Espresso cups are one of those coffee tools that many people think they just don’t need. However, there are some important reasons to use an espresso cup when you are enjoying this robust coffee drink.
Not only does the smaller cup keep your espresso warmer, but it is also easier to accurately determine when your espresso shot is perfectly pulled.
There are plenty of espresso cups out there, and it can be a chore to decide which ones are best. So, to help you select the best espresso cups, we’ve put together this handy buying guide.
Follow along with us and we’ll give you some helpful buying advice, and five of our favorite espresso cups out there today.
How to Choose the Best Espresso Cups
Choosing the best espresso cup for your home doesn’t seem like a difficult task. But when you start shopping and realize how many different styles, shapes, colors, and options, it can quickly become a challenging task.
To help make this shopping task easier, we’ve put together a basic buying guide. Here we’ll give you the product features that you should consider when shopping for the perfect espresso cups.
Price is probably not the biggest consideration when it comes to shopping for espresso cups. However, it should be something you pay attention to. In general, you won’t find sets of espresso cups that are terribly expensive.
On the high end, you’ll notice that espresso cups will cost you less than $15 per cup. On average, you should expect to spend around $4 to $6 per cup.
At this price, you will get a good product, and this price range offers the greatest amount of variety in material, the number of cups per set, and the best size for your espresso maker.
You’ll find that most espresso cups come in just a few different types of materials. The one you select really is based on what you prefer, your budget, and where you’ll be using your espresso cups.
- Ceramic – Most espresso cups you’ll find are made from ceramic. This material is fairly durable and is good at holding heat. Ceramics is the same kind of material that most coffee mugs are made from. The great thing about ceramic is that it comes in all sorts of colors, shapes, and types. Ceramics ranges from delicate porcelain to heavy-duty stoneware.
- Glass – This is a good choice if you want to brew your espresso directly into your cup and want to monitor the blend of espresso and crema. Glass tends to be less durable than ceramic. Also if you want to have better heat retention with glass, you’ll need to look for glass cups that are double-walled.
- Stainless Steel – We like stainless steel cups for espresso on the go. If you enjoy your espresso when traveling or camping, stainless steel is a great pick. It’s also nice if you want to enjoy your espresso on the way to work in the morning. Stainless steel is very durable and lightweight. Many stainless steel espresso cups come with lids. The one downfall to stainless steel is that some people think that it lends a metallic taste to their espresso.
When you are considering the capacity of the espresso cups that are best for your needs, you need to think about how much espresso you like to enjoy at one time. If you just want a single shot and don’t ever plan on having more, a 2-ounce cup is great.
However, if you want to enjoy a doppio (double shot) or a cortado, look for a 4 ounce cup. A 4-ounce cup really gives you more versatility in how you can utilize your espresso cups.
If you want to make cappuccinos or lattes, look for a 6-ounce cup. At this capacity, however, this is more a coffee cup than an espresso cup.
Design and Durability
If you just can’t count on being completely together before your morning coffee, the durability of the espresso cup you select is really going to be an important factor. When it comes to durability, we like stainless steel.
You can drop it, toss it around, or even hand it off to your toddler and it’s going to come back in relatively decent shape. Glass and ceramic both tend to break and chip if dropped, so you may want to consider who and where you’ll be using these materials as you are making your choice.
When it comes to design, we think about color, shape, and details. There are so many fun colored espresso cups, and some even come with delicate designs or painted details. If you want your cup to be as attractive as your espresso machine look for cups with these little details that make them unique.
You may also want to consider how your new espresso cups mix with your current dishware. This may also be an important design consideration for your new espresso cups.
Quick Overview: Our Top Picks for Espresso Cups
|De'Longhi Double Walled Thermo Espresso Glasses||CHECK CURRENT PRICESee Customer Reviews|
|JoyJolt Savor Double Wall Insulated Espresso Mugs||CHECK CURRENT PRICESee Customer Reviews|
|Sweese 402.002 Espresso Cups with Saucers||CHECK CURRENT PRICESee Customer Reviews|
|Aozita Espresso Cups and Saucers with Espresso Spoons||CHECK CURRENT PRICESee Customer Reviews|
|Real Deal Steel "Little Sipper Insulated Espresso Cups||CHECK CURRENT PRICESee Customer Reviews|
Our Top 5 Five Best Espresso Cups
1. DeLonghi Double Walled Thermo Espresso Glasses
You certainly cannot go wrong with a product from DeLonghi. This is one of the best-known names in coffee tools, so it’s not hard to see why our favorite espresso cup comes from this brand.
This is not, however, your typical espresso cup. Most of us think about tiny little mugs when we imagine what we should serve our espresso in. The DeLonghi is a simple double-walled, shot glass.
These attractive, delicately styled espresso cups are great at keeping your espresso warm, thanks to the insulated glass design. The cups stack nicely for easy storage and are perfect for making a single shot of espresso.
Each cup holds 2 ounces of espresso. The clear glass allows you to perfectly balance your espresso and crema without guessing. Some espresso cups don’t fit well under the portafilter spouts of smaller espresso makers. These cups are a great exception to this challenge. The petite design fits nicely on your espresso machine, even if you are using a compact option.
The DeLonghi espresso cups are relatively durable. They are made from BPA-free borosilicate glass which is dishwasher safe and a bit more chip and drop resistant than other types of glass.
- Unique take on the express cup design
- Outside of the cup is cool while the espresso stays hot inside
- Surprisingly easy to hold
- Clear glass is easy to monitor the brewing process through
- Set only comes with two cups
- One of the more expensive options on the market
- Glass construction does tend to break when dropped
- Cups don’t have handles or saucers
2. JoyJolt Savor Double Wall Insulated Glasses Espresso Mugs
We do like the clear glass espresso cups. They are just a nice way to watch your espresso brew. Really there’s nothing more lovely than how freshly brewed espresso looks.
