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Breville Barista Express Review

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine


  • Hands-free operation
  • Grind size control
  • Single or double shot espresso
  • Thermocoil, pre-infusion, and an automatic purge
  • Sleek brushed stainless steel finish
  • Design
  • Functionality
  • Price

Our Rating: 4.7/5

Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine


  • Hands-free operation
  • Grind size control
  • Single or double shot espresso
  • Thermocoil, pre-infusion, and an automatic purge
  • Sleek brushed stainless steel finish
  • Design
  • Functionality
  • Price

Breville Barista Express Review Summary

Breville’s Barista Express Espresso machine is the perfect example of why Breville is revered in the home coffee space. The company, which was founded in Sydney in 1932, distributes a range of kitchen essentials 70 plus countries worldwide and has a reputation for excellence.

The BES870XL is a great choice if you’re looking for quality and sophistication at home. It has automated pressure, an auto-purge, and Thermocoil technology. Thanks to the integrated pre-infusion function, temperature regulation and flushing are spot on. An included steam wand gives you control of your milk froth texture, and you can even determine your grind size.

Weighing in at 23 pounds and featuring a 62-ounce reservoir, this isn’t a small coffee maker, but it’s not going to dominate your counter either. A brushed stainless steel finish keeps it looking sleek and means it should suit any kitchen’s decor.

Choose between single or double shot espresso, or use hot water from the unit to prepare tea or other drinks.

One drawback is that it’s not immediately user-friendly; you will need a little time to perfect your coffee making. While the controls are well designed, there are a few of them to master.

The Breville Barista Express isn’t a machine for minimalists or those who race against time because it emphasizes quality over convenience. That said, it’s worth investing in for the moments when you can savor the pro-level coffee it produces.


  • Automated pressure and temperature regulation
  • Auto purge
  • Grind size control
  • Dispenses hot water for instant drinks
  • Single or double shot espresso


    • There’s a learning curve
    • It’s high maintenance
    • Not made for convenience

    Features and Benefits of the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine

    True to Breville, the Barista Express Espresso machine has many quality features and functions to take advantage of. The only caveat is that unlike many coffee makers, the BES870XL’s highlights are beneath the surface. Allow me to break it down for you.

    Superior Coffee Grinder

    If you’re not a coffee machine aficionado, you may not know there are two different types of coffee grinders: blade grinders and burr grinders.

    Think of the former as you would a blender, rotating blades chop coffee beans until they’re small enough to brew.

    Burr grinders, on the other hand, crush coffee beans through a funnel. They are adjustable, far more durable (because blades won’t dull), retain more flavor, and yield consistent grinds for smoother brews.

    For these reasons, burr grinders are generally considered superior to blade grinders.

    Guess which one the Breville Barista Express BES870XL has built in? (Hint: It starts with b and ends with urr).

    Your espresso will be consistently smooth and flavorful because of this addition. Even better, a handy dial gives you control of your grind size and quantity so you can have ultra-fresh coffee your way.

    Automatic Regulation

    When dealing with simpler coffee makers, user temperature control is understandably a big deal. We all have our preferences after all, and if our joe is too hot or too cold, we won’t enjoy it as much. That’s with ordinary coffee, though, espresso is the exact opposite.

    Espresso is made by quickly forcing hot, pressurized water through tightly packed grounds. This blast is what extracts flavor, and gives espresso its thicker, stronger characteristics. For this process to work well, the temperature and pressure must be precise.

    The Breville Barista BES870XL takes care of this for you. Using Thermocoil and pre-infusion technologies, temperature and pressure are automatically optimized to best suit your espresso. Pre-infusion works by gradually increasing the pressure to evenly extract flavor from the grinds.

    Another handy feature is the auto-purge that adjusts the heat after the steam is applied to maintain optimal espresso temperature. It’s also an important function when it comes to preserving your espresso maker’s longevity.

    Amazing Accessories

    Even though the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine BES870XL shines in its features that lie below the surface, it comes with many cool external additions you’ll appreciate.

