The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Thermal Coffee Maker

In the world of coffee lovers, there's nothing quite like a piping hot cup of freshly brewed coffee. And when it comes to keeping that delicious coffee hot and flavorful throughout the day, a thermal carafe coffee maker is a game-changer. With so many options on the market, how do you choose the best one? We've compiled a list of the top contenders, including the OXO Brew 9-Cup Stainless Steel Coffee Maker, the Bonavita 8-Cup Coffee Maker, and the Technivorm Moccamaster, just to name a few. So whether you're a coffee snob or a tech enthusiast, we've got you covered. Get ready to find your perfect brew with our guide to the best thermal coffee makers available.

What to Consider When Choosing a Thermal Carafe Coffee Maker

Carafe Capacity

The amount of coffee you consume daily or the number of people you share it with will determine the ideal carafe capacity for you.

If you only drink a few cups of coffee per day, opting for a smaller carafe size can save you money while still providing the features and settings you desire. However, if you enjoy entertaining guests or having Sunday brunch with family, investing in a larger carafe would be more suitable. 

Thermal carafes are designed for convenience, allowing you to brew coffee once and keep it hot. Opting for a larger carafe ensures that you won't need to make multiple pots for everyone to have a cup. 

Settings

Different coffee makers offer a wide range of settings and functionalities.

By determining your priority features, you can choose a coffee maker that aligns with your preferences. Consider the following questions:

  • Do you prefer customizable brewing options or preset automatic modes?
  • Do you need a coffee pot with an auto-shutoff feature for mornings when you're not fully awake?
  • Would you like the convenience of programming your preferred brew settings, or do you enjoy tailoring each brew to the specific beans you're using?

Cleaning and Maintenance

The cleanliness of your coffee maker plays a crucial role in brewing great-tasting coffee.

Over time, residual coffee grounds and hard-water buildup can lead to bitter flavors and unpleasant odors. Neglecting regular cleaning can even result in clogging and blockages that render your machine unusable. 

To avoid these issues, it's important to choose a coffee maker that is easy to clean, with removable parts and dishwasher-safe components where applicable. Making cleaning hassle-free ensures that you'll use your coffee maker frequently and enjoy delicious, cost-effective coffee at home instead of relying on external coffee shops. 

Coffee Brewing Temperature

For optimal flavor and extraction, a coffee maker should be capable of maintaining a water temperature between 195°F and 205°F.

Boiling water, which reaches temperatures of 212°F, over-extracts coffee and results in a muddy taste. Consistently maintaining the ideal temperature range allows for a sweet, bold, and balanced cup of coffee every time. 

OXO Brew 9-Cup Stainless Steel Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 15 x 8.3 x 17.2 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 9 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

As someone who frequently tests coffee makers, I rotate through various models every quarter. However, the stainless steel OXO Brew 9-Cup Coffee Maker has earned a permanent place on my countertop. Not only do I admire its sleek appearance, but its compact dimensions (matching the average coffee maker in height and width) and a depth of only 6.5 inches make it a space-saving option. If the modern conical shape doesn't suit your taste, the brand offers a more traditional-looking 8-cup coffee maker as well. 

I appreciate the user-friendly design of the OXO Brew, which features a single button for time settings, programming the timer, starting the coffee maker, and selecting the desired quantity from options of 2-4 cups or 5-9 cups. The display indicates both the time and the brew status. Once the coffee is ready, a countdown timer begins, ensuring freshness for up to 60 minutes. The double-wall stainless steel thermal carafe keeps the coffee hot, and the pause and pour feature allows for interruption of the brewing cycle to pour a cup, which can then be resumed by placing the carafe back in position.

Other notable features include a removable silicone mixing tube inside the coffee pot, which blends the coffee during brewing, and the Specialty Coffee Association certification, guaranteeing high-quality performance. With an evenly dispersing rainmaker showerhead and temperature control brewing (from 197.6°F to 204.8°F), the OXO Brew 9-Cup consistently delivers delicious coffee with minimal effort.

Pros:

  • Specialty Coffee Association certification
  • Simple controls
  • Pause and pour feature
  • Rainmaker showerhead
  • Thermal carafe keeps coffee hot
  • Internal mixing tube in carafe

Cons:

  • Non-removable water tank

BLACK+DECKER Thermal Coffee Maker

BLACK DECKER-Thermal-Coffee-Maker

  • Capacity: 60oz
  • Weight: 4 pounds
  • Dimensions: 11 x 8 x 11.5 inches

Renowned for their power tools, BLACK+DECKER also excels at producing impressive coffee machines.

Their Thermal Coffee Maker offers simplicity and ease of use while delivering a delicious 12 cups of smooth drip coffee in just minutes. With its programmable features, you can enjoy fresh coffee without the wait, returning home to the enticing aroma and a readily available cup.

During the extraction process, the showerhead ensures even saturation of the coffee grounds, resulting in a full-bodied and robust flavor at any time of day. The auto shut-off function adds to the convenience and safety of this machine.

Designed with an intelligent spout, pouring coffee without any spills or mess is a breeze.

Although a few consumers have reported lid issues over time, handling this coffee maker with care will ensure its longevity.

