Last Updated on January 28, 2023
Best Espresso Machines Under $100 – 2023 Review
When Italian Luigi Bezzera filed a patent in the early 1900’s for a machine that forced boiling water and steam through coffee grinds into a cup, he probably had no idea what would come from that. Or, maybe he did.
The word ‘espresso’ (not ex-press-o, please) is an Italian word, no surprise there, that is the past participle of the word esprimere. It means “to express” or “to press out”. So our term, caffé espresso literally means “pressed-out coffee”.
If you were to be brewing a caffé espresso in Italy it would be defined by “the four Ms”:
- Miscela ~ the coffee bean blend
- Macinazione ~ the grinding process
- Macchina ~ the machine
- Mano ~ the person making the espresso
Flash forward to today, and the goal of discovering the best espresso machine under $100 that will create, for you, the caffé espresso with the taste, texture, and crema of your java dreams, the strong coffee you’re yearning for. That’s our mission, my friend.
Please note that we make every effort to locate and evaluate products that fit the pricing criteria, but we don’t have control over price increases that may move a product into a different pricing tier.
If you happen to click on a link and then make a purchase, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.
- The Best Espresso Machines Under $100 – Our Recommendations & List for 2023
- Why Invest in an Inexpensive Espresso Machine?
- What Should You Look for in a Budget Espresso Machine? BUYING GUIDE
- Bars of pressure
- Frothing capability
- Single or Double Shot
- Ease of use
- Warranty and Customer Service
- What Types of Espresso Machines are There?
- Best Espresso Machines Under $100
The Best Espresso Machines Under $100 – Our Recommendations & List for 2023
Here’s the quick version and list, with much more detail for each machine recommended below. By the way, our recommendations are not ranked. Any one of these espresso machines under $100 could be the right choice for you. Because…we’re all unique coffee-drinkers with personal preferences!
How do we come up with our ‘best of’ list? Honestly, with time, and attention to detail. We scour the internet world, discover what’s available, and filter out the machines that don’t make the cut. Then, we study the features and benefits individually for those that look promising, comb through the reviews and actually read them, to identify the pros and cons of each model as identified by real-life users. From there, we identify the top…the best…the most consistently rated higher…and present them to you.
- IMUSA USA GAU-18202 4-Cup Espresso/Cappuccino Maker
- Premium Cappuccino with Bar Pump Automatic Espresso Machine
- Capresso Steam PRO Espresso/Cappuccino Machine
- Brentwood Espresso and Cappuccino Maker
- Mr. Coffee Caf Steam Automatic Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
Why Invest in an Inexpensive Espresso Machine?
Searching for the best espresso machine on a budget explains the reasoning for many of us. It’s simple. We can only afford to spend so much money, and if $100 is the limit, it’s the limit.
Or, you might be quite curious about creating your espresso drinks at home, to save the time and expense of having to get in your car and go for a ride to the coffee shop to enjoy one. Keeping the cost relatively low will give you the experience without a huge investment.
And, some of us just don’t want to spend our money. We like to save our money. So the thought of investing more than $100 is just not palatable. We want a cheap espresso maker. Nothin’ wrong with that.
The bottom line? Just realize that it’s a machine with working parts, and by purchasing a budget model there may be a higher chance of less than perfect performance.
All that said, there are a number of highly-rated inexpensive espresso machines available, most of them advertised as automatic or semi-automatic. And we’ve identified them for you right here.
TIP: Invest a few dollars more for an electric Burr Grinder to grind your whole bean dark or espresso roast coffee very fine, an essential step for brewing an espresso that you’ll love!
What Should You Look for in a Budget Espresso Machine? BUYING GUIDE
Of course, the operative word here is ‘budget’, as the goal is to discover the best espresso machine under $100. The age-old (yet still very true) adage, “you get what you pay for”, should be stamped on our foreheads as we go over this section. 🙂
Can you find an espresso maker for less than $100? Absolutely. There are quite a few models available and in this article we’ve researched and are recommending those that are the most highly rated overall.
Can you spend thousands of dollars on an espresso machine? Yep. And anywhere in-between, too.
If you can, consider all of these factors and determine what is most important to you. In the end, you might decide to spend a little more (or a lot more) than a hundred bucks to get what you really want. Or, opt for a cheap espresso machine with your eyes open and expectations at a realistic level.
