In this roundup of the best Ninja Coffee Makers, we’ll go over the types of coffee makers the company produces, the best in each category, and everything you need to know before buying one.
In general, these coffee makers are serious machines that bring a cafe atmosphere to your kitchen, combining ease of use with delicious results.
Ninja produces three leading coffee makers: the Ninja Coffee Brewer, the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker, and the Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System.
Within all these choices, there’s sure to be a coffee machine that’s ideal for you. We’ll help you figure out which one.
What Is the Ninja Coffee Maker Brand?
In the world of coffee makers, Ninja is an upstart brand that’s been making waves since they put out their first product.
Part of a larger company that’s rather intriguingly called SharkNinja, Ninja produces a range of kitchen appliances from their headquarters in Needham, Massachusetts. Shark, the sister company, focuses on manufacturing vacuum cleaners.
Founded in 1993 under a different, much less cool, name, Euro Pro Operating LLC, the company has seen rapid growth and competes with established names like General Electric, Hoover, and Dyson.
Today, they have over 2000 employees, sell their products in eight countries, and hold over 2000 patents.
The Ninja brand originally became famous for its blenders, which are very popular due to their quality and durability. When it comes to coffee makers, they began producing a line of products called the Ninja Coffee Bar System.
After a few years of success, they retired that product line and introduced new categories, which we’ll review in the next section.
Ninja Coffee Bar Models Comparison
The three different product lines of Ninja coffee makers each have their pluses and minuses. Some people will be more drawn to one or the other based on the types of coffee they like to drink.
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Ninja Coffee Brewer
The Ninja Coffee Brewer is the most simple and basic of the Ninja Coffee Bar Models, which is a really good thing for those who just want a simple and basic cup of joe in the morning. The Ninja Coffee Brewer can make two different types of coffee: Classic and Rich.
The Classic Brew is mellow but still full of flavor, while the Rich Brew option will have your eyes wide open as soon as the coffee reaches your lips.
What’s great about the Ninja Coffee Brewer is the small-batch setting, which saves you from having to make too much coffee. You can brew one to four cups in this brew mode without the overconcentrated taste that conventional coffee makers give to small batches.
The model number of the Ninja Coffee Brewer products starts with CE.
Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker
The difference between this model and the simpler Coffee Brewer we just went over is two more additional drinks that you can make. The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker line of products can brew the Classic and Rich Variety and the Over Ice and Specialty varieties.
The ability to make iced coffee is excellent in the summer. The system cools down the coffee while still in the machine so that it’s not too hot when it hits the ice cubes in your glass. That feature saves you from drinking iced “coffee,” which is only half coffee and half-melted ice.
The specialty option gives you the ability to make drinks like macchiatos, cappuccinos, and lattes at home. The milk frother works well on both cold and warm milk, and it conveniently folds into the machine when not in use.
The model number of the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker products starts with CM.
Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System
The Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System is the most expensive model of all Ninja’s coffee makers but has enough unique features to justify the increased price tag.
This machine has no less than six brew modes that give you access to any number of caffeinated beverages: Classic, Rich, Over Ice, Specialty, Cold Brew, and Tea Brewing.
The headline addition to the lineup is undoubtedly the cold brew feature. While you can make cool coffee that goes over ice with the Specialty model, cold brew is an entirely different animal that uses cold water to extract flavor and caffeine from your coffee grounds.
It’s got a different texture and is just about the most refreshing coffee drink out there. It also packs a serious dose of caffeine.
If you’ve got a tea drinker in the house, the Tea Brewing option will come in handy as well.
The model number of the Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System products starts with CP.
Ninja Coffee Bar – Older Generation
The three new versions of the Ninja Coffee Bar are all great machines, but that doesn’t mean the older generations are too far behind.
If you can get your hands on the Ninja Coffee Bar (the original Coffee Brewer) or the Ninja Coffee Bar System (the original Specialty Coffee Maker), you’ll still be able to make a great cup of coffee.
The model number of the previous Ninja Coffee Bar products starts with CF.
Common Features on All Models
All three types of Ninja Coffee Maker share several features. Here’s what you can expect no matter which one you choose.
Removable Water Reservoir
For easy refilling, maintenance, and cleaning, all Ninja Coffee Makers have removable water reservoirs.