Pros:

  • Generous 12-cup capacity
  • Highly programmable
  • Drip-free pouring

Bonavita 8-Cup Coffee Maker

Bonavita-8-Cup-Coffee-Maker

  • Capacity: 40oz
  • Weight: 6.13 pounds
  • Dimensions: 12.2 x 6.8 x 12.4 inches

The Bonavita 8-Cup Coffee Maker is a compact, yet highly effective solution for brewing delicious coffee.

Featuring a rugged stainless steel build, this machine is built to withstand sustained use. The stainless steel carafe provides excellent thermal and insulating properties, ensuring your coffee stays hot for longer. With its double-walled construction, heat retention is maximized.

Operating this coffee maker is a breeze thanks to its one-touch functionality, taking the hassle out of your home barista experience.

The 1500-watt element efficiently heats the water to the ideal temperature range of 195°F to 205°F, allowing for optimal coffee extraction.

Equipped with a pre-infusion mode replicating the pour-over method, the grounds are lightly wetted before brewing, ensuring proper degassing and enhancing the overall flavor.

While a few users have reported build quality issues, this Bonavita Coffee Maker remains one of the best thermal carafe options on the market at a competitive price.

Pros:

  • Powerful heater
  • Pre-infusion mode
  • Evenly saturated grounds

Technivorm Moccamaster

Technivorm-Moccamaster

  • Capacity: 40oz
  • Weight: 6.5 pounds
  • Dimensions: 15.25 x 6.75 x 11.5 inches

The Technivorm Moccamaster is an iconic thermal carafe coffee maker renowned for its exceptional performance and build quality. Although it falls on the higher end of the price spectrum, it delivers outstanding results.

The Moccamaster's design is visually striking, with its tall and slender frame featuring stainless steel accents combined with black plastic. Its sleek appearance enhances any kitchen counter.

Operating this machine is incredibly straightforward. By simply topping up the water reservoir, adding your favorite freshly ground coffee beans, and pressing a button, you can enjoy gourmet drip coffee.

Brewing a 40oz batch of coffee takes only 4 to 6 minutes, providing rapid delivery comparable to a French press, without the hassle of cleanup.

The highly adjustable brew basket allows you to customize the brewing process to achieve your preferred coffee strength.

With temperature control settings ranging from 196°F to 205°F, you can ensure that your coffee is brewed at the optimal temperature for extraction.

While it may require a slightly higher investment, the Technivorm Moccamaster stands out as one of the finest thermal carafe coffee makers available.

Pros:

  • Brews a full carafe in 6 minutes
  • Simple one-button operation
  • Striking aesthetics

Cons:

  • Pricier compared to other drip coffee makers

OXO-Brew-Coffee-Maker

  • Capacity: 64oz
  • Weight: 10.3 pounds
  • Dimensions: 16.1 x 9 x 14.8 inches

OXO's Brew stands as one of the top thermal carafe coffee makers, offering excellent performance at a competitive price point.

Certified by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA), this machine guarantees high-quality brewing standards.

You can choose to make single cups or brew an entire 8-cup carafe, catering to your coffee needs.

The BetterBrew system optimizes water temperature, volume, and brewing time, empowering you to customize your brewing experience to the fullest.

Unlike many single-serve machines dependent on pods, the OXO Brew allows for the use of freshly ground coffee beans, delivering superior flavor profiles.

When you have coffee remaining, the double-walled thermal carafe keeps it warm for extended periods, ensuring you can enjoy a hot cup whenever you desire.

The rainmaker showerhead ensures even saturation of the coffee grounds for consistently excellent extraction.

While there have been some comments about the water temperature being too hot for certain preferences, the overall user reviews for this model are overwhelmingly positive. Consider if the OXO Brew is the right fit for your home kitchen.

Pros:

  • Robust extraction
  • Even water distribution
  • Outstanding overall value

Keurig K-Café SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker with WiFi Compatibility

  • Dimensions: 11 x 12.7 x 12.1 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 1 cup from 2 to 12 ounces
  • Descaling indicator: No
  • Programmable: Yes

If you prefer smaller portions or a variety of coffee options, the Keurig K-Café Smart Single Serve Coffee Maker is an ideal choice.

This versatile machine allows you to make 6-, 8-, 10-, and 12-ounce cups of coffee, as well as 2- and 4-ounce shots for cappuccinos and lattes.

Featuring five different strength levels and six temperature settings, this coffee maker offers customization to suit your preferences. Additionally, its Wi-Fi compatibility enables access to step-by-step instructions for various coffee drinks through the Keurig App. It can even be controlled using voice assistants like Alexa.

Utilizing Keurig K-Cup pods, the machine includes a hot- and cold-milk frother with different speed options. The 60-ounce removable water reservoir ensures convenient filling and cleaning.

Pros:

  • Versatile coffee and espresso maker
  • Hot- and cold-milk frother
  • Removable water tank

Cuisinart DGB-800 Fully Automatic Burr Grind & Brew, 12-Cup Glass

  • Dimensions: 8.13 x 15.5 x 9.98 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 12 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

For those seeking a budget-friendly option with extensive features, the Cuisinart DGB-800 Fully Automatic Burr Grind & Brew Coffee Maker is an excellent choice. 

This model stands out with its half-pound sealed bean hopper, preserving the freshness of your coffee beans. The coffee grinder feature can be turned off when using pre-ground coffee. The auto-rinse function prevents any coffee grounds from entering the brew basket during cleaning.

