Having your own espresso bar at home, you’ll be making your own delicious espresso and coffee drinks how you want and when you want. It’s not only fun, but it will save you a whole lot of money (no more trips to expensive coffee shops).

To be honest, if you’re looking for the best gear out there, then $500 is not considered to be a high budget. However, we can absolutely work with it. Your budget will go on an espresso machine and a conical burr grinder. The grind and consistency of your coffee will make all the difference in the quality of your espresso, so it’s important not to skip the grinder.

Below, we’ll list a number of espresso makers and conical burr grinders with a sum price of $500 or less. Please note that these prices can change by their sellers which we have no hand in, but we do our best to find you products at these prices.

Best Espresso Makers For $300 Budget : *Cost a little less or more than $300*

Gaggia 14101 Classic Espresso Machine:

Gaggia 14101 Classic Espresso Machine

This is a favorite among many people, because for its price, this is a top-notch espresso maker. Gaggia is an Italian brand well-known for its high quality. The Classic is a manual machine that will allow you to practice barista skills with ease.

Features:

  • 17 1/2 bar pump pressure.
  • 72-ounce water reservoir.
  • Stainless steel housing.
  • Brass portafilter and grouphead for temperature stability.
  • Frothing wand and hot water dispenser.

Our Gaggia Classic Reviews and Comparisons:

Click here to learn more about the Gaggia Classic, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Breville 800ESXL Triple-Priming Espresso Machine:

Breville 800ESXL 15-Bar Triple-Priming Die-Cast Espresso Machine

A beautiful machine from Australian brand Breville. This die-cast espresso maker doesn’t only look good, but has enough features to make it such a steal for its price:

  • 15-bar pump pressure.
  • 75 oz water reservoir with a front window that shows the level of water.
  • Auto-purge function adjust water temperature after steam for the best espresso extraction temperature.
  • Triple Prime function releases 3 bursts of hot water to wet the coffee ground for an even extraction and full flavor.
  • Stainless steel housing.
  • Dial knob allows you to select from espresso, steam or hot water.

Also Read:

Click here to learn more about the Breville Triple Priming Espresso Machine, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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DeLonghi Dedica Espresso Machine:

DeLonghi Dedica Pump Espresso Machine

This espresso maker by DeLonghi is exceptionally slim in width, but don’t be fooled by its size, you can use it to make fantastic coffee drinks.

Features:

  • Only 6-inch wide, doesn’t take a lot of counterspace.
  • Quick 40-seconds heat up time.
  • Stainless steel exterior.
  • Auto flow stop.
  • Cappuccino frothing system for a delicious and creamy froth.
  • Pre-set and reprogrammable settings.
  • Can be used manually, too.

Click here to learn more about DeLonghi Dedica, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Conical Burr Grinders Under $200:

Bodum Bistro Conical Burr Grinder:

 

The Bodum Bistro is a mid-range conical burr grinder that gives you many decent features for its price range.

Features:

  • Choose from 14 grind settings from fine to coarse.
  • Borosilicate glass ground bean container that reduces static ‘jumping beans’
  • Timed grind setting allows you to set a timer for your grind.
  • 220g bean hopper capacity.
  • 11 oz coffee ground container.

Click here to learn more about the Bodum Bistro Electric grinder, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Capresso Infinity Burr Grinder:

Capresso 560.01 Infinity Burr Grinder

The Capresso Infinity is somewhat similar to Bodum’s Bistro with some slight differences. For example it has 16 settings instead of 14, which isn’t huge, but can make some difference in the result of your preferred coffee method.

Features:

  • 16 grind settings from coarse to fine.
  • 8 1/2 ounces bean hopper capacity.
  • 4 oz coffee ground container.
  • Built-in timer.
  • Available in plastic housing or die-cast housing.

Click here to learn more about the Capresso Infinity, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Breville Dose Control Pro Grinder:

Breville BCG600SIL The Dose Control Pro Coffee Bean Grinder

  • Choose from 60 precise grind settings.
  • Built-in timer allows you to choose from increments as little as 1 second.
  • 12 oz bean hopper capacity.
  • Holder allows you to grind directly into a portafilter, gold-tone filter or coffee container.
  • Stainless steel housing.

Click here to learn more about the Breville Dose Control Pro Grinder, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Watch Video Reviews:

Here are some videos of the gear featured above for action:

How To Use Gaggia Classic:

Pulling an Espresso shot using the Breville Triple-priming Espresso Machine:

Full Review of the DeLonghi Dedica:

Review of the Breville Dose Control Pro Grinder:

 

Cuisinox Espresso Cup and Saucer

Despite being a really strong and somewhat ‘an acquired taste’ of a drink, Espresso remains to be a very popular coffee drink. Why? Because Espresso is the base of every popular coffee drink: Cappuccino, Latte, Machiatto and every hot or cold coffee drink out there.

Espresso is made by using a really high-pressure machine that forces boiling water through the finely ground coffee beans. The result is a shot of coffee with a thick layer on top known as Crema. Espresso can be enjoyed on its own or with milk which creates a variation of drinks like latte, cappuccino or more.

