When buying a residential coffee maker, the first thing you normally look at is the brewing system. Most coffee lovers tend to stick with the type of brewing most familiar to them, so it makes sense to buy a coffee machine that makes your favorite drink.
Having a preferred brewing method doesn’t mean you have to give up on variety. Even if you mostly take your coffee black or prefer Americano over artisan espresso, it’s never a bad idea to have other options.
And while you can accomplish that by buying separate appliances to satisfy their ever-changing tastes, not everyone can afford such luxury. This is where 2-way coffee makers come in to save the day.
List of Top 2-way Coffee Makers
|Photo||Product||Coffee maker capacity||Auxiliary water tank capacity||Details|
|Hamilton Beach 49976||12 cups||14 oz||View on Amazon|
|Hamilton Beach 49980A||12 cups||14 oz||View on Amazon|
|Cuisinart SS-15P1||12 cups||40 oz||View on Amazon|
|DeLonghi BCO430||10 cups||40 oz||View on Amazon|
|Cuisinart CHW-14||10 cups||56 oz||View on Amazon|
|Keurig K-Duo||60 oz||60 oz||View on Amazon|
|Krups XP160050||10 cups||50 oz||View on Amazon|
How to Choose a 2-Way Coffee Maker?
It’s never easy to satisfy everyone’s coffee preferences with just one coffee machine.
If the members of your household have pretty varied tastes in coffee—or maybe your family or office simply consumes a lot of it—it could actually be more practical to get a dual coffee maker that can deliver two different types of coffee separately.
Aside from the obvious reservations regarding your potential budget, there are a few important key points to consider when browsing for a dual coffee maker.
Dual coffee machines in this price range can be divided into several main types based on the combination of their brewing systems:
- Drip coffee + single-serve combo
- Drip coffee + espresso combo
- Drip coffee + hot water dispenser combo
The drip and single-serve type is generally more affordable than top-end espresso combos and it’s also more suitable for casual coffee drinkers who prefer to have an entire carafe of Americano with a quick single-serve option on the side.
The drip and espresso type is particularly suitable for those who want to expand their beverage selection since the espresso maker section of many dual coffee machines is usually equipped with a steamer wand used for making cappuccino, latte, mocha, cocoa, and other frothy drinks.
Most manufacturers try to forgo the typical single-reservoir design, instead equipping dual coffee makers with two water reservoirs in order to give each brewing system more autonomy.
In most models, the capacity of the drip coffee maker is the defining factor. An average family or a small rec room would normally need a water tank between 50-60 ounces on the drip coffee side.
Water tanks in single-serve brewers and espresso makers vary anywhere between the customary 14 ounces (the size of a regular travel mug) and 60 ounces. If you only need the single-serve side to make a couple of small cups of coffee per day, then a more modest 14-20-ounce brewer will serve you just fine.
Review of the Best 2-Way Coffee Makers
Hamilton Beach 49976
Known for their affordable yet highly versatile residential products, Hamilton’s Appliance primarily caters to households with smaller budgets but strong desire to get good coffee out of the most family-friendly brewing options.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 12 cups
- Single-serve water tank capacity: 14 oz
- Material: Plastic
- Dimensions: 10.24 x 10.63 x 13.9
- Item weight: 6.37 pounds
- Supports a range of brew sizes
- Two brew strength options
- Lightweight plastic body
- Can be used with small paper filters, namely Melitta
- Adjustable cup platform with inner storage space (single-serve)
This policy is taken to another level with the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew coffee machine with two coffee-brewing systems—drip and single-serve—combined into one appliance with separate water reservoirs and dispensing options.
The FlexBrew employs a 1050-watt heating element to power both brewing sections, applying the boiler according to the coffee-making process of each system, and as a result, the energy consumption rates will change based on the machine’s operation.
Both sections come with their own water supply provided by separate fully-integrated water tanks. Though the reservoirs differ in their capacity, they both include exterior water windows to clearly display water levels at all times.
Another shared feature between the two sections is the adjustable brew strength. Whether you go with drip or pod coffee, there is always an option to choose between two main coffee strengths—regular or bold.
The push-button controls with digital timer and info display are located on the drip side of the coffee maker but are used for both brewers.
