Are you looking to get a new coffee maker? If yes, then I’m sure you’ve done your research on good coffee machines and heard of the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker. And honestly? I couldn’t be more pleased with this coffee maker. The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker has truly redefined coffee making. As SharkNinja advertises, it allows you to “bring the coffeehouse home.”
At first look, this machine is both elegant and sophisticated. With its matte black and stainless steel build, the product is a classic addition to the aesthetic of your kitchen. The best part about this machine is the versatility it offers with several brewing options. Moreover, this coffee machine brews both hot and cold coffee, which is not something we often see. With practice and a few tips, you can make cafe-quality coffee brews at home.
Let’s take a quick look at what the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker offers in terms of design and functionality:
Key Features of Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker:
- SCA (Specialty Coffee Association) Certified
- A 50-ounce capacity glass carafe
- A removable and washable water reservoir
- Permanent gold brewing filter
- 1550 watt heating unit
- It weighs around 11.8 pounds
- One year warranty on parts and labor
- Intuitive control panel
- Durable and sturdy material
- Built-in smart scoop
- Foldable milk frother
- Six brewing sizes with three different styles
- No coffee pods required
- 20-recipe inspiration guide
- A little too big to hit into overhead cupboards and shelves
- It takes longer than usual to brew a single cup
- You have to heat the milk separately
What Makes the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker Special?
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker has created a buzz in the coffee brewing world. It has come forward with unique features and functions that are quickly making it a customer favorite.
Here’s a look into some of the coffee maker’s distinguishing features:
1. Removable Water Reservoir
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker comes with a removable water reservoir. You can easily lift off the tank for cleaning or refilling. There is also a fold-open top that helps in quick and simple refilling. The reservoir is on the right side of the coffee maker and can hold around 50 ounces of water.
2. Swivel Brew Basket With Drip-Stop
The brew basket in the coffee maker comes with a drip stopper. This basket easily swivels forward and allows you to fill it. This makes the process much more convenient (and fun) compared to other models.
3. Programmable Brew Timer
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker comes with an in-built brewing timer that adds to the machine’s impressive power. What I loved most about this feature is how simple the timer is, unlike most high-end coffee makers with this function. In the advanced coffee makers these days, setting a timer is complex, but here, you can simply select the brew size and style you want hours before you drink it. Then, you can go to sleep and wake up to the smell of freshly brewed coffee.
4. Adjustable Warming Plate
After you brew your coffee, it’s convenient to keep it warm for a while till you get to drink it. Fortunately, the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker has your back. The machine comes with a beautiful glossy plate that does a great job of keeping your coffee warm. In my experience, the coffee was warm for around 4 hours, but I guess the right temperature varies for everyone.
Nevertheless, as someone who forgets to drink coffee in the middle of work, this is one of my favorite features of this machine. It is also more convenient than having to buy a separate warming plate for this purpose.
5. Built-In Smart Scoop
A smart scoop on one side of the control panel enables you to measure coffee for various sizes. The measuring tool makes it relatively easy to know how much coffee you need to add for each size and type of brew, so you will not accidentally add too much or too little.
6. Foldable Milk Frother
It seems like the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker knows no limits when it comes to user-friendly features. The coffee machine has a foldable frother at the back of the control panel. This frother is easy to use, compact, and a complete gamechanger.
It even comes with a frothing arm that swings out from the other side of the machine. It is much more convenient and efficient than a handheld battery-operated frother. This built-in frother helped me make the creamiest drink I’ve ever had. I even did a Starbucks roleplay and added a slight drizzle of caramel to the top of the frothed milk.
7. Specialty Coffee Mode:
The Specialty Coffee Mode allows you to make concentrated brews for espresso, lattes, cappuccinos, and a ton of other beverages. To be honest, I had some concerns about how the Specialty coffee mode might taste, particularly because companies tend to advertise the hell out of fancy features, only for them to turn out useless.
Needless to say, I was pleasantly surprised by how good the Specialty Mode is on this coffee maker. I made a delicious cup of espresso and plenty of other recipes with the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker. The fact that I didn’t even need to deal with an espresso machine for this makes it an incredible deal.
8. Multiple Serve Options and Brewing Sizes
The Ninja Coffee Maker packs a significant punch in brewing capacity. It features a 50-ounce glass carafe with a brew-through lid that ensures a well-balanced taste throughout. The option to serve multiple sizes has been especially useful when working from home. I like being able to brew a whole pot for everyone in the house in the morning and making one small cup for myself later on in the day.
