Is there any beverage that captivates as many people around the world as an aromatic and luxurious cup of coffee? In fact, countless millions enjoy at least one cup of coffee every single day for both the distinctive flavor as well as the energy boost from the caffeine. Coffee is part of so many people’s normal routines. Some always drink a cup every morning before work. Some always drink a cup at the office or at church. Some people always offer a cup to visitors at their home. Coffee is an integral part in our lives!
Beyond the typical coffee consumer, there are those I would label as “coffee enthusiasts.” These are the people that demand more from their coffee than just your standard brewed “cup of joe.” These are the ones that spend hundreds or even thousands of dollars a year at coffee shops on espressos, lattes and cappuccinos. Does the preceding sentence describe you? If so, maybe it’s time to save that money spent at coffee shop, as well as save the time standing in line, and instead make your own gourmet cappuccino in the comfort of your own home.
|Product Name||Keurig Rivo Cappuccino and Latte System||Gourmia GCM6500 One Touch Automatic Espresso Cappuccino & Latte Maker||NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto Genio 2 Coffee, Espresso and Cappuccino Machine||Mr. Coffee ECMP1000 Café Barista Premium Espresso/Cappuccino System||Capresso 118.05 EC PRO Espresso and Cappuccino Machine|
|Weight||17 pounds||11 pounds||5.4 pounds||9 pounds||6 pounds|
|Product Dimensions||11.37 x 10.75 x 11.37 inches||8.25 x 14 x 10 inches||10.83 x 6.48 x 11.74 inches||12 x 14 x 12.25 inches||11 x 12 x 8 inches|
|More Info||Read Our Review||Read Our Review||Read Our Review||Read Our Review||Read Our Review|
What To Look For In A Cappuccino Machine
For those of us who frequent coffee shops and give looks of both admiration and wonderment regarding the skills of the barista, you should know that you don’t need to work at Starbucks to make heavenly cappuccinos, espressos and lattes at home. While the coffee shop barista puts on an enjoyable show as he or she is creating your beverage, it is much easier than it looks. All you need is the right equipment–specifically, a cappuccino maker!
In this comparison review, we will take a look at our picks for the top five cappuccinos machines under $250. The best cappuccino machines would include those that are easy-to-use, reliable, durable and consistent in yielding an exquisite cup of coffee in a timely manner. As more and more people consume gourmet coffee, consumers have placed high demands on modern-day coffee machines, and rightfully so, the manufacturers are responding with some stellar products. Let’s take a look!
Keurig Rivo Cappuccino and Latte System
Keurig is one of the most recognizable and trusted brands for coffee machines. Well known for it’s unique pod-compatible machines, Keurig delivers an outstanding product for the value with it’s Rivo Cappuccino and Latte System. Because of the pod system, the Rivo delivers an incredibly consistent espresso every time you use it. Unfortunately, the pod system can also be a negative for some users since you must use pods made specifically for this machine, but the pods available for the Rivo do create excellent espresso.
If speed and ease-of-use are the most critical aspects to you in regards to a cappuccino machine, then the Keurig Rivo dominates the competition. Simple to operate, most operations you will want to perform, such as brewing espresso or frothing milk, are as easy as the click of a button. With fifteen bars of pressure, the Rivo makes espresso in as little as sixty seconds! For those with busy or hectic schedules due to work, school, kids and just life in general, the Rivo may be the right machine to purchase from the standpoint of practicality.
The Rivo weighs seventeen pounds which is considerably heavier than the other machines in this comparison review. But it is solidly built and feels like a sturdy piece of equipment. Cleanup is a breeze with this machine as well as the frothing pitcher. Reviews of the Rivo would suggest that breakages are rare but if you do manage to damage the machine, Keurig is known for their legendary customer service.
With some cappuccino machines on the market commanding a price in the thousands, in terms of value, the Rivo is certainly priced as a budget machine. While it is not equipped with all the bells and whistles of higher-priced competitors, if you want an insanely simple cappuccino machine at a price that’s as appetizing as the coffee it brews, the Rivo is worthy of consideration.
Gourmia GCM6500 One Touch Automatic Espresso Cappuccino & Latte Maker
The Gourmia GCM6500 is no slouch when it comes to creating great espresso and cappuccino at an affordable price. The Gourmia is interesting in that, if judging by MSRP, it does not qualify for this comparison review of cappuccino machines under $250. But we all know that MSRP is rarely what you actually pay for a product. And in the case of the GCM6500, it regularly sells for less than half of the MSRP.
Sleek and attractive, the Gourmia GCM6500 offers one-touch capability that is straightforward to use by anyone regardless of technical proficiency. Espresso, lattes and cappuccinos are only a single button press away. Since it is compatible with Nespresso, you have the flexibility of using Nespresso pods in the GCM6500 should you desire to do so. Certainly, if you like the pods available from Nespresso or if you are already invested in Nespresso products, purchasing the Gourmia makes a lot of sense.
The coffee enthusiast will insist that their cappuccino and other designer coffee beverages be consistently perfect with every brew. The GCM6500 has a two-tank system that controls pressure and temperature; and since this is a pod-style machine, consistency is never a problem because there is no need to measure the amount of coffee grounds. Put in the pod, press a button and let the machine do it’s business.
