2021's Best Drip Coffee Maker: A Detailed Review

Espresso coffee maker

Ah, coffee. The nectar of the gods.

Over the years, people have come up with numerous ways to extract this sweet ambrosia, one of the most popular being the drip coffee maker.

Whether you dash into your local Starbucks on your way to work for a morning pick-me-up, or you ground your own coffee every morning, your workday is going to go much better if you have a perfect cup to start.

But.

Not all coffee makers are created equally.

With so many options available, how do you choose the right one for you?

Do you want a traditional brewer, or a more modern one? Are nifty bonus features crucial to you, or do you want a drip coffee maker that does one thing well?

We know you take your coffee seriously, and we do too. That’s why, here at Nomad Coffee Club, we’ve created a list of the best drip coffee makers you can buy in 2021.

But first, we’ve got some buying tips to share. If you’re short on time, feel free to jump ahead.

The Quick List

Buying Tips: What You Should Know Before Choosing a Drip Coffee Maker

The Ultimate 2021 Best Drip Coffee Maker List

Drip Coffee Makers: The Ultimate Showdown

Get Your Coffee Needs Taken Care of With a Nomad Coffee Club Subscription

Buying Tips: What You Should Know Before Choosing the Right Drip Coffee Maker

Carafe Capacity

Ask yourself this: how many cups of coffee do you need in the morning? Is it only you needing your morning caffeine fix, or are you a family of coffee addicts? Do you need a drip coffee maker for an office?

Think about how much coffee you need to brew, and factor it into your decision.

We’ve got two important pieces of advice here for you:

  • Choose a brewer with a big capacity carafe, so there’s no need to brew all the time.
  • Use a thermal carriage, as it’ll keep your brewed coffee hot for longer without changing your coffee’s quality or taste.

Note: A glass carafe will keep your coffee warm if you put it on a warming plate, but this will also affect the taste of the coffee negatively.

Programming Features

If you’re on a tight schedule, choose a drip machine that’s programmable. There are drip coffee makers that can be set to remain hot or turn on at particular times.

Note: There are also drip coffee makers that can brew a cup of coffee with lighting speed, and that don’t need to be programmed in advance. Determine if you’d rather use this before getting a brewer.

Size

Take a look at the available space in your kitchen or office — or wherever your drip coffee maker will be placed. Compare the available space with the dimensions of the coffee brewer to be sure it’ll fit. 

Our personal recommendation: go for a compact-sized brewer no matter your area’s size, as it’ll be easy to fit pretty much anywhere.

Price

While it’s true that there are drip coffee makers available for as low as $25, this price will go up with the more features you want.

Notable expensive coffee maker features include:

  • Built-in Wi-Fi
  • Programmable
  • Touch screen
  • Steam wand — to froth milk
  • Custom designs — stainless steel, mahogany, walnut, teak, sapele 

Another thing to consider: a drip coffee maker brings with it additional expenses. Depending on the coffee machine you go for, you’ll also have to pay for:

  • Cleaning equipment
  • Coffee beans
  • Pods

SCA Certification

Having a stamp of approval from the Specialty Coffee Association of America is like having a stamp of approval from the coffee gods.

If a brewer has an SCA certification, it means it has passed the requirements for:

SCA only certifies a couple of coffee machines a year. Getting a coffee maker certified by them will leave you in no doubt as to its quality.

The Ultimate 2021 Best Drip Coffee Maker List

Precision Master: Breville BDC450 Coffee Maker With Thermal Carafe

brew basket, automatic drip, best coffee maker
Amazon | Breville BDC450BSS Precision Brewer Coffee Maker

Why’s Breville our #1 pick? As the precision in its name says, you can control everything:

  • Coffee volume — due to the flat bottom and cone filter baskets
  • Temperature
  • Flow rate

Temperature controls include:

The device features a:

  • Patent-pending steep and release valve — For perfect flavor and aroma extraction
  • Gold cup mode — Automatically sets up the temperature and steep time according to SCA standards

There are six brewing modes to choose from:

  • Gold
  • Fast
  • Strong
  • Iced
  • Cold Brew
  • My Brew

This device does pretty much everything.

