Best Thermal Carafe Coffee Maker For 2020

Getting a thermal carafe for your coffee machine is usually a slightly more expensive option than using a glass carafe and hot plate. However, thermal carafes are often a favored pick. They’re often insulated and keep the coffee hot for hours. They’re generally more portable and convenient as compared to glass carafes. 

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Also, thermal carafes usually have a better construction and quality. We take a look at the best thermal carafe coffee maker on the market. It’s quite an interesting set and can sometimes overlap with glass carafe models as well. 

Many coffee makers are available in variant models that cater to the thermal carafe or classic glass carafe and hot plate.

Top Coffee Makers With Thermal Carafe

Best 12 Cup Coffee Maker With Thermal Carafe: Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker

Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker 12 Cup Carafe

This 12-cup coffee maker from Cuisinart offers great value and is very useful in a home as well as office setting. Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker, 12 Cup Carafe comes with several useful features and is easy to operate. Plus, its thermal carafe is dependable and useful and adds to the quality of this coffee maker.

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Reviews: Best Thermal Carafe Coffee Makers On The Market

1. BUNN BT Velocity Brew 10-Cup Thermal Carafe Home Coffee Brewer

BUNN BT Velocity Brew 10-Cup Thermal Carafe Home Coffee Brewer

The biggest draw for BUNN BT Velocity coffee maker is its speed. You can have the full 10-cup carafe filled up in about three minutes. That’s probably amongst the fastest (if not the fastest) a full carafe can be brewed. BUNN BT Velocity comes with a thermal carafe that will keep your coffee hot for around 2 hours after it is brewed.

It’s simple and straightforward. BUNN also has the advantage of relying more on steel than plastic in the construction of its coffee makers. While this particular model isn’t exactly a plastic-free coffee maker, it does use a stainless steel hot water tank. 

As the machine is switched on, it heats the water inside the tank and keeps it hot, maintaining a temperature near 200°F. This makes it easy to brew a full carafe quickly, as hot water is readily available. BUNN BT Velocity Brew also includes a special thermostat that adjusts the water temperature for use in places that are above 5000 feet in elevation.

Pros

  • Fast brewing time
  • Stainless steel hot water tank
  • Thermostat adjusts for high-elevation locations
  • Good quality construction
  • Dependable double-walled and vacuum-insulated thermal carafe

Cons

  • Though rare, some machines give off a strong odor for a few days
  • Since the machine keeps water always hot, there are concerns for power consumption

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2. Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker, 12 Cup Carafe

Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker

Our editor’s choice for this category is the Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker, 12 Cup Carafe. This machine is a well-known workhorse that’s extremely popular for being easy to use and offering good value for money.

It comes with a range of useful features, including 24-hour programmability, 1-4 cup setting, auto-off, ready alert tone, auto-clean, and brew strength control. Two options are available when using brew strength control setting: regular and bold.

Overall, Cuisinart’s 12-cup coffee maker is easy to use and has a straightforward interface. The thermal carafe is sturdy and insulated. It will keep your coffee hot for a couple of hours.

Pros

  • Easy to use machine with convenient controls
  • Programmable machine
  • Can brew full 12 cup carafe or 1-4 cups
  • Excellent value for money
  • Reliable thermal carafe

Cons

  • Questionable longevity
  • The coffee maker construction feels flimsy at some points

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3. Zojirushi EC-YSC100 Fresh Brew Plus Thermal Carafe Coffee Maker, 10 Cup

Zojirushi Coffee Maker 10 Cup

Zojirushi EC-YSC100 Fresh Brew is an easy to use machine that brews great coffee. The coffee maker works quietly to heat water up to 200°F for better coffee extraction. It’s worth noting that the SCA-recommended brewing temperature for coffee is in the range of 195-205°F. 

Not only does this Zojirushi machine reach the required temperature, but it also holds it well throughout the brewing process. This ensures better coffee quality and a consistent brew.

The control panel on the Zojirushi EC-YSC100 Fresh Brew looks like it could use a facelift to turn modern. Thankfully, its features and operation match most modern requirements. Features available on this 10-cup coffee maker include fast brew, 24-hour programmable brewing, auto-clean, and a removable water reservoir. 

Pros

  • Convenient and easy to use machine
  • Programmable coffee maker
  • Pre-infusion cycle for better flavor extraction
  • Thermal carafe is of good quality and keeps coffee hot for hours

Cons

  • No brew size or brew-strength selection
  • Coffee made with quick brew sometimes feels weak and cold

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4. Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System, Auto-iQ Tea and Coffee Maker

Ninja Hot And Cold Brewed System

Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System, Auto-iQ Tea and Coffee Maker is currently the top-of-the-line model from the famous company. This is an excellent and dependable coffee maker that has several features that can make the user’s coffee experience better.

The coffee machine features a removable water reservoir, six brew size options, five brew type options, 24-hour programmable brewing, auto-clean, and an option to brew tea or coffee. 

