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French Press vs Pour Over

With so many high-tech automatic coffee makers on the market, it comes as something of a surprise that the two most popular ways of making coffee are manual ones: namely, the French press and pour over methods. It turns out that coffee drinkers just like to keep things simple. However, if you’re still on your quest for the perfect cup of coffee, you may be wondering how these two methods compare. All considered, when it comes to French press vs pour over, which produces a tastier cup of coffee?

For most, the contest of French press vs pour over may come down to the taste of the coffee each method produce. Coffee preferences range from strong and grainy to smooth and light, along with all types of tastes and sensations in between. Then, there are also those who insist that the most important thing by far that determines the taste of a cup of coffee is the quality of the beans used. That argument is certainly valid, but we still have important choices to make regarding method (French press vs pour over, or perhaps some other brewing style) and the equipment we purchase.

The French Press Method: An Overview

First, let’s take a look at the French press, which is sometimes called a cafetiere. The French press was created, despite its name, by an Italian designer/inventor in the 1920s, and today it the most popular manual method of making coffee in Europe and the US. A French press is usually distinguished by an elegant, simple but ingenious design.

The French press consists of a glass carafe with straight sides, fitted with a plunger. The plunger has a filter made of stainless steel, which looks like a mesh screen, attached to the bottom. The filter is sized to fit the inside of the carafe precisely. At the top of the plunger is a tight-fitting lid that helps preserve the flavor of the coffee while it is brewing or being served.

The carafe of a French press unit can also be made of stainless steel, or even plastic. It has a “beak” or spout at the top edge for pouring the brewed coffee. French presses come in many different sizes, and they can be used to make anywhere from two to eight cups of coffee at a time. Of course, if you have a larger size, you can still use it make just a cup or two by reducing the amount of coffee and water used.

Using a French press is simplicity itself. You begin by grinding your favorite coffee beans, preferably a large-grain variety. Then you put the freshly ground coffee at the bottom of the carafe and add boiling water over it. The coffee is left to steep for five to ten minutes, depending on how strong you like it. Once it has finished brewing, you push down the plunger so that the filter moves down to the bottom, containing the coffee grounds underneath.

The coffee is left on top, and it can be easily be poured through the spout. With a French press, you can control the taste of the coffee in a number of ways, starting with the texture of the ground coffee beans. The larger the size of the grind, the richer the taste. Varying the amount of time you let the coffee grounds steep can also give your drink a stronger or lighter flavor.

Do You Like It Strong? Maybe Even a Little Grainy?

For people who like their coffee strong and don’t mind a few grounds escaping into their drinks, the French press is a good choice. As it steeps, the coffee picks up the taste of oils from the coffee beans. This gives coffee from a French press a notably rich taste. Because you can control the length of time that the coffee is steeped, you also control the taste of the brew.

A strong cup of coffee is a good way to start the day. If you’re working late on a conference presentation or studying for an exam, for example, a carafe full of rich coffee is one of your best friends. However, the filter in a French press does sometimes let some grounds pass through, so your coffee may have a slightly grainy taste or texture in exchange for all that flavor.

Another small strike against this method in our French press vs pour over match-up is that cleaning this style of coffee maker can be a challenge. The grounds tend to collect in the tiny spaces on the filter, and it can be difficult to get rid of all of them with routine washing alone.

Pour-Over Coffee Makers: An Overview

Like the French press method, this is one of the simplest and quickest ways of making excellent-tasting coffee. Pour-over coffee makers can be made of plastic, glass or porcelain, and they are used along with a filter. You can use paper or reusable filters. Reusable filters are the more environmentally friendly choice.

Pour-over makers come in a variety of designs and shapes, but all consist primarily of a cone-shaped funnel with an opening at the bottom. The coffee beans should be ground medium to fine and placed in a filter which fits in the funnel. The pour-over unit is placed on the cup in which the coffee will be served. Hot water is poured into the filter and passes through the coffee grounds and into the cup.

It’s important to pour the water in a circular motion onto the coffee grounds so that they all get covered and moistened The design of your pour-over unit may enable you to control the speed at which the water passes through the coffee grounds. A larger opening at the bottom means that the water will pass through the coffee grounds faster, making a lighter cup of coffee. Smaller holes, or several instead of just one, will produce a richer taste since the water will move more slowly through the coffee grounds.

This style of coffee maker is also known as a coffee “dripper” because the coffee drips into the cup underneath. If you’re making more than one cup of coffee, you can place a glass carafe under the pour over instead of a mug. With pour overs, it’s important to make sure that the amount of water you pour into the filter can fit in the cup underneath. Beginners often make the mistake of adding too much water, causing a minor flood on the kitchen table or counter.

Do You Prefer Your Coffee Smooth and Light?

Whatever design and shape of pour-over coffee maker you use, you should be able to brew a smooth and light cup of coffee in a matter of minutes. Since all the grounds are contained in the filter, they don’t make their way into your drink. For many people, that’s an important consideration in making the choice of French press vs pour over.

Another plus with a pour-over unit is that clean up is easy compared to the French press. The grounds can just be thrown away (or saved to feed plants that love acidic soil), and most pour overs are dishwasher safe.

French Press vs Pour Over: All Considered, Which Is Better?

Before we begin any direct contrast of French press vs pour-over methods of making coffee, let’s consider the ways in which they are similar. French presses and pour-over units are both portable and lightweight, and both are typically quick and easy to set up. They can make a cup of coffee in just a few minutes. Whatever the size of the equipment, you can adjust the amounts of coffee beans and water to match the number of cups you want to make.

