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Best Stovetop Coffee Makers (Moka Pots) 2020 – Top Pick + Reviews

Hard-core coffee aficionados may frown at the very notion of stovetop espresso makers but there is a reason Moka pots are so popular. Not only that they are great for beginners, but these humble coffee makers allow you to take your brewing skills outdoors.

We’ve done all the hard work for you and chosen the best Moka pot money can buy. Plus, there’s a comprehensive buyer’s guide to help you make your choice, so dive right in.

Top Pick
an aluminum Bialetti Moka Express

Bialetti 6801 Moka Stovetop Coffee Maker

Coming from the famous Bialetti Industrie, this stovetop coffee maker is designed to provide a rich, flavorful brew. With its iconic octagonal design, aluminum body, and patented safety valve, this model has features to impress.

How to Choose the Best Stovetop Espresso Maker

one of the best moka pots on top of a stove

Selecting the right stovetop Moka pot is not rocket science. However, there are a few things to consider. Stovetop compatibility and how you are going to use it are the most important aspects, but there’s more.

How You Plan to Use It

Moka Pots aren’t as technologically-sophisticated as Keurig machines or the best SCAA coffee makers – neither are they simpler to use than cold brewers – but they are a classic. But among various brands, they can vary in features too. Your lifestyle largely determines the type and espresso pot brand you should choose. For example, if you plan to use the coffee maker in your kitchen, a Bialetti stainless steel model would be a top choice. However, the selection criteria are likely to be different if you take your brewing outdoors.

“I like to leave the lid open, so when the coffee starts coming out you can take it off before it burns dry. When the coffee starts to turn golden or like a honey color, you want to get ready to take it off.”

Don’t take things wrong, a Bialetti works like a charm with a portable propane stove. Nevertheless, you should pick a model that’s engineered to take some beating at the campsite.

Is It Compatible with Your Stove?

One of the first things to look at is your type of stove. Most Moka pots are compatible with glass-top electric stoves. However, some models yield better results with gas stoves which is usually indicated on the package. And if you have an induction stove, you need to double-check the pot’s material. (1)

Most stainless steel Moka pots work with induction stoves. But, some combinations of stainless steel and aluminum are not compatible.

There is a simple way to determine if a pot is induction-ready. Get a magnet and if it grabs onto the pot’s underside tightly, it will work with an induction stove.

Material

The contest here is between stainless steel and aluminum, which means they don’t contain Bisphenol A. But between those two materials, which do you choose?

Aluminum models might not be suitable for every stovetop and they require more TLC. To be exact, these pots are not dishwasher-ready and they need to be dried thoroughly after washing to prevent corrosion (2). On the upside, an aluminum Moka espresso coffee maker is usually more affordable.

Stainless steel doesn’t corrode and it’s non-porous, which makes a stainless-steel espresso maker Moka pot more durable (3). These models are dishwasher-ready, but it’s still recommendable to hand-wash them. The only downside is that stainless steel pots are a bit more expensive.

Capacity

The question of capacity brings you back to lifestyle choices. If you need to quench the thirst of a few coffee lovers in your household then you need a ten-cup Moka pot, at least.

Remember, Moka pots are engineered for brewing coffee in small amounts. But the brew is usually much stronger than regular drip.

It pays to take a closer look at the brewing volumes. With Moka pots, a cup is not your regular 8oz brew; it is one 2oz shot of stovetop espresso. In other words, if you get a 6 cup stovetop espresso maker it brews about 12oz of coffee. Given the brew’s potency, this should be enough for 3 or 4 servings.

Related: Best Single Serve Coffee Makers

The Best Stovetop Espresso Maker Reviews

What are the best Moka pot models that made the cut? Keep reading to find out.

1. Godmorn Stovetop Italian Coffee Maker – Top pick

Godmorn Stovetop Italian Coffee Maker

Specifications

  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Compatible with: Induction, electric, ceramic, gas stove, or alcohol furnace
  • Capacity: Six cups

SEE ON AMAZON

Once you take a look at the Godmorn, it’s easy to understand why this Italian coffee maker is Amazon’s choice. To make things clear, this model is not Italian-made – it just makes Italian-style stovetop Moka.

