How to Use All Types of Espresso Machine With Ease.

How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

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Coffee lovers round the world might at one time or another thought of practical ways to make their next cup of coffee in the comfort of their home. Not wanting to pay the coffee shop in their vicinity a regular visit. And most times their reasons might be solid and a coffee maker might be on their next shopping list.

An espresso machine is simply a coffee making or for better terms brewing machine. They work by forcing pressurized hot water through coffee grounds and filter to give out a concentrated cup of black coffee (also called an espresso). They can be used at home or in the coffee shop and they can be really expensive depending on model and build.

Should I get an espresso or consider other brewing techniques? I am sure you might have thought of that but ultimately when your love is a warm and well brewed cup of espresso and not anyother type, then I think a solution must be sought.

Using an espresso machine after getting one is not a difficult thing to do, you just have to get things right in terms of measurements/ratio, temperature and other theatrics making a cup of coffee requires. 

I got interested in coffee recently. Although I have drank a few beverages with coffee as part of the mix, I have never really tasted pure coffee before. I think I will try it out very soon, like real soon.

In this article I will be walking you through the process of using an espresso machine confidently because as I said before, it's easy. The hard part is getting it right with every step and that's takes practice. But what do you know, you can master it real quick.

So let's dive in.

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How to use your Espresso Machine to Brew Good Coffee.

1. The Beginning.
2. The Benefits of using an Espresso Machine
3. Super Automatic Espresso Machine.
4. Automatic Espresso Machine.
5. Semi-automatic Espresso Machine.
6. Recommendations
7. FAQ'S and Notes on Espresso Machines.

The Beginning: Setting up the Floor or Table.

When setting up your coffee making table, there are some things that you need to make the process much more smooth and give a better result.

1. Get a working Espresso Machine.

How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

When we talk about making an espresso, a good espresso machine is the starting point as we get down to business. Each type of machine work differently so I outlined how to use each type below. 

Parts and approach varies and the result varies, so let me give you a quick rundown of the type. You can skip and read through the next heading below to learn more.

Super Automatic Espresso Machine - zero expertise required, everything is automated but quality hangs on the balance depending on the grade of the machine.

Automatic Espresso Machine - you have more control over how you brew your coffee. Grinding and loading are manual but brewing is automated with a preset function on the operation panel. 

Semi-automatic Espresso Machine - everything is done by you manually or on other apparatus. From grinding to loading, tamping and brewing the coffee is totally in your control. However, you have work to do learning the brew method.

2. Source for good quality coffee beans. 

While there are a lot of coffee beans, getting the best type with the right roast is essential for any brew you plan to create. Especially when it comes to making good espressos, dark roast is the go-to for this kind of brew. 

Medium dark to dark roast can be used to brew this type of coffee as they are rich in flavor, with hint of chocolate and sugar to imbue a little sweetness.

3. Get a good Coffee Grinder and a Scale.

There are different types of grinders. Some super automatic machines come with internal powered grinders to make it easy and quick but for other type of machines a good coffee grinder is required. 

A good coffee grinder made specially for grinding espresso coffee. The best type of grinder that give the level of consistency and ground size that match espresso coffee is the burr grinder type. Other type of grinder fall short but a good Burr grinder will solve that issue.

On the other hand is having a scale. Making espresso needs correct measurement for consistent results. When your measurements are inconsistent you won't know where exactly you made a mistake and how you got it wrong.

However with a scale to measure your coffee grounds before you brew you are one step closer to getting good results everytime.

4. Espresso Machine Tamp.

Aside from super automatic machines, automatic and semi-automatic types need you to tamp the coffee grounds before you start to brew. Tamping has a technicality to it that you need to get right.

As you tamp, you should take note of these. You should not tamp with little pressure because tamping light will lead to under extraction of the coffee. On the reverse, tamping with too much pressure will lead to over extraction of the beans flavors giving some bitter taste to the coffee shot.

How to Tamp.

Grinding coffee How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

a. Load the portafilter with coffee grounds and lightly hit the portafilter on the shelf to properly sit the coffee in it.

Tamping How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

b. Properly balance the portafilter on a edge. Make it straight and properly leveled.

Tamping How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

c. Next you take your tamp and apply light pressure on the coffee grounds evenly. After that you apply more pressure until it have form a dense mass.

Fitting the portafilter How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

d. Refit the portafilter into the group head after wiping the edges and start your brewing.

Why use an Espresso Machine- the Benefits.

Espresso according to coffee lovers, has more flavor and taste than regular coffee. It is more concentrated, thick and dark. The taste might be overwhelming so most people might want to dilute it with hot water before they can drink it. 

Espresso unlike other coffee is versatile and it can be taken black or mixed up to create a lot of other drinks, from the americano and latte to the cappuccino, which a lot of people love.

Aside from that, espressos have a high amount of caffeine content per ounce beside other things making it the right choice for anyone who require a good boost at the start of the day. 

And adding to that, the smell and intense aroma it has, the health benefits available and the art of making it are some of the reason people love espresso making, you included. 

