Madibarestaurant.com is reader-supported. When you buy via the links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you.

The 9 Best Dual Brew Coffee Makers

Electric-drip-coffee-maker-on-kitchen-makes-coffee

Maybe you have a large family and everyone has different coffee brewing preferences.

Perhaps you’re looking for a coffee machine for an office or another high-demand environment.

The best dual-brew coffee makers are versatile in the extreme, allowing you to use freshly ground coffee beans for drip coffee or pods for single-serve convenience.

While this is the standard configuration for 2-way coffee makers, they come in many different forms, so that’s where you should start your buying decision.

  • Type of 2-way coffee maker: The only requirement for a dual-brew coffee maker is that it allows you to make coffee in more than one way. The default option is a carafe for drip coffee on one side and a pod-based single-serve machine on the other side. Other machines allow you to get hot water on demand for an even wider choice of beverages. Some dual-brew coffee machines also let you make longer creamy coffees or short shots of espresso
  • Glass or thermal carafe: Thermal carafes are generally the best option. These will keep your coffee hotter for longer thanks to first-class insulation, and you won’t waste electricity or require a hot plate to achieve it. Your coffee will not become over-extracted in a thermal carafe either. These are typically made of stainless steel. If you drink a whole carafe of coffee pretty quickly, a glass variant can work well, although it will need handling with care. Overall, a stainless steel thermal carafe is the more rugged and long-lasting option, and it also helps your coffee stay hot for an hour or two
  • Ease of use: The best dual-brew coffee maker should be easy to use, whatever type of coffee you’re making. Look for large and removable water reservoirs, ideally separate tanks for either side. Reusable filters will save you money and reduce your eco footprint without requiring any tedious maintenance. If you are interested in programmable coffee machines, make sure that any models on your shortlist have intuitive interfaces. Overall ease of use can mean the difference between enjoying great coffee daily and leaving your machine unused and gathering dust
  • Customization: Some people are not looking for high levels of customization in dual-brew coffee makers. On the contrary, they are looking for push-button ease and coffee in seconds flat. Others prefer to exercise more control over the brewing process. Luckily, there are 2-way coffee machines catering for both extremes and everything in between. We draw your attention throughout our reviews to the level of customization on offer
  • Form factor: One of the primary benefits of a dual-brew coffee maker is the way it provides two machines rolled into one, theoretically saving you kitchen counter space. That said, some of these machines are reasonably bulky. We review some bigger machines, as well as some much more compact models so there is something for everyone. All you need to do is make sure you have room to accommodate any coffee makers on your shortlist. We break down the dimensions of each machine so you can easily compare them at a glance

Now, if you keep these pointers uppermost in mind, you should have no problem determining whether any of the following dual-brew coffee makers is the right fit for your kitchen.

Dive in!


I. The 9 Best Dual Brew Coffee Makers

1. Our #1 Pick: Hamilton Beach FlexBrew

Hamilton-Beach-FlexBrew-Trio-2-Way-Single-Serve-Coffee-Maker

Features

  • Carafe: Glass
  • Capacity: 12-cup
  • Dimensions: 13.7 x 11.4 x 12.2 inches

First in line and our favorite in today’s bunch of the best dual-brew coffee makers comes from Hamilton Beach.

This company specializes in producing affordable coffee machines in all shapes and styles that don’t force you to compromise on the quality of the coffee in your cup. If you’re looking for a bargain, then, read on.

One side of the FlexBrew allows you to make a whole pot of fresh coffee, using the permanent filter onboard and your favorite ground coffee beans. The glass carafe has a generous 12-cup capacity, so you have more than enough scope to cater for the whole family and guests.

The other side of this machine lets you embrace the speed and convenience of K-Cup pods. Even if you are not the biggest fan of single-serve coffee – and it does have its limitations – it is also nice to enjoy when you want push-button ease and coffee in less than a minute.

Each side of this machine is equipped with a separate water reservoir, increasing your capacity and streamlining operation. Both water tanks are transparent and easy to fill without spilling water everywhere.

You can program this machine to take advantage of fresh coffee when you come downstairs in the morning, or when you walk in from work at night.

Aside from a few gripes about build quality issues impacting lifespan, most user testimony for this dual brew coffee machine is overwhelmingly positive. Even better? It’s one of the cheapest 2-way coffee machines out there, too, so what are you waiting for?

