Ninja Coffee Makers have grown to be a popular choice among people who prefer to make their coffee at home. Whether you like a classic cup of coffee, iced coffee, or a specialty drink like a cappuccino or latte, Ninja’s coffee makers can do it all.
There are many Ninja coffee maker models available to buy. Each comes with its own advantages that would make you choose it over another model. So here, we will have a look at the top-rated models, their features, and how they compare to one another.
Top-Rated Ninja Coffee Makers:
Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System – Best Overall Beverage Brewer for Coffee and Tea:
The Hot and Cold Brewed System is the most versatile brewer you’ll find, from Ninja or other brands. Packed with features to make an array of coffee and tea drinks, hot or cold, in a variety of serving sizes.
- Brew hot or cold coffee and tea.
- Choose from 6 sizes including single cup, mug, travel mug, half carafe, or full carafe.
- Choose from 5 brewing options: Classic, Rich, Over Ice, Cold Brew, or Specialty.
- Includes individual baskets for coffee and tea brewing, to keep flavors separate.
- Smart Basket Recognition: the system will automatically recognize the inserted basket (coffee or tea) and display the drink menu accordingly.
- No pod system: you can use your favorite coffee ground, loose tea, or even bagged tea.
- Tea type selection: select your tea type and the machine will adjust water temperature and steep time accordingly. You can choose from herbal, black, Oolong, White, and Green.
- Built-in milk frother turns hot or cold milk into frothy milk to enjoy with specialty drinks.
- Includes a 50 oz carafe.
Brew Style Explanation:
So, this machine gives you a nice number of brewing styles, but what are they exactly?
Classic is just what it sounds – a nice classic brew with a smooth and balanced flavor.
Rich is steeped a bit longer to give you a bolder tasting brew.
Specialty is a special brew style that produces a rich and concentrated 4 oz brew similar to a shot of espresso in specialty drinks like lattes or cappuccinos.
Over Ice is designed to brew either coffee or tea directly over ice for a nice chilled beverage. When choosing this brew style, the machine will brew at double-strength, so when the ice melts, your drink will not taste watered down.
Cold Brew is a great option that brews your coffee or tea using low temperature instead of hot water. As you know, Cold Brew is traditionally made overnight, using cold or room temperature water. With this Ninja Brewer, it will brew using lower temperatures within 10 to 15 minutes depending on the cup size you choose.
The fold-away frother is a nice addition to the machine which allows you to froth either hot or cold milk for your specialty drink. But do keep in mind that this is a whisk-like frother only, so it does not heat your milk. For hot froth, you’ll have to first heat your milk than froth it.
Who is the Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System for?
Of course, this brewer would make perfect sense for anyone who enjoys both coffee and tea drinks in all their varieties. There is not a coffee or tea beverage that this machine won’t make.
And you can make them in any size you want, starting from a single cup and up to a carafe. So it’s great for either a single user, a family, or when entertaining guests.
If you’re not a tea drinker, then this choice would not make much sense. There are other Ninja coffee maker models that will do most of what this brewer does in terms of coffee brewing, but the only feature you’ll miss is the Cold Brew option, which is only available in this brewer.
Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker – Best 10-Cup Ninja Coffee Maker:
If coffee is your only beverage of choice, then the Specialty Coffee Maker is what you should be considering. You’ll get multiple brew sizes, different brew styles, and a built-in milk frother to take your specialty drinks to next level.
- Select from 4 brewing styles: Classic, Rich, Iced Coffee, and Specialty.
- Select from 6 serving sizes: single cup, XL single cup, travel mug, XL travel mug, half carafe, and full carafe.
- SCA Golden Cup certified machine: this machine is certified to brew to the Golden Cup standard set by the Specialty Coffee Association. This means that the Nina Specialty Coffee Maker has even saturation, perfect coffee blooming time, and brews with a consistent temperature.
- Built-in milk frother.
- Available with either a glass carafe/warming plate or thermal carafe.
Who Should Buy the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker?
This machine is a great choice for any coffee drinker, either a single user or for multiple users. If SCA Golden Cup certification matters to you, this one is the only Ninja Brewer that has this certification.
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker has it all multiple serving sizes, brew options, and thanks to its SCA certification, it is guaranteed to brew you an excellent cup.
Ninja Single Serve Coffee Maker – The Best No Pod Single Serve Coffee Machine:
Now let’s say you want multiple servings and different brewing options but you don’t really need to brew carafe sizes. This model is a great choice for anyone who wants to brew single servings (of different sizes), and unlike most single-serve coffee makers, this one does not require any special pods, just use your favorite coffee ground.
- Brew single-cup only – no carafe option.
