10 Things a Coffee Maker Can Do—Besides Brew Coffee

Ah, your coffee machine! It’s your daily savior first thing in the morning—because does anything smell better than a fresh-brewed pot of coffee? But the appliance also heats water up to around 200 degrees and is equipped with a hot plate that keeps the coffee at a consistent temperature of about 165 degrees (though some are adjustable), which means you can use it to do much more than brew up a pot of joe. Here are 10 things a coffee maker can do—besides brew coffee. (Just be forewarned that any non-coffee-related use of the machine will probably void your warranty.)

  1. Make Soup

    Coffee pot ramen


    That nearly boiling water and your packet of instant soup are a match made in heaven. (In fact, for a time Keurig even had a soup pod.) But if you’re the from-scratch type, simply combine basic quick-cook or precooked ingredients like tomatoes and rotisserie chicken with herbs in your carafe, then wait for the hot water to flow through. Let the soupy mixture sit for a while to work its magic, then do a taste test, adjust your seasonings, and serve.

    Related: 7 Clever (Unauthorized) Uses for Common Appliances

  2. Warm a Baby Bottle

    Coffee maker bottle


    Are you traveling with an infant who prefers a warm bottle of milk or formula? You can bring a filled baby bottle to an acceptable temperature by brewing a pot of hot water, taking the carafe off the burner, and placing the bottle inside. Remove it from the pot, swirl the contents, and test it every few minutes until the milk has hit the ideal temperature.

    Related: 13 Clever Alternative Ways to Use Coffee Filters

  3. Make Pancakes

    Coffee maker pancake


    As it turns out, that little plate gets just hot enough to fry up a batch of homemade pancakes! First, line the warming plate with foil (to keep it clean), then add a small dollop of pancake batter. When the edges start to look done, flip your flapjack to finish off the other side.

    Related: 10 Gadgets for Every Lazy Cook's Kitchen

  4. Poach Fish

    Poach salmon


    Salmon—and any other fish with a similar texture—cooks nicely in water brought to the almost-boil produced by a coffee maker. Just place a fish fillet into your carafe with a little olive oil and seasonings, then send a few cups of water through the machine. Let the salmon sit in the water for 5 to 10 minutes until it’s cooked through.

    Related: The Tiniest Appliances You Never Knew Existed

  5. Boil Eggs

    Coffee pot eggs


    This one’s so easy you may never go back to hard-boiling eggs on the stovetop! Just fill the tank of the coffee maker, place your eggs in the carafe, and let the hot water run over them. Be sure the water entirely covers the eggs, then let them sit for another 5 to 10 minutes until they're cooked to the desired doneness.

    Related: 10 Unusual Tips for Your Cleanest Kitchen Ever

  6. Bake Mini Cupcakes

    Coffee maker cupcakes


    Pour cake batter into individual cupcake tins (you can make your own using metal measuring cups), put the tins on the burner, and cover them with a pot to trap the heat. In the same amount of time as it would have taken to bake them in the oven, you can make a small batch of tasty mini cupcakes. Try it with other mini baked goods too!

    Related: 11 Totally Unexpected Uses for a Crock-Pot

  7. Melt Chocolate Fondue

    Coffee pot chocolate


    Use that consistent warm heat from the hot plate to melt chocolate and keep it warm for a fondue party! First, warm up your cream in the carafe, add chocolate bits, and stir until you get a good consistency for dipping fruit, marshmallows, and more.

    Related: 21 Brilliant Hacks for an Organized Kitchen

  8. Grill Cheese

    Coffee pot grilled cheese


    Turn your coffee maker's hot plate into a personal panini maker—or at least a grilled cheese machine. Just line the burner with foil, then place your cheese sandwich right on top. Wait until the bread gets toasty, then flip! Once you’ve perfected your grilled cheese, try the technique with a croque-monsieur, a Cuban, or a quesadilla!

    Related: 12 Vintage Kitchen Features We Were Wrong to Abandon

  9. Make Corn on the Cob

    Coffee maker corn


    It’s easy to prepare small batches of this sweet summer veggie in the coffee maker! Just place your ears of corn into the carafe (you'll probably need to cut them down to fit), then run a full tank of water through and let it sit until the corn is cooked, about 10 minutes.

    Related: The Top 8 Ways to Hack Your Grill

  10. Cook Oatmeal

    Coffee maker oatmeal


    Place your oatmeal, cinnamon, and vanilla into the carafe, then run the recommended amount of water through the coffee maker, mixing the warmed water in with the other ingredients. Let the oatmeal cook according to the directions on the package, then dig in!

    Related: 10 Things You Didn't Know Your Microwave Can Do

  11. Hungry?

    Things a coffee maker can do


    So what do you think? Will you be using your coffee maker to whip up dinner any time soon?

  12. See the Kitchen of the Week


    These innovative and beautiful kitchens may inspire your next renovation or redecorating project. Take a look to see the latest images and inspiration.