Drip-style coffee brewer
This side of the coffee maker is superior to the capsule side in capacity, featuring a 12-cup carafe and the water tank that matches in volume.
It’s precisely due to its impressive size that the brewing process takes more time to complete while also consuming more energy since the heating element is forced to work for longer.
Having such a sizable tank and carafe is particularly useful for large families, rec rooms, and student dorms—the coffee maker is capable of taking 60 ounces of water and brewing up to 48 ounces of coffee in one cycle.
When the carafe is filled to the max, it can be broken down into 12 shots, 6 short cups, 4 tall cups, and 3 grande cups.
In addition, the warming plate in the carafe stand can keep the pot hot for up to 2 hours after which the machine activates the automatic shut-off function for safety and energy-saving purposes.
The machine’s controls allow you to program delay start (up to 24 hours) and select the neat pause & serve that allows you to pause the brewing process and pour a quick cup of coffee before the pot is completely filled.
Located on the right side, the capsule brewer supports all K-Cups and pods from other manufacturers as well as your own pre-ground coffee.
Though loose grounds can be placed in a universal filter, the FlexBrew provides its own plastic pod holder that can be washed after each cycle and reused multiple times.
The brewing process itself usually takes 3 minutes. As mentioned before, the machine uses its heating element differently when brewing single-serve coffee—to save energy, the boiler is only activated for the duration it takes to brew one coffee portion.
The single-serve side supports 10-ounce cups served by pre-measured K-Cup pods and 14-ounce cups served by the basket with grounds. It also fits travel mugs as tall as 8 inches, fulfilling all your coffee on-the-go needs.
Hamilton Beach 49980A
Another budget appliance from Hamilton, this 2-way Hamilton Beach 49980A comes at nearly half the price of the previous model while maintaining all key functions of a dual coffee maker, from separate delivery nozzles to independent water supply systems.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 12 cups
- Single-serve water tank capacity: 14 oz
- Material: Plastic + stainless steel accents
- Dimensions: 10.63 x 12.2 x 13.7 inches
- Item weight: 10.06 pounds
- Scoop basket + soft pod holder single-serve options
- Reusable drip filter for coffee grounds
- Warming plate with automatic safety shut off
- Adjustable cup rest for single-serve mugs
- Compatible with paper filters
Though slightly heavier than the previous model due to the addition of stainless steel accents, this coffee maker is still pretty lightweight, weighing only 10 pounds while empty.
The small switch located right in the center of the front-facing control panel allows you to switch between two brewing modes with a simple flick between the single-serve and carafe icons. Push-button panel and digital timer are easy to navigate, so you can program desired brewing cycles and selected between regular and bold brew strength without an issue.
At 60 ounces in total, the water tank essentially corresponds to the water capacity of the 12-cup glass carafe. If used at its maximum capacity, the drip brewer will deliver about 48 ounces of brewers coffee.
The dispensing system consists of a permanent coffee filter that goes inside the large brew basket where you load your coffee grounds. It’s also much easier to clean this type of system since the filter is reusable and can be washed after brewing.
What makes this side particularly efficient for office settings is its ability to maintain optimal drinking temperatures of the already-brewed coffee thanks to the keep-hot plate doubling as the carafe platform. This nonstick plate keeps the entire potful of coffee warm for up to 2 hours, then powers off the system.
Another useful feature of the drip brewer is its ability to start brewing at any specific moment in the next 2 hours which you can program with the help of the machine’s digital timer.
Single-serve doesn’t mean you only have one brew size to work with: the 49980A features a retractable cup stand that can be regulated to accommodate various drinkware sizes, from regular 8-ounce cups to tall 14-ounce travel mugs.
Though the 49980A is not compatible with K-Cup pods, it supports soft pods from other coffee brands which you can insert into a plastic pod basket provided with the machine’s kit.
Its scoop basket (that takes the place of the pod holder) is designed for multiple uses with loose coffee grounds. This fine-mesh filter provides useful measuring markings for the amount of pre-ground coffee you need to use: the lower measure for 8-ounce cups and the upper measure for 14-ounce cups.
