Finding the best drip coffee maker is a difficult process, mostly because the “best” is different depending on what you need.

We prefer manual brewing methods such as these ones, however drip coffee makers have come a long way in the last few years, and hence, they are worth a look for certain situations.

Below you’ll learn exactly how to choose a great drip coffee maker from a bad one, and then we give a few recommendations of coffee makers which are turning heads in the industry...

6 Tips for Choosing a Great Drip Brewer

1. Carafe Capacity

Do you only want a single cup in the morning, or do you need multiple? Is it just you drinking the coffee, or do you have a family in need?

Figure out how much coffee you need to make at one time, then factor that in to your decision. Look at the carafe capacity. Commonly, you will find either 4, 10, or 14 cup carafes; 12, being the most popular.

Note: In case you didn’t know, the “carafe” is the pot or container the coffee drips down in to.

2. Programming Features

Some drip coffee makers can be programmed to turn on and off at certain times, remain hot for so long before shutting off, and more.

This may be beneficial to you if you’re the kind of person who likes to wake up to the smell of coffee, or who doesn’t want to be bothered to brew a cup in the morning. Nowadays, most coffee makers are able to be programmed to turn on at a certain time.

However, some of them are made to brew extremely quickly and don’t need this feature. Determine whether or not you’d like this feature, and put it on your list of wants.

3. Ability to Pause Mid-Brew

Some coffee drip brewers are able to be paused mid-brew, allowing you to pour a cup before it’s finished.

If you’re the kind of person who needs their coffee ASAP, you may want to add this to your wish list. Of course, we’ve looked at a few that do this!

4. Automatic Shut Off

As mentioned in the programming section, some brewers can be set to shut off after a certain amount of time.

Unlike these programmable brewers, still others are set to do this automatically without the need for programming.

If you’re the kind of person who rushes out the door in the morning, it can be easy to forget to turn the coffee maker off. That’s where this feature comes in handy.

5. Water Filters

Do you have a filter on your kitchen sink? If not, you’re probably making your coffee with less-than-stellar water, which takes away from the flavor!

Fear not – some coffee brewers come with a built in water filter for the best flavor.

Keep in mind this comes with the added effort and expense of replacing the filters, so you may or may not want them.

6. Warranty

Most high-end brewers come with a 3 to 5-year warranty, but some only have a single year on them.

If your home has a lot of kids or animals running around, or your paranoid of the coffee maker simply giving out from bad luck, you should keep an eye out for a long warranty.

READ ME: Common Overlooked (yet important) Factors to Consider

Hot Plate Vs Thermal Carafe

The question here is whether you want energy efficiency/better flavor or a more affordable price.

Glass carafes tend to be cheaper, but the hot plate heats the coffee further, which over-extracts the oils and makes it taste bitter. Additionally, a hot plate has to be continually turned on to stay hot, which uses more energy.

A thermal carafe, on the other hand, keeps the coffee at an optimum brewing temperature of 195-205 degrees for 1-2 hours, which some believe to keep a better flavor. It also saves some energy in the process. However, they tend to be more expensive.

Bean Grinder - Have You Already Got One?

If you prefer freshly ground coffee, you may want a grinder built in to your brewer.

While they are more expensive than brewers without grinders, it might still save you money over buying a separate grinder.

Additionally, having both machines in one will save counter space.

Some people claim having a separate grinder is a must for the best flavor and the best size grounds. If you’re a stickler for the absolute best, you may still want to buy a separate machine.

If you don’t mind buying pre-ground coffee, then you can skip this feature

Size Matters

Speaking of saving counter space, the size of your brewer might be important to you if you don’t have a lot of room.

Some brewers look nice and compact online....and then they arrive at your doorstep and half your kitchen counter is gone.​

Some brewers are big and bulky with tons of features, and others are minimalist and small. This is often overlooked when buying a new drip coffee machine, and you may want to consider it.

The 5 Best Drip Coffee Makers in 2017







The Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Switch Coffeemaker




Cuisinart Perfect Temp Programmable Coffeemaker




The Zojirushi Fresh Brew Coffee Maker




The Cuisinart Grind-and-Brew Automatic Coffeemaker




The Bonavita Original Coffee Brewer




The Technivorm Moccamaster




These automatic drip coffee machines love coarse grinds like these

These machines like more coarse grinds!