Equipped with a showerhead that ensures even water distribution over the coffee grounds, the machine offers three flavor strength options: bold, extra-bold, and regular. A brew pause feature enables you to interrupt the brew cycle for 20 seconds and quickly grab a cup of coffee. Additionally, an "Empty" warning indicator prompts you to empty the filter basket after each brew cycle.

Pros:

  • Built-in coffee grinder
  • Sealed bean hopper
  • Option to use pre-ground coffee
  • Auto-rinse function

Cons:

  • Non-removable water tank
  • Glass carafe

Bonavita Connoisseur 8-Cup One-Touch Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 12.2 x 12.4 x 6.8 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 8 cups
  • Descaling indicator: No
  • Programmable: No

The Bonavita Connoisseur 8-Cup Performance Coffee Brewer proves that good things do come in small packages.

This compact coffee maker boasts simplicity, elegance, and exceptional coffee taste. With minimal controls—a single dial, a power button, and an LCD screen—it ensures consistently great brewing without unnecessary complexity. The optional pre-infusion mode provides a pause for the showerhead, allowing the coffee grounds to bloom.

This model features a detachable filter basket and a wide water tank opening for easy pouring without spillage. The stainless steel thermal carafe's lid is equipped with a lever for controlled pouring.

Pros:

  • Specialty Coffee Association certification
  • Thermal carafe
  • Simple operation
  • Rainmaker showerhead

Cons:

De'Longhi Magnifica Coffee and Espresso Maker

  • Dimensions: 9.44 x 14.17 x 17.32 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 8 ounces/60-ounce water tank
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

If you're looking to enhance your barista skills and enjoy a variety of coffee options at home, the De'Longhi Magnifica Evo Coffee and Espresso Machine is a top contender.

Not only does it brew delicious coffee, but it also creates espresso, cappuccino, latte macchiato, and customized lattes. It can even dispense hot water for hot chocolate and tea. The LatteCrema System technology, combined with the manual froth maker, allows for textured art and works well with regular and alternative milks.

Equipped with a conical burr grinder offering 13 settings, you can achieve your desired coffee texture. Alternatively, the grinder can be bypassed to accommodate ground coffee for larger batches.

Despite its versatile functions, this machine remains intuitive and user-friendly, with color touch icons and LCD display simplifying the brewing process.

Pros:

  • Versatile coffee and espresso maker
  • Ability to use coffee beans or ground coffee
  • Built-in burr grinder
  • Adjustable manual frother

Cons:

  • Only brews a single cup at a time

Zojirushi EC-YTC100XB Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 8 x 10 x 14.8 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 10 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

Zojirushi, known for their excellent rice cookers, also offers a remarkable 10-Cup Thermal Carafe Coffee Maker.

Featuring straightforward controls, this machine consistently delivers great-tasting hot and iced coffee. The swing-out and removable filter basket facilitate easy cleaning, while the wide water reservoir opening prevents spills while pouring.

Thanks to a steam vent on top, concerns about steam affecting nearby cabinets can be set aside. Additionally, the stainless steel thermal carafe includes a button for controlled pouring, ensuring a mess-free experience.

Convenience is further enhanced by the included "drip prevention" feature, a removable water tank, and the option to brew iced coffee.

Pros:

  • Drip prevention design
  • Removable water tank
  • Thermal carafe
  • Iced coffee brewing option

Cons:

  • Steam vents from the top, so cabinets should be kept at a safe distance

Breville Precision Brewer Thermal, Coffee Maker, Brushed Stainless Steel

  • Dimensions: 14 x 9 x 16 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 60 ounces
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

The Breville Precision Brewer Thermal in brushed stainless steel is a high-quality, programmable coffee maker that consistently delivers a superb cup of coffee.

This 60-ounce coffee maker stands out as one of the best drip coffee makers on the market. It features two brew baskets: one wide and flat-bottomed for larger quantities and one smaller and cone-shaped for smaller batches. Although the water reservoir is not removable, its wide design eliminates concerns about spills during refilling.

The machine boasts simple functionality, with a dial, start and cancel buttons, and an LCD screen. Multiple brew settings are available, including fast, gold, strong, over ice, cold brew, and My Brew. The My Brew setting allows for customization, including bloom time, brew temperature, and flow rate. After the brew cycle, the clock displays the time elapsed since brewing.

Pros:

  • Offers a variety of brew options, including over ice and cold brew
  • Dual filter baskets
  • Thermal carafe
  • SCA certified brewer

Cons:

  • Non-removable water tank

Braun MultiServe Coffee Machine

  • Dimensions: 13 x 7.1 x 15 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 10 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

The Braun MultiServe Coffee Machine not only produces excellent coffee but also offers a plethora of options for those who appreciate variety. It comes in three different color options: black, stainless steel, or white. The control panel allows you to choose between light, gold, or bold coffee, as well as iced coffee. If you prefer hot water for tea or hot chocolate, you can adjust the water temperature and use the water feature to dispense it. The coffee machine features a programmable clock, ensuring that your morning cup of coffee is prepared and waiting for you each day.

While the coffee maker includes a glass carafe, it is also compatible with travel mugs or cups using the cup shelf. The dial on the machine allows you to select various sizes, ranging from 5 to 20 ounces, or even half or a full pot of coffee. The freshness countdown lasts for an hour before the coffee maker automatically turns off. In addition, the machine emits three beeps when brewing is complete, and a hot-surface indicator light remains red until the plate has cooled down.

