In a rush? Our choice is Ninja CP307 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker.
That makes it tough to choose between them.
In this article, I’ll break down the best Ninja coffee maker and its close rivals. I’ll give you a rundown on each one and tell you what I like and don’t like about them.
Then I’ll give you a quick buying guide to help you make your own decision.
Let’s jump right in!
Top 7 Ninja Coffee Makers
- Ninja CP307 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker (Best Overall)
- Ninja CM401 Specialty Coffee Maker (Best for Specialty Drinks)
- Ninja CFP301 Dual Brew Pro 12-Cup Drip Coffee Maker (Best Do-It-All Machine)
- Ninja CFP201 Dual Brew 12-Cup Drip Coffee Maker (Best for Brewed Coffee)
- Ninja CM407 Specialty Coffee Maker (Best for Keep Carafes Warm)
- Ninja CP301 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker (Best for Cold Brew)
- Ninja CE251 Programmable Coffee Maker (Best Budget Option)
Ninja CP307 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker
It’s not often I get to say that there’s a coffee maker that can do it all.
But I can today!
The Ninja CP307 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker can actually do it all.
Not only does it brew hot carafes of coffee, but also hot tea. And not only does it do hot carafes of tea and coffee, but it also does them cold, which is great when you want an iced coffee.
On top of all of that, this machine features a fold-away milk frother so you can froth milk for making specialty drinks.
Another nice feature is the thermal carafe. That means your coffee or tea stays hot without a warming plate.
You can also choose from many cup sizes. Anything from single cups of tea or coffee up through to full carafes. You can even make a concentrated, espresso-like coffee.
While it’s possible to froth milk, you have to heat it up before you froth it. That’s not ideal. If you prefer lattes to brews, this isn’t a great machine.
- You can brew tea or coffee, and the smart basket knows which one you are brewing
- A specific cold brew setting means you can make cold brew instead of just brewing over ice
- The thermal carafe means your drinks stay hotter for longer than a glass carafe
- Many cup sizes mean you can brew anything from a single cup to a full carafe of tea or coffee
- The frother isn’t great, so if you’re looking for a latte machine, this might not be a great choice
Ninja CM401 Specialty Coffee Maker
This Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is a versatile machine that’s a great option.
You can choose between four brewing styles to match your taste. Classic or rich lets you choose from regular or strong coffee.
You can brew straight over ice for nice iced drinks. Or you can brew a small, concentrated, espresso-like coffee for a specialty brew.
For specialty drinks, this coffee machine has a fold-away milk frother for creating frothed milk. But you have to heat the milk for specialty drinks yourself before frothing. That isn’t great for creating specialty drinks.
And while the coffee itself isn’t really espresso, it gets close enough to be tasty.
The water tank on this Ninja Specialty coffee maker is big and removable. Removable water tanks are a big plus because it makes refilling and cleaning super easy.
The one downside is that this machine isn’t compatible with coffee pods. That means you’ll need to use ground coffee.
That might not be an issue, but if you like the convenience of pods, this machine isn’t for you.
- You get 4 brewing styles, so this coffee machine is super versatile
- You can brew in 6 sizes, which means you can make anything from one cup to a full carafe
- The fold-away frother makes storage easy, but also means you can still make lattes or cappuccinos
- The water tank is removable, which makes cleaning and refilling super easy
- It’s not compatible with coffee pods, so you’ll have to use grounds
- The frother isn’t great, it’s best for occasional use
Ninja CFP301 Dual Brew Pro 12-Cup Drip Coffee Maker
This might be the most advanced machine in Ninja’s lineup. It has so many features it’s hard to pick out the best ones to mention.
It has four brewing styles to choose from: classic, rich, over ice, or specialty. That gives you enough versatility to brew anything from an espresso-like coffee to full carafes of regular strength.
You get a huge and removable water tank, which makes cleaning easy.
On that note, all removable parts are dishwasher-safe. That means cleaning is simple.
