Coffee, a blessing sent from the gods themselves. It is the lifeblood of America and what would you do without it? I know the world would lose its mind if there was a coffee blight and no beans grew this year. In my house, there’s a pot on all hours of the day or night for the four javaholics we have here. I can count off the top of my head at least three spare coffee makers stashed around the kitchen in case of Armageddon. That’s just what it would be around here if there were no coffee. The end of the world; the apocalypse. We wear out 2 coffee makers a year on average, but for fear of coffee-less-ness not once have we ever waited until the coffee pot totally died before getting a new one. Thus, all the spares. You never know when all hell will break loose, a coffee emergency will arise and you’ll be looking for the best percolator in this emergency.
AT A GLANCE
Why Should You Trust Us?
There’s a simple answer to that. It’s coffee, and coffee is life. I would see it as sacrilege to promote a machine of any type with the purpose of making coffee, that doesn’t make good coffee. Bad coffee is a crime punishable by death, or at least not rewarded with a mention by me, unless it’s a warning. Reviews can be useful too, but remember everyone has different tastes in their coffee preferences.
In my years spent singing the coffee gospel and sharing the coffee gossip, my cohorts and I have vetted about 20 different percolators, and we’ve made certain to test as many as possible. After 50 or 60 hours surfing the web, cup of Joe in hand of course, and a good week stalking every machine for their user reviews, I bring you the resulting list of the best percolators for the coffee fiend in your life to get all the benefits of drinking coffee.
What is a Percolator?
The common household coffee maker is known as a drip coffee maker. That’s only one tool we have at our disposal for extracting this heavenly liquid from those little beans. Another way to make your coffee is with a percolator. You may have heard of this method from more discerning coffee drinkers around you, or maybe you know some campers. A campfire coffee pot is usually a percolator.
Camping? Oh don’t you worry one little bit about that. See, a coffee percolator is a very simple but effective method of brewing coffee that just happens to work just as well on a campfire as on a stove or plugged into the wall.
The way a percolator works is simple. A vertical tube inside the coffee pot allows the boiling water to travel upwards to where the coffee grounds are and pass through them before dripping back to the pot to start the process all over. Because of this cyclical journey, the liquid in a percolator is passing through the grounds over and over, extracting as much flavor and rich aroma as possible.
This is akin to trying to rinse shampoo out of your hair in the shower versus dipping in a bucket of water for a few minutes and keeping still. You get shampoo out both ways, but a lot will stay behind using the bucket, while the constant passing of water in the shower will get it all, and do it faster.
Types of Percolators
There are two types of coffee percolators: the gravity type and the pressure type. Each of these types denotes a different way in which hot boiling water passes through your coffee grounds. Both of these percolator types make different types of coffee and have their own advantages.
Gravity Percolator: It is the traditional coffee percolator described above. After moving up the tube, the boiling water trickles out over the lid of the filter basket, which is full of holes. This allows the water to enter the chamber of grounds evenly instead of all in the same place. As more water enters the basket of grounds, other water finishes its trickle through to the bottom of the chamber where there are again small holes to let it back out but keep the grounds in.
Some attention must be paid while brewing with a gravity percolator to be sure it doesn’t over-brew or the result is an unpleasant flavor. If you don’t over-brew it though, the taste and smell of percolated coffee is amazing. Before pouring, you mustn’t forget to remove the filter basket from the pot so loose grounds can’t also pour out into your cup.
Pressure Percolator: It is really a misnomer. The term “percolate” actually refers to the process of water trickling through the grounds, which is not true of pressure percolators. The true name for this type of coffee pot is a Moka, but except in some areas of Europe where their popularity overtook that of percolators nearly 100 years ago, very few are familiar with this term and simply lump it in with percolators.
Because of this, I’m sure some of you are here perusing in hopes of finding a quality Moka, just using different terminology. The inner workings of the Moka do resemble a gravity percolator, but the brewing action is different. In this case the beginning is the same. Water on bottom; vertical tube headed up to the top; grounds in between.