Both types of manual coffee makers are inexpensive and easily available. In brief, both are quick and convenient ways of making a delicious cup of coffee. Still, when it comes to taste, as well as the amount of time involved and the overall convenience associated with each, there are some important differences in French press vs pour over.

Taste

If you’re trying to decide between a French press vs pour over method, the taste of the coffee produced may well be the determining factor. With a French press, you’ll get a rich, strong, full-bodied cup of coffee. For those who like their coffee strong, this makes up for the slightly grainy experience that can occur when a few grounds find their way into the cup.

The taste of the coffee depends, to a great extent, on the amount of time the water is on contact with the ground coffee beans. With the pour-over method, the water just passes through the grounds, giving you a lighter flavor. This makes the pour over method a better choice for flavored coffees. Also, because the grounds are all contained in the filter, there’s no gritty taste or texture.

Time

The pour over is one of the quickest ways of getting a cup of coffee other than going to a drive-through. As soon as the water passes through the coffee grounds in the filter and into the cup underneath, your drink is ready. With a French press, you have to wait anywhere from five to ten minutes to let the coffee brew to the desired strength. Depending on exact circumstances, though, both methods are often quicker than using an automatic coffee maker.

Convenience

When it comes to comparing the convenience of French press vs pour over, there are certainly some differences. With a French press, you don’t need any extra equipment. All you need is freshly ground coffee and hot water. With pour overs, you need filters. That requires making sure you never run out of paper filters or that your reusable filter is always clean and handy.

Control

With a French press, you have outstanding control over the taste of your brew. You can change the taste by varying the size of the ground beans, the proportions of coffee to water, and the amount of time you let the coffee brew. This means that you can get exactly the kind of coffee you want each time you use a French press.

With pour-over units, you have less control over the taste and texture of the coffee. The design of a specific pour-over coffee maker can help you control the speed at which the water passes through your beans, but it’s not something you can control precisely each time you make a fresh cup.

Cleaning

Cleanup is super-easy with pour-over makers and somewhat more challenging for a French press. The French press comes with its own filter that must be cleaned of coffee grounds each time it’s used. There are plenty of little crevices in the filter where the grounds can hide, so it can be difficult to make sure you’ve gotten all of them. What makes it even more difficult is that you may have to get rid of the grounds before you start washing the filter to avoid a mess or other problems in your sink.

In order to clean a French press properly, you have to disassemble it and clean the filter thoroughly. For many, that extra step is just fine in exchange for the perfect cup of coffee, suited to their tastes.

Isn’t It All in the Beans?

And what of the purists who insist that what makes a great cup of coffee is not the method you use, or even how long you brew your coffee. What matters is the quality of the beans that you start with because that’s where the taste and flavor come from, they may argue. Clearly, though, the size and consistency of the grind also matter, which is why it’s a good idea to invest in a high-quality, reliable coffee grinder.

One thing is clear after all research is concluded: There is more than one way of making a great cup of coffee. In fact, you may prefer different tastes at different times of the day. So while a strong, rich brew from the French press may be the best way to start your day, a light, hazelnut flavored cup made with the pour-over method may be just right for an afternoon drink. Different people in the household may have different tastes, too, which is why you often see several types of coffee makers in family kitchens.

Conclusion

The two most popular methods of making coffee are the French press and pour-over methods. Both are quick and convenient as well as easy to set up and use once you’ve mastered the required brewing techniques. If you’re trying to choose between French press vs pour over for your next purchase, there are quite a few factors you should take into consideration. These include taste, speed, convenience, and ease of clean up.

On the other hand, true coffee lovers may just choose to bypass the French press vs pour over debate altogether and opt for both, since they’re both inexpensive and easy to find in stores and online. That way, you can always achieve different coffee tastes for different times of day and various occasions.

Best Coffee Maker With Grinder

best coffee maker with grinder on a coffee shop

Every coffee lover knows there are many parts to getting that perfect cup of coffee from your home coffee machine. A high-end coffee machine capable of extracting the most flavor from the coffee grounds is important, but the source of the beans is just as significant. Fresh-ground beans provide a much more robust taste than pre-ground or instant coffee, so having an at-home coffee grinder can make all the difference in getting your ideal cup of coffee. Many people struggle with limited counter space, and sacrificing prime counter space to both a coffee machine and a grinder can be impractical and no one wants to have to swap appliances in and out of their cupboard to brew a cup of coffee. A one-unit solution that combines the best coffee maker with grinder may be the solution to getting that stress-free perfect cup of coffee.

The good news is, the coffee machine industry has you covered with a wide range of coffee makers with built-in grinders. You don't get fresher than coffee that was ground just minutes earlier. The best coffee maker with grinder can help ease the brewing process and let you focus on brewing your best cup of coffee yet. Here at Start Your Day With Coffee, we've put together a list of ten of the best all-in-one machines on the market today. Read on to discover the best coffee maker with grinder for your morning coffee needs.

​Table of Comparison

Product

Image

Price

Breville Grind Control

Breville Grind Control

Cuisinart DGB 900BC

​Cuisinart DGB 900BC

Capresso Coffee Team

Capresso Coffee Team

Viante CAF-50 Grind and Brew Coffee Maker

Viante CAF-50 Grind and Brew Coffee Maker

Gourmia WIFI Coffee Maker

Gourmia WIFI Coffee Maker

Breville Barista Express

Breville Barista Express

DeLonghi Magnifica

DeLonghi Magnifica

Saeco Xelsis Super Automatic Espresso Machine

Saeco Xelsis Super Automatic Espresso Machine

Black & Decker Mill and Brew

Black & Decker Mill and Brew

​Grind & Brew Automatic Coffeemaker

Grind & Brew Automatic Coffeemaker

Best Coffee Maker with Grinder FAQ

grinder of a coffee maker with coffee beans

Image Via Pixabay

What Are the Perks of the Best Coffee Maker with Grinder Combinations?

