Alex has never been professionally involved into the world of coffee, however he knows much more than any average barista. Being an avid coffee lover, Alex is constantly searching for new tips, tools, and techniques to make his morning cup of java even more perfect.
Mary has been dealing with coffee almost all her life long: in her teenage years, she worked as a barista in a number of well-known coffeehouses, later developing her knowledge and skills while studying at the university as well. Several years after graduation, she managed to open her own small coffee bar.
Last updated: July 22, 2021
Coffee Statistics is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Coffee Statistics is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Ninja is an established brand that is widely known for high-quality household appliances that provide a vast range of solutions. Among these are versatile coffee makers with different brewing options for iced, classic, rich and specialty coffee. This means that you don’t have to invest in more appliances to enjoy your favorite beverage.
These coffee makers come in a variety of sizes, and you can also select the serving you want to brew to ensure consistency at all times. We have reviewed the best Ninja coffee makers in the market, based on their quality, overall size, brew type and sizes, their water tank capacity, and the type of carafe included. Our recommendations provide options that will help you choose the right model for your individual needs.
Ninja CP307 is an affordable appliance that allows you to brew coffee and tea in as little time as possible. It offers 5 brew types; rich, cold brew, over ice, classic, and specialty. Users also have 6 brew sizes to choose from. The sizes range from a single cup, travel mug, half carafe to full carafe. The coffee maker comes with separate tea and coffee baskets to differentiate between the flavors of bagged tea and brewed coffee. The unit incorporates smart basket recognition system to identify and display the basket for tea or coffee.
Another technology included is thermal flavor extraction which maintains consistent temperature for optimal aroma and flavor. You can brew any brand of coffee as well as loose leaf or bagged tea. Brewing takes only 10 to 15 minutes. Ninja CP307 comes with a 50 oz thermal carafe, a long cord of 2.5 feet, a frother that conveniently folds away on a retractable arm, and components that are dishwasher safe.
Why did it make our list?
This coffee maker does not include a heating plate that can keep your drink hot for long. It would be a great addition because the filling lid has a hole that lets heat escape. Some users get around this by covering the hole with a rubber cap. Also, sometimes the 'Delay Brew' button resets the target brew size to Travel Mug which can cause coffee to overflow on the countertop if you had selected a smaller size.
What is not ideal about it?
We like the thermal flavor extraction technology which preserves coffee texture and aroma, and the smart basket recognition system which eliminates guesswork. The coffee maker also comes with multiple customizable settings for brew styles and sizes calibrated with an easily accessible dial at the front of the unit. You can quickly make iced coffee and cold brews, and the frother is ideal for whipping cream to make a cup of hot chocolate.
The black and stainless steel finish of Ninja CM407 lends it an elegant appearance, making it a Ninja specialty coffee maker that combines functionality and style. It features 4 varied brew strength and 6 brew sizes, starting from a single cup to a full carafe. Among the brew types are iced coffee and specialty for brewing coffee concentrate to make cappuccinos, macchiato and lattes. You can also choose rich brew for intense flavor, or classic brew for a balanced taste.
The coffee maker comes with a built-in and retractable frother, a cord that is 2.5 feet long, a removable water reservoir, and a 50 oz thermal carafe. Buyers also get an instruction booklet and a limited warranty of one year. The unit is pod-free which allows you to explore a variety of custom brews, and cleanup is a breeze because the parts are dishwasher safe.
Why are we impressed?
The coffee maker does not require pods. This saves you money on the cost per cup and also conserves the environment. It has a permanent filter and a coffee grounds measuring tool that indicates the right amount for your preferred brew type and brew size. We also like the removable water reservoir because it is easier to clean, and the keep warm option which can be extended to more than two hours.
What negatives must you be aware of?
It does not include an integrated storage for the frother attachment. You have to heat the milk separately to make warm froth since the frother does not have this ability. There are models with frothers that heat the milk as they generate steam for frothing. We would also like to have more sizes for brewing normal coffee. Currently, only half a pot and whole pot options are available with this coffee maker.
Ninja CE251 is a budget-friendly and lightweight model, weighing only 6.5 pounds. Additionally, it has water tank capacity of 60 oz and brewing capacity of 12 cups.
The coffee maker features an advanced boiler for hotter brewing and 24-hour programmable delay that allows you to set the brewing to your desired time such as a day later.
