Getting your beverage right when waking up, or at a quick command is a luxury we rarely appreciate. Sure you could always pop into a cafe on your way to work, but there are advantages to having your very own coffee maker. You don’t necessarily have to go for a premium or complicated setup. A simple and small 4-cup coffee maker should work great for most people. Getting the best 4 cup coffee maker is a choice that can be beneficial as convenient as well as financially responsible.
Best 4 Cup Coffee Maker — Our Top Choices
- Cuisinart DCC-450BK 4-Cup Coffeemaker
- Black & Decker DCM18S Coffeemaker
- Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker DRX5-RB
- Bonavita One-Touch Coffee Maker BV1500TS
- Capresso 304.01 Steam Pro 4-Cup Espresso & Cappuccino Machine
- Zojirushi EC-DAC50 Zutto 5-Cup Drip Coffeemaker
- Hamilton Beach 48136 Coffee Maker
What A Smart Buyer Should Know About The Best Small Coffee Maker
Utility And Convenience
A drip coffee maker, like the ones on this list, is best in terms of utility and the convenience they offer. They’re faster and easier to operate and don’t require special skills on your part.
All you have to do is turn on the coffee maker. Newer models usually include programmable functions, so you can basically tell the coffee maker when to brew your coffee. All you have to do is chug… how convenient is that?!
Maintenance And Cleaning
Convenience is one of our biggest draws in choosing a four cup coffee maker. Easy maintenance and cleaning play a big part. No point in getting a simple coffee maker that’s a nightmare to clean and maintain.
Any permanent filters should be easy to clean. The same goes for decalcifying/descaling and cleaning the coffee maker. Dishwasher-safe parts are a huge bonus for when you need to deep clean the drip coffee maker.
A programmable coffee maker can make your life easier. Programmable functions add a fair amount of convenience, especially to people on the go. Or for those who would love to wake up to a nice cuppa ready for consumption. You can set the coffee maker to brew at a specific time, for example, at the time you usually leave for work. All you’ll need is to have your to-go cup ready, and grab the freshly brewed coffee as you walk out the door.
Thankfully, the technology is fairly widespread and easily available for most coffee makers, including best budget options. Your choice of coffee maker could very well be a 4 cup programmable coffee maker.
4 Cup Coffee Makers Are Economical
If you love your coffee and buy one on your way to work every day, a drip coffee maker can be a financial bonus. For those who fit that profile, an average simple coffee maker will pay for itself within days. That’s an economic benefit that cannot be ignored.
Auto Pause And Switch Off
Imagine you want a cup of coffee before it is completely done brewing. Auto Pause feature allows you to remove the carafe easily and pour yourself a cup. The machine detects that the carafe has been removed, and stops pouring coffee. That lets you have your drink without the machine making a whole lot of mess by dripping coffee.
Auto switch off function turns the machine off a few minutes after it is done brewing. This keeps the machine energy efficient, so you won’t have to worry about higher electricity/utility bills. It’s also great for programmable coffee makers that are supposed to go into action at set times.
Avoid Bulky Coffee Makers
Space comes at a premium in modern homes, and you probably don’t need one of those massive coffee makers that pour out a dozen cups. If one or two cups is all you need, a simple 4-cup coffee maker should be more than enough for your needs.
A conventional coffee cup is measured as 5 oz. and since most of us prefer a larger cup, a 4-5 cup coffee maker should be just the right choice for most people or couples.
Those who want to keep things sleek can also consider avoiding espresso-style coffee makers. They can be slightly bigger since they come with additional attachments like milk frothers. Of course, if espresso is your drink of choice, by all means, get your favorite machine.
Top 7 Best 4 Cup Coffee Makers
1. Cuisinart 4 Cup Coffee Maker DCC-450BK
My personal favorite, this small drip coffee maker has plenty of features to capture interest, and enough skill to make a good cup of coffee. Cuisinart 4 Cup Coffee Maker has a tiny footprint, which means it takes very little space on the counter and can be stashed for storage with relative ease.
Presence of a steel carafe makes me like it better, and the knuckle guard and no-drip spout are cherries on top of the cake that is the Cuisinart DCC-450BK 4-Cup Coffeemaker. Working together with the auto pause function, the no-drip spout allows you to pour a quick cup even as the coffee is brewing.