However, the chamber with the grounds is a widened area of the central tube, with a filter holding grounds in place, where the pressure forces the water to move through that filter and the grounds before completing its path up to the tube where it comes out the top and fills a receptacle to hold the brewed coffee away from the heat source. This is where the coffee remains until poured into your cup.
Why Should You Buy a Percolator?
A percolator isn’t for everyone that drinks or brews coffee. A restaurant for example typically uses a drip coffee maker so that new pots can be set up and brewed with the least effort using pre-prepared filter/ground combinations. However, the best percolator is very simple to set up and can be used with any source of heat, and with some pots simply a power outlet.
The place where percolators become less efficient with time and thus not as good for food service, is the removal of used grounds and replacement with new. Back in the 1970s, the process could be much faster as various companies produced and sold sealed filter/ground rings specifically for percolators. These set-ups were in the shape of a doughnut to allow for going around the tube.
Today, however, these products are no longer available and the user must manually clean out the filter basket and refill between brewing. Because there are also no filters available that will fit a percolator basket, there is no quick and easy way to do this. Grounds must be dumped and the filter basket fully rinsed of used ones. This is not a concern for most users as speed of preparing a second pot isn’t important.
What is important to most coffee connoisseurs is the taste of the finished coffee. Percolated coffee’s flavor is significantly different than that of drip-brewed. Some drinkers may prefer the drip-type, or have had a bad experience with loose grounds in their cup (we get that with our drip machine now and then as well) but most agree the flavor of a properly percolated coffee is superior.
And the smell. Oh, it is glorious. If you enjoy the scent of coffee brewing in the morning, wait ’til you get a load of this. The percolating process allows for much more aroma, and that aroma is of that superior flavor, to permeate the air around the pot. For those that simply love to smell coffee during their morning wake-up, they should look for the best percolator as it is a fantastic choice.
One last reason you should find the best percolator for you is space. A percolator doesn’t take up anywhere near the footprint of a drip coffee maker. It doesn’t need to use a wall outlet (unless you opt for an electric version) or even a stove-top. Any heat source can be utilized to use a traditional coffee percolator.
This flexibility makes it ideal for barbecues where you simply don’t want to run in and out of the house for coffee, simply use whatever you’re cooking with outside. Campers have always found percolators to be a fantastic addition to their pack as any sort of campfire can be used, and the pots made for open flame are very inexpensive. The new tiny home movement and those in efficiencies will also appreciate its space-saving features.
What Should You Consider to Get the Best Percolator?
There are several different aspects to percolator coffee pots to take into consideration. Do you want a counter-top electric version without any need for a heat-source, or are you planning to use on a stove, grill, or campfire? This is a one or the other feature so you must decide why you’re looking at percolators to start with.
An electric percolator can not be used anywhere but on a flat sturdy surface with a power outlet. Conversely, a stove-top or camp-fire percolator MUST have a heat-source of some sort but has no electrical parts.
Is price a factor in your decision on the best percolator for you? The cost of a percolator is generally lower than that of a drip coffee maker due to more simple construction, but this isn’t always the case. Coffee percolator pots can vary significantly in price based on size, material, and heat-source as well. A stainless steel pot and an enameled pot have different pricing. Consider reviews along with the price.
Perhaps the most important thing to consider when choosing a coffee pot is capacity. A single user that only drinks a cup or two in the mornings isn’t going to need a 12 or 14 cup model, and a household like mine with constant large-volume consumption couldn’t possibly get by with a 4-cup model. This is the usual size range for percolators, but there are some around that can hold much more, usually electric.
How We Picked and Tested:
Our method of selection includes data extracted from a selection of volunteers using each product. In our years reviewing and updating we’ve evaluated about twenty models of coffee percolators, having test the majority ourselves. Although no product is perfect for everyone, the following are the closest we’ve found.
The testing volunteers spent nearly 2 months with these coffee pots evaluating their performance. This was then analyzed to look at the aspects of versatility, capacity, material, usability, maintenance needs, cost, and overall size, as well as various other key factors. From comparing this data we have selected the following list we’re confident are the best on the market.