However. It could be too much for some coffee lovers.

If you’re into simplicity, we’ve got more for you ahead.

What We Like

  • Clean, modern look
  • Pours without making a mess
  • Great tasting coffee
  • Gives you total control over your coffee
  • Programmable

What We Don’t Like

  • Loud
  • High price

What Others Said About It

Julie customer review

SCA Certified: OXO Brew 8 Cup 

best coffee maker, coffee beans
Amazon | OXO Brew and Cup Coffee Maker

Why is OXO a top-notch choice? Because it has:

  • A rainmaker shower head which evenly distributes water over the grounds
  • A vacuum-insulated thermal carafe with a pour-through lid
  • A simple interface

Most importantly — it’s SCA certified. Which means this coffee maker has met their Golden Cup Standard.

It’s guaranteed to:

  • Heat the water to the ideal brewing temperature — 195°F to 205°F
  • Brew a whole pot of coffee in 4 to 6 minutes

You’ll get the best tasting coffee with this device, because it optimizes:

  • Water temperature
  • Water volume
  • Brewing time

Did you know? This coffee maker comes equipped with a thermal stainless steel carafe. This means heat retention is guaranteed. 

What We Like

  • SCA certified
  • The water reservoir is easy to fill
  • Optimal brew strength and temperature
  • Can fit both short and tall mugs because of the removable well cover
  • Designed to fit under kitchen cabinets

What We Don't Like

  • Small capacity
  • Not programmable

What Others Said About It

Betty Brookfield customer review

Back to Basics: Bonavita Connoisseur 8-Cup One-Touch Coffee Brewer

Bonavita Coffee Maker
Amazon | Bonavita Coffee Maker

If flavor and ease of use are your two criteria, Bonavita Connoisseur is the best option for you.

Notable features of the Bonavita Connoisseur include:

  • Spray head — Helps with coffee grounds extraction, as it distributes water over the bed of coffee grounds
  • Flat-bottomed filter basket — The shape makes it easier for water to disperse through the coffee grounds before draining
  • Pre-infusion mode — Wets the grounds before brewing to prime them
  • 1500-watt heater produces optimal brewing temperature — 195°F to 205°F

The Connoisseur even has measurements on the water tank. These make using this device even easier, as you’ll always know how many grams of coffee to use for any pot size.

It’s also easy to clean, as the carafe lid, filter basket, and showerhead are all dishwasher safe.

What We Like

  • Easy to use
  • Stainless steel thermal carafe
  • Compact design
  • The price

What We Don’t Like

  • The lid — it has to be screwed on after brewing
  • Not programmable

What Others Said About It

SteelNlead customer review

Versatility Winner: Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System

Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System
Amazon | Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System

Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System is the Swiss Army Knife of the coffee maker world. 

If you’re into versatility, look no further. Ninja comes equipped with a programmable brewer — with a reusable filter, milk frother, and a thermal, glass carafe. Among others, it can make:

  • Iced coffee
  • Solid drip
  • Latte
  • Cold-brew

Plus, this coffee brewer has a tea brew basket — usable both with tea bags and loose leaves — which makes it perfect for tea lovers.

You can choose the drink size for both hot and cold beverages — from small cups to full carafes — and it can keep the drink’s temperature for up to two hours, due to its thermal carafe.

Whether you’re into hot coffee or cold brew, this is the best coffee maker for you

What We Like

  • Flexibility
  • Adjustable temperature
  • Thermal carafe
  • Drink options

What We Don’t Like

  • Plastic water tank, as it feels cheap
  • No marked measures on the water tank
  • The hole in the middle of the carafe, which leads to splashing

What Others Said About It

Rick Segal Customer review

Perfect Balance Between Single-Serve and Full Pot: Cuisinart DCC-3000

Cuisinart Coffee Maker
Amazon | Cuisinart Coffee Maker

What makes this automatic drip Cuisinart device special? Its internal coffee reservoir — no jostling of full carafe needed to pour your cup of joe.