This side comes with a standard single-serve water tank designed to provide enough water for producing one 14-ounce cup of coffee. The tank isn’t removable but can be accessed and refilled with ease.
Moving on to the next price bracket of appliances with the Cuisinart SS-15P1 with the separately operated dual coffee-making system, stainless steel front panel, and two large reservoirs acting as independent water supplies for both brewing sections.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 12 cups / 60 oz
- Single-serve water tank capacity: 40 oz
- Material: Plastic + stainless steel
- Dimensions: 10.13” x 10.38” x 14.25”
- Item weight: 12.2 pounds
- Brew size selection for single-cup servings
- Glass carafe is kept warm after brewing
- Includes bold brew function
- Fast cleaning and maintenance
- Separate tanks with large capacity
- Indicator lights alert of water level and brewing status
Even though Cuisinart is still considered to be a mid-range appliance brand, the SS-15P1 just about doubles the cost of the most expensive Hamilton coffee maker on this list.
The price is more than justified, however, if not by the ample capacity of the appliance then by its versatile dispensing system and the wider extent of its programmable features.
All available features can be found on the control panel with backlit push-buttons, rotary dials, and digital timer. There you will be able to select the bold brew option, automatic 24-hour delay start, automatic shut off, carafe temperature control, and self-cleaning.
Temperature control and bold brew options apply to this brewer only, making the drip side more customizable in this regard.
With its 60-ounce tank and warming plate, the drip brewer ensures consistent delivery of hot coffee without the constant need to be refilled or re-heated. All grounds are filtered out with a gold-tone coffee basket which is made washable for continuous usage.
The coffee is dispensed inside the glass carafe with a stylish stainless steel handle. Holding up to 12 cups of coffee, the carafe can serve several people at once or simply supply you with coffee throughout the entire morning.
On top of its universal pod compatibility, the single-serve brewer also supports several of the popular brew sizes, delivering coffee in 6, 8, and 10-ounce portions directly into the cup of your choosing.
The pod holder is compatible with Cuisinart Coffee Bar capsules, K-Cups, and other soft pods. Those who prefer to measure their own coffee grounds can use the HomeBarista filter cup included in the set. The cup is reusable and lets you add your own ground coffee in any amount you deem appropriate as long as you don’t overflow the cup.
Unlike the drip side water reservoir, this water tank is removable for easier refills and features a permanent charcoal filter for a more thorough water purification process. The tank holds about 40 ounces of water which is enough to brew around 32 ounces of coffee.
The single-serve side also includes a cup stand with a removable drip tray that fits most common cup/mug sizes and tall travel mugs.
As could be expected from the leading manufacturer of residential espresso makers, this 2-way DeLonghi BCO430 forgoes the soft-pod option in favor of the manual espresso machine with its own steamer wand and voluminous water reservoir.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 10 cups
- Espresso water tank capacity: 40 oz
- Material: Plastic + stainless steel
- Dimensions: 14.5” x 11” x 12.8”
- Item weight: 14.2 pounds
- Programmable 24-hour auto start for drip coffee
- Drip brewer makes large batch and small-batch options
- Stainless steel front panel and drip tray are easy to clean
- Manual steamer wand for making creamy drinks
- Compatible with Easy Serving Espresso pods
With its impressive 1500-watt heating element, steel drip tray, and slick stainless steel control panel, the BCO430 is capable of re-heating and brewing coffee and espresso at faster rates while minimizing the mess on your counter space.
The push-button controls and digital clock separate clearly between the functions for each brewing side of the coffee maker, offering two buttons for the espresso maker and five for the drip brewer.
Additionally, the extra cup stand with anti-slip surface is added to the top of the machine for operational convenience—with this, you can store clean cups within easy reach or put already-filled cups on top of the machine while you wait for the next one-cup batch of espresso.
DeLonghi equips this side of the machine with a powerful 15-bar pump that exerts just enough pressure to brew well-balanced espresso, extracting the coffee’s original flavor without watering down the drink.
The fine coffee grounds go inside the classic coffee holder with a removable filter basket and two dispenser nozzles for filling two espresso cups at the same time. The coffee filter is also compatible with E.S.E. pod for faster serving.