The 430 stainless steel makes the Godmorn pot look really cool and gives it great anti-corrosion properties (4). The high-quality material is also used for the extraction hole, so you can expect a smooth brew with a rich flavor profile.

This Godmorn holds 300ml of water, though there is also a 450ml variant. Either way, the volume translates to about six or nine cups of stovetop espresso, respectively. In addition, this coffee maker is compatible with any stove.

The pot’s handle is ergonomic and thermally efficient – it doesn’t get hot.

Related: Best Coffee Makers with Thermal Carafe

This model measures 3.9” x 4.9” x 8.1” and weighs 1.25 pounds, so the Godmorn gets some portability points as well.

BEST SUITED FOR: Small families and coffee-hungry singles. Plus, you can take it camping worry-free.

2. Grosche Milano Stovetop Espresso Maker – Most Versatile

Grosche Moka Pot

Specifications

  • Material: EN301 high-grade aluminum
  • Compatible with: Electric, gas, propane camping stoves
  • Capacity: Three cups

SEE ON AMAZON

The Grosche Milano is designed to be a true show-stopper, but it is also the most versatile model in this write-up. Why is this so?

This is a high-grade aluminum Moka espresso coffee maker. The Grosche also features protective top coating for extra durability. This pot comes in four different colors and you can also choose one with a wooden handle.

Speaking of handles, they are large, ergonomic, and there is no way you’ll get burned with this unit. The model is a three-cup Moka pot and it brews about 5oz of coffee per cup. If this is too small for you, this same model comes in six and nine-cup sizes. Plus, this Grosche offers compatibility that’s hard to rival.

Being an aluminum model, the Groche works best with electric or gas stoves and it’s also ready for your propane camping stove. According to the company, you can also use it with a glass induction stove, but expect longer brewing times.

BEST SUITED FOR: Weekend warriors and outdoor enthusiasts. At the same time, it works well in your kitchen.

3. De’Longhi EMK6 Alicia Electric Espresso Maker – Independent and Self-Heating

DeLonghi Alicia

Specifications

  • Material: Aluminum, plastic
  • Compatible with: The Alicia stand
  • Capacity: Three to six cups

SEE ON AMAZON

Looking for an electric Moka espresso coffee maker? The De’Longhi EMK6 Alicia electric might be right up your alley. This unique espresso machine is designed to make your brewing experience easier and quicker.

The EMK6 has an auto-off function, so there is no need to worry about overflows or burning your coffee. What’s more, it can keep the coffee warm for half an hour. The brewing container is transparent, so you can see what’s going on even with the lid down.

There is just one start/stop button and your job is to pour enough water and get the right amount of coffee grounds. The EMK6 has a varying capacity between three and six cups and the unit comes packed with the required filters.

As for the materials, the boiler is made of aluminum and the brewing container is high-quality plastic. Being a self-heating and independent model, the DeLonghi EMK6 Alicia electric works only with its proprietary stand and is not ready for the outdoors.

BEST SUITED FOR: Moka lovers who don’t plan to take it camping. It’s a great entry-level model for those who want to get acquainted with Moka brewing.

Related: Best Grind and Brew Coffee Makers

4. Tops Rapid Brew Stovetop Coffee Percolator – Has That Old School Charm

Tops Rapid Brew

Specifications

  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Compatible with: Gas and propane camping stoves, electric stoves
  • Capacity: Twelve cups

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There’s no school like the old school and the Tops Rapid Brew Stovetop Coffee Percolator is there to prove it. Simple design, simple controls, and versatility are the highlights of this 12-cup stainless steel stovetop percolator (5).

As for the build quality, this Tops features 18/8 stainless steel, making it one of the most durable percolators. The steel is polished and the luster adds more to the charm of this unit. Other than that, there is a glass knob on the top and a Permawood handle.

The handle could be more ergonomic, but it does a good job of keeping your hands safe from the heat. The Tops works best with gas stoves and propane camping stoves. Since it’s made of stainless steel, there shouldn’t be any problems with other stove types, either.

