Best Thermal Coffee Maker 2020 – Top 9 Choices
We all love freshly brewed coffee, but what if you could brew once and sip a hot cup of Joe a few hours later?… You can!
If you want to ensure your brew is kept hot throughout the day, a thermal carafe coffee maker is the perfect solution.
Below, we dive into the review for the 9 of our favorite picks when it comes to thermal coffee makers. But, If you’re in a rush, here’s our top choice for the best thermal carafe coffee maker:
Alternatives at a glance
The Best Thermal Coffee Maker 2020
When selecting the right thermal carafe coffee brewer for you, it’s useful to review the options one by one.
Here’s a deep dive of some of the best brewers with a thermal carafe on the market in 2020.
They say you should focus on doing one thing and doing it exceptionally well. The Breville Precision brewer does extactly that when it comes to consistency.
- Precise digital controls
- Golden cup SCA certified
- Programmable timer and brew styles
- Attachment available for pour over
- Carafe and filter basket alignment isn’t seamless
This is for you If you enjoy premium coffee tech and want the optimal brewing temperature on autopilot. You don’t need to worry about inconsistent hot water here, the Breville delivers and then some.
The positives being the perfect brew temperature, adjustable by a single degree via the digital controls. It’s certified by the specialty coffee association, which makes sense when you see how good this brewer is at consistently delivering the right outputs for temperature and flavor.
How does it perform this magic?
Well, its hot water system is a variable pump often found in pricey espresso makers. Giving you end to end control, from how fast the hot water flows across the grounds to the associated temperature.
If you don’t want to play around with it and just want an expert brew, that’s okay too. It has 6 pre-set modes, including an overnight cold brew option and a golden cup mode. The latter ensures this thermal carafe coffee maker brews in line with the Specialty Coffee Association standards.
If you’re one to enjoy pour over coffee, this brewer has an excellent little addition you can pick up, which replaces the spot reserved for filter baskets. So, you can add in your V60 and enjoy a pour over with little work.
The bottom line here is that if you want the ultimate drip brewer for technology and control, don’t hesitate to buy the Breville.
If you’re intrigued or on the fence, check out our list of SCAA certified brewers for more like this pick.
When it comes to aesthetics, the Technivorm Moccamaster is probably the most premium drip coffee maker on the market. With its stainless steel thermal carafe and body, it looks more like a piece of art than your usual drip coffee maker.
- Quality copper boiling element (no pumps) keeps temperature 196º– 205º F
- Guaranteed 5-year warranty
- Bonus travel lid included keeping your coffee scorching for longer
- Handmade in the Netherlands from durable metal housings and sustainable plastics
- More expensive than other carafe coffee makers
- Plastic parts can be fiddly and lead to leakage
The noise surrounding this thermal carafe coffee maker is genuine and warranted. It’s brewing capability is second to none and has superior consistency due to its copper heating element.
This type of hot water system is often found only in higher end espresso coffee makers, so it’s nice to see it here and not a standard feature and ensure hot water showers the grounds at a consistent temperature.
If, like me, you always forget to check the water reservoir, the Technivorm Moccamaster automatically switches off when the water reservoir is empty! Meaning you can’t attempt to make a coffee with no water and wreck your brewer. Yes!
It’s easy to use with a simple push of a button. 4-6 minutes later, you have 10 cups of your favorite hot coffee.
This is the right option if you’re always on-the-go. The carafe can keep coffee piping hot for more than an hour. Plus, it includes a free travel lid, great to be ready to go about your daily routine caffeinated!
Coffee brewing experts prefer this thermal carafe over others because of its genius design, and I tend to agree.
My favorite feature is the cone shape brew-basket design. This maximizes the flavor complexity with its pre immersion drip, which isn’t found in most coffee machines.
What’s more, you can experiment with your brew time. Try adjusting the steep time for longer for you a much stronger, richer brew, and thank me later!
If you’re on the fence, check out our full Technivorm Moccamaster review to learn more about this stainless steel beauty.
This high-performance thermal carafe brewer is designed to balance each step of the coffee-making process perfectly. With a healthy 8 cup size, 6 minute brew time, and beep to let you know when it’s ready!
