Waking up in the morning is made better with the best pour over coffee makers. But if you’re not accustomed to brewing your Joe with these unique products, you might wonder how you can find one that’s easy to use and maintains all your favorite flavors. We purchased and tested the top 10 pour over coffee makers to find the best option for you and your coffee-drinking needs.
During our research and testing, we measured specific features like carafe capacity and filter types, but we also wanted to measure more subjective points like the taste of the coffee. After drinking our fair share of coffee (and enjoying the buzz while writing our reviews), we found that the Chemex Classic 10 Cup offers the best brewing experience and best-tasting cup of coffee. With a large, 10-cup carafe capacity and flavor-enhancing design, you’ll be sure to love every cup of coffee you brew with the Chemex. Keep reading to learn more about our top pick and the other coffee makers that made the list.
- 1 Top 5 Best Pour Over Coffee Maker Compared
- 1.1 #1 Chemex Classic 10 Cup – Top Pick/Best Large Capacity
- 1.2 #2 Coffee Gator Pour Over Brewer – Honorable Mention/Best Glass
- 1.3 #3 Bodum Pour Over Coffee Maker – Best Budget/Best 8 Cup
- 1.4 #4 Melitta Pour-Over 10 Cup – Best Value/Best For Keeping Coffee Hot
- 1.5 #5 OXO Brew Pour Over Coffee Dripper – Best Single Cup
- 2 How We Choose the Best Pour Over Coffee Maker
- 3 Why You Should Buy a Pour Over Coffee Maker
- 4 Most Important Features and FAQs
- 5 Mistakes or Things to Avoid
- 6 What Else You Should Think About
Top 5 Best Pour Over Coffee Maker Compared
#1 Chemex Classic 10 Cup – Top Pick/Best Large CapacityWHY WE LIKE IT: Simply put, the Chemex Classic 10 Cup is the best looking pour over coffee maker on our list. But it doesn’t just offer a sleek and classic design; the Chemex is also the largest capacity coffee maker on our list, making it perfect for social gatherings.
If you plan on doing your pour over brewing in bulk, you might want to invest in something like the Chemex Classic 10 Cup instead of a standard spout-on-a-cup system. With a 50 oz carafe made from anti-stain and anti-odor borosilicate glass, this pour over coffee maker can brew up to 10 5-ounce cups of coffee at a time, making this a surefire hit for coffee lovers everywhere. The only downside to having so much coffee is the price this coffee maker comes at, which is the highest price on our list.
We’ve found that the price is well worth it, though, especially considering how well the Chemex enhances the flavor and personality of the coffee bean you chose to brew. There is a bit of a learning curve involved here, especially since the Chemex uses thick, proprietary filters. However, once you get the hang of it, you won’t want to go back to your old coffee maker.
#2 Coffee Gator Pour Over Brewer – Honorable Mention/Best GlassWHY WE LIKE IT: The Coffee Gator Pour Over Brewer is a highly effective coffee maker with a permanent cone filter that makes for quick and easy brewing. If you’re looking for a personal coffee maker that’s easy to use, this is the choice for you.
The Coffee Gator takes simplicity and flavor to the next level with its included stainless steel mesh filter. When you don’t have to deal with disposable filters, you have a quicker overall brewing process without losing any of the flavor and character of the beans you’re brewing. Unfortunately, it can realistically only brew around 2 cups in its smaller carafe, but those 2 cups will be explosions of flavor.
The design of the Coffee Gator is simplistic, but it still includes a handle for easier pouring that prevents you from burning your hands. Unfortunately, the glass carafe is a bit more fragile than we would have liked, so you’ll want to be careful during brewing and pouring. Overall, the Coffee Gator is easy to use, especially with the addition of the stainless steel filter, but you’ll have a bit more upkeep after you’re done brewing since you’ll need to wash the filter by hand after every use, something you don’t need to worry about with disposable filters.
#3 Bodum Pour Over Coffee Maker – Best Budget/Best 8 CupWHY WE LIKE IT: The Bodum Pour Over Coffee Maker is super affordable and high capacity, making it a great choice for coffee lovers on a budget. It features a simple design that’s easy to use with a reusable stainless steel filter.
The Bodum Pour Over Coffee Maker offers the most capacity at the best price. About a third of the price of the Chemex for a little under the same carafe capacity, the Bodum can brew about 8 cups of coffee in a single go. And it opts for a permanent, reusable filter instead of disposable paper filters. This makes brewing easier, but the Bodum’s filter isn’t as durable as other permanent filters we’ve tested, so you might need to replace it sooner than expected.