Are the Best Coffee Maker with Grinder Combos Easy to Use?

Are The Best Coffee Maker With Grinder Combos Safe To Use?

Do the Best Coffee Maker with Grinder Combos Make Multiple Types of Coffee?

Where Can I Buy the Best Coffee Maker with Grinder Machines?

How We Reviewed

​We considered a variety of factors to determine the best coffee maker with grinder machines on the market. We focused on the quality of the grind, the quality of the brewed coffee, the variety of brewing options, ease of grinding, ease of brewing, ease of cleaning and maintenance, included safety features, overall durability, and warranty coverage.

Overall Price Range

The ten coffee maker/grinder combo machines on our list span a wide price range. The budget-busting outlier is the Saeco Xelsis machine.  On average, the addition of a built-in grinder increases the price of a standard coffee maker by approximately one third.

What We Reviewed  

  1. 1

    ​Breville Grind Control  

  2. 2

    ​Cuisinart DGB900BC

  3. 3

    ​Capresso CoffeeTeam

  4. 4

    ​Viante Grind and Brew Coffee Maker

  5. 5

    ​Gourmia WIFI Coffee Maker

  6. 6

    Breville Barista Express

  7. 7

    DeLonghi Magnifica

  8. 8

    Saeco Xelsis Super Automatic Espresso Machine

  9. 9

    Black & Decker Mill and Brew

  10. 10

    Grind & Brew Automatic Coffeemaker  

Best Coffee Maker with Grinder


Breville Grind Control

​Image Via Amazon

Features

The Breville Grind Control is produced by one of the most well-regarded names in the coffee industry. The built-in Burr grinder makes it easy to customize your ideal cup of coffee. There are six different grind settings ranging from coarse to super-fine, and eight brewing strength settings to make sure your morning coffee has just the right kick. The included high capacity, stainless-steel carafe allows you to brew up to twelve cups at a time. The machine can also accommodate travel mugs up to 7.5 inches. While it's designed for fresh-ground coffee, it can also handle pre-ground coffee if you're in a rush.

Cleaning and maintenance are simplified with a removable drip tray. The built-in filter is reusable and should be cleaned regularly to prevent clogs. This machine is best for plain coffee rather than flavored coffee due to the added oils.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Highly customizable in both brewed coffee strength and grind    

  •  Produced by a trusted brand 

  • High quality coffee    

  •  Easy to clean and maintain  

  • Large brewing capacity

Cons

  • ​Slower to brew than alternatives 

  • Doesn't handle flavored coffees well


​Cuisinart DGB 900BC

​Image Via Amazon

Features

If being able to plan ahead is important to you, this reasonably priced model might be the perfect fit. The Cuisinart DGB 900BC can be programmed up to twenty-four hours in advance and is easy to operate. Just fill up the reservoir and put in the beans to be ground, follow the instructions provided in the manual and then let the machine do the rest. Both brew strength and grind level can be customized and encourage trial-and-error experimentation. The thermal carafe has a twelve-cup capacity, more than enough for a big family.

The machine lacks a hot plate, but provides a thermal carafe which keeps your coffee warm independently. It's one of the fastest machines for both grinding and brewing, but cleaning can take a bit longer due to the depth of the chute. This machine is perfect for serious coffee drinkers looking to experiment with their morning brew.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Twenty-four-hour programmable timer    

  • ​Brew and grind strength can be customized    

  • Thermal carafe keeps coffee warm  

  • Easy to operate with a detailed instruction manual

  • More affordable than the majority of the listed machines  

Cons

  • Cleaning  requires added effort and the use of a brush

  • Lacks a hot plate        


Capresso Coffee Team

​Image Via Amazon

Features

Capresso is a top name in quality coffee makers, and its highly customizable controls can even make dark-roast coffee usually only found at coffee shops. It's programmable for up to twenty-four hours, making it easy to prepare coffee for the morning or when you get off work. Built with high-grade materials that are designed to last, it provides a lot of bang for the buck.

It has a powerful grinder a range of grind settings, from coarse to ultrafine. However, the grinder does make more noise than the average and it has a lower bean capacity than many models. The bonus of both a thermal carafe and built-in heating element ensures your coffee is still warm whenever your ready to serve it.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Brews coffee with a strong, full-bodied flavor

  • Durable and powerful machine  

  • Easy to operate with a detailed instruction manual

  • Thermal carafe keeps the coffee warm

  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • Grinding process takes time and is noisy    

  • Small grinding capacity


Viante CAF-50 Grind and Brew Coffee Maker

​Image Via Amazon

Features

This small four-cup coffee maker and grinder is ideal for a solo coffee fan or a small family, The Viante can deliver freshly ground and brewed coffee in only minutes and its small size is perfect for a modest countertop. It uses a powerful blade grinder to grind the beans, to quickly create the perfect grind for brewing.

Viante's Grind and Brew Coffee Maker is designed for freshness, and its four-cup capacity ensures the coffee never goes stale. You can customize your preferred strength and grind coarseness, even use it for whole-bean brewing. The built-in hot plate will keep the coffee in your carafe warm, making itone of the few bean-to-brew coffee makers on the market designed for a solo coffee drinker.