What’s more is the charcoal water filter, as well as the cold-tone coffee filter. What do these mean for you? A rich, aromatic, flavorful cup of coffee with every pour.

Cuisinart uses Coffee on Demand technology and doesn't rely on typical single cup Keurig style coffee pods. It brews cup by cup to ensure your brew is always fresh, and that there is always a hot cup on demand.

Another nifty feature is the “coffee gauge,” which counts the remaining cups, so you’ll always know when it’s time for a new brew.

What We Like

  • Advanced brew programming system — you can set it up 24h prior to use
  • Shut-off and cleaning system
  • Charcoal water filter and gold-tone filter for rich flavor
  • Removable drip tray

What We Don’t Like

  • Brews only one cup at a time

What Others Said About It

Patrick bucko customer review

Grounder + Brewer in One: Black + Decker Mill and Brew Coffeemaker

Black Decker coffee maker
Amazon | Black + Decker Coffee Maker

Are you sick of desperately wanting your dose of java, only to realize you’re out of ground coffee?

Black + Decker Mill and Brew is the answer.

There’s no need to pre-ground coffee anymore — this mill and brewing device has a streamlined grind-to-brew system. It grinds the coffee beans just before brewing them, ensuring you’ll always have a fresh cup of coffee.

For days when you have an especially busy schedule, you can sort out your coffee drinking in advance.

This coffee machine comes with its QuickTouch Programming system, which allows you to program 24h ahead of time.

There’ll be deliciously brewed coffee waiting for you in the glass carafe when you wake up.

What We Like

  • You can use both coffee beans and grounds
  • You can choose the brew strength
  • No more hassle of having to ground your coffee

What We Don’t Like

  • Learning curve — you’ll have to experiment with the grinder settings before you find your optimal grind level

What Others Said About It

Drexler customer review

Drip Coffee Makers: The Ultimate Showdown

Drip Coffee Maker Material Capacity Dimensions Weight (lbs) Current Price
Breville BDC450BSS Stainless Steel, Thermal Carafe 12 cubic cm 12.4 x 6.7 x 15.7 3.15 $299.95
Oxo Brew 8 Cup Stainless Steel, Glass 64 fluid ounces 10.5 x 7 x 13.5 11.51 $169.99
Bonavita Connoisseur Stainless Steel 8 gallons 12.4 x 6.8 x 12.2 6.13 $145.99
Ninja Hot and Cold Brew System Plastic, Metal, Rubber 1 fluid ounce 11.81 x 10.01 x 15 11.09 $179.99
Cuisinart DCC 3000 Metal, Plastic 1 cup 22.5 x 14.2 x 17.2 9 $99.95
Black + Decker 12-Cup Mill and Brew Plastic 12 cubic cm 10 x 13.5 x 15.5 9.5 $74.18

Get Your Coffee Needs Taken Care of With a Nomad Coffee Club Subscription

Our recommendation for choosing the perfect drip coffee maker? Think about your needs and what will best suit your lifestyle.

The only thing remaining to do — make sure you never run out of great coffee.

Here at Nomad Coffee Club, we offer 3, 6, or 12-month coffee subscriptions.

By choosing our coffee, you’ll get:

  • Fresh specialty coffee
  • A different coffee every month
  • Coffee roasted in Los Angeles, CA
  • Free shipping within the US

To learn more about our commitment to provide fresh water and help educate children in Africa, take a look here.

To learn how to make a barista-quality coffee yourself, here are our fantastic brew guides.

Related Posts

Best Cold Brew Coffee Maker: A Detailed Review
Best Cold Brew Coffee Maker: A Detailed Review
Weak coffee is truly a disappointment. But you no longer need to relegate yourself to such a fate. Instead, you can cold
Read More
How to Make Pour-Over Coffee at Home
How to Make Pour-Over Coffee at Home
Looking to add pour-over coffee to your morning wake-up roster? Look no further. Our pour-over recipe provides a simple
Read More

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published