Aeropress vs espresso machine: what’s the difference?

aeropress vs espresso

Aeropress vs espresso, two machines have different brewing methods. Also, both extract noticeably different tastes and textures. One is traditional black coffee without adding anything; the other extracts concentrated coffee, which can add flavors. Both methods have advantages: Aeropress brews milder coffee without adding flavors, and espresso is a more concentrated drink with added flavors.

Let’s check all the differences between the two and determine which brewing method will suit you.

What is Aeropress?


Aeropress is a relatively new coffee-making machine, gaining popularity due to its unique but simple brewing method. It was invented in 2005. If you consider yourself a coffee enthusiast, you should try brewing in Aeropress, and you will have a different taste and experience from traditional brewing machines.

I like Aeropress due to its simple coffee-making process; it is also an easy device to clean after every brewing. But the thing I love most about Aeropress is that I can carry it while traveling and brew coffee wherever and whenever I want.

Similarly, you can be creative and brew a customized drink. It doesn’t need to follow a specific formula for making coffee. I use more ground coffee and a small volume of water to get more concentrated bitter coffee. Now, let’s check precisely what method to brew in Aeropress.

Aeropress brewing method

When we compare it to an espresso machine, The Aeropress has a simple manual brewing process. It uses air pressure to extract the coffee flavors since it consists of two cylinders, a larger one and a smaller one.

  • Place a paper filter at the bottom of the larger cylinder in the first step and add coffee grounds.
  • Then, you pour hot water over the grounds and stir.
  • After a short brewing time, you press the smaller cylinder down, using air pressure to push the coffee through the filter and into your cup.
Aeropress brewing method

It delivers fine-quality coffee and usually doesn’t add any flavors. And In my personal experience, it produces better quality than many other coffee brewing methods. But make sure to use the right amount of water and ground coffee.

What is an Espresso machine?

An espresso machine

In contrast to the Aeropress, the espresso machine has a more sophisticated device with more features. The espresso brewing method is an old traditional method people have been using this method over a century now.

However, espresso produces more concentrated coffee, using pressurized hot water that passes through ground coffee. The espresso machine makes coffee using various methods and adds a wide variety of flavors.

Espresso machines are widely used in coffee shops. It comes in semi to fully automated machines. Also, the espresso machine customizes drinks to get your favorite flavor. Another good feature is that espresso machines are programmable to get a consistent brewing experience and taste.

What is the difference between Aeropress and an espresso machine?

Both machines are pretty dissimilar and use different brewing methods. Aeropress is a manual coffee machine, while espresso is an automatic machine that makes coffee with the push of a button.

What kind of coffee beans to use?

Aeropress uses an immersion process, requiring medium to fine-grind to get the best extraction. If someone uses coarse grind, the coffee may become unusually bitter and unpleasant. However, I suggest using lightly roasted coffee beans for Aeropress; it will give a bitter and slightly acidic flavor.

On the other hand, the espresso machine always uses fine ground coffee. Also, darkly roasted coffee beans are preferable for a robust concentrated espresso drink.

Aeropress vs espresso: Which machine makes coffee with better taste and texture?

Since both machines have dissimilar brewing methods, the taste of the two is also quite different. Aeropress makes coffee somewhat similar to drip coffee; it has a milder and less bitter taste. Also, it brews coffee with a black texture.

Espresso machines have a metal basket to get more oils in espresso. So, the espresso machine brews highly concentrated, strong coffee with a bitter taste. It has a slightly different color, creating crema at the top.

Aeropress coffee

If you don’t have experience with coffee before, you might find it extremely bitter and unpleasant, but you will start loving the authentic taste of espresso after some time.

Espresso vs Aeropress: The difference in bar pressure makes all the difference!

Bar pressure in a coffee maker determines the strength and taste of a coffee. The bar pressure in coffee-making devices like Aeropress and Moka pots is significantly lower than in espresso machines. Espresso machines are designed to give you intense coffee flavors. No other machine can compete within this regard.

Aeropress works around .50 to .75 of bar pressure. Which only gives a milder and less concentrated coffee. Espresso works with much higher brewing pressure, at least 9 bars. Even professional espresso machines have higher bar pressure for highly concentrated coffee.

Aeropress vs espresso: Temperature

Heating the water at the right temperature is essential for the best extraction. The ideal temperature for an Aeropress should be around 175f to 185f.

Espresso machines automatically heat the water at the correct temperature. For the espresso machines to get perfect extraction, the water boils around 195f to 205f.

Which machine is easy to clean and maintain?

When we look to buy any coffee maker, we consider the machine should be easy to clean and maintain. Aeropress is a simple device that is easy to clean after every extraction.

An Aeropress consists of four main parts: the chamber, the plunger, the filter cap, and the seal. So, it is important to clean each part separately to get an ideal clean. After every use, rinse the Aeropress to get the ideal brew. You can use any simple detergent to clean Aeropress.

To get an ideal clean, I usually soak every part of the Aeropress in vinegar for a few hours and then rinse every part. On the other hand, an automatic espresso machine cleans everything automatically. However, if you don’t have an automatic espresso machine, you must manually clean it.

Like the steam wand’s portafilter, every part needs to be cleaned thoroughly. Unlike Aeropress, which requires cleaning after every use, an espresso machine must be cleaned properly after a few days. Also, a descaling solution is available to remove deposits of espresso machine parts.

Aeropress vs espresso: Which machine is more affordable?

When comparing prices, the Aeropress certainly has a more affordable price range than espresso. However, when we compare the performance and features, the espresso machine consistently delivers the same strong taste and aroma.

Also, Aeropress is not designed to make espresso, it only brews black coffee. If you want a robust espresso taste, never buy Aeropress. An espresso machine with manual funtions can be available at a reasonable price.

The espresso machine has so many features that we may not get in Aeropress. The espresso machine has a built-in grinder and steam wand, making brewing much easier and time-saving.

The espresso machine is a deservingly expensive product. Also, the espresso machine makes many known flavors of coffee like latte, cappuccino and Americano.

However, Aeropress makes less strong coffee and requires every step manually. Aero press can be purchased for around $30 to $50. An espresso machine is comparatively more expensive, from $100 to $2000.

Final thoughts: Aeropress vs espresso: Which machine is the winner?

If you want a strong espresso drink and other flavors like Americano, latte, cappuccino, and many other milky drinks. An espresso machine should be your choice. However, if you look to brew a milder coffee with less intense flavor, the Aeropress should be the option.

Also, I think if you are new to coffee, making the Aeropress is a much simpler and easier device to make coffee. Similarly, the espresso taste may be too strong, so Aeropress is a better choice. Aeropress is also preferable for those who don’t want to spend too much on coffee machines. Espresso is expensive and requires time and money to maintain.

If you ask me, I prefer Aeropress for a quick cup of milder coffee with less caffeine and sugar. Aeropress makes healthier coffee than espresso.

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