Bars of pressure
One of the essential parts of the successful espresso brewing equation is pressure; bars of pressure specifically. The industry standard is 9 bars PSI, but that doesn’t guarantee a better quality shot of espresso.
What else makes up this equation? Well, the coffee that you choose for sure, as well as the grind, which is really, really fine. And, if you’re working with an espresso machine that involves some manual effort, guess what? Your espresso-making skills can make, or break, the result.
It’s possible to create an enjoyable shot of espresso with a machine that produces 3.5 bars of pressure. Some feel that 15 bars of pressure is needed for a high quality shot of espresso.
Bottom line? It’s personal preference as well as what your budget can tolerate.
An espresso machine that includes a frother is convenient and kind of fun, but remember that it’s one more piece of equipment that could possibly become a problem. And, it needs to be cleaned regularly. There is typically a learning curve to using the frother, too, so it would be helpful to take a look at reviewer comments about it for the machine you’re considering. Many reviewers will give great detail about the pros and cons of milk frothers!
A simple solution is to invest a small amount of money into an aeroccino milk frother. Easy to use, easy to clean. No worries.
Single or Double Shot
Think about how you’re going to use your espresso machine, and how many people will want to enjoy a fresh espresso at the same time. If you’re going to efficiency and quicker delivery, consider an espresso machine with a double shot capacity.
And, the double shot machine is pretty awesome looking as it reposes on your counter.
Ease of use
Do you want to push a button (well, almost), stand back and wait for the magic, or are you willing to put some effort into producing your espresso?
It’s really an important consideration, especially since you’re searching for an affordable espresso machine. Chances are you’ll have to do some type of preparation and/or in-process work in return for the lower cost.
It’s always wise to spend a few minutes of your time to learn the details about an espresso machine, particularly when it comes to the cleaning process. A dirty machine won’t give you what you want in taste and enjoyment, so it’s best to find out before you buy, how much time you’ll spend cleaning the machine.
In general, the more features and components it has, the longer you’ll spend keeping it clean.
Warranty and Customer Service
Just like with cleaning, you’ll want to know what type of warranty, if any, is offered with the espresso machine you’re considering.
By the way, our recommendations include this information whenever we can obtain it.
TIP: It’s possible to brew cup of (almost…really close) espresso without an espresso machine. Curious? I’d love to tell you more! Make espresso coffee without an espresso machine
What Types of Espresso Machines are There?
There are four main types of espresso machines, and it’s really important to understand what you’re buying. They can function and perform quite differently. Some require a lot of human intervention (barista style) and with others it can be as simple as pushing a button. Well, almost.
If you don’t mind putting some work into creating your espresso this could be the choice for you. It gives you more control over the process (although that’s a good/bad thing…more opportunity to mess things up!) to create a very personalized espresso experience.
You’ll pay more for this type of machine so prepare the budget. But it looks very attractive and may impress your friends.
If you’ve got the know-how or are willing to put in the time to learn, can afford the investment, a manual espresso machine could be very cool.
The most popular model is the semi-automatic espresso machine. It’s easier to use than the manual type of machine although it still gives you some control over the process and can result in a very tasty shot of espresso.
The cost may be more affordable, with some models in the several hundred dollar range, some less, although you can also pay thousands for this type of espresso machine.
There is still a learning curve, though, and it’s not as easy to use at the automatic espresso maker.
The fully automatic espresso machine is available in a wide variety of price ranges, from a couple hundred dollars to thousands.
They offer the simplest form of making espresso, with the automated delivery of the amount of water used in the process. If you’re super particular about how you want your espresso it may be a problem. But, if you want ease of preparation this could be the ticket.
So, if you want to push a button and magically create a shot of espresso, pay attention. Most of the time, all you need to do is add the coffee grounds and hit that magic button. Some models also offer built-in coffee grinders and other bells and whistles.
Your espresso is quick and easy. If this works for you (maybe you like to enjoy several espressos during the day), this all-in-one espresso machine may be the perfect solution.
They can be pricey for sure, but you may be able to find one that satisfies you for a couple hundred bucks.
