The best stovetop percolators are an excellent choice if you want to make your morning coffee at home. It’s a simple device that allows for easy brewing and gives you a lot of control over the process. It doesn’t include any advanced features or requires the use of electricity, so it’s perfect for those who like a more traditional method of brewing coffee or want to use it over a campfire. It’s also easy to clean.
While a stovetop percolator allows you to control everything about the experience, there’s a learning curve associated with using it. Percolators require the user to be hands-on, allowing more experienced coffee makers to manipulate the brew by tweaking any step in the process. This can include anything from the amount and type of grounds to the water temperature and brew time.
Keep reading our buying guide to find out why a stovetop percolator is one of the best coffee makers you can buy.
Top Stovetop Percolators
#1 Primula Today Coffee Maker
Award: TOP PICK
WHY WE LIKE IT: The stay-cool plastic handle won’t conduct heat from the carafe. This means that you’ll be able to handle it without risking a burn. It also provides even heat distribution throughout the brewing process.
- Easy to use design
- Stay-cool plastic handle
- Even heat distribution
- No cup level markings
This compact model can go almost anywhere with you, whether you’re traveling for business or going on a hike with friends. The high-capacity carafe can serve enough coffee for a group. It’s able to make up to 9 cups at a time, depending on the water and coffee grounds you put in it. Unfortunately, there aren’t any cup-level markings on this model. This means that you might have difficulty measuring the right amount of water.
It’s also effortless to use. All you have to do is follow the simple directions provided to you by the brand. The design is made to give even, thorough heat to the carafe during the entire brewing process. This keeps the coffee flavor extraction going smoothly and provides you with a deep, rich cup at the end. It has a matching lid, stay-cool plastic black handle, and a lipped spout. This model will work with electric, ceramic, and gas stovetops.
#2 Presto 02822 Coffee Maker
Award: HONORABLE MENTION
WHY WE LIKE IT: Having a drip-free spout means there’s less mess for you to clean up after you’re done brewing. This model also offers an automatic mode to keep your coffee warm. This is all powered by a 500-watt motor.
- Powered by a 500-watt motor
- Automatic keep-warm mode
- Has a drip-free spout
- Coffee may be weaker
You’ll enjoy the power that the 500-watt motor provides to this coffee percolator. It’s able to brew more efficiently than competing models. It’s also made with stainless steel, which is highly durable and provides excellent longevity to the design. You can brew anywhere from 2 to 6 cups with this model. However, there are reports that this model produces weaker coffee than you might like. If you require a deep, bold taste, you may want to look elsewhere.
There is a ready-to-serve indicator light so that you know the moment it’s done brewing. This makes it a convenient model that won’t keep you guessing. It also has a detachable cord for further convenience, as well as a drip-free spout. This specially designed spout keeps you from making a mess when you pour coffee. That means the clean-up process is far less painful. It’s also effortless to store away when not in use due to the size.
#3 West Bend 54159 Coffee Maker
Award: BEST FOR CONVENIENCE
WHY WE LIKE IT: You’ll enjoy a ready-to-serve indicator light that lets you know when your brew process has completed. This is also a highly durable model because of the long-lasting material it’s made with.
- Ready-to-serve indicator light
- Made out of durable material
- Most parts dishwasher safe
- Might not be that sturdy
There is a huge range in how many cups you can expect from this coffee maker. It will brew anywhere from 2 to 12, making it an excellent option for those who need to serve guests sometimes. You can also use it as your daily go-to for a morning cup of coffee. Some reports say that this isn’t the sturdiest model on the market. If that would be a dealbreaker for you, finding a different coffee maker might be best.
You’ll also enjoy the fact that it keeps your coffee hot. This is because the stainless steel it’s made with is a fantastic conductor of heat. This material is used in the stem, basket, and spreader. There is a coffee level indicator on the handle, as well. You’ll also have a much easier time cleaning up since some parts are dishwasher safe. The cover, stem, and basket are all cleared to go right in the dishwasher.
#4 Coleman 12-Cup Coffee Maker
Award: BEST FOR HIGH CAPACITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: If you need something to go outdoors, this corrosion-resistant model is a perfect fit. It’s built to be lightweight so that you don’t have to worry about it weighing you down. It’s also extremely easy to clean up.
- Easy clean-up design
- Lightweight model
- Resists corrosion
- Might be too bulky
This percolator is a high-capacity option perfect for large groups of people. You can take it into the office, on big camping trips, or while traveling with your family. It can brew up to 12 cups of coffee at a time. Unfortunately, being a high-capacity model is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, it’s perfect for large groups of people. On the other, it’s kind of a bulky option, even if it’s lightweight.
It’s made of stainless steel, which is excellent for conducting heat and staying hygienic. This material also resists corrosion and is super easy to clean up after you’re done brewing. You’ll receive a complete percolator kit with this purchase. It comes with a base, tube, basket, and basket lid, so you have everything you need. It’s a lightweight but durable model that can be taken almost anywhere with you without fear of it breaking.
