The best 12 cup coffee makers are made to handle large volumes of coffee and support longer usage than other machines. Generally, you can expect these machines to be solid and more reliable than the alternatives. In times past, we brewed coffee ourselves, a kettle or a pot full of water, a lit stove and a bag of freshly ground beans. In today’s modern world, we have machines that take care of that for us, so we can tend to more pressing matters rather than sitting by a stove, waiting for the coffee to be ready.
There is a catch though. With so many products on the market, so many manufacturers, models and overall choice, how do you know which one to buy? In this review we will focus on the larger 12-cup coffee makers. The last thing you want happening is running out of coffee, especially when you have friends, relatives, or both over. Being the “coffee guy” is not exactly the best way to spend your time.
One last thing to note… there is a lot of choice out there, with machines that can suit the needs of any and all customers. From the cheapest to the most expensive, from the simplest to the most complicated, all you need to do is browse around, compare and settle on the one that you feel is right for you.
12 Cup Coffee Maker Comparison Table
Best 12 Cup Coffee Maker Reviews
*** Recommended *** Oster 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker BVST-JBXSS41 – Stainless Steel by Oster
A coffee maker that looks like something ripped out of a 50’s “home of the future” attraction. That is the aesthetic that made the Oster BVST-JBXSS41 a popular and desirable domestic coffee maker. It has a rather interesting and detailed programmable user interface, a 12 cup capacity, and all the features that you could ever want from a domestic coffee maker.
In regards to the price tag, it is among the more affordable and accessible coffee makers on the market, even though it does not really look the part, often times leading people to believe that its price is higher on first impression. From a technical point of view, it is a solid machine, everything arranged in an easily accessible way if repairs need to be done, all the components being easily sourced or repaired.
One of the more interesting aspects of this coffee maker is the actual coffee that it brews. It uses finer filters when filtering the coffee, making it a lot smoother and a more enjoyable, while at the same time making it easier for the coffee to pass through into the server without the risk of clogging.
One last note that can be made is the fact that it is one of the most durable coffee makers in the market. The metallic body being able to absorb shocks and blows, while the inner works of the unit being able to function properly without any risks. The only vulnerable component of this unit being the server, which can be easily and cheaply replaced if broken.
Overall the Oster is a nice coffee maker and easy to use. It can complement any kitchen décor or setup because of its metallic silver body.
Proctor Silex 12-Cup Coffee Maker, Black (43502)
The Proctor Silex is an entry level 12-cup coffee maker, designed to be simple and affordable. It’s cheap, easy to maintain, and it is even dishwasher safe, meaning that you will not have to clean the basket or carriage by hand in the sink.
One of the biggest upsides is the fact that it is the cheapest 12-cup coffee maker on the market with an auto pause and serve function. The function itself is crudely implemented, but it does what it is supposed to do.
One last thing that can be said about the Proctor Silex is the fact that it comes with a slight disadvantage when compared to other coffee makers on the market. It is the kind of coffee maker that needs frequent cleaning and maintenance done to it, otherwise the risk of clogging and breakdowns can become a real problem. Overall it is the affordable and inexpensive alternative on the market, for people that are perhaps not really that much into coffee and still want to have the means to brew it without having to go through complicated processes.
Mr. Coffee 12 Cup Programmable Modern Design with Chrome Front Coffeemaker
Mr. Coffee is one of the coffee makers that is in the more affordable and accessible price bracket, without looking like it. It sports a rather generous user input interface, with various programs, options and choices that can be made in order to essentially tweak the cup of coffee that you will be having to a rather fine extent.
Visually, this coffee maker looks and feels like an elegant piece of machine that would fit in well with more technologically-inclined kitchen designs, sporting the signature dark red color scheme that is bound to go well with manykitchen decors. This coffee maker really shies when it is time to be used. Making good use of all its settings and features, Mr. Coffee is able to brew a cup of coffee just the way you want it, without having to even be in the same room, offering a large degree of freedom and comfort.
There are a couple of downsides that must be taken into account. Firstly, the basket and carriage are not dishwasher safe, often times being damaged by the water jets. Second, the unit itself is often difficult to fit into pre-made kitchen assemblies. This is due to its non-standard dimensions, so if you were planning on making it fit into pre-designed spaces, you may not be successful.
Overall, Mr. Coffee is a nice addition to any kitchen, especially if you enjoy a nice relaxing cup of coffee in the morning.
