Finding a good quality coffee machine with a milk frother has not always been an easy task.
For many, many years we were unable to make the kind of delicious drinks that we end up paying a decent amount for in coffee shops. We simply didn’t have the correct equipment in our own homes to make anything that remotely resembled the fancy cappuccinos, lattes, and similar drinks that we were willing to pay a few pounds for in shops.
It wasn’t the coffee itself that we were struggling with, but the milk. The equipment needed to froth milk simply wasn’t available domestically, and the few options that were available were just too expensive for the average consumer.
That problem is now, thankfully, a thing of the past. These days you can have coffee machines with in-built milk frothers that let you be the barista and even some that act as the barista itself. It has never been easier and more accessible to make shop-like coffee in your own home.
Do I need A Milk Frother On My Coffee Machine?
Well, let’s start with the wishy-washy answer – it depends. Do you drink a lot of milky coffees? If you find yourself spending a fortune on coffees when you’re out and about, or wistfully looking down at your coffee first thing in the morning, just wishing it had the flavour and volume of those that you drink in your local shop, then maybe a milk frother is what you’re missing in your life.
Once you have decided that you do need a milk frother, then you have another decision to make – what sort do you need? You could look at a wand, similar to those that your local barista might use, or there are machines that do it all themselves at the touch of a button. Do you want to experiment and master a new skill? Or do you want speed and convenience?
Luckily enough we have taken the time to take a detailed look at the best coffee machines with milk frothers, each offering something different. We are sure you’ll find the perfect one for your home.
Top 6 Coffee Machines With Built In Milk Frother
Let’s take a look at our favourite coffee machines with milk frothers:
Perfect for: the coffee fanatic that is willing to spend time and effort creating their perfect coffee.
We’ll kick things off with the Magnifica – a high-end coffee machine from Italian behemoths De’Longhi. One thing you will notice about this list is that it does feature some of the biggest brands in the industry, so it’s no surprise to see De’Longhi make the cut.
De’Longhi began making household appliances way back in 1902 when they were formed by the De’Longhi family. That family remains prominent in the business over 100 years later, and their product range spans everything from portable heaters to deep fryers. Fitting snugly into their portfolio are coffee machines – espresso, pod, filter; you name it, De’Longhi have made it.
The Magnifica is a bean to cup coffee machine, in my opinion, the premium option when it comes to coffee machines. We talk a lot about freshness on this site, and its importance when it comes to getting the best tasting coffee possible. Well, a bean to cup machine is the best way possible to get the freshest coffee as it grinds the beans immediately before your cup is made. No delay, no transferring, it is, quite literally, bean to cup.
So let’s talk about features: we’ll start with the grinder which is a burr grinder. These are much more effective than the blade grinders that you can get, which can give you an unevenly sized grain. The burr grinders literally crush the beans, which give you more control and uniformity and therefore much better results.
Speaking of control, the whole machine is geared towards getting you your perfect coffee. You can alter the temperature of the water, the size of the grind, how much coffee is added to your drink and the cup size. You are given carte blanche to play around with different settings, and combine these different settings with different beans. With a little bit of effort, you will find your dream combination.
Now we get on to the feature you’re reading this article for – the milk frother. For the Magnifica this comes in the form of a milk wand. Now, this takes a little bit of skill to use so if you have never used one before then it is certainly worth your while to have a quick look at one of the hundreds of Youtube videos that are available online.
It all comes back to control again – the milk frother will give you the opportunity to get the milk just how you want it in terms of heat and density. You can use the wand just to heat or just to froth, or both obviously. I would recommend having a little thermometer with you to begin with to help you reach the right temperature but it won’t be long before you can do it just from the sound that it is making.
As I stated at the top of this review, a bean to cup machine is a premium appliance, and the De’Longhi Magnifica is priced as such as one of the most expensive products on this list. What it offers you, though, is the chance to make genuinely brilliant drinks that are catered to your exact tastes. As such, the price is more than justified.back to menu ↑
Breville One Touch
Perfect for: the coffee lover that wants great drinks, made with one touch of a button
Another kitchen appliance giant now as we look at this offering from Breville. Now, the coffee industry is sometimes mocked for the names of their products, with people suggesting they occasionally come across as a little pretentious. Well, that is not an accusation that could be labelled at Breville here, as they take an ‘exactly what it says on the tin’ approach with their coffee maker – One Touch.
The Australian company was formed in 1932, and Breville is undoubtedly a global household name. Most kitchens in the world will have housed a Breville product at one time or another. They have a long history of being at the forefront of innovation in the industry, made famous by their toasted sandwich maker made in the 1970s. It was no surprise that they were quick to jump into the expanding coffee maker market, and neither was their subsequent success.
It doesn’t take a great deal of insight to work out where the emphasis has been put in the ‘One Touch’. They are aiming to make things as easy as possible for you to make delicious drinks, with the aim being that you can do it with, you guessed it, one touch.
