Top five best bean-to-cup coffee machines for 2020
Bean-to-cup coffee machines can be extremely expensive, and our tests have shown that not all of them live up to their high price tags. Make sure you invest in the best by choosing one of our top picks.
We've selected the top-rated bean-to-cup machines from our rigorous coffee machine tests, which include a blind coffee taste test by our tasting panel. Good bean-to-cup machines should be easy and quiet to use, and produce rich, smooth and tasty brews.
Choosing the wrong machine could mean you are left hundreds of pounds out of pocket and have to put up with watery coffee, so we reveals the bean-to-cup coffee machines to avoid.
Want to see all of our top-scoring coffee machines and compare types? Go to our roundup of the best coffee machines overall including pod and capsule coffee machines.
Our Best Buy bean-to-cup coffee machines
One of the highest scoring bean-to-cup models we’ve tested. Its unique manual design gives you a hands-on coffee-making experience so you can play at being an at-home barista. It’s easy to use, quiet and dispenses tasty freshly-ground espressos in less than 30 seconds. The steam wand produces excellent creamy foam for creating milky drinks like cappuccinos.
This high-end coffee maker is easy to use, brews excellent coffee and froths milk like a champion. It's got a quiet grinder too. You can make a coffee from the comfort of your sofa, thanks to the smartphone app it connects with, and it's got plenty of scope for personalising your brew, too.
This bean-to-cup machine brews up delicious espressos and cappuccinos, and has handy extras such as an integrated milk frother and customisable drink options. It's also quiet and pretty easy to use. It's cheaper than some similar-spec models, so it's a great option if you're after a good-value premium machine.
Get delicious, freshly ground coffee in less than a minute, with this compact and well-priced bean-to-cup coffee machine. It can produce drinks at a single touch and even remembers your preferred size. While you will have to froth your milk manually, the steam frothing wand will give your cappuccinos a fantastic foam finish.
Last updated: November 2019
Not found the coffee machine for you? See all our coffee machine reviews.
And here are two bean-to-cup coffee machines to avoid...
When a bean-to-cup machine works well, you end up with fresh and delicious espressos at the touch of a button. However, choose the wrong model and you could end up with a fiddly machine that produces weak and watery espressos. With prices ranging from £250 to more than £1500, make sure you check the models to avoid below before you buy.
Our Don't Buy bean-to-cup coffee machines
See the models that made it onto our Don't Buy list - coffee machines to avoid.
Bean-to-cup coffee machines: what to look for
Most bean-to-cup machines have a built-in steam pipe to froth milk so you can also make milky coffees, such as lattés or cappuccinos, as well as espresso. Many include digital displays and automatic settings to speed up the coffee-making process.
If you like the convenience of ground coffee every now and then, some bean-to-cup models allow you to use this in place of whole coffee beans.
Not sure what type of coffee machine is right for you? See our coffee machine buying guide.
Our bean-to-cup coffee machine tests
You'd expect every coffee machine, even a basic one, to make a good coffee. But our tests have uncovered machines that don't.
That's why we judge the appearance, aroma and taste of the coffee that each machine makes in a blind taste test. These tests have revealed coffee makers that make weak, watery coffee that lacks flavour. Only the very finest will make the grade to become a Best Buy.
You also don't want a machine that's a total pain to use and clean. We put each machine through tough tests that look at every aspect of using the machine, including filling it, removing the drip tray and water tank, adjusting settings, and cleaning it after each use.
We also check how hot the coffee is, how well it froths milk and how noisy it is. Head to our independent coffee machine reviews to find the best model for you.