With all these points in mind, here are the best drip coffee brewers based on different needs. Keep in mind they are in no particular order.

The Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Switch Coffeemaker

If you’re looking for an all-around goof brewer at an affordable price, you’ll love this simple yet effective coffee maker. Mr. Coffee has always been a reliable, simple, affordable brand that covers the basics.

While it is very simple with next to no features, it gets the job done.

However, with a mid-brew pause, it might have enough to keep you happy at its measly $20 price.

Keep in mind it doesn’t brew at a hot enough temperature to extract the flavor of your coffee, so don’t put any really expensive grounds in it. This is more for cheaper great value brand coffee.

This coffee maker is ideal for those who simply want a decent cup of joe at a great price, without the fancy stuff.


  • Small size won’t take up a lot of counter space. 
  • Re-usable basket filter means you won’t need to buy tons of paper filters, and won’t have to worry about the mess if they rip.
  • Includes a pause feature to allow sneaking a cup mid-brew.
  • At only $20, it is one of the most affordable, reliable brewers you’ll find on the market.


  • You can’t program it to start in the morning.
  • It doesn’t brew at the optimum 195-205 degree temperature.
  • Does not automatically shut off.
  • It makes 4 *5 ounce* cups, not 8 ounces. It only makes 2 normal sized cups.

The Cuisinart Perfect Temp 14-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker

Here’s one of my personal favorites. This coffee maker is sweet because it has almost all the features you could want.

A bit of an investment at $100, but it makes a damn good cup of coffee (for a drip brewer, at least. If you really want good coffee, you’ll need to use something better.)

It is also one of few that have a 14-cup carafe capacity in this price range. Plus, it has a sweet feature of temperature control, which I love because I hate being burned by my coffee. On the down side, though, it definitely effects the taste.

Another nice thing is the fully automatic 24-hour programmability. It has a self-cleaning feature, a 1-4 cup setting and auto-shutoff.

However, the pour spout is a little awkward and it’s easy to spill on the counter.

Additionally, some people find that making over 10 cups of coffee pushes the grounds in to your brew. That makes the 14-cup capacity really a 10-cup capacity if it does that to you.

Finally, I wish it had a sensor to tell the machine not to brew if the carafe is missing. It’s lead to more than one big mess.

If you’re looking for a simple, all-around good coffee drip maker, this is the one for you.


  • Tons of programmable features.
  • You can change the temperature of the coffee.
  • Includes a pause feature to allow sneaking a cup mid-brew.
  • Between the water filter and the optimum brewing temperature of ~200 degrees, the coffee tastes excellent.


  • The pour spout is easy to spill from.
  • Re-usable filter means you’ll have to clean it often and may get some residue in your coffee.
  • Some people found grounds in their coffee if they made more than 10 cups at once.
  • There is no sensor to tell the machine whether the carafe is present for automatic brewing.

The Zojirushi Fresh Brew (Plus Thermal Carafe) Coffee Maker

As mentioned earlier, thermal carafe’s offer fresher, hotter coffee that lasts longer than glass carafe’s.

You’ll want a thermal brewer if you like to brew one pot and drink from it an hour or two later. This one is on the less expensive end of the spectrum! If that sounds like you – the Zojirushi fresh brew (+ thermal carafe) coffee maker is your boy!

The removable water storage is also a nice feature to keep accidental spillage to a minimum.

Keep in mind this one is pretty large and takes up a lot of counter space. It also doesn’t have an automatic shutoff feature and the directions tell you to unplug it after every use, which can be a hassle.

Overall, if you’re looking for an affordable thermal brewer, this may be the one for you.


  • Thermal carafe offers hot coffee for hours after being brewed.
  • Re-usable basket filter.
  • Removable water tank for easy filling.
  • Automated cleaning and all the programmability you need.


  • Rather large design takes up a lot of counter space.
  • Some users find the carafe doesn’t keep the coffee as hot as they would like.
  • Does not automatically shut off.
  • The directions say you need to unplug it after every use.