- Double-walled and lined carafe
- SCAA certified
- Large showerhead provides consistent extraction
- 1500-watt hot water system
- Coffee strength with pre-infusion seems weaker
- Steam can be an issue with kitchen cabinets
- It’s a nuisance to remove the brew basket and screw the lid on each time
So what’s so good specifically about the Bonavita?
In line with other SCA brewers, Its powerful hot water system ensures you get a fast and consistent 195o–205oF brewing temperature. Perfect for locking in flavor in every cup.
No one likes waiting for coffee, either. Right? This thermal carafe brews 8 cups of coffee in roughly 6 minutes. That’s a quick pot of coffee in no time.
For pour-over fans, you’ll likely love the optional pre-infusion mode. This mode is designed to mimic the slow flavor-enhancing pour-over style.
It pauses the showerhead, giving the coffee grounds time to bloom. This means you’ll get optimal flavor extraction.
One thing to note – if you like a strong cup, stay away from the pre-infusion. Some users comment that the coffee brewed without pre-infusion is often stronger than brewed with it.
The Oxo brew is a coffee maker that has earned the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) ‘golden cup’ award. It looks slick and makes a pretty mean brew.
Not only that, but it’s also large enough to brew 9 cups (4 oz each) in rapid time, and a Bluetooth app accompanies it for you to geek over.
- Programmable timer
- Rechargeable battery
- Aluminum spill-proof body
- Bluetooth + app connectivity
- Lacks an auto shut-off feature
If you like to control all the elements of your morning coffee, this might be the perfect choice for you.
While it isn’t as programable as the Breville pick, It allows you to adjust your brew time, hot water temperature, and you can customize how much coffee you’d like to brew. This is great if you only want to make 1–2 cups rather than 9 cups.
Be mindful that if you have a low height on your worktop, the OXO might be too tall at 15 inches. The standard height of low slung cabinets is usually about 12 inches.
In short, if you love a carefully crafted pour-over, then OXO might disappoint. It does, however, make a great daily coffee with ease.
Overall, most people think it tastes better than most of the standard coffee makers. Although a minority have said it creates coffee a bit too bitter for their liking, but that’s probably the beans! Remember, you’ll need ground coffee at the right grind to make the perfect brew.
Whats the bottom line here? Well, if you want an SCA brewer, but without all the tech of the Breville, then this one might be for you.
Looking for something which provides value at a budget? Mr Coffee might not have all the bells and whistles, but there isn’t much better when it comes to a 10 cup thermal carafe at this price point.
- Exceptionally budget-friendly
- Fresh brew and programmable timer
- Keeps coffee warm for hours
- Brew pause function
- Not the most consistent brewer
- Not good at delivering super hot coffee
Do you always forget when you last brewed your coffee?
This thermal carafe coffee maker is most suited to forgetful, distracted brewers. It has a Fresh Brew timer display that tells you exactly how many minutes it’s been since your last brew.
It’s 10 cup stainless steel carafe offers huge capacity, and its 6 minute time to brew it makes a great cup of Joe for all the family and quickly!
The Mr Coffee coffee machine goes above and beyond with its capacity and brew time. In under 7 minutes, you can have 10 cups of piping hot coffee ready. There’s little compromise on flavor when compared to other brewers at this price point, with a full-bodied roast and consistent extraction process.
If you hate cleaning too, this might be the most suitable coffee maker for you. It does the cleaning and filtering for you. This coffee machine’s particular cleaning cycle eliminates calcium build-up, and the built-in water filtration reduces up to 97% of the chorine.
Although, that being said, it isn’t going to deliver you the consistency you’ll get with the Bonavita or Technivorm Moccamaster. Especially when it comes to hot water and brewing temperature.
It’s also a little more prone to leakage than other brewers, which might require you to take the entire coffee machine into the sink and clean the whole thing out – Not an easy job.
The bottom line here is that this coffee maker represents extremely good value. I f you’re looking for a wallet-friendly option and don’t mind coffee, which isn’t piping hot or always consistent, then Mr Coffee might be for you.
There’s a lot of thought that’s gone into the design of this model. It’s compact and certainly gives you a lot of ‘bang for your buck’ given its a 12 cup thermal coffeemaker.
