The 11 Best Moka Pots – Stovetop Espresso Makers at Their Finest

Does-Espresso-Have-More-Caffeine-Than-Coffee

You have so many choice when it comes to making coffee it can end up becoming quite confusing.

We’re here to scythe through your different options so you can make the right choice for your needs.

Here at Madiba, we appreciate that not everyone wants to invest in a home espresso machine to make short shots of coffee at home, and this is where moka pots, also known as stovetop espresso makers, come in.

Now, while there is no substitute for a semi-automatic espresso machine if you want to master the art of pulling espresso shots, not everyone has the time or the inclination for that.

While you can get around this by investing in a super-automatic espresso machine – these are espresso machines with built-in grinders – these machines are not cheap, and they are also quite bulky.

So, if you want espresso at home but you don’t like the slightly artificial taste of espresso from capsule-based Nespresso machines, the best moka pots and stovetop espresso makers are a worthwhile compromise.

Compromise is the key word here, though. To get authentic espresso, you need 9 bars of pressure, and moka pots usually only produce 2 to 3 bars of pressure. While you’ll still get a rich and intense coffee that’s full of body, it will lack the crema you find on authentic espresso.

Assuming you don’t mind making that small sacrifice, what should you look for when you’re comparing moka pots?

  • Manual or electric: The majority of moka pots are manual models that sit directly on the stovetop. As long as you keep a close eye on these pots – they only take a few minutes to brew – and you also pay close attention to water temperature and grind size, it’s quite easy to get great coffee. You can also find electric moka pots that perform the same function but with temperature regulated just how it is on an electric kettle. Simplifying the brewing process and equipped with auto shut-off to prevent spillage, the downside is the loss of control over the brewing process. We review moka pots of both styles today
  • Capacity: Moka pots are most effective when filled to capacity, so don’t simply look for the biggest moka pot you can find, unless you plan to take full advantage of that capacity. 6-cup moka pots are probably the most popular, and you also find smaller 3-cup pots as well as larger pots with 10-cup or 12-cup capacity. The cup sizes quoted are for 2oz shots rather than large mugs of coffee
  • Cooking surface compatibility: Not all moka pots are designed for all cooking surfaces. If you have an induction cooktop, check closely for compatibility before whipping out your credit card
  • Safety features: Stay-cool handles are a must. On electric moka pots, always look for auto shut-off
  • Materials: The first moka pots were made of aluminum, but this material allows the residue from coffee oils to accumulate over time, leading to tainted coffee in your cup. Stainless steel moka pots are more durable and rust-resistant, and they will also discourage coffee oils from building up.

Now, with that simple framework in place, you should now be perfectly placed to explore our reviews of all the best moka pots and stovetop espresso makers. For the next best thing to espresso without needing an espresso machine and without resorting to making coffee without a machine, dive in…

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I. The 11 Best Moka Pots and Stovetop Espresso Makers

1. Our #1 Pick: Bialetti Express Moka Pot

Bialetti-Express-Moka-Pot,-6-Cup,-Aluminum-Silver

Features

  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Weight: 1.54 pounds

Bialetti invented the moka pot, so it’s unsurprising the brand has a stranglehold on this space. The Express is the flagship model still flying off shelves the world over, and it’s out favorite in today’s showcase of the best moka pots.

As with all moka pots, you will be getting an approximation rather than the real thing. Whatever you see in marketing and advertising campaigns, these devices simply cannot generate the 6 bars of pressure required for espresso like the Italians drink it.

One of the key selling points of the Express is the fact you can use it on all cooking surfaces. If you have an induction cooktop, though, you’ll need to use an adapter plate.

These moka pots are available in capacities from 1-cup through 12 cups. This model is perhaps the most popular, giving you enough room for up to 6 cups of espresso-style coffee. If you don’t feel you will make larger batches, you should consider a smaller moka pot.

Not only is the Bialetti Express extremely easy to use, but it’s also very straightforward to clean, eliminating one of the pain points common to these coffee makers. You only need to rinse it with some water after each use. Avoid detergents and avoid popping the Bialetti in the dishwasher. Doing so can cause irreparable damage to your moka pot.

