Hello my fellow coffee aficionado, You realize you cannot spend a day without a cup of coffee but you find it too costly to buy it from your local coffee shop. The best way out is to buy your own coffee maker and prepare your favorite beverage right from the comfort of your home.
The good news is that you certainly can. We have gone through a great deal of trouble to find you the best espresso machines under $300 that are easy to use, sleek in design, easy to clean, versatile and are capable of delivering the thickest, richest flavors.
We will provide you with in-depth reviews of our top ten picks and later with a useful guide that can help you make an informed choice as to which particular brand or model of espresso maker to take home. First, however, let’s appreciate a few benefits of espresso machines.
Benefits of the Best Espresso Machine
- Espresso machine is highly convenient due to portability and accessibility
- It is cheaper in terms of initial as well as output costs
- Coffee expertly made at home with an espresso machine tastes better
- Automatic espresso machines do not require any skills to use well
- You will enjoy tons of health benefits since you can drink the recommended amounts of coffee daily
- You can use this kitchen appliance to make and enjoy different coffee drink preferences
Top 10 Best Espresso Machines Under $300
We have carried extensive research on the best espresso machines retailing for under $300 on popular online retail outlets and compiled reviews of the top ten best value and best performing models.
Nespresso Pixie Espresso Machine by De’Longhi Review
De’Longhi is a popular and reputable brand in the world of coffee machines. The Nespresso Pixie Espresso machine is one product of De’Longhi you will love. This device boasts of a 19-bar high-pressure pump, which guarantees a barista style outcome by unlocking the delicate flavor of each coffee capsule. This machine is specifically designed for use with espresso capsules.
Nespresso Pixie delivers a fast heat-up system that achieves the ideal temperature in a paltry 25 seconds. It then turns off automatically after 9 minutes in order to save energy. For versatility, this espresso machine features one-touch buttons with 2-cup capacities (Lungo and espresso) that you can reprogram to custom volumes. The buttons are backlit to provide ease of use.
Along the sides of the machine, you will see red backlights that light up to let you know when the 2.4oz tank requires refilling. Its folding drip tray is designed to accommodate various cup sizes for your convenience.
If you choose to buy this machine, you will receive a welcome set with a wide range of espresso capsules with unique aroma profiles. The Nespresso Pixie Espresso Machine has additional features you will only appreciate if you get the chance use it.
- Saves time because of fast, 25-second heat up system
- Automatically turns off in 9-minutes to save energy
- Red backlight indicators on sides serve as alert system prevent harmful dry heating
- Single-touch buttons are backlit and easy to use
- High-pressure pump delivers best results
- Sturdy design and compact dimensions with 2-color variations complement every kitchen
- Works only with espresso capsules
- Compared to others in its class, the Nespresso Pixie is a bit louder and messier during operation
- The machine may be easy to use but does not seem to filter properly
Mr. Coffee Café Barista Premium Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
A great espresso machine under 300 bucks that is easy to use and enables you to create coffeehouse-quality espresso drinks just as the professional is Premium Espresso and Cappuccino Machine from Mr. Coffee Café Barista.
This semi-automatic 3-in-1 espresso, cappuccino and latte machine features a 15-bar pump system that brews high quality, rich tasting coffee.
Like other great espresso machines, this Café Barista espresso machine boasts of a single-touch controls that allow you to choose conveniently from single or double shots of latte, espresso or cappuccino. In other words, the unit will enable you to make two servings of espresso, latte or cappuccino.
The espresso maker is designed to automatically froth milk if you prefer cappuccino or latte coffee varieties. The removable water reservoir makes filling and cleaning the machine fast and easy.
This machine is very easy to use. You do not need any skills whatsoever to operate it as long as you are capable of following simple instructions. The unit’s handy indicator lights are designed to highlight the current selection so that you do not make any mistakes.
The Premium Espresso and Cappuccino Machine is one of the most versatile coffee machines available in the market. Here are some of the pros and cons.
- Brews high-quality espresso, cappuccino or latte
- Automatic frothing with removable milk tank is unique
- Electric pump creates 15-bar pressure for efficient flavor extraction
- Prepares single or double espresso, latte or cappuccino
- Extremely easy to use, no skills are needed
- Comes with a handy recipe book to help you create incredible coffee drinks
- The unit’s water tank is great but may be too large for some users
- The frothing function is great but fails to provide realistic results
- Cleaning and washing the milk container may not be that easy
De’Longhi Nespresso Inissia Espresso Machine
Coming with a nifty Aeroccino 3 designed to provide smooth, finely textured hot or cold milk froth, the De’Longhi Nespresso Inissia is the machine to buy if you are looking for an excellent quality espresso maker. It can help make remarkable barista style coffee anytime you feel the craving.
