Imagine that heavenly aroma of freshly brewed coffee first thing in the morning; warm, enticing, innervating.
But what you certainly do not want in your first enriching and spectacular cup of coffee in the morning is any type of plastic or other potentially harmful chemicals and artificial agents leeching in your java.
Unfortunately, this is a reality for some coffee-lovers out there. Their coffee makers are brewing up more than they bargained for. Leaving behind not just a curious plastic taste in their morning cuppa, but also toxins like BPA which has some potential carcinogenic effects.
Is there anything we as coffee-drinkers can do to avoid the potential threat of toxins like BPA?
Yes, there is. You are in luck because today we will take a look at nine spectacular coffee makers that are plastic-free!
Not only that but we will explore the pros and cons of plastic-free coffee makers. We will also take a closer look at what exactly these harmful plastics are all about and why avoiding them is only in your best interest.
Keep reading to see a keen selection of the 9 best plastic-free coffee makers to add to your kitchen today!
- The 8 best plastic-free coffee makers
- Why choose a plastic-free coffee maker?
- How to choose a plastic-free coffee maker
- Stainless Steel Coffee Makers
- Glass Coffee Makers
- Frequently asked questions
The 8 best plastic-free coffee makers
I certainly would not leave you high and dry wondering what coffee makers are safe for you and your coffee needs. So I have compiled a list of top-rated and popular plastic-free coffee makers on the market right now.
Take a look and you may find your new toxin-free coffee brewing device right here, right now!
Starting off our list we have this superb stainless steel coffee maker courtesy of Cuisinart. This is a truly spectacular machine. Fully automatic and programmable, this coffee maker can whip up brews controlled by you from regular to bold. Not only that but it is plastic-free, no toxins leeching into your cup whether you like it regular or bold.
While most coffee makers have a 10- or 12-cup capacity, the Cuisinart DCC-3200 provides a bit more volume by producing 14 “full” cups of high-quality coffee.
The DCC-3200 features a cone-shaped filter basket, a brew strength selection, and a customized brew setting for 5-20 oz servings, allowing you to adjust the brew to your preferences with a reasonable degree of personalization.
This superb glass coffee maker is a state-of-the-art item that is sure to be the star of your morning coffee ritual. This item’s key feature is a really keen automatic serve and pause system which allows you to brew, serve, brew, and repeat. Hamilton Beach is a leader of the coffee machine world and you are in good hands with the plastic-free unit.
You can program the Hamilton Beach Programmable Coffee Maker up to 24 hours ahead of time, ensuring that you never miss your coffee wake-up call. You can choose from bold, regular, or 1-4 cup brewing options with this coffee maker. With the auto pause and serve option, you can pour your first cup before the brewing process is finished without compromising taste or making a mess. You can rest easy with the 2-hour automatic shutoff. Cord storage eliminates tangles on the countertop.
The OXO is a stupendous plastic-free coffee machine that synthesizes a pour-over style with a more modern automatic coffee maker’s mechanic aesthetic. Not only is it a chic and interesting coffee maker but it is outfitted with a double-walled, vacuum-insulated thermal carafe pot. This allows your coffee to remain hot but won’t risk burning it or turning it bitter as one may experience with a hotplate.
The 8-Cup Coffee Maker is certified by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) for meeting its rigorous home brewing standards.
If you are a traveler, this coffee maker can also make a single cup of coffee for you to take with you in your favorite travel mug. Simply remove the well cover to make room for tall travel mugs or flip it over to elevate shorter cups.
BUNN has done it again by rolling out this spectacular glass brewer. Plastic-free and sporting a truly fresh drip-free glass decanter, this unit is sure to be the star of your kitchen. The Bunn GRW is also outfitted with a nuanced stainless steel internal brewing system ensuring absolutely no plastic leeches into your brews.
The BUNN is one of the fastest coffee maker and it is able to brew 4 to 10 cups (20 to 50 oz.) in about 3 minutes.
BUNN’s innovative carafe spout is a game changer. Now when you pour, coffee goes where it should: into the cup and not on your counter.
As its name suggests, this item is a chic, sheer, sleek, and cunning customer clad in black. Just like a real ninja. But it is also outfitted with a great advanced options menu for brewing styles like Classic and Rich.
A cool feature it sports is also the 24-hour preparation option that lets you ready your coffee in advance. This is particularly great for those early-risers who may be too tired to brew when they wake up, and instead opt for overnight automatic brewing.
Ninjas are usually up all night, so they must need their morning rest to recoup from nocturnal espionage. Or so we assume!
Another interesting feature is the removable water reservoire so to easily fill in with water carrying it to the sink.
The future is now with this wifi-enabled coffee maker. Plastic-free and with a handsome design to boot, the Cafe is a special brewer for sure. Okay, other brewers have some great smart features but this coffee maker can be hooked up to Google Home or Alexa and controlled with your voice. Talk about futuristic! Not only is it futuristic and controlled by your voice like a robotic barista, but it is also plastic-free.
This smart, 10-cup coffee maker retains your favorite settings for number of cups, temperature, and brew strength, so you can personalize every cup to your specific taste whether you’re producing 1 cup or a big pot.