Pros:

  • Offers 7 brewing sizes
  • SCA certified for quality
  • Provides 4 brew choices, including iced coffee
  • Convenient removable water tank

Cons:

Ninja CFP301 DualBrew Pro System 12-Cup Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 11.39 x 9.13 x 15.54 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 12 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

Another highly recommended option is the versatile Ninja DualBrew Pro Specialty Coffee System. Upon unpacking, you'll discover various parts and accessories. The machine features a Ninja pod adapter on top for brewing pods, which can be easily removed to reveal the brew basket for coffee grounds. The digital control panel offers multiple functions, including brew style options such as classic, rich, over ice, or specialty. It also has a programmable digital clock surrounded by eight brew volumes, ranging from a small cup to a full carafe.

The intelligent hot plate can remain on for up to two hours, but this duration can be adjusted to up to four hours. The coffee maker includes a hot water mode with a separate water line. By turning on the dial, you can access the water temperature button and choose between hot or boiling water. Another standout feature of this machine is the integrated milk frother. In addition to the glass carafe, it also includes a single-serve cup platform for smaller servings. With its versatility, the Ninja DualBrew Pro Specialty Coffee System caters to a wide range of coffee preferences.

Pros:

  • Compatible with both pods and ground coffee
  • Offers 4 brew styles and a fold-away milk frother
  • Supports various cup sizes
  • Convenient removable water tank

Cons:

Best Smart Coffee Maker: Café Specialty Drip Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 7.3 x 14 x 12.5 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 10 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

The Café Smart Specialty Drip Coffee Maker is the perfect choice for coffee enthusiasts who appreciate both functionality and design. This technologically advanced coffee maker not only brews up to 10 cups of coffee but also boasts a sleek and contemporary aesthetic. It consistently delivers barista-quality coffee with a customizable brew strength to suit your preferences. Furthermore, this coffee maker has been certified by the Specialty Coffee Association, guaranteeing exceptional quality.

What sets this coffee maker apart is its smart capabilities. It can be connected to your phone via the SmartHQ app, allowing for convenient control from your mobile device. Additionally, it can be integrated with a smart speaker, enabling you to use voice commands to initiate the brewing process, specifying the number of cups, brew strength, and temperature. With the Café Smart Specialty Drip Coffee Maker, you can enjoy a fresh cup of coffee without even leaving your bed.

Although I personally prefer the manual selection using the intuitive interface, this coffee maker offers a wide range of features and comes in three elegant colors: matte white, stainless steel, and matte black. While the thermal carafe model is included, a glass carafe option is also available.

Pros:

  • Wi-Fi-enabled for convenient control
  • Includes a thermal carafe for optimal heat retention
  • Offers three stylish color choices
  • SCA-certified for exceptional quality

Cons:

  • The water tank is not removable

Best Coffee Maker for Coffee Snobs: Ratio Eight Matte Stainless Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 9 x 14 x 13.5 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 8 cups
  • Descaling indicator: No
  • Programmable: No

The Ratio Eight Matte Stainless Coffee Maker is not only visually appealing but also designed to deliver the best possible flavor, rivaling handmade pour-over coffee. Crafted with premium materials such as precision-machine aluminum, handblown borosilicate glass, hardwood, and stainless steel components, this coffee maker is as durable as it is stylish. While it lacks descaling indicators and programmable features, it excels in quality and performance, providing a uniquely satisfying coffee-drinking experience.

With a simple one-button operation, this coffee maker creates the perfect brew with its precise water delivery system. Each phase of the brewing process is illuminated on the side of the machine, allowing you to monitor the progress. The internal hot water tank maintains the ideal temperature of 200 degrees Fahrenheit, ensuring optimal extraction. The coffee maker includes a custom stainless steel filter, but it can also be used with Chemex paper filters.

One standout feature of this coffee maker is the ability to observe and enjoy the brewing process without the need for manual intervention, making it ideal for pour-over coffee enthusiasts. While it may be on the pricier side, the Ratio Eight Matte Stainless Coffee Maker offers craftsmanship and performance that surpasses many other options on the market.

Pros:

  • Impressive design for a stylish aesthetic
  • Stainless steel spiral showerhead for optimal water distribution
  • Includes a bloom cycle for enhanced flavor extraction
  • Allows customization of colors and hardwood finishes

Cons:

  • The price is higher than average, especially for the thermal carafe model
  • The water tank is not removable

Best Built-In Scale: Wolf Gourmet Programmable 10-Cup Coffee Maker

  • Dimensions: 10.83 x 9.06 x 14.38 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 10 cups
  • Descaling indicator: Yes
  • Programmable: Yes

The Wolf Gourmet Coffee Maker is a standout option not only for its iconic design with red knobs but also for its superior quality and precise temperature control, characteristic of the Wolf brand. With its stainless steel construction and thermal carafe, this coffee maker ensures that your coffee stays hot. The front-loading brew basket eliminates any issues with upper cabinets.

The coffee maker features two knobs and an LED display panel. The top knob allows you to choose between manual, Accu-Brew, or clean mode, while the brew strength can be adjusted using the actual knob in Accu-Brew mode.

