICOK coffee maker
- Portable espresso machine STARESSO
- Sowtech espresso machine
- Cheap espresso machine – what to expect?
- Bean and water capacity
- Grinding settings
- Size and weight
- Our verdict
KRUPS XP320810 Opio
The KRUPS XP320810 Opio is our editor’s choice for the best espresso machine. The reason for this high distinction is not only based on the various features available with this machine but also on the durability of its base.
The Opio XP320810 from KRUPS allows you to prepare espressos the way you or your customers like them, regardless of the style. The specialities of this machine include coffee, espresso and cappuccino.
Using a simple ground coffee filling, the KRUPS XP320810 Opio also uses the milk frothing method of a steam wand, which is fairly standard for most coffees and is generally preferred by most coffee drinkers.
Backed by a 2-year warranty, the KRUPS XP320810 Opio can be easily used by both beginners and coffee experts. Thanks to a large round dial, the settings are easy to read and use, even for coffee and espresso beginners.
Whether it’s activating the steam function or easily filling the removable water tank under your kitchen tap, you can manoeuvre the machine with ease.
The KRUPS XP320810 Opio is also equipped to make two cups of coffee at a time, making it perfect for a home kitchen or small coffee shop.
With the style of a lever machine that is powered by 2200 watts, the KRUPS XP320810 Opio can also hold its own, with a water capacity of 1.5 litres.
- 1.5 l
- not specified
- 15 bar
- 15 x 13.5 x 10 inches
- Limited to 2 years
- steam nozzle, cup warmer, double dose, 1140 W power
Krups Vertuo Plus silver espresso machine
The Krups Vertuo Plus silver mini espresso machine is our second choice for the best espresso machine.
From features such as the energy saving mode if you forget to turn it on when you leave the house to its dishwasher safe ability with detachable and easy to clean parts, this machine is a great addition to any home or small café.
The Krups Vertuo Plus silver mini espresso machine is not only quick and easy to use, but it can also give you an affordable, yet high quality cup of espresso or lungo.
What sets this machine apart from other affordable machines on the market is the fact that it is compatible with Nespresso pods – and even comes with espresso cups and a pod holder. You can also take advantage of the side stand, which gives you plenty of storage space for your capsules.
The Krups Vertuo Plus silver mini espresso machine offers quite a powerful performance, with a pressure of up to 20 bar, which is the power typically used in a bar, restaurant or high-end coffee shop.
It’s also safe at home, with a 2-hour auto shut-off function and a compact design that doesn’t take up too much space on your (perhaps already small) kitchen counter. The Krups Vertuo Plus silver mini espresso machine also has a 0.7 FL oz. water tank so you don’t have to refill it too often.
- 1.8 l
- 1.3 oz and 3.5 oz
- 20 bar
- 5.9 x 12.8 x 9.8 inches
- Limited to 1 year
- energy saving mode, dishwasher safe, beverage quantity adjustment, capsule holder and espresso cups included, 1400 W power
AICOK coffee maker
Backed by a 2-year warranty, the AICOK uses state-of-the-art technology so that whether you’re serving family members, guests or coffee shop customers, you’re always serving hotter coffee and guaranteeing quality flavor.
No matter how strong or weak you like your coffee, you can actually take full control of the strength by selecting the regular or strong coffee grade.
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You can also take advantage of features such as 24-hour automatic programming, self-cleaning option, 1 to 4 cup setting and automatic shut-off (0 to 4 hours). These features make the AICOK a fully functional appliance and set it apart with unique details.
You can even set the temperature control!
With a commercial style permanent filter, you can get professional style coffee in a home environment. The makers of the AICOK use state-of-the-art technology for the various settings and ensure that this 12-cup coffeemaker can bring a simple espresso into the modern age, without sacrificing traditional flavor.
From its easy-to-read LCD display to its maintenance lights, the AICOK is very user-friendly. Whether you’re concerned about coffee making or maintenance, this machine will suit everyone.
- Water tank capacity
- Hopper capacity
- 12 tablespoons
- not specified
- 7.75 x 9 x 14 inches
- Limited to 3 years
- Self-cleaning, 24-hour programming, 12-cup carafe, brew strength adjustment.
