Manufacturers push coffee carafes as a crucial design feature. These carafes could be thermal metal versions or heat-proof glass ones. But you may prefer to go without it. Maybe you’ve owned so many coffee makers in your lifetime that you have cabinets full of abandoned carafes.
Or maybe the coffee maker you have your eye on has other enticing features – even without the carafe thrown in. So let’s identify the best coffee maker without a carafe. We’ll start with a list of seven before drilling down to our favorite, giving you solid reasons for our selection.
Quick Glance: Best no carafe coffee maker
The Best Coffee Maker Without Carafe In 2021
1. Cuisinart DCC 3000 12-Cup On-Demand
Just because a coffee maker has no carafe doesn’t mean you can’t brew in bulk. These no-carafe coffee makers often have an internal tank. So they’ll brew a full 12 cups and just serve one at a time. Keep in mind a cup is 8 ounces, so you’ll get far fewer cups if you’re measuring in mugs.
Carafes are generally made of glass or stainless steel. But the internal coffee reservoir on this Cuisinart is boxy and plastic. It easily lifts out for cleaning. The Cuisinart also has a removable water reservoir with cup markings for up to 12 cups. For smaller portions, use the 1-t0-4-cup setting to automatically adjust duration and temperature. It’s fitted with a charcoal water filter.
To serve your coffee mugs on demand, place your cup under the nozzle and press the push-button. The button releases the drip valve and activates a downlight that points into your cup. This helps you gauge your cup level and avoid mess and spills. Especially if you’re adding milk.
The Cuisinart also has a ‘stay fresh’ setting. This is crucial because you may want to know if your coffee is two minutes or two hours old. It won’t affect the flavor of the coffee – which stays consistent despite the volume. But some people don’t want ‘overstayed’ beverages. For effective saturation of your grounds, the brewing unit has a showerhead system and a large LCD screen.
You can brew your coffee with or without paper filers. Cuisinart offers a starter pack of paper filters in addition to its permanent gold-tone filter. The drip tray easily slides out for cleaning, but you can also remove it when you want to fit a taller travel mug. The extra-long power cord (it’s about 3 feet long) means you can position it a further distance from your power outlet.
The Cuisinart DCC 3000 has a removable reservoir and an internal coffee container. It brews directly into your coffee cup and the downlight lets you see the right amount so you don’t spill.
- You can pull out the drip tray to fit taller tumblers.
- The 36-inch power cord offers more flexibility in placement.
- The coffee gauge adds functionality and style.
- While it looks cool, the coffee gauge often breaks down and is susceptible to contamination – steam, dust, and fine grounds easily sneak behind the plastic and interfere with the needle. At that point, it becomes purely decorative.
2. Mr. Coffee BVMC-ZH1B 12-Cup On-Demand
Coffee makers often introduce new models as a series. Every unit may have slightly different features. So while the BVMC series has a superior delay-brew function, the ZH1B is their best coffee maker without a carafe. It’s a relatively large machine weighing a tad over 8 pounds. And its dimensions are 12 inches by 16.5 inches by close to 9.5 inches. It has a 1-year warranty.
This coffee maker is convenient for hectic mornings. With many no-carafe coffee makers, you have to press the nozzle while holding the cup in place. Mr. Coffee lets you push your mug against the drip button, meaning you can serve your coffee using a single hand.
The internal coffee container holds 12 cups and brews best with paper filters. You can program it up to 24 hours in advance and it has both auto-on and auto-off functionality. Because Mr. Coffee brews internally, it has a coffee window to let you see how much coffee you’ve used up. It has a brew-pause function so you can serve at your pleasure. And it has an ‘alarm’ as an added feature.
Lots of coffee makers have LED indicators and auto-stop buttons. But this no-carafe coffee maker beeps to notify you when your coffee is done. The drip tray is removable so you can fit large travel mugs under the drip nozzle. The coffee reservoir and filter basket are also removable for easy cleaning. This is a front-loading coffee maker, and it has a 1-year warranty.
Mr. Coffee makes a wide variety of countertop devices. The ZH1B has no carafe but its coffee reservoir can dispense a dozen cups in single servings. And it beeps too!
- You can operate it with a single hand.
- It has a limited 1-year warranty.
- It keeps your coffee warm for 2 hours.
- The serving nozzle works as a pressure pump so it sometimes clogs. Run vinegar through it to get rid of build-up, limescale, or even airlock bubbles.