It is essentially an espresso machine – one that is compatible with both ground coffee and ESE pods (Easy Serve Espresso – pods that are specifically designed to fit espresso machines). Traditionally, though, domestic espresso machines have been basically just a smaller version of the ones that you see in coffee shops, whereas this one does not require barista skills whatsoever.
All you need, in fact, is the ability to load the coffee and press a button. It comes loaded with pre-set buttons for espresso, latte, and cappuccino, so all you need to do is select which drink you would like and it will immediately whirr into action.
The milk frother is also automated. Whichever drink you have selected will determine how the milk is prepared, and it will be frothed and added to the drink automatically. All you need to do is wait for it all to pour and then enjoy your drink. It does this expertly, and because it is an automated process, you can be sure you get the same results every single time.
You do get the option of calibrating these three drinks to your exact tastes, and it will remember your preferences so you only need to get this right once. You do have the opportunity to manually froth your milk as well.
In all honesty, though, my guess is that if you do opt for this machine, it is the ease of use that you are after – you won’t be too bothered about doing it all yourself, you just want your drink made quickly and easily.
From a price point of view, it is quite reasonable for a machine with all of these features. It makes really good fresh coffee and is so easy to use.back to menu ↑
Swan Retro Pump
Perfect for: the wannabe barista with a love of everything retro!
Our first British brand now as we take a look at a blast from the past with their Retro Pump. They are very much a traditional British company, with their history dating back to the 1920s where they formed as brass founders. They were the first to develop an electric element that could be immersed in water, which was the pathway to developing kettles, tea urns and coffee percolators.
They are a classic British success story, bringing together the grit and graft from their industrial background and the innovative creation and design that was thriving in early 20th century Britain.
It is the focus on yesteryear that the company is most synonymous with today, and where we find the next coffee machine on our list. The Retro Pump is more than a gentle nod to the 1950s, but at the same time somehow manages to look incredibly modern. It’s also available in 9 (nine!) different colours, so you can definitely find the one that will work best in your kitchen.
It would be wrong of me to focus too much on the aesthetics of this machine though, because while that is a huge selling point, it does detract from what this machine is all about, and that is making great coffee.
It’s a classic espresso machine that you might find in a coffee shop, but on a conveniently small scale. It has everything you need to make great espressos, with the 15 bars of pressure (generally considered to be the optimum for an espresso machine), a decent 1.2L water tank (enough for around 40 espressos), and they even provide you with a ‘professional spoon’ and coffee presser.
Again, it is compatible with coffee grounds and ESE pods – try different types of coffee with it to find your favourite.
What we’re really interested in, though, is the milk frother. You’ll have noticed that this is another wand, which means it’s down to you to operate. This really does give you the full barista experience, and genuinely wouldn’t seem out of place in a small coffee shop. It will cope with any type of milk, and you have full control over the steam so you really can perfect your technique.
The control that this machine gives you over your coffee is what really separates it from the competition – you are basically your own barista and you get to decide on everything from the strength of espresso to the density and temperature of the milk. Your drink, just how you like it.
Then you look at the price – this is the cheapest machine that we are going to look at today, and gives you a truly authentic experience when it comes to making your coffee at home. It also looks great. If you are in the market for an espresso machine, make this your base option and try to find one to beat it.back to menu ↑
Perfect for: the stylish amateur barista
A familiar name now as we head back over to Italy for a look at another De’Longhi coffee machine, this time the Dedica. They have such an extensive range of coffee products that it really isn’t a huge shock to see them appear on this list a couple of times.
This is more of a budget option than the Magnifica that we looked at above. While this is another espresso machine, it does not have an integrated grinder – this is, as you would hope, reflected in the price. It is also a much smaller machine, which probably makes it much more appealing to those with small kitchens or less worktop space to work with.
But enough about what it doesn’t have, let’s focus on what it does offer. The first thing you’ll experience is the Thermoblock heating system – this ensures that your water is heated quickly (there is nothing worse than hanging around for ages in the morning, waiting for your machine to kick into life), and it also makes sure the water you are using is at the optimum temperature for making an espresso. This may seem like a simple feature, but you would be surprised how many coffee machines get this wrong.
This is another machine with the premium level 15 bar pressure, which is great but it requires you to be careful with how you load the coffee – you need to ensure you pack it in evenly so that you get a consistent extraction.
The milk is frothed using a Panarello wand. This is, again, similar to what a barista would use in a high street coffee shop. It offers you the maximum amount of control over your milk, from temperature to controlling the texture (frothy for cappuccino, silky smooth for a flat white). It responds to your actions exactly like you would expect, delivering perfect results.
The key is in the settings – you can switch between the ‘cappuccino’ setting which stretches the milk to alter the texture, and the ‘hot milk’ setting to heat. Before long you will have mastered the entire process, listening out for those tell-tale noises that instruct you to change.
Of course, you will need to know what you are doing in order to make the most of it. As with most of these products, it will either be seen as the best selling point, or the thing to put you off buying it – it will all depend on what you want to get out of your coffee machine, but for those that fancy developing their milk frothing skills, this is an excellent wand to work with.