The JoyJolt Savor double-walled glass espresso mugs are a good alternative to the DeLonghi if you want a clear mug, but also want a handle and a lower price.
The JoyJolt is a more versatile espresso mug thanks to a larger 5.4-ounce capacity. This mug allows you to enjoy espresso, cortados, lattes, and cappuccinos all from the same cup. The double-walled construction means that your espresso drink will stay nice and hot, but the cup will be cool to the touch.
The JoyJolt insulated espresso mugs are made from borosilicate glass. This material is more lightweight than regular glass and is more durable as well. You’ll find that these cups won’t scratch as easily as other glass options.
- 4-ounce capacity provides more versatility
- Clear glass allows you to see your espresso shot progress
- Insulated cups are good for hot and cold beverages
- Dishwasher safe
- Affordable price
- Not a great option if you tend to drop things
- Only one color/finish is available
- Only comes in a set of 2 cups
3. Sweese Porcelain Espresso Cups with Saucers
We just can’t get over how fun the Sweese porcelain espresso cups are! These delightful 4-ounce espresso cups come in a set of 6 cups in six different colors. This is a great set if you want to bring a little fun to your kitchen.
The 4-ounce size of these espresso cups allows you to enjoy doppio espresso, single espresso shots, cortados, and even a small macchiato. Each cup comes with a matching 5.4-inch saucer, perfect for holding your spoon or even a small cookie or biscuit.
The Sweese espresso cups are made from durable porcelain. This material holds heat well and is lighter weight than stoneware options. We are often not huge fans of porcelain construction.
Some porcelain dishware is not dishwasher safe. The Sweese espresso cups are, however, dishwasher safe. They are also microwave safe, but we found they get kind of hot in the microwave.
The Sweese set is nice for entertaining. This brand also offers espresso cups in plain black and white options, and in three different capacities.
- Fun and stylish colors and design
- Durable porcelain construction
- 4-ounce size is great for a variety of drinks
- Dishwasher safe for easy cleaning
- Saucer duvet holds the cup in place fairly securely
- Good value for the price
- The cups don’t stack very well. The handles get in the way
- Seem a bit heavier than some other porcelain options
4. Aozita Espresso Cups and Saucers
If you are looking for an espresso cup that fits nicely into your modern kitchen, then look no further than the Aozita espresso cups and saucers. These simple, white cups are a nice addition to any kitchen, but their design lends nicely to modern, sleek kitchens.
The Aozita espresso cups hold 2.5 ounces of espresso, making them a nice pick if you are a purist and like to enjoy a simple shot of espresso without the frills.
These cups give you just a bit of extra space so you don’t have to worry about spilling your hard-earned espresso. Each cup fits nicely under the portafilter of most espresso machines.
This set of espresso cups is made from durable ceramic, making them lightweight and durable. They are dishwasher-safe as well as microwave and oven safe.
Each cup is designed to securely nest inside the opening of the cup below it, making for compact and secure storage. The matching saucers are perfect for holding your cup and are big enough to also hold a small espresso spoon.
Aozita espresso cups come in sets of four or six, so if you plan on entertaining, these are a nice option for your kitchen.
- Sleek and elegant design
- Cups stack securely into one another
- Made from chip-resistant, lead-free porcelain/ceramic
- Set comes with cups, saucers, and spoons
- Dishwasher and microwave safe.
- This set only comes in white
- Not as much capacity as other options
- Modern design doesn’t match all kitchen decor well
5. Real Deal Steel “Little Sipper 3 oz Insulated Espresso Cups
We just love the Real Deal Steel “Little Sipper” espresso cups. This is just a really unique and fun change of pace when it comes to the container you serve your espresso in.
We really like this option for enjoying your favorite espresso drink on the go. The 3-ounce size is perfect for a double shot of espresso, or a delicious cortado.
These cups are made from double-walled stainless steel, so they are ideal for keeping your coffee beverage nice and warm. Additionally, the stainless steel construction is more durable than glass or ceramic so you don’t have to worry about these cups chipping, cracking, or breaking if dropped. We think that these espresso cups are ideal for use in your RV, camper, or even in your backpack.
The Real Deal Steel espresso mugs come in a variety of colors, allowing you to easily coordinate your cups with your kitchen, RV, or vehicle. These definitely are a more casual option than glass or ceramic espresso cups, which may be a big selling point for some coffee lovers.
The Little Sippers are dishwasher safe, so if you’re using them at home, they are easy to clean. They are not microwave or oven safe, however.
- Made from durable 304 food-grade stainless steel
- Double-walled construction for great insulation and heat retention
- Handle is larger than many other espresso cups
- Come in a variety of colors and finishes
- Great for camping or on-the-go
- Some people think stainless steel makes coffee taste “metallic”
- The set of four is a little more expensive than other espresso cup sets
- Cups do not have saucers or lids
Best Espresso Cups – Final Thoughts
One of the fun things about enjoying an espresso at home is the ability to shop for the perfect espresso cups. The best espresso cups are those that perfectly fit with your drink size and type preferences, match your kitchen decor, and are durable enough for wherever you want to take them.
Our pick for the best espresso cups is the DeLonghi espresso glasses. These elegant espresso cups are a nice option for most kitchens and do nicely at keeping your espresso warm.
If you find that the DeLonghi espresso glasses don’t fit your needs, our buying guide should give you all the things to look for when selecting the perfect espresso cups for your coffee enjoyment.