10 BEST SUPER AUTOMATIC ESPRESSO MACHINE REVIEWS
The popularity of coffee drinks increased so rapidly over the last decade that it can sometimes seem like a new shop opens daily in your town. Whether you head to Starbucks, a local mom and pop shop or pick up coffee from a fast food restaurant, you likely spend more time waiting in line than you would like.
Others feel the same way as you, which is why they invest in super automatic espresso machines that they can use in their own homes. Though the name super automatic might make you think that these models are far too hard for novices to use, the name comes from the fact that these models do more things for you without requiring that you have a lot of experience.
A built-in bean hopper holds any of the beans that you want to use, and a built-in grinder will break the beans down into the perfect consistency for any type of coffee. These products can also boil the water, froth the milk and add a touch of warm milk or a thick layer of frothed milk on a cappuccino.
KRUPS, Gaggia and SAECO are just a few of the companies that now make super automatic espresso machines for home baristas, but the DeLonghi ECAM28465M Prima Donna (Check Price on Amazon.com) is easily the best of the best. The Prima Donna Deluxe has a housing made from stainless steel, a digital display with a backlit feature, built-in recipes for the most popular specialty drinks and automatic cleaning settings.
Top Rated Models on the Market
The DeLonghi ECAM28465M Prima Donna has a built-in memory function that actually remembers the last drink you made and gives you the option of making that exact drink again without entering the main menu or making any new selections.
If you do want to try something different, just press any of the other buttons to make a latte macchiato, cappuccino or cafe latte. When you pick a recipe that requires milk, the Prima Donna will froth the milk inside the dedicated canister before adding it to the cup, and with some recipes, it will actually layer the milk and coffee together.
DeLonghi offers more help and support than any other manufacturer of coffee makers, and it provides all customers with a hotline that they can call with questions or when they need assistance.
Capable of making single and double espresso shots, the Prima Donna can also make single cups or two cups in the same brewing cycle, and adjustable spouts give you more space for making drinks that require taller cups.
Internal settings let you make adjustments based on things like hard water or your temperature preference, and a shutoff feature shuts the machine down to save on power.
When looking at super automatic espresso machines, it’s impossible to identify the top models without looking at those from DeLonghi, and the DeLonghi ECAM28465M Prima Donna comes with the same dependable warranty offered by the manufacturer and more features than you’ll find on other models from this company and others.
Also called the Prima Donna Deluxe, it has a backlit design that brightens the digital display for viewing the options available without searching for the light switch after a long night. This display is unique because it works with the buttons on the side, and when you click one button, you can use the arrows to adjust the strength or temperature.
Capable of brewing or two cups, depending on the option that you selected, the machine has two coffee spouts that can work independently for pouring coffee into two cups or together for more quickly filling a single cup, and those spouts also adjust to bring the height up or down to work with the cups you use. A built-in memory function will actually remember all the settings you selected the last time you made a cup to brew a drink hours or days later with those same preferences and settings.
The hot water spigot releases hot water right into a cup, mug or glass placed beneath for brewing drinks that do not use coffee beans, and this feature also lets you rinse your mugs with hot water to increase the heat of the mug to make your own drink stay hotter.
Separate buttons on top control both the steam wand and the milk frother, and you can turn the knob on the milk canister to lock it into place before frothing and to quickly clean that canister. With certain recipes, the Prima Donna Deluxe will add frothed or steam milk to your cup before or after adding coffee.
One-touch buttons on the SAECO Philips Intelia Deluxe make common drinks like an espresso, espresso luncho or cappuccino, and once you customize your settings, the unit will make those drinks without requiring that you put in your preferences first.
If you share this with your coworkers at the office or your loved ones at home, you’ll appreciate this feature because users can now make all their favorite drinks without spending a lot of time hovering around the machine. Pressing the Special Drinks button will access the recipe menu and let you choose from other drinks too.
A patented Quick Heat Boiler reduces wait time and helps the water reach a higher temperature faster for more efficient brewing, but this boiler also retains its temperature between uses to help everyone get the drinks they want to be made without a line forming.
Its automatic rinse cycle sends clean water through the machine to remove any debris or residue, which lets your coffee come out tasting stronger and more flavorful, and the model’s digital screen will actually update you when it identifies a problem or when it needs some maintenance like more beans in the hopper, more water in the tank or descaling.
Its ceramic grinder uses individual burrs that break the coffee beans into more convenient shapes before further grinding those beans into a lighter powder, but you can choose the right grind setting based on the drinks that you love. Other features you can customize include the strength of the aroma, the strength of the coffee or the water temperature.
A milk froth button controls the amount of forth found in the milk you add to the included milk canister, and the model has a bypass door that lets you make coffee ground previously ground beans when the time is at a premium.
Many commercial kitchens and professional restaurants use Gaggia espresso and coffee maker to make the types of specialty drinks that customers love, and with this Gaggia Anima Prestige, you can make those same drinks yourself.
