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Coffee machine guide

Brew like a barista with our tips, advice and recipe inspiration.

A selection of coffee machines.

Why we love coffee

We're crazy about coffee in the UK and we've been enjoying it for centuries now. Although traditionally a nation of tea drinkers, coffee is quickly becoming the nations new favourite beverage.

Loved the world over for waking you up in the morning, there's also an important social aspect of coffee. The 'coffee break' is commonplace in most workplaces and is often accompanied by a sweet treat too.

The Swedes call this Fika, which essentially means 'coffee and cake break'. And with so many coffee machines to choose from, it's easy to make your own amazing brews at home.

Need some inspiration? Find recipe ideas, brewing tips and coffee machine buying advice below.

    Our guide to the best coffee machine for your home

    Discover the different types of coffee machines and find the one that makes the perfect brew for you. See the different types of machines and the ones that are best for each of your favourite hot drinks.

      Pod coffee machines

      Pod machines couldn’t be easier to use. You simply have to add a capsule with your flavour of choice and the machine will do the rest.

      Best for: Convenience

      Coffee type: Pod

      Milk type: Depends on pod

      One touch recipes: Depends on pod flavour

      Manual milk recipes: No

      Automatic milk recipes: No

      Personalise: No

      Cleaning: Manual

      Filter coffee machine

      In these machines, water passes through a filter which adds flavour and aroma to your brew. Great if you like black coffee and have a little more time to make it.

      Best for: Get togethers and weekends

      Coffee type: Ground

      Milk type: N/a

      One touch recipes: Americano

      Manual milk recipes: No

      Automatic milk recipes: No

      Personalise: No

      Cleaning: Manual

      Coffee pump machine

      Feel like a barista in your own home with a coffee pump machine. Extract all the flavour you’d expect from a coffee shop, without having to leave your kitchen.

      Best for: The barista experience

      Coffee type: Ground or ESE (easy serving espresso) pod

      Milk type: Assisted/Manual frother

      One touch recipes: Espresso, double espresso, americano

      Manual milk recipes: Yes

      Automatic milk recipes: No

      Personalise: Yes

      Cleaning: Descale

      Bean-to-cup machine

      Bean-to-cup machines have a built-in coffee grinder, which turns coffee beans into your favourite brew. Ideal for coffee making enthusiasts.

      Best for: All coffee from black to milky

      Coffee type: Bean or ground

      Milk type: Manual, assisted or automatic options

      One touch recipes: Espresso, double espresso, long coffee, cappuccino, flat white

      Manual milk recipes: Yes

      Automatic milk recipes: Yes

      Personalise: Yes

      Cleaning: Auto rinse and descale, auto milk carafe clean

      Shop by coffee type

      Latte machines

      Milky, frothy and often mistaken for a flat white. A latte has a single shot of espresso, topped with steamed milk and a layer of micro-foam (frothy milk with tiny bubbles).

      Cappuccino machines

      A cappuccino has less milk, but more froth, than a latte. It often comes with a sprinkling of chocolate too, which might have something to do with why it’s so popular.

      Americano machines

      A shot of espresso, infused with water. There’s usually no milk or froth with an americano. Think of it like a diluted espresso that you can enjoy for a little bit longer.

      Espresso machines

      It’s a small shot of espresso. Simple as that. The taste is strong and flavoursome and there's no bells and whistles like other options. The truest coffee experience you can get.

      Coffee machine reviews

      Tried and tested by fellow coffee lovers.

      Shop by brand

      How to make coffee using a traditional machine

      In partnership with De'Longhi and Union Coffee.

      Making an espresso

      Love the full flavour of espresso? Here's how to brew your own cup at home using a traditional coffee machine.

        Creating latte art with steamed milk

        Ever wondered how baristas create latte art? In this quick guide, we’ll show you how to make your own milk foam masterpieces.

          How to make coffee using a bean to cup machine

          In partnership with De'Longhi and Union Coffee.

          Setting up your machine

          Discover how to replicate your favourite coffee shop drinks at home using a bean to cup machine.

            Using the milk settings

            Tips on how to perfectly froth your milk for creating a latte, flat white or cappuccino.

              Barista basics

              Grinding coffee beans

              Use a grinder to crush coffee beans to your desired grind. There are three main types of grind - coarse, medium and fine. Coarser grinds are typically used for French press coffee whereas finer grinds are better for espresso.