The GCM6500 comes with a frothing system that is a pleasure to use and the ability to make regular and “grande”-sized beverages. One con of this machine might be the build quality as it is almost entirely made of plastic, which can be a turnoff to consumers that may prefer a beefier appliance. Overall, our view of the Gourmia GCM6500 is overwhelmingly positive and, for those looking for a cappuccino machine furnished with a great deal of automation, we expect that users “on the go” will especially adore the GCM6500.
NESCAFÉ Dolce Gusto Genio 2 Coffee, Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
The Dolce Gusto Genio 2 by Nescafe has brought to market a pod machine that allows the user to brew great coffee, espresso and cappuccino with consistently great results. Nescafe has been building exceptional coffee machines for many years and is highly regarded by the community. The Nescafe name carries respect as well as a great warranty and a top-notch customer service department.
An attractive machine with a silver finish, the Genio 2 not only makes delicious coffee but also makes for a nice, elegant appliance to put on display in any kitchen. It is set out-of-the-box to fifteen bars of pressure, which is generally regarded to be the most desirable level of pressure for extraction. The Nescafe Dolce Gusto Genio 2 has a generous volume of 45 ounces for the water tank which means less refilling.
The is a pod machine so you will need to purchase Dolce Gusto pods, but you do receive a few pods of various strengths with the machine. By far the most common complaint about this machine from users concerns the pods. I wouldn’t call the pods expensive but they are not the cheapest either. Though you may pay a bit extra for the Dolce Gusto pods, they do make coffees that taste amazing and smell incredible. There are nearly two dozen different varieties of pods for the the machine including hot chocolate–great for the kids!
The machine comes with a detailed instruction booklet which is a nice touch but probably unnecessary considering how simple this machine is to operate. Cleaning the Nescafe is simple and the manufacturer offers a few different cleaning products to help keep your machine in tip-top shape. Overall, the Nescafe Dolce Gusto Genio 2 is a cappuccino machine that delivers stunning results and is certainly deserving to be in this “top five” review
Mr. Coffee ECMP1000 Café Barista Premium Espresso/Cappuccino System
The ECMP1000 from Mr. Coffee is a feature-packed, but also no-nonsense, cappuccino machine built by one of oldest manufacturers of coffee machines in the United States. The ECMP1000 offers the usual one-touch performance that consumers expect with modern machines, with easy-to-use settings for single or double shot espresso. Frothing milk is an effortless and speedy task with the automatic frothing feature of the ECMP1000.
The machine with two detachable reservoirs–one for water and one for milk. Both reservoirs are a cinch to detach, fill and clean. The water reservoir, in particular, is spacious and holds a good volume of water to reduce the amount of time spent refilling it. Besides the reservoirs, cleaning the other components of the ECMP1000 is a breeze due to the lack of a hopper–no need to do weekly disassembly to clean out beans and grinds.
The Mr. Coffee ECMP1000 Café Barista Premium Espresso/Cappuccino System comes with a number or useful accessories that help the user make great cappuccino reminiscent of the designer coffees from your local shop. The ECMP1000 comes with both a single shot and a double shot filter, a removable drip catcher that is washable, a tamper and a scoop for measurement. As is typical for these types of machines, the ECMP1000 has the optimal amount of pressure: fifteen bars.
It is a good-looking machine with a modern style, offered at a price that is quite reasonable. For negatives, the ECMP1000 is a bit loud when in operation which could be problem for those making coffee while others are still sleeping. For those on a budget, the Mr. Coffee ECMP1000 offers a ton of value and gets very high marks from both user reviews as well as our editors.
Capresso 118.05 EC PRO Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
The Capresso 118.05 EC PRO is definitely on the upper end of the spectrum in terms of cost, barely meeting the $250 price limit for this comparison review. Though the price is more of mid to high-range, you do get a lot of notable features with the EC PRO, such as the advanced pump boiler system and the choice of two different filters–a double spout filter for novice users and a bottomless filter for the more advanced “home barista.”
A commercial-grade power frothing system allows you to create the ideal foamed or steamed milk necessary for an impeccable cappuccino or latte. The water container is detachable and is quite roomy with a capacity of 42 ounces. A tamper is included with the Capresso 118.05 EC PRO, though no tamping is required with the use of the double spout filter. A coffee scoop is also included but because to the modest diameter of the portafilter, using the scoop can be a a bit messy.
This machine is ruggedly built and is finished mostly in stainless steel, which is not only attractive but makes cleanup easy-as-pie. In terms of decibel ratings, the EC PRO is exceptionally quiet for a machine of this type–no hissing or wheezing sounds while running.
This machine is definitely one that allows the user to become more advanced with their coffee-making skills, due in large part to the inclusion of the bottomless filter. When used by a knowledgeable user, it can create a cappuccino or latte that rivals anything you would get at your local coffeehouse. For the connoisseur or for someone looking to step up his or her cappuccino game, the Capresso 118.05 EC PRO is a great entry point to the next level of coffee-making.
So Which Cappuccino Machine Under $250 Should I Purchase?
With so many outstanding choices for cappucino machines under $250, it is hard to choose the best one. In fact, it is impossible to choose the perfect one because it will depend on the user and his or her specific requirements as to which is the perfect fit. In this comparison of five machines, we placed the greatest emphasis on ease-of-use, reliability, consistency, durability and value. In the opinion of our editors, the best cappuccino/espresso machine that offers the greatest feature-set at a modest price is the Gourmia GCM6500 One Touch Automatic Espresso Cappuccino & Latte Maker [BUY IT!].