A morning-coffee is the first highlight of your day. But paying $5+ each morning for a barista to get your order (and name) isn?t quite as enjoyable. Investing in one of the best latte machines for use at home is the ultimate solution.
If you drink lotta lattes, a latte machine is one of the smartest kitchen additions you?ll ever make.
A Guide to Buying Latte Machines for the Home
A latte, or rather a caffe latte (the term latte itself actually translates to ?steamed milk?), is a popular beverage that has existed for nearly 175 years.
It most commonly made by using 2 fl oz of espresso, 3 fl oz of steamed milk, and a thin layer of foam. Just saying the term latte is enough to make you lick your lips in excitement. However, the thought of brewing it from scratch is never on the agenda at 7 AM.
A home latte machine does the hard work for you, leaving you to enjoy your brew in style. Still, it?s only possible if you choose the right machine for the home.
Why Buy a Latte Machine for the Home?
Over 150 million Americans drink coffee on a daily basis, with the average adult consuming 3.1 cups per day.
For individuals that drink exclusively in coffee houses, that means a weekly bill of over $100. Conversely, instant coffee drinkers do not get the great taste of a luxurious beverage touching their lips. A home latte machine provides the best of worlds.
A latte machine is better than daily coffee house visits for many reasons, including but not limited to:
- Save money in the long run as high-quality coffee beans cost far less than your store-bought brew.
- Save time as the latte machine creates the perfect beverage time and time again with minimal effort from you.
- Avoid added calories from syrups and other additions to aid your diet.
- Avoid the disappointment of baristas making the wrong order.
- Upgrade the kitchen with an eye-catching machine that looks ultra-stylish and classy at all times.
There?s no greater comfort than the knowledge that a beautiful latte is only ever a few minutes away. The latte machine is a great selling point when friends visit too. Better still, with the right model of a coffee machine, the benefits can last a lifetime.
Once you?ve made the switch, you?ll wonder how you ever survived before.
What Features Should Your Latte Machine Boast?
Home brewing facilities designed to replicate barista-quality beverages are more popular than ever. The first half of the decade saw a 29% growth in unit sales, and millions of additional homeowners have followed suit since 2015 too.
As such, there has been an inevitable increase in options on the market. Some are great. Some are not so great. An understanding of what to look for in a home latte machine is vital. Some of the key ingredients in the recipe for success include:
- Value for money ? Financial savings are one of the main incentives. But, you must factor in your consumption levels. Spending hundreds on an infrequently used gadget is na?ve.
- Brand name ? A quality manufacturer that has a reputation for long-lasting products, quality performance, and great customer care should be high on the agenda.
- Removable reservoirs ? Easy assembly, filling, and cleaning of water and milk compartments encourages great tastes for many years.
- Grind size setting ? An adjustable grind size dial encourages versatility. This lets you make lattes (and other coffees) with different brands and aromas.
- Quick action ? A great coffee takes time to brew. However, there is a need for speed during the morning rush. Good speed and semi-automatic action are the keys.
If there?s only one piece of advice you take from this guide, let it be this: buying an inferior product will haunt you in the long run. I bought a poor product and inevitably spent the next six months back at the coffee house. Since buying a better version, the visits are seldom.
What About Other Coffee Brewing Features?
Several of the best latte machines for the home also make other coffees. Cappuccinos and espressos are the most common. Are the additional features needed? It?s a matter of opinion.
True coffee loves may get some benefit from it. Likewise, families in which individuals have contrasting preferences can opt for this choice too. The key is to analyze whether the extra cost can be vindicated. The following questions provide clarity either way:
- Are experiments with other drinks likely?
- Do I have storage for several coffee beans and ingredients?
- Does changing beverage type require extra cleaning?
- Is it too complicated?
- Is the kitchen big enough for the size?
There is no single one or right or answer. The right option is one that works for you.
The Best Latte Machines for the Home
The sheer volume of options on the market is enough to bamboozle a barista. We?ve tested all of the most reputable latte machines across various price points to provide you with the answers you need. Here are five of the best latte machines for the home.
My rating –
The Mr. Coffee 3-in-1 home brewing machine is for lattes, espressos, and cappuccinos. The semi-automatic device is suited to all modern kitchens as it?s available in red, white, and silver. Crucially, the single-button control panel is a user-friendly option. That?s perfect for those ?still half-asleep? early mornings.
An automatic milk frother produces great results every time too ? this is one task I?ve forgotten many times over the months. This is a welcome feature for anyone that wants an easy brewing facility.
Easy maintenance is restricted to cleaning the frothing tube and clearing the removable milk and water reservoirs. Do this before leaving for work to avoid any stress or difficult stains. The benefits are evident in the taste as well as the consistency of the beverages time and time again.
Convenience isn?t limited to the performance of the latte machine. A 26? cord helps you avoid the struggle for power points. The 15-bar electric pump creates rich flavors without any hassle while the milk reservoir can be stored in the refrigerator to avoid waste and souring.
For a mid-tier price range unit, the coffee machine produces high-quality results from the first drink and for many years to come.
Pros and Cons:
|Available in red, white and silver colors||You can only clean the frothing tube, and clear the remaining milk and water that is left behind|
|User-friendly control panel|
|Automatic milk frother makes brewing easy|
|A 15-bar electric pump for rich flavor|
My rating –
The Barista Express turns beans into espressos within 60 seconds. Give it a few seconds longer, and a beautiful latte awaits. The Breville machine uses a four-step process in the creation of your beverage. The key feature is that it utilizes 19g-22g of coffee beans ? if you?ve ever tried the standard 11g hit that inferior products offer, it?s simply not enough.
