Last Updated: 27/5/19

The Best ​​​Nespresso Machine

​Nespresso Essenza Mini
​​Best Value

Essenza Mini

​Nespresso Lattisima Plus
​More Drink Options​​​

Lattisima Plus

​Nespresso Pixie
​Style and Simplicity

Pixie by Breville

​Nespresso Essenza Mini

Essenza Mini
  • ​Compact Size
  • ​Fast Heating
  • ​Easy to Use

​Nespresso Lattissima Plus

Lattisima Plus
  • ​Steamed Milk Dispenser
  • ​"smart" coffee features
  • ​Maintains Optimal Temp

​Nespresso Pixie

Pixie by Breville
  • ​Holds up to 10 Capsules
  • ​Works WIth Large Cups
  • ​Adjustable Size Options

Nespresso is one of the major competitors on the home-espresso machine market. They are popular for their affordability, convenience, and surprisingly good coffee in an extensive variety of blends and flavors. Plus, unlike some of their competitors, their capsules are recyclable. It take a bit of effort, but they can be taken to a store or you can arrange for them to be collected. Clearly there’s a lot that separates Nespresso from its competitors, but is a Nespresso machine really worth it? And if so, which ones are worth the investment? Here, we’ve addressed some of the most common concerns with Nespresso machines and put forward our top recommendations.

​Nespresso Machine Reviews

​Before we get into the individual reviews, we have to address a common debate. On one hand, Nespresso and other single serve machines have given consumers access to ​quick, affordable coffee from the comfort of their homes. On the other hand, coffee aficionados ​seem to take the stance that that these machines produce ​noticably lower quality espresso. It really comes down to personal taste, and how much you’re willing to spend to get that top notch ​beverage.

There are a lot of factors involved in making “perfect” espresso. These include the quality of beans, roasting procedures, time between roasting and brewing, fineness of the grounds, water temperature, and water pressure. An ideal espresso is made with a puck of fine ground coffee, water temperatures of 190-196 degrees, water pressure of about 9 bars, and a brew time of about 20-30 seconds.

Most of these factors simply can’t be met with a Nespresso machine. And while they advertise 19 bars of pressure, this is really just marketing the idea that “more is better,” which isn’t true in the case of espresso. ​That being said, producing a high caliber espresso requires a high caliber, professional grade machine. Not only can these cost thousands of dollars, but there is a lot of skill required to use one of these machines properly. If you don't have thousands of dollars around and you're not a professional barrista, perhaps it's unrealistic to compare the products in a high end coffee shop to something you can whip up in your home.

​Nespresso offers machines at a ​tiny fraction of the cost that require no special skills to use. ​They're easy and convenient. It's also important to consider what you actually want. Your weekly macciato certainly wouldn't be considered 'true coffee' by ​the same serious enthusiasts who are knocking nespresso, but that doesn't mean you can't enjoy it. ​Nespresso machines brew quite flavorful beverages with many unique choices available. At the end of the day, the question of “espresso vs Nespresso” comes down to taste, convenience and cost. Nespresso won’t replace your favorite espresso bar, but it will give you access to good coffee, any time, for a much lower cost. And unlike your typical drip coffee machine, you have access to a wide variety of different beverages.

​If you're after convenience and selection, these machines are for you. If you want to experience a traditional beverage prepared in traditional manners, then ​you might want to take a look at our review of the best espresso machines on the market.

​With that out of the way, we've gone through and selected our six favorite nespresso machines. First, we'll go through and do an in-depth review of each. After, we'll help you decide which one best suits your needs.

#1

​​Essenza Mini
Best Value

Essenza Mini by DeLonghi
 Why We Love It

It’s compact, energy efficient, and easy to use.

Who Should Buy This

Those who want a small machine that can make quick, easy espresso drinks.

With the Nespresso Essenza Mini, you’re getting great bang for your buck. It’s super affordable and very user friendly. The machine is also small, so it takes up a lot less space on your countertop. It has an easy design where you load in the capsule, pull a lever, and voila: fresh espresso in less than a minute. It also has a hot water option, so you can make a cup of tea or alternative hot beverage in an equally fast amount of time.

