If you are on the hunt for an affordable coffee maker, chances are you’ve come across Hamilton Beach’s line of coffee machines. These coffee makers are a super popular choice of machine across the US for many different reasons.
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Let’s take a look and see what we can expect from Hamilton Beach coffee makers.
What Is a Hamilton Beach Coffee Maker
Hamilton Beach is a US-based company that makes pretty much every kitchen appliance under the sun. From air fryers to ice cream makers, Hamilton Beach sure knows its way around electronics. And with such a wide range of appliances, they, of course, make the most important appliances of all— coffee makers!
Like their extensive list of kitchen appliances, Hamilton Beach also offers a coffee maker for pretty much any brew method you could think of. Want to make a batch of cold brew? They have a coffee maker for that. Fancy a pour-over coffee? Hamilton Beach also does a pour-over coffee maker.
But Hamilton Beach isn’t really known for their manual coffee brewing gear. Most people know this brand for their automatic drip coffee makers, especially the Flexbrew coffee maker and the 2-way brewer.
Benefits of Using Hamilton Beach Coffee Makers
While there are many great things about these coffee makers, one thing that makes them as popular as they are is that they are affordable. Most Hamilton Beach coffee makers can be under $100, making them excellent value for money.
Many of Hamilton Beach’s coffee makers allow you to brew using either ground coffee or pods. This makes these machines extremely versatile. If a new coffee roaster pops up in your town, you can buy a bag of their coffee and brew it using a Hamilton Beach coffee maker. Or, if you want a quick grab-and-go coffee, pop in a pod and brew right into your travel mug. Easy!
How Does a Hamilton Beach Coffee Maker Work
Most Hamilton Beach coffee makers work in the same way as a standard drip coffee maker, with a few important differences. There are too many Hamilton Beach coffee makers to look at in just one article, so let’s use the Hamilton Beach Flexbrew for our example.
With multiple different brew sizes and styles, the Flexbrew really does live up to its name. Using the Flexbrew coffee maker, you can brew using pods or freshly ground coffee. Being able to use different types of coffee means this machine will easily fit into your morning routine.
You can also brew various cup sizes – from a single cup to a full carafe. It comes with 3 different filter baskets, so you can brew any way you want, regardless of the brew size you require.
Pros and Cons of Hamilton Beach Coffee Makers
- Super affordable.
- Brew lots of different cup sizes.
- Some machines allow you to use pods and ground coffee.
- Lots of programmable features.
- The machine’s water reservoir isn’t removable, making it harder to clean.
- Some users have reported their machine leaking.
Parts of Hamilton Beach Coffee Makers
For brewing large amounts of coffee, the Flexbrew comes with a 12 cup glass carafe. The carafe side has cup number indicators, so you’ll always know how much water you are adding to the water reservoir.
Full-Sized Brew Basket
To be used with the carafe, the Flexbrew includes a full-sized brew basket. Place in the best coffee filter, add some coffee and you’re ready to brew a carafe of coffee! This large brew basket can fit enough coffee to make a full 12 cup carafe of coffee.
If you love using freshly ground coffee, but only want to brew a single 12oz cup, you’re in luck. The Flexbrew by Hamilton Beach also comes with a single serve basket. This smaller brew basket will fit enough ground coffee to make a 14oz cup of coffee.
Lovers of pods will happy to see that the Flexbrew accepts K-cups with the use of the K-cup brew basket. Using this basket, single-serve coffee lovers can brew up to 10oz of coffee using their favorite K-cups.
Buttons on Hamilton Beach Coffee Makers
Being a machine that takes both pods and fresh coffee, the Flexbrew has loads of features. Let’s take a look at the different features of this pod and coffee machine.
On the face of the machine, the most important button you’ll see is the ‘brew now’ button. This button engages the coffee brewing cycle. Super simple. Load some coffee or a pod into the machine, choose your size preference, and press ‘brew now’.
If you are used to brewing coffee by using a Moka pot or an espresso machine, you’ll be getting friendly with the brew strength button. Brew strength on the Flexbrew can be set to either bold or regular. The bold function will brew a stronger, richer cup of coffee.
Using the ‘prog’ button, we can access all of the machine’s programmable functions. From here we can tell the Flexbrew to brew a carafe of coffee at our chosen time. This means that your coffee maker becomes a sort of alarm clock— waking you up with a fresh pot of coffee in the morning.
We can also set the time on the Flexbrew. This way, the machine knows when to begin making a carafe of tasty coffee.
Pressing the ‘carafe’ button will tell the machine that you want to brew a carafe of coffee rather than a single cup. This button basically tells the machine which section of the brewer to activate.
If you want to brew a single cup of coffee you’ll press the ‘single’ button. This works with both the pod brew basket and the ground coffee basket.
How to Choose the Best Hamilton Beach Coffee Maker
Some machines brew coffee faster than others. If brew time is important to you, check to make sure that the machine you are looking at can brew at the speed you require.
Do you want to brew a full carafe every day, or only single cups? Knowing the size you want to brew will help you narrow down your coffee maker options.
If you’re limited on bench space, be sure to choose a machine with a small footprint. Counter space isn’t an issue? Lucky! Take a pick from any of the machines you like!
K-Cups or Ground Coffee
While there is a huge variety of K-cups flavors, some people just prefer the rich flavor of coffee Bustelo and other ground coffees. Some people also love to use both. Choose a coffee maker that suits the type of coffee you like to brew.
