Best Nespresso Machine: Top 6 Picks

In a hurry? Our top choice is the Nespresso Vertuo Next!

Nespresso makes a ton of different machines. And it can be hard to pick out which one is right for you.

I spent a ton of time around Nespresso machines when I was working in the specialty coffee world. And I’m going to share my thoughts in this article.

I’ll break down the best ones and give you my pick for the best Nespresso machine.

We’ll go over the basics of each one and then a quick buying guide to help you make a decision.

Let’s get to it!

The Best Nespresso Machine: Our Top 6 Choices

Vertuo Next

The Vertuo Next is the most well-rounded Nespresso coffee maker.

It can do anything from espresso to 18 oz carafes of coffee.

The Vertuo Next is the only Nespresso machine that does carafes of coffee. That means you get to brew pots instead of one mug at a time.

For families or entertaining guests, the Vertuo Next would be my choice. 

Vertuo Next uses Barcode technology. Each Vertuo coffee capsule you use has a barcode on the rim. Your Vertuo Next reads the barcode and adjusts the brewing parameters for the perfect brew.

You don’t have to mess around with settings, simply insert the capsule and let the machine do the work.

The Vertuo Next is Bluetooth connected. You’re able to power on and brew coffee straight from your phone.

There are only two downsides to Vertuo Next.

At 37 oz, the water tank is small, especially for a machine that brews carafes. You’ll end up refilling a lot if you only brew carafes.

The Vertuo Next is best suited for mugs of coffee. It doesn’t produce enough brewing pressure to make true espresso. 

If you’re looking for an espresso-first Nespresso coffee machine, the Vertuo Next probably isn’t the way to go.

Pros

  • The biggest variety of coffees, so you can satisfy everyone’s taste
  • Barcode technology means your machine adjusts the brew to the specific coffee pod
  • Bluetooth connection allows you to brew straight from your phone
  • It’s the only machine that brews carafes, so you can brew pots of coffee instead of one mug at a time

Cons

  • Small water tank for a machine that brews up to 18 oz at a time
  • Not the best espresso machine because of the brewing style
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CitiZ

Nespresso CitiZ is a powerful espresso machine from the OriginalLine.

It has a quick 25-second heat-up time. You won’t stand around waiting for your machine to be ready.

On top of that, it produces 19 bars of pressure so you’ll get perfect espresso every time.

It has programmable settings, including a manual flow stop. That means you can further dial in your espresso to the exact size and taste you want.

After 9 minutes, your CitiZ will automatically shut off, saving power. That function is also programmable.

Nespresso CitiZ is compact relative to other OriginalLine machines. It’s really narrow at just over five inches. You’ll definitely be able to fit it in any kitchen.

The downsides?

It only does espresso. I mean really only does espresso. Single or double, those are your options.

But, if you only drink espresso, then this is a great machine.

The CitiZ only lacks milk drinks. It doesn’t have an integrated milk system, so you’ll have to buy a milk frother.

Pros

  • 19 bars of pressure means you’ll get true espresso every time
  • Manual flow stops so you can further dial in your espresso
  • A programmable power-saving mode so you don’t have to worry about turning it off
  • Quick 25-second heat-up time so you won’t stand around waiting for the machine to be ready

Cons

  • Only does single or double espresso, so your drink options are limited
  • No integrated milk system means you’ll have to froth milk with another appliance
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Lattissima Pro

I’m a big fan of the Lattissima Pro coffee machine. You can think of it like a Clydesdale: strong, reliable, and able to handle a ton of work.

What makes it such a workhorse? All the inside features.

With nine programmed drink recipes, you will always have your drink right at your fingertips.

The fully automatic milk and espresso system make anything from ristretto shots to full-on lattes.

The Lattissima Pro has 19 bars of pressure so you’ll get a tasty espresso.

Two more great features: a lightning-quick 15-second heat-up time and a large 44 oz water tank.

You won’t spend much time waiting for your machine to brew and you won’t have to refill the water reservoir very often.

The downsides?

It only does espresso drinks. If you’re looking for a machine that can brew mugs of coffee, this isn’t the one.