#5 Farberware 50124 Coffee Maker
Award: BEST FOR DURABILITY
WHY WE LIKE IT: The permanent filter basket removes a ton of the waste that comes with coffee makers. This is also a dishwasher safe model, which eliminates a lot of worry about cleaning up. It’s made of durable, heavy-duty material.
- Heavy duty material
- Dishwasher safe model
- Permanent filter basket
- Glass knob prone to wear
Stainless steel is an excellent option for material since it’s durable and hygienic, and that’s precisely what this percolator is made out of. It has a lovely glass knob, and the carafe is polished to a mirror finish. The handle will stay cool for efficient handling after the brewing cycle. However, you should exercise caution when handling the glass knob on this model. It’s prone to wear, and rough handling could break it off.
It can make a total of eight cups. This is done with a no-mess system, including a permanent filter basket. If you go with this option, you won’t need to empty wet grounds with a fragile paper filter. You can fully immerse this percolator in water for a deep clean or pop it into the dishwasher for a quicker clean. Having different options for cleaning makes it an efficient choice that is perfect for almost any kitchen.
#6 COLETTI Bozeman Coffee Maker
Award: BEST FOR OUTDOOR BREWING
WHY WE LIKE IT: This highly durable option is fantastic for the outdoors. It’s made with 18/8 stainless steel, making it a rugged and hygienic model. There isn’t any aluminum or plastic used in the construction of the design, either.
- No plastic in design
- Highly durable option
- Uses 18/8 stainless steel
- Wood might wear out
You’ll love that this percolator avoids using any plastic or aluminum in its design. This means you will have a durable, lasting coffee brewer that doesn’t break down after a few uses. It sports a handsome hardwood handle that stays cool, so you don’t have to worry about getting burned when picking up the carafe. However, you need to take care of the wooden handle when cleaning. It can dry out and wear down quickly if you get soap and water on it.
The 18/8 stainless steel has a tempered glass top, making it a stylish option that looks equal parts rugged and aesthetically pleasing. This model was made to be taken outside on camping trips. Due to the compact size, you can easily store it away so that it won’t take up much room in your backpack or suitcase. It also uses medical-grade filters. This excellent option ensures no coffee grounds leak into your brew.
Beginner’s Guide to Stovetop Percolators
What is a Stovetop Percolator?
Percolators have been around for centuries, and the design has barely changed in all that time. A stovetop percolator is a simple pot with two chambers (AKA Moka pot). The upper chamber contains a permanent filter basket where you put your coffee grounds, while the lower section is the water chamber. As the water is heated, it’s forced over the grounds through a tube. Then it slowly drips back into the bottom of the pot. That said, if the coffee percolator isn’t working as described above, then you’ll need to do some DIY maintenance or have it repaired.
This design has three significant benefits over other methods like drip coffee makers. First, you don’t need to use a paper filter, so there’s nothing to get in the way of the coffee brews. Second, you can control the brewing process more easily, giving you a better idea of what each cup tastes like while avoiding bitter taste. Finally, it gives you a lot more room to play around with your coffee-making technique, allowing you to perfect your favorite delicious coffee.
In addition to these benefits, it gives you the freedom to choose your own coffee beans and use them when they’re freshly ground. You can use them on gas or electric stoves, and the classic design with compact size is a classy and economical option for those who enjoy the percolation process.
Stovetop Percolators vs Standard Coffee Makers
While it’s easy to take brewing for granted, several benefits come with brewing your coffee using a percolator.
One of the most significant differences between stovetop percolators and standard coffee makers is how quickly they work. Traditional coffee makers need to use filters, which slows down each brewing cycle even further than what you get from a drip coffee maker. For more about coffee machines, learn how a Moka pot works.
With a percolator, the brewing process happens much more quickly. You can make a cup of coffee in under five minutes using a stovetop percolator, which is perfect if you’re brewing for yourself or just one other person. When using a drip coffee maker, it can take up to ten minutes to brew a pot of coffee, and it doesn’t create the enhanced flavor that a stovetop percolator will.
Another key difference between standard coffee makers and percolators is that the latter offers more control over flavor. Because you’re controlling the water temperature and brewing time, you can get your coffee just right no matter what beans or grinds you use. This is ideal for beginners who are still trying to master the art of making coffee at home.
Standard drip coffee makers simply heat water and saturate the coffee grounds without allowing you to control temperature, pre-infusion time, or any other aspect of the brewing cycle.
An electric coffee percolator works by heating water in a pot, which flows through a tube into the coffee grounds. This brewing process repeats itself until the pot is empty. This is more hands-off for the user, but electric models take away customization options that many fans of traditional percolators prefer.