It has an independent hot water system for making tea, hot cocoa, or instant soups. The hot water system is separate from the coffee system to prevent contamination.
There’s also a fold-away milk frother for creating milk for lattes.
And, if that wasn’t enough, it’s also compatible with K-Cup pods. That gives you the convenience of brewing coffee pods as well as using grounds.
The only thing to note is that it has so many frills. If you’re looking for a simple coffee maker, this isn’t a great choice.
But if you need versatility, then you should go for it.
- It has 4 brewing styles, so you have a lot of versatility
- The water reservoir is big and multi-positional, making storage and filling easy
- It has a fold-away frother for making specialty drinks like lattes
- It is compatible with K-Cup pods, giving you more convenience
- It has too many frills if you’re only looking for a drip coffee machine
Ninja CFP201 Dual Brew 12-Cup Drip Coffee Maker
This is another high-end Ninja coffee brewer.
It features three brew styles: classic, rich, or iced. That gives you enough versatility to brew cups to most people’s tastes.
You also get the option to brew anything from single cups to full carafes. And, because it’s compatible with K-Cup pods, you get four extra cup sizes when brewing pods.
It has a fold-up platform that reduces splashing when you’re brewing single cups.
The water tank is a huge 60 oz and is removable. That makes cleaning and refilling really easy.
Speaking of cleaning, the machine has a cleaning function to help keep the insides working nicely.
And when you do brew full carafes, there’s a warming function that keeps your coffee warm for up to four hours.
The only downside is that this machine doesn’t have a milk frother. It also doesn’t brew concentrated, espresso-like coffees for specialty drinks.
That said, if you don’t like drinking lattes at home, then this machine is still a great choice.
- It is compatible with grounds or pods, which gives you more versatility
- You can brew in 3 different ways, which is convenient for changing things up
- It brews coffee in 9 different sizes, from small cups to full carafes, which means you can make any size without sacrificing the taste
- The water tank is huge and removable, making refilling and cleaning really easy
- It doesn’t have a milk frother, so if you want specialty drinks, this isn’t the machine for you
Ninja CM407 Specialty Coffee Maker
This is another versatile Ninja coffee brewer. It seems to be a theme.
You get to choose from six different brewing sizes. Anything from single cups to full carafes.
You can also brew small concentrated coffees for specialty drinks like lattes or cappuccinos. And if you want milk, don’t worry, there’s a fold-away milk frother.
The only thing is that the milk frother isn’t great. So if your first use for your machine is for lattes, then this machine probably isn’t the right choice.
But if you like them every now and then, I would totally recommend this Ninja Specialty coffee maker!
The water tank on this machine is big enough for many cups or a couple of carafes before you’ll need to refill.
And when you do need to refill, the water tank is removable. That makes refilling and cleaning really easy.
While this is a versatile machine, it isn’t actually compatible with K-Cup pods. You’ll need to use grounds instead.
But if you don’t use pods anyway, then you don’t need to worry!
- It brews in 6 different sizes, from single cups to full carafes, so you have a lot of versatility without losing good taste
- The fold-away frother means you can brew lattes or cappuccinos
- The thermal carafe means your coffee stays hot and fresh for a long time, you can keep sipping it all morning
- The water tank is removable, which makes cleaning and refilling super simple
- It isn’t compatible with pods, so you’ll have to use grounds
Ninja CP301 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker
This is a Ninja coffee brewer that does it all.
And by all, I mean hot coffee, cold brew coffee, and even teas.
That’s right, you get specific coffee and tea baskets. And the machine knows when you’re brewing coffee or tea and displays those drink options.
When brewing coffee, you choose from five brew styles, from classic to specialty. And six brewing sizes from single cups to full carafes.
There’s a fold-away milk frother that lets you froth milk for lattes or other specialty drinks.
And the water tank is a huge 50 oz and removable. That makes cleaning and refilling your machine super simple.
There are only two downsides: you have to heat the milk before frothing, which isn’t great and makes specialty drinks harder to make.
