Best Espresso Machine Under $300 | Expert’s Buying Guide

Coffee has been a consistent and irreplaceable part of our lives for ages. It’s the first thing you think of in the morning, a great excuse for a social gathering, and overall a great drink with many benefits. But, if you want to make more than an ordinary cup of coffee, you need a good machine. To make espresso in just any machine won’t do, though. Don’t worry; there’s no need to invest too much money to get the right flavor.  All you have to do is find out what the best espresso machine under 300 is, right here.

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Top Five Recommended Espresso Machine Under $300

Best Espresso Machine under 300

The best espresso machine under 300 will make sure your coffee making experience is nowhere near hard. And that’s just what this one does. It’s suitable for those who don’t have much experience with using coffee machines because it’s pretty straightforward and easy to use.

It has touch buttons which allow you to customize the type of coffee you’re making. That’s what really makes it the best; you can choose your preferred brew and enjoy your coffee just the way you like it, without any troubles.

There is a milk frother included, and it is automatic. That means that you won’t have to go through the trouble of frothing the milk yourself; it will be done for you. It makes the best froth, regardless of your preferred drink. This is a rarity since automatic frothers often make the milk bubbly.

Thanks to the frother, you don’t need to stick to just espressos. You can make high-quality lattes and cappuccinos too.
For more convenience, the milk tank is removable, and so it’s easy to remove any excess of milk.

There are single and double shot options, and your espresso is ready within minutes. The design is elegant and sort of cute, making it a nice addition to any kitchen. There is a measuring cup with a tamper included, as well.

Pros

  • Excellent automatic milk frother
  • Elegant design
  • Single or double espresso shot option

Cons

  • The sensors can be too sensitive
  • It takes practice to properly work the machine

Breville BNV220CRO1BUC1Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine

Best Espresso Machine under 300

Who said that a machine needed to be really expensive in order to produce rich tasting coffee consistently? The Vertuo does that every time, without any hassle or problem. But the best espresso machine under 300 does it for half the price!

It’s also very quick and doesn’t need a lot of programming. There’s a barcode on the capsule which does the work for you, so you don’t need to waste any time on the settings menu. The capsules it accepts need to strictly form the Nespresso Vertuo line, though. But those capsules are of rather good quality as they don’t even need to be taken out after use.

That’s because the machine can hold up to 20 capsules before it needs to be emptied out. All of this is thanks to the integrated waste bin where the machine throws the capsules automatically.

What might put some users off is that the machine is louder than most of its competitors, but it’s not really that noticeable? You also won’t get a scalding hot cup of espresso, but will instead receive a warm cup.

On the one hand, the coffee could definitely come out hotter, but on the other, this way you can drink it right away, without having to wait for it to cool down.

The machine accepts different roasts and flavored options which leaves a lot of room for experimentation and figuring out what you like.

That’s why it’s most suitable for inexperienced coffee makers.

Pros

  • Easy maintenance
  • Consistent taste
  • Excellent durability

Cons

  • Rather loud
  • Coffee doesn’t come out as hot as it could

Delonghi EC680M DEDICA Espresso Machine

Best Espresso Machine under 300

For those looking for an extremely compact machine, this is the one for you. It takes up next to nothing in the kitchen, and it is easily transportable because of its weight. These sorts of machines are perfect for those with limited kitchen space (and we all know how tiny most apartments today are).

Its size requires the use of smaller cups, but normal sized coffee cups can be used to if you remove the drip tray. On the other hand, it’s the perfect opportunity to buy little espresso cups. They’re great for completing the unique experience of drinking espresso.

There is also a milk frother included, which means that you won’t have to stick to just the espresso. You can also make things like cappuccinos and lattes. With this machine, you’ll also get to brew espresso pods. What’s more, it’s possible to pull one or two shots of espresso at the same time.

The heat up time is very fast, and your cup of espresso will be ready in just a couple of minutes. The machine is even equipped with a cup warmer, ensuring your drink will stay warm even if you decided to drink it later.
Overall, it’s perfect for someone who hasn’t used a coffee machine much or ever before. It’s great for improving your skills.

Pros

  • Milk frother included
  • Cup heater
  • Can pull up to two shots of espresso at the same time

Cons

  • No grinder
  • Can be an unbalanced cause of the size

DeLonghi EC702 Espresso Maker

Best Espresso Machine under 300

If you’re on the lookout for a durable and low maintenance espresso machine which delivers a rich taste every time, you’re in the right place. The machine is powerful and able to handle the tasks you give it with ease. This is thanks to the pump which is driven at 15 bars.

It also self-primers automatically and has a handy water level indicator. That makes it more convenient when you’re refilling the tank as you will always know just how much you’re getting. It features a filter holder, and that means you get to use your own pods or ground coffee.

A frothier is included as well, which means you don’t have to stick to just espressos. The frothier is excellent for a machine of this caliber, and will not disappoint you or any latte you make.

The water tank is removable and rather big. This is good because of two things. First, it’s easy to clean since you can remove. The possible coffee stains will be gone in no time. Second, you’ll be able to make more espressos as once. This is great for anything you have company, or if you live in a bigger household.

One important thing to remember is not to keep the appliance in any place where the water could freeze. This will most likely make your machine not work properly.

Pros

  • Easy maintenance
  • Great milk frothing
  • Two filters

Cons

  • Can have leakage problems

Flair Espresso Maker – Manual Press

Best Espresso Machine under 300

This just might be the most unique espresso machine you can find on the market. That’s primarily because of its design. It’s not something you come across every day, and it’s not something you forget easily.