The entire brewing process is made easy with the permanent filter and overall design, but you’ll need to fish the filter out before you pour the coffee. This normally wouldn’t be a problem, but sometimes it’s tricky to get the Bodum’s filter out for some reason. Regardless, you can brew a ton of really great-tasting coffee with the Bodum without spending a fortune, making this one of the best value pour over coffee makers on our list.
#4 Melitta Pour-Over 10 Cup – Best Value/Best For Keeping Coffee HotWHY WE LIKE IT: The Melitta Pour-Over 10 Cup offers a different design over the other options on our list with a stainless steel carafe that keeps coffee the hottest of any other pick. Add in that it’s more durable than the glass options and its ability to make up to 10 cups of coffee at a time, this pour over coffee maker is a hit.
The Melitta keeps up with the Chemex is sheer coffee-making capacity, with the ability to brew up to 10 cups of coffee in a single batch. It features a durable stainless steel design, which won’t break as easily as the glass carafes we feature on our list. Plus, the stainless steel carafe retains heat longer than the glass carafes, so you can brew more than you need when using this coffee maker.
The overall design is super easy to use, but once you’re done all the different parts can be difficult to clean thoroughly by hand. Fortunately, the filter cone and lid – arguably the parts that get the dirtiest – are dishwasher safe, which alleviates the problem. If you’re looking for a more durable pour over coffee maker, the Melitta 10 Cup brewer is definitely a safe bet.
#5 OXO Brew Pour Over Coffee Dripper – Best Single CupWHY WE LIKE IT: The OXO Brew is a super simple, single use pour over coffee maker that doesn’t need to be babysat, unlike most pour over models. Simple pour in your coffee grounds and water and its automatic drip tank will do the rest for you.
If there’s one downside to pour over coffee, it’s the fact that you usually have to spend the time babysitting it turns out just the way you like it. The OXO Brew eliminates that problem with an auto-drip system that keeps the entire amount of water flowing from the get go. It can accomplish this feat by limiting you to just a single serving of coffee, which is this pour over coffee makers biggest downfall.
Fortunately, the OXO is super easy to use. All you need to do is place the coffee maker directly on top of your favorite mug and let it do its work. And if you need another cup, you can just start the process over without any problem or without needing to wash anything since it uses paper filters. We found that the OXO Brew makes coffee with consistently-good flavor. The overall ease of use, speed and flavor reliability make this an excellent pour over coffee maker for office use.
How We Choose the Best Pour Over Coffee Maker
As the pour over revolution began to pick up steam over the past few years, I, as a coffee drinker of 15 years, decided to get my own setup to see what all the fuss was about. Since then I’ve been pretty obsessed with perfecting the process, buying around $200 worth of equipment since I first started.
I’ve also known and lived with a number of self-professed “coffee nuts”, who would often spend hundreds of dollars on coffee-making equipment just to get the perfect cup of Joe every single time. I’ve used a number of different spouts and kettles during my experimentation, and while my own pour over coffee making setup is modest, I still do what I can to carefully control the temperature of the water using a candy thermometer to ensure that the temperature of my pouring water stands at a perfect 190° throughout the brewing process. I’ve more advanced pour-over systems, such as those made from copper, and also experimented with French press and newer brewers like the AeroPress, which uses pressure and a vacuum seal to create a uniquely hearty cup of coffee every time.
To find the best pour over coffee maker, I considered a number of various factors and features when making my picks, including the material the spout is made of, the shape of the spout/whether it uses grooves inside the cup, the capacity of the carafe (if it has one), the type of filter it uses, and whether or not it comes with any extra features like a washable filter or included kettle. The process of learning how to use a pour over coffee maker isn’t a simple one, which is why it was important to us that the picks we went with have a clear set of instructions packed away inside the box as well.
Read More: Best Coffee Maker With Grinder
Why You Should Buy a Pour Over Coffee Maker
For anyone who by this point might be asking themselves “what is a pour over coffee maker?”, pour over is a new trend in both home and professional coffee brewing techniques that The actual practice of pour over itself is actually quite old, but it’s only recently that both hipster cafes and major chains like Starbucks have embraced the slower, more methodical method of brewing you daily cup of Joe.
Depending on who you ask, these days there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be drinking all your coffee made with the pour over style. Personally I don’t think there’s a huge difference between a freshly brewed cup of coffee from a quality coffee maker and pour over, but pour over ensures you get a fresh cup of coffee every time you go back for another refill, unlike a coffee maker which can quickly grow stale. You also have far more control over the brew style when going the pour over route, which can – if done properly – yield a more consistently flavorful cup that’s great from the first sip to the last.