The Espresso Machine; making your next shot with the type you have.

The espresso machine came to be in the 1800s when it was birthed, built and patented by Angelo Moriondo of Turin. Luigi Bezzera a mechanic, made worthy efforts in the 1900s and greatly improved the machine and patented his improvements. 

While five years later In 1905, after laying his hands on the patent which was sold to him, the owner of La Pavoni, began commercial production of these machines. From then on, the world of coffee has forever being lit with the flame of flavors only espressos could deliver.

In our times, the espresso machine has seen lots of upgrades and functions making it essential we know the types we need before we buy. A model might have a function or compartment other models will not have. 

Also, due to a common origin, all espresso makers generally may have some parts in common and other parts differently, but each part has its function it must perform for the system to be in synergy.

And before we embark on our espresso making journey I have a question for you. What type of espresso machine did you shop for? Go through my list below and learn how to use it.

The Common types of Espresso Machine - by Operation.

Super Automatic Espresso Machine.

Espresso machine in the room How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

The super automatic espresso machine is called super automatic espresso for a reason. It basically takes away any work out of the brewing process. There are sensors, valves, pumps that automate the brewing process entirely. All you have to do is fill in the beans and wait for the coffee to come out right into your cup.

Super automatics are some people's first choice when they feel they don't want to stress themselves with making their morning coffee. But how well brewed is the coffee is one question I want to ask. 

Some of these machines can be fully programmed from grind size all the to water quantity and these type of espresso machines, exchange brew quality for ease, it may give results which may not be to your taste or match the quality you want.


  1. Very eazy to learn and use. You can make do with the product manual.
  2. Less work, all you have to do is clean up the compartments from time to time and fill up on water if the water reservoir needs filling. Some may even come with the means to be connected with the water line so you don't have to fill up manually.


  1. It can be expensive, really expensive.
  2. The super automatic machine takes away the need to manually monitor your coffee, so attimes the end product might not meet up in terms of taste and flavor.
  3. If it comes with a grinder and everything is fully automated then there might be some days you just have to bear with what you got out of the machine.

Automatic Espresso Machine.

The automatic espresso machine, gives some power to the you making it a fair bit easier for you to monitor you coffee brew a whole lot better than that of the super automatic type where you have no control over quality.

For automatic type you measure your coffee grounds to the quantity your want into the portafilter, tamp your coffee grounds in your portafilter, taking out all air and making the coffee form a dense mass. After that you fix the portafilter back into the group head and begin the brewing. 

Espresso machine in the cafe How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

You monitor the Brew time by preseting the quantity of water that flows from the water compartment into the group head and through the portafilter into your cup. After that amount flows through, the pump stops.


  1. You can actively control quality of your espresso coffee.
  2. After mastering your espresso making, it's one extra skill that you can put to good use and might take you places.


  1. The basics might not be easy to grab for most people and it might take real practice.
  2. You cannot afford to be slack if you don't want your coffee to taste bad. It needs focus.

Semi-automatic Espresso Machine.

Semi-automatics requires your input and focus and.. a bit of force. Everything is under your control from preparing the coffee to brew time and quantity. Here there are no pumps, sensors, valves and grinders that will make your work easy. Almost everything is done by hand.

For semi-automatics you should use a pump to deliver water for the brewing instead of using manual force. However if you think that you want to do it manually, please by all means do it. It will make a good early morning arm exercise.

You load up the portafilter with coffee grounds, and then you tamp it to get an even density and remove any air pockets. Next you fix it in the group head and start to brew. 

Parts of the espresso machine labeled How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

You want to watch out for the color during the brewing process as the light brown must be consistent. The duration of 15-25 seconds is the range you should work towards as you pass the water through the coffee for your quality espresso.

After brewing, you release the built up pressure in the basket by a three-way valve. The ability to control the quality between shots in the real benefit of semi-automatic espresso machines.

When it comes to shot quality semi-automatics are usually preferred and together with automatics they make up a good number of espresso machines used by commercial coffee shops.

Fun fact: Most coffee shops in Europe still make use of semi-automatic espresso machines so they can better serve their customers.


  1. Good high quality coffee is the result if your have mastered the art of coffee making.
  2. Everything is under your control.
  3. Less expensive than other types.


  1. You will need to learn how to operate it before you can make headways.


This section contains some espresso machines and a few equipment you can buy and use for your personal cafe so you can make quality espresso in the comfort of your home.

If you have one espresso machine before, no prob, but if you don't, then be sure to check out the list and make your choice.

1. HiBrew HBA 3in1 Espresso Machine.

HiBrew HBA How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

Very brilliant design and idea. This product basically took away the need for a separate frothing cup and made everything easier for you quick homemade latte.

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Why you should consider getting it.

  • First thing first is the obvious addition of a separate milk tank. So you can froth your milk without stress and you don't need an extra container.
  • It works on a one click function. Fully automatic.
  • It has precise temperature control and pressure which makes for a perfect cup of coffee.
  • It easily detachable for cleaning.
  • You can brew one or two cups simultaneously making it easier to brew coffee for visitors.
  • Lastly, there is a drawer cup holder that help to set the cup for receiving the coffee.