- Vacuum-sealed – your carafe keeps coffee warm for longer
- Adjustable brew strength
- Even stream showerhead technology distributes water evenly for maximum flavor
- Durable stainless steel thermal carafe
- Auto shut off cannot be disabled
- Not spill-proof
- No programable timer
If you have a tight budget but need a large brewer that does the job, this is probably it.
I would highly recommend the Black & Decker, especially for the price. It’s not the most premium model, but this brewer performs where it matters – in flavor.
When you compare its price point to Cuisinarts and Bonavitas at twice the price, it makes you wonder just how this 12 cup thermal carafe is even possible.
Great for those who like a strong cup of Joe. Not so much for those who are in a hurry. The brewing cycle can be quite long.
Another great feature is that the carafe is well balanced, easy to pour from, easy to clean, and not too heavy. If you drink the majority of your coffee in the first few hours of the day, this coffee maker is probably just right for you.
Nonetheless, like anything, it has its disadvantages too. With no programmable timer, you can’t expect to let it brew and forget about it. This stainless steel carafe brewer will need a little more attention compared to more expensive options.
The bottom line is that if you want something with huge capacity, tight budget, and compact, give this a more in-depth look.
This 10 cup coffee maker doesn’t just brew extra-large batches, but does it super quick!
- Super quick carafe coffee brewer
- Keeps coffee warm for approx 2 hours
- Large capacity
- No programmable timer
- Energy inefficient
- Lacks notches in the carafe for coffee measurement
If you appreciate speed, the Bunn BT ticks the box and more. It’s able to have a batch of coffee ready to sip on in under 3 minutes. Brewing between 4 to 10 cups within 180 seconds is indeed rather impressive.
However, while it is quick the coffee maker uses up a significant level of energy to ensure it’s ready to pump out coffee quickly when you press the button. As a result, it’s not as quick from the get go if you leave it plugged off at the mains and then try and brew a batch.
It’s also a little challenging to figure out measurements when it comes to this thermal coffee maker.
The SS-20 is perfect if you’re looking for a single serve and multi-cup thermal coffeemaker all in one. One side brews single serve coffee, whereas the other is a fully auto 10 cup coffee maker with thermal carafe.
- Dual K cup and ground coffee compatibility
- Strength control for bold brewing
- Programmable timer
- Single Serve + carafe in one
- Removable 40oz water reservoir
- Leakage a common problem
- Slow to brew
Ultimate size flexibility. That’s the name of the game if you want single serve one day and 10 cups the next. Thankfully, this coffee brewer hits the nail on the head!
As a brewer with thermal carafe, its gold tone filter ensures you sip on only the most flavourful brew. Accompanied by a charcoal water filter, avoiding any mineral build-up.
In terms of heat retention, this thermal carafe keeps coffee warm for a couple of hours when sealed while retaining its flavor.
Overall, If you need a flexible coffee maker with thermal insulation, this one deserves a more in-depth look. More still, if you want dual capability with a single serve on the side, then this is certainly for you!
Interested in carafe coffee makers with dual brewing capabilities? Ninja has pushed the boat out with this coffee brewer, especially if you want a complete menu of drinks to sip on.
- 6 brew styles, including cold brew
- Single serve to 10 cup size capability
- Programmable timer
- Includes a milk frother
- Not great if you enjoy super hot coffee
- Water reservoir leakage is a minor concern
- Carafe design flaw leads to light dripping
The Ninja is the Swiss army knife when it comes to thermal carafe coffee makers. Versatility is ingrained in this brewer, with more options than most of us will need beyond a simple thermal carafe.
But, if you’re one who loves the thought of nearly any coffee under the sun (excluding espresso, of course), the Ninja might be right up your street. This thermal carafe coffee maker pretty much has it all, from regular coffee and tea to iced options.
Although, there are a couple of nagging points as with any product: If you enjoy milky coffees, then while this coffee maker will indeed froth milk, the base brew isn’t espresso as it doesn’t function under pressure. As a result, it isn’t going to be coffee shop style brewing. Alas, it’s a useful feature as long as you’re not expecting an espresso base!
Secondly, for a coffee maker with a thermal carafe, it’s designed a little odd. When you pour, it’s prone to drip slightly due to the lack of a complete V shape in the brewer. While this is a small issue overall, it’s something to be aware of nonetheless.