KRUPS EC311 SAVOY Programmable Digital Coffee Maker Machine with Glass Carafe and LED Control Panel, 12-Cups, Black
The Krups EC311 Savoy is another low-priced 12-cup coffee maker, however this one comes with a coupe of twists. First and foremost, the shape and size of the coffeemaker is reminiscent of 90’s appliances where the unibodied look and miniaturization ideas were quite common. And right out of the box you will notice that it is strangely smaller than the regular 12-cup coffee makers on the market. This is because the designers at Krups actually integrated the water tank into the inner-frame of the coffee maker, thus being able to reduce the overall size of the machine.
Another interesting thing is the fact that the user interface is minimalistic, making it overall more friendly towards users that are not technologically inclined, while at the same time keeping its elegant and sleek aesthetic look. The unit itself is pretty simple and straight-forward, a simple coffee maker that is able to deliver an air of elegance and modern décor along with a nice hot fresh cup of coffee.
One of the things that the Krups EC311 does not excel at is structural integrity. The machine itself is sturdy and durable in the context of normal and recommended use. When it comes to rough shipping or harsh usage conditions, the unit tends to vulnerable to damage. It is, however easily fixed and can resume things as they were with minimal interruptions.
BELLA 14108 Linea Collection 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker, Red
The Bella 1391 Linea Collection coffee maker is one of the more advanced and more refined coffee makers for its price point. While it is in the affordable and accessible price bracket, it is certainly a machine that can surpass all the others in its bracket. First and foremost, you will notice right out of the box that the Bella 1391 is incredibly easy to use. Just select the coffee type that you want and let the unit do the rest. This is one of the major advantages with Linea Collection products, they are incredibly easy to use and add that extra bit of quality along with ease of use.
The Bella 1391 takes that a bit further. Even though it is able to brew a batch of 12 cups of coffee in one go with ease, it can store enough resources for more than that. This is a nice feature, making it so you don’t have to keep juggling coffee and water when you have company. Another thing to mention about this coffee maker is the overall design. It is rather bulky and blocky when compared to other coffee makers in this price bracket. However unlike the rest of them, this one feels sturdy, capable and resilient.
It is technically sound, easily repairable and the integration of the features is made in an optimal and efficient manner.
Overall this is a step up from average coffee makers, even though it is in the same price bracket, and it can be a welcome addition to any kitchen, either domestic or professional.
OXO On 12 Cup Coffee Maker with Removable Kettle
The Oxo On is a clear step up in terms of pricing and specs. First of all, it is a very expensive and very highly rated machine, a coffee maker that is mostly used in commercial spaces and professional settings. It is able to brew around 12 cups of coffee, however it can take a lot of abuse in terms of constant brewing and consumption.
In regards to the design, it is pretty bare-boned. Simply put it is reminiscent of 1930’s coffee brewing apparatuses in its design but updated and technologically advanced for the current age. Its difficulty of usage matches its design. It’s very easy to use, the vast majority of interactions that the user will have with the coffee maker being centered on one central button.
Maintenance and cleaning is easy enough with this unit because of its simplistic design. Even though there are a lot of small surfaces, the unit can be easily cleaned and maintained without having to worry about anything else. The fact that the unit is made primarily out of stainless steel is also a great improvement over the rest of the units on the market, preventing structural damage and corrosion as well as various other problems that tend to appear with plastic cased units.
One of the most important features that this unit brings to the table is its ability to handle multiple types of coffee, from the most unrefined to the most refined, without requiring any modifications or adjustments. Seeing as this unit is designed to handle large workloads, worrying about breakdowns is not really a thing however in case something does happen to it, repair work can be done at services and repair stations that are approved by the manufacturer.
Overall, the Oxo On is a rather expensive but very high quality coffee maker that can suit your needs for a long time to come without having to worry about compromising the quality of the coffee itself.
BUNN 33200.0015 VPR-2GD 12-Cup Pourover Commercial Coffee Brewer with Upper and Lower Warmers and Two Glass Decanters, Black
The Bunn 33200.0015 VPR-2GD or “The Bunn” as it is more affectionately known, is a commercially orientated coffee maker that can also be used in a domestic kitchen. Initially designed to be used in small restaurants and diners, The Bunn was designed to handle not only multiple brewing cycles but also multiple servers at the same time, brewing coffee in one of the servers while keeping the rest warm.