It also has an auto shut-down function that turns the machine off automatically if it has stayed idle for 30 minutes. A small LED keeps you informed if the machine is powered. Apart from the conventional black finish, this model is also available as Cuisinart 4 Cup Red Coffee Maker.
Cuisinart DCC-450BK lacks programmable functions, which is its single biggest flaw. It does, however, strive to keep water at a good temperature for brewing and manages a fairly consistent temperature for a good brew.
|Ultra compact design||No programmable functions|
|Auto-pause function||Carafe lid is a bit shallow|
|Stainless steel carafe keeps coffee warmer for longer||Hot plate paint can peel after some use|
2. Black & Decker DCM18S Coffeemaker
One of the more stylish looking small coffee makers, the Black & Decker DCM18S holds special appeal to those of us who like a tall cup of coffee ready to go. Technically a single-serve machine, the Black & Decker DCM18S uses a stainless steel travel mug as its carafe.
The travel mug holds 15 oz. of coffee, which is plenty for those who prefer a tall cup of coffee to-go for their morning commute. The machine has a super compact design that needs very little counter space, making it convenient for smaller apartments. Well, to be honest, it is convenient everywhere, since its target demographic is people who prefer to Brew ‘N Go.
It has an easy to clean permanent filter and automatically shuts down immediately as soon as it is done brewing. The DCM18S is compatible with conventional coffee grounds, as well as pre-packaged soft pods. You can enjoy not just conventional coffee, but the variety of flavors available with soft pods, adding another dimension of usefulness to this machine.
It lacks programmable features, and its insistence on single-serve brewing can be a bit annoying if you intend to brew more than one cup. Overall though, it’s fun and plenty useful for its target demographic.
|Stainless steel travel mug carafe is convenient and keeps coffee hot longer||No programmable functions|
|Compatible with pre-packaged soft pods||Lacks auto pause for brewing|
|Energy saving quick auto shut down||Product lifespan can be unimpressive|
|Ultra compact design|
3. Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker DRX5-RB
Now this is a small coffee maker that has taken the features list to heart. All the way from price to programming, Mr. Coffee DRX5-RB 4-cup coffee maker has you covered. A clearly visible on/off indicator lets you know when the machine is in action.
There is a built-in clock that lets you check the time. Of course, the primary function of this clock is to keep the time so it can brew your coffee at pre-programmed times. Programming Mr. Coffee is easy and you’ll be all set to get your brew at your desired time by following simple steps. It also has auto pause and auto shut down features, so you can grab a quick cup even as the machine is brewing coffee, and it will automatically switch off when no longer in use.
Mr. Coffee pours the brew into a glass carafe so you can watch it fill up. It also includes a “water window” so you can keep track of the amount of water in the reservoir.
All of these features at a great price. What’s the catch, you ask? Well, for one, Mr. Coffee has trouble sustaining the idle temperature for brewing coffee. It’s not uncommon for this price range, but it is worth mentioning anyway. There’s a lot of use of plastic in its construction, so you can expect the coffee to taste a bit weird, at least for the first few cycles. It’s shortcomings may be overlooked as it is the best budget coffee maker with a ton of features.
|Feature rich, and includes most sought-after functions||Has trouble maintaining a good, high brewing temperature|
|Very well priced||Largely plastic construction can affect the taste of coffee for a few brewing cycles|
|Extremely easy to clean|
4. Bonavita One-Touch Coffee Maker BV1500TS
Bonavita One-Touch Coffee Maker BV1500TS is a master in simplicity and minimalist design. It is also a champion of wonderful-tasting coffee. BV1500TS is based on Bonavita’s SCAA certified models. While this smaller coffee maker could not get its hands on the coveted SCAA (Specialty Coffee Association of America) Certification, it does come pretty close.
Designed to be simple to operate and brew great coffee, this coffee maker will impress you with its skills. It has a 100-Watt heater designed to hold the temperature between 195°-205°F, which is perfect for brewing coffee. It does slip from this range a bit but overall manages to stay in range and brew excellent coffee.