Gourmia WIFI Coffee Maker

​Image Via Amazon

Features

Most automatic coffee makers provide speed and convenience, but don't deliver the best-tasting coffee. Gourmia's WIFI-equipped coffee maker and grinder allows you to grind your beans directly into the pot below. The grinder is perched atop the coffee maker and can handle enough beans to brew a full standard pot of coffee.

The Gourmia is designed for a solo coffee drinker or a couple and is ideal for anyone who needs morning coffee in a hurry. It comes with programmable settings to ensure coffee is ready for you at exactly the right time, and a digital display makes it easy to keep track of your brew. It keeps your coffee warm without risk of burning for up to thirty minutes thanks to a warming element.  There is a pre-ground setting for use when you don't have time to grind your own. The Gourmia is a compact and low-cost option for those who value quality over quantity.


Breville Barista Express

​Image Via Amazon

Features

​One of the most powerful machines on the market, this cafe-quality espresso machine is semi-automated, meaning everything from the fineness of your grind to the dosage of your cup can be programmed with the easy-to-use dials. The concentration of the brew produced by this machine ranks among the best, making it ideal for anyone who prefers.

When it's time to brew your coffee, the water and tamp pressure are also under your control. The Breville is bulkier than most countertop coffee makers but is highly durable and delivers excellent long-term performance. It is one of the louder machines while grinding, but offers a professional barista experience for a fraction of the price of most high-end machines.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Brews highly concentrated espresso

  • Many customizable and programmable features

  • Includes a milk frother

  • Highly durable and powerful model

  • Easy to clean and maintain

Cons

  • Grinding can be loud

  • One of the more expensive machines

  • Takes up a lot of counter space


DeLonghi Magnifica

​Image Via Amazon

Features

Designed for espressos and Americanos, the DeLonghi Magnifica is a high-end machine that is built to last. The sleek silver machine takes up less space than the average espresso machine and comes with multiple settings that let you choose the concentration of your brew. The sheer variety of customizable settings makes it perfect for those who enjoy experimentation. The built-in cappuccino brewing system stands out by delivering a perfect milk froth and handling milk containers of any size.

This is one of the easiest machines to clean thanks to its automatic descaling indicator and easy-to-remove parts. Daily cleaning of any coffee machine is recommended, and few make it as easy as this machine. It's a high-end model with a price to match, but the convenience and user-friendly quality make it a perfect choice for someone looking for quality and variety from their espresso machine.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Delivers concentrated espresso with no bitterness

  • Durable, long-lasting model

  • Takes up less space than most high-end machines

  • Easy to clean and maintain

  • Sleek, professional design

Cons

  • Grinding can be noisy

  • High-end price tag


Saeco Xelsis Super Automatic Espresso Machine

​Image Via Amazon

Features

There's a reason Saeco has a reputation for making the "Rolls-Royce" of home coffee makers. The Xelsis model, their highest-end Espresso machine, delivers a professional-quality brew. The price matches, so this is a model for serious coffee drinkers. It comes with fifteen pre-programmed drink options, and the digital profiles allow you to set your favorite options and have them come up automatically.

Available only with Saeco models, the AquaClean filter means you don't have to descale for five thousand cups. Durable ceramic grinders offer multiple settings to ensure the perfect grind, and the HygieSteam function keeps the milk circuit clean thanks to a jet of steam after every use. The dual drink option brews two different drinks side by side for you and your partner. If you want a model that takes all the work and stress out of your morning coffee, this is the machine for you.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Delivers professional-quality coffee at home

  • Automated cleaning systems keep it fresh for months at a time

  • Fifteen pre-programmed drink settings

  • User profiles make it easy to start your favorite drink

  • Includes multiple user-friendly features

Cons

  • Extremely expensive professional-level machine


Black & Decker Mill and Brew

​Image Via Amazon

Features

An ideal beginner's coffee maker and grinder at a low price, it comes with a convenient pre-programming feature to ensure you have a fresh cup of coffee waiting for you when you wake up. It works up to twenty-four hours in advance and the machine can easily switch from grinding whole beans to using pre-ground coffee.

It is designed to let you adjust both your grind size and coffee strength, making it an ideal option whether you prefer dark coffee or light. The viewing window lets you keep track of the water level, preventing overflows, and the machine has a twelve-cup capacity. A built-in filtering system eliminates the need for paper filters, and it's designed to be easy to clean.  Care is required if using the hot plate feature, as there is no temperature sensing auto-shutoff which can cause coffee to burn if left standing too long.


Grind & Brew Automatic Coffeemaker

​Image Via Amazon

Features

Ideal for kitchen and office use, the Grind & Brew Automatic Coffeemaker is a simple model designed to brew a collective pot of coffee. Its brushed metal design and glass carafe are designed for safe pouring and are completely BPA free. Its twenty-four-hour programmable system lets you plan in advance, and it comes with an automatic shut-off and pause brew feature to let you grab a cup at any time.

Its grinder can be shut off to use pre-ground coffee, and the brew strength control lets you program your perfect cup of coffee. It's a simple, easy-to-use option ideal for large group settings or home use.

​Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Simple, easy-to-use machine

  • Brew pause feature ideal for those in a hurry

  • Auto shutoff prevents overheating

  • Programmable up to 24 hours in advance

Cons

  • Fewer features than the high-end models

  • Lacks a heating element

​The Verdict

coffee beans in a coffee grinder

Image Via Pixabay

All ten coffee machines with grinders on this list delivered impressive performance, providing a strong cup of coffee in only minutes with that added kick from fresh-ground beans. While we found spectacular performance from the high-end models, the price tag was so high that we would only recommend them to the biggest coffee aficionados. However, we found one model on the lower price end that delivered high-end performance, and it comes from one of the top names in the coffee maker industry. The Cuisinart DBG 900BC gets our pick for the best coffee maker with grinder on the market today.