The Cuisinart DGB-700BC Grind-and-Brew 12-Cup Automatic Coffeemaker

If you want freshly ground coffee, it doesn’t get much fresher than grinding it straight into the machine. This coffee maker, which by the way, is beautiful looking, also has plenty of programmable features that will get you excited.

However, it is a pain to clean and you need to follow the directions to keep it in tip top shape and tasting fresh. You really have to clean it after every use.

The grind-and-brew might be your go-to if you want to save money and counter space on two machines in one. Then again, it might still be cheaper to go with two separate machines.


  • Built-in grinder allows for freshly ground coffee beans every time.
  • Save money and counter space.
  • All the programmability you need!
  • Gives you the ability to control the strength of your coffee at the press of a button.


  • If you buy a cheaper coffee maker and a separate grinder, you might still save money at the cost of quality.
  • You have to clean and dry it in between every use.
  • The grounds are pushed into the filter, making it a pain to clean.
  • Takes a while to brew the coffee.

The Bonavita 8-Cup Original Coffee Brewer

This Bonavita bad-boy is one of the most popular drip coffee brewers on the market among coffee enthusiasts. Between its large shower head and easy one-button functionality, it’s easy to see why.

While very plain in design, there is a nice simplistic appeal to it that matches almost any kitchen. It also has holes in the basket to allow steam to escape from the grounds. This process leads to better tasting coffee.

That said, the one button design makes for no programmable features. Also, the showerhead doesn’t come off so it can be a pain to clean. Finally, it doesn’t automatically shut off.

This is the one for you if you want a good pot of coffee that stays hot for hours and is simple to use.


  • One button means no fussing with complicated programming features.
  • Large shower head for evenly wet grounds and better extraction.
  • The brew basket allows steam to escape, venting it from the grounds.
  • Thermal carafe gives you long-lasting hot coffee.


  • With one button comes no programmability.
  • The awesome showerhead can be really difficult to clean, as it doesn’t detach.
  • Does not automatically shut off.
  • Some say plastic parts make for poor tasting coffee when the brew comes in contact.

The Technivorm Moccamaster 10-Cup Coffee Brewer with Thermal Carafe

    Another favorite among coffee enthusiasts, the Moccamaster, is a beautifully designed drip brewer that almost looks as if you might see it in an alchemy lab. I think it’s freakin’ awesome.

At its steep price range of $300, however, you may find it to be too much of an investment. Especially since it has no programmability.

But, it makes the best damn cup of coffee a drip brewer can possibly make. It uses all metal parts where it comes in contact with your coffee, and it’s easy to take apart to clean. It also has a 5 year warranty, so you won’t have to worry about it breaking down on you.

If you just want the best of the best and are willing to invest, this is the brewer for you. Both this Moccamaster and the Bonavita (above) are favorites, and choosing between one is tough. Read this article to see how they compare, head to head.


  • All metal parts (in the brewing process).
  • Awesome 5-year warranty.
  • Makes as good of a cup of coffee as a drip brewer can.
  • Everything comes apart for really easy cleaning.


  • You can’t program it to do anything automatically.
  • Re-usable filter means you’ll have to clean it often and may get some residue in your coffee.
  • Does not automatically shut off.
  • At $300, this is no small investment for a coffee maker.


Coffee is one of those industries, where you get what you pay for (in my opinion), and therefore, when choosing something as crucial as your daily coffee maker, it pays to invest – after all, you’ll be using it daily, right?

For that reason, My vote goes to the Technivorm Moccamaster – yes, it’s the most expensive coffee maker on this list, but if you break the price down to a per cup cost (i.e. you divide your investment by the number of coffee’s you assume you’ll get from it; likely thousands) – you’re paying peanuts for a great quality coffee experience.

The Technivorm Moccamaster (comes with a Thermal Carafe)

It’s designed to deliver the best-possible machine made cup of coffee, its includes a thermal carafe to keep your coffee at the ideal temp for longer, and it has a solid 5 year warranty – what’s not to love?

Now it’s your turn...

Do you have a favorite drip coffee maker? What do you love or hate about it? Let me know in the comments below.

If you found this article helpful, please share it with other coffee lovers!

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