3. Hamilton Beach BrewStation 12-Cup On-Demand
The Hamilton Beach BrewStation is a bit like a transformer robot or a lego house. In the sense that it’s almost completely detachable. Its gold-tone cupcake coffee filter, coffee container, water reservoir, filter basket holder, and brewing unit all snap off so you can easily dismantle and clean your no-carafe coffee maker. Because it has two containers for liquid, it has two windows.
The water reservoir holds a dozen cups and has a water window that faces the front so you gauge your water volumes at a glance. The coffee reservoir that holds brewed coffee has a reservoir as well. It’s on the side though, so position your coffee maker at a spot that leaves the coffee window visible. The BrewStation is a quick machine. It gets your coffee ready in 2 to 3 minutes.
The control panel has a backlit LCD that lets you cycle through its features. It has a ‘stay warm’ button to retain the temperature inside the coffee container. It also has an ‘iced coffee’. This button preprograms the right duration and temperature to ensure your icy drink doesn’t get watered down, pun intended. This coffee maker weighs 13.8 lbs and it’s easy to refill.
Many coffee makers have a ‘keep warm’ function. But this one is programmable. So if you want to conserve power, you can pre-set it to maintain your coffee temperature for anything from four minutes to four hours. And because you serve your coffee by nudging back the coffee widget, you can pour your coffee one-handed. But it takes up a good bit of countertop, so clear some space.
The Hamilton Beach BrewStation keeps your coffee hot up to 4 hours and lets you serve single-handed. Most of its parts detach for easy cleaning but don’t put them in the dishwasher.
- Its removable reservoir has a front-facing water window.
- Many of its parts are detachable for easy cleaning.
- It keeps coffee hot twice as long as its rivals.
- The control pad can be confusing, and the housing is largely plastic (with a few metallic accents) so it’s not as sturdy as stainless steel models.
4. Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker
Why are you on the hunt for the best coffee maker without a carafe? Is it a safety issue after too many accidents with broken glass? Or is it because you don’t like the carafe clean-up process? A lot of us like our no-carafe coffee makers for their convenience. You can brew large batches and still enjoy a single fresh cup at a time. So while this Ninja does have a carafe, it’s a small one.
You can order it with the 50-oz glass version or the thermal one. But many people still consider this a no-carafe coffee maker because it works just as well without the carafe. It has a foldable cup holder that lies flat against the machine when you’re not using it. When in use, the cup holding tray can be adjusted to fit various tumblers, travel mugs, coffee flasks, and yes, even a carafe.
The coffee maker has a handy milk frother that also folds away. The frother adds versatility to your coffee menu since you can make fancy lattes and ‘ccinos. The brew basket has a removable filter basket and a gold-tone coffee filter. And rather than a digital pause button, the Ninja has a manual drip-stop slider that you can open or shut as needed. It brews classic, rich, or over ice.
The Ninja specialty coffee maker (CM104) does have a carafe but it doesn’t need one to function. It brews in 4 styles and 6 sizes, and its power cord is 2.5 feet long for added brewing flexibility.
- It comes with a small carafe but the carafe is optional.
- Both the frother and the cup holder can fold away.
- It has a gold-tone cupcake filter.
- It’s a tall coffee maker and it does emit some steam while brewing, so avoid using placing it below your wall-mounted cabinets since the coffee vapor will warp the wood over time.
5. Krups KM9000 On-Request
When people go on and on about no-carafe coffee makers, you may wonder what the big deal is. And no, it’s not just a coffee maker whose carafe got lost. The best coffee maker without a carafe is one that can brew and serve with or without a designated flask. That’s why they’re described as ‘on-demand’ or ‘on request’. The brew and store coffee in a concealed container.
These machines then serve said coffee a cup at a time. Its drip tray is adjustable in three notched positions. So you can move it to fit dainty cups, travel mugs, or even a full-size carafe. There’s a control button to select large or small servings and the ‘keep warm’ button is programmable for up to 4 hours. It can brew up to 12 cups at a time and the coffee window is right behind the nozzle.
That positioning is pure magic because as you lean in to serve, you can see exactly how much coffee is left. And while many coffee makers have plastic water reservoirs, the water tank in this Krups no-carafe model is made of stainless steel. It’s a low-mess coffee maker because as soon as you lift off your mug, the coffee nozzle stops dripping. It has weekday and weekend settings.