As the ideal model for those who like saving time in the morning, this model features one-touch buttons that make popular drinks with a single touch and a digital screen that helps you customize your drinks. The ability to customize drinks makes this one of the best super automatic models for offices too, and its bean-to-cup option will grind the beans and make the drink that a user selects in minimal time.
Many of its top features have a built-in design like the 8.8-ounce bean hopper that you can access via the back of the machine and a 60-ounce water reservoir that slides out from the back for filling with water from any tap or faucet. The bypass doser, which is on top of the machine, turns this into a one-stop espresso machine because it lets you make a drink from ground coffee instead of beans, which can also help you save some time.
You can pick from three different temperature settings and change the strength of the aroma produced as the machine brews espressos. Convenient notifications and reminders come across the screen to alert you to problems like an empty bean hopper or when the tank runs low on water, but those alerts will also tell you when the Anima Prestige needs routine maintenance or descaling.
Four of the buttons on the front let you make an espresso, cappuccino, latte macchiato or espresso lungo, but the other two buttons adjust the aroma level and let you access the main menu. The Anima Prestige will also filter your water to remove anything that might impart a new flavor on your beans.
SAECO went back to the drawing board and listened to feedback from customers to make this SAECO Pure Automatic, which features a more modern design that significantly reduces your wait time. This new design included a Quick Heat Boiler that begins heating the water as soon as you hit the power button, but this boiler also regulates that water temperature as the liquid mixes with the beans and produces steam to ensure that you never run out of the heat that you need.
The rich and deep black finish of the machine adds to its modern appeal and makes this a nice choice for those tired of chrome or stainless steel machines.
The milk frother on the Pure Automatic uses the same classic design as those found on professional restaurant espresso makers, and it moves to the very bottom of the cup or canister, which allows the steam to move bubbles all the way through the milk to create a thicker and more richer froth. Customized settings make use of all your favorite preferences to make a coffee, cappuccino or espresso that has the aroma, strength and water amount that you like.
Some of the top and most impressive features that make the SAECO Pure Automatic stand out even more include:
• a spout that adjusts to different heights to reduce heat loss between the machine and cup
• a brewing group head that completely comes out of the machine for wiping off stuck-on residue and regular maintenance
• a rinsing cycle that comes on automatically between uses for removing coffee bean dust
• a descaling cycle that can remove the minerals and heavy metals left behind from your hard water
• adjustable grinder settings for making the fine grinds suitable for espresso and the coarser grinds that are better for the traditional drink
KRUPS is a name that many coffee drinkers know because the company makes so many different models for home use, but KRUPS is also the manufacturer of this EA8298 Super Automatic Latte Espresso Compact Size, which is the best model for those who have less space.
Measuring a fraction of the size as other models, it fits onto any counter and weighs so little that you can tuck it away when you need to use your counters. The EA8298 has a conical burr grinder built-in for more accurately and effectively grinding coffee beans.
A bean hopper with its own aroma seal has a convenient design that you can open for adding more beans, but the seal around the top of that hoppers preserves the true flavor of the beans and keeps those beans fresh for grinding. The grinder has various settings for coarsely grinding beans to make a true espresso and for finely grinding beans when making a latte or coffee. As the hopper releases beans into the grinder, the grinder will tamp down the beans to grind each one into the same fine or coarse powder required.
The control panel, which you can access right in the center of the machine, has an LCD screen that shows the drink recipes available and the current time, and as you turn the knob beneath that screen, it will cycle through those recipes as well as through the other settings.
An integrated milk canister has its own tight lid that preserves and keeps milk fresh, but this canister will attach back to the model via a long plastic hose that forces steam into the canister for frothing and steaming the milk. Many of the parts on the machine, including the drip tray and 60-ounce water tank, are removable for cleaning.
The best DeLonghi super espresso maker for those who just can’t justify spending more than $1,000 is the ESAM5500B Perfecta Digital with Cappuccino Function, which uses a cappuccino function for brewing perfect cappuccinos that have just the right amount of foam.
Its Single Touch system asks that you fill the canister with milk and insert that canister into the appropriate spot on the machine before brewing a cappuccino, but once everything is in place, the machine will use your beans, water, and milk to make a cappuccino that looks like something off a restaurant menu.
The steam wand fits inside that canister and steams the milk from the bottom to the top for more consistent froth, but this wand can also produce the hot water required for making tea from a bag or hot chocolate from a mix.
A digital control panel keeps track of both the current time and the time remaining in each cycle, and you can use that menu to program your own settings for making a customized cup. The panel also shows the strength and the water temperature. With an automatic shut off feature, this model will monitor when you last used it and automatically shut down when enough time passes.
Its double boiler system allows the Perfecta to heat the water to two different temperatures for making steam and coffee together, and this system lets you make a cappuccino followed by an espresso without any pauses. The DeLonghi Direct-to-Brew makes coffee from full beans that the machine itself grinds in minutes.