Finally, this is among the best 12-cup stainless steel stovetop units to take camping. If that’s too big, smaller, 6 and 9-cup versions are also available.

BEST SUITED FOR: Moka lovers looking for a trusty companion on camping adventures. And it brews enough of the beverage to quench the thirst of four or more coffee lovers.

5. Bialetti 6801 Moka Stovetop Coffee Maker – Best of the Best – Our Top Pick!

Bialetti 6801 Stovetop Coffee Maker

Specifications

  • Material: Aluminum
  • Compatible with: Gas stoves and propane camping stoves, electric stoves
  • Capacity: Nine cups

SEE ON AMAZON

Since the 1930s, the Bialetti name has been synonymous with stovetop Moka espresso machines. And there are many reasons the Bialetti still remains the ultimate espresso pot to this day.

For starters, you cannot miss the iconic Bialetti octagonal design and the cute mascot below the lid. However, shape and design are only a small part of the story. The company patented the safety valve that prevents your pot from exploding.

“90% of Italian households, at least, own a Bialetti. When I lived in Italy, this is what people used for daily making coffee at home. They would often make a coffee latte in the morning which was actually Moka Express coffee and hot, not frothed, just hot milk.”

What’s more, they were the first to introduce the special extraction chamber which has been perfected to this day. This stovetop espresso pot is made in Italy and it has a 9-cup capacity. The volume is about 14.2oz, which is enough for two full mugs.

The handle is ergonomic, it doesn’t transfer heat, and there is a notch for your index finger to have a better grip. This Bialetti is made of top-quality aluminum and it’s primarily designed to work with gas and electric stoves.

BEST SUITED FOR: Coffee lovers looking for balance of features, build quality, and price.

Related: Coffee Brewers Made in the USA and Countries Other Than China

6. Bialetti Kitty Stainless Steel Stovetop Espresso Maker – Runner Up

Bialetti Kitty

Specifications

  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Compatible with: Gas, ceramic, and electric stoves
  • Capacity: Six cups

SEE ON AMAZON

If you like Bialetti stovetop espresso makers, you’ll surely love the Kitty. This model takes a different approach and takes the stovetop Moka into the 21st century. So what’s the secret?

The Bialetti Kitty sports all stainless steel construction and a contoured body that makes it more stylish. More importantly, the material improves the stove compatibility, and the Kitty works great with ceramic, electric, as well as gas stoves.

This model has a rather long, heat-resistant Bakelite handle that offers a wide reach to keep your fingers away from the heat. What’s more, the Bialetti Kitty is dishwasher-ready. However, you should spare some time and hand-wash the Kitty, just to extend its life a little.

When it comes to capacity, this stainless steel stovetop espresso pot is a 6-cup coffee maker. You get about 12oz of coffee which makes it great for couples and small families.

It’s worth noting that you can take the Kitty on a camping trip. But, the unit looks so nice that you might actually decide against it.

BEST SUITED FOR: Those looking for a stylish Moka pot to match a modern kitchen.

7. Bialetti Venus Stovetop Moka Pot – Compact and Sturdy

Bialetti Kitty

Specifications

  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Compatible with: Gas, ceramic, and electric stoves
  • Capacity: Six cups

SEE ON AMAZON

When compared to other stainless steel Moka pots, the Bialetti Venus stands out with its build quality and compact design. It departs from the traditional octagonal Bialetti Moka pot design and offers sleek modern lines.

This is one of the most compact Bialetti coffee makers and it measures 7.1” x 9” x 11.3” and weighs 1.5 pounds. It might not be the most lightweight model, but this is to be expected with stainless steel construction. However, the Bialetti Venus is a great Moka espresso coffee maker to take camping.

Like most other stainless steel Moka pots, this Bialetti is compatible with pretty much any stove, including induction models. This puts it among the most versatile coffee makers but, in practice, Bialetti stovetop espresso makers perform best with gas and some electric stoves.

This espresso pot has a six-cup capacity or about 10 fluid ounces. There is also a four-cup variant, should you need an even more compact coffee maker.

BEST SUITED FOR: Someone looking for the most durable stovetop espresso makers. It works great for home and outdoor use, plus the unit is super easy to clean.