This 1100W Krups coffee maker has a 4-hour stay-warm function and an adjustable drip tray. It’s covered by a 2-year warranty and has a DuoFilter for consistently great-tasting coffee.
- The slanted top-facing control panel is positioned for added convenience.
- The coffee window is well-placed as well – you can check your levels effortlessly.
- It has an adjustable drip tray with notches that fit taller cups.
- The control panel has a lot of buttons so it can get confusing. Plus it has vents at the top, so avoid placing it under wooden cabinets that
6. Keurig K-Classic Single-Serve (Our Top Pick)
Keurig once had a monopoly on single-serve coffee makers. They have a lot of competition now, but many still consider it the best coffee maker without a carafe. This K-50 classic model is its flagship unit, and you can order it in cool black or bright red (rhubarb) to match your kitchen décor. The K-Classic brews your coffee in less than a minute so it’s great for coffee rushes.
The Keurig has a beautiful curvy shape, superior functionality, and safety systems. The control panel has warning lights that remind you to add water or descale your coffee maker. It also has a heating light and an auto-off with function buttons next to them. Below the two operating buttons are three more buttons that let you select cup size. They’re marked with icons.
As you press your preferred cup-size icon, it lights up to verify your selection. These blue lights are helpful when you’re fumbling around the kitchen in a pre-coffee haze. They glow blue, so they’re bright enough to guide your coffee making but not so loud they disrupt you barely woken brain or irritate your sleep-filled eyes. The power cord is 3 feet long and the drip tray detaches.
K-cups are a beloved way to get your favorite café fix at home, whether it’s Starbucks or Dunkin (or even soup!) If you’re worried about environmental harm, skip the K-cups for adaptors.
- Your Keurig can brew 6oz, 8oz, or 10oz mugs.
- The water reservoir is 48oz.
- It has warning lights for convenient troubleshooting.
- K-cups are non-biodegradable so they build up a lot of litter for landfills.
7. Black + Decker Brew ‘N Go
The Brew ‘N Go is suitable names. It’s a small, compact coffee maker and at 1.4 pounds, it’s probably the best coffee maker without a carafe. It only has a 15oz coffee container and no ‘water reservoir’ to speak of. But it’s fitted with a removable filter and a plastic filter basket. They both come off easily for dishwasher cleaning. A travel mug with a tight lid is included in the box.
This coffee maker has a single operating button and auto shut-off feature so it’s a real ‘for-dummies’ type of unit. It looks pretty, with its glossy plastic housing. And its silhouette is compact at 9.75 inches by 7 inches by 6 inches. Black + Decker offers a 1-year warranty. For fuss-free brewing, the light goes on when you start and goes off once your coffee is done.
The Brew ‘N Go is a small coffee maker, so you may feel miffed if your travel cup doesn’t get full. The brew basket can hold 16oz while the included travel mug is only 150z. But your coffee grounds do soak up some of the liquid, which explains the discrepancy. Another issue is the narrow drip tray. It’s designed to fit the 3.5-inch bottom diameter of the tapered travel mug.
But most mugs have a bottom base of about 4.5 inches, so they sometimes slip off the machine and cause coffee spills. Which can be frustrating because you brewed so little to begin with. But for a single-serve coffee maker, it’s relatively slow a 3 to 4 minutes per mug. It feels a little flimsy and plasticky, but it brews a good cup of java. The cord is on the shorter side as well.
The Brew ‘N Go coffee maker is a portable, low-end model with basic features and plastic parts. It’s lightweight so you can take it everywhere, but it won’t withstand much bumping and moving.
- It’s extremely portable with a 15oz capacity and weighing 1.4 lbs.
- There’s no carafe but it ships with a travel mug.
- The filter basket and coffee container are removable for easy cleaning.
- It’s a basic coffee maker – no extra features. Just fill, brew, and auto-off. Also, it’s plastic.
All Coffee No Carafe!
According to our findings, the best coffee maker without a carafe is the Keurig K-Classic. Here’s why:
- It’s a single-serve device so the 48oz reservoir is generous.
- It comes in black or rhubarb (red) to match your style.
- The Keurig can make 3 cup sizes and gives you access to 500+ K-cup flavors.
- That wedge-shaped water reservoir facilitates your Keurig’s compact silhouette.
- The control pad is positioned away from steam damage.
- It’s intended for K-cups but you can buy an adaptor or a gold-tone filter.
Which carafe-free coffee maker are you using at the moment? Show us photos in the comments!