Portable espresso machine STARESSO
The STARESSO is a great machine if you are looking for a slim, compact design that is easy to carry and store when not in use.
After choosing your favourite espresso and falling in love with it, you can take the STARESSO espresso machine with you wherever you go – no more watery espressos that don’t suit you!
All you need is access to hot water and milk!
It’s a great choice if you’re looking for a compact, portable machine that you can take with you on your travels, if you’re moving often or even if you want to go camping.
Not only does the STARESSO give you quality espresso and a way to froth milk in a package the size of a 20-ounce soda bottle, but it’s not the highest quality if you compare it to the other products in our guide today.
However, the STARESSO espresso machine certainly has its advantages – for example, it’s relatively easy to clean and use, which is great if you’re a coffee novice and don’t want to get into the various settings.
Unfortunately, the more you use it, the harder the pump becomes to use – so be aware of this possibility.
- 0.8 L
- 15-25 bars
- 7 x 7 x 20 cm
- Limited to 2 years
- nespresso and compact beans, BPA-free materials
Sowtech espresso machine
Despite being rated as our most affordable and economical option, the Sowtech espresso machine comes with our longest warranty – a limited lifetime warranty.
With features ranging from its 3.5 bar steam pressure to its high quality frothing function, the Sowtech espresso machine is certainly not designed with cheap quality in mind.
This espresso machine has other features that make it quite optimal for those looking for an affordable, high quality option. Not only does it maintain a constant and accurate temperature with total control, but it is also very easy to use – with just one button. No need to deal with complicated technology!
The machine also includes a filter, funnel, spoon, carafe and a 12 month warranty on all parts.
You can also make enough coffee for the whole family, with a capacity of four cups. You can also make different types and styles of coffee, from rich to creamy to mocha to caramel macchiato.
Not only will you appreciate the durability of its design, but its stainless steel decor will also fit in with any kitchen decor. The Sowtech espresso machine is also very easy to clean and maintain, with a removable drip tray for easy cleaning and a powerful milk frother that is easy to clean.
Although it’s a budget model, it’s still very powerful – up to 800 watts!
- 240 ml
- not specified
- 3.5 bar
- 9 x 7.2 x 13 inches
- limited lifetime
- washable drip tray, glass carafe included, stainless steel frame
Cheap espresso machine – what to expect?
Although the term ‘cheap’ might make you think you’re not getting quality, this is simply not the case.
An affordable espresso machine – even one as cheap as our budget choice, the Sowtech espresso machine – has qualities that help to keep its standard high and can compete with more expensive and expensive espresso machines.
Espresso machine maintenance
Knowing how to take care of your espresso machine is important information that you should not only be aware of, but also really care for and follow the instructions.
Of course, every espresso machine is different and unique when comparing how to maintain and clean it. However, when it comes to the majority of general espresso machines on the market, the maintenance practices don’t vary much from each other.
To help you adopt some beneficial maintenance practices, here is a well thought out video guide:
Features to consider when buying the best espresso machine for under £100
Before buying the best espresso machine on the market at an affordable price, it can be helpful to make a decision based on its various features.
To help you distinguish between the important and less important features, here are the different features you need to know about:
Bean and water capacity
If you intend to serve a ton of coffee to a large number of people at once, you’ll need to pay particular attention to the bean and water capacity in the machine, as this will directly determine how many cups of espresso you can make at one time.
For example, if you need a machine that can produce several cups of espresso, you will need a machine with a large water capacity, such as the KRUPS XP3208 Opio, which has a water tank capacity of 1.5 litres.
The grind settings can dictate the types of espresso or coffee that can be produced. With espresso machines, however, there are usually not many grind settings, as you only need normal espressos for an espresso machine.
Take a look at the description to check the different types of coffee that can be made with the base of these espresso machines.
For example, the Sowtech espresso machine is capable of making a wide variety of coffee drinks, such as caramel macchiato, espresso con panna, mocha, latte, cappuccino, and an ice cream float coffee, as well as many others.
