Coffee machines are super appliances to have in your kitchen but sometimes they can get a little bit unwieldy and difficult to store, especially if you are tight on counter space. That’s why it’s good to know that there are under cabinet coffee makers too that fit really snugly inside or below your kitchen cabinets, saving you space and still allowing you to make good coffee.
The alternative is to get a smaller coffee making device like a small French press or an Aeropress, but with those, you’ll still need a separate hot water kettle(you could just heat water up on the stove, but it will take a lot longer).
Aside from homes, offices and commercial spaces can also be cramped so an under cabinet coffee maker is useful to have in those cases, too.
Just because you may be tight on space does not mean you can’t have a good coffee maker. However, you will need to sacrifice some things like capacity and brew options, as you can’t always have something that fits a specific location but still has all the features of a bigger machine.
With that said, there’s two dedicated under cabinet coffee makers that we’ll talk about, and a few other models that are pretty tiny and with some clever placement you can use it like an under cabinet machine.
Best Under Cabinet Coffee Makers
1. Black & Decker SpaceMaker SCM2000BD Under Cabinet Coffee Maker
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Black & Decker actually makes a few different variations of this very coffee maker, the SCM1000BD and the SCM850BD. There are not really any major differences between the models aside from the size and the kind of carafe used.
The Black & Decker SCM2000BD we’re looking at here uses a thermal carafe. The machine itself is pretty aesthetically pleasing, with aluminum accents and a sleek design.
It has a spill-free pour button, and it is fully programmable with the digital buttons. The filter basket is reusable, which is a nice touch – you don’t have to keep buying new paper filters.
As we said above, the thermal carafe is a good addition as it helps maintain the temperature of the coffee for a very long time. It’s got a decent capacity, being able to hold 8 cups of coffee.
The carafe is designed in a way that coffee will not spill easily. There is a little “serve” button that you use to open the spout and pour out the coffee.
Like most coffee makers, the SCM2000BD has a built in water reservoir and auto shut off.
However, it’s not all roses when it comes to this under cabinet coffee maker.
Even though it looks great and saves on sometimes tight space, there have been reports of carafes being defective, leaking or not really keeping coffee hot for long enough.
Positives are of course the space saving feature, and it generally brews a decent cup of coffee, provided you’re using good coffee grounds at the correct consistency!
Installation is where it gets a little dicey, unfortunately. You may find that installation is not as straightforward as you expected, and you’ll have to do some modifications to your cabinet bottom to get the machine to fit and mount properly.
There have also been some complaints of leaky carafes, but interestingly enough, that’s actually due to a bit of a design blunder by Black & Decker. The carafe has a maximum capacity of 8 cups, and if you overfill, you’ll naturally be susceptible to leaks. However, the 8 cup mark is about halfway in the carafe – not further up as you would expect! That’s why it’s easy to overfill the carafe if you’re not careful.
If you’re tight on space or you want a decent coffee maker for your RV that still leaves you with valuable counter space, then the SCM2000BD is a definite option to consider. The fact that the carafe clips into the coffee maker will also make it safe from any jerks and bumps during a rough patch of road if you mount it in your RV.
Remember, get this machine if your priority is saving space!
Overall, this is a pretty costly machine and you’ll have to make a decision if the hefty price tag is worth the gained counter space or not.
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2. BrewMatic Built In Coffee Maker
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Although the BrewMatic has not been available for a while, I still decided to include it in this post as it’s a really cool design and perhaps it will become available again soon!
The BrewMatic is a sleeker, more compact coffee maker than even the Black & Decker SCM2000BD. Instead of having a carafe that clips onto the coffee maker, this coffee maker brews directly into a travel mug (or jug).
There’s no water reservoir either, as the coffee maker is directly plumbed. You’ll have to make note of this when you choose a place to install it, as it will need to be close to a water line so you can plumb it.