Pour Over Coffee vs Drip

scattered beans from the laid coffee cup

Have you ever walked into a coffee shop, and, after ordering a cup of coffee you hear the barista rattle off a list of ways for your coffee to be made? And after standing there confused for a minute, with a speechless look on your face, you maybe then responded with something novice like “just a regular cup, please.” Sometimes it's hard to have our finger on the pulse of the best way to do things. But believe it or not, there are interesting and life-shifting techniques for brewing up the best cup of coffee. You just have to start with understand pour over coffee vs drip coffee.

Pour Over Coffee vs Drip?


What's the verdict on pour over coffee vs drip coffee?... It's a matter of quality over convenience. Drip coffee is the type of coffee everyone is most familiar with. Think Mr. Coffee, Hamilton Bay, or Cuisine Art machines that sit on the kitchen countertops of most homes. After pressing a button or two, you're given a steaming cup of morning delight. 

Pour over coffee, on the other hand, is less common and you are talking about a very custom experience. Water is boiled, and when it reaches the perfect temperature it is hand poured over ground up beans and finally slow strained into a glass vial. With pour over coffee, you get a richer result and an overall better experience.

When comparing pour over coffee vs drip coffee, there are a lot of details to consider. But for a vast majority of the time, pour over coffee winswhen it comes to taste and experience, though not when it comes to convenience and price!

What Is Drip Coffee All About?


Drip coffee is the automated process of getting a cup of coffee, for cheap, and often at home. The process relies on simple machinery which holds ground coffee beans in a paper filter and pours the desired amount of water over it. The water is heatedup in the machine, and then it precedes to flow out of a shower head over the ground coffee beans. It moves through a paper filter and lands in a heated pot.

People love to set a timer on these machines, so when they first wake up a nice cup of warmed up coffee is sitting there waiting for them to enjoy. People on their way to a day with a hectic schedule usually get a great deal of enjoyment out of drip coffee. It typically means less time spent on things outside of getting ready and taking care of what calls for their attention.

When considering pour over coffee vs drip, the drip method has its meaningful application; but as all matters of convenience go, ultimately there is a significant loss in the quality.

Why Is There A Loss In Quality?

cup of coffee surrounded with coffee beans

image source: Pexels

When using the drip method, there are many reasons as to why the cup of coffee falls short of being the best.

Temperature

The National Coffee Association states that the optimal temperature to steeping coffee is between 195 degrees and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. Drip machines simply won't reach that temperature, especially in a consistent fashion, as they pour water over the ground up coffee beans.

Inconsistent Steep

As most drip machines pour the hot water over the ground up coffee beans, the shower head only distributes to specific regions of the beans in the filter. This means that some of the ground coffee beans are soaked and steeped for more extended periods, while some areas (like the edges) of your ground coffee beans are hardly steeped at all. That situation puts a strain on some coffee grounds, causing them to soak, which spoils the flavors and aromas.

Cleanliness

Most drip machines are made up of many different parts. Cleaning the entire device can be a real hassle. The inability to clean the drip machine thoroughly after each use leads to bacteria and mold growth, which definitely spoils the delectable joys of a nice cup of coffee. They also pose a threat to your health!

You might be seeking convenience through the drip machine to save some time throughout the day. But instead you may end up sick for days. Nobody wants that.

Lack Of Control

All in all, the major downfall of the drip machine and its level of quality stems from its lack of control. The more personal a touch we can put on our cup of coffee, the higher the quality will be and the more likely we are to enjoy it.

With the drip machine, we only get control over which beans we use and how ground up they are. The machines say that we can enhance the intensity of the brew, but they are really just machines which only offer basic functionalities, capable of only so much, and basically just give us a feeling of control.

Because of each reason listed above, the drip machine seriously losses its credibility as the go-to technique for making a cup of coffee in our competition match up of pour over coffee vs drip.

What Exactly Is Pour Over Coffee?

hot coffee being poured to coffee cup

image source: Pexels

Pour over coffee is so similar to drip coffee that there is much confusion surrounding the two techniques. So how is it better? After all, in both processes, there are ground beans and hot water being poured over those ground beans through a filter.

With the pour over process, there is no machine involved. There is no automation of the process. There is you and/or a barista, the coffee grounds, a glass vial to catch the steeped coffee with, and a level of personal focus.

How the cup of coffee comes out is dependent on the person who is making it. There is so much customization that you can find unique character in almost every pour over cup made, even if they are from the same coffee bean!

Why Is Pour Over The Superior Technique?

person holding a cup of coffee

image source: Pexels

Control

With the pour over technique, you have remarkable control. You have control of the hot water, you have the pour, and you get to orchestrate their intimate interaction the whole way through.

If you want a lighter cup, you can pour less water in so it seeps right through the grounds and into the vial. If you want more bitter and flavorful coffee, you can pour more over the ground beans and allow the hot water to build up then soak over those beans for a prolonged steep. You get to utilize every bit of your ground bean for your final pot. You can pour your hot water over the sides, over the middle, and over the back. 

Affordability

Some coffee brands and businesses have taken the issue of inconsistent pouring into consideration, so they have build machines that can rival pour over coffee: but these machines are going to cost you a solid $200 and up.

A huge factor in why pour over coffee ranks better in the showdown of pour over coffee vs drip is because of its affordability.

All the equipment necessary for a pour over is going to cost you somewhere between twenty and thirty dollars, typically. Some styled glassware can be found for $60 or so; but for the most part, all you need is a nice glass vial and a filter, which are both relatively inexpensive.