This model gives you everything you need and nothing you don’t need with a moka pot, so what are you waiting for?

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Multiple sizes available
  • Ideal for gas or electric stovetops
  • Strong and aromatic espresso
  • Not dishwasher-safe

2. GROSCHE Milano Stovetop Espresso Maker

GROSCHE-Milano-Stovetop-Espresso-Maker

Features

  • Capacity: 9-cup
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Weight: 1.7 pounds

Next up is another superb stovetop coffee maker, this time from GROSCHE in the form of the Milano. What do you get for your money here, then?

Firstly, this pot comes in a variety of vibrant colors, making a pleasant change to the silver that dominates among moka pots.

Like all the best moka pots, you get a choice of sizes to suit. Don’t simply opt for the largest thinking that bigger is better. You should choose a capacity that best matches your everyday needs rather than using a half-filled pot.

Ideal for all gas and electric stoves, you can also use this coffee pot on propane gas camping stoves. While it makes a great addition to the home kitchen, the GROSCHE is also a first-class travel coffee maker.

If you treat yourself to a manual milk frother, you can use the rich concentrated coffee from your moka pot as the base for longer and creamier drinks, from latte and cappuccino through to a macchiato or flat white.

The pressure valve is designed for maximum efficiency, and the handle and knob are designed to stay cool to the touch.

Overall, you’re getting a pocket-friendly solution to making espresso-style drinks at home, and you won’t need to master using a complicated espresso machine either.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Food-grade aluminum chassis
  • Handle and knob won’t burn
  • Large capacity for the whole family
  • Finish prone to flaking off

3. bonVIVO Intenca Stovetop Espresso Maker

bonVIVO-Intenca-Stovetop-Espresso-Maker-Luxurious-Italian

Features

  • Capacity: 5-cup to 6-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 0.6 pounds

The bonVIVO Intenca is another outstanding moka pot that works well on all cooking surfaces, from gas and electric to ceramic and induction cooktops.

This stainless steel coffee pot comes in an arresting two-tone copper finish. You can also pick up the pot finished in black, ideal for modernist kitchens.

Designed to make 5 or 6 short shots of espresso-style coffee, you get some of the pressure you need for making authentic espresso, but you will stop short of achieving the 6 bars of pressure recommended for espresso just like the Italians drink it.

That said, you’ll still enjoy delicious rich and full-bodied coffee from this pot, and without any of the hassle accompanying using a semi-automatic espresso machine.

Like all moka pots, this one is a cinch to use, and you’ll be sucking down some lip-smacking coffee in minutes flat. Just remember to grind your beans directly before brewing, and always use bottled or filtered water for gourmet coffee at home the easy way.

The pot is also easy enough to keep clean, although we found a few scattered complaints about rusting issues with this model, so do your due diligence here. While you could pop this pot in the dishwasher, the manufacturer recommends hand washing for best results and maximum lifespan.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Striking two-tone finish
  • Makes full-bodied shots
  • Induction-ready
  • Some rusting reported inside

4. Bialetti Venus Stovetop Coffee Maker

Bialetti-venus-Stovetop-espresso-coffee-maker

Features

  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 0.15 pounds

Another offering from the legendary Bialetti stable next with the Venus, another stovetop model in their impressive line.

This company produced the first moka pot close to a hundred years ago and they have been focusing on honing the art of making stovetop espresso ever since. The simplicity of this device is deceptive: it’s also remarkably effective, and couldn’t be much easier to use.

Like all pots from this brand, you get a stainless steel finish assuring a lengthy lifespan and the ability to withstand plenty of rough and tumble.

You should refrain from putting this pot in the dishwasher. To clean it, disassemble and rinse under some running water. Sidestep detergents as this will taint the pot, and dry immediately after use. That’s the extent of the upkeep required with this fantastic moka pot from an industry titan.

The cool-touch handle prevents scorched fingers, and the handle won’t melt if exposed to heat on a gas stovetop either.