This Gaggia Anima is the ideal for those who want to make espressos alone. While other models will also make cafe lattes and cappuccinos, the Anima comes with just two built-in recipes that make an espresso or an espresso lungo. A lungo typically consists of a single shot with extra hot water that tones down the flavor and reduces its strength, and the Anima will automatically add the perfect amount of hot water when you make one of these drinks.
When you or a guest wants to turn an espresso into a cappuccino, you can use the patented steam wand, which Gaggia designed to work just like the wands on its commercial models. This wand is deep enough to reach the bottom of your cup and comes with a swiveling head that helps it reach the edges of the cup or canister. A steam button increases and decreases the amount of steam produced, and when you select the hot water button, this wand will actually dispense hot water from the interior tank.
Three temperature settings rise from a minimum of around 175 degrees Fahrenheit to a maximum of near 185 degrees Fahrenheit, which is similar to the temperature produced by commercial espresso machines. When you make coffee, the heat from the machine dries out the ground and creates small pucks from those grounds. This model has a built-in bin that can hold up to 15 of those pucks.
As many DeLonghi models are large and take up a lot of counters or kitchen space, its ECAM22110SB Compact Automatic is the excellent compact model that is particularly great for apartment dwellers and college students who live in cramped dorm rooms.
Like its big brothers, it comes with a backlit digital screen, one-touch buttons and a bean hopper that sits inside the product and rises slightly over the top. As it has its own filtration system that removes more than 90% of heavy metals and minerals from the water, you can use it with tap water from your own faucet.
The aroma button controls both the amount of aroma produced as well as the flavor of the beans because it determines the amount of water to use based on the aroma strength you want, and it will slowly infuse a small amount of water to make the beans open up. It adds more water as necessary until the coffee beans reach the maximum aroma level. The beans remain in the bean hopper until you want to make coffee, and the burr grinder ensures that no beans go to waste.
With bypass chute, also called a bypass doser, you can now make decaf coffee for a guest without the coffee moving through the machine and touching your beans, and this bypass door lets you use ground coffee and the water you already poured inside the tank.
The display screen shows the selections that you made, and buttons near this screen let you choose between a single or double shot of espresso as well as a single cup or two cups of another specialty drink. When making a latte or a cappuccino, the ECAM22110SB will mix steam with the milk to produce a richer foam for use with that drink.
One of the more affordable superautomatic models that get good reviews online is the KRUPS EA8250 Espresseria, which comes with a 60-ounce water tank and a built-in burr grinder.
Burr grinders operate at a faster speed than other types of grinders and feature small burrs across the surface that grind beans down to a finer or coarser powder that mixes with water to make coffee that tastes fuller or richer without any burnt flavors lingering in the background.
A top-loading bean hopper helps you keep the machine stocked with beans, but an aroma lid on that hopper preserves both the aroma and the flavor of the beans, meaning you can come back weeks from now and find fresh beans waiting for you.
Professional features found on the Espresseria include a hydraulic tamping system that tamps down the grounds to extra more of the full coffee flavor, a 15-bar pump that mimics the pumps found on traditional Italian model and a thermoblock heating system that keeps the water temperature stable.
Once it grinds and uses coffee beans, the model uses heat to dry out the beans and turn those beans into a small cake that you can remove from the machine before you make more coffee. Both the cake container and the drip tray come out of the machine too.
While an LCD screen helps you keep track of your coffee as it brews, the knob underneath this screen controls the settings and can help you adjust the strength of the coffee before it brews. In addition to making authentic Italian espressos, the Espresseria can also make cappuccinos and similar drinks. The steam nozzle turns ordinary milk into a thicker crema for coffee, and while the machine will not instantly add the milk to your cup, it will work with larger canisters for making multiple drinks.
Super automatic espresso machines require that you have enough beans to fill the hopper, but this Cuisinart EM-600 Buona Tazza Superautomatic Single Serve offers a twist on those machines. Instead of using whole beans, it actually works with those coffee pods that you can pick up from any store. Each pod can make exactly one cup of espresso, and you can use different pods inside this machine for making coffee, caffe drinks, a latte, espresso or cappuccino.
Six buttons feature bright blue LED lights and have a one-touch design for making specialty drinks or for making a single or double espresso shot, and the other buttons will adjust the temperature up and down and turn on the steam wand. That wand, which you won’t find on other pod machines, can froth up to 22 ounces of milk in the included canister for topping up to six cappuccinos.
A water tank holds a full 34 ounces, which can make up to 20 single shots of espresso. Cuisinart designed a steam burst feature that shoots more steam through the steam wand to automatically clean it after it goes in the milk canister.
Our Choice for the Excellent Model
There really is no doubt that the DeLonghi ECAM28465M Prima Donna (Check Price on Amazon.com) is the best model that money can buy. Not only does it make espressos, but you can also use the built-in recipes and buttons to make other specialty drinks, including a cappuccino and a cafe latte. The Prima Donna Deluxe comes backed with a great warranty from the manufacturer and a customer support number that you can call for help.
With automatic cleaning cycles, a hot water spigot, and a milk canister, the Prima Donna Deluxe can make coffee, hot tea, and all your other favorite hot drinks.