Best Espresso Machines Under $100
Shop with Amazon
IMUSA USA GAU-18202 4 Cup Espresso/Cappuccino Maker
well rated little machine
- 4 cups easy pour carafe
- Removable drip tray
- 5 bar working pressure
- Milk frother with variable steam control
- No automatic shut off
- Learning curve to determine the correct grind to get the best crema
Over 5,000 reviewers have given this inexpensive espresso machine 4.4 stars overall. It’s small enough to transport to the office, includes a frother, and can brew a variety of espresso drinks.
There’s a lot to like about this espresso machine for less than $100.
- Please refer to user guide or user manual or user guide (provided below in PDF) before first use
TIP: The brand of coffee you choose is very important when brewing espresso. Find the best ground coffee to ensure a tasty and satisfactory result.
Shop with Wayfair
Premium Cappuccino with Bar Pump Automatic Espresso Machine
affordable and reliable
- High pressure 15 bar pump
- 2 shot dual stainless steel filter
- Stainless steel steam wand
- Light and compact
- 90 day manufacturer’s warranty
- Some reviewers state the espresso is weak
It was not easy to find flaws with this affordable espresso machine. Reviewers are very pleased with the espresso produced and state it is not difficult to learn how to use. Current pricing is slightly over $100, but just by a few bucks, so we decided to keep it on our list.
- 15-bar professional pressure for rich tasting espresso
- Stainless steel steam wand
- Removable drip tray for easy clean
- 51 Oz large capacity removable tank
- 2 Shot dual stainless steel filter
- Coffee scoop for easy measuring
- 1050 watt high power heater
Capresso Steam PRO Espresso/Cappuccino Machine
compact machine at a great price
- Exclusive coffee/steam selector
- Easy to use
- Light and compact
- 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
- Some reviewers had issues with the milk frother
- Plastic construction with stainless steel accents
Well priced (currently around $70) and many 5-star ratings for this compact semi-automatic espresso/cappuccino machine. If price is the driving factor and you don’t need lots of bells and whistles, take a close look at this machine.
- Illuminated on / off switch
- Sleek stainless steel accents
- Boiler cap with built-in safety valve
- Ability to make hot water for tea, café Americanos, hot chocolate, and other hot beverages
- Swivel frother with adjustable steam output is perfect for frothing or steaming milk to prepare cappuccinos and lattes
Shop with Walmart
Brentwood Espresso and Cappuccino Maker
brews up to 20 oz. of espresso coffee
- Brews up to 20 oz. of espresso coffee
- Easy to use
- Compact design
- 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
- Cheaply made; longevity may be an issue
- Learning curve, but not hard to master
Your search for the best espresso machine under 100 dollars might come to an end here, with the positive reviews and the incredible price…currently less than $50.
- Brews up to 20 oz of espresso coffee
- Powerful steamer to make rich cappuccinos and lattes
- Glass decanter
- Reusable stainless steel portafilter
- Brentwood coffee maker includes 2-in-1 measuring scoop and tamp
Mr. Coffee Caf Steam Automatic Espresso and Cappuccino Machine, 20 oz., Silver
simple, affordable, compact
- Easy on the budget
- Easy to use once familiar with the machine
- Compact design, doesn’t take up counter space
- Contact manufacturer for warranty info.
- May leak if water tank is overfilled
- Some reviewers had issues with the frother
Many happy reviewers of this compact and very affordable espresso machine. As of this writing, less than $40. For the money it looks like a great buy for the ability to make your own espresso coffee at home.
- Brews up to 4 shots of delicious espresso coffee
- Steam heat system forces hot steam through the filter for a dark, rich espresso brew
- Milk frother provides frothing for creamy cappuccinos and lattes
- Glass decanter with serving measures allows you to see how much is being brewed
- Removable, washable drip tray collects coffee drips and keeps brew space tidy
Prefer to shop on Amazon? Here’s a similar model to consider.
Discovering the best espresso machine under 100 dollars for you and your lifestyle may take a little bit of time. Even though the price point is considered ‘budget’, you want the most reliable and affordable espresso machine. Because the bottom line is, we want to brew our espresso coffee at home and enjoy it whenever we want!
Candi Randolph is a coffee lover, blogger, and content creator who loves to share her knowledge with the coffee-drinking world. You’ll often find her tending to her coffee bar at home, deciding which method to use to brew her next cup of java. Life is full of important decisions. ☕