Pouring is seamless and completes a winning package in the shape of one of the very best moka pots on the market. Get top-notch coffee in less than 5 minutes, with none of the complications of using an espresso machine, and without the mess of a French press.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Unbeatable brand heritage
  • Heat-resistant handle
  • Super-simple to use
  • Not dishwasher-safe

5. COLETTI Bozeman Camping Coffee Pot

COLETTI-Bozeman-Camping-Coffee-Pot

Features

  • Capacity: 9-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 2 pounds

As we near the midway point of our moka pot reviews, we have a substantial pot ideal for travel purposes from COLETTI. How does it stand and fall?

The rugged stainless steel build means you don’t get any plastic components, and there’s no aluminum either. The downside is that this pot is one of the heaviest on our shortlist, but you’ll benefit from a great lifespan and a rugged moka pot in return for that extra weight.

The tempered glass top of the pot makes a wonderful contrast with the expanse of stainless steel.

The 9-cup capacity means you can whip up coffee at breakfast for the whole family, whether you’re at home in the kitchen or out on the campsite.

While this pot is a great travel solution, it also works well for larger families at home. As mentioned, don’t get a moka pot this large unless you plan to use it. These things are most effective when filled to capacity. With so much choice when it comes to sizing, there’s no excuse to get this wrong.

As a final kicker, the manufacturer offers a no-quibbles lifetime replacement if your pot is in any way damaged. You really can’t ask for much more than that. Explore the brand’s wide line of accessories, too, and see if there is something that takes your fancy.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • No plastic or aluminum
  • Ideal for indoor or outdoor use
  • Lifetime replacement guarantee
  • Quite heavy and bulky

6. DeLonghi EMK6 Moka Pot

DELONGHI-EMK6-for-Authentic-Italian-Espresso

Features

  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Weight: 2 pounds

DeLonghi’s EMK6 is an electric moka pot that’s ideal if your experience with manual moka pots is returning to find your kitchen covered with coffee splattered everywhere. You get none of that accidental overflow with this model, so how does it shape up?

Well, although this is an electric coffee pot, it stands on a base and offers you cord-free pouring, so you’ll have total freedom of movement while benefiting from an electric-powered device.

Using this pot couldn’t be easier. All you need to do is top up the aluminum boiler with some water and some ground coffee – for the freshest taste, grind right before brewing – and then you’ll be enjoying barista-grade coffee in minutes.

You get a safety system baked in so the pot will automatically power down after a couple of minutes. The pot will also switch itself off when you lift it from the base, giving you a double layer of protection.

Once you’ve made your coffee, you can keep it warm for up to 30 minutes in this pot, ideal when you’re rushing around in the mornings.

If you want more convenience than a manual moka pot but don’t want go all-in on an expensive espresso machine, this DeLonghi makes a superb compromise.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Electric powered
  • Cord-free serving
  • Auto shut-off
  • Not the lightest moka pot

7. Cuisinox Roma Moka Pot

Cuisinox-Roma-4-cup-Stainless-Steel-Stovetop-Moka-Espresso-Maker

Features

  • Capacity: 4-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 4 pounds

Next in line comes a smaller and more compact moka pot, this time from Cuisinox. What do you get for your money with the Roma, then?

Despite the small form factor, you certainly don’t sacrifice build quality. The premium 18/10 stainless steel is built to stay the distance and buffed to an attractive mirrored sheen.

Weighing 4 pounds, this is the heaviest pot on our shortlist, even though the capacity is fairly limited. You can make up 4 shots of espresso-style coffee with this pot, so it makes a great choice for couples of small families.

A nice touch with this model is the reducer attachment included. This allows you to make half the amount of espresso without impairing the extraction. Beyond this, you can also pick up larger pots if you feel this capacity will leave you wanting.

This pot is suitable for use on all cooking surfaces, giving you total versatility, even if you change your stovetop in the future.

To get the very finest coffee from this pot, always grind your beans right before brewing, and also use either filtered or bottled water, either of which will give you a much crisper coffee than using water from the faucet.

