Espresso made with freshly ground beans the only way you’re willing to go? Then the bean-to-cup Beko CEG5301 coffee machine is definitely worth your consideration as a one-stop espresso maker, and we’ve got the full rundown right here.
I tested a wide selection of coffee machines to see how much of your worktop they’ll take up, how easy they are to use, how quickly they’ll deliver your drink, which coffees they’ll make, and – crucially – what the brews taste like.
Want to compare the Beko coffee machine to other machines available on the market? Browse our guide to the best coffee machines.
Beko CEG5301 coffee machine specifications
- Type: Bean to cup
- Pressure: 19 bar
- Capacity: 1.5 ltr water tank
- Dimensions: H38 x W23.6 x D43.6cm
Who will the Beko CEG5301 suit?
Espresso-loving households after barista-quality drinks without having to leave the house.
What is the Beko CEG5301 like to use?
The touch controls are intuitive and ensure the finish is sleek, while the machine’s automated cleaning programmes make life easy.
The Beko CEG5301 is a great value machine – and it’s stylish, too. What’s more, even though it’s a bean-to-cup machine, it doesn’t demand too much space, nor make much noise.
Coffee options and taste
A machine for espresso fans, the Beko CEG5301 will transform coffee beans into a drink that’s full of flavour. There’s a choice of strong or mild espresso at the push of a button, and there’s also the option to keep the button held down whichever you’re making to create the volume of coffee you prefer.
I found the espressos from this machine to have first-class taste. They were rich and complex, but without any bitterness. The crema (foam on the top) had barista-produced proportions, and the aroma was enticing, too.
The set up of this machine gets full marks from me, as it was not at all puzzling and took little time.
Putting the beans into the container was simple as it’s easily accessible at the top of the machine, and the water tank lifted easily from the back of the machine for filling under the tap, slotting back into place with no difficulty. I also appreciated the ease with which the coffee spout could be adjusted to suit the size of cup I was using: it moved easily up and down as required.
The LCD touch controls made things beautifully simple and obvious with a button for strong espresso and one for mild. Mild espresso was more to my taste but it didn’t lack flavour because of it, while strong suited my coffee-tasting companion better. I wasn’t left drumming my fingers waiting: the machine moved through the grinding, heat up and brewing process rapidly.
It was easy to customise drinks with this machine by keeping the button pressed down for a longer drink. It memorises this setting (but you can restore the default setting if/when desired). This memory function obviously wouldn’t cater for a big household of coffee drinkers with coffee requirements each person wanted to save, but I found it a useful added feature that meant I could leave the machine to get on with the coffee I’d perfected.
Cleaning and maintenance
Caring for the espresso maker isn’t unduly taxing. You can clean the coffee nozzle after use with a rinsing cycle that sends hot water through it – which should help keep the quality of your drinks consistent.
The machine has prompts to avoid your forgetting your duties: there’s a warning for a full coffee grounds container, and another when it needs descaling with an agent. (Using vinegar is a no-no, by the way.)
Day to day, the drip tray and coffee grounds container were easy to remove for cleaning, which needed to be done by hand – they don’t go in the dishwasher. Getting the brewer out for washing under the tap needed a littl
What to watch out for
Bean-to-cup coffee machines can be an investment buy, so the relatively modest price of this model makes it stand out from the crowd. But while you’ll be spending less, you won’t be compromising on taste. Like the option to make espresso-based drinks with frothed milk? It could still fit the bill teamed with a separate milk frother, or you could opt for the Beko CEG5311 which brings a steam wand to the proceedings, and still comes with an appealing price tag.
The dimensions of this machine also add to its appeal. It measures H38 x W23.6 x D43.6cm, making it a manageable addition to the worktop. It looks sleek and contemporary as well.
How does it rate online?
The machine hasn’t garnered many reviews on Amazon as yet, but 4.6 out of five make them contented customers. Its coffees were rated as superb, and the value for money noted. The negatives? Buyers would have liked a larger water tank, and a more thorough instruction manual.
For purchasers at ao.com the overall score was 4.7 out of five. Reviewers liked its small footprint and found it easy to use, and to clean, as well as thinking its coffees were as good as those on the high street.
About our review – and our reviewer
Sarah Warwick has specialised in homes and interiors for over 20 years. She was Executive Editor of Ideal Home magazine, and has written for nationals, magazines and websites including Real Homes, Homebuilding & Renovating, Grand Designs, Homes & Gardens, Houzz, The Guardian, House Beautiful and Country Homes & Interiors. She put the coffee machines to the test on a variety of drinks, as well as checking out how easy they were to set up, and to clean.