When it comes to brewing coffee at home, many aficionados prefer the use of a percolator because of the bold, extra-strong taste — but they're not all created equal. The best electric percolators will not only make your coffee piping-hot, but it will also give it a robust flavor that some find unmatched by drip coffee makers. Although they may not be as popular as more modern processes, percolators (both electric and stove-top) are readily available from many large retailers. However, as with most things, it's important to know what to look for before you shop.
For starters, you'll need to narrow down a suitable size to complement your lifestyle and needs. The capacity of a standard percolator typically ranges between 2 cups and 12 cups, with larger percolator urns (which work similarly) trending upwards of 45 cups or more. An additional thing to think about when buying a percolator is its speed. Many pots have the ability to produce coffee at a rate of roughly 1 cup per minute, while others utilize a much slower process — which usually leads to stronger coffee.
Once a must-have kitchen appliance in the '70s and '80s, electric percolators have recently seen a reemergence in popularity. That said, however, not much has changed over the years in terms of their design and function; most are still comprised of stainless steel and have a kettle-like appearance that uses steam to brew your coffee inside a metal basket, so you may find it hard to locate one that's colorful or contemporary. Still, they remain easy to clean and easy to use — especially since, unlike stove-top percolators, they plug right into the wall.
Although physical appearance may not be their top selling-point, there are other design aspects that you may want to pay special attention to. Safety features and conveniences such as stay-cool handles, ready-to-serve indicator lights, and detachable cords all help to make your brewing process much safer and simpler.
Now that you've got the basics, brewing yourself an incredible cup of coffee should be easier than ever before. Here are the four best electric percolators available.
1. The Best Electric Percolator, All Things Considered
This Presto coffee maker is a great overall option if you're looking for a percolator that can produce strong coffee and keep it piping hot. It's made of durable stainless steel and produces coffee quickly, percolating approximately 12 cups at a rate of 1 cup per minute. The pot, which is equipped with an indicator light, has an elegant feel and is also super easy to clean thanks to its stainless steel design. With more than 150 five-star reviews on Amazon, users seem to be in love with both its looks and quality.
Reviewers say: "We love this percolator! Very easy to use and clean. Good coffee every time."
2. The Best-Priced Percolator
The Cuisinart's renewed stainless steel coffee maker is an amazing value. Even though it's refurbished, it comes backed by a 90-day guarantee. It's quick-brewing with a 12-cup capacity and features an automatic temperature control that'll keep your coffee hot for an extended period of time. Many users are also intrigued by the pot's glass-knob top which allows you to not only hear, but also see the coffee as it creates the familiar percolating sound. The product's detachable cord and stay-cool bottom additionally allow for ultimate mobility while serving yourself and guests table-side.
Reviewers say: "I love this coffee pot. It brews quick and the smell of coffee brewing is awesome. It's very attractive and easy to clean. The thing I like the most is that the coffee is very hot."
3. The Best Small-Capacity Option
If you're looking for something to brew a small batch of coffee for a couple people, Presto's percolator may be just the thing. It has the ability to brew between 2 and 6 cups, but still comes with an automatic keep-warm control feature, ready indicator light, and detachable cord. It also has a knob, handle, and bottom that stay cool while boiling to prevent any accidental burns.
Reviewers say: "One of the best small appliance purchases I've made. It's very easy to use and clean, brews coffee quickly, and it gets the coffee very hot, which I like."
4. The Best Large-Capacity Percolator
Although it may not be a traditional percolator in terms of its shape, this Hamilton Beach coffee urn still uses a stem and percolating basket to brew its coffee — and is therefore an awesome option if you're serving dozens of people at a large gathering. It brews fast with the ability to make 1 cup per minute, and can produce between 15 to 45 cups at a time. The urn's two-way dispenser works seamlessly whether you need a single cup or continuous pour and its indicator light lets you know when things are hot and ready to serve. For $10 more, you can even opt for one with a dual-spout.
Reviewers say: "I bought this for all the guys at work to have coffee. They love this coffee maker so much they have purchased this coffee maker themselves! Great quality product for a reasonable price. I'll definitely buy this again."
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