Our List and Reviews of the 10 Best Percolators Available
After comparing the 35 important factors we consider key for each model of percolator tested, we put all the data in a full research chart. All of our findings are available to our readers to peruse in the quest to get a new coffee maker. We do ask that you Like any of the social media pages linked here before viewing the report and it will be unlocked for you.
Presto 02811 12-Cup Stainless Steel Coffee MakerGet It On amazon
Great Tasting Coffee Every Time
This percolator is a large-volume coffee maker that can brew 12 cups in one sitting. It is made almost exclusively of stainless steel, except for the base and the handle, and is very easy to clean.
Why is it Our Pick?
Before we jump in to my review of this model, allow me to explain why it was chosen as the best percolator. After evaluating those thirty-five important features for the whole list, this product was proven to possess the most positive aspects of all of the contenders. This combination of features displays the epitome of coffee percolators by which they all must be measured. You can view all the specifics in our data table.
- This is a nice large-volume coffee maker consisting almost exclusively of stainless steel. This construction includes the filter basket and percolating tube. The luxurious steel material is an elegant addition to your kitchen and also makes your new pot quick and simple to clean.
- Though this model is by itself dazzling to look at and a wonder to clean, it also has other great features like its hefty 12-cup carafe that takes a lightning-fast 60 seconds per cup to brew and a ready-light to signal when it’s time to pour.
- Despite all this greatness you can purchase this beauty for under 60 bucks.
- We evaluated the sales rate of this machine by measuring its speed of acquiring customer feedback. What we found is that it is a very popular seller with its first ten reviews coming in in the first week, and taking only 18 days for the next twenty. Being that coffee makers aren’t consumables and drop machines are much more popular, that’s saying a lot for this percolator.
Hallelujah! A coffee maker that doesn’t use plastic in the process of the perc. Finally. Even though many look similar on the outside, all the other “stainless steel” percolators out there have some plastic somewhere in the works. Methinks that may be why this one makes such a pleasurable cup of Joe. I’ve never had a drip-brewer or electric percolator make java this good no matter what type of beans I used.
This baby brews a mean pot of coffee. A mean HOT pot of coffee, and I mean, coffee’s supposed to be hot and steamy so that’s really a good thing. It’s a fantastic thing first thing in the morning. But….later in the evening when the whole crew is around competing for King of the Coffee Consumers…that heat makes it extremely difficult to brew subsequent pots. Hot, hot, hot filter basket: you have been warned.
Unlike some other machines, this puppy also delivers a small batch of coffee as heavenly as a full pot. For some reason many brewers just don’t come out right with a partial pot. This champ doesn’t seem to mind whether I make 1 or 12 cups, it puts the others to shame every time.
It’s not complicated to make coffee no matter what type of machine you use, granted, but uncomplicated does not necessarily equate to stress-free. I don’t enjoy having to mess around filling a pot with water, pouring that in the reservoir, sticking a filter in the basket, measuring grounds out, getting the basket lined up with some silly slot in a dark wet compartment, then remembering which 2, 3, or 4 buttons to hit to start the coffee brewing.
No, No one enjoys all those extra steps, do they? Really? And no one likes cleaning up the dribbles from pouring the water in the reservoir, trying to separate 1 paper filter from another, making sure coffee grounds don’t somehow work their way around underneath said filter, cleaning up the disaster that happens when you don’t get the basket lined up right, or hitting more than “ON” to start the brew.
In walks this little miracle right here. Really any percolator cuts much of that out, but an electric one also CAN keep you from an open flame while half-asleep, staring at the pot wondering if it’s done yet and only sometimes getting the duration just right.
Water in, tube in, grounds in, basket in, and plug in: that’s all there is to it. Walk away for a glimpse of the news and when the light’s on you’re ready to pour.
- All steel parts in the process. Only plastic is the base and handle which don’t ever touch your coffee.