You can wake up to fresh, hot, perfectly tailored coffee that’s ready exactly when you set it to be when you utilize the auto brew feature.
Another great piece from Cuisinart, this modern item looks great and features a charcoal filter along with its stainless steel design. Programmable for up to 24 hours, a handy light comes on every time you fill up your cup.
Under the coffee dispenser, a removable water reservoir and drip tray make it simple to set up throughout your hectic morning.
The big reservoir can help you to prepare coffee for all the family. A built-in charcoal water filter and a permanent gold-tone basket-style filter are included and will make the filters more durable
Here we have SYBO’s fabulously designed coffee maker and one that is free of plastic. Stainless steel and equipped with two alternative coffee pots, this machine can prepare coffee quickly, conveniently, freshly, and free of any plastic-leeching. SYBO’s commercial drip machine is ideal for those who like their coffee cafe or diner style.
It is a fast coffee maker that brews a full pot of coffee in less than 10 minutes.
This coffee maker is equipped with inventive lid and spout design that arcs the coffee pour into the cup and wicks the dribbles back into the coffee pot, preventing a mess on the cup or counter.
Why choose a plastic-free coffee maker?
Some readers may be wondering, “but why should I choose a plastic-free coffee maker?”, the reasons may surprise you!
As it turns out, when plastic is exposed to heat, like the hot water in your coffee maker, it can leech into your coffee. This can happen as the water from the reservoir passes through the tubes inside the machine, or as the hot water sprays onto the grounds, which may be held in a plastic filter basket.
This doesn’t just give your coffee a peculiar plastic taste, but it can also leech Bisphenol A or BPA into your coffee.
BPA is an endocrine disrupter that can potentially lead to infertility and certain types of cancer. This is why the safest option is to opt for no plastic at all! Stainless steel and glass are two of the best options on the market right now for coffee brewing devices that are free from plastic.
How to choose a plastic-free coffee maker
When choosing a plastic-free coffee maker there are some key details to watch out for. The first of course is that your machine is absolutely plastic-free. This goes for the pot, to the water reservoir, to even the basket for the coffee grounds. The basket for grounds especially, because sometimes the whole machine itself may be BPA-free, but the filter basket might sneak in with some toxin-spreading plastic.
The next details to be keen on include what coffee style you would like to choose from. What I mean is do you like an automatic machine as they sport in kitschy diners, or would you prefer a more hands-on method of preparing your morning joe? This distinction can lead to many different coffee machine options for you!
While I have highlighted some great automatic and home brewers, there is a lot of charm and fun in more manual brewers like pour-over carafes and pots. Many pour-over brewers are made from ceramic or glass and are BPA-free.
Let’s look a little closer at some specifics of the plastic-free coffee makers overall and why their materials may influence your overall decision.
- Glass: A great option for those who are planning on drinking their brew right away. Glass pots have the drawback of losing heat a bit faster than stainless steel. Most automatic machines are outfitted with a glass coffee pot, and many manual brewers are glass, from Dutch Brew towers to French Presses. But they are a classic mode of coffee preparation and are BPA-free.
- Stainless steel: Usually stainless steel comprises the body of a coffee maker while the pot may continue to be glass. However, there are a few machines that sport a stainless steel pot or carafe out there on the market. They hold the benefit of retaining heat longer and are great for those who like to brew in advance but drink a little later on after brewing. Cleaning stainless steel can at times be a bit of a hassle, and some items may need to be soaked in a special cleaning solution. Otherwise, some are even dishwasher safe. Be sure to check with the manufacturer or check the box before you try running anything in the dishwasher, though!
BPA: what is it and how much of it is in coffee makers?
As mentioned above BPA is an abbreviation for Bisphenol A. Bisphenol A is a chemical compound that is mass-produced and used to make plastic items, objects, and materials, a lot of which can find their way into our food and beverages and into our bodies.
It has been used since the ’50s and is used to make all sorts of everyday plastic items including food containers, and yup, you guessed it, coffee makers.
BPA is colorless and odorless but for folks who have brewed with a plastic coffee maker, the plastic taste is undeniable. It can also lead to lots of potential health problems, too.
Fertility issues are one of the major complications associated with BPA. Infertility can come as a result of too much BPA intake. Not only that but like many other plastics, BPA may be carcinogenic and can potentially lead to heart disease, obesity, and diabetes.
Needless to say, BPA poses some substantial threats to our health and overall wellbeing. The best option to avoid BPA in your coffee is to avoid plastic coffee makers by choosing a non-plastic brewer. That and storing your coffee beans in a glass or food-grade stainless steel container rather than a plastic one, too!
Stainless Steel Coffee Makers
We have touched base a bit about the different materials that can be sought out for coffee makers other than plastic. Let me explore a little more about one of the best options out there right now; stainless steel.
Stainless steel coffee makers are a superb choice with lots of models on the market from BUNN to Hamilton Beach. Stainless steel makers, as mentioned above, might be constructed with a chic, sharp, and glamorous stainless steel body while maintaining a glass brewing pot or carafe. Machines or brewers like this are great options, too, as are the models that sport a stainless steel pot instead.