    Here’s what you get with your machine:

    • A dose trimming tool to accurately measure grounds for brewing
    • A 54 mm stainless steel portafilter
    • One and two-cup dual wall filter baskets
    • A coffee scoop
    • A stainless steel milk jug
    • A cleaning disc, brush, and tool, as well as an Allen key and cleaning tablets
    • A water filter and water filter holder

    Simplified Maintenance

    You wouldn’t want your Breville Barista Express to pack in before its time. Since it’s an intricate machine, maintenance is extra-important. There a few features that will help you keep it in good condition.

    Firstly, its reservoir and spill tray are detachable for easy rinsing. It also features a light-up alert that notifies you when it’s time to clean your machine.

    Secondly, the included cleaning accessories and Allen key help when you need to get in there and give your Barista Express a good servicing. Not to mention that the machine has a brushed stainless steel finish, which adds to its durability.

    Micro-Foam Texturing

    You can use the integrated steam wand to hand texture your froth meaning you can make your froth exactly the way you like it. If you’re into a little cappuccino art, create a dense yet pourable foam and draw leaves on your coffee, for example. It all adds to the home cafe experience the Breville Barista Express offers.

    Variety in Drinks

    Espressos aren’t the only perk of owning the Breville Barista Express. It can make Americano coffee, lattes, and cappuccinos too. Don’t forget that you can also choose between single or double shot espresso as well.

    If all else fails, there’s a hot water option included, for those days that you crave tea or a hot chocolate.

    Considering that you can control your grind size and milk froth too, it’s worth emphasizing that this espresso maker goes above and beyond in terms of customization.

    What Do Users Say About the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine BES870XL?

    I want to shout it from the rooftops: The Breville Barista Express espresso machine is pretty close to perfection. I stand by that. 

    But what do users have to say after purchasing this machine? I looked into customer reviews to find out.

    Satisfied buyers appreciate how consistently and seamlessly this machine works. Many users compliment the quality espresso with some even going so far as to say that it makes the best espresso they’ve ever had.

    They also mention that the machine is easier to maintain than others of its kind and tip their hats to Breville for all the included accessories.

    The most prominent criticism from dissatisfied buyers is that over-complicated workings deterred them from making the most of it. It seems the learning curve is its biggest pitfall.

    That said, the vast majority of buyers recommend this machine as one of the best on the market.

    Alternatives To The Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine

    I’ve established that the Breville Barista Express espresso machine is a worthy machine, but what if it’s beyond your means or you’re looking for something simpler?

    Here are three machines that I think are the best alternatives.

    This espresso maker matches the Breville Barista Express’ features but is significantly more affordable. It includes a 15-bar pump, pre-infusion, and Thermoblock temperature regulation, and has a similar (albeit simpler) design.

    Like the Barista Express, there are some freebies thrown in, including a milk jug, tamper, and cleaning pin.

    User-friendly design

    Hot water and steam function

    Accessories included

    Mr. Coffee’s Espresso and Cappuccino maker can save you money, time, and effort. Its one-touch interface wins in terms of convenience, and if the learning curve of the Barista Express is too much, this machine may suit. Just bear in mind the coffee quality will not be the same as with the Barista Express.

    The machine isn’t lacking in power with a 15-bar pump and it can make espressos, cappuccinos, and lattes from grinds.

    One-Touch interface

    Automated milk frother

    Makes a variety of coffees


    The Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine is an excellent machine by almost all standards. It’s designed to produce perfect espresso consistently, but as it does much more than that, it’s really a multi-purpose machine.

    It’s equipped to suit your most fastidious coffee preferences and is worth the investment if you’re looking for a machine that makes coffee exactly how you like it.

    Plus, the Barista Express makes amazing quality coffee thanks to its sophisticated heat and pressure systems.

    However, it is a more complicated machine and won’t suit if you just want convenience. You will have to put some effort into both learning how to use the coffee maker and keeping it in good working order.

    If you’re up for the task, the reward is excellent coffee day in and day out.

    Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine FAQs

    Can the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine Make Coffee?

    Yes. It can make Americano style coffee but not filter or drip coffee. It also makes lattes and cappuccinos.

    Is the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine Suitable for Commercial Use?

    Yes and no. The Breville Barista Express is intended for home use and may not meet the demands of a commercial cafe. It does, however, make cafe-quality coffee.

    How Long Will the Breville Barista Express Espresso Machine Last?

    Some reports say that with correct and frequent maintenance the Barista Express can last up to six years. Upon purchase, you’ll receive a one-year limited warranty.