- Full 12 cups ready in about 12 minutes
- Extremely easy to use and to clean.
- AMAZING flavor to the coffee.
- can’t pour a cup while brewing, but that’s really not doable with any percolator
- can’t program it to make your coffee while you’re still fumbling for your slippers, but flavor prefers the water and grounds don’t sit together overnight under a lid anyway.
Farberware Classic Yosemite 8-cup Stainless Steel Coffee PercolatorGet It on amazon
Great Features at a Low Price
This stove top percolator is great for indoor or outdoor coffee making and makes 8 cups of coffee at a time. It’s easy to clean and dishwasher safe, too. Best of all, it’s priced under $30.
Why is it Our Budget Pick?
This little gem has the 2nd most features and the 2nd lowest price on our list, making the Yosemite 8-cup our ideal Budget Pick. This penny-pincher is a good size, brewing up to 8 cups at a time, made from stainless steel and is both submersible and dishwasher-safe.
Though it is a plastic one, it does have a clear viewing knob to watch the action. Most amazing of all, this machine got all thirty customer reviews we’ve been monitoring, in only 1 week.
While this pot is a little too shiny to drag out to the campfire, it does make a phenomenal emergency coffee maker. You know, the kind of emergency where you forgot to pay the power bill for a couple months. All kidding aside, this classic has all the right features to make those on a budget quite happy, but they also have to know how to find cheap coffee makers. A new pair of generic jeans usually costs more.
Now, not everyone lives in a house like mine where coffee is guzzled by the gallon on a daily basis, so the half gallon this one holds is pretty awesome. Some of us have this little obsession with watching the little bubbles in the knob while the coffee brews, and this lets you do that too, although the knob is plastic not glass.
And yes, you could use it if you forgot to pay the electric bill. Or, maybe Mother Nature forgot to pay her heating bill and a snow-storm knocked out your power instead. Either way, as long as you have a gas stove or a fireplace, or maybe a little patio grill, you’ll always have coffee. If all else fails you can always campfire it. It is coffee after all.
Guess what else: it makes the coffee awesomely. I don’t recommend the really fine grinds as much, but this pot’ll turn the cheapest bargain coffee grounds to a delicacy so you can save up to pay your bill! Gotcha. I’ll stop now. Maybe that’s my own bias talking. Percolated coffee just wins hands down for me, every time.
- highest average consumer reviews of all
- Under $30
- Easy to clean in sink or dishwasher
- not intrusive, but not tiny, making it just right.
- Viewing knob is plastic
- no Ready-Light
14 Cup Percolator by ColemanGet It On Amazon
Great Volume for More Coffee
This enamel coated steel Coleman percolator boasts of a capacity of 14 cups, which makes it perfect for large groups. Plus it’s very versatile and can be used with any heat source.
Why is it Our Large Capacity Pick?
Bolstering a whopping 14-cup capacity along with a broad, stable base and a clear glass viewing knob, this model reels in our Large Capacity Pick. With durable construction like an enamel-coated steel carafe and stainless steel chip-resistant rim, this is the best percolator for camping too, especially with a big group.
A little slower on the uptake, this model took an average of 4 weeks for every ten reviewss received.
I’ve owned one of these beasts most of my life. Same one going on thirty years, as far as I can remember owning it that is. We still pull it out about half a dozen or so times a year. There are no moving parts; there’s nothing to break down – except perhaps actually breaking it. Enameled steel isn’t all that easy to break though, kind of why it’s so great for camping.
And the big neighborhood cookouts. You know the ones where ten kids running around you have no idea who they belong to, about 20 other people debating whether or not to have another burger…and some coffee. That size crowd wanting coffee is enough to make you cry if the pot plugs in in the kitchen. You’d never leave, and neither would they. It’s a godsend for the big and rowdy crowd.
And power outages. It’s not one of those fancy electric models, which means it actually works when the power company doesn’t. Can’t even count how many times this little bugger’s sat brewing coffee on a match-lit stove-top with thunder shaking the windows, or the sound of a snow blower trying to dig our way of a storm. Coleman just doesn’t care what the weather man says; coffee’s on!