It’s also rather pricey. But that’s relative to other Nespresso machines. For a fully automatic machine, it’s almost a bargain.

Pros

  • Fast 15-second heat-up time so you don’t stand around waiting for the machine to be ready
  • Large 44 oz water tank so you spend less time refilling
  • 9 programmed recipes mean you can make any drink with the touch of a button
  • A fully automatic milk system takes the guesswork out of milk frothing

Cons

  • On the expensive side for a Nespresso coffee machine, so it’s an investment
  • Can’t do mugs of coffee, only espresso, so if you want brewed coffee this isn’t the machine for you
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Essenza Mini

The Essenza Mini is, I think, a great addition to the Nespresso OriginalLine. It’s the smallest Nespresso machine available but still has all the great features of an OriginalLine machine.

Its size makes it a great choice for a small kitchen or anyone working in a tight space.

It has the standard espresso brewing style of the OriginalLine Nespresso machines, meaning you’ll get great espresso every time.

And it comes at a great price. It’s perfect for espresso on a budget.

I’d recommend the Essenza Mini to someone who really only drinks espresso.

If you’re working in a small space and just want a quick shot every morning, the Essenza Mini is perfect for you.

Is there anything bad about the Essenza Mini? Yeah, a few things.

It has a tiny 20 oz water tank. You’ll spend a ton of time refilling the water.

And it doesn’t have a milk system. You’ll need to find another way to get frothed milk if you want a latte or cappuccino.

Pros

  • The super-compact design makes it easy to fit into a small kitchen
  • Has 19 bars of pressure so you’ll get consistently great espresso
  • Budget-friendly, you won’t break the bank for this machine
  • A quick 30-second heat-up time means you won’t stand around waiting for your machine to be ready

Cons

  • A tiny 20 oz water tank means you’ll spend a lot of time refilling the reservoir
  • No milk system so you’ll need another way to froth and texture milk
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Creatista Plus

Let’s say you really like crafting espresso drinks at home. You’re a big fan of pouring your own latte art. You sometimes even have plenty of guests over who like to drink espresso.

The machine that fits each one of those things?

The Creatista Plus.

It has a huge 50 oz water tank so you’ll have plenty of water to make drinks for everyone.

You have a lot of control over your milk texture. You can choose from 11 milk temperatures and 4 textures.

And it brews three different espresso shots: ristretto, espresso, and lungo.

The best part, though? A super-fast 3-second heat-up time.

Yeah, 3 seconds. You won’t even notice the machine heating up before it’s ready to go.

The only downsides to the Creatista Plus are the size and the drink options.

You’ll need to make sure you have enough room to fit this machine in your kitchen.

It also only does espresso drinks. If you drink a lot of brewed coffee, this machine definitely isn’t for you.

Pros

  • Super quick 3-second heat-up time means you’re ready to brew right away
  • 50 oz water tank means you’ll rarely have to worry about the water level
  • 3 espresso options for creating the exact drink you want
  • Automatic milk system with many options so you can dial in your milk to your preferred taste

Cons

  • It’s on the bigger side of Nespresso machines, you’ll need to make sure it fits in your space
  • Doesn’t do brewed coffee, so you’ll only get espresso drinks
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Pixie

The Pixie is another compact OriginalLine machine.

It has a really quick 30-second heat-up time so you can get brewing fast.

Although it’s a powerful little machine, it doesn’t take up much room in your kitchen. It’s pretty compact for how much it contains.

It also has a respectable 24 oz removable water tank. That makes it easy to refill and able to make a handful of drinks in a row. 

It also has a large 11-used-pod container. You’ll spend less time emptying your used Nespresso pod.

Nespresso Pixie coffee machine, though, doesn’t have a milk system. You’ll need to find another way to create latte and cappuccino milk.

And it’s not the most compact machine Nespresso makes, so if the size is really an issue you can find a better option.

Pros

  • Quick 30-second heat-up time means you won’t stand around waiting
  • Full 19 bars of pressure means you’ll get good espresso consistently
  • 24 oz removable water tank is pretty big for such a compact machine
  • 11 used-pod containers so you’ll spend less time removing the used capsule

Cons

  • No milk system, so you’ll need a separate milk frother
  • Not the most compact option in the Nespresso lineup, if space is an issue there’s a better option
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What to Look For When Buying a Nespresso Machine

There are a few big things to consider when buying a Nespresso machine.