There are a lot of extra add-ons and accessories available for this unit, ranging from extra servers and extra hot plates, to essentially a second unit all together that attaches to the first one. The design is made to reflect the commercial inclinations of the unit as well as the fact that it is made to handle large quantities of coffee a bit of elegance to boot.
Overall, this unit is great for households with a lot of family members that enjoy fresh coffee, and social settings where there is a lot of coffee being consumed. Alternatively, it can also serve as a great coffee solution for small commercial enterprises like a small restaurant or a diner.
12 Cup Coffee Maker Selection Guide
There are a lot of products on the market, and figuring which one is right for you and your household can be a bit tricky. There are, however, some simple steps and concepts that you can follow in order to make the selection process a lot easier.
What are your household needs?
This is by far one of the most important and at the same time underestimated questions that you can ask. The idea is rather simple and straightforward. The more people in your household, the more coffee that will be consumed overall. However, you will have to take into account that some members are more likely to drink more coffee than others, so you will have to factor that in as well.
If it’s just you, or just you and a significant other, or maybe a roommate, then you might as well be looking at the cheaper, affordable and simpler models. Form this point of view, you don’t need much more than that. If you have a family of 4 or 5, you might be looking to get a medium priced one to make sure that the machine itself will handle the prolonged usage.
One last thing to note is that you will also have to think about how the household will clean and maintain the unit itself. This is done to understand the risk of clogging or breakdown. If you belive the unit will be well maintained, the advantages of a higher priced unti makes sense otherwise you might lean towards one of the value models.
What kind of coffee will you be brewing?
There are multiple kinds of coffee, some finer than others, some more expensive than others, and so on. A true coffee enthusiast knows that the coffee that he or she drinks must meet his or her standards every single time, and that the coffee maker in question must be able to do just that, brew the coffee perfectly. That being said, before heading out and buying a coffee maker, make sure to know the right conditions for your favorite coffee to be properly brewed.
Note the filter density, the water temperature, even the drip rate required to preserve the flavor just the way you want it. A small note here, usually the more conditions that have to be met in order to brew the coffee as you want it to be brewed, the more expensive the machines tend to get. It is also worth keeping in mind that there is always the option of adding certain elements, or changing things like filters or baskets around in order to get the conditions just right for the coffee of your choice, however there are some things that you will not be able to adjust, like the temperature and the drip rate, so it might be worth looking out for the customization aspect as well.
One final thing to keep in mind here is the fact that the coffee maker will have to be able to keep the coffee of your choice warm and fresh as long as possible. However some coffee makers offer separate add-ons and extras that can do that, so it is worth looking out for those as well.
How much usage will the unit see?
Being frugal is a good thing… and picking out a coffee maker is an occasion to be just that. There is no reason to buy the most expensive coffee makers on the market if you will not be drinking coffee regularly.
However if you and your household enjoy drinking coffee often, then you might want to invest into a more expensive and better quality unit that can handle this kind of usage without letting the quality of the coffee be compromised.
Another thing worth mentioning is the fact that if the unit in question does not get enough usage, it will start functioning in a defective manner over time, not to mention that different systems in the unit will be affected by prolonged periods of time without usage.
Overall, as a general rule of thumb, the more usage a coffee maker will see, the more you will likely want to invest. The higher end models add features and/or aesthetics while not altering the taste of the coffee or suffering breakdowns over time.
Choosing a coffee maker is not exactly an easy thing to do. There are a lot of units on the market, from the cheapest ones imaginable to the most expensive commercial ones, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. The best recommendations for an average household of 4, all 4 drinking moderate amounts of coffee would be the Oster BVST-JBXSS41.
It is incredibly versatile, capable of handling a rather wide array of coffees, and it is able to do so without any strain or impacting quality or taste. It can easily be integrated into any kitchen, and it can blend in with any kind of domestic décor. The main advantage this unit has over all the rest is that even though it looks a bit bulky, it is incredibly easy to repair and maintain, as long as it is kept clean.
The only thing that you would ever have to worry about while using this unit is running out of coffee because it actually uses all the coffee that you put in it properly, so if you want to brew a second batch, you will have to change the coffee in the basket. Overall, every single household is different and every single individual has different wants and needs. Make sure you pay close attention to the needs of your household as well as your own in order to properly pick out the proper coffee machine.