The Accu-Brew mode includes a built-in scale that ensures the perfect coffee-to-water ratio. To use this feature, you simply set the desired number of cups, add water, select the brew strength, and then add coffee until the scale icon appears on the LED panel. This ensures that your coffee is brewed precisely according to your selections. The bottom knob is used for setting the clock, programming the coffee cycle, and selecting the desired cup quantity. The display panel shows the time, coffee scale, brewing status, time since brew, and even reminds you to change the water filter. The water reservoir is detachable for easy filling and cleaning, and a detachable water filter is included for use with less desirable tap water. The Wolf Gourmet Coffee Maker ensures a perfect cup of coffee with just the right amount of flavor extraction, making it one of the best drip coffee makers on the market.

Pros:

  • Removable water tank for easy maintenance
  • Iconic, swappable knobs for customization
  • Thermal carafe for optimal heat retention
  • Adjustable brew strength for personalized taste
  • Auto pause feature for mid-brew coffee enjoyment
  • Rainmaker showerhead for even water distribution

Cons:

The Advantages of Owning a Thermal Carafe Coffee Maker

Owning a thermal carafe coffee maker offers two main advantages: durability and prolonged heat retention. Thermal carafes keep coffee hot for extended periods thanks to their vacuum-sealed double-wall insulation, which effectively retains heat. Although thermal carafe coffee makers tend to be more expensive than those with glass carafes, they offer increased durability, as they are not prone to breaking like glass.

  • Thermal carafes keep coffee hot for long periods of time
  • Thermal carafes offer sturdiness and durability compared to glass carafes

How We Chose the Best Thermal Carafe Coffee Makers

Our selection of the best thermal carafe coffee makers is based on extensive research. In making our choices, we considered factors such as size, capacity, design, functionality, ease of use, and cleaning.

The selected coffee makers brew between 1 and 12 cups of coffee and come with thermal carafes. Many of them offer adjustable brew strength options, programmable features, including timers and auto-shutoff functions. Some machines even come with special features such as built-in grinders, milk frothers, or compatibility with coffee pods.

Furthermore, we took into account user satisfaction rates to ensure that the products we chose met high standards. Only those that met our rigorous criteria were included in this list.

Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio

Hamilton-Beach-FlexBrew-Trio

  • Capacity: 80 ounces
  • Weight: 8 pounds
  • Dimensions: 15.1 x 14.5 x 13.6 inches

Hamilton Beach is renowned for its affordable coffee machines that deliver great quality. The Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio is no exception. Unlike other inexpensive thermal carafe coffee makers, this machine doesn't compromise on build quality or performance.

The FlexBrew Trio is a 2-way coffee maker, also known as a dual-brew coffee maker. It allows you to use freshly ground coffee or K-Cup pods. This versatility saves space on your kitchen counter and provides convenience and gourmet coffee whenever you desire.

With an 80-ounce water tank, you won't need to refill it constantly. It can brew up to 10 small cups of coffee, and any leftovers can stay warm for hours in the highly insulated stainless steel carafe.

For single-serve coffee, you can use either pods or freshly ground coffee according to your preference. This coffee maker is one of the most flexible and versatile options available.

When using K-Cup pods, you can choose from over 400 Keurig blends, including offerings from major brands like Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts. Additionally, the single-serve side of the machine accommodates a travel mug, making it ideal for your morning commute.

  • Flexible 2-way coffee maker
  • Independent water tanks
  • Single-serve coffee on demand

Keurig-K-Duo-Plus

  • Capacity: 60 ounces
  • Weight: 16.1 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.9 x 7.7 x 15.9 inches

Keurig coffee machines are known for sparking debate. Critics mention the low water temperature and the environmental impact of pods. However, there's no denying the convenience of these machines. If you want push-button ease without sacrificing freshly brewed coffee, the K-Duo Plus is worth considering.

As a 2-way coffee maker, the K-Duo Plus allows you to make pod-based coffee with the press of a button or a full carafe of freshly ground coffee if you have more time to spare.

For single-serve coffee, you can use any Keurig K-Cup pods, as well as the offerings from partnering brands like Lavazza, Starbucks, and Green Mountain.

The machine's stainless steel thermal carafe ensures any leftover coffee remains warm for longer. The 60-ounce water reservoir offers flexibility in terms of placement on your kitchen counter.

The carafe side of the K-Duo Plus is highly programmable, allowing you to enjoy fresh coffee on demand without any waiting around. Additionally, the single-serve side is always available as a backup option.

The K-Duo Plus is not only one of the best thermal carafe coffee makers but also one of the most convenient and user-friendly options.

  • Multi-position water tank
  • Use fresh coffee or pods
  • Programmable carafe

Zojirushi Coffee Maker

Zojirushi-Coffee-Maker

  • Capacity: 51 ounces
  • Weight: 9 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.8 x 10.6 x 8 inches

Zojirushi, a well-known brand in the rice cooker industry, brings its expertise to the coffee maker space with this impressive drip coffee maker.

This model is available in both 10-cup and 12-cup sizes, catering to larger families. The carafe, made from highly insulated stainless steel, keeps any leftover coffee warm for hours, making it perfect for those working from home.

The machine comes with a reusable filter, so all you need is your favorite fresh coffee beans. It's recommended to grind the beans just before brewing for the best flavor and aroma.

