Which Is the Best Espresso Machine Under $1000?

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Yes, it is possible to find a machine that makes amazing espressos without breaking the bank. In this article, I’ll introduce you to some of the best espresso machines under $1000. Along the way, we’ll also look at the different types of espresso machines to help you decide what type is right for your home coffee bar.

There exists a perfect espresso machine for every coffee lover, whether you want a classic espresso machine that you can hone your barista skills on or a super-automatic espresso maker that will just deliver a great espresso, latte, or cappuccino every time at the touch of a button.

Quick Answer: Best Espresso Machines Under $1000

Image Product

Best espresso machine under $1000

Breville Barista Express...image Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine, Brushed Stainless Steel, BES870XL Check price

Best super-automatic espresso machine under $1000

PHILIPS 3200 Series...image PHILIPS 3200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine - Classic Milk Frother, 4 Coffee Varieties, Intuitive Touch Display, Black, (EP3221/44) Check price

Best value espresso machine under $1000

Espresso Machine &...image Espresso Machine & Cappuccino Maker with Milk Steamer- 7 pc All-In-One Barista Bundle Set w/Built-In Milk Frother (Inc: Coffee Bean Grinder, Milk Frothing Cup, Spoon/Tamper & 2 Cups), Silver Check price

Best high-end espresso machine under $1000

Rancilio Silvia Espresso...image Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machinet,0.3 liters, with Iron Frame and Stainless Steel Side Panels, 11.4 by 13.4-Inch Check price

Best capsule espresso machine under $1000

Nespresso Lattissima Pro...image Nespresso Lattissima Pro Espresso Machine by De'Longhi with Milk Frother, Silver Check price

Best quiet and powerful espresso machine under $1000

Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic...image Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Pro Espresso Machine, 21 Liters,Solid, Brushed Stainless Steel Check price

Honorable mention

Mr. Coffee Espresso...image Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Machine, Programmable Coffee Maker with Automatic Milk Frother and 15-Bar Pump, Stainless Steel Check price

Manual vs Semi-Automatic vs Automatic Espresso Machines

Semi-automatic espresso machines

A high-end semi-automatic espresso machine with a digital display

Semi-automatic espresso makers are the most common and probably the ones you picture when you think of an espresso maker. These machines require you to do some work, but they are much simpler to use than manual espresso makers (more on those in a minute).

With semi-automatic espresso machines, you have to manually fill the portafilter (that long-handled metal espresso filter) with coffee grounds, tamp it down, attach it to the machine, and press the brew button. From there, the machine does almost all of the work. These machines are fairly easy to use, although there is an art to properly filling and tamping the grounds.

Automatic espresso machines

A super-automatic espresso machine, the easiest espresso makers to use

Automatic espresso machines, also often called super-automatic espresso makers, are the easiest way to make your shot of espresso or favorite espresso beverage. These machines take care of measuring, filling, and tamping the grounds for you. They also measure out the water. Some connect directly to the water source, meaning you may not even have to fill a water reservoir. Basically, all you have to do is insert a cup and press a button or two.

These machines are generally more expensive than other options, which means you won’t find many options for super-automatic espresso machines under 1000 dollars, but there are a few if you are willing to sacrifice some of the features of the high-end machines. These machines also take up more counter space than semi-automatic machines, so be sure to plan for that when purchasing one.

Manual espresso machines

A manual espresso machine, showing the lever used to operate it

Manual espresso machines — also known as lever espresso machines — are more of a gimmick than a practical appliance these days. You can make an amazing shot of espresso with them, but it takes practice. The process starts much like that of the semi-automatic machines — filling a portafilter, tamping it down, and inserting it into the machine. But once the water heats up, you have to press down a lever to push the water through the grounds. The speed at which you move the lever impacts the quality of the espresso, so this is one more step that you’ll have to perfect.

Manual espresso machines are fairly compact, but you may find that they are pricier than some budget semi-automatic machines. The reason for this is simple: manual machines often use higher-end materials and higher-quality builds.

Capsule Espresso Machines

A capsule espresso machine, showing the capsules that it uses to make shots of espresso

If simplicity is your goal,  capsule espresso makers are another way to go. As you’ve probably surmised, most of the complication of making espresso comes from the coffee grounds. These machines eliminate the need to fill a portafilter and tamp down the grounds because the grounds are replaced with pods that contain the appropriate amount of pre-ground coffee beans. You simply insert the pod into the machine, and you are good to go.

These machines do have a few downsides. Capsules are more expensive than espresso beans. They are also much less environmentally friendly, even if you only purchase recyclable pods. You won’t find the same amount of variety in coffee capsules as you will with coffee beans either. You can negate some of these downsides if you buy a machine that uses reusable capsules, but that negates some of the advantages of having the capsules. 

Best Espresso Makers Under $1000

Best espresso machine under $1000: Breville BES870XL Barista Express

  • Please refer to user guide or user manual or user guide (provided below in PDF) before first use

Breville delivers an impressive simplification to the espresso-making process by introducing a built-in conical burr grinder to this semi-automatic espresso maker. The built-in grinder delivers pre-measured and freshly ground coffee directly into the portafilter. From there, simply move the portafilter over to the integrated tamper and you are ready to make a delicious drink. 

