An espresso machine is a must-have for caffeine enthusiasts. Unlike coffee machines, which are only used for one drink, espresso machines open up a world of possibilities. Machines with built-in milk frothers are more versatile than those without, and a few really stand out.
In this article: Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine, Calphalon Temp iQ Espresso Machine and Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
What is a milk frother?
Milk frothers are used to give milk a foamy consistency. This foamy milk mixture is ideal for cappuccinos, lattes and more. Frothed milk can also be used to create latte art.
Different types of milk frothers can create different textures. Some produce a creamy milk mixture, whereas others make your milk fluffy. Most frothers built into espresso machines use air or steam, but some froth by whisking the milk at high speeds.
How to use a milk frother
Frothing milk increases the liquid’s volume, so if you fill the container too full, you’re likely to make a mess. That’s why you should start by filling a cup only about a third full.
Use cold milk, even if it’s to be used for a hot drink. Cold milk tends to froth better than warm milk, and you’ll have more time to work with it.
Once you have your cold milk in a container, set your espresso machine to its frothing mode. You may need to purge the wand to release built-up water. After purging the water into your drip tray, insert the wand in your milk and press the frothing button.
What to consider when buying an espresso machine with a milk frother
- Ease of use: Even if your primary goal is to find a device with a good milk frother, consider how easy it is to use. Some espresso machines have built-in grinders and other features that keep things simple. On the other hand, those with various manual steps can be difficult to use.
- Ease of cleaning: Machines with all the bells and whistles are nice, but they can be a headache if they’re challenging to clean. Consider one with dishwasher-safe components and self-cleaning cycles.
- Additional features: Machines with built-in grinders and tampers offer enhanced versatility.
Espresso machine FAQ
Q. What are the three types of espresso machines?
A. Most machines are either semi-automatic, automatic or super-automatic.
- Semi-automatic espresso machines use an electric pump to activate the piston, meaning you won’t have to exert as much strength to brew a drink.
- Automatic espresso machines are similar to semi-automatic machines, but they have built-in timers that automatically stop the water flow.
- Super-automatic machines do nearly everything for you, meaning they are the easiest to use and most consistent. Still, these machines tend to be the most expensive.
Q. What is the difference between espresso and coffee?
A. Espresso is thicker and more intense than coffee because you use more grounds and less water. It is often used in lattes, cappuccinos and other caffeinated drinks, although some people prefer it by itself.
Q. Can you froth milk without a milk frother?
A. Yes, but your results may vary. Milk frothers work by agitating the milk. You can achieve a similar effect by stirring it vigorously or pouring it in a jar and shaking it.
Which espresso machine has the best milk frother?
Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine
This consistently produces great espresso and frothed milk. It has a built-in grinder, so you can experience the freshest-possible drinks every time. The frother lets you control the milk’s texture, making it an ideal choice for latte art.
Sold by Amazon
Calphalon Temp iQ Espresso Machine
This easy-to-use machine has multiple temperature settings and produces enough pressure to ensure a flavorful espresso. Most reviewers were impressed with the quality of the steam wand. The large portafilter ensures your grounds get wet enough to maximize flavor extraction.
Mr. Coffee Espresso and Cappuccino Machine
This features an automatic milk frother rather than a steam wand. Most buyers were impressed with the frother, although some said it used too much milk. It’s more affordable than most of its competitors.
Philips 3200 Series Fully Automatic Espresso Machine
This fully automatic espresso machine comes in three configurations, including one with a steam wand and one with an automatic milk frother. It couldn’t be any easier to use. It keeps itself clean and rarely needs to be descaled.
Sold by Amazon
Nespresso Vertuo Next Coffee and Espresso Machine
This compact machine comes with a separate milk frother. It uses pods rather than grounds. Many were impressed with how well the frother works. It takes up less counter space than most.
Sold by Amazon
Other milk frothers worth considering
This is easy to use and has four milk-frothing settings. The exterior stays cool to the touch. It has a sleek design and is available in black and white.
Capresso Froth Max Milk Frother
This features a large-capacity pitcher and three convenient milk-frothing settings. It stays cool while in use. Many of the components are dishwasher-safe.
This convenient hand-held milk frother doesn’t take up much counter space. It froths milk in just around 20 seconds. It’s battery-operated and available in 21 colors.
Ninja Coffee Bar Easy Milk Frother
This manual frother is easy to use and features a microwave- and dishwasher-safe glass beaker. It only takes a few seconds to get frothy milk. It’s quieter than most automatic frothers.
Sold by Amazon and Home Depot
Zulay Executive Series Milk Frother
It’s affordable compared to most other frothers. Additionally, it comes in a stylish box, making it an excellent gift.
Sold by Amazon
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