With a water temperature of 200°F, within the Specialty Coffee Association's (SCA) recommendations, this coffee maker ensures a perfect golden cup of coffee.

Additionally, the Zojirushi coffee maker can be used to make delicious iced coffee. It automatically adjusts the coffee-to-water ratio, resulting in ice-cold coffee that doesn't taste watered down.

Some users have reported issues with messiness, so it's important to do thorough research before purchasing.

Overall, the Zojirushi coffee maker is one of the best thermal carafe options. It combines simplicity with the ability to keep coffee warm for an extended period. For those seeking more variety in their beverages, other flexible models are worth exploring.

  • Reusable permanent filter
  • Optimum water temperature
  • Keeps coffee warm for hours

So Which One Should You Buy?

Our top recommendation, considering the quality and price, is the OXO Brew 8. It's a sturdy and durable coffee maker that looks high-end without the hefty price tag. With the OXO Brew 8, you can consistently brew delicious and precise coffee.

OXO Brew 8

However, if you have a larger budget, our favorite among the options listed is the Breville Precision Brewer. It boasts professional-grade materials and components, along with a wide range of settings, making it effortless to brew an ideal cup of joe. Additionally, the large carafe size is perfect for sharing your excellent coffee with friends!

Mr Coffee Thermal Coffee Maker

Mr-Coffee-Thermal-Coffee-Maker

  • Capacity: 50 ounces
  • Weight: 9.7 pounds
  • Dimensions: 14.3 x 13.1 x 8.7 inches

As we near the end of our selection of the best thermal carafe coffee makers, we have the highly reputable Mr Coffee brand. Mr Coffee offers straightforward coffee machines at affordable prices.

The Mr Coffee Thermal Coffee Maker features a simple button and dial interface, making it user-friendly for everyone.

You can use your favorite freshly ground coffee beans and fill the 50-ounce water reservoir to enjoy drip coffee whenever you desire.

This coffee maker reaches a high temperature of 205°F, ensuring your coffee stays piping hot. It also brews quickly, eliminating the waiting time associated with drip coffee.

If you prefer a stronger brew, you can select the strong brew option, and the brew pause feature allows you to pour a cup of coffee while the carafe is still brewing.

Equipped with a double-walled insulated stainless steel carafe, this machine keeps any leftover coffee warm for hours.

The water filtration system removes impurities, resulting in crisp and clean-tasting coffee.

Overall, the Mr Coffee Thermal Coffee Maker is one of the best inexpensive thermal carafe options available, combining affordability and great performance.

  • Removable water tank and filter
  • Water filtration system
  • Dedicated cleaning cycle

Melitta-Coffee-Maker

  • Capacity: 50 ounces
  • Weight: 3.12 pounds
  • Dimensions: 10.15 x 7 x 7 inches

To complete our review of the best thermal carafe coffee makers, we have a manual model from the well-established brand Melitta. How does this unit compare?

The Melitta coffee maker is perfect for those who need a portable solution for camping, hiking, or RV trips. It doesn't require electricity, allowing you to enjoy fresh coffee on the go.

In addition to the stainless steel carafe, the coffee maker includes a brewing cone and filters, giving you everything you need straight out of the box.

Using the pour-over method, you can make up to 10 small cups of coffee by pouring off-boiling water over the coffee grounds. Despite its simplicity, this method ensures a balanced and evenly extracted coffee without any bitterness.

Some users have mentioned that pouring can be awkward initially, so be prepared for a slight learning curve.

If you want to experience the pour-over method without spending a lot of time or mastering new skills, the Melitta coffee maker is a great alternative to other thermal carafe options. It's also the most portable solution on our list.

  • 10-cup capacity
  • Great extraction
  • Minimal bitterness

FAQs

1) How long does coffee stay warm in a thermal carafe?

The best thermal carafe coffee makers can keep your coffee warm for up to 12 hours. Most decent thermal carafes will maintain the temperature for anywhere from 2 to 6 hours.

2) What is the difference between a thermal carafe and a thermos?

A thermal carafe coffee maker will keep your coffee warm for a few hours, while a thermos ensures that the coffee stays hot all day long.

3) What types of thermal carafe coffee makers are available?

The most popular type of machine in this category is the drip coffee maker. These machines typically brew larger batches of coffee, and the thermal carafe helps maintain the temperature. Drip coffee makers come with various levels of programmability. Additionally, there are dual-brew coffee makers that allow you to make single-serve pod-based coffee or whole carafes of freshly ground coffee, keeping them warm in the thermal carafe. Manual coffee makers are also available for those who need to brew coffee without access to electricity.

4) How should I store my coffee beans?

To keep coffee beans fresh, store them in an airtight container in a cool and dark place. Heat, sunlight, oxygen, and moisture can affect the taste and aroma of coffee beans. It's best to grind the beans just before brewing for optimal results.

5) What is descaling, and why is it important?

Descaling is the process of removing mineral residue that accumulates inside the coffee machine over time. Neglecting to descale the machine can affect the extraction and potentially cause breakdowns. Descaling should be done every couple of months, more frequently for daily use. You can use a descaling agent or a mixture of vinegar and water to run through the brew cycle, followed by multiple cycles with plain water to remove any residual solution.