To make things easier, Ninja has included two brew baskets with this machine, one for coffee, the other for tea. Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System automatically recognizes the basket used and brews coffee or tea to your preference. The company’s Auto-iQ system helps keep the water at the right temperature and plays a part in ensuring brew size is fit to user requirements.

Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System comes with an insulated carafe. The thermal carafe can hold 10 cups of coffee and keep them hot for a couple of hours.

Pros

  • Easy to use and feature-rich machine
  • Programmable coffee maker
  • Six brew size and five brew style options
  • Separate brew baskets for coffee and tea
  • 10 cup thermal carafe

Cons

  • Auto-clean function can get overly repetitive
  • The brew temperature can sometimes go below recommended levels

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5. Bonavita 5-Cup One-Touch Coffee Maker BV1500TS

Bonavita 5-Cup One-Touch Coffee Maker Featuring Thermal Carafe BV1500TS

Bonavita 5-Cup One-Touch Coffee Maker is an easy to use machine, thanks to its reliance on a single button for operation. Quite like its sibling, the Bonavita BV1900TS 8-Cup coffee maker, this one too is an automatic pour over coffee maker with metal carafe.

The thermal carafe is sturdy, well-engineered, and good enough to keep the coffee hot for a couple of hours. As for the coffee maker, it hums into action at the flick of a button. 

Bonavita 5-Cup One-Touch Coffee Maker BV1500TS can prepare its full carafe in about 6 minutes. That’s a fairly good speed that ensures you don’t have to wait too long for your coffee. Other notable features of the coffee maker include BPA-free construction, optional pre-infusion, and 2-year warranty.

Pros

  • Easy to use due to single-button operation
  • Makes great coffee in just six minutes
  • Optional pre-infusion mode lets coffee bloom before it is brewed

Cons

  • Some issues with machine durability

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6. Cuisinart CPO-850 Coffee Brewer, 8 Cup

Cuisinart CPO 850 Coffee Brewer

With impressive value and great coffee, this SCAA-certified coffee maker is easily a top pick. This remarkable drip coffee maker ensures that the water temperature, coffee extraction, and contact time stay true to the golden cup recommendations by the SCA.

Cuisinart CPO-850 Coffee Brewer has a metallic look, which matches pretty well with its thermal carafe. The carafe can hold 8 cups of coffee and keep it hot for about 2 hours, without needing a hot plate. Insulated and well-constructed, the carafe has a total capacity of 64 oz. 

An easy to use control panel makes it convenient to brew the coffee of your choice. Well, we don’t necessarily have to brew the golden cup every time and can customize the brew to our preference. Cuisinart CPO-850 offers flavor strength control at mild, medium, bold, while the temperature control is available at hot and extra hot.

Pros

  • Good value for money
  • Programmable machine has auto-on and auto-off 
  • Brew-pause function allows pouring a quick cup without spilling coffee

Cons

  • Build quality needs improvement
  • The design looks somewhat outdated

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7. Hamilton Beach 46896A 10 Cup Coffee Maker

Hamilton Beach 46896A 10 Cup Coffee Maker with Vacuum Stainless Thermal Carafe

Hamilton Beach 46896A is an excellent 10 cup coffee maker that offers great value for money. This coffee maker has a price point that’s rarely available for thermal carafe coffee makers. In addition to the carafe, the coffee maker also includes several other features and functions.

This coffee maker has a programmable timer so you can brew coffee at a preset time of your choosing. The auto-pause and serve function makes it possible to grab a quick cup of coffee rather than wait for the carafe to fill up.

Pros

  • Excellent value for money
  • Programmable machine with auto-on and auto-off
  • Auto-pause and serve for pouring coffee while the pot is brewing

Cons

  • Questionable longevity

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8. Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Thermal Coffee Maker, Single Serve & Full Pot

The Hamilton Beach FlexBrew series is one of the coolest options available. The feature-rich machine can brew the conventional coffee pot carafe route and also has a single-serve side. Hamilton Beach FlexBrew 49966 is a dual coffee maker

Separate water reservoirs service each side of the coffee maker. The carafe side can brew enough to fill the 10-cup thermal carafe. On the other side, you have a single-serve outlet that can serve up to 14oz beverages. Both sides can’t be used simultaneously, but they’re both very useful. The single serve side is compatible with K cups.

Features available on the machine include a programmable timer, auto-on and auto-off, and convenient controls. The programmable function is only available on the carafe side – the single serve cannot be set to brew automatically.

Pros

  • Excellent dual coffee maker with carafe brewing and single-serve options
  • Good value for money
  • Auto-pause and serve function

Cons

  • Takes a long time to brew coffee – even the single-serve side needs three minutes

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9. Cuisinart DGB-900BC Grind & Brew Thermal 12-Cup Automatic Coffeemaker

Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Thermal Coffee Maker 49966

Cuisinart DGB-900BC Grind & Brew Thermal 12-Cup Automatic Coffeemaker includes an integrated burr grinder. It is often suggested that for best results, coffee must be ground right before it is brewed. With an integrated grinder, this coffee maker ensures you always use freshly ground coffee. Plus, using an integrated grinder saves space and is less of a hassle.