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker enables you to choose from a total of 6 brew sizes with a knob-shaped dial: Single Cup (9.5 oz), Large Single Cup (11.5 oz), Travel Mug (14 oz), Large Travel Mug (18 oz), Half Carafe (25 oz), and Full Carafe (50 oz). This gives you complete control of how much coffee you want to brew.
9. Versatile Brewing Styles
Not only does the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker have a variety of brewing sizes, but brewing styles as well. Its settings consist of 3 style options since the machine can brew both hot and cold coffee drinks.
Classic Brew: Provides smooth and balanced taste; Perfect for black coffee lovers.
Rich Brew: Intense flavor and color; For a stronger kick in your cup.
Over-Ice Brew: For the most fantastic ice coffee.
My favorite brewing style in the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is the Rich Brew. I compared this coffee with one I made using my old Keurig, and the Ninja definitely had more flavorful results!
Design and Build
Overall, the Ninja Specialty coffee maker has an attractive and elegant design. Nothing unusual, but the unit is ergonomic, which makes it comfortable to use. Some parts of the machine are of stainless steel, while the rest is plastic and glass.
Although the unit is still pretty well-constructed, it is more prone to damage or malfunctioning. Especially when it comes to most other commercial-style coffee machines, the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker may not last as long. The stylish design is definitely a compromise on durability.
When it comes to coffee makers, I prefer simplicity and ease of ease above everything. So, for the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker, all I have to say is:
Looks are deceiving. At first glance, the overwhelming interface of the coffee maker made me wary of the machine. I imagined it would be as complicated as other high-end coffee makers. However, once I used it for the first time, I found it relatively easy to deal with. A few settings on the coffee maker take some time to get used to, but the versatility that it brings is worth it.
This versatility is what makes this machine a top seller. The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is more than just a coffee maker. It effectively combines multiple functions with excellent efficiency and competence.
Clean and Refill
When it comes to cleaning the Ninja Coffee Maker, the process is similar to any other coffee maker. Most of the components of the coffee maker are removable and dishwasher safe. Besides rinsing the parts, you can simply use a soap solution to clean any build-up inside the machine. As part of its unique features, the Coffee Maker also has a “Cleaning Mode” and “Cleaning Needed” warning light which lets you know when the machine needs to be cleaned.
The Bad Part
Sadly, not all is good with the Ninja Specialty coffee maker. Like every other machine, I noticed a few hiccups here and there, although it’s overall a pretty good compromise.
First of all, the size of this machine is quite big. Unnecessarily large machines aren’t my cup of tea (coffee?). Being 15 inches tall and 12 inches wide makes it hard to do simple tasks like filling the water reservoir, etc. It also takes up a lot of space. However, if you have open space in your kitchen or more extensive cabinets, this shouldn’t be much of a problem.
Secondly, the frother doesn’t exactly work as I expected. Most espresso machines I’ve used so far simply use water from their reservoir to heat the milk. At first, I assumed the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker would do the same. But, unfortunately, you need to heat the milk in the microwave for frothing unless you want cold froth. This is an unexpected hiccup, to say the least since you do not expect this from a coffee maker of this caliber.
The machine is also not the fastest when it comes to brewing coffee. The single-cup size took me around 4 minutes to make, while the full carafe took 8 minutes. But, again, this depends on perspective and probably will not deter most consumers.
In the long scheme of things, these are relatively minor issues that probably won’t affect your daily use much.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. Can the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker Also Make Espresso?
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Made does make a drink that tastes like espresso. However, technically, it isn’t espresso since it is not brewed under high pressure.
2. What Is the Best Cleaning Solution for the Ninja Coffee Maker?
To clean the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker, you can use a mixture of white vinegar and water or any descaling solution designed to clean coffee machines.
3. Does the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker Create a Lot of Noise?
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is definitely not a silent machine. There is a considerably louder sound at the start of the brewing process, but that only lasts the first few seconds. After that, there is only a slight hum that is barely noticeable.
4. Does the Coffee Maker Have an Auto-Shutoff Feature?
Yes, it does. It is set at two hours by default, but you can program the warming plate to stay on for up to four hours.
5. Do You Need to Replace the Coffee Filter Often?
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker does not use removable filters. Instead, it has an in-built permanent gold filter, so you will not need to spend money on disposable filters.
When you add up the design, strength, and diverse combinations of this appliance, the Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is certainly a strong competitor in the coffee brewing world. It also looks cool on the counter, is easy to use, and makes yummy coffee!
While the machine also has a few problems, none of them are significant enough to be a deal-breaker. Ninja has undoubtedly created a highly desirable machine well worth your consideration. So, if the features listed above are all you need in your ideal coffee maker, you have your winner.