It also has a glass carafe instead of a thermal one. That means that you can burn your coffee if you let the carafe sit for too long.
- A specific cold brew setting means you can brew cold for your iced coffee
- Brew specifically for tea, it has tea settings programmed for different temperatures and steep times
- Fold-away frother means you can make specialty drinks like lattes or cappuccinos with either hot or cold milk
- You get 6 brew sizes, so you can brew anything from a single cup to a full carafe
- The frother isn’t great, probably best used occasionally
- The glass carafe and warming plate sometimes burn your coffee if it sits for too long
Ninja CE251 Programmable Coffee Maker
The Ninja CE251 Programmable Coffee Maker is simple in the best way.
It’s a carafe brewer at heart. You can brew up to 14-cup carafes with this machine.
But you also get to choose from any brew size up to then. A lot of big carafe machines don’t do well when brewing single cups. But this Ninja machine brews them well.
You have a small-carafe option of 1-4 cups.
Why is this machine programmable? So that you can set your brew up to 24 hours in advance.
That’s ideal for setting up a brew before going to bed. And makes getting up in the morning really convenient.
You also get two brewing styles: classic and rich. That allows you to brew regular strength or a strong coffee drink.
The only thing is that this machine only does brewed coffee. It doesn’t do tea or specialty coffees. There isn’t a milk frother, and it’s not compatible with pods.
It is meant to be a really simple machine. But if you like that, it’s a great choice.
- The simple display is intuitive and easy to use
- The up to 24-hour delay timer allows you to program your brew for when you wake up in the morning
- The 2 brew styles mean you can choose between classic or rich brews
- Brew sizes from single cups to 14-cup carafes give you a huge range to choose from
- It really only does one thing, so if you’re looking for versatility, this isn’t the way to go
Ninja Coffee Makers: What To Look For
If I had to summarize Ninja coffee makers in one word, it would be versatile.
Ninja coffee makers are all able to brew a variety of coffees. From cup sizes to brew types.
But that begs the question: how do you choose between them?
While they are all mightily capable of producing many coffees, how do you separate them?
In this section, I’ll give you a quick buying guide on how to choose the right Ninja coffee maker for you.
What kind of brewing style do you want?
First of all, you need to ask yourself what kind of coffee you drink the most.
And what types of brews do you sometimes like to have?
For example, do you prefer single cups at a time or brewing whole carafes to fill up your travel mug?
If you mostly drink single cups at a time, then you need to look for a Ninja machine that is designed to brew single cups.
Also, if you like the convenience of a coffee pod, then you should look for a Ninja coffee brewer that is pod-compatible.
However, if you like brewing entire carafes to sip on throughout the morning, you need to find a machine that’s more suited to big carafes.
And if you sometimes like carafes and sometimes brew single cups, then look for a machine that does it all.
After all, Ninja machines are super versatile.
IN A NUTSHELL
Decide what your first use is for your machine, then decide what your second use is and find a machine that does both.
Should you get a machine with a milk frother?
The bottom line is that Ninja machines with milk frothers aren’t designed to make the best lattes possible.
That’s for two reasons: first, the “espresso” these machines produce isn’t great.
And second, because the frother itself isn’t very good. It’s like having a handheld frother instead of a steam wand.
Let’s talk about the espresso first.
Ninja coffee maker is not an espresso machine. These machines produce a small, concentrated coffee instead of true espresso. True espresso needs a lot of pressure to create what you’re probably used to seeing in coffee shops.
Ninja machines just aren’t capable of producing that much pressure.
In terms of the frother itself, it just isn’t very good. It doesn’t heat the milk, so you have to warm it up yourself either in a microwave or on the stove.
And second, it’s essentially just a motorized whisk. So it doesn’t give you the silky texture you’re used to when getting a latte from your local shop.
That’s all to say that it’s nice to have if you like specialty drinks every now and then. But I would really not recommend a Ninja coffee machine if your first choice every morning is a latte.