You should wash this pot by hand to prolong lifespan and prevent your coffee from becoming contaminated by detergent.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Premium 18/8 stainless steel build
  • Suitable for all cooking surfaces
  • Commanding mirrored finish
  • Very heavy

8. IMUSA Espresso Stovetop Coffee Maker

IMUSA-USA-B120-42V-Aluminum-Espresso-Stovetop-Coffeemaker

Features

  • Capacity: 3-cup
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Weight: 0.65 pounds

As we near the end of our collection of the best moka pots on the market, we have a dinky stovetop espresso and coffee maker from IMUSA. How does this pot differentiate itself, then?

Perhaps the key selling point with this model is the compact footprint and smaller capacity. This will not be advantageous for everyone, but all singles or couples looking for espresso with stovetop ease will appreciate the smaller size of this model.

Made from aluminum throughout, this is one of the lightest moka pots you’ll find.

The spout is intelligently designed so you’ll find serving a snap, and you won’t end up with coffee cascading all over your counter.

When you’ve finished your coffee, this model is extremely easy to clean. It comes apart and all you then need to do is run the components under some hot water to keep it at its very best. Avoid dishwashing this pot.

The main point to consider before committing to this moka pot centers on the capacity. This is arguably the most critical part of your buying decision, so make sure this smaller model suits. If not, we review plenty of beefier models above and below.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Lightweight and maneuverable
  • Disassembles for easy cleanup
  • Side spout streamlines serving
  • Minimal capacity doesn’t suit everyone

9. Bialetti Kitty Espresso Maker

Bialetti-Kitty-Espresso-Coffee-Maker

Features

  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 1.5 pounds

Bialetti is famous the world over for its manual moka pots, and this larger model continues that tradition admirably.

This pot comes in a more rounded design than the classic angular moka pots from this brand. The 6-cup capacity makes this a smooth fit for families looking for multiple servings at the same time.

The stainless steel build returns an impressive lifespan, and you can expect years of faithful service from this pot, despite the very attractive price point.

You can expect a rich and full-bodied coffee from the Bialetti in anywhere from 3 to 6 minutes, making this a reasonably brisk brewing method that still keeps quality uppermost.

Suitable for use on most stovetops, this model is nevertheless not induction-friendly.

Unlike most moka pots, this is safe to slip into the dishwasher. Having said that, we would always recommend washing moka pots by hand for best results. It takes so little effort to rinse them out with some hot water that it’s not worth taking the risk of detergents tainting your espresso-style coffees.

Overall, you’re getting one of the best moka pots for a larger family here from the best brand in the business at a price you’ll love.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Stay-cool Bakelite handle
  • For use on gas, electric, or ceramic hobs
  • Dishwasher-friendly parts
  • Quite tricky to clean

10. Luxhaus Stovetop Espresso Maker

LuxHaus-Stovetop-Espresso-Maker-6-Cup-Moka-Pot-Coffee-Maker

Features

  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 2.5 pounds

We have time for another couple of moka pots before rounding out today, including this sleek and simple model from Luxhaus.

The stainless steel build makes this pot a neat choice in high-demand kitchens. You should get years of service from a properly maintained pot like this, and it’s just a fraction of the cost of an espresso machine.

Sitting in the middle of the range when it comes to capacity, you can make up to 6 cups of espresso-style coffee from this pot. Luxhaus also offers a smaller 3-cup pot and a bigger 10-cup pot for large families, so pick which works best for you.

Made from food-safe materials throughout, you won’t suffer from the rusting or flaking that blights many of the cheaper moka pots that didn’t make out shortlist.

As with all the best stovetop espresso makers, you’ll enjoy a rich and full-bodied coffee that comes very close to the intensity of authentic espresso, even if it lacks that trademark crema.

As a final incentive, Luxhaus warranties this moka pot for life, removing any niggles from the point of purchase and allowing you to buy with complete confidence.