Another convenient feature is the adjustable warming plate that keeps your coffee hot for up to 4 hours while preserving its taste and aroma. The unit automatically shuts off after 2 hours. You can choose to make rich or classic coffee. The small batch function is used for brewing 4 cups, or less. Other notable features include a flavor straw, a permanent filter, a glass carafe, a cord that is 2.2 feet long, and dishwasher safe components.
Why is it special?
It has a large brewing capacity, a water reservoir that can be removed easily for cleaning or filling at the sink, an adjustable warming plate with auto shut-off function, and 24-hour delay capability. We also like the permanent filter that saves you money on constant replacement, and the flavor straw that maintains consistency by circulating coffee during brewing. Lastly, the mid-brew pause function allows you to enjoy a cup of coffee any time by pulling out the carafe.
What are the flaws?
We wish this Ninja coffee pot had more brew style options to choose from instead of rich and classic strengths only. The unit also generates a lot of steam, and some of the users suggest having a water tank lid that is perforated to prevent condensation forming on the sidewalls. Another minor inconvenience is that you may have to use strainers to prevent coffee grounds from getting into the pot.
Ninja CM401 comes with a smart scoop for accurate measurements, a 50 oz glass carafe with 10-cup capacity, a removable water reservoir, a user guide and a recipe guide. Also included are a gold-tone permanent filter and a built-in frother that conveniently retracts.
You can choose from 6 brew sizes, including a single cup, travel mug or a full carafe. The Ninja specialty coffee maker offers 3 other brew styles such as classic coffee, rich brew, and iced coffee, and you don’t have to use pods. The parts are dishwasher safe and a 2.5 ft cord length extends reach to power outlets for convenient placement.
What are its best features?
To avoid wasting coffee grounds, you can choose the size of coffee you want to brew. The available sizes are single cup, XL single cup, travel mug, XL travel mug, half carafe, or full carafe. There is a programmable delay brew function, and the coffee maker features onboard storage for the smart scoop to save space. Another space-saving feature is the integrated fold-away frother. In case of manufacturing defects, the product is covered by a 1-year limited warranty.
What could be improved?
Some coffee makers also steam milk, but not this model. To froth milk for an espresso style, the manufacturer advises you to heat the milk in a microwave before it is whisked by the frothing tool. We would also appreciate it if the measurements for the brew sizes were indicated in ounces just like on the peel-off sticker instead of using icons. Granted, the icons are still easy to figure out.
Ninja CF091 comes with a permanent and reusable stainless steel mesh filter to brew coffee grounds only. It is not designed for K-cups or pods. In addition to an integrated frother that folds away, Ninja CF091 also includes a long cord measuring 2.5 feet for extended reach, and a 50 oz glass carafe with a warming plate to keep your coffee hot for longer.
You can brew a Cup, XL Cup, Travel, XL Multi-Serve, Half Carafe, or Full Carafe sizes to customize output. Other customizable settings include 5 different brew types; Over Ice, Classic, Rich, Specialty for frozen-blended or layered coffee, and Café Forte for a complex, full-bodied flavor. Serve black, or with 1 to 3 ounces of frothed milk. It is advisable to preheat this Ninja specialty coffee maker for 3 minutes for a hot cup of coffee.
Why is it special?
It offers a variety of choices for brew types and serving sizes that allow you to experiment with varied blends. The included 20 recipes are great to start you off. You can turn the keep warm function on and off. We also like the onboard storage for the frother so it stays out of the way when it’s not in use. Lastly, the Over Ice Brew option is slightly concentrated to avoid the ice offsetting the coffee flavor.
What are the flaws?
This coffee maker does not have a programmable delay brew that enables you to schedule brewing to your preferred time. There are a few complaints about the cleaning light staying on regardless of what you do, the unit leaking water from underneath and making 5 beeps constantly, and some products malfunctioning after a while. However, there is a 1-year limited warranty to insure the coffee maker against any manufacturing defects.
Things to Consider
Ninja specialty coffee makers are popular with buyers because they are made of durable materials and they have versatile functionality and convenient features that are easy to use. They are also available at different price points for varied budgets. By the end of this comprehensive guide, you will know more about the Ninja brand, how to use their coffee pots, and the important features to look for before buying a Ninja coffee maker.