Ease of frothing
The quality of the espresso is not the only important quality of these machines. You need to have a product that is backed by a high quality milk frother. This simple feature can actually dictate the overall performance of the machine.
If your machine’s frother has a rubber cover on the outside, this can be a sign of a poor performing frother. Most high quality machines are equipped with adjustable milk frothers. This gives you the ability to work at a comfortable angle that allows you to work in different positions depending on what other machines you have on the counter.
Size and weight
The size and weight of the espresso machine can also have an impact on your decision. If you want a machine that won’t make a dent in your countertop and can be lowered and raised from a cabinet onto your kitchen display, you’ll want something lighter.
Although the weight of most of the products featured here is not specified in their description, the dimensions are listed, which is an important number to check to see if the product will fit in your kitchen space.
Especially if you are not a professional barista, you will definitely want to invest in a “beginner’s espresso machine” that will still be able to produce complex and tasty patterns.
This is an important feature that you should definitely check before buying. It is quite easy to compare products, you can do your own research by looking at customer reviews of different products or you can look at the speed of start-up.
Some models are built in such a way that breaking down the espresso grounds is as simple as pressing a button, while others are a little more complicated to set up.
Number of shots
If you’re buying a machine for your home with only two to four people or if you’re buying a quality, affordable machine for your small coffee shop, knowing the shot capacity of the espresso machine can also make a huge difference.
From the number of shots – usually measured at single or double capacity – to the capacity of the cup, you will need to consider this number.
If you’re going to invest in a professional espresso machine, you’ll want it to be built with durable, quality materials. From the quality of its materials to the way it’s built – and whether there are replaceable parts – all of these things are important in assessing its durability.
You can also ask yourself – if replacement parts are available – whether they are really worthwhile (or whether you would rather buy a new machine).
For espresso machines, whether they are expensive or economical, the boiler can be another deciding factor.
Typically, these machines are equipped with one of three different boilers, designed in aluminium, brass or stainless steel. What is the difference between one and the other?
Stainless steel is more resistant to corrosion, but it is much more susceptible to bacteria!
Aluminium, on the other hand, will be one of the most affordable. However, cheap is not a good material. From the possibility of easy corrosion to susceptibility to bacteria, aluminium may not be a good idea if you want to invest in a machine that is easy to maintain.
Brass boilers in an espresso machine are the best to invest in. However, they are also usually the most expensive. As far as bacteria and corrosion are concerned, they perform optimally.
A simple maintenance machine is another feature to look for – especially if you plan to use the machine quite often – you don’t want to stop serving coffee to do maintenance every week or so!
Cleaning and maintenance can be simple if your machine is of high quality. Investing in quality can really make a difference.
Whether it’s a one-year limited warranty for the ChefWave Kava mini espresso machine or a lifetime limited warranty for our budget choice, investing in a long-term warranty can save you money in the long run.
Tips for perfect espresso
Even if you have one of the best espresso machines, you still need to know how to make a good cup of coffee.
To help you, here are some tips to keep in mind:
You should do your best to keep the machine clean and tidy, especially the filter holder.
Preheating the machine and the cup can make a huge difference to the quality of the espresso.
Grind the coffee beans just before making the espresso, which can help to maintain freshness.
For more tips and tricks, check out this video on espresso theory :
If you decided to skip our entire guide, here’s the summary of our final verdict:
The KRUPS XP3208 Opio is our editor’s choice thanks to its extra, well-thought-out features, such as its steam nozzle, cup warmer and double shot capacity, which set it apart from other machines on the market. This 15 bar machine comes with a 2 year limited warranty.
The ChefWave Kava mini espresso machine is our next best Nespresso machine for under £100. From its 20 bar pressure to its various features such as the ‘set it and forget it’ energy saving mode, dishwasher safe, drink quantity adjustment, as well as its capsule holder and included espresso cups, this 1400W machine is high quality at an affordable price.
The Sowtech espresso machine is our economical choice. Let’s face it, you’re here to save money and get top quality, so how about a limited lifetime warranty? Other features of this espresso machine include its washable drip tray, included glass carafe and stainless steel frame.
We hope this guide has helped you choose the best espresso machine under £100 for you and your home or small cafe.
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