Thanks to its swivel steamer wand, the espresso maker also lets you create delicious frothed drinks like latte and cappuccino. The stainless steel wand is operated manually with the help of a knob located on the left side of the unit that lets you regulate steam intensity.
Featuring a sizable 40-ounce water tank, the espresso side ensures a steady supply of hot water that can service between 13 and 20 standard espresso cups before the next refill. Since the tank is also removable, it’s much easier to clean it and add more water.
Just like the traditionally front-loading espresso maker, the drip coffee brewer places its coffee holder inside the drawer-like compartment at the front of the machine.
Designed to hold medium-fine grounds, the washable gold-tone coffee filter can go through countless brewings without a problem.
The same drawer features easy access to the water reservoir—simply slide the compartment open and fill the tank by using the carafe. On the drip side of the machine, you can find a water window with markings for monitoring water levels inside the tank.
The glass carafe holds up to 10 cups of coffee which can be translated into roughly 40 ounces of water and 32 ounces of brewed coffee. The machine’s controls also offer a smaller batch option that lets you brew between one and four cups of coffee to save on time and energy resources.
A more utilitarian spin on a standard 2-way coffee maker, this Cuisinart CHW-14 pairs its multi-cup drip coffee machine with a large hot water system that delivers pre-heated water to make a wide range of beverages and instant meals.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 10 cups
- Hot water system tank capacity: 56 oz
- Material: Plastic + stainless steel
- Dimensions: 10.25” x 9.5” x 14.3”
- Item weight: 9.25 pounds
- Quality filtration with charcoal water filter and gold-tone coffee filter
- BrewPause option for safely pausing the brewing process
- Perfect for dorm rooms and making easy breakfast
- Pre-heats enough water for multiple cups of tea, cocoa, instant coffee
- Drip side includes ready tone alerts to indicate complete brew cycle
- Water dispenser stand accommodates travel mugs and ramekins
Weighing just under ten pounds and taking small amounts of space, the CHW-14 succeeds in incorporating large water reservoirs and stainless steel elements without making the entire construction overly bulky.
Perhaps one of the main standout features of this model is its usage of completely independent heating and water supply systems. By equipping each side of the coffee maker with its own heating element, Cuisinart optimizes energy intake rates while retaining the unit’s power potential.
To allow a more or less equal distribution of water capacity across the board, the drip brewer side is a slightly smaller version of more common 12-cup drip-style machines. This doesn’t make this model’s 10-cup tank small—capable of carrying enough water to fill Cuisinart’s matching coffee pot to its fullest, the tank holds up to 50 ounces of water per brewing cycle.
The stainless steel pot that comes with the machine’s kit can also hold 10 cups worth of coffee and keep the brew warm for up to 4-6 hours. In addition to its effective thermal design, the pot features a protective plastic handle and a wide spout that minimizes possible dripping of liquids.
This is a fully-automatic brewer that handles almost every key step of the process on its own and supports other efficient functions like delay start, automatic shut-off, and self-cleaning.
Located above the carafe platform, the drip brewer panel—featuring both push-button and rotary style controls—gives access to the machine’s main functions, including the time-saving small batch for brewing 1-4 cups of coffee at a time.
Hot water system
By making the other side of the machine more universally practical, Cuisinart significantly expands your beverage options and even assists in making easy meals like instant soups, oatmeal, and quick porridge.
The hot water system operates on an on-demand basis, heating up the 56-ounce tank and dispensing water whenever the need arises. The simplicity of the delivery system plays to the coffee maker’s strengths, allowing you to use any form of drinkware and dishware to collect the hot water.
With two indicator lights—one to show the water is sufficiently hot and the other to alert of low water levels—and a responsive lever, the front panel is easy to navigate and use, specifically when dispensing water.
Keurig’s K-Duo is one of the more popular 2-way coffee makers that expand on the single-serve function with a large drip coffee maker and a fully-automated operation that requires minimal effort on the user’s part.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 60 oz
- Carafe capacity: 12 cups
- Material: Plastic
- Dimensions: 12.92” x 10.94” x12.76”
- Item weight: 14.37 pounds
- Shared water reservoir is visible at all times for easy monitoring
- Wide range of brew sizes for both drip and pod coffee
- Easy push-button controls with full automation
- Accessible replacement parts and fast maintenance
- Supports disposable paper filters
With a shared 60-ounce water tank and powerful 1500-watt heating element, the two brewing sides of Keurig K-Duo distribute the power consumption rates based on the brewing style, how much water any given brewer needs per cycle and how long the boiler takes to heat it.