What is Ninja brand – 100 words about the brand
Ninja is innovative kitchen appliances brand whose products feature streamlined designs, multiple functions that are user-friendly and affordable pricing. It is a leading company in the industry with products that include Ninja coffee makers, blenders, air fryers, multicookers, and food processors.
The Company was founded in 1993and rebranded in 2015. It is based in Needham, Massachusetts, not far from Boston. Currently, it has presence in ten countries and sells at least 150 products.
Ninja brand’s convenience and innovation are affirmed by more than 550 patents. It is a sister brand to Shark by SharkNinja Operating LLC which also makes high-quality vacuums.
How to use Ninja coffee makers
Prime the coffee maker before initial use by filling the reservoir with fresh water and running Full Carafe brew cycle twice; Discard the water after the first cycle, refill the tank and repeat the cycle.
Use the recommended medium grind size which pairs well with the permanent filter. Otherwise, use a paper filter for finer grind.
Push the brew basket all in to place it correctly. Otherwise, the unit will start beeping to alert you.
For mid-brew coffee, close the drip to pause brewing and pour the coffee into a cup, then open the drip to continue brewing.
For specialty coffee, the size is always 4 oz. of coffee.
If making hot froth, heat the milk in a microwave for 45 to 60 seconds.
Clean your Ninja specialty coffee maker as soon as possible to optimize efficiency and lifespan. Take out the removable parts and clean them with a soapy sponge or in a dishwasher. Descale occasionally with water and white vinegar to clear buildup that will affect performance or impart odd taste to your coffee.
It seems that there is a Ninja coffee maker for every budget; we have reviewed Ninja CE251 which costs less than $100 and boasts of 12-cup capacity and programmable functions such as 24-hour delay brew and mid-brew pause. The more advanced models are multifunctional and they have competitive pricing if you pit them against comparable models in the market.
How to pick the best Ninja coffee maker
You could be shopping for a starter single-cup model or the best Ninja specialty coffee maker which offers a variety of quantities and styles, not just rich or classic options. Either way, our analysis of the most important features to consider when choosing a Ninja coffee maker will help you make an informed decision.
When choosing the best Ninja coffee pot, you should factor in your coffee preferences as well as how much and how often you drink coffee. Fortunately, there are Ninja models that provide a variety of options that cater to a broad range of coffee types.
A good example is Ninja CP307 which provides 5 options for coffee strength, is compatible with all coffee brands, and also allows you to brew bagged or loose leaf tea. Below are the 5 brew types available with this model:
Classic: This is available in all the Ninja models. It is your typical cup of coffee.
Rich: All Ninja coffee makers have this setting which makes coffee with intense flavor minus the bitterness. The flavor is between classic coffee and espresso.
Iced coffee: It is also known as over ice coffee because you pour hot coffee over ice without the the ice overpowering the coffee flavor. The resulting drink is a bit concentrated.
Cold-brew: This feature is only included in newer Ninja models. This type of coffee is brewed for 15 minutes at a cooler temperature to yield a smoother flavor. However, it doesn’t taste exactly like the sweet, rich flavor of a typical cold brew because it uses heated water and is brewed for a short time. On the other hand, a cold brew generally takes several hours and the coffee grounds are not exposed to hot water.
Specialty: This is the setting that uses coffee concentrate to make espresso-type drinks such as latte or cappuccino. The flavor is close to espresso but it is brewed without pressure.
Ninja CF091 also offers 5 coffee styles, including Café Forte which is usually found in older Ninja specialty coffee makers. Café Forte enhances the qualities of the coffee grounds you are using to yield a beverage with complex, full-bodied flavor that can be taken black.
Although it may not match the flavor of a traditional cold brew, the cold brew setting in Ninja coffee makers is fast and convenient because it only takes 15 minutes for you to get a cup of cold brewed coffee. The models we have recommended take 10 to 15 minutes to brew your desired coffee, or tea.
Most of the products also feature Delay Brew function which allows you to program your coffee to be brewed at your desired time. This means you can activate this setting at night and wake up to a ready cup of coffee. You can even delay brewing to up to 24 hours.
If brewing a full carafe is taking longer than your thirst can allow, simply activate the Drip Stop setting and pour the coffee into your cup mid-brew.