Thermal Carafe Coffeemaker Buyers Guide
Puzzled by the choices and need a helping hand when it comes to carafe coffee maker reviews? Check out our handy guide below to run through the common questions and answers associated with these brewers:
How To Choose The Best Thermal Carafe?
When you’re choosing your first thermal carafe like I was, here’s what I wished somebody had told me:
Consider these questions when you’re looking for a decent thermal coffee maker.
How Easy Is It To Use?
Is it intuitive, or does it have too many buttons, LED displays, and too many steps in the process?
Some thermal carafe brewers are a one-stop-shop, and it’s a push and go style.
Great for those on the go.
How Easy Is It To Clean?
Some will have a wider mouth on the jug, making it far easier to clean.
Others will have auto clean abilities, although be aware you’ll likely still need to wipe the external parts down to avoid residue.
How Durable Is The Material?
Make sure the material isn’t cheap plastic, as this won’t last long. Stainless steel often comes with a steeper price tag, but if you’re in this for the long run, it’s worth the investment.
What Technology Does It Use?
If you like a pour-over style, there’s a specific technology that mimics this style.
Ultimately, the best coffee maker is the one that suits you and your lifestyle.
What Features Do I Need?
Not all thermal carafe coffee makers have the same features. Consider what’s essential for you and remember that as with anything, if you want all the bells and whistles, you’re going to need to expect to pay a higher price for it.
When it comes to the best thermal carafe coffee, it’s likely going to fall in-between a temperature of 195 – 205 degrees. Why? Because that’s the perfect brew temp for extraction!
Some of the more value-conscious options on our list are less consistent when it comes to delivering a brew within this small range. As a result, you might end up with cups of coffee that aren’t hot enough or extracted well.
It’s one of the reasons why you’ll notice the SCAA certified brewers lead the way when it comes to precision temperature controls. As a result, if you’re picky like us about your cuppa Joe as you are about what coffee beans you brew with, maybe stick with a Specialty Coffee Association approved brewer.
1 or 10 cups of coffee?
How many people are you going to be brewing for? If you live on your own and are used to a single serve, it’s not going to make sense to look at investing in a 10 cup coffee maker. Unless you expect to sip your cup of coffee directly out of the carafe!
It’s important to note some brewers have multifunctionality to cater to smaller batches, such as the Breville Precision coffee brewer with its pour over feature. So if you want a coffee brewer able to handle both, check out the Breville.
Other Points For Consideration
If you’re anything like me, you’re forgetful. Refiling your water tank only when it completely depletes and needing a reminder to tell you when your coffee is done.
If so, a programmable timer can work wonders. Beeping
Thermal Carafe vs Hot Plates
The primary commonality between all the brewers on this list is that each is a coffee maker with thermal carafe.
IIfyou’re puzzled about the difference, the key point to remember here is that when you’ve made your 5 or 10 cups of coffee, they no longer require heat. Cheap drip coffee makers work via a hot plate, which retains some residual heat for a few hours even when turned off.
As a result, a thermal coffeemaker avoids over-extraction when compared to a glass plate and keeps your coffee warm for hours post brewing.
Perfect for coffee lovers!
Coffeemaker Temp Problems?
After making the mad daily dash to get to work on time, I often found my coffee stone cold when I finally got out the door. Arghh.
How to keep it at that perfect espresso temperature all day long?
Glad you asked.
Millennials, meet carafe coffee.
A coffee maker with a thermal carafe ensures the brewing temperature is maintained for hours after extraction. Meaning you don’t need to worry about wastage when it comes to your drip coffee maker. Nor do you need to feel the need to gulp down 5 cups of coffee because it’s going cold!
How Exactly Does A Thermal Coffee Maker Work?
Ever seen an old-school thermos or travel mug?
Well, a thermal carafe coffee maker works on the same principle. It’s the best way to keep coffee super hot all day using a double wall of stainless steel.
Some lower quality brands will use plastic or a combination of both stainless steel and durable BPA-free plastics.
Most are vacuum-sealed, offering a greater chance to maintain your coffee at a higher temperature for longer. This is because heat transfer is minimized by keeping the container sealed.