Can Espresso Be Made Without a Machine?

espresso-

 

As espresso makers can be relatively expensive, many people wonder if it’s possible to make espresso without an espresso maker. Truth is, no, it is NOT possible to make an authentic shot of espresso without an espresso machine. Actually, the name ‘Espresso’ refers to the fact that the coffee has been made using high-pressure (i.e: an espresso machine). Espresso has to be made using a high-pressure pump espresso machine.

Espresso can be tricky to make. Whether you’re using a home machine or a commercial one, it requires some training to get the ratio right. However, luckily, there are many options of a decent quick and easy espresso at home (you’ll still need a machine).

Espresso At Home On a Budget:

We’ve already mentioned that espresso can be somewhat tricky to make in an authentic way and it requires some practice. If you’re an aspiring home barista and you want to learn the process of making great espresso, you’ll need a manual espresso maker, which luckily is available for every budget. If you’re someone who wants a quick shot of espresso without the work, a single-serve espresso maker would be a great choice for you.

Capresso 118.05 EC Pro Espresso Machine

For the Barista Wanna-Be: If you prefer to make your espresso shot manually, you’ll be happy to know that there are many affordable manual machines to choose from. Now to be perfectly honest, these are not the greatest machines as you won’t be able to control many aspects of your espresso shot like temperature, pressure and other aspects that an expensive espresso machine will allow you to do. But they are a good product to start learning your espresso making and milk frothing skills.

There are many machines we covered, so refer to these lists according to your budget:

Nespresso Inissia Red Bundle

By using a single-serve espresso maker like Nespresso, a shot of espresso is only a click away. Nespresso uses pods that have pre-measured coffee ground in it, insert the pod, hit the espresso button and the machine will do everything for you automatically. Some Nespresso makers include a milk frother (or you can purchase one separately) which will allow you to create a variety of coffee drinks. The milk frother will also create a delicious froth automatically.

The downside of using a single-serve espresso maker (Nespresso or others) is that the pods soon become an expensive habit. But the great news about Nespresso is that there is a big variety of non-official Nespresso compatible pods to choose from that are not expensive. There are also refillable Nespresso pods you can use to brew your favorite coffee and save on pods.

Alternatives To Espresso:

If you like a short coffee with a strong flavor, there are alternatives to espresso:

Vev-Vigano Vespress Oro 4-cup Stainless Steel Stovetop Espresso Maker
For example, you can use a stovetop Moka maker. This is a popular coffee brewing method, especially among Italians who are serious about their Espresso. a Moka stovetop maker is commonly known as a ‘stovetop espresso maker’, but the produced coffee is not really espresso. However, it is very strong and is consumed in small cups, just like Espresso.

AeroPress Coffee Maker

An Aeropress is also a great way to make a short cup of coffee. Using an Aeropress, you can brew finely ground coffee using a small amount of water to brew a short espresso-like shot (still doesn’t make it a real espresso though).

 

Nespresso Inissia Machine

The Inissia is a favorite among Nespresso lovers. It’s been a popular choice lately due to its affordable price and great features. However, with the rise of other Nespresso machines like the VertuoLine, there’s been some confusion over which coffee capsules can be used with the Inissia.

Click here to read our review of the Nespresso Inissia and learn how it compares to other Nespresso machines.

Which Coffee Pods To Use with the Nespresso Inissia:

Nespresso Capsules

  • The Inissia is one of Nespresso’s OriginalLine machines, which means it uses the original Nespresso capsules (pictured above).
  • You can also use Nespresso compatible capsules like Gourmesso or other brands.
  • Another option is to use a refillable Nespresso pods. Those are NOT officially licensed, so use them at your own risk.

Where To Buy Nespresso Capsules: 

Capsules are widely available online or in-store. You can buy your capsules locally by visiting your nearest Nespresso boutique (visit Nespresso.com for locations), or you can buy them from Nespresso’s online store.

You can also buy your Nespresso capsules and Nespresso-compatible capsules on Amazon, here are our buying guides to help you out:

Can You Use Dolce Gusto Pods in Nespresso Inissia? 

Dolce Gusto Pods

No, you can’t. While, at a glance, the shape of the Dolce Gusto pods are kind of similar to Nespresso’s, there are not the same at all. Nespresso’s capsules have a different design, are made of recyclable aluminum. The Dolce Gusto pods are a little bigger and are made of plastic.

 

Refurbished Jura ENA 9 One Touch

Swiss brand JURA makes high-end superautomatic espresso makers that every coffee lovers dreams of having at home. The Jura ENA 9 is the slimmest super-automatic made by Jura, it gives you a wide range of freshly brewed specialty coffee drinks with a touch of a button. The machine does it all, from grinding, to coffee brewing and milk frothing, all you have to do is push a button!

Why Buy a Refurbished Jura?

You might be wondering why we’re writing specifically about a refurbished Jura. Why not buy new? And is it safe to buy a refurbished machine?

Well, we realize that many people dream of having a Jura at home, but Jura’s coffee systems happen to be at the high end when it comes to price. The machines are certainly worth it, but unfortunately, not everyone can afford to buy a brand-new Jura.