Sustainability

This factor isn't often the make or break point, but it is certainly worth the consideration. When buying a pour over coffee set, you are looking at an eco-friendly product that can last five-plus years.

With machines, you will typically have to throw them out because of wear and tear after 2-3 years. And they almost always make these machines of a bunch of plastic, so they are just going to sit, crowding up landfills for decades. Pour over sets will last as long as you are careful with the glass. And glass breaks down a lot faster than plastic.

Temperature

Remember, the optimal temperature to steep a cup of coffee with is between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. When dealing with pour over coffee vs drip, the pour over option actually gives you the opportunity to soak the beans in optimal temperature water. Water boils at 212 degrees Fahrenheit, so as soon as it is boiling you know it is just about the optimal temperature. You take it right from the kettle and allow it to soak over all of your ground coffee beans, extracting the greatest caffeine levels, aromas, and flavor profile.

Conclusion


Our lives deserve quality experiences. The depth of the quality in a pour over coffee vs drip is one to potentially marvel over. These quality moments can slow us down, take our minds off of stresses, and furthermore inspire us to include higher levels of quality throughout our work and lives. Pour over coffee is more than just abundantly aromatic and flavorful when compared to drip coffee, but it is inspirational.

If convenience is the main factor, it makes sense to use a drip machine. Or if you have the means to spend extra, you can find a machine that makes a higher-quality cup.

Overall though, the next time you're considering buying a cup of coffee, or coffee making set for the home, steer clear of the drip coffee! We told you what we think about pour over coffee vs drip, but how do you feel? 

Coffee vs Energy Drinks

couple holding a cup of coffee in opposite direction

image source: Pexels

You've probably been wondering what the truth is about the health effects of coffee vs energy drinks. We've done some digging to find out what the truth is about the differences between the two popular sources of caffeine and which one is truly best for your body. You may be surprised at what we discovered–it's all detailed below!

Coffee vs Energy Drinks –Which Is Better For Your Health?

So, when it comes to coffee vs energy drinks, which is the healthier choice? Though they are both capable of providing significant energy boosts, coffee is a more natural choice that has been studied extensively and proven to pose no health risks when used in moderation. Energy drinks, on the other hand, are still in question.

Energy drinks often have a flavor that is sweet, much like candy, while black coffee has a more bitter taste, making it harder to stomach for many people. However, if you can learn to accept this natural source of caffeine over the sugar-induced spurs of energy that energy drinks provide, you'll find that it's much easier on your system. Coffee is the clear winner here.

5 Reasons Coffee Is Healthier


#1–Coffee Has 0 Calories


woman pouring hot coffee in a mug

image source: Pexels

Caffeine is great for its ability to give you an energy boost, raise your metabolism, and lift your mood–so much so that it can become routine and even addictive. If you have acquired a taste for black coffee, you'll be happy to know that black coffee contains zero calories. With black coffee, you get to experience all the energizing benefits coffee can provide you without all the unwanted calories. Energy drinks, on the other hand, usually contain calories that come mainly from their sugar content.

There are some zero-calorie energy drinks on the market. But although they have a low-calorie count, scientists say they are just as unhealthy and pose the same risks as energy drinks that do have calories.

#2–Coffee Is Natural


scattered coffee beans from a laid coffee cup

image source: Pexels

Coffee is a natural substance as compared to energy drinks, which are manmade and contain all sorts of preservatives, dyes, and other chemicals that provide very little–if any–nutrition for the body. Some believe that coffee cultivation dates back as far as A.D. 575. Its uses and benefits have been studied for a very long time, and its popularity in society is still withstanding today.

The continual threat of cancer these days has doctors recommending that we be wary of everything we put into our bodies. It's believed that consuming natural foods is one of the best ways to help preserve our bodies through our diets–and for this reason, coffee is more highly regarded than energy drinks in the health and fitness community.

#3–Energy Drinks Contain Lots Of Sugar


sitting tattooed person holding a can of energy drink

image source: Unsplash

A glaring difference between coffee vs energy drinks is the amount of sugar in each beverage. It is said that on average, the amount of sugar in your typical non-zero-calorie energy drink contains the equivalent of 13.5 teaspoons of sugar–this is outrageous! Too much sugar has harmful effects on the body, and the amount of sugar contained in energy drinks is the reason why they are notorious for their tendency to cause you to "crash."

All the sugar you get from energy drinks gives you instant energy that lasts for a short time and causes you to feel drained and tired once the energy runs out. Black coffee is sugarless, and can give help you sustain an event level of energy that does not cause you to "crash" once the caffeine runs out.

#4–Overdose Is More Likely With Energy Drinks


white monster energy drink

image source: Unsplash

Energy drinks have been somewhat controversial in recent years due to reported instances of energy drink overdose, especially among teenagers. Some victims who have reported heavy energy drink usage have suffered from heart attacks or even experienced kidney damage. Experts believe this is in part due to the way energy drinks are consumed as compared to more social drinks like coffee. While coffee is meant to be sipped on and savored, energy drinks are consumed more quickly, delivering caffeine into one's system at a rapid rate.

What is even more concerning is that some people tend to form addictive habits with energy drinks. Usage of the drinks may lead to physical dependence on stimulants and even binge drinking, increasing the risk of adverse side-effects from consuming too much caffeine.

#5–Coffee Has Healing Properties


hot cup of coffee with beans underneath

image source: Unsplash

Studies have shown that coffee can actually help prevent Type 2 Diabetes through its ability to help increase both insulin and glucose levels. And coffee's health benefits do not stop there. There are several diseases that evidence suggests coffee helps to prevent and treat. In the case of energy drinks, unfortunately, the same things cannot be said.