Unlike leaving a pot on a warmer – which makes the flavor bitter and burnt, a carafe keeps the flavor as fresh as when it’s first brewed.
Of course, if you’re a purist you might feel a little dismayed at leaving coffee to sit after brewing for hours, but hey, if you want convenience, then this is it!
How Long Will A Thermal Carafe Keep Coffee Piping Hot?
If you’re wondering what the bottom line is, a thermal carafe will keep your coffee hot for around 2 hours on average.
Some stainless steel carafes can retain their temperature for up to 8 hours! Although, if you’re on the go, you should grab a travel mug to keep coffee hot too.
Not only will a thermal carafe keep your coffee piping hot all day, but your icy beverage will stay nice and cool all day too.
That’s potentially more than 8 hours of icebreaker-style beverages at your disposal.
Is A Glass Carafe Better Than Stainless Steel?
This one’s easy. Personally, after trying both, I found that if you’re uncoordinated in the kitchen, like me, stick to the most durable option. I’ve broken one too many glass carafe coffee makers in my time.
Especially if you have kids who like to fling their arms around, it’s a safer option to go with stainless steel. It looks nice on the bench and lasts a lot longer.
Another reason to choose thermal steel over glass is that it’s more energy efficient. The coffee maker has to keep a heating element hot with a glass pot and uses a lot of energy.
If you like to save a buck, however, better to go with the glass option. It’s traditional, aesthetically pleasing, and more affordable.
I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’s hugely satisfying watching the coffee drip into the glass. Something you don’t get with a stainless steel thermal carafe.
How Long Does Coffee Stay Fresh In Thermal Carafe Coffee Makers?
Experts suggest that your cup of Joe can stay fresh for up to a few days in the fridge. But, we’re not recommending you drink day-old coffee. Fresh is always best.
However, at a pinch, and provided you refrigerated your beverage straight away, go for it. Yep, even the milky day-old lattes and cappuccinos will still hit the spot.
Chuck a few ice cubes in the mix, and voila – fresh delicious ice-coffee. That’s if there’s any coffee left – what kind of animal doesn’t finish their brew?!
Other Tips & Tricks
When it comes to brewing, there is one thing which matters above all – grind size. You can buy any of these thermal carafe coffee makers, but if you use the wrong grind when it comes to ground coffee, it’s going to suck.
Ideally, with all the thermal carafe coffee makers, we have listed, you want to use a filter grind.
The Final Verdict
So what’s the bottom line? When it comes to thermal carafe coffee makers, it really depends on what exact features your after.
The Breville is undoubtedly my favorite. Simply because of its consistency and how easy it is to use. Its stainless steel carafe keeps coffee piping hot for hours and tastes great. What else could you want from a thermal coffee maker?
It offers a functional design, and well, it just works well. For those who are serious coffee drinkers and can’t stand a bitter rubbish brew this is the best coffeemaker, in my opinion.
Alternatively, if you want something a little more aesthetically pleasing in design, you can’t go wrong with the Technivorm Moccamaster either.
Frequently Asked Questions
Which is better thermal or glass carafe?
Glass carafes are best for keeping beverages hot for short periods – up to 15 minutes. Anything longer and you risk the flavor of your coffee being compromised.
If your serious about your coffee flavor and like it throughout the day without having to remake the whole process again, then an insulated thermal carafe coffee maker is best.
Does thermal carafe keep coffee hot?
Yes. A thermal carafe uses double-walled insulation to keep your brew piping hot for up to a few hours without over-extraction. Couple this with a thermal flask, and your good to go all day!
Whats the right grind size for a thermal carafe coffee maker?
Use ground coffee, which is the same grind size as a filter brew. So ground coffee with around a medium grind size.
What Water Should I Use In a Coffee Maker With Thermal Carafe?
Ideally, you don’t want to use tap water. Instead, use mineral water or a water additive to use with distilled water. This is because tap water can contain compounds that can impact flavor.
Barista and coffee writer
Miguel Papa is a coffee fanatic with a passion for brewing. During the weekdays, you can find him experimenting with different drinks while he works as a barista. Otherwise, he’s likely writing here for Sip Coffee or enjoying the outdoors.