Making coffee in a camper van rental from Outdoorsy

What is the Best RV Coffee Maker? (2023 Guide)

For us, RVing and coffee go hand in hand. But, as you probably know, there is not much counter space when it comes to RV kitchens.

So we did some research to figure out what the best RV coffee maker was, and you know what we found out? There are several options.

best rv coffe maker options

It depends on what kind of coffee you like, the amount of space you have, if you do a lot of off the grid camping and more to decide what the best option is for you.

Over the years we’ve toured a lot of different set ups for people who are RVing full-time, part-time or taking a weekend RV trip.

We’ve seen an entire counter in a large 5th wheel dedicated to a fancy espresso machine and a compact campervan that only has room for a small French press.

So we’ve rounded up a list of options we’ve seen so you can have a fresh brewed cup of coffee on your travels.

What is the Best RV Coffee Maker (for You)?

Best RV Coffee Makers Mentioned in This Article

Here are the coffee makers mentioned below that we recommend while traveling in your RV:

Mr. Coffee 12-cup Coffee Maker

  • Simple easy to use drip coffee machine with on/off indicator light
  • Lift out filter basket makes cleaning easy
  • Auto-Pause Grab-a-Cup Feature temporarily stops brewing so you can pour your first cup without making a mess
  • 11.76″ D x 12.3″ W x 13.8″ H
  • 3.6 pounds
  • 900 watts

Check prices here

Lavazza Expert Coffee Single Serve Espresso & Coffee Brewer

  • The Lavazza Expert is a great little machine for an RVer because of its compact size and multiple brewing options. Note, however, that it is a single serve brewing machine so may not be a good fit for couples or family RV living.
  • Built in milk frother
  • 7.87″ D x 18.9″ W x 13.78″ H
  • 9.9 lbs
  • 1,250 watts

Check prices here

Secura Stainless Steel French Press

  • A 3-layered stainless steel filter traps coffee grounds to deliver a refined, full-bodied flavor
  • Multiple screen system can be disassembled for thorough cleaning (note that this, of course, is more time consuming than cleaning a traditional drip coffee filter or the coffee cone)
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Multiple sizes available, from 12oz to 50oz
  • 6.1″ D x 6.7″ W x 9.8″ H

Check prices here

Yitelle Stainless Steel Coffee Cone

  • Unlike paper filters, the micro mesh funnel strainer ensures the best tasting coffee. It properly filters grinded coffee beans to allow nutrients and flavored oils to pass through to your coffee mug.
  • The base of this stainless steel coffee cone fits on top of most mugs and thermoses, which makes it a perfect pour over drip coffee method.
  • This cone dripper is great for RVing because it can be easily stored in a drawer rather than take up valuable counter space
  • On a personal note, I use the coffee cone at home, too. I like the simplicity of adding ground coffee and pouring hot water over the top. Done. Plus, it’s easy to clean.

Check prices here

Wacaco Nanopresso Portable Espresso Maker

  • This portable espresso maker is a great product to pack along while RVing, camping, or traveling, because it does not need batteries or electricity. However, you do need boiling water.
  • A manual pumping action creates the pressure needed to brew espresso
  • Compact and lightweight with filters that can be separated for thorough cleaning
  • Makes up to 50 ml of espresso
  • 2.8″ D x 2.44″ W x 6.14″ H
  • 0.75 pounds

Check prices here

How to Decide Which Coffee Maker is Best for Your RV Travels

Let’s break down these options for different types of RV coffee makers for RV travel.

If you like waking up to the smell of coffee…

For 17 months, the smell of coffee was our alarm clock. I did not get out of bed until I:

a) heard the beeping from our coffee maker letting me know it was done brewing and

b) smelled the aromas that delicious dark liquid gives off.

So for us, a regular good ‘ol basic coffee maker with a programmable timer worked perfectly.

There are a ton of programmable coffee maker options, but we decided to go with a very simple one we could find. It did the trick and we happily woke up to a freshly brewed cup every morning.

If you go this route, don’t forget the coffee filters, or to reduce waste purchase a permanent filter (be sure to buy the correct cup size filter based on your choice of coffee maker).

