5 Best Budget Espresso Machine

We have tested many affordable espresso machines, and our research led us to prove that the De’Longhi EC155 is the best budget espresso machine in the market.

You are probably looking for the perfect gift for your family, your boss, or even yourself for the upcoming holidays! We have searched far and wide to find you the most affordable espresso machines to help narrow down your search.

Espresso machine on a counter top with coffee grounds

Our top pick was considered as the best budget espresso machine because it met all of our standards. De’Longhi is known to produce a wide variety of quality espresso makers. But, the EC155 is a standout for us because it is not only affordable but also performed the best among the ones we tested, so you get more than your money’s worth.

The way we ranked our choices were according to affordability, value, user experience, and variety. The one that got all four emerged as the best budget espresso machine. But of course, our other choices weren’t lacking, so if you want to explore more options, keep on reading!

What’s In This Article

Our Top 5 Best Budget Espresso Machines
Honorable Mentions
Other Things You Need To Consider When Buying An Espresso Machine
  • Price
  • Ease of Cleaning
  • Durability
  • Size
  • Drink Preferences

different types of espresso makers

Our Top 5 Best Budget Espresso Machines

making coffee

Below, you will find 5 of the best espresso machines when you’re on a budget, complete with all the details you need to know, including the pros and cons of each model to help you find the perfect home, espresso maker.

De’Longhi EC155 – Best Budget Espresso Machine Overall

Out of all the espresso makers De’Longhi has released, the EC155 remains on the list of the best cheap espresso machines out there that brew authentic barista-quality beverages.

The EC155 is an espresso and cappuccino maker that uses a 15-bar pump to produce great and balanced espresso shots. The machine is made of plastic except for the essential parts like the drip tray, steam wand, and boiler; they are all stainless steel.

De'Longhi EC155 on a counter top with ground coffee beans

It has a simple interface that allows you to control the steam, water supply, and power through the dial located at the front. Its features also include two separate thermostats inside the machine – one for water and one for steam – that keeps a stable temperature for your coffee.

The EC155 also includes a built-in, adjustable steam wand for frothing milk. Another inclusion is a plastic tamper. However, we suggest that you buy a quality stainless tamper separately to make the most out of this inexpensive espresso machine.

Specifications:

Brand: De’Longhi

Material: Plastic

Capacity: 1 Liter

Voltage: 120 volts

Product Dimensions: 12.2 x 19.3 x 15 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • Super reliable.
  • Removable water tank.
  • Smooth selector dial for brewing and steam functions.
  • 3-in-1 filter holder for single espresso shot, double espresso shots, or easy-serve espresso pods.

Cons:

  • Has vibrations while brewing.
  • Minimized space for coffee cups.

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SOWTECH 3.5 Bar, 8 Cup Espresso Machine With Steamer – Best Budget Espresso Machine for Price

This is one of the cheapest espresso machines that we think are worth buying. With a 3.5 bar steam pressure, it is more than good enough to make you a quality espresso.

One of the things we love about this espresso machine is its quick brewing feature which makes brewing espresso fast and straightforward with its single switch knob and indicator light for easy operation. Perfect if you are always on the go!

SOWTECH 3.5 bar, 8 cup Espresso and Cappuccino Maker With Steamer

The design is also very compact, making it the best choice for a home coffee maker. It also includes a steam wand to help you make the best homemade cappuccino with thick foam and perfect taste. An easy-pour glass cup that serves the exact amount is included in the package as well.

The best thing about this particular machine is that it doesn’t overheat and maintains a stable temperature without cooling down too quickly. And cleaning the machine is so easy, it will never be a problem.

Specifications:

Brand: SOWTECH

Material: Stainless Steel

Capacity: 0.5 Liters

Wattage: 1100 watts

Product Dimensions: 7.99 x 7.09. x 12.68 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • Quick brewing feature.
  • No complicated switches.
  • Easy to clean

Cons:

  • No auto shut-off
  • Not suitable for heavy operations

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Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Maker (Café Barista) – Best Budget Espresso Machine For Value

This semi-automatic espresso machine is very convenient, especially if you are not an experienced barista. It made its spot on our top 5 because of its quality build, customized options, and of course, affordability.

Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Maker (Café Barista)

The machine has a very sleek design, with a size so compact, it can fit small kitchens. It has a 15 bar pump system to brew rich-tasting coffee and a control panel with three buttons to perform intuitive operations, so just with one push of a button, and you have an espresso, latte, or cappuccino in no time.

Our favorite feature from this coffee maker is its milk tank with a built-in frothing wand. The features also include two filter baskets, so you have a choice to get a single or double shot and a pair of drip trays below the brew head to give you an option to fill a small or large cup.

All of its parts are removable, so you’ll never have a hard time cleaning the machine.

Specifications:

Brand: Mr. Coffee

Material: Stainless Steel

Capacity: 0.5 Liters

Wattage: 1040 watts

Voltage: 110 volts

Product Dimensions: 11.22 x 8.86. 12.6 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • One-touch control panel for different drink selection
  • User Friendly
  • Impressive build quality

Cons:

  • It takes time to clean

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Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Machine – Best Budget Espresso Machine For User Experience

Nespresso Essenza Mini Original Espresso Machine

If you want to make coffee like how baristas do it, then the Nespresso Essenza Mini is the espresso maker for you!

The mini espresso machine features a 19-bar pressure pump that effectively releases the aroma from your coffee beans. It also allows users to process by hand for more customized coffee options. Still, if you’re not someone who takes time to make coffee, we suggest you get an automatic or semi-automatic espresso machine.

The Essenza Mini allows you to choose the type of coffee grind and when to stop the coffee extraction. This espresso maker stands out because it accepts both ground coffee and espresso pods for a wider variety.

Specifications:

Brand: De’Longhi

Material: Stainless Steel

Capacity: 1.25 Liters

Wattage: 1050 watts

Voltage: 120 volts

Product Dimensions: 4.7 x 12.6 x 9 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • Visible Water Tank
  • Eco-Friendly
  • Can also make iced coffee drinks

Cons:

  • May have water leakage

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De’Longhi ECP3420 Bar Pump Espresso and Cappuccino MachineBest Budget Espresso Machine for Variety

The ECP3420 is another compact home espresso machine for those with tiny kitchens out there. But despite its size, it features a 15 bar pressure that is adjustable according to your taste.

This model is the most versatile among those De’Longhi has previously released as it can prepare a range of coffee drinks such as espressos, lattes, and cappuccinos. Because of its 3-in-1 holder, you can choose the number of espresso shots you want at a single time.

De'Longhi ECP3420
If you have guests over and need to serve a lot of coffee, this machine features a rapid cappuccino system that will allow you to brew multiple servings right away.

It is also equipped with double-wall filters to ensure that you are brewing high-quality crema all the time, a height-adjustable drip tray that can accommodate a wide range of cup sizes, and a stainless steel boiler system.

One of the fantastic things about the ECP3420 is its self-priming setting that enables a faster startup time so you can instantly brew your coffee grounds, even when you’re in a hurry!

Specifications:

Brand: De’Longhi

Material: Plastic

Capacity: 4.5 cups

Wattage: 1100 watts

Voltage: 120 volts

Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 7.25 x 11.9 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • Sleek and stylish design.
  • Offers personalized brewing tailored to your preference.
  • Smooth selector dial for brewing and steam functions.
  • Continuous coffee serving.

Cons:

  • Startup time may increase in the long run.
  • It does not allow you to select the volume of brew.

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Honorable Mentions

different espresso makers on a counter top with a milk frother

There are so many other choices for an affordable espresso machine. Unfortunately, we can only pick the Top 5, so here are some honorable mentions that you might like:

Hamilton Beach Espresso Machine With Steamer

Hamilton Beach Espresso Maker With Steamer
This didn’t make the cut on our top 5 cheap espresso machines but it still deserves an honorable mention for is the perfect espresso maker if you are one of those people who love a rich, strong, and authentic espresso taste.

This high-performance espresso machine features a powerful 15-bar Italian steam pump that delivers the perfect pressure for excellent extraction and rich crema. It also comes with two brew head sprouts that allow you to brew 2 cups of espresso simultaneously and a swiveling steaming wand to help you steam and froth milk.

Despite its impressive thus intimidating features, this coffee maker is easy to set up and use thanks to its patented Slide and Lock Technology. It will not only impress you with its promising performance but also because of its affordability.

Specifications:

Brand: Hamilton Beach

Material: Stainless Steel

Capacity: 2 cups

Voltage: 110 volts

Product Dimensions: 13 x 8.2 x 12.31 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • Produces a wide range of rich-tasting coffee.
  • Adjustable steam control.
  • Smooth selector dial for brewing and steam functions.
  • Built-in Cup Warmer
  • Detachable Drip Tray that can fit mugs up to 7.0″ tall
  • Removable parts for easy clean-up

Cons:

  • There may be leaking issues.
  • It takes quite some time to recover.

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STARESSO Portable Espresso Machine

This one is not just a small and compact espresso machine but is a portable espresso maker!

The STARESSO Portable Espresso Machine stands out because of its unique design that looks and feels like a travel mug. It also includes a measuring cup, cleaning brush, spare O-ring, and espresso shot glasses.

This cheap espresso maker can make you one serving of espresso because it can hold 80ml of water to its main chamber. It has a stainless steel piston on top of the machine to push down and turn clockwise to lock in place. Below the water chamber, you will find a basket for coffee grounds.

STARESSO Portable Espresso Maker

Our favorite feature of this portable espresso maker is that it doesn’t need batteries or electricity to work; however, you have to do things manually, which adds to its charm. Because of its stable pressure of 261 PSI, you can surprisingly make delicious espresso with nice thick crema through this machine.

The machine is pretty solid yet lightweight, so it is easy to lug along in your bags whenever you want to take it with you.

Specifications:

Brand: STARESSO

Material: Stainless Steel and Plastic

Capacity: 80 ml.

Product Dimensions: 3.35 x 3.35 x 8.86 inches

Price: Click button below

Pros:

  • Easy to hold and pack.
  • No complicated operations.
  • Very compact and portable.
  • It takes only a few seconds to clean.

Cons:

  • It makes a bit of noise while pumping.

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Other Things You Need To Consider When Buying An Espresso Machine

flair espresso maker on a counter top with coffee beans

Still haven’t found the best espresso machine to get from our list above? Here is a guide on the specifications we look for when choosing the best espresso machine when you’re on a budget.

Price

It is apparent that you are looking for a cheap espresso machine, but you have to make sure that they are worth the price. Look for the ones that offer valuable features at the least expense.

Ease of Cleaning

 Most budget espresso machines are tough to clean and, to be honest, and it’s not worth the bargain. You don’t want a dirty espresso machine on your countertops, and over time the dirt will affect its performance, so it’s better to make sure that you have an idea about what it takes to clean the machine before deciding on a purchase.

Durability

This aspect is essential if you are planning to invest in affordable espresso machines. One way to do this is by checking the type of material of the espresso maker to define its durability—buying something that always needs replacement defeats the purpose of going for a budget espresso maker.

Size

This aspect matters because you want to ensure that you have enough space in your kitchen for your brand new espresso machine. So if you don’t have enough spare room, consider going for small and compact ones.

Drink Preferences

If you are particular about the taste and texture of your coffee, make sure that you get a machine that offers options that allows you to brew a wide range of coffee choices to fulfill your coffee needs.

However, if you want good-quality espresso, go for the less complicated ones. This factor will also help you define the budget for your search.

History of Espresso Machines

Why is it called espresso? You wonder. Well it is because it is made “expressly” for a person. The first machine was invented and patented by Angelo Moriondo in Turin. The first name was “New steam machinery for the economic and instantaneous confection of coffee beverage, method ‘A. Moriondo”. So long right? Then later it was improved by Luigi Buzzer from Milano and was then called “Tipo Gigante”.

What type of Espresso Drinker are You?

Like other types of products, there are different types of users. What we aim to do here is to find one that is more appropriate to you.

Some espresso drinkers love espresso in general, all they want to do is to just pull a lever and voila! Espresso is ready and the morning grumpiness are solved.

While others are more picky, the output needs different settings to be achieved. Well there’s nothing wring with this but if you belong to this type. Choose the more complex machine. Maybe you will not find anything on the budget section but you can try the De’Longhi EC155. Check the features above.

If you belong to the first type, you can opt for the more simple ones like Nespresso and Stares. Check their features above as well.

Other high end espresso machines let you control the temperature of the water and have milk frother that is perfect.

If you choose machines like that, for sure you’ll have a rich crema on top.

Don’t set your expectations too high. The budget espresso machine is a great option for people who are looking for a cheaper alternative to a more expensive model. It is not as convenient as the more expensive models, but it still makes a good cup of coffee.

Cleaning Time

Using the espresso machines are all fun and lovely but cleaning? Not so much. So you’ll have to consider this when you buy the machine or you’ll regret your purchase.

The schedule of cleaning is also very important since rusting and degradation occur when the machine is idle and not very used so much. Regular cleaning is needed even if you just use it rarely or none at all. Set is weekly of bi-monthly. It is perfect to main the quality of your espresso every morning.

Cheap Espresso Machines, Is that really possible?

In all honesty, espresso making is an expensive hobby. You’ll definitely discover that it is no “budget” gadget and tools here. However, when you are just starting out, no one can stop you. We are like that few years ago too! Believe it or not.

Find at least 1 year Warranty Products

By choosing inexpensive machines and gadgets, the durability are often sacrificed so it is best to find products that have at least 1 year warranty so you can get a refund or replacement immediately as soon as it breaks.

The grinder is as important too!

If you cannot invest in expensive machines. Try to have a good grinder because it is fundamental in every cup of espresso. Usually the cheaper options of Espresso machines just used pressurized portafilter which tolerates output from back grinders. You can correct this by making sure the grinder you use is of good quality. We have lots of grinders featured in this website, browse on them after reading this article.

Go for Pods

If you don’t have good grinder or not so confident that yours can make the cut. It is best to go for pods instead. The pods are small pre-ground coffees packed in a filter that is kept fresh and ready to brew.

The pods are legit but they don’t stand a chance versus the ultra fine grinders output. So if you are trying to impress someone, don’t settle for pods go for the traditional method. But the pods or capsules can make you feel more truthful to your hobby compared to pre ground or cheap grinders.

We have a dedicated article about coffee pods here, we have ranked the best brands and applications to help you pick.

Final Verdict

If you are a student, an employee, an aspiring small coffee shop owner, or simply just someone who enjoys a good espresso shot, you have probably thought of investing in valuable espresso machines.De'Longhi EC155 on a counter top with ground coffee beans

But you’re kind of tight on budget, and espresso machines are a significant investment, you might think. Worry no more because the De’Longhi EC155 wins our search for the best budget espresso machines for it is the most valuable espresso maker at an affordable price that provides the best user experience, with a variety of drink options.

If you are looking for the perfect gift for a caffeine lover this Thanksgiving, this is your best option, and the most incredible thing about it is that you can purchase this budget espresso maker online.

Wanna learn more about espresso? We have more guides and tips to boost your coffee experience!