The only time the power goes out and this baby doesn’t get put to use, is when the last time it brewed coffee was on a campfire, and someone forgot to bring it in. No one ever forgets to make the coffee, but somehow everyone forgets to clean up after. That’s okay though, I can’t even remember how many times that’s happened, all winter long, yet this 30 year old pot STILL makes a might fine brew.
- Huge 14 cup capacity
- Extremely durable
- Can be used on any heat-source
- Under $40
- Requires a heat-source like stove or flame
Farberware Stainless Steel Percolator FCP240, 2-4 CupsGet It On Amazon
Great Coffee in a Small Package
The Farberware Percolator is great for the occasional coffee drinker. It has a plastic exterior but is completely made of stainless steel on the inside. It brews 2 big cups of coffee in just three minutes.
Why is it Our Small Capacity pick?
For the occasional coffee-drinker, our Small Capacity Pick does a great job in a nice small package. Brew 2 to 4 cups at a time, or even remove the innards and use it to boil water for tea or soup.
Although plastic outside, it’s fully lined with stainless, is very compact, moderate cost, and can brew a pot in three minutes. First 30 consumer feed-backs tallied in just over 2 weeks total.
This really isn’t the ideal coffee pot for myself, but I did get one for my daughter’s dorm-room and of course I had to test it out first. What makes it not for me of course is the size. That size is exactly what makes it perfect for the daughter though. I sometimes wonder if they were to measure a blood coffee content like they do alcohol, what the legal limit would be and how early in the day I’d go over.
My little college girl now, she only drinks a cup or two a week. I swear, she’s the mailman’s kid. But she does enjoy her teas, and her ramen noodles, both of which she can make without leaving her room at all. All she needs is an outlet and some water, and I hope a cup or a bowl… I tried that whole tea thing, it just wasn’t coffee-flavored enough for my needs.
I did make myself a few cups of coffee in this to check the flavor and function. If I filled it to brewing capacity I got just about enough to fill my big coffee cup twice, and leave the last swallow with the little grounds still in the pot. I’ve got to say I was impressed. I can’t say I could even hint at a difference from my usual percolators, I mean I could say it but it would be a lie.
And fast. This thing’s like a racehorse. Which reminds me what I was doing while brewing the first test-pot in it. I don’t think I was back from the bathroom and ready to pour before IT was ready to pour. That’s how fast this little coffee pot it.
Fast is good. I mean, to someone like me, a coffee pot being empty is an emergency, and waiting 2 or 3 minutes is a whole lot better than waiting 10 or 15 like with others.
Now I’m thinking of buying one of these babies for myself. I’d have to empty and refill it rather frequently, but for that first morning cup? Plug it in, go to the bathroom, and come back to coffee. How can I turn that down? I laughed at the size of this thing when I bought it for my kid, but who’s laughing now?
- Fastest coffee brewer I’ve ever seen
- Makes a fantastic gift for students and retirees in limited spaces
- Completely Stainless Steel internally
- Small footprint
- very small capacity
- too much plastic
A List of 6 Other Percolator Coffee Pots We Reviewed
Presto Stainless Steel 6-cup Coffee Percolator 02822Get It On Amazon
Well Built Percolator
The Presto Stainless Steel Percolator makes 6 cups of great-tasting coffee in just 5 minutes, making it one of the fastest in the market. It’s not entirely made of stainless steel, but it keeps coffee hot for a long time.
I’ve got to say, by far the best thing about this percolator is how exceedingly fast the brew time is. Granted, it’s only 6 cups, but at less than a minute a cup, how can you go wrong?
The flavor of the coffee is good, but not AS good as some others. I think this may be due to the aluminum receptacle for the tube. It’s the only part on the inside not made of stainless, at it’s prone to discoloration.