More Research Supports The Health Benefits Of Coffee


When it comes to coffee vs energy drinks, coffee has stood the test of time, has been proven safe, and is backed by a lot of research. Coffee has been drunk throughout history and undergone extensive studies; whereas energy drinks have only just become popular in recent years. Some historians believe coffee was cultivated as early as A.D. 575.

There have been studies conducted to determine the effects energy drinks have on the body, but they are nowhere near as comprehensive as the studies that have been done on coffee. Thus, when making a choice between coffee vs energy drinks, choosing an energy drink can sometimes feel like a health gamble.

Best 4 Cup Coffee Makers

Women is holding a coffee cup and in front of her is the best 4 cup coffee maker

If you enjoy starting your day with a good cup of coffee, it might be time to upgrade your home coffee maker and stop buying overpriced lattes each morning. Having a quality coffee maker to start your days can be a great investment. Not only are you giving yourself access to quality coffee without having to visit a coffee shop, but you can customize your morning brew to your exact specifications. A 4 cup coffee maker is an ideal option for anyone who doesn’t need a larger, professional-quality machine, and the best 4 cup coffee makers are ideal for a small-to-medium sized household.

With a four-cup machine, you’ll have enough coffee for the morning without waste. Choosing the best 4 cup coffee maker will require assessing your specific coffee-related needs, ranging from taste to the range of options operated to maintenance requirements. Here at Start Your Day With Coffee, we’ve selected and evaluated ten of the very best 4 cup coffee makers on the market today. Read on to find the best 4 cup coffee maker for your family’s morning coffee needs!

The Best 4 Cup Coffee Makers: FAQ

1. What Is a 4 Cup Coffee Maker, and What Does It Do?

2. Do Compact, Portable Coffee Makers Have a Lot of Features and Options?

3. Are the Best 4 Cup Coffee Makers Easy to Use?

4. Are the Best 4 Cup Coffee Makers Easy to Clean?

5. Where Can I Find the Best 4 Cup Coffee Makers?

How We Reviewed

Ninja 4 Cup Coffee Maker placed at the top of the table and beside it is a cup of coffee

Image via Amazon

The following entries on our list of the best 4 cup coffee makers were reviewed based on the following parameters: assembly required; ease of use, ease of maintenance and cleaning; the variety of settings offered; coffee taste and intensity; durability; price; and warranty.

Overall Price Range

Most coffee makers on this list are very moderately priced appliances. The high-end outlier we included here is the Brew Express 4-Cup Built-In Coffee System.

What We Reviewed

  • Mr. Coffee DRX5 Programmable Coffee Maker

  • Bonavita BV1500TS

  • Capresso 303.01 4-Cup Espresso and Cappuccino Machine

  • Zojirushi Ec-DAC50 Zutto

  • Mr. Coffee JWX9 5-Cup Coffee Maker

  • Ninja CE201

  • Mr. Coffee Simple Brew

  • Cuisinart DCC-450BK

  • Brew Express Be-104R-223A

  • Elite Cuisine EHC-2022 Maxi-Matic

Mr. Coffee DRX5 Programmable Coffee Maker

Features

The Mr. Coffee DRX5 is a compact coffee maker ideal for anyone living in a small apartment, for example. It’s designed to fit on a counter without taking up much space. Its glass carafe is large enough to brew four cups comfortably, and it uses standard paper coffee filters. Its 24-hour timer makes it easy to plan your next day’s brew time. We liked the highly visible off/on switch that helps ensure sure you never leave it on accidentally.

This is a simple model, but it has some useful features including a “pause brew” function that allows you to take a cup before it’s finished. You can also pre-infuse the brew using this feature. It’s a budget-friendly option and easy to clean and maintain. Some reviewers noted that the carafe lid could be stronger in its construction, but this is an ideal maker for routine and casual users.

Bonavita BV1500TS

Features

The Bonavita BV1500TS delivers high-level performance at a mid-level price and has more features than any other option in its price bracket. Popular with specialty coffee fans, it deploys a combination of pre-infusion and a special shower head that disperses the water effectively and concentrates flavor like few other options. An included thermal carafe keeps the coffee warm longer than heat plates alone.

This Bonavita maker is a highly durable and efficient model designed for daily use. It has been certified by the SCAA, one of the few coffee makers in its price bracket to meet that high standard. The carafe is spoutless, but it pours accurately with the lid attached. The model’s safety features help to prevent common brewing mistakes. Overall, this is clearly one of the best mid-range compact coffee makers on the market.

Capresso 303.01 4-Cup Espresso and Cappuccino Machine

Features

If you’re looking for something more than a standard coffee maker, Capresso’s mid-priced option allows you to make cafe-quality espresso and cappuccino at home. A super-compact model that easily fits on a kitchen counter, it comes with options to adjust your coffee’s strength, froth milk, and steam your cappuccino. This model speeds up the process of brewing flavored or concentrated coffee, although you should know that the frother can be tricky for new users at first.

This unit comes with two carafes: a dishwasher-safe glass carafe and a stainless steel carafe that keeps your coffee warmer longer. It only has a few parts, making it easy to disassemble, clean, and reassemble. Although we would like to see a timer option included, this is an excellent choice for someone whose tastes tilt away from “plain” coffee. The level of steam is adjustable, and thumb guards and a boiler cap are valuable safety features as well.