How a Stovetop Percolator Works
The best way to understand how a stovetop percolator works is to think of it as a miniature version of an espresso machine. Just like with an espresso machine, the hot water is forced through the coffee grounds and then drips back out into the bottom of the pot. This creates a much stronger flavor than you’d get from a standard coffee maker.
One of the best things about a stovetop percolator is that you can easily adjust several aspects of the brewing process. To make a stronger flavor, you simply boil more water and set a longer brewing time. On the other hand, if you’re looking for something lighter, all you need to do is pour less hot water into your percolator before brewing.
These are just a few reasons that percolators have been around for decades. If you’re unsure where to start, use a stovetop percolator to make some high-quality coffee at home. It’s also a great travel companion for camping trips.
Why should you buy a Stovetop Percolator?
Stovetop coffee percolators afford you a variety of great ways to make your coffee taste better and learn more about how to make it. It’s a simple device that anyone can learn to use.
Is a Stovetop Percolator Worth Buying?
- They can brew large quantities: If you’re entertaining or have a large family, a stovetop percolator can quickly make enough coffee for everyone.
- They come in different sizes: You can buy a stovetop percolator in any size, so you can find the perfect one for your needs.
- They come in different styles: There are many stovetop percolators, so you can find one in almost any design you want.
- They’re easy to use: Unlike some brewers, a stovetop percolator is very straightforward to use. The learning curve is much smaller than with other coffee makers with many options.
- They don’t require a filter basket: Given the taste benefits associated with stovetop percolators and the rich coffee they make, you might never want to go back to using a filter basket again.
- They’re made of durable materials: Most stovetop percolators are made of stainless steel or other high-quality materials that will last for many years.
Why a Stovetop Percolator May Not Be For You
- They work better for a single brew: If you’re brewing coffee for a large group, then a stovetop percolator might not be the best option. Instead, read about the best smart coffee maker.
- It uses a burner on the stove: Some people would rather have a separate coffee pot, so they don’t have to dedicate a stove burner for the percolator. If you drink coffee every day, your percolator will take up permanent residence, which means you have to move it around when you use your stove for something else. You also have to make sure to get a stovetop coffee maker that will work if you like to use induction cooktops.
How Long Will a Stovetop Percolator Last?
A well-made percolator should last for many years. That being said, you might have to replace the stovetop coffee maker if it’s been exposed to extreme cold or heat. The rubber gaskets, in particular, will wear out more quickly over time than any other part of your stovetop percolator.
However, even if you plan to make coffee every day, a stovetop percolator could last you several years. Replacing gaskets is a small expense that will prolong the life of your stovetop percolator, and it’s worth it over buying a new device. If you only use it occasionally, it could last for a decade or longer.
How to Choose a Stovetop Percolator
When choosing a stovetop percolator, you should consider a few factors, like brewing capacity, material, design, and price.
Best Stovetop Percolator Key Factors
1. Should I consider the brewing capacity?
If you’re looking for a percolator that can brew a large quantity of coffee at once, you should consider a model with a higher brewing capacity. Some percolators can brew up to 12 cups of coffee at once, which is perfect for large groups.
However, if you’re looking for something smaller, a lower-capacity percolator might work better. Some brew up to 3 cups of coffee at once, which can be great for a single serving or only one person who might drink two cups.
2. What material should I choose?
Stovetop percolators are available in a variety of materials, but stainless steel is the most popular. Stainless steel is easy to clean and strong enough to brew coffee for years without breaking down. Many stainless steel percolators are dishwasher safe, making cleanup even easier.
Other materials that are used for percolators include aluminum and ceramic. Aluminum is a popular choice because it is a good conductor of heat, but it can also corrode over time. Ceramic is a durable non-stick material, but it can crack under too much pressure.
3. What should my percolator design be like?
There are so many stovetop percolator designs that it can be tough to find just one you like. Generally, they’re available in coffee pots and traditional teapots, but other designs are also available. If you’re looking for a percolator with a vintage feel, you might want to choose one that is styled like an antique, but it’s also essential to consider the brewing capacity of your percolator.
If you’re looking for something with a modern design, then you might want to choose something sleek and simple. Some designs are available in almost any color, making it easier for you to find the perfect one to fit your kitchen décor.
It’s also important to consider the handle shape because some are more ergonomic than others. The handle has a lot to do with the balance of the percolator and how easy it is to pour. It comes down to personal preference because there are so many different options.
4. Should I worry about the price?
Price is always a consideration for any purchase, and stovetop percolators are no different. Thankfully, they’re available at a variety of prices, so you can find one that fits your budget.
That said, it’s important to remember that you get what you pay for. If you only have a small budget to work with, choosing a decent quality percolator will be key.
If you’re looking for a high-quality percolator that will last for many years, then you might want to consider spending a bit more money. However, there are a lot of affordable percolators that are still made with high-quality materials.
In the end, it comes down to what’s important to you and what you’re looking for in a stovetop percolator. Do your research, compare prices, and read reviews to find the best stovetop percolator for your needs.