Dual coffee makers, also known as two-in-one or two-way coffee makers, typically produce full carafes of coffee along with single servings of drip coffee, instant coffee, espresso, and tea. They’re a great solution for households with a variety of coffee preferences.
While choosing the best dual coffee maker might seem like a simple decision, there are actually a number of considerations to weigh. This guide will explore several important features to look for as you shop and then provide choices by category for some of the top products on the market.
- BEST OVERALL: Braun MultiServe Coffee Machine
- RUNNER-UP: Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio Coffee Maker
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Hamilton Beach 2-Way Brewer Coffee Maker
- UPGRADE PICK: Cuisinart SS-20P1 Coffee Center
- BEST FOR TEA: Cuisinart CHW-12P1 12-Cup Programmable Coffeemaker
- BEST FOR ESPRESSO: De’Longhi All-in-One Combination Coffee Maker
- BEST COMPACT: Keurig K-Duo Plus Coffee Maker
- BEST FOR COLD DRINKS: Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Dual Coffee Maker
While it’s easy to assume that all dual coffee makers offer similar performance, several factors affect their functionality, including brew options, size, capacity, carafe type, programmable settings, availability of additional features, and more. Keep reading to learn about several of the most important features to consider when choosing the best dual coffee maker for your kitchen.
Dual coffee makers differ in the types of beverages they produce. Most brew a full carafe of coffee and single-serve coffee, boiling water for hot beverages, and espresso for crafting lattes and cappuccinos. Some models accept coffee pods, while others use ground coffee.
Grind-and-brew coffee makers provided added convenience for those who want freshly ground coffee. When choosing a dual coffee maker with a built-in grinder, look for a model that uses burrs rather than blades. Burrs produce a more consistent grind and generate less heat, so the flavor of the coffee isn’t diminished.
Size and Capacity
As you shop for a dual coffee maker, consider the kitchen’s available space and how much coffee each household member consumes daily.
Coffee maker capacity is measured in cups. Keep in mind that “cup” measurements provided by coffee machine manufacturers don’t necessarily align with the standard unit of measurement. A standard U.S. cup measures 8 ounces, while a “cup” from a coffee maker may only measure 4 to 6 ounces.
Given their multifunctionality, some dual coffee makers are quite large, taking up approximately 1 square foot of counter space.
Coffee makers usually feature either a glass or a thermal carafe, which use different methods to keep coffee warm.
- Glass carafes use a hot plate to keep coffee warm. Though coffee makers featuring glass carafes are generally affordable, coffee can develop a burnt flavor after 20 minutes or so. This makes these models a better choice for those who drink their coffee shortly after it’s finished brewing.
- Thermal carafes typically use insulated stainless steel with a double-walled design that keeps coffee hot for hours without impacting its flavor. They tend to be included with higher-end machines but are a worthwhile upgrade for coffee drinkers who refill their cups throughout the day.
Some dual coffee makers don’t feature a carafe at all and instead pour coffee directly into a mug.
Dual coffee makers generally have a variety of programmable settings.
- Timers are standard on most coffee makers and allow users to set up the machine the night before and program the coffee to start brewing the next morning. Who doesn’t love waking up to freshly brewed coffee?
- Brew strength control lets users customize whether their coffee is mild, medium, or strong.
- Temperature control is useful when making both coffee and tea, permitting users to set a precise water temperature to best suit the specific coffee beans or tea leaves.
Ease of Cleaning
Standard coffee makers typically feature several removable parts which must be cleaned regularly, including the carafe, filter basket, and reusable filter. Dual coffee makers tend to feature even more complex makeups due to their advanced functionality. Look for a model with minimal parts that you can easily assemble and disassemble for cleaning. Those prioritizing ease of cleaning should also consider dual coffee makers with dishwasher-safe parts.
Dual coffee makers offer a variety of additional features.
- Water filters eliminate chlorine, calcium, and other minerals from tap water, preventing unwanted odors and flavors.
- Permanent coffee filters save money and prevent waste.
- Auto shutoff saves energy by automatically powering off the machine after a set amount of time.
- Brew pausing lets you pour a cup of coffee before the brew cycle ends when you can’t wait for that first sip.
- LCD and touch-screen displays can improve ease of use.
Our Top Picks
These top picks take into account the abovementioned features to keep in mind when shopping for the best dual coffee maker, in addition to overall quality and value. Read on to discover some of the top-rated options on the market in a variety of categories for delicious coffee every time.
Braun’s MultiServe Coffee Machine produces pod-free single servings or full carafes of coffee at the perfect temperature using the brand’s TempSensor System. A carafe brews in just 8 minutes—without sacrificing taste. Enjoy tea without waiting for the kettle to boil using the machine’s hot water dispenser.