In terms of price, this is slightly on the lower-medium end of the scale of the coffee machines that we are going to be looking at today, and to be honest, it does pretty much everything you could hope from an espresso machine. If you are interested in frothing your own milk, then this is worth serious consideration.back to menu ↑
Lavazza A Modo Mio
Perfect for: the go-getting coffee lover that needs their coffee right away
We’ll stop over in Italy for our next product, which offers something a little bit different to what we’ve looked at with the previous products on this list – a pod coffee machine. Since 1895, Lavazza have been making coffee and coffee products. To this day, they are still run by the third and fourth generations of the Lavazza family and are now the seventh-largest coffee roasters in the world.
To put it simply; they know what they are doing when it comes to coffee. It is no surprise either, to see them embracing all the modern forms of domestic coffee making – in this instance, pod coffee machines.
Now pod coffee machines are geared towards one major attribute – convenience. They provide anyone with the chance to make exciting, and expensive, coffees without having to know very much at all about coffee. Simply put the pod in and press a button – your coffee will be made in a matter of seconds. You can see the appeal. The Lavazza A Modo Mio is generally considered to be one of the best of the genre – here’s why.
First of all, it’s quick. It takes just 35 seconds from the moment you turn it on to be hot enough to make your drink. From there, it is another short amount of time, although that varies slightly depending on what drink you are making.
It is also incredibly simple to operate – with just 2 buttons to set the machine into action, there is very little that you can get wrong. Simply match the button to whatever type of pod you are using and your coffee will be poured to perfection every single time.
It makes great coffee quickly, and easily – exactly what it is designed to do.
But what of the milk? Surely it gets a little more complicated there? Well, not really. The integrated milk frother enables you to use fresh milk to add to your espressos. I emphasise that you use fresh milk here because, with many other pod coffee machines, you use pods for your milk – while this is a very simple process, you obviously don’t use fresh milk, which affects the taste.
There are three milk settings on the A Modo Mio – hot frothed milk, hot milk and cold frothed milk – each triggered by pressing the single button in different ways. This covers whatever you will need to make whatever coffee drink you fancy. And it all just happens for you as soon as you press the button – just like the pouring of your coffee, the milk will be made to exactly the same standard every single time.
Quick and easy. This machine does everything that you want it to, and is particularly impressive when it comes to speed and ease. It is one of the cheaper products on our list, so if you prioritise convenience, then this could be the one for you.back to menu ↑
Breville Bijou Espresso Machine
Perfect for: the at-home barista that loves to entertain
Back to Australia now as we complete this list of the best coffee machines with milk frothers, with a look at another offering from Breville – the Bijou Espresso Machine. Now, this is a very different product to their ‘One Touch’ that we looked at earlier, even though they are both espresso machines.
First and foremost, they both make an excellent espresso – surely the main requirement of an espresso machine. While this has ‘only’ 15 bars of pressure, as opposed to the 19 that the One Touch offers, you will find that this is more than enough pressure for a domestic espresso machine.
The extraction of coffee is aided by the Pre Infusion feature. Basically, this is a way to get the maximum amount of flavour from the coffee. The hot water, instead of working its way through the coffee in a steady stream, is pulsed, giving each ‘pulse’ the maximum amount of time to extract before sending another one through. The result is a fabulously flavoursome drink at the end of it.
You get a 52mm portafilter with the machine, which is, again, more than big enough for domestic use. It is quite easy to clean as well, and the filter is double-walled, so you can rest assured that you won’t find any grounds in your drink after it is poured.
You get a really good crema as a result of all of this engineering – a beautifully looking espresso, as well as a beautifully tasting one.
The main difference between the Bijou and the One Touch though comes all down to the milk frother. You’ll remember that the One Touch did everything for you, not just in terms of frothing the milk, but all the way down to adding it to the coffee – it’s all taken care of for you.
Well with the Bijou, you get the opportunity to be the barista. The powerful steam wand acts just like one that you would find in your high street coffee shop – it can create wonderfully velvety microfoam for whichever milky drink you prefer. It is relatively easy to use, but as with any milk wand that you come across, you will need to study how to use it before you dive in.
This is an excellent espresso machine, that delivers really good coffee, and gives you everything you need to foam your milk to a really high standard. It’s up to you – how much are you willing to put into making your coffee?
It is priced at the lower end of the scale – considerably lower than the One Touch. This is probably to be expected, as it doesn’t have as many features, but that won’t put off too many people that are more than happy to froth their own milk. This gives them the opportunity for a really good price.
Making milky coffees to enjoy in your own home has never been more attainable, and we are all better off for it. The machines listed above all give you, no matter who you are or what your level of expertise is, the opportunity to drink drinks that you would normally have to go to a coffee shop for and spend a few pounds.
There are a whole host of options available to you, from creating your own barista experience, to just pressing one button and having the entire drink made for you – with fresh coffee and fresh milk.
The best thing about it is that there are products that will do this at every price point – no matter what your budget, you should be able to find a coffee machine that does exactly what you want it to.