If you are in the market for more manual brewers, then choose food-grade stainless steel coffee filters for pour-over pots or even the classic Moka pot. The Moka pot’s body, chambers, and even coffee filter components are all made from steel.
Glass Coffee Makers
Glass coffee makers refer to the coffee pot carafe in coffee machines or to manual brewers like the French Press or carafe for pour-over coffee. When it comes to coffee machines, most items on the market will feature a glass pot regardless of it is an automatic machine or a manual brewer.
Just be sure that the machine itself is mostly comprised of stainless steel or other non-plastic materials otherwise you will run into the same issue of having BPA leech into your coffee!
As for the manual brewers like French Press cylinders, most of these brewers are comprised of glass or food-grade stainless steel. But to be sure, always check the packaging to make sure you are not getting any plastic parts in your brewers.
Glass items are great because you can see and gauge your coffee volumes and just genuinely admire your fresh java. But be aware that glass cools very quickly, and so a hot pad or heating tray is a must if you plan to delay your coffee enjoyment a little bit.
Frequently asked questions
Do BUNN coffee makers have plastic parts?
The majority of BUNN coffee makers are BPA-free. However, most BUNN coffee makers contain parts that are constructed from polypropylene and silicone rubber. These do not leech BPA into the coffee and the hot water only touches these parts for a few milliseconds. Though be aware that some BUNN coffee makers’ grounds filters might be plastic. But have no fear, they can be replaced by a stainless steel grounds filter courtesy of BUNN instead.
Is the plastic found in coffee makers safe?
Some plastic in coffee makers is safe. Or rather, safer than BPA. Not all plastics contain or leech any BPA. Some safe plastics are polypropylene, silicone, and ABS plastic, all of which are safe to use. Additionally, some plastic parts of the coffee maker do not come in contact with the hot water or final brewed coffee either and so pose no danger. But if you would feel safer opting for no plastic at all, then seek out a glass brewer or stainless steel brewer instead of one containing any plastic.
Is there an automatic drip coffee maker without plastic parts?
For those in search of a plastic or BPA-free automatic drip coffee maker, you are in luck! There are quite a few models out there on the market, many of which we have been detailed above. Some choice machines include;
- BUNN VP17-1SS
A great plastic-free automatic drip coffee maker courtesy of BUNN. This amazing machine is made from stainless steel and can whip up a dozen cups of coffee in under 3 minutes. Talk about a dynamo of caffeine!
- Technivorm Moccamaster Auto
A unique design accompanies this stainless steel and glass automatic drip coffee maker. This item allows you to set the strength of your coffee to give you some variation in the morning.
- Breville Precision Brewer Thermal Coffee Maker
Another machine that offers a unique, chic, sheer, and plastic-free design. The Breville looks great and offers something a little different with the stainless steel pot rather than the typical glass one. Regardless, this coffee maker is set to brew up choice and BPA-free brews.
What kind of plastic is used in coffee makers?
A truly prescient question, the plastic used in coffee makers is not created equal. Some of the plastic used in coffee makers is BPA, the more dangerous and toxic variety that is used in a plethora of other objects and items. Other plastics used in coffee makers include ABS plastic, polypropylene, and silicone rubber. These varieties are food-grade and only make contact with the hot water for short intervals. Check the packaging or the product’s official website for more specific information about what, if any, plastic is used in the coffee maker you are considering purchasing.
What is the healthiest coffee maker?
Of all the coffee makers on the market the healthiest, and by healthiest, we mean the one most free of harmful toxins like BPA would be the Cuisinart Stainless Steel Coffee Maker.
Why is this machine such a healthy pick?
Well, besides the stainless steel body, it also has a keen charcoal filtration system that further enhances the healthiness while keeping toxins and impurities at bay.
For those seeking an even healthier alternative, we suggest looking into manual brewers like the ones for pour-over or the French Press (read the article about how to make coffee with a French press for more). Why? These brewers are simple in design, mainly being cylinders or carafes, and because of that are mainly just glass and some stainless steel! No tubes, coffee ground baskets, or any potential plastics whatsoever.
Coffee is one of the healthiest beverages out there. It can help our internal organs eep some nasty illness at bay, and offers tons of antioxidants. Not only that but coffee smells and tastes great, and also gives us that extra energy and mood kick that most of us rely on to get through the day.
The potential threat of BPA does not mean we have to swear off our morning java, and by extension, these great health boosts. Far from it, instead, we just need to be conscientious consumers and maybe do a little homework before we commit to purchasing a new coffee machine or brewing vessel. That little bit of extra research can go a long way!
I hope this article can help you choose only the healthiest and plastic-free brewer out there. The best plastic-free coffee maker is out there waiting to make your next cup of coffee the happiest, and the healthiest!
Giacomo is an Italian living in Shanghai since 2016. After working as a barista in Italy, he started to be more interested in the different types of coffee, beans, and the ways to prepare this ancient beverage. He founded Authority Coffee and he is currently on a mission to find the best coffee in China.