It’s a little difficult to use at first, but it’s not hard to get used to, and you will get the manual with it, which should clear some things up. The Flair requires a slightly coarser grind for the best results. If you’re having troubles using it, that might be the issue.

This machine is bound to give rich tasting espressos consistently, but only after you master using it. It’s not as easy as just pushing a button; you need to be the part of the brewing process. That’s why this espresso maker is most suitable for experienced users.

The crema is also thick and rich, contributing to the authentic espresso taste we all year for.

Pros

  • Consistent rich flavor
  • Durable
  • Unique design

Cons

  • Takes a while to master

A short Buying Guide for the Best Espresso Machine under 300

Now that you’ve seen what the best espresso machines are let’s see why they’re so amazing. They have most if not all the features you should look for in an espresso machine.

It’s important that you read through them because they will help you determine whether you’ve got the right machine for you or not.

Types of Espresso Machines

  • Semi-automatic Espresso Machines

This is, by far, the most common type of espresso machines. That’s because it’s easy to use while still delivering authentic espresso taste every time. There are a lot of manual parts to it, which means the user can stay involved with the process of brewing while it is happening.

On the other hand, the pump is electric, and the machine does all the hard parts on its own.

These machines are also very flexible. That means that you can choose the fineness of the grind, the volume, and the pressure. This opens the door for creating that cup of coffee which is ideal just for you. Some models also have the option of remembering programmed coffees so you won’t have to remember the recipe for your ideal espresso on your own.

The brewing process isn’t hard at all. You just need to take off the portafilter and put in the beans. Remember to check if the tank has enough water beforehand, though. Once that is done, put the portafilter back on the machine and press the start button. In just a span of a couple of minutes, you’ll get you an espresso.

It might take some practice to get the process just right, but it will feel like a breeze after a few times. That’s why these machines are suitable for anyone, regardless of their skill.

What’s more, they don’t take up a lot of space and can be placed in the kitchen discreetly.

  • Manual Lever Espresso Machines

We’ve all seen those vintage movies where the coffee machines look impressive and require a human hand to be properly operated. People who’ve lived in that age often say the coffee was much better then, too. Well, for a true coffee lover who’s willing to put in the effort, those machines still exist.

Though, the mechanisms inside are very modern. For anyone with an inner barista and a high set of skills, the manual lever espresso machine is perfect.

The brewing process is easy for the most part. Just like with the semi-automatic espresso machine, you’ll need to fill up the tank and remove the portafilter. Next, put in the beans, then put back the portafilter. This is where it gets tough. You need to pull down the lever steadily to extract the flavor and make your authentic espresso.

It takes a lot of practice, but after you’ve perfected it, your coffee will taste amazing.

The only thing that might be considered a drawback is that you can’t really choose the type of beans you’re putting into it. You’ll need to use whole beans and grind them yourself. Though, most people prefer it this way because it allows them to be part of the brewing process from the beginning to the end.

The design of these babies is breathtaking and will take you back to an era long-gone, which is why they’re so appealing to the public. What’s more, these machines aren’t that big and don’t take up a lot of space. The price is rather high though, but it’s worth it for a true coffee lover and enthusiast.

  • Super Automatic Espresso Machines

This is the type of machine anyone can use. That’s because it operates on the press of a button. You don’t need any skill in order to use it, but be aware that you won’t get the same taste as with other types of espresso machines. The taste is fine, but it might not be able to satisfy those searching for an authentic espresso.

Though the machine is rather simple from the outside, the mechanisms are much more complicated. This is because the brewing process happens on the inside. The machine has built-in mechanisms which do everything you otherwise would.

Once you press the button, the machine will start brewing your coffee, then dump out the used beans into a waste bin also located inside. It doesn’t leave up much to the user.

Some models are suitable for more than just espressos. They have built-in steam wands, or they operate on a milk froth system. That means you can make lattes and cappuccinos, too. The automatic froth skills vary from model to model, but they’re not that impressive. Far from being bad, it’s just that they lack the human touch.

You can also program your machine to certain things. For instance, you can set the grind fineness, the volume, or the water temperature. That allows you to customize your drink a little, though not as much as with the semi-automatic machine.

What to look for in Espresso Machines

So you’ve seen the three main types of espresso machines, and now the question is “what do I pay attention to?” It’s easy to get lost in the numbers and 5-star reviews online, but it’s important to focus on two things when it comes to getting the best espresso machine under 300. Those are:

  • Build Quality

Build quality is the first thing you should look for when you’re considering a certain espresso maker. Most people don’t look at the design and go straight for the features, but the design can tell you a lot about the machine if you look closely enough. What material is it made of?

The two most common materials used in the makings of espresso machines are stainless steel and plastic. Stainless steel is usually a sign of better quality, but that doesn’t mean plastic isn’t. As long as it’s not cheap and flimsy, it will be durable.

Some models even use the mix of stainless steel and plastic. In the end, it all comes down to what you prefer.
You can be sure that the price will correspond to the build quality most of the time.

  • Usability

There’s no use buying an espresso machine with a great build quality if it doesn’t offer a lot of features. A good way to end up with a usable machine is to opt for the type you want first, and then narrow down your choices. Look at what the average machine offers in your price range, and pick your ideal model.

Another thing you should do is pay attention to the drip tray. Though it may sound silly, it is what avoids the messes in the kitchen and makes using your espresso machine more enjoyable. Check if it’s big enough, and make sure it’s adjustable or removable.

Conclusion

As you can see, there is the best espresso machine under 300, no matter what you may have thought. Which one you choose depends on you, but the important thing is that now you know how. Remember the few pieces of advice you read here, and you should be ready for your next shopping trip. Soon you’ll be able to enjoy that authentic espresso every time you crave it. Enjoy!

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