Use the Brew Choice Plus feature to choose between four settings: light, bold, gold, and over ice. Seven brew sizes—5-ounce, 8-ounce, 12-ounce, 16-ounce, 20-ounce, half carafe, and full carafe—let users make the perfect quantity for their needs. The charcoal water filter ensures the best flavor, while the permanent filter prevents unnecessary waste.
The Hamilton Beach FlexBrew dual coffee maker produces a full carafe of coffee, as well as single servings using pods or coffee grounds. The single-serving side dispenses coffee into a mug or travel cup and is compatible with standard coffee pods. It is also equipped with a reusable filter basket to fill with ground coffee.
On the other side, the 12-cup glass carafe stays warm for 2 hours after the brew cycle is complete, shutting off automatically to conserve energy. It’s pre-programmable, allowing users to wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee. Regular and bold brewing options and a pause-and-serve function provide added versatility.
Dual coffee makers tend to be pricier than standard drip coffee makers. However, this model from Hamilton Beach is incredibly affordable and produces both a 12-cup carafe of coffee and single servings. The single-serve function brews up to 14 ounces of coffee and uses grounds rather than pods. Brew into a mug, travel cup, or the included glass carafe.
The coffee maker features a 24-hour timer, auto shutoff, and brew pausing, letting users grab a cup before the brew cycle is complete. The brew strength selector allows coffee drinkers to choose between regular and bold flavors.
Cuisinart’s dual coffee maker produces a full carafe or a variety of single-cup sizes and features a number of valuable upgrades. One side boasts a 10-cup thermal carafe that keeps coffee warm for hours without impacting its flavor. It also features a gold-tone permanent filter and a charcoal water filter that eliminates chlorine and minerals.
The single-serving side produces 6-ounce, 8-ounce, and 10-ounce cups. While the coffee maker uses disposable pods, it also includes a reusable filter cup to fill with ground coffee. The 24-hour programmability and brew pausing feature provide added convenience, while brew strength control lets users choose between a bold and regular brew.
While most dual coffee makers are geared toward coffee lovers, this model from Cuisinart is an ideal pick for households with both coffee and tea drinkers. One side fills a 12-cup glass carafe while the other produces hot water for tea, instant coffee, instant soup, and hot cocoa.
The coffee maker also includes several additional features like brew pausing, 24-hour programmability, and temperature control. Choose from three colors: black, red, and light gray. A smaller 10-cup version is also available for those with limited counter space.
While a pot of coffee may be fine for weekday mornings, sometimes weekends call for an indulgent latte or cappuccino. De’Longhi’s All-in-One Combination Coffee Maker can brew drip coffee and espresso simultaneously and features a steam wand to froth milk for creamy cafe-style drinks. The micro-foam setting is excellent for making lattes, while the cappuccino setting creates lighter, airier foam.
Dispense 10 cups of drip coffee into the spill-proof glass carafe, and use the 24-hour programmable timer to set the brew cycle in advance. Try the bold setting for a robust, aromatic brew. The machine features a digital touch screen, a charcoal water filter, a gold-tone coffee filter, and a single- and double-shot filter basket.
Dual coffee makers tend to take up a lot of counter space, so they’re not always the best choice for small kitchens. However, the Keurig K-Duo Plus Coffee Maker features a compact design and brews either a single cup or a full 12-cup carafe. Most models use dual-sided brewing, but this one uses a single-brew system. While this does mean the unit can’t make multiple beverage types at once, it does result in a small footprint.
The thermal carafe keeps coffee warm for hours without impacting its flavor, while the pause-and-pour feature lets users grab a cup before the brewing process is complete. Use the strong brew feature for a bolder flavor. For the single-serve function, the machine can brew 6-ounce, 8-ounce, 10-ounce, and 12-ounce cups. It uses both K-cup pods and coffee grounds.
Make either hot or cold coffee and tea using the Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System. This machine actually offers two options for cold beverages. The over-ice function concentrates the brew, ensuring the final drink won’t taste watered down by ice cubes. The cold brew function works in 10 to 15 minutes and operates at a lower temperature to create refreshing cold drinks.
Additionally, the super-rich option produces ultra-concentrated, espresso-like coffee for making specialty drinks like lattes and cappuccinos when combined with frothed milk from the hot and cold frother. Choose from six brew sizes: single cup, XL cup, travel mug, XL travel mug, half carafe, and a full 10-cup thermal carafe.
FAQs About Dual Coffee Makers
Ready to start brewing? Check out the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about dual coffee makers.
Q. What is a dual brew coffee maker?
Dual brew coffee makers vary in their functionality. Most produce a full carafe of drip coffee as well as espresso, single-serve coffee, and boiling water for instant coffee, tea, and cocoa.
Q. Do dual coffee makers come with grinders?
Some dual coffee makers, but not all, feature grinders.
Q. What should I look for when buying a coffee maker?
Look for a coffee maker with a capacity that suits your household’s needs and brews the type of coffee you enjoy most.