Glass Carafe or Thermal Carafe
Most coffee makers will come with either a glass or a thermal carafe. A thermal carafe will keep coffee hot for hours, but a glass carafe looks nicer. Many people also think the coffee coming from a glass carafe actually tastes better, too.
If waking up to a fresh pot of coffee is important to you, be sure to choose a machine with a programmable timer. This timer will tell the machine when to turn on, and when to begin brewing.
Hamilton Beach coffee makers are very well priced. They are usually much less than a low-priced espresso machine. If you are looking for a coffee maker on a budget, there are plenty of options to choose from.
How to Brew Coffee Using a Hamilton Beach Coffee Maker
Now let’s get brewing!
If you are used to using a premium automatic espresso machine, you won’t find the Flexbrew to be much more difficult. We simply add water, add coffee, and brew.
We’re going to brew a full 12 cup carafe using a 1:17 coffee to water ratio.
- Hamilton Beach Flexbrew coffee maker
- 100g of ground coffee
- 60 ounces of water
Step 1 – Add water
First, ensure the carafe is clean. Then fill it with water to the 12 cup indicator. Pour the water into the left side reservoir. This is the reservoir for the carafe brewing side.
Step 2 – Add coffee
Next, take the full-size brew basket and add a paper filter. Then pour in 100 grams of medium ground coffee. Insert the brew basket into the carafe side of the machine.
Step 3 – Select the brew size
Once the carafe is in place, press the carafe button. Make sure that the carafe is in place under the brew basket.
Step 4 – Brew
Now all that’s left to do is to brew. Press the ‘brew now’ button and the Flexbrew will begin to brew your coffee.
Step 5 – Enjoy
Once the brew is finished, remove and discard the paper filter with the used coffee grounds. Wash the brew basket with soap and water. Pour yourself a mug of coffee and enjoy!
How to Clean a Hamilton Beach Coffee Maker
Hamilton Beach coffee makers are very easy to clean. First, we’ll give the machine a once over, wiping the coffee stains away, then we’ll run a descaling cycle. This will basically remove any mineral deposits left by the water.
- Flexbrew coffee maker
- Plain white vinegar
Step 1 – Add the vinegar
First, pour 1 pint of plain white vinegar into the carafe side water reservoir. Then place the carafe on the hot plate to collect the vinegar as the descale cycle runs.
Step 2 – Select the carafe side
Now press the ‘carafe’ button on the front panel of the coffee maker.
Step 3 – Begin the descale cycle
Press the ‘brew now’ button once. Wait 30 seconds, then press the ‘brew now’ button again to stop the brewing. This will allow the vinegar to really get to work, removing any stubborn scale that has built up inside the machine.
Step 4 – Continue descaling
After 30 minutes, press ‘brew now’ once again and allow the coffee maker to finish the brewing cycle.
Step 5 – Rinse cycle
Once the vinegar has run through the machine, empty the carafe and give it a good rinse. Now we’re going to run 2 to 3 more cycles of freshwater through the machine. This will rinse away any remaining vinegar in the machine.
Your Flexbrew coffee maker is now sparkling clean and ready to brew once again!
Does More Spending Mean More Quality
As opposed to getting the right coffee machine for your coffee shop, where spending more cash certainly buys you the best machine, the same is not necessarily true with Hamilton Beach coffee makers.
When it comes to Hamilton Beach coffee machines, spending more will usually buy you more features— not necessarily a better quality machine.
Do’s and Don’ts With Hamilton Beach Coffee Makers
- Do try different types of coffee. From pods to fresh coffee, the world is your oyster!
- Do choose a machine that is right for you. There are loads of Hamilton Beach coffee makers so no need to settle for something that doesn’t suit you.
- Do try the programmable start timer. There is nothing better than waking up to a fresh carafe full of coffee.
- Don’t forget to clean your machine regularly. A dirty clogged-up machine is the number one reason it fails and begins leaking.
- Don’t put your brew baskets in the dishwasher. Though they might say dishwasher safe, things like this are often better washed by hand.
FAQ About Hamilton Beach Coffee Makers
Can you use K-cups in the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew?
Yes! The Flexbrew comes with a K-cup brew basket allowing you to brew single serve K-cups.
Is Hamilton Beach a good coffee maker?
For the price, the Flexbrew by Hamilton Beach is great value for money. You are basically getting two brewers in one! Having said that, there are certainly better coffee makers out there. The Ninja Brew Systems are pretty impressive and will make a better cup of coffee, but they are also more expensive.
How do I program my Hamilton Beach coffee maker?
First, set the clock using the ‘set time’ button. Once you’ve done that, use the ‘prog’ button to set the programmable start timer.
How do you unclog a Hamilton Beach coffee maker?
Most blockages and clogs in coffee machines are due to the build-up of minerals and scale left from the brew-water. To clear all of this away, run the descale cycle as outlined above.
Do Hamilton Beach coffee makers have specific brew settings?
You can set most Hamilton Beach coffee makers to brew either regular or bold coffee. You can also use different size settings. This too will affect the flavor of the brewed coffee.
Which coffee pods are compatible with Hamilton Beach coffee makers?
The Flexbrew by Hamilton Beach can utilize K-cup pods from hundred of different brands. There are a bunch of variety pod packs offered by Bestpresso, as well as those made by Lavazza and SF Bay Coffee.
Hamilton Beach coffee makers are excellent value for money machines. They come in a huge variety of sizes and models, with lots of different feature sets to suit most coffee lovers. From single-serve to a full carafe, pods to freshly ground coffee, there is something to suit everyone.