The coffee maker brews 12 cups and includes the most popular features. These include 24-hour programmable brewing, brew-pause feature, auto shut-off, auto grind-off, charcoal water filter, and a gold tone permanent filter. When brewing coffee, you can manually select the brew strength from the available options of strong, medium or mild. 

Cuisinart DGB-900BC Grind & Brew Thermal 12-Cup Automatic Coffeemaker has a 60 oz thermal carafe and an 8oz bean hopper to hold the beans. 

Pros

  • Quality coffee maker with integrated grinder
  • Programmable coffee maker with auto-on and auto-off functions
  • Brew-pause and serve function
  • Brew size and brew strength selection

Cons

  • Can be troublesome to clean

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Buying Guide For Your Thermal Carafe Coffee Maker

Consider Features And Value For Money

For most coffee makers, a thermal carafe variant will be more expensive than conventional glass carafe options. Also, look at other features you want in your coffee maker. The good part is that most coffee makers have variants available for thermal and glass carafes, so you don’t necessarily have to pick the features for your favored carafe. 

Even so, make it a point to check the feature list and see what works best for you. While a thermal carafe is awesome, it usually isn’t the only quality to base a buying decision on.

Thermal Carafe VS Glass Carafe

There are subtle changes in the coffee makers depending on their favored carafe. For example, a glass carafe is often accompanied by a hot plate to keep the coffee at the right temperature. Meanwhile, a thermal carafe has no use for a hot plate.

It is important to note that while a glass carafe sits on a hot plate, the coffee inside the carafe continues to brew. Keeping the coffee on the plate for too long can cause over-extraction and the coffee turning bitter. A good rule of thumb is to avoid keeping the hot plate on for more than 30 minutes. Thermal carafes usually don’t run this risk of over-extraction.

Glass carafes are easy to break. Thermal carafes are often robust since they’re made from stainless steel. Additionally, since the thermal carafes are not beholden to hot plates on the machine, they can be placed anywhere and could be considered more portable for specific situations (not that we expect anyone to travel holding a carafe)!

Another major point is cost. Thermal carafes cost significantly more than glass carafes. In many cases, they can be a significant part of the cost of the coffee maker itself. 

Finally, while most glass carafes are dishwasher safe and can be easily cleaned, thermal carafes require more effort. As a general rule, double-walled and insulated stainless steel carafes don’t play well with dishwashers. Cleaning will have to be manual to ensure a long life for the carafe.

FAQs For Thermal Carafe Coffee Makers

What Is A Thermal Coffee Carafe?

A thermal coffee carafe is usually made from steel with a double-walled and insulated construction. They work as a regular carafe for your coffee maker. However, being insulated, they minimize heat loss and keep the coffee hot for longer. 

Since the carafe doesn’t need an external heat source like the hot plate, the danger of over-extraction and burnt coffee taste is reduced. An additional advantage is that their stainless steel construction makes thermal carafes very robust and dependable.

Are Coffee Carafes Interchangeable?

Unfortunately, no. Some carafes are compatible with several machines across different brands, but there is no universal carafe. As such, it is difficult to say if a carafe from your coffee machine would work with another.

Some carafes can work with popular coffee makers like those from Hamilton Beach, Cuisinart, Black & Decker, Mr. Coffee, etc. Do keep in mind, that though several models may be able to use carafes interchangeably, there is no guarantee of compatibility. 

How Long Will A Thermal Carafe Keep Coffee Hot?

A good quality thermal carafe will easily keep coffee hot for up to 2 hours. Many of these may have coffee fairly hot even after 4-6 hours. However, as you’ll notice, most coffee makers often avoid claiming more than 2 hours of time for their thermal carafe. 

That’s because even in a well-insulated thermal carafe, coffee will lose heat and start getting cold. Usually, 2 hours is a pretty good time to get piping hot coffee. Of course, coffee won’t immediately cool down and will continue to lose temperature for several hours. In many cases, you might get “acceptably hot” coffee after 4-6 hours, even if it isn’t piping hot.

Bottom Line — The Choice Of Thermal Carafe Coffee Makers

Thermal carafes are reliable, robust, and keep the coffee hot for a long time. It makes sense that we favor them for our coffee-brewing needs. Given the popularity of these carafes, there are a lot of options to consider when picking the best thermal carafe coffee maker.

Our top choice for this category is the Cuisinart Stainless Steel Thermal Coffeemaker, which is an excellent 12-cup coffee maker. If you need more options, consider the SCAA approved Cuisinart CPO-850 Coffee Brewer, 8 Cup.

Better yet, explore the options here and look at some more, so you can be sure you pick up the coffee maker that’s right for your own requirements and preferences.