Trust me; it’s much easier to remove a water tank and fill it up at the sink than it is to awkwardly pour water from another vessel into the top of a coffee machine. Whenever I try to do the latter, water ends up all over the place!
Most Ninja Coffee Maker reservoirs hold 50 ounces of water, which is enough to make 10 cups of coffee between refills. The Coffee Brewer has a slightly larger capacity of 60 ounces.
Permanent Coffee Filter And Basket Basket
The permanent brew basket ensures a smooth and grind-free cup of coffee without the need for paper filters. You just put the coffee grounds directly into the metal basket!
Not only will you have less waste, but you’ll also never face the annoying situation of having coffee in the house but no filters.
Six Brew Sizes
All Ninja Coffee Makers have different modes for making different-sized batches of coffee. The Ninja Coffee Brewer lets you choose between a 12-cup batch and a small batch setting for one to four cups.
The Specialty and Hot and Cold Brewed models have separate settings for six different brew sizes: single cup, XL cup, travel mug, XL multi-serve, half carafe, and full carafe.
All these options mean that you can brew the perfect amount of coffee without having any wasted leftovers.
Programmable Delay Brew
Mornings are tough for everyone, but for me, the most challenging part is getting up to make my first cup of coffee.
The Programmable Delay Brew feature that all Ninja Coffee Makers come with takes care of this task for me. All you have to do is load the coffee and water the night before, then set the time you want the coffee machine to start working.
Thermal Flavor Extraction
Although it’s a little difficult to understand what Thermal Flavor Extraction is, this feature holds the key to what makes Ninja Coffee Makers able to produce such consistently great coffee.
The Auto-iQ™ One-Touch Intelligence feature takes all the preferences you’ve set (type of drink, size of coffee, etc.) and figures out the ideal brew temperature, bloom time, and proper level of saturation. It’s why a Ninja Coffee Maker won’t ever make a bitter cup of coffee.
The brew times on Ninja Coffee Makers vary between 10 and 15 minutes, depending on the type and size of drink you’re making.
Whatever the case, all you need to do is push a button, and then the Auto-iQ™ One-Touch Intelligence system takes over.
SCA Certified Coffee Maker
Except for the basic Ninja Coffee Brewer, all other Ninja Coffee Makers meet the rigorous standards of the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA). The SCA certifies machines that brew their coffee within the proper window of water temperature and brewing time.
The Best Ninja Coffee Makers Reviews
In these detailed product reviews, we’ll take you through all the most important features of each.
Ninja Coffee Brewer – CE251
The Ninja Coffee Brewer CE251 is a solid and dependable coffee maker that will get the job done morning after morning (or night after night).
Furthermore, it will perform just as well in a household as it will in a small office, with its 60-ounce capacity to furnish many people with their caffeine fixes.
The process of brewing is straightforward. The first step is to ensure you have enough water to brew the amount of coffee you want.
You can either fill it with exactly the amount you need or fill up the tank—I like to do the latter, but some people want their coffee ASAP and only use as much water as they need.
After that, you need to load the coffee into the permanent filter, using one spoon of ground coffee per cup (regardless of whether you select Rich or Classic).
Once you program the machine with the number of cups you want to be brewed and whether you’d like a Classic or Rich brew, all you do is punch the button and you’ll have coffee in ten or fifteen minutes.
If you don’t want to wait that long for your cup of coffee, there’s a pause feature that will stop the brewing for a moment while you pour yourself a cup from the half-full carafe. You can then resume brewing when you replace the glass carafe so that there’s enough coffee for everyone.
The consistent brew temperature of the Ninja Coffee Brewer and the resulting even saturation means that there won’t be much of a difference between a cup that’s poured halfway through the brewing process and one poured at the end.
For coffee drinkers whose favorite cup doesn’t have many frills, this is a great machine.
Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker – CM401/CM407
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker elevates your coffee game to a level that will impress even those who will only go to Starbucks when picking up a coffee on the go.
The frother produces high-quality foam very quickly, making it easy to froth your milk just as your coffee is finishing brewing. Fresh coffee and freshly frothed milk is a match made in heaven.