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Use grounds or K-Cup pods
  • Programmable timer
  • Independent water tanks
  • Some complaints about lifespan

2. Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System

Ninja-CP307-Hot-and-Cold-Brewed-System

Features

  • Carafe: Thermal
  • Capacity: 10-cup
  • Dimensions: 11.8 x 10 x 15 inches

Ninja serves up the Hot and Cold Brewed System, one of the most versatile and effective coffee machines in their deep product bench. What do you get for your money, then?

Well, you can access a wide menu of drinks here, including both coffee and tea. The smart basket recognizes what you’re using and displays the relevant options.

You get great choice when it comes to brew styles (5) and brew sizes (6), meaning everyone in the family can enjoy their preferred beverages on demand.

If you like the idea of cold brew coffee but you don’t want to wait around for 24 hours while it brews, get the next best thing in just 10 minutes with the Ninja. Enjoy your cold coffee strong rather than diluted as in traditional iced coffee.

Brewing directly into the cup, you can use fresh coffee or tea to suit and then benefit from exceptional drinks with push-button ease, not to mention a wealth of choice.

With a 10-cup carafe providing you with coffee for the whole family in the mornings, this is a versatile and extremely impressive machine, and one of the best dual-brew coffee makers in a crowded field.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Brew coffee or tea
  • Enjoy hot and cold drinks
  • Accelerated cold brew
  • Quality control concerns

3. Cuisinart Coffee Center

Cuisinart-SS-20P1-Coffee-Center-10-Cup-Thermal-Single

Features

  • Carafe: Thermal
  • Capacity: 10-cup
  • Dimensions: 10.75 x 12.75 x 16.5 inches

The Cuisinart Coffee Center is a space-saving 2-way coffee maker to grace any kitchen counter without dominating.

Although there is rather a lot of plastic, build quality is solid, and the lightweight, slimline machine is ideal for cramped kitchens, apartments, or dorm rooms. Also, you get the peace of mind of knowing that all plastic is BPA-free, so while it might not look great, it won’t pose you any health risks.

On the left-hand side of this unit, you get a thermal carafe, perfect for keeping your coffee hotter for longer once it’s brewed. This has a 10-cup capacity, making the machine a neat fit for larger families.

This side of the machine is fully programmable, so shortcut the waiting period and enjoy fresh coffee the moment you want it. Auto shut-off ensures there are no nasty accidents. If you’re making a pot of coffee and you’re impatient for a shot of caffeine, hit brew pause and grab some to tide you over.

On the right-hand side of the Cuisinart, you enjoy single-serve convenience and the ability to use any K-Cup pod. Get tasty and gourmet coffee at the push of a button in less a minute when you feel the need.

The removable drip tray is a bonus if you need to fill up your tall travel mug for your morning commute.

Despite a few gripes about reliability, this 2-way coffee machine is still worth a place on your shortlist.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Compact form factor
  • Multiple K-cup sizes
  • Bold coffee on demand
  • Reliability issues reported

4. Keurig K-Duo Coffee Maker

Keurig-K-Duo-Coffee-Maker,-Single-Serve-and-12

Features

  • Carafe: Glass
  • Capacity: 12-cup
  • Dimensions: 15 x 14 x 16 inches

Keurig is one of the two main players in the single-serve coffee space. Along with Nespresso, they completely dominate this vertical. It’s no surprise, then, they offer a model offering more than just pod-based coffee, and one example comes in the form of the K-Duo.

The left-hand side of this unit provides you with a 12-cup glass carafe and a heating plate to ensure that freshly brewed coffee remains piping hot for as long as possible.

Choose to brew 6, 8, 10, or 12 cups in the carafe depending on how many you’re catering for, and minimize refilling in between thanks to the 60oz water tank.

This water reservoir is removable to make cleaning and refilling easier.

You should be aware that to use the carafe, you’ll need to pick up the proprietary gold tone mesh filter. This is not bundled with the K-Duo.

Hit brew pause for a cuppa as the carafe brews or use the other side of the machine if you want even quicker delivery.

As with all Keurig single-serve machines, choose from any of the hundreds of K-Cup pods glutting the market. In addition to a robust range from Keurig, many other brands offers these pods, including favorites like Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts.