The compactness of this model just can’t be beaten, I think. Aside from that, it’s pretty standard. Buttons let you control the time and amount of coffee, and hot water will percolate down through the filter into whatever you’re using to catch the coffee.
You don’t have to use a travel mug or jug: if you’re brewing a single cup, you can just place a cup or mug under the machine and that will work just as well. Just make sure you align it correctly, otherwise you’ll have coffee all over your counter!
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Best Space Saving Coffee Makers
The two models above are the only two comparatively reliable models that we were able to find that truly mount under your cabinet.
If you’re looking for something that will save space, here are some of our favorite picks for space saving coffee makers. We’ve listed them here because the underlying need behind an under cabinet coffee maker is essentially space.
So if you don’t like the two options above, you can still get a small profile coffee maker that you can adjust easily even on a tight counter.
1. Brew Express BE-110
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If an under the counter option does not work for you, the next best thing to try is a recessed coffee maker. This kind of coffee maker will fit inside your kitchen wall, saving you quite a bit of countertop real estate in front of the machine that you can use.
A regular coffee machine may end up taking most of the counter space and not leaving much.
The Brew Express BE-110 leaves just around 4 inches of the machine exposed, with the rest inside your wall.
Of course, this means you’ll have to cut a hole in your kitchen wall and you’re pretty much making it permanent. That’s the trade-off for counter space, I guess.
Aside from that, the BE-110 shines as a coffee maker. It is directly plumbed so you don’t need to worry about filling the reservoir(or indeed emptying it). You can adjust the amount of coffee to brew, as well as program it on a timer so you can wake up to a freshly brewed cup of coffee.
The BE-110 is meant to be a kind of permanent addition into your home, so the higher price point is kind of justified, considering that you will expect it to last you for at least a few years.
The manufacturer has rated the machine for thousands of brew cycles so you should not have any issues in that department.
Finally, the main disadvantage of this machine is that it requires a fair bit of DIY just to install the machine. You’ll have to cut a hole in the wall, mount the machine properly, and of course plumb it to your water line.
A good time to pick up this machine is when you’re buying a newly built home or planning to renovate your kitchen.
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2. Nostalgia BSET300AQ Retro Series 3 in 1 Breakfast Station
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Since we’re on the topic of space saving appliances, the Nostalgia BSET300AQ is just brilliant. It’s not a coffee maker per se, but it’s actually a full featured breakfast station that has a coffee maker, a toaster oven, and a griddle.
The coffee maker and toaster oven are used nearly every day for most breakfasts, and the griddle is a good addition for the weekend brunch(or if you’re into skirt steak for breakfast every day!)
This is a really nice space saving option since it combines 3 appliances into a single machine. It doesn’t have the smallest footprint in the world but when you consider the amount of space these three things would take up separately, you end up saving a lot of space.
The griddle is non stick, has a lid for easy cooking, and the griddle and toaster tray can be removed for cleaning.
Compared to some of the other machines that can brew 8 cups, this machine has a bit of a smaller capacity but that’s okay. As it is, most households will brew around 4 cups or less per morning. If you have guests or need more coffee, you’ll have to brew twice.
You can brew up to four cups at a time in the coffee maker, and it brews classic dripped coffee. Remember to use the right kind of beans and grind and you’ll make great coffee every single time.
Finally, the last huge plus point here is the price. For what it costs, you’re effectively getting 3 different appliances!
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3. Chulux Single Serve Coffee Maker
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The Chulux Single Serve Coffee Maker brews coffee really quickly and it’s compatible with Keurig K Cups.
It’s got a super small footprint which makes it ideal for tight spaces. The only disadvantage is that the reservoir is rather small at just 12 ounces, so you’ll have to refill after pretty much every single brew. That’s a small price to pay for the tiny size, though.
Did we mention it’s super budget friendly, too?
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So there you have it. These 5 machines are meant for tight spaces and are good choices only if you’re really prioritizing space over everything else.