There is an easy-to-use grind size dial, automated dispensing of the proper amount for a single or double shot, and a manual dispensing option if you have custom needs. The built-in stainless steel steam wand allows you to froth milk for delicious lattes and cappuccinos. The bean hopper is tinted to protect the beans from light that can cause degradation. 

Cleaning and maintenance are impressively easy, and the machine is very sturdy. There’s even an indicator to let you know when it’s time to clean the machine. The only downside of this machine is that there is a noticeable learning curve for making an ideal cup of espresso. You’ll make a great cup the first time, but it’ll take some time to master.

Best super-automatic espresso machine under $1000: Philips 3200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine

  • With Philips 3200 Series easily make up to 5 black and milk-based coffee varieties at the touch of a button! Enjoy the delicious taste and aroma of coffee from fresh beans at the perfect temperature
  • Classic Milk Frother System: Dispenses steam, allowing you to easily prepare silky smooth milk froth for your cappuccino
  • Intuitive Touch Display: Select the perfect coffee for your mood with just one touch
  • My Coffee Choice Menu: Adjust the strength and quantity of your beverage and choose from three different settings to suit your preferences. The Aroma Extract system intelligently strikes the optimum balance between brewing temperature and aroma extraction by keeping the water temperature between 90 and 98°C
  • Powerful Filter and Easy Maintenance: Thanks to the AquaClean, enjoy clear and purified water - by changing the filter after being prompted by the machine, you will not need to descale your machine for up to 5000 cups

Don’t let the array of buttons fool you, this is an incredibly easy to use machine. Just like with all the best automatic espresso machines, most drinks can be made at the touch of a single button, and the additional options exist to allow you to further optimize the beverage.

The Philips 3200 has instant options for espresso, hot water, coffee, Americano, and espresso lungo. There are additionally three aroma strength levels, 12 grind options, and 3 temperature settings. The built-in steam wand allows you to froth milk, turning your espresso into a delicious latte. If you want a machine that can make both espresso and a regular cup of coffee — and even heat water for tea — this is the best option available in the price range.

The removable brew group (the main part of the unit where the brewing occurs) greatly simplifies the cleaning process, which is important because you will want to clean this machine regularly. The wand could be higher quality and easier to clean, but it is perfectly fine for most coffee lovers that want an automatic espresso maker.

Best value espresso machine under $1000: EspressoWorks All-in-One Espresso Machine

  • Includes: 15 Bar Pump Espresso & Cappuccino Maker, Electric Coffee Bean Grinder, Stainless Steel Portafilter with Single and Double Shot Filter Baskets, Milk frothing pitcher, Scoop/Tamper, 2 Ceramic Espresso Cups
  • ESPRESSO MACHINE and LATTE MAKER 15 BAR PUMP PRESSURE SYSTEM- Make great espresso at home, Americano at home, and Macchiato at home without going to the coffee shop!
  • A SINGLE SHOT AND A DOUBLE SHOT OF ESPRESSO – Includes a single and double shot stainless steel filter to chose your espresso shot size. Compatible with ESE Pods.
  • A VIEWABLE REMOVABLE WATER TANK (1.25L capacity) lets you view the water level conveniently from the front. The handle on the tank makes it easy to remove, clean, and refill the tank.
  • OVER 25,000 UNITS SOLD with an Outstanding Customer service team! Available 24/7 to provide personal assistance at any time!

You don’t have to break the bank to get a great espresso machine. This is one of the cheapest quality espresso machines on the market, and it comes with everything you need to get started: a coffee grinder, a milk frothing cup, two cups, and a tamper.

The EspressoWorks uses 15 bars of pressure, which is the recommended level for a quality espresso machine. Many cheaper units use only 9 bars, resulting in subpar espresso. It has a built-in steam wand, so you can make cappuccinos with ease. 

Since it’s a cheaper machine, you are probably expecting a downside or two — and it does have them. The portafilter handle doesn’t feel particularly durable, and there are reports of it breaking if not handled with care. It takes more effort to create a strong espresso with this machine, particularly because it doesn’t heat the water as much as some higher-quality espresso makers.

Also, the grinder included in the package is a low-end blade grinder. Blade grinders don’t grind beans consistently enough for good espresso, so you might want to replace it with a better coffee grinder if you intended to grind your own coffee beans.

Best high-end espresso machine under $1000: Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine

  • Ergonomic porta filter handle same as the proven design of Rancilio commercial machines
  • Commercial grade group head for superb heat stability and extraction quality
  • Articulating steam wand offers complete range of motion and professional steaming knob precisely controls steaming pressure
  • Classic linear design fits most decors
  • Optional pod and capsule adaptor kit available

If you want your espresso maker to have all kinds of fancy features — all the bells and whistles that you can show off to your friends — this is not the machine for you. Instead of an epic set of features, Rancilio provides quality. From the high-grade materials to the impressively sturdy design, this machine is built to make the best espresso. And it’s built to last, too.