The bold setting lets you make your coffee even more intense at the push of a button, just one more reason to consider this contender for best dual-brew coffee maker.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Mid-brew pause
  • Multiple brew sizes
  • Lengthy power cord
  • Struggles to brew full pot

5. Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker

Ninja-CM407-Specialty-Coffee-Maker,-with-50-oz.-Thermal-Carafe,-Black-and-Stainless-Steel-Finish

Features

  • Carafe: Thermal
  • Capacity: 50oz
  • Dimensions: 12 x 8.75 x 15 inches

Ninja are best known for their world-beating vacuums, but they also make some surprisingly good coffee machines.

Versatility is the key selling point here. You can make an intensely rich and concentrated coffee to use as the base for longer and creamier drinks. You’ll also be free to enjoy a classic or rich brew when you’re in the mood for regular drip coffee. An additional setting lets you enjoy your coffee over ice without any dilution.

This machine comes with a choice of thermal or glass carafe. With this stainless steel thermal iteration, durability is uppermost, and you’ll also keep your coffee warm for hours.

When you’re in the mood for specialty coffee, brew some of the concentrated coffee to use as the foundation and then create the latte, cappuccino, or latte you crave.

From a design standpoint, this machine is not the best. There is quite a lot of plastic on display, and the overall build feels slightly flimsy.

Since you’ll be using freshly ground coffee in this machine rather than pods or capsules, you’ll be getting a cost-effective solution for making coffee at home, and you’ll also enjoy gourmet quality with push-button ease. What more could you ask for?

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Makes wide variety of drinks
  • Use freshly ground coffee beans
  • Great iced coffee concentrate
  • Design is disappointing

6. Cuisinart 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker

Cuisinart-CHW-12P1-12-Cup-Programmable-Coffeemaker

Features

  • Carafe: Glass
  • Capacity: 12-cup
  • Dimensions: 10.25 x 9.5 x 14.3 inches

As we near the end of our quest for the best dual-brew coffee makers, we have another entry from Cuisinart. How does this model stand and fall, then?

Well, the first thing that strikes you is the design. Finished in stainless steel, you get a much chunkier and more solid coffee machine than much of the competition in this class.

Beyond this, you also get a compact unit that makes a smooth fit for crowded kitchen counters.

Fortunately, it’s not a case of form over function either. On one side of the Cuisinart comes a 12-cup glass carafe, in contrast to the 10-cup thermal carafe on the model we review above.

The carafe side of the machine is fully programmable and you can tweak the heat of the hot plate (low, medium, or high) to keep any leftover coffee warmed to your liking.

With hot water on demand, you can widen your drinks menu to include tea and other infusions. You could even use the Cuisinart to whip up some oatmeal in the morning if you want something more substantial than coffee to start your day.

The only real complaint we could find in a sea of positive user reviews concerns the difficult of topping up the water tank. Setting this aside, you’re in safe hands with this multipurpose Cuisinart coffee maker.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Sleek aesthetics
  • Various colorways
  • Hot water on demand
  • Awkward to fill water reservoir

7. Keurig K-Cafe

Keurig-K-Cafe-Single-Serve-K-Cup-Coffee-Maker

Features

  • Carafe: No carafe
  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Dimensions: 12.5 x 15.3 x 11.7 inches

We have time for another Keurig before we round out today, and it comes in the form of the K-Café.

This model differs from the others on our shortlist today in that you get no carafe included here. That said, this machine still qualifies as one of the best dual-brew coffee makers for the way it makes cappuccino and latte as well as freshly brewed coffee.

As with all Keurig coffee makers, the key draw here is the pod-based convenience. You need no special skills and less than a minute to enjoy tasty coffee.

Use any of the 400+ K-Cup pods to suit the tastes of you, your family, and any guests.

To make longer, creamier coffees, use the manual milk frother onboard. Create perfectly textured foam and steamed milk for your latte, cappuccino, or macchiato and enjoy barista-grade coffee at home.

The water tank gives you enough for 6 cups before it needs topping up, something that could be improved. On the flip side, you benefit in terms of form factor.

As with many of the best dual-brew coffee makers, you’ll need to purchase a filter to take advantage of brewed coffee on demand.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Make coffee, cappuccino, and latte
  • Pod-based simplicity
  • Substantial water tank
  • You get no carafe bundled

8. Keurig K-Duo

Keurig-K-Duo-Plus-Coffee-Maker,-Single-Serve-and-12-Cup-Carafe-Drip-Coffee-Brewer

Features

  • Carafe: Thermal
  • Capacity: 60oz
  • Dimensions: 14.2 x 8.2 x 11.7 inches

Keurig is the brand that made single-serve coffee famous the world over. The K-Duo is one of the most popular machines in their wide line, so how does it stand out?