2. HiBrew CM5020 Espresso Machine.

HiBrew CM5020 How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

As the largest on the list the 5020 packs quite a lot into its large frame. A few of these functions and perks are listed below.

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Why you should consider getting it.

  • This one comes with a grinder. You don't need to buy a grinder anymore. And to make it better it use a conical burr grinder where you can set the size of the coffee grounds to your taste.
  • It is not a super automatic machine so you get to switch the mode from automatic to manual when you want.
  • It has a cup warmer.
  • There is a bean Hopper at the top for your beans.
  • It can brew coffee for two cups at the same time and has a steam wand for steaming milk.
  • The design of this machine make it capable of serving at home, in the office, at a party or in the cafe.

3. Blitzhome CM1503 - 15bar.

Blitzhome cm1503 How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

The blitzhome rank pretty high on the list so I decided to put it on. You can go through the important points I noted down and see if it's the right one for you.

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Why you should consider getting it.

  • Designed in full metal with a beautiful look and figure.
  • It is very portable for home use. It can brew coffee and also steam milk.
  • It has a cup warmer at the top.
  • You can easily detach the water tank and tray for washing and cleaning.
  • You can use for brewing a variety of espresso based brews.
  • The volume of the coffee is adjustable to your preference.
  • A lot of safety majors are built into it. Like an alarm and the automatic power off function.

4. HiBrew H10 Coffee Espresso Machine - 20bar.

HiBrew H10 How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

The HiBrew H10 is a worthy consideration if you are looking to purchase a new espresso maker. 

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Why you should consider getting it.

  • The h10 is packed with functionality. There is a two spout from the portafilter, so you can brew two cups at the same time.
  • Cappuccino, mocha, latte, macchiato just name it. You can brew them on this coffee machine.
  • You can brew coffee and steam milk with the heated water.
  • It is easy to clean thanks to the detachable base.
  • Improved steam dryness for proper frothing of milk.
  • It can be manually controlled in all stages and thanks to that you can brew good coffee that matches your taste.

5. HiBrew Tamper and Bottomless Portafilter.

HiBrew Tamper and portafilter How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

For those who prefer the bottomless type of portafilter this is for you. Here, you get a two in one deal, you need a Tamper or a portafilter you can get this.

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Why you should consider getting it.

  • You get two items for a fairly good price.
  • They are made of solid metal and wooden body and it is detachable. So it can be stored differently.
  • The bottomless portafilter comes with good filter setup so you can extract the best from your coffee.

6. Milk Frothing Pitcher - Cesdeals.

Cesdeals milk jug How to use an espresso machine UniqueMag

You use this pitcher for frothing your milk on the espresso machine. Aside from that it can serve other purposes.

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Why you should consider getting it.

  • Excellent for frothing your milk whenever you plan on adding milk to your coffee.
  • Easy for pouring out your contents.
  • Handle properly made so no heat is transferred.
  • This jug can serve a variety of purpose. It can be used for making coffee by the Turkish technique.
  • You can also place on direct fire, electrical and gas, and use it for boiling water or heating up any liquid.

FAQ'S and Notes on Espresso Machines

Can Espresso Machine make other types of coffee.

Most espresso machine won't make both regular coffee and espresso as they employ different processes. But who knows the science of espresso is still developing so you might want to search and see if you can find multipurpose espresso machine as they might brew both espresso and regular coffee.

Do Espresso Machine have Internal Grinder.

Some of them of the super automatic type do have internal grinders to make the work fully automatic and stress-free. Other types may have it included in the build but it is under you watch.

What is a steam wand and is it necessary.

A steam wand is an added piece of equipment that can really make an espresso machine a worthy buy. With a steam wand you can steam and froth milk. As an espresso is very versatile and is a base for other types of coffee, it becomes easy to switch up your espresso recipe anytime you want.

What is Single Boiler, Heat Exchanger and Double Boiler.

  1. Single boiler machines are of two types a) the type that heat up the water for brewing only b) the type that steams water for both brewing coffee and frothing milk. 
  2. Heat exchanger are for absorbing some of the heat of steamed water reducing the temperature to a level fit for brewing coffee.
  3. Double boiler espresso machines can both steam and heat water in different chambers one for coffee and the other for milk.

I hope you've learnt a little from this post on how to use an espresso machine at home. I will try to include a video so you can check it out and quicken the learning process. In the main time you can search on YouTube if you really need to see a video.

Thanks for reading.


  1. Wikipedia - Espresso Machines:
  2. Home grounds - Tamping guide:

Victor Love

Hi, I am Victor Love. I am a Blogger, Student and a ready to learn Entrepreneur with an abundance of Ideas. As a lover of the good things of life, I only have a single goal here, and that is making sure you are inspired to lead a UNIQUE and WONDERFUL life. Thanks for visiting my site and HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY. instagram whatsapp

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