ESPRO P7 French Press - Double Walled Stainless Steel Insulated Coffee and Tea Maker

  • Dimensions: 6.7 x 10.1 x 3.8 inches
  • Brewing capacity: 32 ounces
  • Descaling indicator: N/A
  • Programmable: N/A

If you're in search of a portable coffee maker that you can use anywhere or if you prefer complete control over the brewing process, the ESPRO P7 French Press is an excellent choice. It doesn't require electricity; all you need is hot water and coffee grounds. After mixing the two, let it sit for four minutes before pressing the plunger. Unlike many French presses, the ESPRO P7 uses dual micro filters to keep the grounds out for a consistently great taste. It can even be used to make tea!

With its double-walled stainless steel construction and insulated lid, the ESPRO P7 can keep your coffee hot for hours. The stainless steel material is shatterproof, ensuring durability. You can choose from 32-ounce and 18-ounce sizes, as well as several colors, including polished stainless steel, Aegean blue, brushed stainless steel, cranberry, matte black, and matte white.

Pros:

  • Doesn't require electricity
  • Durable and easy to use
  • Multiple color options
  • Prevents grounds from entering

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive for a French press

Looking for more coffee-related content? We have a variety of articles covering everything from the best gifts for coffee lovers to tips on creating the perfect at-home coffee setup. We've got you covered for all your caffeine needs!

The Technivorm Moccamaster KBT is another excellent option for those who prefer a relatively compact coffee maker. Standing at approximately 15 inches tall with a footprint of about 11 by 6 inches, it boasts a good thermal carafe and a straightforward interface. One of its standout features is the five-year warranty, which surpasses that of any other coffee maker in our selection. Technivorm brewers, available in a few variants, have garnered a devoted following of fans. The KBT also offers a unique switch on the filter basket, allowing you to customize the steeping time for your coffee. Based on our tests, all of our tasters enjoyed the coffee brewed by the KBT, though it did not surpass the taste of the Bonavita Connoisseur or the 9-cup OXO. However, it does come at a higher price point, around $100 more than our top pick. Keep in mind that it lacks user-friendly features such as the OXO's programmable timer and descaling reminders.

A person using the Breville drip coffee maker. A person using the Breville Precision Brewer. Photo: Michael Hession We had high hopes for the Breville Precision Brewer, a sturdy machine that typically costs around $300. With its multitude of brew settings, this drip coffee maker appeals to craft-coffee enthusiasts. However, we found it challenging to get started—the first step requires inputting the hardness of your water on a scale of 1 to 5 using the included test strip. Even after calibration, it took us over two hours to dial in a decent brew. For those who enjoy tinkering or have specific preferences for their coffee, this machine's range of adjustable settings may be rewarding. You can modify almost everything, from bloom duration to water temperature to flow rate. However, if you simply want to make a good pot of coffee without a steep learning curve, this complex and pricey coffee maker may not be the right choice. Additionally, it is quite noisy. While we appreciate its capabilities, we believe that for most people, a machine of this complexity and price is not necessary.

The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker, despite its clunky appearance, surprised us with its ability to brew delicious coffee. It was the top pick in terms of flavor among the models we tested in 2020, according to expert Chi Sum Ngai. However, we cannot confidently recommend the Ninja due to a couple of issues we encountered. First, our unit had difficulty fully emptying the water tank after each brew, leaving behind approximately half an inch of water, which could lead to mold or mildew growth. Second, we noticed an unusually high number of reviews on both Ninja's website and Amazon reporting that the coffee maker broke within a year of use. Considering its limited one-year warranty and the risk of potential issues, we do not believe it is worth the $200 investment.

The Braun 10-Cup MultiServe Coffee Machine gave us consistently awful-tasting coffee, reminiscent of burnt gas-station coffee. While it shares similar features to the Ninja and other models in terms of settings and brewing options, the subpar coffee it produced overshadowed any potential benefits.

The Zojirushi EC-YTC100XB 10-cup coffee maker brewed coffee at an incredibly slow pace, taking over 15 minutes to make a full pot. Furthermore, following the SCA-approved coffee recipe, we found that no matter how many times we brewed using this machine, the resulting coffee tasted weak. However, this model does excel in one aspect—the carafe, which performed the best in our heat-retention tests.

The Cuisinart CPO-850, similar to our recommendation, the Bonavita Connoisseur, offers a compact footprint but falls short in terms of coffee flavor. We found that the coffee produced by this machine lacked depth and complexity at times, with a papery note in some instances.

The Bonavita BV1900TS, a previous runner-up, is an earlier version of the Bonavita Connoisseur. Our tasters praised its overall flavor and balance, and it brewed a liter of coffee in just over five minutes (including pre-infusion). However, one drawback is that the filter basket sits directly on the carafe, leaving a gap underneath the machine's showerhead, leading to a drafty brew. The carafe also tended to drip and felt clunky to use.

The Brim 8 Cup Pour Over Coffee Maker may seem expensive for what it offers. It lacks programmability, and there is a notable gap between the showerhead and the filter basket, resulting in heat loss during the brew cycle. Additionally, the Chemex-shaped glass carafe can be challenging to handle with one hand, and without a lid, the coffee cools quickly (the hot plate shuts off after 30 minutes).

We also tested several other Bonavita brewers similar to our top pick, the Connoisseur, including the Bonavita Metropolitan BV1901PW. This machine features a lightweight black plastic construction and a glass carafe. However, the coffee it produced did not match the quality of the OXO's results. We believe that most people would prefer a coffee maker with a thermal carafe instead.