The unit features a single-touch operation as well as a patented extraction system capable of delivering up to 19 bars of pressure. With this machine, your water will reach the ideal temperature in just 25 minutes to make as much as 9 coffees without having to refill the 24oz tank.
Another great feature is the adjustable cup size with 2 programmable Lungo and espresso buttons. To save you money in electricity bills, this eco-friendly kitchen appliance is engineered with an automatic power saving mode, which switches the machine off after 9 minutes of inactivity.
If you buy this machine, you will get a welcome set containing a range of Nespresso capsules with unique aroma profiles. As with most De’Longhi espresso machines, Nespresso Inissia is designed especially for use with Nespresso capsules.
You do not need any skills to use this machine as it works with one-touch operation. The inner surfaces of the machine feature anti-stick coating for easy cleaning.
- High-pressure pump means you will enjoy true coffee flavor
- One-touch operation and hassle-free extraction system
- Energy saving mode reduces electricity consumption
- Very fast heating times (25 seconds) saves you time on a busy morning
- A welcome set containing 16 Nespresso capsules ensure instant use
- Easy to use, clean and maintain espresso machine
- Includes a handy Aeroccino 3 for frothing
- Some units come with instructions written in hieroglyphics, a strange language to many
- The machine is not as quiet and as smooth as described
Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker
Although the production of this Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker has been discontinued, you can still find one in the online retail shops and even some local stores. The unit features a revolutionary Centrifusion technology that allows you to brew your coffee and espresso gently with a single-touch of a button.
As the Inissia reviewed earlier, this machine comes with an Aeroccino Plus milk frother with rapid preparation of hot or cold milk froth.
This technologically advanced espresso machine is fitted with capsule recognition and code reading technology which makes it possible for blend-specific parametric brewing. It features 2-capsule sizes – small for espresso and large for coffee pods.
Besides, effortless insertion and ejection of capsules make the device extremely easy to operate even with novices. Keep in mind that this espresso maker is designed for use only with Nespresso VertuoLine capsules; it is not compatible with Nespresso original line capsules.
The design includes a removable used capsule container capable of holding 13 to 20 capsules at a time. This unit heats quite fast with capability to reach optimal temperatures in just 15 seconds, which is one the best heating times among espresso machines. It is designed to automatically switch off after 9 minutes of inactivity to save you on energy consumption.
- A welcome set containing 12 Large Nespresso Vertuo capsules guarantees instant enjoyment
- Automatic blend recognition delivers the best in-cup result for your preferred variety
- Centrifusion technology ensure efficient extraction for quality results
- Simple one-touch brewing for easy operation
- Removable used capsule container ensures easy cleaning
- Automatic off-mode saves energy
- One convenient machine for 3-cups sizes
- Uses only Nespresso VertuoLine capsules which may be expensive
- The capsules are extremely expensive which may lock some people out
- Coffee is not nearly as hot enough as required
Ninja Coffee Bar Brewer System with Stainless Thermal Carafe
If you are looking for an espresso maker that will bring out the barista in you yet cost less than $300, check out the Ninja Coffer Bar Brewer System with Thermal Carafe.
It is armed with a built-in frother that will transform your milk to silky microfoam that is perfect for specialty brews such as cappuccino and latte. This feature makes this machine great for adding a tasty touch to your morning coffee, cold or hot.
This bar brewer system boasts of 6 brew sizes. It does not matter if you wish to have a daily morning coffee or enjoy your favorite beverage with friends. It can brew from single cup to carafe set.
So, all you need to do is pick right brew size for your needs. This system is ideal for brewing fresh over ice to leave you with a refreshingly cold espresso that does not water down.
The device will make lively and complex flavors giving you the opportunity enjoy the best coffee version.
Furthermore, this Bar Brewer system comes with Ninja over Ice Thermal Carafe that is perfect for entertaining thanks to its double wall, which is designed to keep your drinks cold for extended periods thus making your guests happy.
- Produces high-quality espresso and other coffee flavors
- Extremely versatile for brewing different quantities of coffee
- Produce and keeps iced coffee for guest entertainment
- Allows you to brew coffee and enjoy it either cold or hot depending on what you pick
- Designed to deliver balanced flavor
- Compact in design and very easy to use
- Lacks automatic shut off which may lead to energy wastage if used without keenness
- The machine might be easy to use but it can also be extremely difficult to clean
- The coffee pot holds just 12 cups which is on the lower side for many people
De’Longhi America EC680B Dedica
You will not go wrong if you choose to buy De’Longhi America EC680B at less than $300. It features a sleek design that is not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional.
This sturdy, compact and lightweight design takes up a paltry 6 inches of your kitchen counter space while still affording a whopping 35oz water tank.
