Espresso machine is becoming more common as a household appliance these days. When instant coffee was norm before, these days, people are starting to appreciate flavor-rich brew each morning. For that, espresso machines are now a part of an important household investment. If you have outgrown entry-level espresso machine then it’s likely that you would want some upgrade. For that, here is our best espresso machine under 500 and some other recommendations.
The Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother is one of the more popular espresso makers on the market. While it looks a little pricy to begin with, you are paying for quality and overtime it will pay you back handsomely. This sleek, black, automatic espresso maker would look good on any kitchen counter. It can make a number of different types of coffee so there should be something for everyone.
One particular feature of the Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother to note is the built-in Aeroccino. This is specifically designed for those who love their milk-based drinks. First of all, fill the Aeroccino with the required amount of milk and press the “Start” button. Next, open the lever, insert a capsule and then close the lever. Then fill a glass with the hot milk froth and place the glass under the coffee outlet. Finally press either the Espresso or Lungo button – and there you have it, a perfect cup of creamy and tasty coffee!
Features & Benefits of the Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother
The main features of the Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother are:
- Dimensions: 15.5 x 11.7 x 16.7 inches
- Weight: 14 pounds
- Pump or Steam: this espresso maker has a pump driven mechanism
- Maximum Pump Pressure: operates at a maximum of 19 bars
- Water Tank Capacity: has a capacity of 1 liter which is just over 4 cups. The tank is removable.
- Steam Wand: does not come with a steam wand
- Drip Tray: this espresso maker has a removable drip tray for ease of cleaning.
- Programmable Cup Size: this unit comes with a programmable cup size feature.
- Espresso Pod Adaptor: this espresso maker has a coffee pod adapter and a container for holding up to eleven used capsules.
- Folding Cup Support: the support has one position for a normal cup and another for a macchiato glass.
- Timer: as with most espresso makers this unit has no timer
- Warranty: comes with a 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
Unless you live in a big city, and have a Nespesso store nearby you, will need to order the coffee capsules for your Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother directly from the Nespresso website. There are sixteen varieties to choose from, including decaffeinated varieties, and users say that customer service and speed of delivery is excellent. There are coffee capsule samples included with the Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother when you first buy it so you can see which coffee suits your taste before placing an order.
Those who have already bought and used the Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother generally comment on how good the coffee is that the espresso machine makes – as good as you would get from a top barista! The cream is full-bodied and tasty, and the espresso is hot! The Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother also makes the coffee quickly so you won’t have to hang around for that first cup of coffee in the morning!
If Nespresso CitiZ Automatic Espresso Maker and Milk Frother isn’t enough for your taste, then consider checking out the following:
Gaggia Brera Superautomatic Espresso Machine
With the name Gaggia with it, it simply means that this machine is a serious espresso maker. It sports Mavea Water Filter with four stages of filtration to remove impurities while reducing scale build up along the process. This unit comes with power saving feature as it automatically brings the system into standby mode after one hour of non-activity. For safety’s sake, the system is programmed to notify the users when extra care is needed. The milk steaming feature is manual but it has pre-infusion feature to ensure maximum flavor and aroma from your coffee in every extraction you do. Read our Gaggia Brera SuperAutomatic Espresso Machine Review
De’Longhi EN550BK1 Lattissima
For those who wanted the convenience of using Nepresso capsules, this machine works like a charm. Done with the norm of 15 bar pressure, this machine can prepare your espresso with high-performing 19-bar pressure pump. It has 6 tactile beverage buttons, with pre-programmed preparation, where you can choose from ristretto, espresso, long, hot milk, cappuccino, latte macchiato arranged in a simple and intuitive way. This machine has the patented De’Longhi “automatic cappuccino system” which is a breeze to use. It has a reduced heating up time of approximately 25 seconds, an improvement from its predecessor.
Next on our list of best espresso machine under 500 is Gaggia’s 12300. This espresso machine comes with chrome-plated brass brew coupled with a heavy 58-mm portafilter. This is then supported by its 15-bar pump and high-wattage boiler to ensure perfect brewing and temperature. It also has 3-way solenoid valve and push-button controls for easy operation. It has a 60-ounce removable water reservoir for added convenience. It can prepare 2 cups of brewed coffee simultaneously. If one wished to have some frothing, it’s a good thing that this machine has steamer for frothing milk. With dimensions of 10-2/5 by 9-3/5 by 15-2/3 inches, this baby can be kept without taking up much space.
The beauty of this machine starts with its pre-infusion function which applies low water pressure at the start of the extraction so it gently expands for exact and even extraction. This is powered by a 1600w thermocoil heating system with integrated stainless steel water coil which accurately controls and maintains core water temperature. It also has auto purge function which automatically adjusts water temperature so every ounce of your beans can be extracted. To make things more interesting, it has a 15 bar, Italian pump which provides complete volumetric control with its preset, manual over-ride and re-programmable control functions. Also good to note, it has a “Black Plastic” insert inside the stainless steel bowl of the portafilter which helps in reducing heat loss when your espresso hits cold metal. Read our Breville BES840XL Review
Although not very known as a brand, Krups do have some good contender with their espresso machines. Take for instance this 2 in 1 machine which is coffee maker and espresso machine. And it does not stop there, it also has a convenient steam nozzle so you can froth your milk when you’re your craving for some lattes or cappuccino. For its coffee maker function, it has a 10-cup capacity which you can program for coffee strength and a clock so you can set the daily start time. It has a ‘keep warm’ function which can maintain your coffee’s temperature for up to 2 hours. On the other hand, its espresso making function has a 4-cup capacity with a 4-bar steam system which can easily make espresso in a jiffy thanks to its 1600 watts capacity.
For years, this machine is among the best seller of the company. Why? It has something to do with its 72-ounce removable water reservoir making refilling less of a hassle. It also has to do with its stainless-steel housing, brass portafilters and grouphead that keep temperature stable and resulting to a longer service life. Add its 17-1/2-bar pump with high-voltage boiler with hot-water dispenser and frothing wand. It also has a single- and double-shot stainless-steel filter basket, tamper, and measuring scoop. All of it makes Gaggia 14101 a complete package. With its very minimal footprint of 14-1/4 by 8 by 9-1/2 inches then you got yourself a winner.
With lots of technological innovation packed in one item, this machine is a real wonder. First off, it has a patented dual function filter holder as well as patented cappuccino system frother for an easier way to enjoy your brew. It has cup storage tray with a cup-warming plate so you can enjoy optimal temperature of your coffee. With its removable, 1.4-liter water tank you can always have convenience at hand. You’ll have lesser thing to worry about as well as this machine is self-priming so all you have to worry about is brewing. It comes with three-button control panel which is intuitively designed. It features vintage Italian look and feel with metal exterior plus a stainless steel boiler. It comes with a Cappuccino System milk frother plus this machine will brew your coffee from either pods or ground beans.
Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker
Although the cheapest among the list, this machine still deserves the space. For one, it can create Cafe quality brews. With its no-fuss milk frother, it will be a breeze to prepare and enjoy your cappuccino too. It also sports a powerful 15-bar Italian pump which makes coffee extraction easy and efficient. Operating the machine is pretty straight-forward with its simple push-button feature. As it comes with an easy-fill, removable reservoir, you can be assured that it will work perfectly even for novice coffee connoisseur.