Zojirushi Ec-DAC50 Zutto

Features

Featuring a five-cup capacity not commonly found on the market, this coffee maker is ideal for a bit more coffee with each brew. It comes with a charcoal water filter that reduces any aftertaste from tap water and ensures a cleaner-tasting coffee drink. It’s highly rated for flavor, certainly, but this model also gets high marks for the materials used in construction. Its glass carafe with a cone-shaped filter guarantees water flows evenly through the grounds, penetrating them and increasing the intensity of your brew. The water filter lasts two years with daily use.

Its included reservoir helps to shrink the footprint of this machine, making it suitable for smaller quarters. It can easily fit on the side of a counter. It’s a no-frills coffee maker that doesn’t include a timer, but its automatic keep-warm function is useful for anyone who wants to keep a cup of coffee ready for right before they leave the house. While you’ll see a higher price tag than some roughly equivalent coffee makers, the clean-tasting coffee may be well worth it.

Mr. Coffee JWX9 5-Cup Coffee Maker

Features

If you want a slightly larger capacity and a mix of style and functionality, this Mr. Coffee five-cup model is one of the best low-cost options on the market. Available in either glass or stainless steel carafe models, it comes with multiple features to ensure an easy process. The delay timer lets you set your brew in advance so you can wake up to a hot pot of coffee., and auto-pause stops the cycle momentarily to let you get a cup before brewing is finished.

The water window lets you monitor brewing progress and helps to prevent overflows while the removable filter basket makes this one of the easiest appliances on our list to clean. It shuts off automatically after one hour, too, making it one of the safest models.

Ninja CE201

Features

This is a larger coffee maker that some on our list, but it has a small-batch option that allows you to brew your ideal size. This model is beloved by experienced coffee aficionados due to its unique “thermal flavor extraction” technology. This patented technique prevents bitterness and concentrates the natural coffee flavor. Overall, our team found this to be an intuitive coffee maker that is easy to learn, clean, and use.

The Ninja CE201 is admirable for its range of features and settings as well. These include its mid-brew pause button for those who can’t wait for their first cup, an auto-shut off that kicks in after two hours, and a 24-hour programmable timer. Its precision-temp warming plate can keep coffee warm for up to four hours, and the carafe circulates the liquid to evenly distribute flavor. Its 12-cup reservoir is easy to remove and clean, and the entire design is one of the sturdiest among the best 4 cup coffee makers on this list.

Mr. Coffee Simple Brew

Features

The Mr. Coffee brand is best known for its programmable 24-hour timer, a feature included in most models. The Simple Brew is designed to be suitable for any kitchen, fitting on the counter without taking up too much space. It has an easy-to-clean glass carafe and uses standard paper coffee filters. Its pause brew function is an ideal choice for anyone who doesn’t want to wait for the whole carafe to brew.

This Mr. Coffee appliance is a mid-priced model, but it receives high praise for the intense coffee flavor it delivers. The carafe is dishwasher-safe and the reservoir drains easily, which makes this one of the easiest machines to clean. Finally, it takes only about five minutes to brew a whole carafe, which is one of the best “turnaround times” on the market.

Cuisinart DCC-450BK

Features

A low-cost coffee maker with a four-cup capacity and a stainless steel carafe, this model from the trusted Cuisinart brand is one of the smallest on the market, fitting easily on a counter without taking up too much space. It includes a knuckle guard and a no-drip spout, helping to keep your hands safe when you’re handling it shortly after waking up. The pause-brew function helps to wake you up in the morning, letting you grab a cup before the carafe is finished brewing.

This Cuisinart maker comes with a 30-minute shutoff feature, which is a bit shorter than most models to ensure no overheating ever occurs. Although it lacks a timer feature, the stainless steel carafe keeps your coffee hotter than other options.

Brew Express Be-104R-223A

Features

This high-end model features built-in-the-wall construction. It’s designed to be attached to a water source in a manner similar to an ice maker, making it an ideal choice for kitchens with seriously limited space. This means you get the convenience of avoiding pouring water to brew a pot; instead, you just add your coffee grounds and the direct water hookup will do the rest. It includes a timer and clock for maximum customizability and advanced planning.

The built-in design means you’ll never spill any water, and the thermal carafe keeps your coffee warm with no hot plate. The adjustable cup selector lets you pick your size, between a single cup and a full carafe. It’s safe to remove the carafe during brewing thanks to the pause-n-brew sensor. This is the most expensive item on our list by a wide margin, and it requires professional installation, but it is an amazing high-end choice.

User Friendliness

Challenging to install, but easy to use and comes with multiple safety features.

Elite Cuisine EHC-2022 Maxi-Matic

Features

A solid choice that offers quality coffee on a budget, this maker’s slim design is easy to put on a counter without taking up much space. It takes about five minutes to brew a full carafe and gets high marks for its semi-transparent water reservoir that has an indicator level. This makes it easy to see when you need to refill the water or prevent overflow. It comes with a washable built-in filter but also works with standard paper filters.

We found this one of the simplest models to use and clean, due to a water tank that can be removed easily and a dishwasher-safe filter basket. Its hot plate keeps coffee warm for up to an hour after brewing, and the pause-and-serve function makes it easy to get a cup of coffee in a hurry. This Elite Cuisine unit lacks an auto shut-off, but the power indicator is lighted and easy to see.

The Verdict

All ten of the best 4 cup coffee makers on this list delivered quality performance and a quick, refreshing carafe of coffee in the morning, with nine of them having an easily affordable price point. Surprisingly, the one model that stood out due to its enhanced features and excellent barista-quality coffee wasn’t a 4-cup coffee maker after all. The Ninja CE201 delivered the best overall performance and can easily make small-batch coffee for your morning carafe. It earns our endorsement as the best 4 cup coffee maker on the market today.

Featured Image via Amazon