              Using a coffee press

              When brewing with a coffee press, it’s best to use a coarser grind. Brew with hot but not boiling water for approximately four minutes, then slowly press the plunger down to separate the ground coffee from your brew.

              Winter warmer recipes

              Brought to you by Nespresso.

                Blond chocolate veinnois.

                Blond chocolate veinnois.

                This one never fails to leave an impression. As if thick, whipped cream floating extravagantly on a 80ml Bianco Leggero isn’t enough, the sprinkling of blond chocolate on top is the encore worth a standing ovation. Bravo!

                1. Extract a 80ml Bianco Leggero in a Lungo view cup.
                2. Get your whipping cream and stir it vigorously to create a thick foam.
                3. Add the whipped cream on top of the coffee. Cut some pieces of blond chocolate Nespresso and display them on the top.
                Sweet popcorn cappuccino

                Sweet popcorn cappuccino

                Turn your coffee moment into a celebrity as you turn the wow factor up to ten with this little delight. Maple syrup, condensed milk and a popcorn finale all help to transform this cappuccino into a showstopper.

                1. First, use your Aeroccine or Barista device to froth 100 ml of 1.5% fat milk.
                2. Put 1 teaspoon of condensed milk in the bottom of a cappuccino cup.
                3. Pour the foam of hot milk into the cappuccino cup and extract 40ml of espresso Chiaro on the top. Display some popcorn directly on the foam. Pour some maple syrup over it.
                  Gingerbread vennois.

                  Gingerbread vennois

                  Oh, doesn’t it look glorious? Sweetened with honey and topped with gingerbread pieces, the striking layers of the coffee and luxuriously whipped cream are reason enough to just stare at it alone.

                  1. Extract a 230ml Bianco Forte in a Vertuo mug.
                  2. Get your whipping cream and stir it vigorously to create a thick foam. Add the whipped cream on top of the coffee.
                  3. Cut or grate some pieces of gingerbread to display on the top and pour some honey on it.

                    Gifts for coffee lovers

                    If you're stuck for present ideas, check out these fab gift-worthy options for the coffee lover in your life!

                      More help and inspiration

                      Coffee machine and coffee pods.

                      Coffee pods

                      You've got the machine, now get the coffee. Visit Sainsbury's and view the full range of coffee products.

                      Tea lovers and tea gifts

                      More of a tea person? Check out our guide to tea gifts, afternoon tea and the essentials for making great cuppa.

                      Baking ingredients.

                      Go get baking

                      Whether you're just starting out or an experienced baker, find everything you need to create a showstopper right here.

                      Why buy at Argos?

                      Are you or someone you know a coffee connoisseur? Well you’ve come to the right place. We’ve put together a special selection of products dedicated to all the self-proclaimed bean experts and caffeine enthusiasts. Whether you prefer the slow grind of bean-to-cup models or the fast brew of a coffee-pod machine, you’ll find the perfect gift to treat yourself or someone who appreciates a quality cup of coffee just like you do.

                      Coffee machines
                      Whether you need a cup of fresh homemade coffee in the morning or a mid-day pick me up in the office, our coffee machines come in different sizes and offer varied functions, so you can have your desired brew whenever you like, just the way you like it. There’s no doubt the coffee lover you’re gifting is already clued up on the latest machines and methods of making coffee so, we’re here to help you pick the right one. Check out our Nespresso machines, widely loved and wildly recommended, you simply cannot go wrong. They’ll feel like a certified barista with one of our stylish coffee machines sat on their kitchen counter top. Choose from compact designs or more traditional café style models for a coffee making experience like no other!

                      Coffee making accessories
                      There’s nothing like a fresh, full-bodied and rich cup of coffee in the morning and if you enjoy a more personal and raw coffee making experience then our coffee grinders are a must-have. Achieve the perfect texture and intensity with our stylish coffee grinders. Enjoy a freshly brewed cup of your favourite coffee bean made precisely how you like it, every time.

                      Coffee cups
                      For such a sophisticated drink, it’s only right that you have an equally glamourous cup for your brew to flow in to. Sip your coffee in style with our glass coffee cups for a modern yet chic drinking experience; pair with one of our beautiful placemats and coasters for a look that’s totally Instagram worthy. Or if you prefer the traditional ceramic feel of a coffee cup in your hands, then our mugs would be the perfect finishing touch to complete your experience. Choose from modern or contemporary mug designs for a minimal touch or traditional patterns for a charming and rustic look. For the coffee lovers that are always on the go, get them a trusty travel mug to keep their drink warm and on hand throughout their busy day.