8. Cuisinox Roma Stainless Steel Stovetop Espresso Maker – Most Stylish

Cuisinox Roma

Specifications

  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Compatible with: Gas, ceramic, and electric stoves
  • Capacity: Ten cups

SEE ON AMAZON

The Cuisinox Roma is a true show stopper. From sleek ergonomic lines to an all-stainless-steel body, this stovetop model is engineered for trendy coffee lovers.However, brewing coffee in style is not the only thing the Roma has to offer.

18/10 stainless steel provides durability and makes this Moka espresso machine ready for any stove. The model in this review is the largest in the lineup, with a 10-cup capacity. Cuisinox also offers four and six-cup variants.

The largest Roma is quite compact at the same time. This stainless steel stovetop espresso maker measures 7” x 7” x 10”, but it’s a bit heavy at 3 pounds. The extra weight comes from the stainless steel and the unit’s capacity.

Overall, the Cuisinox Roma has all the features you could wish for, but there is one thing. The handle is made entirely from stainless steel, so there might be some heat transfer. On the bright side, it’s ergonomic and large enough so you won’t have any problems with the grip.

BEST SUITED FOR: Someone looking for the most stylish unit on the list – this model is an outstanding piece for every kitchen. And if money is no object, feel free to get this elegant steel stovetop espresso maker for your friends.

The Verdict

Your lifestyle choices and coffee needs largely determine which stovetop coffee maker you’ll select. All models in this list, except the De’Longhi, can be used outdoors. However, some coffee makers look at home in any environment.

One such model is the Bialetti Moka pot (6801). You get Italian style and engineering, as well as superb durability. Plus, this is a nine-cup stovetop espresso maker that looks at home in your kitchen and in the woods. This is why it’s the best Moka pot you can get.

FAQs

A Moka pot is better if you don’t want to deal with as much sediment in your coffee and you generally prefer espresso and similar drinks. However, you shouldn’t think a coffee press is inferior to a Moka pot. It just brews different coffee that’s more flavorful than drip, and there is more sediment.

You can use any coffee beans in a moka pot, but traditional Italian Moka coffee uses darker-roast beans. Look for beans called espresso roast, Italian roast, or French roast. Medium roast coffee can also make a beautiful cup of Moka, but be aware that the Moka pot will extract more, stronger flavor from your beans than a pour over or drip. As a rule of thumb, any coffee beans you like in espresso will be delicious in your Moka pot.

No, you cannot use espresso grind in a moka pot. Espresso grind is much too fine for the Moka pot and can plug up under pressure, causing your pot’s relief valve to open and release all the steam. Use a medium-fine to fine grind, but not as fine as you would in an espresso machine.

No, Moka coffee is not as strong as espresso. To help you understand why, it’s best to compare these brewing styles to drip coffee. Due to greater pressure, heat, and a heavily packed puck, an espresso shot made in an espresso machine is up to eight times stronger than drip or pour over coffee. A Moka pot is less packed and uses far less pressure, making the brew up to three times stronger than drip.

A good size Moka pot for 1 person is a 1-cup or 3-cup. The Moka pot brews about 2oz of coffee per cup – about the size of an espresso shot. Because the coffee is more concentrated, one or two cups should be enough for one person.

References
  1. Harlan, J. (2019, August 14). What Cookware Is Compatible With Induction Cooktops? Retrieved from https://www.thespruceeats.com/what-is-the-best-cookware-for-induction-cooktops-908920
  2. Does Aluminum Rust? (2015, June 18). Retrieved From https://www.allmetalsfab.com/does-aluminum-rust/
  3. General Properties of stainless steel. (n.d.). Retrieved From http://www.uginox.com/en/node/370
  4. Difference Between Stainless Steel 304 and 430: thyssenkrupp Materials (UK). (n.d.). Retrieved From https://www.thyssenkrupp-materials.co.uk/the-difference-between-stainless-steel-304-and-430.html
  5. How does a coffee percolator work? (2019, August 28). Retrieved From https://www.scienceabc.com/eyeopeners/what-is-a-coffee-percolator-and-how-does-it-work.html
coffee pouring our of a moka pot
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