Best Moka Pots

Updated June 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
Bottom Line
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

42 Models Considered
7 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
103 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
We may earn a commission if you purchase a product through our links.

Buying guide for best moka pots

Last Updated June 2019

Coffee is serious business — many of us wouldn't want to face the day without our morning cup of java. But the expense of buying daily coffee from a barista adds up fast, and high-end espresso machines have huge price tags. Thankfully, for a fraction of the price of a true espresso machine, you can brew your morning cup in a moka pot and enjoy coffee that’s about as close to espresso as you can get.

One of the most important factors to consider when buying a moka pot is its size, as you need something that can make a sufficient amount of coffee for you and any coffee-loving members of your household. You might also want to consider the material and shape of the pot and whether you’d prefer a stovetop or electric model. In addition, there are several other features that make a moka pot the convenient morning wonder that it is.

We’re here to help you sift through your options. Read our guide to get the scoop on moka pots, including how much you can expect to pay for one and which models we think are best.

Moka pots made from 18/10 stainless steel will work on an induction stove, but regular stainless steel and aluminum moka pots aren't induction-friendly unless they have a built-in induction plate.

Moka pot capacity

The capacity of a moka pot is listed in cups, but it's important to note that this isn't the standard eight-ounce cup measurement. In fact, these listed cup measurements refer to "demitasse" cups, each of which measures around two ounces. Therefore, a six-cup moka pot can hold around 12 ounces, and a nine-cup moka pot can hold roughly 18 ounces.

The majority of people add water or milk to their moka pot coffee rather than drinking it straight, as it's close to espresso strength. We recommend allowing between two and three cups per person, depending on how strong they like their coffee.

Sleek and stylish

Whether you choose the copper chrome or standard chrome finish, the bonVIVO Intenca Stovetop Espresso Maker looks gorgeous. Made from sturdy stainless steel, it feels more substantial than aluminum models. The six-cup capacity is great for small households.

Stovetop vs. electric moka pots

As the name suggests, you place a stovetop moka pot directly on your stove to percolate your coffee. Stovetop moka pots are extremely easy to use, and they’re generally less costly than electric models. Most people prefer stovetop moka pots; they’re far more common on store shelves than electric moka pots.

That said, you can also find a small number of electric moka pots for sale. These pots have their own heating element and plug straight into a power outlet. If you’ll be spending time in a place where you don’t have access to a stove, such as a dorm room, hotel, or RV, an electric moka pot is a good choice.

Moka pot materials

While there are a handful of exceptions, almost all moka pots are made from aluminum or steel.

Aluminum is the traditional choice. Lightweight and inexpensive, these moka pots aren’t as durable as stainless steel, but a high-quality aluminum moka pot could still last you several decades. Now, some people choose to avoid ingesting food and drink that has come into contact with aluminum due to concerns about a possible correlation between aluminum exposure and Alzheimer’s disease. However, there are studies that don’t back this correlation.

Stainless steel is a newer moka pot material. It's prized for its durability and resistance to corrosion — especially 18/10 high carbon steel. It's easy to clean and is non-porous, so flavors from old batches of coffee or dish soap won't linger. On the downside, stainless steel moka pots are generally more expensive than aluminum options.

DID YOU KNOW?

All moka pots have a silicone ring that sits between the top and bottom chambers to act as a kind of washer and prevent leaks.

Other features

Color and style

While color and style is far less important than performance, you might still want to choose a model that matches the style of your kitchen. Some moka pots have a traditional style that looks no different from the original models released back in the 1930s. Others have smoother lines and a more modern appearance. As for color, the majority of moka pots are the shade of plain aluminum or stainless steel, though you can find a few that are colored bronze or painted in bright hues.

Shape

Traditional moka pots are octagonal, but some of the more modern-looking options have a round base. Traditionalists may say the eight-sided shape allows for more even heat distribution, but we find the overall quality of a moka pot to be much more important than its shape.

Handle

Most moka pots have plastic handles, but some feature metal handles. If you opt for a metal-handled moka pot, it should be a cool-touch metal so that it won't scald you when you try to pour your coffee. Plastic handles should ideally be heat-proof, too, so that they don't melt when exposed to high temperatures.

The moka pot is also commonly known as a stovetop espresso maker. Italian speakers call it a macchinetta.

Moka pot prices

Moka pots range in price from less than $10 more than $100. A simple aluminum moka pot will cost you between $10 and $30, depending on the quality. If you're looking for a basic stainless steel model or a high-end aluminum option, expect to pay between $30 and $60. The majority of high-end stainless steel moka pots are priced between $60 and $100, but a tiny number of designer models can cost as much as $150.

EXPERT TIP

The choice is yours: you can use pre-ground or freshly ground coffee in your moka pot.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Listen to your moka pot, and you'll be able to tell when your coffee is ready. When you hear bubbling, it has started to fill the top chamber. When the bubbling stops, it should be ready to drink.
  • Don't put too much coffee in the basket insert. You should fill it and level it off, but don't tamp it. If it's too compacted, your coffee could end up tasting bitter.
  • Consider the grind of the coffee you use. Ideally, it should be slightly coarser than you'd grind it for espresso. If you use pre-ground coffee, don't worry about this too much.
  • Check the water level in the bottom chamber. When full, the water level shouldn't be higher than the bottom of the pressure valve.

Keep it simple

The AICOOK Stovetop Espresso Machine is a basic and inexpensive model that follows the traditional Italian eight-sided design. The filter prevents grounds from entering the top chamber, but it doesn't deal with finely ground coffee particularly well. It comes with a spare silicone ring as a backup.

Other products we considered

Choosing a shortlist of our favorite moka pots was a challenge, considering how many excellent choices are out there. The following products came extremely close to making our list and are still definitely worth your consideration.

The GROSCHE Milano Moka 3-Cup Stovetop Espresso Coffee Maker is a classic moka pot that's sturdy and well-made. It's available in three sizes and four color variations. The Bialetti Venus is a modern take on Bialetti's classic moka pots. You may prefer the sleek design and the 18/10 stainless steel construction. Last but not least is the Cuisinox Roma 6-cup Stainless Steel Stovetop Moka Espresso Maker, a stunning contemporary model that performs well and ishighly durable.

Whereas a stovetop moka pot needs to be monitored, the typical electric moka pot has an automatic shut-off feature. You can turn it on, go about your morning business, and return to the pot a little later to find your coffee ready to drink.

FAQ

Q. What are the mechanics behind a moka pot?
A.
Moka pots have a bottom chamber and a top chamber, plus an insert that sits between the two. You fill the bottom chamber with water and the insert with ground coffee. As the water heats, steam pressure pushes it through the ground coffee into the top chamber, which features a tube for it to enter through. Once the top chamber is filled with coffee, it's ready to drink.

Q. How should I serve coffee from a moka pot?
A.
You should think of the coffee that comes from a moka pot as espresso rather than filter coffee. As such, you should either drink a shot or two as is (like an espresso), dilute it with hot water to make an Americano, or add hot or foamed milk to a shot or two of coffee for a latte or cappuccino.

Q. Are moka pots easy to clean?
A.
Stainless steel moka pots are very easy to clean, as they tend to be machine washable. Aluminum moka pots require a bit more care, as they can only be washed by hand. Due to the porous nature of the material, you should only rinse and wipe aluminum moka pots, as soap can leave an unpleasant taste. To prevent rust, be sure to dry your moka thoroughly after washing.

The team that worked on this review
  • Eliza
    Eliza
    Production Manager
  • Lauren
    Lauren
    Writer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Senior Editor

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