The Krups XP1000 isn’t something you’ll see at your local coffee shop, but it might be the right machine for your home.
Table of Contents
- 1 The Coffee Maven Conclusion
- 2 What is a steam espresso machine?
- 3 The Coffee Maven Rating: 9.0 of 10
- 4 Performance: 9.3
- 5 Appearance: 9.1
- 6 Durability: 9.1
- 7 Quality of Espresso: 8.0
- 8 Ease of Cleaning: 9.2
- 9 Potential shortcomings
- 10 Technical specifications
The Coffee Maven Conclusion
Brewing a consistent espresso beverage requires precision, as you have to control the amount of water you add for each shot and adjust for whether you want to steam milk, but in the end that really gives you total control over the end result.
The Verdict: Get a rich espresso-like beverage, albeit without a good crema, for almost half the price of an entry-level pump espresso machine.
- Easy to operate and very compact 4-bar steam espresso machine
- 3 way switch knob and convenient steam nozzle to froth milk easily
- Removable drip tray for easy cleaning
- Safety valve in cap
- 4-cup glass carafe; measuring spoon included; 750 watts; 2-year worlwide warranty
What is a steam espresso machine?
Steam espresso machines are essentially electric versions of stovetop espresso machines, such as Bialetti Moka Pot. Because they don’t have pumps, pressure is generated by creating steam in a confined space.
Unfortunately, this pressure is below the 9 bars required for a true cup of espresso. The XP1000 below is able to generate 4 bars of pressure.
Pump espresso machines are able to generate those 9 bars of pressure to produce a true espresso with a rich crema.
The XP1000 is an inexpensive entry-level espresso machine and will produce a very espresso-like beverage. While it isn’t true espresso, and I’ll detail some shortcomings in the Quality of Espresso section below, it gets you almost all the way there for a fraction of the price.
The Coffee Maven Rating: 9.0 of 10
- Design & Performance: 9.3
- Appearance: 9.1
- Durability: 9.1
- Quality of Espresso: 8.0
- Ease of Cleaning: 9.2
Pros of the Krups XP1000
- Relatively inexpensive
- Compact design
- Built-in frother
Cons of the Krups XP1000
- Doesn’t come with tamper
- Lack of crema
- Takes 12+ minutes from start to finish
- 8 oz glass carafe
- 14 oz water reservoir capacity
- 4 bar pressure
- 3-way selector knob for espresso, steam, off
- On/off indicator light
- Removable drip tray for 9″ clearance
- Comes with measuring spoon
- 2-year warranty
The Krups XP1000 Espresso Machine is designed for simple, compact brewing. It heats up quickly, is incredibly quiet, has a capable built-in frother and won’t set you back half-a-grand.
OK so I suppose simple is a relative term. Without a doubt, the Krups XP1000 is more complex than a Nespresso machine that runs on capsules. You’ll need to measure out your coffee beans, grind and tamp them properly and add the right amount of water.
Related: Nespresso Pixie Review.
Oddly, though, the Krups XP1000 doesn’t come with a tamper. Krups says you can use the back of the included scoop to tamp your grounds, but it doesn’t work too well if you only have enough for one serving.
For all but the most seasoned home baristas, it’ll take some time to master this machine. The good news? There aren’t a ton of hard-to-use features. Really the only inputs are the volume of water, the type of grind, the volume of grounds and the degree of tamping.
And because this Krups espresso machine brews the volume of water you add to the tank and not some pre-set amount, you really do get total control over your beverage.
The trade-off is that you need to be precise to get the same brew over and over. This isn’t a pod coffee maker, like a Keurig or Nespresso machine. Make sure your grind size, volume of water and grounds and degree of tamping are consistent each time to ensure similar results.
It’ll also take time to complete your extraction process. While the machine heats up quickly, that’s only one part of the process:
- Add water and allow machine to heat
- Extract your espresso
- Froth your milk
- Relieving built-up pressure
All told from start to finish, you can expect to take 12+ minutes for a full 8 oz espresso.
Note: The instructions say to froth the milk before making your espresso, but that will leave your steamed milk sitting/cooling for longer than I’d recommend.
The 14 oz water reservoir feeds both the espresso maker and steaming wand, which means you’ll need to add 1-2 oz of water for steam in addition to the volume for your brew. For example, for a 6 oz espresso you should add about 8 oz of water.
Note that for best frothing performance, you should only use 1% or 2% milk.
Compact and attractive, I love the look of the Krups XP1000 espresso machine. Its matte design is easy on the eyes and easier to keep clean, and the rounded, well-built look gives it the appearance of a reliable espresso machine — which it is.
The plastic exterior is fairly scratch-resistant and durable enough to take a beating, and I had no issues with it over several weeks of use.
In my supplemental research about the worst complaint I came across was the on/off indicator light going out after 18 months.
Should something happen Krups offers a 2-year warranty on the XP1000, which is pretty good for a kitchen appliance these days.
Quality of Espresso: 8.0
As mentioned in the intro, the Krups XP1000 is a steam espresso machine. That likens it to a stovetop espresso pot, such as a Bialetti, meaning you won’t get true espresso because it can’t get to 9 bars of pressure.
However, the XP1000 gives you a rich, great tasting espresso-like beverage that rivals many of the four-figure machines on the market, but it struggles to get a good crema. Of course, if you’re brewing a cappuccino or latte, the lack of crema isn’t a big deal at all.
Tip: You can try to get a better crema by using a finer grind. It still won’t be great, but you may be able to achieve better results.
Experiment with different grinds, water/ground volumes and degrees of tamping to figure out which combination produces the best beverage for your tastes.
Ease of Cleaning: 9.2
Prior to first use, you’ll want to run 1 or 2 full water-only cycles to flush the internal components. Sometimes you get that plastic or rubbery smell for a couple of early extractions, but that’ll dissipate quickly.
The steam wand creates a ton of condensation, which collects on the machine. If anything, this gives you a good reason to wipe the unit down regularly. The wand can also get clogged fairly easily, but the cleaning process is pretty straightforward:
- Remove the plastic casing on the wand tip
- Unscrew the nozzle tip
- Remove any milk particles, possibly using a sewing needle or other similarly shaped object
- Put everything back together
It’s also advisable you never run a cleaning agent through a Krups espresso machine. Instead, you can and should descale with a mixture of equal parts vinegar and water.
Fill the water reservoir with 8-10 oz and run through with a full cycle. Then run 2 or 3 water-only cycles to rinse. Keep rinsing if the taste of vinegar is still present.
Water reservoir lid can be tough to remove
I love the look of the dome-shaped cap to the water reservoir but man, is that thing hard to remove. During the brew process the combination of high heat and pressure and the water being suctioned out of the water reservoir really seals the cap on good. The rounded shape makes it difficult to get a good grip.
Knob can be troublesome
I have two small complaints about the settings knob:
- It can be difficult to grasp and turn
- Turning it from Espresso to Froth requires passing over the Off position, which the instructions say not to stop on while the machine is hot and under pressure
- Dimensions: 9.8″W x 14.1″D x 12.0″H
- Weight: 4.4 lbs
- 750 watts
- User manual