Although modern in design, the unit offers you the traditional espresso and cappuccino experience. Dedica features De’Longhi patented manual cappuccino system, which allows you to achieve the thickest, most luxurious and longest lasting foam for unmatchable beverage you can confidently share with family, friends and other loved ones.
The machine allows you to customize your perfect beverage with one-of-a-kind flow stop system choosing between 1 or 2 shots of espresso.
This espresso maker is designed to deliver the optimum in performance thanks to an easy to use control panel with backlit or illuminated buttons, 3-in-1 filter holder to accommodate double shots, single shots as well as easy serving espresso pods.
A thermo block technology enables the machine to heat up to ideal temperatures in just 40 seconds. This device is equipped with many appreciable features you will enjoy only if you get a chance to buy and use it.
- Ultra-compact and lightweight design crafted with passion and skill
- Beautiful design which will complement your kitchen décor
- Great performance with easy to use, illuminated buttons
- 3-in-1 filter holder makes the unit extremely versatile
- Patented Manual cappuccino system achieves the best quality results
- Although compact in size, the machine has a large capacity tank
- It is impossible to perform the manual pull without reprogramming the buttons
- The reservoir may be too finicky with its seating requiring you to adjust the seating with each movement of the machine.
Philips Saeco Poemia Class Manual Espresso Machine
The brand Philips is synonymous with electronic gadgets. I bet you will love their Saeco Poemia Class of manual espresso machines. This unit is armed with a powerful 15-bar pump as well as a pressurized crema portafilter for faultless espresso.
Not to forget a Pannarello steam wand that lets you froth milk flawlessly. All you need to do is insert the Pannarello into the milk and let it froth until it achieves your desired consistency.
You will know that the Saeco Poemia Class is ready to brew by appreciating control lights. It features a nozzle that is a convenient source of hot water, hot chocolate as well as other beverages. The frothing tip is conveniently designed to allow for easy removal during maintenance.
This machine is made of stainless steel meaning it is resistant to rust and corrosion making it easy to clean and safe for everyone taking the coffee. In addition to the stainless steel construction, this unit features an ergonomic design you can use every day without complaints.
Whether you are refilling coffee and water or emptying the drip tray and the filter, you will enjoy refilling convenience and direct access to all containers. Another important feature worth mentioning is its cup-warming surface, which helps in developing flavor, and keeps crema firm.
- 15 bar pump and pressurized filter allows for high-quality extraction
- Compatibility with both ground coffee or single sever ESE shots is convenient
- Designed to use heat from boiler to warm cups thus adds to machines efficiency
- Removable drip tray and water reservoir for easy cleaning
- Reliable and efficient milk frothing
- Control lights and one-touch operation makes the machine easy to use
- The machine is a little bit expensive for its quality and performance
- Lining 2-shot glasses up under the filer is quite a hassle
Capresso 118.05 EC PRO Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
Another great choice of an espresso machine costing $300 is the Capresso 118.05 EC Pro. Though affordable, this machine boasts of a performance-oriented design featuring an advanced pump boiler system and dual filter choices.
It is optimized for both espresso and cappuccino brewing thanks to its commercial-grade features and specifications. The two-filter option includes a heavy-duty double spout filer designed for beginners and is easy and convenient to use brewing one or two espressos at any given time.
The filter has a unique and high-performance sieve which helps to produce ideal brew quickly and easily via creating optimal pressure without having perfect grind size or stamp.
For those looking to improve their skills and be expert baristas, the unit comes with the EC PRO’s bottomless espresso filter which lets you brew the true barista style. The pressure in this professional sieve is built up based on tamp and grind size.
This way, the bottomless espresso filter is able to produce thicker, richer crema and hotter because the espresso has very little contact with the surfaces of the portafilter. Besides, its 15-bar pump provides the maximum pressure for rich, quality crema. You will love this machine the moment you try it.
- Design includes two espresso filters, one for control and another for convenience
- Versatile with capability to brew 1 or 2 cups at a time
- Technologically advanced pump boiler maintains reservoir of water at the optimal temperature
- Bar pump provides optimal pressure for reliable flavor extraction
- Ideal for both beginners as well as experience baristas
- Nice machine at an affordable cost
- Cup warmer does not work as great as described
- It would be great if the machine had two heating elements
- Some units tend to leak at the location of the steaming wand
Breville ESP8XL Cafe Roma Stainless Espresso Maker
Featuring a beautiful, quality oriented design, the Breville ESP8XL Café Roma is one of the greatest espresso machines you can ever purchase with less than $300.
Made from healthy, sleek and easy to clean stainless steel kitchen appliance, this espresso machine is armed with a 15-bar thermo block pump capable of extracting thick and rich crema.
The features responsible for its great performance include dual-wall filter system, which also contributes to impressive crema.
It also boasts of a froth enhancer, which allows you to enjoy your cappuccino and latte as you indulge yourself for as much as you like.
