A Guide To Espresso Cups + The 5 Best Picks On Amazon
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People who love espresso are our people. Those who brew it often obsess over it, dialing in every detail in pursuit of the perfect shot. Espresso lovers typically keep an arsenal of tools at their disposal and may collect multiple iterations of the same tool (yep, we do that, too), including espresso cups. You can never have too many, right?
But what makes espresso cups unique? Traditional espresso cups are designed to hold a very small amount of coffee, usually between 2-3 ounces, and are typically made of ceramic or glass.
But, for many, espresso is best enjoyed with milk as a latte, cappuccino, or flat white. For this reason, espresso cups are available in sizes up to 16 ounces to accommodate larger, milk-based beverages.
When selecting an espresso cup, it’s essential to consider both material and size, how you’ll use the cups, and how and where you will store them when not in use. There are several styles and sizes to choose from, so we’ve narrowed the list down to five of our favorite everyday cups and mugs for espresso.
Best Espresso Cups
We know that for true coffee enthusiasts, the type of cup you drink your espresso from is almost as important as the quality of the coffee itself. Whether you prefer a classic design or something a little more modern, we’ve got you covered.
Our list includes cups of different sizes, materials, and styles to suit every taste and budget. So without further ado, here are our top picks for the best espresso cups on the market.
The Fellow Monty Milk Art Coffee Cups are a great option if you’re looking for a stylish and functional espresso cup and you enjoy experimenting with latte art. They are available in various sizes, from 3 oz to 12 oz, depending on how you intend to use the cup (with or without milk).
- The design of the interior base curvature slope makes it perfect for latte art.
- Monty’s sleek and polished copper bottom complements the matte white ceramic finish.
- Dishwasher safe (do not microwave)
- The stackable design makes for efficient storage.
- The ceramic cup is very lightweight and less robust than some other options.
- It doesn’t keep coffee hot for an extended period.
- The white cup may stain over time.
We recently tried out the Fellow Monty Milk Art Coffee Cups and were impressed with the overall design and functionality. The interior base curvature slope makes it easy to create latte art, and the polished copper bottom adds a touch of sophistication to the overall look. (they are also available in black with a graphite base).
One downside is that the cup feels very lightweight, a pro and a con, and may make it less sturdy than other options. Additionally, it doesn’t keep coffee hot for an extended period, so there may be better options if you like to savor your espresso slowly.
Overall, the Fellow Monty Milk Art Coffee Cups are a great choice if you’re looking for a stylish and functional espresso cup. The stackable design makes them easy to store, and the matte ceramic finish gives them a modern look that will complement any kitchen décor.
If you’re limited on counter space (and your espresso machine lacks a large warming tray), the Sweese Porcelain Stackable Cappuccino Cups are a great option. They are both stylish and functional, with an included rack to keep the cups neatly stored when not in use.
- The cups have a classic design that fits perfectly with your espresso maker, and the included saucers and stacking stand gives them a cafe look.
- With a capacity of 8 ounces, these cups are perfect for various beverages, including cappuccino, latte, or Americano.
- Durable and safe for use in the dishwasher, microwave, oven, and freezer.
- The cups are a bit heavy, making them difficult to hold for extended periods.
- The ceramic is relatively thick, making them a bit bulky and taking up more space in your kitchen.
- The stacking stand is a little flimsy and may hold up poorly over time.
Overall, the Sweese Porcelain Stackable Cappuccino Cups are an excellent choice for anyone on a budget who’s looking for a simple and functional set of espresso cups. They’re durable, versatile, and have a classic look that fits any kitchen decor.
If your style is less modern and more boho-chic, this gorgeous set of ceramic mugs with a natural, earthy vibe from Mora Ceramics is a fantastic option.
- The lead-free glaze ensures worry-free enjoyment.
- The neutral colors inspired by minerals from the earth look great by themselves or in a set.
- The classic saucer protects your table from drips.
- Mora customer service is top-notch, and they’ll refund 100% of your purchase within 30 days, no questions asked.
- The cups are on the smaller side, so they may not be suitable for those who prefer a large espresso mug.
- The cups are not technically stackable, which may take up more space in your kitchen.
- The cups are hand wash only, which may not be convenient for those who prefer dishwasher-safe items.
We love the Mora Ceramics set because it is an exceptional value for high-quality, beautifully-made stoneware. The lead-free glaze is a huge plus; the neutral colors look great in any kitchen. The classic saucer is also a nice touch and adds practicality to the set.
These cups are 8 ounces, the perfect size for a flat white or latte, but may not be best for those who prefer extra-large espresso cups. The cups are not technically stackable, but they nestle nicely into one another. We keep them stacked two high without any issues.
Overall, the Mora Ceramics set is a great option if you’re looking for an espresso cup and saucer set that reminds you to take a break and practice a little self-care. Plus, with their 30-day promise, you can try them out risk-free.
If ceramic mugs aren’t your jam but still prefer a latte-sized espresso mug for your daily fix, a double-walled, Borosilicate glass pick like these Corkcicle Glass Mugs is a great option.
- The double-walled, insulated glass keeps your espresso hot for longer without burning your hand.
- The easy-grip flat sides make it comfortable to hold and add a modern touch to the design.
- The set includes two matching 12 oz. glass mugs, perfect for sharing a cup of espresso with a friend.
- Hand washing is required, so dishwasher-safe options may be more convenient.
- The glass material may be fragile and breakable if not handled carefully.