The 6-cup size on this model is about perfect for a regular, single coffee drinker. Or, 2 light coffee drinkers. A true connoisseur would be left wanting for more. More coffee and a little more flavor. Or should I say less flavor? I’m not real sure there. It’s better than drip coffee for sure, but not the best percolated flavor around.
I do have to say, this is a very well built coffee maker that can reduce the cost of making coffee at home. For its capacity it is very heavy. Heavy is good when you’re talking about an electric percolator. It means the steel is thick and solid and it’s very well insulated. Poor insulation makes for slower brewing and quick heat-loss on your finished product. Definitely not going to be a problem on this one.
The coffee in this percolator can be far hotter than you’ll ever get in a drip machine, which means your coffee won’t get cold very fast…and you won’t be drinking it very fast either.
- 5 minutes to a full pot
- low price bracket
- stainless steel
- no viewing knob
- not 100% stainless on the inside
Hamilton Beach 12-cup Electric Stainless Steel Percolator 40616Get It On Amazon
Amazing Large Capacity Percolator
Next to the Coleman Percolator, the Hamilton Beach makes a large batch of coffee at 12 cups per pot. Plus, it’s made of heavy duty stainless steel which makes it extremely sturdy and long lasting.
At a little over thirty bucks, this large-capacity percolator is right up my alley. My coffee comes out delicious and hot as I could possibly want. The unit is very solidly constructed by the feel, but it doesn’t weigh a ton. Solid stainless steel is always my choice no matter how I make my coffee.
Cleaning is a breeze, though I prefer to season my coffee pots…and cups, with no residual “gunk” or discoloration to worry those that don’t relish the idea of “seasoning”. Hey, with cast iron pans they all used to swear by them and getting them really well-seasoned, but nowadays you just get Teflon and wash it each time.
To each his own. I have my father’s favorite coffee cup on a shelf, that got used daily, but not washed in twenty years, from whenever in the 80’s I gave it to him to the day he died. I wouldn’t recommend that if you use creamer or sugar but he took it plain black. It’s black. Just black, no crust, no chunks, just a black powdery cup. I bet if I put some hot water in there, it’d make coffee.
The detachable cord makes this so much easier to stick up in the cupboard when not using it. I keep all my appliance cords in a drawer. There’s nothing worse than trying to pull something out of the cupboard and a coffee maker falling on your head. Okay, so maybe pulling the coffee pot out of the cupboard and a dead mouse falling on your head, but let’s not think about that. No cupboard cords. Good times.
- No plastic parts.
- Heavy-duty stainless steel
- Detachable cord
- Power cord is a little short, and 3-prong plug can limit where you can use it
Hamilton Beach Coffee Percolator 40614, Stainless Steel 12-cupGet It On Amazon
Best Unique Features in a Percolator
This electric percolator from Hamilton Beach has some unique features such as a locking lid that prevents accidental spills or burns, a no-drip spout, viewing window, gentle keep warm heater, ready to serve light indicator, and many more.
Let me start off this review by saying one thing – Wow. Could this coffee maker have any more features? A locking lid so it can’t ever get dislodged with vapor pressure or a full pot of hot coffee being poured too fast, or whatever other ways these things happen, because let me tell you, you do NOT want to get freshly percolated coffee dumped on you. Far hotter than any fast-food joint’s.
A viewing-window to check water/coffee level without opening the pot can be quite useful. Hell, it’s handy to remind myself if I ever actually brewed coffee or just dreamt about it. Nothing’s worse than thinking you have coffee, until you start to pour and all you get is a swallow. This happens a lot with a house full of coffee-addicts enjoying the health benefits of coffee.
This pot also has the usual features of course, at least usual for an electric percolator; stove-tops tend to be a lot more basic. The handle stays cool the entire time it’s brewing; the spout doesn’t dribble; the cord’s removable; it has an indicator-light to tell you when it’s ready, and there’s a keep-warm function. All these things tend to be taken for granted in one of these units, but you sure miss ’em when they’re gone.