Your coffee habits will determine the best product tailored to meet that need. The good thing is that most of the Ninja specialty coffee makers we have featured come with various coffee size settings; single cup, XL single cup, travel mug, XL travel mug, half carafe, or full carafe. This versatile function ensures you and any guests always have coffee on demand.
The single cup option is ideal because you won’t have to use a lot of grounds, and unlike pod models, you can choose your own coffee grounds.
There is also a Small Batch setting for brewing one to four cups without weakening the flavor.
A lot of Ninja coffee pots come with a built-in frother placed on a retractable arm so it folds away when not in use. The frother whips milk to make hot cholate, cappuccinos, lattes, and other café-style drinks. For hot beverage, you have to heat the milk separately.
Water tank capacity
The water tank capacity is directly related to brewing capacity. For instance, 10-cup models like Ninja CM401comes with 50 oz water tank while Ninja CE251 which brews up to 12 cups at once features a water tank of 60 oz capacity.
Some budget-friendly models use all the water in the tank to brew a small batch of coffee. However, Ninja specialty coffee makers only use the amount of water it needs to make your desired coffee size. This eliminates guesswork, prevents refilling the reservoir constantly, and also avoids diluting small batches of coffee.
You will notice that some Ninja specialty coffee makers such as Ninja CP307 feature a thermal carafe while budget-friendly models like Ninja CE251 come with a glass carafe. Thermal carafes are considered superior because they keep the drink fresh for longer by using the heat trapped during brewing. This is in contrast to glass carafes which work with a hotplate that increases temperature that could cause the coffee to have a burnt taste.
A popular selling point of Ninja products is the amount of money and space they save by having several functions in one unit to reduce the number of appliances required. They can make variable styles of tea and coffee including cold brew in various servings, and also froth milk and cream.
However, you still have to confirm their measurements to ensure they can fit in the space available on your counter top and there is enough clearance under the cabinets to fit their vertical design.
The Ninja specialty products we have reviewed mostly weigh approximately 12 pounds which is manageable. We have also included the lightweight Ninja CE251 which is half as heavy at 6.5 pounds.
Durability and warranty
If you read the numerous user reviews, you will find that several users have had their Ninja coffee pots for years without any issues. They attribute this to high quality, user-friendly functions and ease of cleaning because the parts are dishwasher safe. The featured products are covered by a 1-year limited warranty.
Extra features and accessories
Warmer plate: You will find it in Ninja coffee pots that come with a glass carafe. You can program it to keep the coffee hot or warm and set the warming time before it auto shuts off.
Permanent filter: This is an eco-friendly and cost-saving option that eases maintenance. Additionally, filters made of paper might absorb oils that are responsible for the rich coffee flavor and aroma.
Ninja coffee makers are easy to clean because the parts are removable and dishwasher safe so you can deep clean any residual grounds. Besides that, a cleaning indicator light illuminates to remind you when the unit is due for cleaning. When this happens, use water and white vinegar for the clean cycle to descale mineral buildup in the coffee maker.
We have reviewed models with brewing capacity of 10 or 12 cups, which is ideal for a small or mid-sized family. We recommend buying any Ninja specialty coffee maker that offers a wide range of sizes for custom output. They feature small batch setting for up to 4 cups, and the sizes range from a cup to a full carafe for when you have guests.
No, they don’t. They work with coffee grounds. The manufacturer recommends medium grind size which also reduces the amount of sediment in your brewed drink when using the permanent filter that comes with Ninja coffee pots.
Ninja CP307 is a great example of what Ninja specialty coffee makers are all about; multi-functional and user-friendly features in a relatively compact design. It boasts of 5 brew styles and 6 different quantities for custom serving sizes. What’s more, it can brew tea or coffee in 15 minutes.
Ninja CM407 claimed the second spot because it offers 4 brew types and 6 brew sizes, providing users with several adjustable options for their preferred coffee. It is pod-free and easy to clean. We also like the thermal carafe, the integrated frother with convenient storage, and the sleek design that looks good on the counter top.
Ninja CE251 is one of the best Ninja coffee makers we have reviewed because it has little to no competition when it comes to its price-performance ratio. Despite its cost and weight, it has impressive brewing capacity of 12 cups, an adjustable warming plate and a 24-hour programmable delay brew.