Among the "pour-over-style" brewers from Motif that we tested, including the Motif Elements and Motif Essential (a smaller version of the Elements), both models appear to be largely unavailable. The Elements model had a convenient removable water reservoir, but overall, the construction felt subpar. The larger size of the brewer was also a concern, and the coffee it produced lacked dimension and tasted flat. The Essential model, although it takes up less counter space, had similar average brewing results and an equally flimsy interface, without the added benefit of a removable water reservoir.

The Cuisinart Brew Central Coffee Maker DCC-1200, one of the best-selling coffee makers on Amazon, did not impress us with the quality of its coffee. Compared to the $150-plus machines we tested, the coffee it brewed tasted dull.

For coffee aficionados willing to invest in high-end machines, there are various expensive and stylish coffee makers available in limited quantities. Examples include Clive Coffee's Ratio Eight and the Chemex Ottomatic. These machines have sophisticated brewing mechanisms similar to manual pour-over methods, such as pre-infusion and even water distribution. However, it is challenging to identify concrete benefits compared to our top picks, and their availability is also more limited.

For further reading on coffee-related topics, check out these Wirecutter recommendations:

  • The Best French Press After brewing and tasting over 75 pots of coffee, we have determined that the Espro P3 is the best French press for those seeking a bold yet balanced brew.
  • The Best Cold-Brew Coffee Maker After years of testing, we have determined that the OXO Good Grips Cold Brew Coffee Maker is the best option for making smooth, balanced, and delicious cold brew.
  • The Best Espresso Machine for Beginners After conducting over 120 hours of research and testing, we recommend the Breville Bambino Plus as the best espresso machine for beginners.
  • The Best Coffee Grinder After testing coffee grinders since 2015, the Baratza Encore remains our top recommendation for its consistent performance, reliability, and repairability.
  • The Best Electric Kettle Since 2013, the Cuisinart CPK-17 has been our favorite electric kettle due to its speed, accuracy, ease of use, and affordable price.
  • The Best Cheap Coffee Maker Among the coffee makers priced under $100 that we have tested, the Ninja CE251 brews the best-tasting coffee and offers user-friendly features.
  • The Best Gear for Making Pour-Over Coffee After tasting over 150 cups of coffee, we have curated a list of the best gear for making pour-over coffee, including an easy-to-use dripper, a reliable coffee grinder, and a precise scale.
  • The Best Keurig Machine We do not recommend Keurig machines, as they brew expensive coffee that lacks strong flavor. Additionally, these machines often experience issues within the warranty period and have a negative impact on the environment.
  • The Best Nespresso Machine All Nespresso machines produce identical drinks. Our recommended choice, the Essenza Mini, offers a compact design and straightforward functionality without unnecessary extras.
  1. Chi Sum Ngai, CQI Arabica Q Grader and founder of Coffee Project NY, personal interview, February 12, 2020.
  2. Matt Banbury, regional salesperson at Counter Culture Coffee, personal interview, January 24, 2018.
  3. Ryan Ludwig, account manager at Counter Culture Coffee, personal interview, January 24, 2018.
  4. Charles Babinski, co-owner of G&B Coffee and Go Get Em Tiger, phone interview, February 16, 2018.
  5. SCA Certified Home Brewer Program Minimum Certification Requirements (PDF), SCA, March 1, 2018.
  6. Best Coffee Maker (Automatic Drip), Cook's Illustrated, January 1, 2016.
  7. Matt Buchanan, The Best Automatic Coffee Machine, Gizmodo, February 16, 2012.
  8. Humberto Ricardo, owner of Third Rail Coffee, interview, October 1, 2014.
  9. Carlos Morales, barista, interview, October 1, 2014.
  10. Mark Hellweg, founder of Clive Coffee, October 1, 2014.

Marguerite Preston is a senior editor specializing in kitchen gear and appliances at Wirecutter. She has written comprehensive guides on baking equipment, meal kit delivery services, and more. Prior to her role at Wirecutter, she worked as an editor for Eater New York and as a freelance food writer. Her experience working in professional kitchens as a pastry cook in New York has given her valuable insights into the world of coffee and food.

  • A close-up of a person pouring coffee into a coffee cup held by another person.by Wirecutter Staff

    We believe that the OXO Brew 9 Cup Coffee Maker is the easiest way to make great coffee. In addition to our top pick, we also have recommendations for budget options, espresso machines, and more.

  • 3 coffee makers lined up side by side with two mugs of coffee, and small pitcher of cream, and a tablespoon of coffee beans.by Ever Meister and Justin Vassallo

    If you're looking for an affordable option, we recommend the Ninja CE251. It not only brews great-tasting coffee but also offers user-friendly features.

In conclusion, there is a wide range of options available when it comes to choosing the best thermal carafe coffee maker. From the sleek and technologically advanced Keurig K-Café SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker to the reliable and user-friendly Bonavita Connoisseur 8-Cup One-Touch Coffee Maker, there is something for every coffee lover's taste and preference. Whether you prioritize convenience, advanced features, or simply a great cup of coffee, these top picks are sure to satisfy your needs. So, don't settle for mediocre coffee anymore - invest in a thermal carafe coffee maker and enjoy the perfect brew every time.

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