That’s where a refurbished machine makes a very smart option. You can get a refurbished, new-like Jura machine with savings up to %50 OFF! That, right away, makes it a much more affordable option for many people. The machines are factory serviced in the Jura USA Facility and come with a 1 year warranty.

Why Choose the ENA 9 One-Touch?

ENA 9 Front

Jura has a wide range of excellent espresso machines, but the ENA 9 One Touch has to be our favorite for many reasons you’ll learn about in this post.

Features of the ENA 9 One Touch:

  • Less than 9 1/2 Inch wide, making it the slimmest of its kind.
  • Built-in conical burr grinder with 5 adjustable grind settings.
  • 7 oz bean hopper capacity.
  • 37 oz removable water tank.
  • 15 bar pump pressure.
  • Bypass doser for using coffee ground, in case you wish to use coffee other than the one in the hopper.
  • One-touch milk frothing for creating specialty coffee drinks.
  • Hot water dispenser.
  • Height adjustable coffee spout allows you to adjust according to your cup’s height to eliminate splashing.
  • Fully programmable cup sizes, coffee volume and temperature settings.
  • Aroma Boost setting for giving you an extra kick and taking the strength of your coffee up a notch.
  • LCD screen display with color changing light to indicate status of the machine: Green = ready, Red = requires action or Yellow = Programming mode.
  • Rotary dial allows you to choose and reprogram your settings.
  • Automatic cleaning cycle.
  • Made in Switzerland.

Click here to learn more about the Jura ENA 9, read the customer reviews and buy it (REFURBISHED).  Want to buy it new? Click here!

Jura ENA 9 vs. ENA Micro 9, What’s The Difference?

Refurbished Jura ENA Micro 9 One Touch

The ENA Micro 9 is a slightly redesigned version of the ENA 9, it has the following different features:

  • Even slimmer than the ENA 9 at less than 9″ wide.
  • Redesigned control panel with all touch buttons.
  • Bean hopper capacity is 4.4 oz.
  • Redesigned hot water dispenser.
  • The ENA Micro 9 doesn’t have AROMA BOOST feature

Everything else is pretty similar to the ENA 9. You get the same quality of coffee with simple one-touch system.

Click here to learn more about the Jura ENA Micro 9, read the customer reviews and buy it (REFURBISHED).  Want to buy it new? Click here!

What’s The Downside of a Jura Espresso Machine?

We already said that Jura has the best super automatic espresso machine out there. But, there’s one downside to it that I personally don’t like.

Jura Stainless 14 oz. Thermal Milk Container

If you happened to be a fan of cappuccinos or lattes, then you’ll definitely need frothed milk. The machine does automatically froth milk for you, but that milk has to be drawn using a milk container. Your Jura machine will include a ‘hose’ of sort that you’ll attach to your machine and then put in your container of choice. Jura does have milk containers, but they’re sold separately, and that’s exactly what I don’t like. For a machine of Jura’s class, you’d hope that the milk container was included with your purchase. However, you can still use your own container.

Watch How They Work:

Demo of the Jura ENA Micro 9:

Jura ENA 9 One Touch:

 

It’s no doubt that Italian brand Gaggia makes excellent super-automatic espresso machines. With the release of their Anima super-auto line, they released 3 Anima machines that are seemingly similar, but with different price tags (why must they always confuse us this way!). In this post, we’ve done all the research for you and wrote down the difference between these models.

Features of Gaggia Anima Super Automatic Espresso Machine:

Gaggia Anima Super Automatic Espresso Machine

  • Fully automatic espresso maker with LCD display.
  • Built-in ceramic burr grinder with 5 adjustable settings.
  • Pre-infusion option ensures maximum saturation and flavor extraction.
  • Pannarello steam wand with Chrome plating.
  • Pre-programmed buttons: Espresso, Lungo, Aroma Strength, Steam, Hot Water. All can be reprogrammed to your taste.
  • Bypass for using pre-ground coffee.
  • Digital display makes it easier to program your machine, also display maintenance alerts.
  • 60 oz water reservoir capacity.
  • Plastic housing exterior.

Click here to learn more about Gaggia Anima Super Automatic Espresso Maker, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Features of Gaggia Anima Deluxe Espresso Machine:

Gaggia Anima Deluxe Super Automatic Espresso Machine

  • Fully automatic espresso maker with LCD display.
  • Built-in ceramic burr grinder with 5 adjustable grind settings.
  • Pre-infusion setting.
  • Automatic milk frother.
  • Pre-programmed buttons: Espresso, Lungo, Aroma Strength, Milk Froth, Hot Water.
  • Bypass doser for pre-ground coffee.
  • 60 oz water reservoir.
  • Brushed metal exterior.

Click here to learn more about Gaggia Anima Deluxe Super Automatic Espresso Maker, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Features of Gaggia Anima Prestige Super Automatic Espresso Maker:

Gaggia RI8762 Anima Prestige Super Automatic Espresso Machine

  • Fully automatic espresso maker with LCD display.
  • Built-in ceramic burr grinder with 5 adjustable grind settings.
  • Pre-infusion settings.
  • Built-in milk frothing carafe for fully automatic frothing and milk dispensing.
  • Pre-programmed buttons: Espresso, Lungo, Aroma Strength, Cappuccino, Latte Macchiato.
  • Bypass doser for pre-ground coffee.
  • 60 oz water reservoir.
  • Brushed metal exterior.