The Essenza is also energy efficient, and will automatically turn off after 9 minutes of inactivity (you can adjust this to 30 minutes if you like). As an ultra compact, ultra simple machine, you can expect some limitations. It only brews espresso and hot water, so there is less versatility compared to other models. The water tank is also smaller of course, so you’ll have to reload more frequently. It doesn’t have a descaling alert, but as long as you descale the machine every month or so, you should be fine. Overall, the Essenza Mini is an awesome compact espresso machine for at a very competitive price.

Pros:

  • Compact size
  • Hot water option
  • fast heating (less than 1 minute)
  • Espresso and Lungo options
  • Energy efficient
  • Easy to use

Cons:

  • Espresso and hot water only, not much versatility
  • Small water tank capacity
  • No descaling alert

#​2

​Nespresso Lattissima Plus
Best for Drink Options

Latissima Plus Loading Pods
 Why We Love It

It offers tons of drink options.

Who Should Buy This

Those who want the convenience of a Nespresso without sacrificing diversity.

The Nespresso Lattissima Plus really stands out for its steamed milk dispenser. It’s not the same as a frother, which will heat and foam milk. Rather, there is a separate milk tank which it uses to make latte and cappuccino style drinks.  Its Smart Coffee feature allows you to choose from 2 different espresso beverages and two different milk and espresso beverages. One downside is that the machine does not offer a milk-only option (some users note that you can get milk only by turning off the machine before the espresso is dispensed, but we haven’t put this to the test).

The Lattissima Plus will also maintain an optimal heat temperature for a period of time so that your next beverages will come out hot in an instant. This machine is a little higher maintenance than most, largely because of the milk tank. It is easily removable for storage in the fridge, but recommended you clean it out quite regularly. The Lattissima is *almost* more complicated than it needs to be, and in our opinion it is a bit pricey for a pod style machine. However, it does manage to strike the perfect balance between convenience and variety.

Pros:

  • Steamed milk dispenser
  • Smart Coffee feature
  • Maintains optimal temperature

Cons:

  • Cannot brew steamed milk only.
  • A bit higher maintenance than other Nespresso machines

#​3

​Nespresso Pixie
Best combination of Appearance and Simplicity

The Best Nespresso Machine 1
 Why We Love It

It’s simple, sleek and takes up hardly any space.

Who Should Buy This

Those who want a machine that’s easy to use and easy on the eyes.

When the Nespresso Pixie was designed, there was clearly an emphasis on the aesthetics. It’s a truly sophisticated looking machine, with its rounded, compact shape and its chrome/black color scheme. It takes up hardly any space and is dead easy to use. Don’t be fooled by its small size; the Pixie is also quite functional despite its limiting size. It holds up to 10 used coffee capsules, customizable serving sizes, and a folding drip tray to accommodate larger cups or travel mugs.​

It will also alert you when the water tank is running low. The Pixie is a bit noisy when warming and brewing, and is of course only compatible with Nespresso capsules (OriginalLine). However they throw in 14 variety capsules with every purchase. Overall, the Pixie is top of its came when it comes to simplicity and appearance.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Customizable size options
  • Holds up to 10 used capsules
  • Folding tray to accommodate larger cup sizes

Cons:

  • Noisy
  • Nespresso OriginalLine capsules only

#​4

​Nespresso Vertuo
Strikes a Balance between Features and Price

Vertuo on Counter
 Why We Love It

It makes larger, richer drinks and the milk frother is a great accessory.

Who Should Buy This

Those who want more hands on, less mess, and larger drink sizes.

The Vertuo is part of Nespresso’s new line of products and capsules, using a different technology to extract the espresso. The capsules are rounder and use centrifuge rather than bar pressure to extract the coffee. The added benefit of this technology is that the spinning capsule releases more fluid, so used capsules are dry rather than dripping. The Vertuo also stands out in that it makes both espresso and coffee drinks. Many pod based machines are known for their espresso sized beverages, which are much less volume than a typical mug of joe.