- Viewing-window on carafe
- Locking lid to avoid spills and burns
- Well-priced at around $60
- 12 cups in 12 minutes brew-time
- needs an on/off switch
Medelco 8-cup Stove-top Glass PercolatorGet It On Amazon
Best Stove-top Glass Percolator
This 8-cup stovetop percolator is made of high quality thermal shock resistant borosilicate glass and a heat tolerant handle. It also comes with a trivet for use with electric range coils.
I’ve always admired the aesthetics of these glass percolators, but until recently I’d always been nervous about the entire glass thing. To me, glass and cast-iron burner-grates with half-asleep coffee-seekers can’t end well. However, the glass on this thing is the last thing I ever need to worry about. It’s just fantastically durable, to heat as well as the usual dings.
Just be careful: if you get any chips or cracks, replace it, or any glass percolator, immediately; heating the pot even one more time could cause dangerous shattering.
It’s not just about it looking pretty either, it’s about being able to see how light or dark your brew is too. Not everyone enjoys the same strength of coffee, so this is a very useful feature. Rich, intense coffee is some people’s idea of ideal. Others like to see through it. I’ll never understand that one, but whatever.
You do need to be careful with this model’s plastic filter-basket. Under recommended use it should be just fine, but stove-top percolators do have a tendency to be overheated, overfilled, overlooked and left on too long. You get the picture. When these things occur too often, over time the plastic can start to warp, compromising the pot’s integrity.
Luckily, this is probably the most inexpensive percolator I have ever seen, unless it was at a thrift store or something. Seriously, even with tax, if you set aside a dollar a day, in two weeks you could buy one. It is simply an amazing deal.
These are great percolators, you just have to take care of the plastic basket, but add in the unbelievability of the price and you’ve got a miracle. I’d buy three. In fact, I think I will.
- Clean and classy appearance
- Extremely low price
- Stay-cool handle even on the stove
- Plastic filter-basket
Stansport 9-cup Aluminum Coffee Percolator PotGet It On Amazon
Time-tested Classic Design
This vintage style percolator works great in the kitchen, or for outdoor camping trips, as it can be used over any fire source. It also comes in a larger version 20 cup which is perfect for big groups.
This percolator is very classically modeled. I believe the same design was available forty years ago even. This is a good, and maybe not-so-good thing. Anything that can be made for that many years, despite tons of advancements in the same type of product, must be doing something right. At the same time, tons of advancements have been made all around it, why hasn’t there been at least SOME here?
This coffee pot is very distinctly made with the purpose of camping in mind. That’s not to say that it can’t be used domestically, but it’s features, and absence-thereof, are aimed at just that: camping.
The metal dents easy. the handles are inconvenient…but so is sticking your hand in a campfire to retrieve it, and it’s extremely cheap. Things get lost and broken, or maybe eaten by a bear camping. Good things.
What I find most exhilarating about this percolator, is its other option! There’s a big, fat, giant, whopping, TWENTY-cup version of this. I think I’ve died and gone to heaven.
That, or maybe I’m having a nightmare because there are not household coffee pots of this size. I mean you see some huge ones for banquet halls, but again, not household.
And then there’s the pricing. There’s no way you can be disappointed in this kettle for the size. It brews a fine cup, or cups, of coffee, same as all the other stove-top and campfire percolators out there. This one just happens to dent easier so it’s not as pretty, and it costs far less.
I’ve always had a Coleman enameled percolator, which is fantastic, but you could buy TWO, of the 20-cup versions of this, for the cost of one of those. Win.
- comes in a 20-cup version as well
- under $15, under $20 for the 20-cup
- Time-tested decades-old design
- works great in the kitchen or at the campsite
- Thin construction; dents easily
- Handles are thin and get extremely hot
West Bend Classic Stainless Steel Electric 12-cup Percolator 54159Get It on Amazon
Typical Percolator for Great Tasting Coffee
The West Bend classic is your typical percolator that can brew from 2 to 12 cups of coffee at a time. Awesome features include a stay-cool handle and base, and an automatic keep-warm setting.