The Bonavita is designed to be simple to operate, and it can brew coffee at the touch of a button. It is rated for five cups, so there’s plenty of coffee to share if you prefer. Coffee is sent to a thermal carafe that takes approximately six minutes to fill. The lack of an auto pause function might be a bit of downer, but that’s a small price to pay for good coffee. If taste is your only concern, the Bonavita BV1500TS is the best 4 cup coffee maker 2019 on our list.
Features included on this machine are auto shutdown, easy one-touch operation, and simple cleaning and maintenance. It is more expensive compared to other machines on our list, but comes with an extensive 2-year warranty.
|Easy to operate – one-touch operation makes the machine very simple||Expensive when compared to other products in this category|
|Excellent taste of coffee brewed at the right temperature||Lack of programmable functions and auto-pause|
|Options for steel or glass carafe||The carafe is unimpressive and can cause some coffee to leak|
5. Capresso 304.01 Steam Pro 4-Cup Espresso & Cappuccino Machine
Capresso 304.01 adds a touch of variety in beverages to our list for the best 4 cup coffee maker. Apart from brewing a simple cup of coffee, the frother attachment on this machine makes it useful for espresso and cappuccino as well. Of course, you could always get creative and try your hand at some other, unusual coffee types as well.
Coffee is poured directly into a glass carafe, which can easily be moved to the frother as well. The carafe is dishwasher safe and the machine is easy to clean. The recommended descaling period is every three months, but if you use it often, you should consider descaling earlier. Considering the variety on offer, it is the best small coffee maker 2019 has to offer.
Overall, the brewing is average. However, it’s a great fit if you prefer variety and would like your machine to offer more than just regular coffee.
|Offers variety in beverages, including regular coffee, espresso, and cappuccino||Lacks programmable functions|
|Well priced||Takes more space due to the presence of frother|
|Easy to clean||Suspect longevity – the machine may not last beyond a few months|
6. Zojirushi EC-DAC50 Zutto 5-Cup Drip Coffeemaker
Sporting a somewhat sleek and modern design, the Zojirushi EC-DAC50 Zutto Drip Coffeemaker is an interesting choice. Rated for 5-cups, this drip coffee maker is remarkably easy to clean and takes very little space when compared to cone-type coffee makers.
Its 650 Watt heater makes decent coffee, although it takes its sweet time doing it. You will miss the auto pause function here, though the overall build quality makes up for small shortcomings. The good build quality means this machine can last fairly long with conventional care, so it is a worthwhile investment and notable as one of the best 5 cup coffee maker 2019.
Zojirushi EC-DAC50 uses a glass carafe and a replaceable charcoal water filter. Should you need to replace either, it can be a chore. Though the accessories are easily available, they are sold through the company’s website which isn’t very user-friendly, necessitating some hunting to find the right product.
|Excellent build quality means the machine can last fairly long||Finding replacement accessories can be troublesome and time-consuming|
|Good price for quality||Lack of programmable functions and auto pause|
|Easy to clean and maintain||Extensive use of plastic in construction can give coffee a weird taste|
7. Hamilton Beach 48136 Coffee Maker
Hamilton Beach 48136 is an inexpensive, and value-rich option for a simple drip coffee maker. It’s a very simplistic, no-frills machine that brews coffee while maintaining the bare minimum of features. The machine is rated for 5 cups, though the actual output is quite similar to a 4 cup coffee maker.
It comes with a glass carafe seated upon a non-stick warmer plate to keep your cup of java hot for longer. Both the carafe and brew basket are dishwasher safe, making it easy to clean and maintain. While it lacks any advanced features, the Hamilton does have an auto pause so you can pour yourself a quick cup without waiting for the machine to be finished brewing.
|Inexpensive, and great value for money||Severely lacking in features|
|Compact machine does not require much space||The overall construction leaves much to be desired|
|Easy to clean and maintain|
Conclusion — Getting The Best 4 Cup Coffee Maker
Choosing the best small coffee maker can be a bit challenging, especially given the variety of features available across the segment. Striking the right balance between price, features, and quality of brew will get you to the right choice. A small, 4-6 cup coffee maker is well suited for most requirements. Programmable features can be a great benefit, and when they come at the right price, it can be irresistible. Take a look at the options listed above, and you’ll find something that fits your requirements just right!