Like what will you use it for? What are the different lines Nespresso makes? And what kind of drinks does each one produce?

I’ll answer those questions in this section and give you my concise thoughts at the end of each one.

Original vs VertuoLine

Nespresso machines are broken down into two main camps:

VertuoLine and OriginalLine.

What’s the difference?

Nespresso OriginalLine machines only do espresso. Or at least, that’s what they are intended for.

The Original machines have enough pressure to create a true espresso. They are designed for primarily espresso drinkers or latte lovers.

Does that sound like you? Then go with an OriginalLine machine.

Nespresso VertuoLine was launched later and can do mugs of coffee up to 8 oz. They use a different extraction system that resembles a coffee brewer instead of an espresso machine.

They still make espresso, but they’re just not as good at it as the OriginalLine.

Nespresso VertuoLine machines are primarily for coffee drinkers who sometimes like espresso. If that’s you, go with a Vertuo machine.

Want a deep dive on the Nespresso lines? I actually did an entire article on Nespresso Vertuo vs Original!

Coffee Drink Options

Okay, let’s actually break down the types of drinks you can make with a Nespresso machine.

Original machines make the following: 

  • Ristretto (only a few make ristretto)
  • Espresso
  • Lungo

But don’t let the lack of drinks fool you. The OriginalLine makes phenomenal espresso.

Vertuo machines, on the other hand, have more options:

  • Espresso
  • Double Espresso
  • Gran Lungo
  • Mug
  • Carafe (Only the Vertuo Next)

Here’s the thing about Vertuo espresso, though: they aren’t as good as the OriginalLine machines. Vertuo uses a different extraction method that’s better for brewed coffee.

I would recommend an OriginalLine machine to someone who mostly drinks espresso.

But get a Vertuo machine if you mostly drink regular coffee and sometimes drink espresso.

My opinion: VertuoLine machines have more versatility. If you’re looking for an everyday brewer, go with a machine that has the most drink options.

Size

nespresso coffee makers

The reality is that all Nespresso machines are around the same size.

Compactness was a driving feature of all the machines. They’re all relatively narrow and around 1’ tall.

The biggest thing to consider is the size of your kitchen. 

Do you have a lot of counter space for a slightly larger coffee maker? Are you going to keep your machine in a cabinet when not in use? Do you have a dedicated coffee corner?

Size won’t be a huge issue when buying a Nespresso machine.

Still, make sure to double-check the dimensions of whichever machine you choose to make sure it fits in your space.

Price

There’s no sugar coating in this section:

OriginalLine machines are much more expensive than Vertuo ones. 

Why is that?

Because Original machines are espresso machines.

Think of it like the engine in a car.

One car has a simple engine, the other has a super-charged turbo engine.

Which one costs more?

The super-charged engine will be more expensive.

In this analogy, the OriginalLine machines are super-charged engines. They have the inner workings of espresso machines. Espresso machines need special equipment and powerful components.

The VertuoLine machines don’t require special equipment and, because of that, are generally cheaper.

But don’t be scared off by the cheaper price point. VertuoLine machines are still excellent brewers.

In a nutshell: Go with a VertuoLine machine if you are on a budget. They produce fine espresso and mugs of delicious coffee. The only reason to spend more on an OriginalLine machine is if you drink mostly espresso and have the budget.

Conclusion

I believe the Nespresso Vertuo Next is the best all-around option for anyone who wants a great coffee machine.

It has the most drink options out of the Nespresso lineup. It does everything from espresso to 18 oz carafes. 

The Bluetooth connection allows you to control your machine from your phone.

And the Barcode technology means you’ll get great coffee from whichever Nespresso capsule you use.

With all those features, Vertuo Next isn’t that expensive. For those reasons, it’s my top choice among the best Nespresso machines.

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Craig Carey
Craig spent a year as a barista in Denver's specialty coffee world. He spends his days rock climbing, cycling, drinking espresso, and hanging around the Rocky Mountains. He still lives in Colorado.