- Choose from 4 cup sizes: cup, XL cup, travel mug, and XL travel mug.
- Choose from 5 brew styles: Classic, Rich, Over Ice, Specialty (4 oz), and Cafe Forte (8 oz).
- Built-in milk frother.
- No pods are required. Use your favorite coffee ground with the included permanent filter.
What Is “Cafe Forte” Coffee Setting?
Cafe Forte is designed to produce a stronger cup of coffee in a small 8 oz size. So it’s somewhere between the Rich option and Specialty, which produces a really strong concentration of 4 oz coffee.
Cafe Forte is available in previous Ninja coffee maker models only and is not available in newer models like the Hot and Cold Brewed system and the Specialty coffee maker.
Who Should Buy the Ninja Single-Serve Coffee Maker?
Anyone who wants to brew a single cup at a time but does not want anything to do with pods. The Ninja Single Serve machine allows you to brew multiple cup sizes using your favorite coffee ground.
Ninja Coffee Maker Comparisons:
Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed vs. Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker
- The first major difference is: Hot and Cold Brewed can brew both coffee and tea drinks, while Ninja Specialty is for coffee only.
- When it comes to coffee brewing, Hot and Cold Brewed has 5 brewing options and Specialty has 4 options. The additional option in Hot and Cold Brewed is Cold Brew.
- Serving sizes and capacity is the same in both models. You get 6 serving sizes and a 50 oz water reservoir.
- Both machines have a built-in milk frother.
Which Ninja Coffee Maker is Best For Iced Coffee?
If making iced coffee drinks is an important thing to you, you’ll be happy to know that the Over Ice option is available in all Ninja coffee makers mentioned above.
Using Over Ice, you’ll be able to brew a stronger than average brew that never tastes watered down when mixed with ice.
With the Hot and Cold Brewed coffee maker, you’ll get a Cold Brew option for making fresh cold brew coffee or tea, in any serving size you want, in as little as 10 minutes.
Traditionally, Cold brew takes over 8 to 24 hours to brew and chill in the fridge. So this would be a great solution for you to get your cold brew fix as quickly as possible.
Is Ninja Coffee Maker Better Than Keurig?
For a long time, Keurig has been the leading brand for single-serve coffee makers. The brand is known for its amazing versatility when it comes to coffee pods compatible with their machines. K-Cup pods are available from major brands and different beverages such as coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and more.
While this is what made Keurig popular, so customers found the recurring purchase of pods to be troublesome over time, or thought it could get expensive. This is where a machine like Ninja’s Single-Serve coffee maker (Which uses ground coffee only) would be a better choice.
The thing is, Keurig and Ninja coffee makers are totally different things. Nina’s machine uses ground coffee only, while Keurig has some machines that use pods only and others that can use both ground coffee and pods (but for single-serve brewing, you can only use pods).
Which machine is best would totally depend on what you want from a coffee maker or a brewer:
- Ninja’s Hot and Cold Brewed is the ultimate choice for any coffee or tea drink that can cross your mind. Hot or Cold, using your favorite coffee ground or loose/bagged tea.
- If you care about getting the best out of your coffee ground, the Ninja Specialty, which is certified by the Specialty Coffee Association, is programmed to brew with precise measures of bloom time, contact time, and water temperature.
If you want a Keurig that would be comparable to Ninja’s machines, in terms of being able to brew a single cup as well as a full carafe, then you’ll want the Keurig K-Duo, which allows you to:
- Brew up to a 12-cup carafe using any coffee ground you like.
- Or brew a single cup (6, 8, 10, or 12 oz) using a K-Cup pod. If you want to use ground coffee for single-serve brewing, you can use a refillable pod filter.
Specialty Coffee Drinks:
When it comes to preparing drinks like Cappuccino, Latte, or Macchiato… this is an area where Ninja coffee makers excel over Keurig.
To start, Ninja’s machine has a Specialty brewing option that brews a coffee concentrate that imitates espresso (but it’s not exactly espresso). Then, it has a built-in milk frothing whisk to create a nice creamy froth.
On the other hand, Keurig’s specialty drinks come packed in a pod. Pods usually contain all ingredients for a cappuccino or latte (powdered milk, coffee, and probably a whole lot of sugar and ingredients you don’t want to drink).
Keurig’s espresso pods, which is also not real espresso but a coffee concentrate, would be a waste of money if you use them frequently just to brew 4 oz of coffee.
So if you plan on making a lot of specialty coffee drinks, definitely ditch the pods and go a Ninja machine. Better yet, if you don’t plan on making drip coffee, then consider a single-serve espresso machine that will make you a real shot espresso.