The milk frother is a nice feature for occasional use, but not as a daily latte or cappuccino maker.
What drink options are available?
When looking for a Ninja coffee maker, you need to ask yourself how many different kinds of drinks you want to be able to make.
Are you solely a coffee drinker? Or do you sometimes like brewing tea as well?
Do you like brewed coffee, or do you like specialty drinks every now and then?
Answering those questions will help narrow down your machine options and help you make a decision.
For example, some Ninja machines have tea-specific baskets and programs. If you like brewing tea as much as coffee, then those are great options for you.
But if you only like brewing carafes of coffee at home, then those machines don’t make a whole lot of sense.
And you should instead look for a machine that, well, only brews carafes.
Ninja machines generally fall into one of three categories: do-it-all, carafes, or any coffee.
The do-it-all machines do anything from specialty coffees to teas to cold brews.
The carafes just brew carafes.
And the any-coffee machines brew any coffee, but they don’t brew tea.
Either you want a machine that does it all, or you want something a little more specific. But choosing one style of the machine will help you narrow things down.
Does the machine have any special features?
Some of the Ninja machines are equipped with special features.
These aren’t necessarily things that I would recommend basing your entire choice on. But they are nice to ensure you made the right choice.
Some of the machines have programmable capabilities. Meaning you can program a brew up to 24 hours in advance.
That’s nice for setting a brew up for a busy morning, so you don’t have to waste time.
Some machines have a dedicated hot water system. That’s nice for making hot cocoa or instant soups. Or for using tea bags.
Another thing to consider is the carafe style.
Ninja uses two different carafe styles: glass and thermal.
The machines that have glass carafes also have warming plates to keep your coffee hot while you enjoy cup after cup.
The thermal carafes don’t have a warming plate, but the insulated carafe keeps your coffee warm.
The downside of the glass carafes is that they sometimes burn the bottom of your coffee and make the last few cups taste off.
But if you drink consistently and don’t let them sit for too long, then they do a nice job of keeping your coffee warm.
Personally, prefer thermal carafes. They never burn the bottom of your coffee and actually do a nice job of keeping your coffee warm for quite a while.
However, if you’re not drinking consistently, then your coffee will lose heat as time goes on.
It’s a trade-off you should consider.
Another option is getting a travel thermos. Most Ninja machines can brew straight into a thermos.
IN A NUTSHELL
Don’t make a decision based on special features, but use the special features to confirm your decision. The biggest feature to look out for is the carafe style: glass or thermal.
You might still have a few burning questions about Ninja coffee makers.
I answered a few of the most pressing ones in this section.
How do I clean a Ninja coffee maker?
Some Ninja coffee makers have a cleaning function. You can use that to clean the inner workings of your machine.
Otherwise, running just a carafe or two of water will also do the trick.
As for the removable parts of your machine, they are all dishwasher-safe. That means that you can pop them in the dishwasher to clean them.
Does the Ninja coffee maker grind beans?
No. None of the Ninja coffee makers have integrated grinders.
That said, they all work with pre-ground coffee beans. That means you don’t need to also buy a grinder.
And a few of the Ninja machines are actually compatible with K-Cup pods. So you can use pods instead of coffee grounds.
But I always recommend you look for a great entry-level grinder for your home brewing setup.
Can I get a strong brew with a Ninja?
Yes! Ninja machines come standard with two brewing options: classic and rich brew. The classic option is the normal strength.
Choosing the rich option will brew your coffee a little bit stronger.
My Final Thoughts
My first choice of the best coffee maker is still the Ninja CP307 Hot and Cold Brew Coffee Maker.
It does everything from tea to cold coffee.
It has a milk frother for making specialty drinks. And it has the capability of cold brew.
How many machines on the market has the range that this one does? Not many.
It’s a great option for versatility. You choose from a number of styles and sizes, anything from single cups to full carafes.
And the thermal carafe keeps your drinks hot for a long time without burning the bottom.
Overall it’s a wonderful option for any coffee lover.
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