That said if you don’t have the time to do pour over right, it’s not really worth doing at all. On average you can expect to spend anywhere from 3-5 minutes on the prep for your coffee (grinding the beans, getting your water to the proper temperature), and another 3-5 brewing. 10 minutes may be your entire break depending on where you work, so unless you know you’ll be able to devote the time and focus necessary to getting a flawless cup, a standard drip coffee maker might be the choice for you instead.
Most Important Features and FAQs
- While a ceramic pour over coffee maker won’t necessarily affect the flavor of your coffee any more than a glass one might, things get a bit dodgier once we enter copper/plastic/stainless steel territory.
- The main reason for the different materials comes down to heat retention and dissipation. Ceramic, for example, absorbs and wicks away heat more slowly than copper might.
- The benefit of this is that you don’t risk burning your beans if your pour speed isn’t as trained as it could be. If you’re confident in your abilities though, a metal spout made of copper or stainless steel might be better since the temperature is more easily controlled, but also more fickle to keep consistent.
- If you’re still learning, glass or ceramic should be the choice, while plastic should be avoided altogether (unless cost is a serious issue for you).
- Pour over coffee makers come in two types: those with permanent filters, and others that use standard filters.
- Standard pour over coffee makers will use the same filters as a regular drip coffee maker, while any that have a permanent filter utilize a washable, endless-use filter that never needs to be swapped out or thrown away.
- I have no preference one way or the other, though some say that you can garner a bit more control over the flavor of your coffee by using a standard filter instead of a permanent one.
- If you do go with paper, try and find any filters that are unbleached. These have less of an effect on the environment, and are more biodegradable once they inevitably end up in a landfill.
- There has been a lot of talk lately about the “science” of pour over coffee, with hipsters and scientists from MIT both racing one another to bring the art of coffee into the 21st century.
- Part of this effort is evident in the shape of spouts that we’re seeing come out of the more premium pour over coffee makers, which will use grooves and indents to separate through the silt and make sure the hot water has a perfect path through the grinds every single time.
- Whether or not these small improvements to the spout makes any noticeable difference in the flavor of the coffee itself is still a hotly debated topic, but you’re always encouraged to try both types for yourself to see which suits your pallette best!
Pour Over Coffee Maker vs. French Press
- Last up, there’s the endless debate between pour over coffee and coffee made in a French press.
- Again on a personal note, I prefer the level of control that pour over affords you in comparison to French press, but that said, you can still only really make one cup at a time if you don’t have more than 10 minutes to spare.
- French press coffee tastes nearly as good as pour over, but you can also make about 2-3 cups at the same time instead of just one, depending on the size of the unit you’re using to brew.
Mistakes or Things to Avoid
- Use a Proper Gooseneck Kettle: Even though they may seem a little too expensive upfront, a proper kettle is key when investing in a new pour over setup. We like the Hario 1.2L VKB Kettle, which uses its unique spout design to ensure that you have full, reliable control over your pour no matter what angle you’re approaching the cup from. These kettles are also made from materials that are designed to retain water at a specific temperature over longer periods of time, ensuring you won’t have to live next to the stove to keep reheating your water during the pour process to maintain proper temps.
- Go Stainless to Stay Eco-Friendly: Even with passively-aggressive-themed coffee filters like these on shelves, in the end the best way to save the Earth is to use a permanent filter system, preferably one made out of stainless steel. Other materials do work, but often they stain over time and start to soak through with the flavor of the last 500 cups you brewed after time.
- Don’t Fudge the Details: Although it may be tempting to think you can quickly learn how to brew pour over and power through every cup like a pro in no time, like any skill, creating the perfect cup of coffee through this method takes time and persistence. The grounds will burn if you’re not using a thermometer (190°F is your optimal temperature), will taste bitter if you’re pouring too slow, or won’t be strong enough if you pour too quick. Make sure you’re the kind of person who can hit all these details perfectly every time you want a cup of coffee, especially when you’re still trying to rub eight hours of fresh sleep out of your eyes.
What Else You Should Think About
No matter which best pour over coffee maker you decide to go with, before you start doing anything you should learn how the art of pour over works in the first place. These YouTube tutorials from Portland’s own Stumptown Roasters are a good beginner’s course, featuring the Hario V60 here, and the Chemex here.
Of course, if you’re one of the millions of people who simply don’t have the time or patience to sit around and make sure their water is just below the boiling point to get their caffeine in the morning, we always recommend going with alternative models like the Best Coffee Maker with Grinder 2019, or the Best Drip Coffee Maker for the true traditionalists among us.
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