I wish I could sing the praises of this percolator more. I love that the base and handle stay cool so I can take it wherever I have company, and don’t need to bring a trivet or oven-mitt. The detachable cord also comes in handy for this, but it’s extremely short. The walls on my kitchen counters are lined with various canisters and organizers, making it difficult to plug this machine in where it’s away from stuff.
The fact this carafe automatically changes to the keep-warm setting is a life-saver to me, possibly even a kitchen-saver. You know how easy it is to get distracted doing something, looking something up online, watching something on TV you never intended to. It’s far too easy to forget to turn off, or pour on the auto-shutoffs, your coffee. This is insurance against those things.
A 12-cup coffee maker has been my standard for many years now, with larger pots causing me to frequently drool and fantasize about buying more, but I’m told, I can only use so many percolators. But why? Well, money is one reason, and this pot doesn’t really cater to the compulsive collector. It’s not a high price at all, but it’s also not one of the machines I will dream about for the next three days.
- Stay-cool base and handle
- water-level window
- detachable power cord
- Automatic change to keep-warm setting
- Plastic top-bubble prone to breakage
- Very short 15inch cord
- low-quality materials
A List of Other Products We Tested
- Coleman 12 Cup Stainless Steel Percolator>>>5 Positive Features as seen on our research report
- Cuisinart PRC-12 Classic 12-Cup Stainless-Steel Percolator>>>6 Positive Features as seen on our research report
- GSI Outdoors 8 Cup Enameled Steel Percolator Coffee Pot>>>4 Positive Features as seen on our research report
- Elite Platinum EC-120 Maxi-Matic 12 Cup Percolator>>>16 Positive Features as seen on our research report
Care, Maintenance, and Usage of your Best Percolator
Let me start this topic with some neighborly advice when using your new percolator: Always brew with COLD water to start with, and NEVER use a paper filter. These two tips are to preserve the main reason many people use a percolator in the first place: the flavor. Yes, you can use warm water and yes, you can use a filter if you’ve got one to fit it, but the flavor from these comes from doing it right.
You may wonder why I say don’t use a paper filter. Most pre-ground coffee is finely ground and will clog the holes in your basket, making it overflow and dump grounds into the coffee. However, Coarse-grind prevents this.
Once you have your coarse coffee-grounds, you want to make the most of them. Paper filters leech out the natural, flavorful oils from the beans that should be dripping right into your coffee.
When working with a glass percolator, the best method of brewing is to boil the water first, then add the filter-basket and coffee, and turn off the burner. Then you wait five or six minutes. Have to adjust the time according to taste, but you can see the richness through the glass so that’s easy to figure out. Filter-baskets in glass pots are usually less durable than steel pots, and boiling can be violent.
The reason to use cold water in your percolator is two-fold.
Primarily, warm or hot water, particularly tap water, has more particulates you don’t want in your coffee. Water quality has a big impact on your finished product.
The other reason to use cold water is for electric percolators. The way these work is to use a thermostat to determine ideal shut-off time. Warm or hot water will shorten processing and leave you with weaker coffee.
Now that you have some useful tips for using your percolator, be sure to keep it clean. Soap and abrasives are not necessary and may be detrimental to the lining and flavor. Instead, rinse the carafe out as soon as it is emptied using a water-temperature similar to the pot: Cold pot=cold water; hot pot=hot water.
If you won’t be using it again within a day, be sure to dry thoroughly before sealing with the lid. Closing up any container that is to be stored for a few days, or longer, must be done carefully to avoid any moisture being trapped that could turn to mildew. Mildew odor and taste is nearly impossible to get rid of.
Wrapping it Up
I do hope that Get a Coffee Maker has helped you in your search for a new, or perhaps your first, coffee percolator. Our aim is to ensure that everyone has the information needed to find the right coffee maker for their needs. Coffee can seem a necessity to many of us, and purchasing the ideal carafe is important. Please, study our data sheet as much as you need for any information important to you we left out, and Happy Hunting!