Almost all reviews of this stovetop espresso maker are positive, but we found a handful of complaints concerning customer service issues.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Food-safe materials
  • Full-bodied coffee on stovetop
  • Lifetime satisfaction guaranteed
  • Customer service issues flagged

11. Alessi Espresso Maker

Alessi-Espresso-Maker-9090-by-Richard-Sapper

Features

  • Capacity: 6-cup
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Weight: 2 pounds

To round out today’s curated collection of the best moka pots and stovetop espresso makers, we have a sleek pot from Alessi.

Designed by Richard Sapper, you are rewarded here with an expanse of polished stainless steel and rounded lines that makes a statement piece on the kitchen counter.

While it doesn’t hurt for a moka pot to look this good, we know that’s not your primary reason for purchase. Fortunately, it’s not a case of form over function here.

All you need to do is load in some of your favorite coffee beans, ideally ground directly before you brew. Fill the water chamber with some filtered or bottled water for the crispest end result in your cup, and you’ll benefit from the pressure generated on the stovetop to extract espresso-style coffee in minutes flat.

This moka pot will work on all types of cooking surface, including induction cooktops, making it one of the most versatile performers in this crowded space.

If the 6-cup capacity of this pot doesn’t make the right fit, you can also opt for a smaller 3-cup model.

For a moka pot that gives you everything you need but nothing you don’t, this is one of the strongest options at your disposal.

Things We Like Things We Dislike
  • Works on all stovetops
  • Induction-ready
  • Striking aesthetics
  • Not recommended for dishwasher

II. FAQs

1) Can you make authentic espresso in a moka pot?

No, but you’ll find that the rich and concentrated coffee you can produce in a moka pot comes pretty close to the real thing. The lack of pressure prevents you from achieving authentic espresso. Espresso refers to a brewing method, and this method requires that hot water is sent through the coffee grinds at high pressure. 9 bars of pressure is recommended for espresso. The best moka pots can generate pressure, but they will typically only achieve 2 to 3 bars, insufficient for authentic espresso.

2) Is a moka pot safe to use?

These devices are safe to use when supervised. Leaving moka pots unattended is a recipe for disaster. It’s too easy to lose track of time, and this can easily lead to your pot overflowing and coffee grounds being sprayed all over the kitchen walls and countertops. If you have experienced this in the past and don’t want to repeat it, either supervise your moka pot or consider an electric pot featuring auto shut-off.

3) How long does it take to brew coffee on the stovetop with a moka pot?

With most moka pots, you’ll find it takes between 3 and 5 minutes to brew espresso-style coffee. Be prepared to experiment when you start out. Note down your preferences as you dial them in and then replicate the results with ease when you have mastered the method.

4) What grind size do I need when using a moka pot?

Use a grind size that comes somewhere between fine and medium-fine. If your grinds are too fine – the consistency you would use for authentic espresso or Turkish coffee – this could clog the filter, leading to unwanted and excessively high pressure.

5) Does a moka pot make strong coffee?

Yes. The coffee from a moka pot will be roughly double the strength of regular brewed coffee.

6) Does a moka pot have any removable components?

Yes. The filter screen and gasket will detach for ease of cleaning.

7) Is it possible to add milk to coffee made in a moka pot?

Certainly! You could turn your espresso-style base into longer and creamier coffees using some steamed milk from a milk frother. Alternatively, add some hot water to dilute your strong and short shot into a delicious americano.

8) What size moka pot should I get?

Get a pot capable of making the amount of coffee you typically drink in a single sitting. Filling moka pots to capacity gives the best results.


III. Conclusion

Anyone who arrived here at Madiba today unsure about how to choose the best moka pots among so many options should now be ideally placed.

The main choice you’ll need to make here concerns whether you want a manual stovetop solution for making espresso-style coffee or an electric moka pot. We review both options so you can establish which makes the right fit.

As long as you are aware that you won’t be able to generate the 9 bars of pressure recommended for authentic espresso, you will benefit from a rich and aromatic coffee that’s highly concentrated and very close to the real thing. You only really lose out on that crema while getting a full-bodied rush of great coffee.

Bookmark our blog on your way out and be sure to pop back soon. We add fresh content daily and we have a super-busy schedule for the looming festive season. See you soon!

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