Both sides support the Strong Brew option that enhances the caffeine content in your drink, an option that has more noticeable effects in single-serve portions. All available functions can be selected on the top control panel that arranges its push-buttons in a clearly readable pattern and adds a digital clock for more convenience.
Designed to fill an entire 12-cup glass carafe, the dispenser system for the drip coffee maker is supported by an integrated coffee holder uses disposable paper filters though it’s also compatible with reusable gold-tone filters made of fine mesh material.
The carafe comes with a comfortable plastic handle and anti-drip lid, preventing liquid from escaping through the top of the carafe or its nozzle. Though the carafe holds up to 12 coffee cups, you can also brew coffee in smaller batches, specifically in 6, 8, and 10-cup portions.
K-Duo is equipped with an efficient heating plate to preserve the pleasant heat of fresh coffee for several hours after brewing.
In addition to the 24-hour delay start option, the coffee machine adds the Pause and Pour function that allows you to pause the brewing process for about 20 seconds and get a quick cup of coffee before the end of the cycle.
Keurig’s classic single-serve brewer is compatible with K-Cups as well as pre-ground coffee. The latter can be prepared either with the help of disposable filters or a separate reusable plastic cup.
As for pre-packaged pods, you can enjoy all sorts of flavors and not only of coffee but also tea, cocoa and other hot beverages.
On top of the Strong Brew function, you can further customize your coffee options by brew size, choosing between 6, 8, 10, and 12- ounce servings.
One of the more compact espresso-and-coffee combos for residential use, the KRUPS XP160050 merges its two high-quality brewing systems in one unit, adding a hand-operated steamer for widening the selection of speciality beverages.
- Coffee maker water tank capacity: 50 oz
- Espresso water tank capacity: 50 oz
- Material: Plastic
- Dimensions: 16.5” x 10.98” x 15.94”
- Item weight: 8.38 pounds
- Pause and serve option for drip coffee
- Independent water reservoirs
- Washable drip tray on the espresso side
- Espresso filter + steamer with full control over frothed drinks
- Keep-warm and delay functions for drip coffee
Like most Krups coffee makers in this appliance category, the XP160050 holds some serious power in its 1600-watt heating element. By modifying the boiler’s power when applied to different brewing processes, the coffee maker is able to achieve dependably faster brewing rates while cutting down unnecessary energy wastage—a more than competent performance for mid-range brewer designed for casual use at home.
The XP160050 uses a standard drip coffee brewing system with various functional enhancements added for performance efficiency, namely the large warming plate and convenient front-loading coffee holder.
The warming plate doubles as a cup stand—in this case, a carafe stand—and is used to maintain the temperature of the freshly-brewed coffee for up to 2 hours. It is designed to hold the brewer’s 10-cup glass carafe that fits firmly under the dispenser nozzle in order to reduce leakages.
This side comes with its own 50-ounce water tank that operates independently of the second brewer. The swing-out dispenser compartment can be accessed from the front and easily pulled to the side whenever you need to load the reusable filter basket or add water to the reservoir.
The controls for the drip brewer can be found on the middle panel, offering you such options as the 24-hour delay start for programming your coffee brewing in advance and a customizable digital clock.
This side of the machine is powered by a 4-bar pump designed to produce espresso through the traditional extraction process using hot water and carefully applied steam pressure.
As for the capacity, the espresso maker comes with its own small-batch carafe that holds up to 4 cups of espresso per one cycle, though you can manually control the amount of espresso being dispensed.
This isn’t the end of the system’s capacity, though—the integrated tank fits up to 50 ounces of water, making it possible to serve up to 12 standard espresso cups.
The operation is also pretty easy to master since this side features only the front-panel activation button and the side dial for selecting between 3 functions: espresso, steam, and power off.
Additionally, the espresso maker offers a manual frother for creating various creamy drinks like latte and cappuccino. The steamer wand uses a smaller-size stainless steel nozzle to accommodate different drinkware and minimize the mess during frothing.