For convenience of use, this machine comes with removable drip tray and grind as well as a frothing jug. There is also an efficient cup warming plate.
To ensure that all your family members join you in enjoying this energy giving and brain-alerting beverage, the machine is armed with 40.6oz removable water reservoir.
When you buy this espresso maker, you will also get stainless steel frothing pitcher tamping tool, a cleaning tool, and a measuring spoon. This tool allows for both single and double shots giving you the flexibility to make your espresso as you desire.
Despite its great features and specifications, the ESP8XL Cafe Roma remains one of the most pocket-friendly espresso machines currently in the market.
- Sturdy and sleek design for aesthetics and functionality
- Offers great value for money compared others in its price category
- Easy to use and maintain thanks to included accessories
- High capacity water reservoir means enough drink for families and parties
- Cleaning is a breeze with the machine’s removable tray
- The milk frother is effective but not great for those who want to enjoy quality latte
- The machine is not designed to use ESE pods which could be too limiting
Hamilton Beach 40792 Espresso & Cappuccino Maker, Black
The last but not least espresso maker in our reviews is the Hamilton Beach 40792. Designed to make high-quality espresso and cappuccino, this machine is fitted with 15-bar Italian pump for excellent extraction and thick, rich crema similar in quality to coffeehouse-made espresso and cappuccino.
It features a patented slide and lock filter holder which makes setting the machine up extremely easy. This simple technology only allows you to choose either finely ground espresso or pod and then use the selector dial for steam and espresso functions.
To add to the above features, the Beach 40792 Espresso & Cappuccino Maker features a swiveling wand for steaming and frothing milk for rich and delicious cappuccino.
As common with the high-quality espresso machines including the ones we have reviewed here, this machine comes with removable water reservoir and drip tray that make cleaning and maintenance hassle-free.
To accentuate your kitchen décor, this espresso machine features stainless steel accents that not only look sleek but also resistant to stain. The designers of this device included easy steps, along with other features, clever ways to minimize fuss and allow you savor the moments of espresso indulgence.
Simply allow the unit to cool down and then wipe down the exterior with a damp cloth. All removable parts are washable in warm water.
- Mixes simplicity with technology to deliver an excellent espresso machine
- Made of durable and rustproof stainless steel
- Its 15-bar pressure delivers excellent extraction as well as rich crema
- Patented Slide and Lock filter holder technology is simple but highly effective
- Indicator lights let you know when the water is ready
- Removable drip tray and water reservoir make cleaning the machine very easy
- Some units have the tendency to leak after some time
- Brews extremely quickly which is great but may be counterproductive
How to Choose the Best Espresso Machine under $300
You already used a parameter when you searched for the best espresso machines under $300. The amount of money you intend to spend on buying an espresso machine should be one of the most important considerations.
Generally, cheaper machines may not be able to deliver professional results but a budget of $300 is extremely good. Besides budget, here few more things you need to consider before arriving at this important decision.
Ease Of Use
It is no doubt that a good espresso machine should be easy to use. As you may have learned from the reviews, each of the models described tried to capitalize on ease of use for the convenience of the user. When making your choice look for one that has features of convenience including removable water tank and drip tray as well as availability of cleaning accessories.
Your Drink Preferences
Different espresso machines have various capabilities. It is upon you to choose the best type based on your own drink preferences.
If you are a beginner then you might do well with espresso machine designed only to make espresso coffee but if you an experienced barrister then you need a machine that is capable of producing more than just single drink option.
Nespresso machines come with different capacities allowing you to choose the right size for you and your family. However, you should not take a huge sized machine that will upset your kitchen in terms of décor and space. Try to marry off your kitchen counter with the machine you intend to buy to reach a compromise.
High-quality espresso machines come with warranty, which gives you an idea of how much confidence the manufacturers have with their products. When looking for the best espresso machine buy, look first at the warranty information and then consider the material the manufacturer has used in its construction.
How to Make Espresso: Brewing Tips for Beginners
Metallic construction is durable but may be heavy. Thermoplastic material, on the other hand, is lightweight but not durable.
Availability of Extra Features
Another important consideration would be the other preferences. High-quality models always come with a number of extra features designed improve their performance. Some of those features include built-in grinder, water filter, cup warmer and programmable setting and frothing wand among other extras.
Finding the best espresso machine under 300 dollars should not be a problem if you are armed with the right information. As you have learned from our top 10 reviews, you can get high quality gear, feature-packed coffee makers that can guarantee you years of service each time delivering great results.
Take your time and check each of these machines out and I believe at least one of them will match your search criteria. In case you do not find what you like then you can take advantage of the provided buying guide to make an informed choice. With this budget, I guarantee you won’t wrong finding a great espresso machine.