Click here to learn more about Gaggia Anima Prestige Super Automatic Espresso Maker, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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What Is The Difference Between Gaggia Anima, Anima Deluxe and Anima Prestige?

Image
TitleGaggia RI8762 Anima Prestige Super Automatic Espresso Machine, SilverGaggia Anima Super Automatic Espresso Machine, BlackGaggia Anima Deluxe Super Automatic Espresso Machine, Silver
FeaturePre-infusion feature ensures maximum flavor and aroma extraction
Adjustable coffee dispenser with a maximum height of a little over 5.9 inches
Water reservoir has 60oz capacity
Rapid Steam technology and one-touch auto frothing milk carafe
Low energy consumption - standby mode activates after one hour of idle time
Pre-infusion feature ensures maximum flavor and aroma extraction
Adjustable coffee dispenser with a maximum height of a little over 5.9 inches
Water reservoir has 60oz capacity
Rapid Steam technology and movable chrome accented Pannarello steam wand
Low energy consumption standby mode activates after one hour of idle time
Pre-infusion feature ensures maximum flavor and aroma extraction
Adjustable coffee dispenser with a maximum height of a little over 5.9 inches
Water reservoir has 60oz capacity
Rapid Steam technology and cappuccinatore auto frother
Low energy consumption - standby mode activates after one hour of idle time
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LinkMore InfoMore InfoMore Info

There are two main difference between each of these models: The pre-set buttons and the milk frother style.

  • In the Gaggia Anima, you have one-touch buttons for espresso, lungo and steam. This means, when making a Cappuccino for example, you’ll have to brew the espresso then manually froth your milk by hitting the steam button. The Gaggia Anima is the baseline model and has a plastic exterior.
  • With the Anima Deluxe, the frother is automatic, how it works is  you connect the frother to your frothing jug using an attachment and it will automatically froth your milk and pour it into your cup. The pre-set buttons on it are Espresso, Lungo, Milk Froth as well as the standard aroma strength and hot water. Another thing is that the Anima Deluxe has a brushed metal exterior.
  • Finally we have the Anima Prestige, the top of the line model. This one includes a built-in milk container so the machine automatically draws milk from it, froths and dispenses it into your cup. Not only that, it actually does it all automatically, so can select a Cappuccino or Latte and it will brew the espresso and froth and dispense the milk all with one touch. The milk container is detachable, so any left over milk can be stored in the fridge. The pre-set buttons on this model are Espresso, Lungo, Cappuccino and Latte. Like the Deluxe, the Anima Prestige has a metal exterior as well.

Watch How They Work:

Gaggia Anima Deluxe:

Gaggia Anima Prestige:

 

Nespresso Prodigio & Milk Frother

Nespresso has added yet another innovation to its lineup of single-serve espresso makers. Just like Nespresso brought us VertuoLine and VertuoLine Evoluo, which are the first Nespresso espresso makers that brew BOTH espresso and coffee!

So, what else can Nespresso bring us? Well, this time it’s an espresso maker only, but it’s powered by a high-end technology that adds to convenience and luxury Nespresso has to offer.

What Is Nespresso Prodigio?

Prodigio is a smart, Bluetooth-enabled espresso maker by Nespresso. It works just like any other OriginalLine Nespresso machine, it brews espresso using Nespresso capsules in the same way we know and love. But an added feature is the wireless Bluetooth connectivity, it connects to your smartphone or tablet (iOS or Android) and allows you to wirelessly brew a cup of ristretto, espresso or lungo without getting up. You can even schedule your brewing, manage your capsule stock, or check on your machine clean-up and maintenance all via a smart app.

Features of the Nespresso Prodigio:

Nespresso Prodigio

  • 19-bar single-serve espresso maker.
  • The first Bluetooth connected espresso maker by Nespresso.
  • Use the smart app to brew coffee immediately, schedule future automatic brews, capsule stock and more.
  • Uses Nespresso OriginalLine capsules.
  • Three programmable volume settings: Ristretto, Espresso and Lungo
  • Fast heat up time, 25 seconds.
  • Water reservoir capacity: 27 oz.
  • Rotating water tank makes it more adaptable to your space
  • Automatic used capsule ejection.
  • Used Capsule drawer capacity: up to 14.
  • Dimensions: 10.1″ x 4.7″ x 14.7″
  • Made in Hungary.

Click here to learn more about Nespresso Prodigio, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Available Models:

Image
TitleNespresso Prodigio & Milk Frother Titan Espresso Maker with Smartphone App ConnectivityNespresso Prodigio Silver Espresso Maker with Smartphone App Connectivity
FeatureThe first connected Nespresso machine. Your phone can now make the perfect cup of coffee
Brew delicious coffee without even leaving your chair
Nespresso 19 bar pressure system - Fast heat-up: 25 seconds, Rotating water tank
Compatible with Nespresso's amazing coffee pods
Smartphone APP Connectivity - Set time to automatically brew, Capsule stock management, Set time to automatically brew, Descaling, low water and maintenance alerts
Silver and black brewer
Smart phone connectivity application
Set automatic brew time via App and more
25 second heat-up & 19 bars of pressure
Rich, silky crema forms naturally with each cup brewed
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LinkMore InfoMore Info

The Nespresso Prodigio is available in two models, Prodigio which is the standalone espresso maker and the Prodigio Milk, which has a built in Aeroccino milk frother.