Q & A
There are two predominant types of 2-way coffee makers: the ones that combine drip and single-serve brewers and the 2-in-1 drip and espresso coffee machines.
Drip-and-single-serve coffee makers are a particularly popular combination type among American manufacturers such as Keurig and Hamilton. Drip-and-espresso coffee machines, on the other hand, are often represented by European brands like Delonghi, Krups and Braun.
If what you want from a coffee maker is speed and convenience, then your best option would be a drip and single-serve coffee maker. One of the more affordable models with this combination is Hamilton Beach 49976 FlexBrew.
And if you are looking for something fancier, you might want to look into 2-in-1 coffee makers from Cuisinart, for example, Cuisinart SS-15P1.
Those who would like to have an opportunity to brew their own espresso at home but can’t afford separate appliances could consider DeLonghi coffee machines.
DeLonghi BCO430 is a good example of an accessible espresso & drip coffee maker combo, though it’s still considerably more pricey than its drip & single-serve counterparts.
Most Hamilton Beach 2-way brewers with a single-serve option support soft pods, but not all of them are compatible with K-Cups produced by Keurig.
The Hamilton Beach 49954 FlexBrew, for one, takes a wide range of pre-packaged pods, including Green Mountain K-Cups. The same can’t be said for the Hamilton Beach 49980A that takes soft pods from other bands but K-Cups is not one of them.
In short, K-Cup compatibility varies from model to model, so it’s important to pay attention when researching Hamilton Beach brewers if you want your coffee maker to be universally compatible.
Keurig is the largest American brand that produces drip and single-serve coffee makers as well as machines that combine the two brewing systems.
Among the most popular dual-action coffee makers manufactured by Keurig are Keurig K-Duo and Keurig K-Duo Plus, both perfectly suitable for home use and especially larger households since they can brew up to 12 cups of coffee while making it possible to deliver smaller batches with K-Cup pods.
According to the information provided by the manufacturer, the two Hamilton Beach models possess identical sets of functions and differ only in size. Hamilton Beach 49980A measures 12.5″ H x 10″ W x 15 “D, while Hamilton Beach 49980Z is 13.9” H x 12.23” W x 11.08” D.
This makes the 49980Z more suitable for narrow counter spaces since its body is also narrower, compensating for the reduced depth and width dimensions with its increased height. The 49980A, on the other hand, is shorter and wider, making it ideal for small under-cabinet spaces.
Most 2-way Hamilton Beach coffee makers can be used in two modes: single-serve and regular coffee. The latter is usually supported by a traditional drip coffee brewer that dispenses coffee inside a carafe that comes with the machine’s kit.
To use the single-serve side of a Hamilton Beach 2-way brewer, you will need to load its pod holder either with pre-measured coffee pods or your own coffee grounds that go inside a reusable plastic basket, usually provided by the manufacturer.
To use the drip coffee brewer, you will normally need to add coffee grounds inside the gold-tone filter located in the holding compartment. These filters are made to be reusable, so they need to be washed after every brewing session.
Hamilton Beach coffee makers also provide automatic brew functions, meaning you can pre-program the start of the drip coffee cycle 24 hours in advance.
To extend the service life of any type of coffee machine, it is generally recommended to clean the appliance at least once every 1-2 weeks, though it depends on how often you use your coffee maker.
With 2-way coffee makers, you will naturally need to double your efforts since both sides require regular cleaning. The cleaning process also depends on the types of brewers used in a dual coffee machine. Each type comes with its own sets of recommendations that vary depending on the brand.
Following the manufacturer’s instructions, it is necessary to descale the water tank (or two separate tanks, if a coffee machine has independent water systems) at least twice a month, and those living in areas with hard water will have to double that number or purchase a stand-alone filtration system,
The side with the drip coffee brewer almost always uses mesh filters which should be cleaned with warm water and a soft brush.
Single-serve brewers are a bit trickier in that regard. A classic single-serve brewer has a special needle used to pierce the top of the pre-measured pods, so this needle needs to be removed and cleaned along with the brewer’s water tank, drip tray, and other functional parts.
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