To use the frother, you have to push a button that tells the machine to start heating water and producing steam. Once it’s ready to go, you’ll only need seconds for your milk to be frothed.
The coffee concentrate brew option means that your milk will go over the top of a high-quality espresso. Even though the concentrated coffee is not the authentic espresso, the specialty drinks will be as tasty as the one you got from the coffee shop.
The only difference between the CM401 and CM407 is the material the carafe is made of. The 401 has a glass carafe and warming plate while the 407 has a thermal material that will preserve the heat of your hot coffee for a very long time.
If you like to make one batch of coffee and drink multiple cups from it, the thermal carafe will make it seem like the pot of coffee is constantly fresh.
Both the CM401 and CM407 have the same amount of brew options: Rich and Classic, just like the Coffee Brewer, as well as specialty options and the over ice recipe that delivers cool coffee.
One final note is that the thermal carafe will also help keep your coffee cool on a hot day!
Ninja Hot And Cold Brewed System – CP301/CP307
Finally, we get to the Rolls-Royce of Ninja Coffee Makers: the Ninja Hot And Cold Brewed System. With this machine, you can do everything that you could with the other machines, plus more.
You can do so much with it that the control panel resembles something you’d find in a spaceship. You can choose to brew tea and tell the system what kind of tea it is and watch the machine adjust the water temperature and brew time.
The most significant advantage that the Hot and Cold Brew System possesses over the other Ninja Coffee Makers is its ability to make cold brew coffee significantly different from the Over Ice option that the specialty machine has.
Cold brew coffee is brewed with very cold water that spends a lot of time running through the ground coffee. This results in coffee with both strong flavor and high caffeine content, without unpleasant acidity and bitterness.
Once again, Ninja sells the Hot and Cold Brew System with both glass and thermal carafes. In this context, the same differences exist here between the glass and thermal as with the Specialty Coffee Maker.
However, given you can also make cold-brew with this machine, you might want to keep it cold with the thermal carafe.
The Hot and Cold Brew System has the same fold-away milk frother as the Specialty Coffee Maker, so you won’t be left missing cafe-style drinks like lattes and cappuccinos.
Finally, if you are also a tea drinker, this machine is specially designed for you. It comes with a filter basket for brewing tea, which can be recognized automatically by the coffee machine. With a touch of the button, you can choose your favorite tea brewing options.
Other Things to Consider Before Buying a Ninja Coffee Maker
All of this information about brew modes and frothers can be overwhelming. So, this section will break down the primary considerations involved in your decision between the three models of Ninja Coffee Maker.
Your Drink Preferences
This is perhaps the most critical consideration, as you want to get a machine that can make the coffee you like to drink. For someone who just likes black coffee and only brews coffee hot, the simple Ninja Coffee Brewer is the best choice.
However, if your tastes run more European and you like your lattes or ice brew, it’s probably better to go with one of the other models. Finally, those who want a cold brew on hot summer days have only one option.
Another important consideration is the number of different people that will be using the coffee machine. Everyone has their taste, so if you entertain frequently or are buying the machine for an office, it’s best to go with a model that offers many options.
If you’re interested in the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker or the Ninja Hot And Cold Brewer, you have one further choice to make: What kind of carafe do you want?
The CM401 and CP301 both come with glass carafes that are warmed by a hot plate, while the CM407 and CP307 have a thermal carafe. The thermal carafe is basically like a large, insulated travel mug that can preserve the temperature of your coffee for a long time.
The main issue with the glass and warmer system is that coffee left on a hot plate for too long tends to lose its taste. On the other hand, the carafe doesn’t use any active heat so your coffee keeps its flavor longer.
However, if you don’t tend to leave extra coffee in the carafe you intend to drink later, you don’t need to spend extra money on the thermal carafe.
You’ll Need a Grinder
The one thing that isn’t included in any of the Coffee Ninja System is a grinder—an essential investment for someone who loves coffee. Freshly ground beans are simply far superior to pre-ground, which will go stale very quickly.
I’m someone that values diversity in my coffee drinking experience, so my favorite machine is the Ninja Hot And Cold Brewed System.
However, each of the Ninja Coffee Machine models we’ve discussed is capable of delivering a consistently great cup of coffee. It all comes down to how you like to start your mornings.