Each model is available in 2 colors: Silver or Titan (Grey).

Watch How It Works:

This last video is not in English, but it should give you a clear idea of how the app and smart connectivity works.

Common Questions:

Nespresso Prodigio vs. Vertuoline, What’s The Difference?

Image
TitleNespresso A+GCC1-US-BK-NE VertuoLine Evoluo Deluxe Coffee & Espresso Maker with Aeroccino Plus Milk Frother, BlackNespresso Prodigio & Milk Frother Titan Espresso Maker with Smartphone App Connectivity
FeatureIncludes Aeroccino Plus milk frother: rapid one touch preparation of hot or cold milk froth. Items sold separately valued at $348
New revolutionary Centrifusion technology to gently brew both Coffee and Espresso with one touch of a button
Capsule recognition and code reading technology for blend-specific parametric brewing. Two capsule sizes, large for Coffee and small for Espresso
Easy insertion and ejection of capsules. For use with Nespresso VertuoLine capsules only. Not compatible with Nespresso Original Line capsules
Removable used capsule container holds 17 used capsules. Automatic off mode after 9 minutes of inactivity. Removable 54 oz. water tank
The first connected Nespresso machine. Your phone can now make the perfect cup of coffee
Brew delicious coffee without even leaving your chair
Nespresso 19 bar pressure system - Fast heat-up: 25 seconds, Rotating water tank
Compatible with Nespresso's amazing coffee pods
Smartphone APP Connectivity - Set time to automatically brew, Capsule stock management, Set time to automatically brew, Descaling, low water and maintenance alerts
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore Info

Apart from the fact that Prodigio is Nespresso’s first Bluetooth connected espresso maker, it’s also an OriginalLine machine, which means it uses the smaller espresso capsules by Nespresso (as well as Nespresso compatible brands). Vertuoline uses its own designed capsules to brew espresso and coffee, while Prodigio only brews espresso and espresso based drinks.

Nespresso Prodigio vs. Pixie, What’s The Difference?

Image
TitleNespresso Pixie Espresso Maker With Aeroccino Plus Milk Frother, Electric TitanNespresso Prodigio & Milk Frother Titan Espresso Maker with Smartphone App Connectivity
FeatureProgrammable buttons for espresso and lungo, folding drip tray for larger cups and recipes, brew ready in 25-30 second
Backlight indicators, water level detection, auto power-off, used capsule container, convenient power cord storage
12.83-inch length by 4.33-inch width by 9-1/4-inch height
24-Ounce water tank
Aeroccino plus. hot and cold milk froth for cappuccinos,hot milk for lattes. hot milk froth in 70 seconds. cold milk froth in 60 seconds.
The first connected Nespresso machine. Your phone can now make the perfect cup of coffee
Brew delicious coffee without even leaving your chair
Nespresso 19 bar pressure system - Fast heat-up: 25 seconds, Rotating water tank
Compatible with Nespresso's amazing coffee pods
Smartphone APP Connectivity - Set time to automatically brew, Capsule stock management, Set time to automatically brew, Descaling, low water and maintenance alerts
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore Info
  • Prodigio and Pixie both are OriginalLine, so they will use the same capsules.
  • Prodigio is the only Bluetooth connected Nespresso machine.
  • Pixie has a 24 oz water tank while Prodigio has a 27 oz water tank.
  • The water tank of Prodigio is rotating, which means it’s more adaptable to your counter-space.
  • Pixie’s body is equipped with LED backlight which is on always or works as an indicator for an empty water tank or full used capsule drawer (flashing).
  • Pixie isn’t available with an integrated Aeroccino milk frother, but a frother can be purchased bundled with the machine.

Click here to learn more about Nespresso Pixie and how it’s different from other Nespresso machines.

Do I Have To Use the Smart App To Brew Coffee On the Nespresso Prodigio?

No, definitely not. It’s only an added feature for your convenience. The Prodigio can be used like any other Nespresso machine or through the app, the Bluetooth connectivity isn’t required.

 

 

Breville Milk Cafe Frother1

When comparing the Breville Milk Frother to other frothers on the market, it’s is the most high end, even compared to Nespresso’s Aeroccino. And that is reflected in its price, it is the most expensive among them.

So you wonder, is the Breville Milk Frother worth the extra money, if yes, then why?