Their machine is made from an iron frame and stainless steel side panels, something you would expect only in a much higher price range. The ergonomic portafilter handle is a huge improvement for those that find standard portafilters uncomfortable to use when making multiple drinks. It also comes with two filter baskets — one for single shots and one for double shots.

The commercial-grade articulating steam wand and professional steaming knob offer a range of motion and pressure control that is incredibly hard to find in this price range. From the get-go, this machine will make an amazing beverage, and with a bit of practice, it will let you make the best espresso shots of your life.

Best capsule espresso machine under $1000: Nespresso Lattissima Pro

  • Please refer to user guide or user manual or user guide (provided below in PDF) before first use

The highest level of simplicity comes with pod-based machines, and there’s really no doubt that Nespresso has the best pod espresso makers. The Lattissma Pro is one of the highest-end models in Nespresso’s original line, and it gets my vote for the best Nespresso machine overall.

To start, this machine uses a whopping 19 bars of pressure! As I mentioned above, 15 bars is the recommended level for quality espresso. More is still better (to a point), and Nespresso went above and beyond when designing this machine.

The design is incredibly sleek, and the touchscreen display is as intuitive as they come. At the touch of a button, you can have a delicious cappuccino, latte macchiato, espresso, lungo, warm milk froth, or just hot water. That’s a range of options that even some of the best super-automatic espresso machines can’t match.

Not only is the Lattissima Pro easy to use, but it’s also easy to clean. It holds 15 used capsules, so you don’t have to bother with those every single use. Descaling is, as with all machines, the hardest part of the cleaning process, but the descaling pipe helps to simplify it. Nespresso does insist that you need their solution for descaling though, as vinegar will apparently harm the machine’s internal workings.

Best quiet and powerful espresso machine under $1000: Gaggia Classic Pro

  • Note: 1)Too coarse a grind, too little coffee, or insufficiently tamping the grounds before brewing can all lead to inadequate pressure for a proper brew. 2)It is important to note that the amount of espresso extracted will vary depending on the grind size and amount and reprogramming may be needed when the size and amount are adjusted
  • Rugged Brushed Stainless Steel housing
  • Commercial three-way solenoid valve. Capacity water tank - 2,1 liter
  • Commercial-style 58mm chrome-plated brass portability and brew group
  • Commercial steam wand. Rotating steam want movement type
  • Easy-to-use rocker switch controls

I’m not a huge fan of how this machine looks, but looks certainly aren’t everything. Gaggia has designed their semi-automatic espresso machine to be a rugged powerhouse, right down to its stainless-steel frame. 

The 3-way solenoid valve is something you’ll typically only see in commercial-grade machines, and it really simplifies the cleaning process. The rotating steam wand is of similarly high caliber,  and it can even make microfoam for latte art. The portafilter comes with single and double shot baskets as well as a pressurized basket designed for pre-ground or ESE pods. 

The sound-dampening on this machine is particularly noteworthy. It’s largely due to the improved design of the pump mounts, which make this machine impressively quiet during the brewing process. You can pair it with one of the best quiet coffee grinders to bring espresso into your morning routine without waking the family.

Honorable mention: Mr. Coffee Cafe Barista Espresso and Cappuccino Maker

  • Note: 1)Too coarse a grind, too little coffee, or insufficiently tamping the grounds before brewing can all lead to inadequate pressure for a proper brew.
  • 2)It is important to note that the amount of espresso extracted will vary depending on the grind size and amount and reprogramming may be needed when the size and amount are adjusted.
  • Please refer to user guide or user manual or user guide (provided below in PDF) before first use
  • Semi-automatic 3-in-1 espresso, cappuccino and latte maker
  • 15-bar pump system brews rich-tasting espresso coffee
  • Trouble-free, automatic milk frother takes the guesswork out of frothing milk
  • One-touch control panel for drink selections
  • Easy-fill, removable water and milk reservoirs
  • Cord length: 26 Inches; 1040 Watts

Mr. Coffee’s 3-in-1 espresso machine is still a semi-automatic, but it simplifies the creation of lattes and cappuccinos along with espresso shots. It even handles the frothing of the milk automatically. Like many of the best espresso makers, this machine operates at 15 bars, the pressure recommended for quality espresso.

The machine has a removable water reservoir and a removable milk reservoir to make refilling and cleaning the machine easy. Combine that with the one-touch drink options, and it’s clear that Mr. Coffee’s goal with the Cafe Barista was to create a simplified process for producing high-quality coffee.

Short of going with a fully automatic espresso maker or a capsule espresso machine, this is the easiest way you’ll find a make an amazing espresso beverage.

Final Verdict

You can get a high-quality espresso maker for under $1000. I’ve included a few options for semi-automatic and super-automatic machines and even one option for a pod-based machine. All of the above machines make excellent espresso, and most have either built-in milk frothers or automatic options for lattes or cappuccinos.

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