The Vertuo will brew single espresso, coffee, and even comes with a separate milk frother. The frother is one of it’s best features, and is easier to use and clean than traditional frothers. The capsules for coffee are larger than those for espresso, and thus more expensive, but still save you money in the long run. VertuoLine machines are also not compatible with Nespresso’s OriginalLine capsules, so that’s important to know you’re making the upgrade. For all its features, the Vertuo is an excellent price.

Pros:

  • Larger, richer drink
  • Centrifuge system means less mess
  • Makes both coffee and espresso
  • Separate milk frother

Cons:

  • Larger coffee pods are a bit more expensive
  • Less compact
  • Vertuoline capsule compatible only

#​5

​Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo
Runner Up

Evoluo
 Why We Love It

It’s easy to use and brews both coffee and espresso.

Who Should Buy This

Those who love single serve espresso but don’t want to sacrifice the traditional cup of joe.

I know I’m not alone in feeling that no matter how sophisticated single-serve espresso machines get, sometimes I really just want a mug of true coffee. Nespresso has clearly taken note, as they are starting to produce machines that will brew both espresso and coffee. The Vertuo Evoluo is one such machine. It’s a fairly large machine, but really easy to use and just as easy to clean.

The coffee and espresso option gets the thumbs up, but we’re not sure it fully justifies the price without a bit more razzle dazzle. It also doesn’t offer quite as many flavors as OriginalLine models, so be aware if you’re a flavor variety fiend. That being said, we do like the direction of Nespresso’s VertuoLine, and the Vertuo Evoluo is an overall easy and functional addition.

Pros:

  • Both coffee and espresso
  • Very easy to use
  • Easy to clean

Cons:

  • Less variety in pod flavours
  • A bit bulky
  • Vertuoline compatible only

#​6

​Nespresso VarietyPack
Best Capsules for New Owners

Varietypack
 Why We Love It

It’s a variety of flavors at a lower cost.

Who Should Buy This

Anyone who owns a Nespresso, and especially new owners.

If you own a Nespresso, there’s no doubt you’re buying their capsules. It remains a point of contention that Nespresso machines are only compatible with their own capsules, leaving you at the mercy of their quality, flavor options, and prices.

The upside is that Nespresso capsules are actually quite good, especially compared to their competitors. They also offer a massive variety of blends, most of which are still well under $1.00 per capsule. The Nespresso VarietyPack is the perfect place to start for new owners, and a great variety option for seasoned users. The pack comes with 5 different kinds, each with their own strength and flavor.

Pros:

  • Cheaper per capsule
  • Good variety
  • Good flavour

Cons:

  • Tricky to recycle
  • Pricier than bulk coffee beans or grind

Which Nespresso is Right for Me?

Having considered our list, how do you now decide which Nespresso best suits your needs? The most important factors are your personal budget and how you intend to use the machine. There is no point forking over extra cash for features you won’t use, but you also don’t want to commit to one only to discover it doesn’t meet your needs. Even the simplest features, like a hot water dispense option, could end up making a huge difference for you. So take a browse at our needs-based breakdown of our selection of the best Nespresso machines.

Nespresso Vertuo: If you want lots of features without breaking the bank

If you’re a variety lover, the Nespresso Vertuo is definitely the best choice here. It gives you the broadest drink options, and the separate milk frother is actually an amazing accessory on its own. It does use their new VertuoLine capsules only, which are slightly more expensive than the original line, but are also cleaner and offer coffee as well as espresso options. This machine is a one of the more pricey on our list, but it’s at a very competitive price for what you get.

Nespresso Pixie: If you want style, simplicity and a compact size

The Nespresso Pixie is a simple, sophisticated espresso machine. You’ll love it for it’s compact size, sleek appearance, and seamless ease of use. If you want something as elegant and straightforward as a rich shot of espresso, the Pixie is the Nespresso for you.

Nespresso Lattissima Plus: If you want the most beverage options in a stand-alone unit

Proponents of Nespresso are often seeking a one-stop-shop for all their coffee needs. Even if it means having a larger machine, a lot of people like the idea of having any morning drink just a button-push away. The Lattissma Plus is a great option because it offers both espresso and espresso/milk beverages, both without any extra effort on your part. Refrigerating and cleaning the milk tank requires a little TLC, but the Lattissma Plus is the best option for most variety in one unit.