Here are out top reasons why the Breville Milk Frother is worth every penny…

  • While other electric frothers have the options of hot froth or cold froth, Breville’s frother gives you the extra option to set the temperature you want. You can go from Warm, 120F, 140F or 160F. You can also do a cold stir for cold drinks.
  • It uses induction heating, which is the secret to its percise temperature and consistency. It is also quicker to heat up.
  • Unlike the other frothers, the interior of Breville’s milk frother jug is stainless steel, and not non-stick coated steel which could peel after a while.
  • With the Breville frother, you can make hot chocolate by adding your chocolate mix or shavings into the frother as its warming and frothing the milk, giving you a much richer drink.
  • It has a large capacity, up to 16 oz when frother for latte or cappuccino and up to 25 oz for hot chocolate.

Click here to learn more about Breville Milk Cafe Frother, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Watch How It Works:

Breville Milk Cafe Demo:

Drink Recipes Made with Breville Milk Cafe:

Common Questions About the Breville Milk Frother:

– What’s Included with the Breville Milk Frother?
You get the frother, 2 frothing discs with onboard storage, a lid with a measuring cup.

– Can It Be Use To Heat Milk Without Frother?
Yes, it can heat milk only.

– Can I Use The Breville Milk Frother For Iced Drinks?
Yes, simply choose the the cold stir option which will lightly froth your milk without heating it.

– What Is The Best Milk To Froth with The Breville Frother?
With any frother, the rule is, the less fat in the milk the better froth you’ll get. So skimmed, 2% will get you the best froth, full-fat milk works great too. Then we have the alternatives, Soy works, but doesn’t give the best froth, while Almond milk should work better.

– What Are The Frother Discs Made of ?
They’re made of BPA-free plastic.

Click here to learn more about Breville Milk Cafe Frother, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Saeco’s Aroma and Gaggia’s Classic both make a great choice for a compact and traditional-style espresso makers. They’re both manual espresso machines, yet they’re very beginner friendly and easy to use. In this post, we’ll look at the differences between the Saeco Aroma and Gaggia Classic to help you decide which one is best for you.

Features of Gaggia Classic:

Gaggia 14101 Classic Espresso Machine

  • 17 1/2 bar pump pressure with high voltage boiler.
  • Frothing wand that also doubles as a hot water dispenser.
  • 72-ounce removable water tank.
  • Stainless steel housing.
  • Portafilter with brass group head for temperature stability.
  • Includes single and double shot baskets, coffee scoop/measure and a tamper.
  • Ability to brew using ground coffee or E.S.E pods.
  • Measures 14-1/4 by 8 by 9-1/2 inches

Click here to learn more about Gaggia Classic, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Features of Saeco Aroma:

Philips Saeco RI9376_04 Aroma Espresso Machine

  • 15-bar pump pressure, stainless steel boiler.
  • Frothing wand with hot water dispenser.
  • 85 ounce removable water tank.
  • Portafilter with single/double baskets and E.S.E pod adapter.
  • Full stainless steel housing.
  • Measures 8 by 10 by 11-3/4 inches

Click here to learn more about Saeco Aroma, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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What Is The Difference Between Gaggia Classic and Saeco Aroma?

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TitlePhilips Saeco RI9376/04 Aroma Espresso Machine, Stainless SteelGaggia 14101 Classic Espresso Machine, Brushed Stainless Steel
FeatureTraditional espresso machine for making espresso, cappuccino, and lattes at home
Stainless-steel boiler; powerful 15-bar pump; pod-adaptable pressurized portafilter
Steam and hot-water wand with exclusive Pannarello milk-frothing device
Simple control panel; removable water tank; cup-warming surface; removable drip tray
Measures 8 by 10 by 11-3/4 inches; 1-year limited warranty
Coffee/espresso machine with 72-ounce removable water reservoir
Stainless-steel housing; brass portafilters and grouphead for temperature stability
17-1/2-bar pump with high-voltage boiler; hot-water dispenser; frothing wand
Single- and double-shot stainless-steel filter basket, tamper, and measuring scoop included
Measures 14-1/4 by 8 by 9-1/2 inches
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As you can see by reading the features of Gaggia Classic and Saeco Aroma, both machines are almost the same. The differences are very small:

  • The Gaggia has a higher pump pressure, 17 1/2 bar vs. 15 bar for the Saeco Aroma. But this isn’t a huge deal really.
  • The Saeco Aroma has a larger water reservoir with 85 oz capacity while the Gaggia Classic has 72 ounce.
  • The Saeco Aroma is smaller in size, if that’s a priority for you.

If there’s one thing that we personally believe to make a difference it’s:

  • The Gaggia Classic’s grouphead on the portafilter is made of metal entirely, this gives you better temperature stability when brewing and results in better espresso extraction.
  • The Saeco Aroma has metal baskets but the grouphead is plastic like the handle of the portafilter, which is fine in general, but isn’t as good as the Gaggia Classic.

Which One To Buy?

Gaggia Classic 2

We would recommend the Gaggia Classic simply for its superior grouphead/portafitler, which means a hotter and better espresso shot.

Click here to learn more about Gaggia Classic, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Video Reviews:

How To Install and Use Gaggia Classic:

Review of Saeco Aroma:

Common Questions:

– Is there  wait time between brewing coffee and frothing milk?

Yes, like any single-boiler espresso machine, you’ll have to wait between the two tasks. For the Gaggia Classic, it’s about 60 seconds.