The main differentiating factor between this and most other Keurig machines is the fact you can choose between both K-Cup pods and freshly ground coffee. Why choose between gourmet ground coffee and single-serve when you can have both?

The 60oz water tank means you won’t need to be continually topping this thing up. Choose whether to add your favorite pod or some ground coffee depending on your mood.

The single-serve side ensures you get tasty coffee in less than a minute with no waste and no hassle.

When you’re looking to make a carafe of drip coffee, on the other hand, you’ll need to wait for 5 minutes or more as the aromatic coffee drips into the thermal carafe. The stainless steel unit will accommodate up to 12 cups of joe, perfect for the whole family.

A strong brew setting is ideal for anyone who likes more body to their coffee, and if you get impatient as the coffee is brewing, hit pause and grab yourself a quick cup mid-cycle.

Overall, this is one of our favorite dual brew coffee makers. Coming from the Keurig stable, you’ll benefit from first-class customer care, too.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Single-serve convenience
  • Also makes full carafe of drip coffee
  • Programmable through 24 hours
  • Reliability issues reported

9. DeLonghi Pump Espresso and Drip Coffee Machine

DeLonghi-BCO430-Combination-Pump-Espresso

Features

  • Carafe: Glass
  • Capacity: 10-cup
  • Dimensions: 14.5 x 11 x 12.8 inches

DeLonghi produce a wide assortment of outstanding coffee and espresso machines, and this model rolls both of these into one.

Choose from a black or silver machine and opt for the coffee machine only or one with a milk frothing jug bundled.

The machine is front-loading which widens your options when it comes to placement, and also ensures that using the DeLonghi couldn’t be simpler.

When you’re in the mood for fresh drip coffee, always grind your beans right before brewing for maximum freshness. Load them into the machine and then sit back as the 10-cup glass carafe fills up with deliciously and full-bodied coffee to start your day the right way.

At just 40oz, the water reservoir could be larger, so you may need to fill it more frequently than you would like.

Unlike most dual-brew coffee makers, this model comes with a permanent filter bundled, saving you money and allowing you to get going right out the box.

Aside from a handful of gripes about customer service issues, this is one of the best dual-brew coffee makers out there, so why not give it a try?

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Front-loading machine
  • Super-simple to use
  • Removable water tank
  • Customer service concerns

II. FAQs

1) What is the best option for a carafe on a dual-brew coffee maker?

You have 3 main choices when it comes to carafes: plastic, glass thermal. Plastic carafes are not worthwhile. They are often made from questionable materials, they don’t last long, and the material tends to taint your coffee. A glass carafe sits on a hot plate so will keep your coffee warm for a while once it’s brewed. Leave it in the carafe for too long, though, and it is liable to become bitter. While a stainless steel thermal carafe may not be transparent, you benefit from superior insulation. Stainless steel carafes are also much more hard-wearing than glass carafes.

2) Can I use both sides of a 2-way coffee maker at the same time?

By no means all of these machines allow you to operate both sides at the same time, but then that is not the main selling point. You are benefiting from the choice of both brewed coffee and pod-based coffee on demand, rather than being sold on the idea of making two types of coffee simultaneously. It is possible on some machines, but this should not be a motivating factor on the buying trail.

3) How long does it take to make coffee in a dual-brew coffee maker?

This will vary from machine to machine, as well as according to the amount of coffee you load in. Most single-serve pod-based coffee is in your cup in less than a minute. When it comes to brewed coffee, expect a dual-brew coffee maker to take around 10 minutes or more to brew a whole carafe. Brew pause allows you to snatch a quick coffee while the pot brews. Many of these machines are programmable, so you can bypass the waiting period and set your machine to come on first thing in the morning and when you return home from work in the evenings.


III. Conclusion

We hope anyone who arrived here today at Madiba unsure about navigating the best dual-brew coffee makers is now much better informed.

Keep everyone in the family satisfied, whether they prefer the robust taste of a freshly brewed carafe or want the convenience of single-serve coffee in 60 seconds flat.

With the holiday season now officially underway, we are stepping things up here and bringing you new how-to guides, tantalising recipes, and impartial product reviews daily so you can kit out your home kitchen in style. We will also be bringing you plenty of inspirational gift ideas, so bookmark our blog as you leave and come back soon!

5/5 - (3 votes)

Leave a Comment