Nespresso Essenza Mini: If you want the best bang for your buck

Many people are primarily concerned with getting the most out of their dollar, and this is where the Essenza Mini comes in. It has a bit of everything; it’s a compact machine with some extra features (espresso, lungo and hot water options), while remaining a simple and affordable espresso machine that’s easy to use. 

Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo: If you like the VertuoLine features, but want a simpler machine

The big change with Nespresso’s new VertuoLine is their capsule system. If you’re a fan of the trademark Centrifusion technology but are still just looking for a straightforward espresso machine, the Vertuo Evoluo is perfect. Plus, unlike many early Nespresso models, the Vertuo Evoluo brews coffee as well as espresso. We find this model a bit pricey for what it is, but if you can stretch your dollar a bit then it’s an excellent option that combines simplicity and versatility with the new VertuoLine technology.

Why Didn’t You Guys Review The High End Nespresso Machines?

You’ll probably notice that only one of Nespresso’s high-end machines, the Lattissima Plus, made our list.  You might be thinking: the high end machines must be really good, so why didn’t you review them? The real problem is the cost to quality ratio of high end Nespressos. One of the best features of Nespresso products is their affordability. They’re great in that they give you at-home espresso at a fraction of the cost of buying a high end espresso machine or going to the coffee shop every day. As we discussed, Nespresso was never designed to replace the quality of a high end espresso machine. Rather, they were meant to give consumers an easy, affordable option. The problem with high end Nespresso machines is that they can be up to three times as much as as a basic Nespresso without any significant improvement in quality. Yes, they will offer more features, but at those prices there are far better options out there. So if you’ve got a slightly higher budget, check out our guide to the best espresso machines.

Is a Nespresso Machine Just as Good as Any Other Budget Espresso Machine?

Sometimes, but not always. It really depends on how you rank a budget espresso machine. A key selling point of Nespresso is how easy they are to use. In this category, they are definitely hard to beat. However, they don’t always produce the best tasting coffee. If you want affordability but are also willing to put in a little extra effort for higher quality (like grinding your own beans or operating a manual coffee maker), take a look at our article on the best espresso machines under $200.

What’s The Difference Between a Nespresso Machine and Keurig?

Nespresso and Keurig are probably the largest brands when it comes to single-serve espresso machines. Nespresso tends to be more popular in Europe, whereas Keurig has a larger North American presence. So what’s the real difference between them?

The biggest difference between the two is their capsules, or pods. Keurig pairs with heaps of different brands (including Starbucks, MCafe, Van Houtte, Celestial and many more) to offer customers a massive variety of single-serve beverage options not limited to coffee and espresso. However, their pods usually contain less grounds overall and have criticised for not being recyclable or compostable. Keurig generally designs and manufactures all their machines.

Nespresso pods, while they do come offer a huge variety, are exclusively Nespresso brand. Their original line works in the same way as Keurig pods, with the machines pushing pressurized hot water through the pods to produce a beverage. However, their new VertuoLine pods are different. They use centrifugal motion (this specific technology is branded “centrifusion”) to brew the contents of the pods.

It is meant to blend/infuse the coffee more efficiently. The pods also have a barcode that the machine reads so that it knows exactly how best to brew each pod. The latter is especially useful for coffee vs espresso brew. Nespresso pods also tend to be more expensive than Keurig pods, but this is definitely a case of getting what you pay for. Nespresso often partners with brands like DeLonghi and Breville to design and manufacture their machines.

Keurig

  • More options/variety of pods available
  • More cost-friendly
  • Lower quality
  • Made with non recyclable plastic

Nespresso

  • Nespresso brand coffee only
  • A bit more expensive
  • Higher quality and better taste
  • Made with recyclable aluminium
The Best Nespresso Machine
The Best Nespresso Machine 2

Last Updated: 27/5/19 The Best ​​​Nespresso Machine ​Nespresso Essenza Mini​​​Best Value ​Nespresso Lattisima Plus​​More Drink Options​​​ ​Nespresso Pixie​

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