– Can I Use Pre-packaged E.S.E pods?

Yes, E.S.E Pods work with both the Gaggia Classic and Saeco Aroma

-What Do I need to buy with my espresso maker?

The Gaggia already includes a coffee scoop and a tamper, so you’ll only have to include a frothing jug. As for the Saeco Aroma, no tamper is needed as the portafilter is pressurized, but you’ll still need a frothing jug. We recommend this one by Update International which will cost you less than $10.

-Do I need a coffee grinder?

A freshly ground coffee is one of the most important factor in espresso brewing. If you don’t have a grinder yet, have a look at our recommended conical burr grinders here.

 

Breville’s Barista Express espresso machine has been one of the best selling espresso maker through our website for a while. In this post, we’ll give our thoughts on the machine, why it’s worth your money and if you should buy it or not.

In this post:

What Is The Breville Barista Express and How Does It Work?

Breville The Barista Express Coffee Machine

The Barista Express is a semi-automatic espresso machine that has an integrated conical burr grinder. The grinder grinds only the amount of coffee you need right into the portafilter, so your coffee is extracted only seconds after grinding, giving you a truly aromatic shot of espresso.

The Barista Express has the ability to work automatically with pre-set shot volumes, as well as manually. All pre-sets can be reprogrammed to your preference.

The grinder on the Barista Express has a dial where you can adjust your grind and a Grind Amount dial dose the amount of grind to suit the grind size.

Other Features of the Barista Express:

  • 1600 watts thermocoil heating system.
  • Electronic water temperature control for temperature stability.
  • Purge function automatically adjusts water temperature after steam use for the best results.
  • Pre-infusion function applies low pressure water to coffee ground at the start to allow for an even espresso extraction.
  • Portafilter includes stainless steel baskets for a single or double shot.
  • Removable 67 oz water reservoir.
  • Hands-free cradle holds the portafilter when grinding directly into it.
  • Bean hopper capacity: Half a pound.

Click here to learn more about the Breville Barista Express, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Included Accessories:

Barista Express Accessories

  • Breville’s patented Razor dose trimming tool
  • 54mm stainless steel portafilter.
  • single shot basket (1 cup and 2 cup)
  • Double shot basket (1 cup and 2 cup)
  • Coffee scoop and tamper.
  • Stainless steel frothing jug.
  • Cleaning tablets, cleaning brush.
  • Water filter and water filter holder.

Click here to learn more about the Breville Barista Express, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Comparisons Between Models of the Breville Barista Express:

The Barista Express is available under two model names: BES870XL and BES860XL. It is also available under variations BES870CBXL and BES870BSXL. Wondering what’s the difference between them?

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TitleBreville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso MachineBreville BES860XL Barista Express Espresso Machine with Grinder
Feature15 Bar Italian Pump and 1600W Thermo coil heating system
Purge Function: Automatically adjusts water temperature after steam for optimal espresso extraction temperature
Stainless steel conical burr grinder with 1/2 lb. sealed bean hopper
67 fl.oz (2L) removable water tank with handle
Newer model of the Breville BES860XL Barista Express
Stainless steel conical burr grinder with ½lb bean hopper
15 bar Italian pump
1450W stainless steel thermocoil heating system
Adjustable grind size and grind amount settings
Preset, manual over-ride or re-programmable shot volumes
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We’ve done full comparisons between all these models in previous posts, which you can read by clicking here. But here’s a quick recap:

  • The BES860XL is an older version, therefor slightly less expensive, where the BES870XL is the latest version of the Barista Express.
  • The BES870XL has more power, 1600 watts compared to BES860XL’s 1450 watts.
  • It has a redesigned bean hopper.
  • The BES870XL has a hot water dispenser and it has an auto-off option that the BES860XL lacks.
  • Lastly, the BES870XL gives you better control of coffee and water temperature.

breville Barista Express red_black

As for the names BES870CBXL and BES870BSXL, these simply refer to the colors the BES870XL available in. The added CB refers to Cranberry, which is the deep red version and the BS refers to Black Sesame which is the Black version. The Barista Express BES860XL is only available in Stainless Steel.

Is The Barista Express Worth the Money?

As the Barista Express is at a range of $500 to $600, some might wonder if it’s worth your price.

If you’re keen on creating a coffee bar at your home that will last you a long time, you’ll have to buy:

  • a high quality, nicely built espresso maker.
  • a high quality conical burr grinder.
  • All necessary accessories like a frothing jug, tamper and more.

If you do the math, you’ll find that the Barista Express is a cost-efficient purchase that includes everything you need in one unit.

The Barista Express is made of high-quality parts, stainless steel housing that is easy to maintain and clean, and it has storage within it for all its accessories like portafilter, cleaning tools and such. So for what’s included with the machine, as well as the machine itself, it is absolutely worth the price.

Who Should Buy The Barista Express?

Breville BES860XL Barista Express Espresso Machine with Grinder

This machine is perfect for beginners as well as intermediate at-home baristas. For a beginner, it could be tricky to use at first, but it’s a great learning tool and you should be able to get it right in no time. And there’s always the automatic option where the machine can do it for you if you can’t.