- The price point may be higher compared to other espresso cup options.
We have several Corkcicle glass mugs, and enjoy the sleek and modern design. We love how incredibly lightweight they are, making them super comfortable to hold for long periods.
The double-walled, insulated glass keeps our espresso hot for longer without burning our hands, making it an excellent option for those who like to savor their coffee slowly.
The easy-grip flat sides of the mug make it comfortable in hand. The set includes two matching 12 oz. glass beverage mugs, perfect for sharing a cup of espresso with a friend.
It’s important to note that hand washing is required, which may not be as convenient as dishwasher-safe options. Additionally, the glass material may be fragile and prone to breaking if not handled carefully.
If you’re looking for a stylish and modern glass espresso cup that keeps your coffee hot for longer, the Corkcicle Glass Mug is an excellent option.
A smaller, traditional espresso cup might be the best option for those who take it without milk. We are big fans of the Folk Ceramics Leonard Double Walled Ceramic Espresso Cups.
- The double-wall insulation keeps your espresso warm for longer.
- The handleless design gives the cups a modern, minimalist look.
- The cups are stackable, making them easy to store.
- The cups are small, with a maximum capacity of 3oz.
- The cups can get hot to the touch.
- Pricey compared to other options on the market.
One thing that stands out with these stylish espresso cups is their quality and design. The double-wall insulation keeps the espresso warm for longer than other cups we’ve used, which is a nice feature on busy, multi-tasking mornings.
The handleless design might take some getting used to if you’re used to traditional espresso cups, but we find them quite comfortable to hold. Remember that these cups are small (read: tiny), with a maximum capacity of 3oz.
These are designed for espresso only and do not allow room for milk. The benefit of using a tiny espresso cup like this is that it fits easily in any espresso machine, whereas some of the larger mugs on this list may pose challenges depending on your machine and portafilter.
We like to keep a set of these on hand for times when we’re pulling shots for larger iced lattes and won’t be using the same cup to drink from. While they’re a bit pricey compared to other options on the market, the quality and design make them worth the investment.
When buying espresso cups, there are a few things to consider to ensure you choose the best product.
Espresso cups can be made from various materials, including ceramic, glass, stainless steel, and even plastic. Ceramic and glass cups are the most popular choices; they provide decent heat retention and are easy to clean.
Stainless steel cups are also a great option if you want something durable and long-lasting, but they may impart a metallic taste to the coffee.
Espresso cups come in a range of sizes, typically ranging from 2 to 16 ounces. Your size will depend on how you take your espresso. If you prefer to make lattes, cappuccinos, or other milk-based espresso drinks, you may want to invest in larger espresso cups that can accommodate higher-volume beverages.
But be sure to measure the space beneath your portafilter to ensure that whatever cup you choose will fit comfortably beneath the spout (or perhaps consider a bottomless portafilter if your beloved cup won’t fit).
All of our larger picks above have a shorter, wider design that fits well with the espresso machines we typically use (currently testing the Ascaso Steel Duo PID V2), but check your machine before ordering.
Espresso cups come in various designs, from classic and simple to more modern and unique. They come with or without handles, so consider how you will use the cups and whether you prefer to have something to hold onto while consuming your morning beverage.
Some espresso cups may also feature double-walled insulation or special coatings to help retain heat. Consider what design features are important to you and what will fit in with your personal style (and whether the cups will be stored in plain sight on your counter or tucked away in a cabinet).
Espresso cups can vary widely in price, with some sets costing only a few bucks and others costing upwards of $50 or more. Consider your budget and what features are most important to you when choosing a set of cups.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the ideal size for an espresso cup?
The ideal size for an espresso cup is the size that works best for the drinks you enjoy preparing. In other words, there is no one-size-fits-all cup.
Most espresso cups are between 2 to 4 ounces, while a cortado, cappuccino, or latte cup will be up to 12 ounces. Smaller cups are designed for espresso only, while larger volume cups accommodate milk for various espresso drinks.
What materials are best for espresso cups?
Espresso cups can be made from various materials, including ceramic, glass, or stainless steel. Ceramic and glass cups are the best options, as they do not affect the taste of the coffee and retain heat decently well.
Stainless steel cups are also a good choice, as they are durable and keep the coffee hot for extended periods, but they may leave a metallic taste behind.
What is the difference between an espresso cup and a regular coffee cup?
The main difference between espresso and regular coffee cups is the size. Traditional espresso cups are much smaller than standard American coffee cups, typically holding only 2 to 3 ounces of liquid. Espresso cups are also designed to retain heat, as espresso is best served hot.
Why are some espresso cups double-walled?
Double-walled espresso cups are designed to keep the coffee hot for extended periods. The double-walled design creates an insulating layer of air between the two walls, which helps keep the coffee hot while preventing the outside of the cup from getting too hot to hold.
What are the benefits of using a demitasse spoon with espresso?
Using a demitasse spoon with espresso allows you to stir the coffee and sugar (if desired) together, ensuring that the flavors are evenly distributed. The small size of the spoon is designed to fit perfectly with a traditional (tiny) espresso cup, just reaching the bottom of the cup where the sugar tends to settle.
How do I properly clean and care for my espresso cups?
Espresso cups should be hand washed with mild soap and warm water. Avoid using abrasive sponges or harsh chemicals, as these can damage the cups. Rinse the cups thoroughly and dry them immediately after washing. Store the cups in a dry, cool place to prevent damage.