Temperature control features bring precise extraction, while low-pressure infuser and manual steamer add the finishing touches. The hands-on approach replicates the barista feel very well. I personally find that this makes the brew feel all the more rewarding, although it?s not to all tastes.
The simple controls over grind size and filter size put you in control from the first brew, while the micro-foam milk texturing wand allows for barista-style creations. Then again, when it?s your morning brew, it?ll often be a simple pour focused on the taste alone.
Breville is a very respected brand in the industry, and the choice between manual and automatic settings ensures great value and versatility. Making a morning coffee? Stick to the automatic extraction while you get ready. Having friends over? Unleash your inner artiste.
The Barista Express is the midpoint of a range that includes the Bambino Plus and the Oracle. For value and function, the average user should find it as the most suitable.
Pros and Cons:
|Takes just 60 seconds to turn beans into espressos||Needs high maintenance|
|Easy to use|
|You can choose between manual and automatic settings|
My rating –
Sowtech?s Espresso Maker is an uncomplicated product. It?s compact design, 3.5 bar pressure, and single switch knob are conducive to easy morning brews. It?s suited to espressos of 1-4 cups. It boasts an easy-to-use frothing arm for adding the steamed milk for lattes (and cappuccinos).
The simple design is primarily aimed at users that know what they want. In most cases, that?s a simple espresso or latte to perk them up in the mornings. However, it comes with several key selling points ? easy cleaning, supported by the washable drip catcher. It is certainly among the best.
Sowtech is a reliable company that launched back in the 1990s. The reliable technology is best highlighted by the no temperature loss gauge. It allows for confident brewing and great tasting beverages, as long the ingredients are of high quality.
An ultra-stylish design that takes up minimal storage space is highly practical, making it ideal for studio apartments and student accommodation. However, the appeal extends to families, office kitchens, and more. It does have its limitations but is great at what it sets out to achieve.
The FDA-approved machine isn?t one for hosting due to low quantity limits. For a low-budget, no-thrills home brewing solution, though, it packs a more powerful punch than the price suggests.
Pros and Cons:
|Easy to use||Low quality limits|
|Cleaning is also easy|
|Stylish yet consumes less space for storage|
My rating –
EspressoWorks is a very reputable brand, and the 7-piece all-in-one coffee machine has everything needed to create not one but two beverages in as little as 45 seconds. This feature alone makes the machine, which can offer a single or double shot of espresso, very attractive to anyone in a morning rush.
In addition to the Thermoblock fast heating technology, the 15 bar pump pressure system and stainless steel milk frothing cup provide easy latte making. All parts are cleaned quickly and without hassle, while switching between single or dual pouring is easy too.
The stainless steel unit is one of the most popular on the market, selling over 10,000 units, and is loved by amateurs and baristas alike. The clear 1.25l water tank and 120V electric bean-grinder offer a convenient approach while the measuring spoon and tamper put the control in your hands every time.
A single dial to switch between espresso and steam works very well. A great design quirk is the ability to store the two cups (included) on top of the unit. I?ve spent many mornings searching for a cup. It?s a simple benefit, but one that can make a big impact on those rushed mornings.
The EspressoWorks isn?t the cheapest option on the market, but it?s far from the most expensive either. It provides a lot of functions and does them well.
Pros and Cons:
|Get two cups of coffee in just 45 seconds||Not so cheap, yet not expensive either|
|Thermoblock fast heating technology||Too many functions|
|15 bar electric pump|
|Stainless steel milk frothing cup for latte making|
|Smooth switch between single and dual pouring|
|1.25l water tank|
|120 V electric bean-grinder|
|Single dial to switch between expresso and steam|
|Storage for two cups on top of the unit|
My rating –
The Duo Temp Pro is another Breville-manufactured latte maker for the home. Its 15 bar pump and smart technology takes beans through a low-pressure bloom to a high-pressure extraction for great tasting brews. The manual control allows for a single and double shot.
Working with both pre-ground and freshly ground beans, the Breville Duo Temp Pro replicates barista-quality coffee through the precise extraction, auto purging features, and precise temperature. Like the Barista Express, it utilizes a dosage of 19g-22g. The balance between sweet and bitter is as close to barista coffee as you can get. As long as the ingredients are right.
The Duo Temp has a compact footprint while a 1600W element delivers the steam for latte art and enhanced flavors. From a practical standpoint, the maintenance indicators are key ? the days of overlooking drip tray clearances are a thing of the past.
Balanced tastes are promoted by the smooth extraction process while the Breville name is one you can trust to perform. The affordable price for a high-quality piece of equipment is pleasing too. For semi-automatic morning blends or creative latte art on a Sunday, the Duo Temp Pro is ideal.
The 61 oz water tank means you can make enough beverages for all the family.
Pros and Cons:
|15 bar pump||Not ideal for small families|
|You can manually select single or double shot|
|High quality machine|
|61 oz water tank for large families|
All five of the latte makers mentioned above sit at the top table of home machines for aspiring baristas and those that just want a great morning brew. However, the EspressoWorks all-in-one stands out as the best.
The ability to make two drinks at once is particularly important on busy mornings. I also love the versatility of manual and automated coffee making. It truly lives up to the all-in-one tag and is suited to all occasions.
Easy cleaning and maintenance only add to its practicality and value.