While some might advice beginners to start with a small and easy to use espresso maker, we advice against this. It’s better that you pay more for something that will last you for a long time than spend less money on a machine that you will outgrow soon enough. So why not invest in a proper espresso maker that you won’t get bored of or have to replace soon after.

Click here to learn more about the Breville Barista Express, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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Fans of illy’s coffee should be really excited about Francis Francis’ single-serve coffee maker named Y5 which uses illy’s IperEspresso single-serve capsules. While this isn’t the first machine that uses iperEspresso capsules exclusively, there’s Gaggia for illy and the X7.1 which is also by Francis Francis. However, the Y5 has a twist that makes it special.

What Makes The Francis Francis Y5 Duo Different That other iperEspresso Machines?

Francis Francis for Illy 60072 Y5 Duo Espresso & Coffee Machine

For the first time, the Y5 Duo by Francis Francis combines an espresso machine and coffee maker. It is able to brew a shot of espresso as well as a regular cup of coffee using the same machine!

Features of the Y5 Duo:

  • A compact single serve coffee maker.
  • Premium build that combines aluminum and tempered glass.
  • Can brew espresso using illy’s iperEspresso capsules.
  • Also brews traditional cup of coffee using illy’s iperCoffee capsules.
  • Adjustable cup holder to accommodate different cup sizes.
  • Touch-sensitive buttons.
  • Adjustable coffee volume settings.
  • Automatic capsule ejection.
  • 30 oz water tank capacity.

Click here to learn more about Francis Francis Y5 Duo, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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What Is The Francis Francis Y5 Milk?

Francis Francis for Illy Y5 Milk Espresso and Coffee Machine

Francis Francis Y5 Milk is an upgraded version of the Y5 Duo. It has an integrated milk tank and frother to make milk based drinks like Cappuccino, Latte, Macchiato and more.

Features of Francis Francis Y5 Milk:

  • 6 pre-set beverage settings: espresso, coffee, cappuccino, latte, steamed milk and hot water.
  • Premium machine housing with aluminum exterior and tempered glass.
  • Touch-sensitive buttons.
  • Adjustable cup sizes.
  • Adjustable coffee volume.
  • Removable milk tank.
  • 30 oz water tank capacity.

Click here to learn more about Francis Francis Y5 Milk, read the customer reviews and buy it.

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What Is The Difference Between Francis Francis Duo and Milk?

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TitleFrancis Francis for Illy 60072 Y5 Duo Espresso & Coffee Machine, Silver/BlackFrancis Francis for Illy Y5 Milk Espresso and Coffee Machine Black
FeatureMake exceptional espresso and traditional coffee with one touch simplicity
Uses illy iper capsules exclusively
2 adjustable volume setting
Automatic capsule ejection into used capsule drawer
Power Save Mode
6 beverage options: espresso, coffee, latte macchiato, cappuccino, steamed milk, hot water
Uses illy iper Espresso and Coffee Capsules
Programmable volumes and auto-stop
Compact size and easy front accessibility
Removable milk tank can be stored in refrigerator
ReviewsRead ReviewsRead Reviews
LinkMore InfoMore Info

The biggest difference between the two machines is the integrated milk frother on the Y5 Milk. The Y5 Milk gives you a larger range of coffee drinks at a push of a button, while the Y5 Duo only makes espresso and coffee.

Video Reviews:

Francis Francis Y5 Duo:

Francis Francis Y5 Milk:

illy’s iperEspresso and iperCoffee Capsules: How Much It Costs and Where To Buy Them?

Capsule-Iperespresso

We’ve posted a detailed about illy’s iperEspresso capsules before when we compared them to Nespresso capsules. illy, which is one of the best Italian coffee brands out there, created iperEspresso to give you the same high quality of coffee you’d expect from any illy cafe, right in the comfort of your own home.

iperEspresso is available in a range of blends and intensity, from dark to medium or decaf. The capsules are packed in a can that seals in all its freshness, which results in an absolute fresh cup of coffee.

As for iper Coffee, which works with Y5 Duo, it is a newcomer to illy’s capsule selection. It works the same way as iperEspresso, but instead of espresso, it has a coffee blend for brewing a large cup of coffee.

Are iperEspresso and iperCoffee Capsules Refillable?

No, none of illy’s capsules are refillable. They’re made for a single use only.

How Much Do They Cost?

Each can of iperEspresso has 21 capsules, while iperCoffee has 18 capsules. The price depends on which blend you choose, but you should expect to pay from $0.79 to $1 per cup/capsule. It isn’t exactly cheap, but you have to keep in mind that you’ll be getting a quality cup of coffee that would cost you up to $3 or $5 at a local coffee shop. So you’ll actually be saving lots of money by making your coffee house style drinks at home.

Are Any Capsules Included with the Purchase of a Machine?

Unfortunately, no capsules are included with the purchase of your machine, which is the only CON to this. You’ll have to buy some capsules to get started with your machine.

Where To Buy iperEspresso and iperCoffee Capsules?

They’re available online either on illy’s online store or Amazon. Locally, you’ll find them in major stores like Bed Bath and Beyond or Target.

 
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