If you are regularly camping off the grid and electricity is not available, then drip coffee makers wouldn’t make much sense. Keep reading for some options that are perfect for off the grid RVing.

If you like Espresso…

When we were RVing with friends, one of their kiddos made me an espresso. Not only was I super impressed that their kiddo offered to make me one, but man was it good!

We were sitting in beautiful Nova Scotia, Canada with good friends, sipping an espresso. Life was good and the amazing trip made our list of favorite RVing spots!

But then I wanted an espresso machine. 🙂

Finding a compact espresso maker for an RV kitchen can be tricky, but I found one!

The Nespresso Essenza Mini Espresso Machine by Breville is not only compact, but also makes one heck of a good espresso!

This is a great choice for RV owners who want espresso, but don’t have minimal counter space in their RV.

The Nespresso Essenza heats up quickly and has an automatic shut off function. It delivers has an incredible, fresh ground and packed taste. This particular model is compatible with Nespresso Original capsules, which are available in a seemingly endless variety of roasts and flavors.

If you’re a purist…

I don’t know if purist is the right word to use, but when I make myself a cup of pour-over coffee I just feel like I’m making a cup of coffee as they did back then. Back when? I’m not really sure.

I bought this handy little pour over gadget to use when we didn’t have hookups for the RV, which meant no electricity to run the coffee maker.

I would just heat up water on the stove or over the campfire and voila!, a cup of coffee. This was the best way to make coffee in an RV when you have no electricity. And when it comes to ease of use, you can’t be this option.

Also, it was small enough to store in the cabinet when not in use. So if not much space is a big issue for you, this might the best coffee maker option for you.

If you want to step it up a notch when it comes to pour over, you could always get a Chemex Pour-Over. I’ve heard so many great things about that little coffee maker. But, it didn’t make our top list because it’s glass and oftentimes RVs and glass items do not go so well together.

If you want to sip coffee in your flannel shirt by the campfire…

Every time we use our french press, I have a strong desire to change into a flannel shirt, light up a campfire and ask my husband to grow a beard. My kids call flannels and beards and french presses hipster. I just call them cool.

We’ve been using a french press for years and it really does make a good cup of coffee.

You just have to be patient and wait for it to do its thing. To me, French press coffee is a very satisfying brewing process.

With most of the camper vans we’ve rented, I’ve noticed a french press is one of the top picks for making coffee.

If you’re not familiar with a french press, the cliff notes version of how it works is you scoop your grounds in, pour hot water over the grounds, wait for 3 to 5 minutes, and then (slowly) push down the plunger thingy (not the right term). That pushes the grounds to the bottom of the container and allows you to pour a delicious, full-bodied and refined cup of hot coffee.

The options are endless. You can choose from stainless steel or glass. Here’s a heavy duty stainless steel version that keeps coffee hot for up to 60 minutes!

I don’t purchase the glass for RVing or camping because I’ve learned my lesson that the glass versions may be sturdy enough to handle hot boiling water, but they’re still too fragile for my aggressive cleaning habits. So, my guess is it wouldn’t last long during my RV travels.

If you do a lot of early morning hiking…

My boys and husband love to get up very early and go hiking. I enjoy it once I’m on the trail but getting from my warm bed to that trail in the early morning hours takes, well, coffee.

We’ve never personally used the Wacaco Nanopresso, but I’ve seen rave reviews in various hiking and camping groups.

Just like how coffee tastes better when you’re camping…it also tastes better on the trail.

This is also a really good option if you are tight on space and camp off the grid without access to electricity.

The Nanopresso wouldn’t work well for our coffee-loving family of five, but I think it’d be perfect for a solo traveler or a couple on the go.

These five options are the perfect RV coffee maker choice for small spaces and frequent travel.

Now that we are no longer full-time RVing, we have counter space for both the programmable coffee maker (because I still like to wake up to the lovely aroma of coffee) and the espresso machine for a mid-afternoon cup.

What’s your favorite way to fix your cup o’ joe?


Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *