Are you looking to make the tastiest espresso drinks possible in your home or business? Then you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the best espresso tamper on the market. While all sorts of other factors affect the quality of these beverages, such as water hardness and the coffee bean’s roast date, the tamper is essential to brewing the perfect espresso for a latte or cappuccino.It might seem like any espresso tamper on the market would do the job, but the truth is that some are far better than others. Rather than leaving you to sift through hundreds of options, we’ve taken the time to find the 12 top espresso tampers and share exactly why they are so highly rated. We’ll also get into why an espresso tamper is essential and how to choose the right one for your needs.
The BlueSnail Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper is an excellent choice for tamping down fresh ground coffee beans before brewing tasty espresso. It features a stainless steel composition and a 51mm base to ensure the best results possible.
Another top choice is the RSVP International Dual Sized Coffee Espresso Tamper, which is made of cast alloy to prevent corrosion from coffee beans. It has a dual-sided design with a 51mm and 58mm tamper to use, depending on your specific needs.
Table of Contents
- Quick Comparison: 12 Top Espresso Tampers
- 1. BlueSnail Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper
- 2. RSVP International Dual Sized Coffee Espresso Tamper
- 3. HIC Dual Sided Espresso Tamper
- 4. Apexstone Coffee Tamper
- 5. LuxHaus Calibrated Pressure Tamper for Coffee and Espresso
- 6. Benicci Espresso Coffee Tamper
- 7. De’Longhi DLSC058 Coffee Tamper
- 8. Omgogo Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper
- 9. Youdepot Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper
- 10. Espro 3058F Calibrated Flat Tamper
- 11. FEENM Calibrated Coffee Tamper
- 12. Zoie + Chloe Stainless Steel Espresso Coffee Tamper
- Why a Tamper is Essential for Making Espresso Beverages
- Top Features to Be Aware of When Buying the Best Espresso Tamper
- Selecting the Right Size for Your Espresso Tamper
- Choosing an Espresso Tamper with an Ideal Weight
- Deciding the Appropriate Materials for Your New Espresso Tamper
- The Decision to Choose a Traditional or Calibrated Espresso Tamper
- Selecting Between a Convex or Flat Tamper for Making Espresso Beverages
- Taking a Look at Different Handles Used on Espresso Tampers
- Don’t Forget to Take Your Budget into Account with Your Espresso Tamper
Quick Comparison: 12 Top Espresso Tampers
This BlueSnail Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper features a stainless steel-clad body for those who aren’t interested in paying extra for a calibrated model. It features two different components, the head and handle, which screw into each other for easy cleanup after tamping tons of espresso. It weighs just over a pound, which many find is the perfect weight for getting the right pressure to create a great latte or macchiato.This is ideal for tamping any kind of fresh grounds to create a flavorful and aromatic cup of espresso in your home or business. However, it’s not a fully solid body, so those who are clumsy may find that it’s challenging to use. On the other hand, those who want an excellent espresso tamper for a great price are going to see this is a fantastic choice to add to the kitchen.
When you’re looking for an inexpensive tamper that will stand up to lots of use, you can’t do much better than the RSVP International Dual Sized Coffee Espresso Tamper. The two flat ends on either end of the tamper are 51mm and 58mm respectively, meaning it can be used with small and large espresso makers alike.Some may find that the weight of this tamper is a bit low at 4 ounces, but others won’t have a problem adding a bit more pressure to compensate for that. It’s also ridiculously small, with dimensions of 2.75 x 2.75 x 2.75, so when you aren’t using it, storage will never be an issue. While the good quality and reasonable price of this tamper makes it a great choice for anyone, it is especially suitable for beginners.
3. HIC Dual Sided Espresso Tamper
The HIC Dual Sided Espresso Tamper is another model that has two sizes, one on each end of the tool. In this case, one end is 50mm, and the other is 55mm, so it offers a different fit than the last dual-sided tamper we took a look at. It can easily be used to pack down coffee grounds into a puck to make delicious espresso beverages.This espresso tamper is an excellent choice for the Mr. Coffee espresso machine but is also the ideal size to work with several other standard machines on the market. Whether you’re making espresso shots, cappuccinos, or another espresso drink, it will ensure the taste is intense and even throughout. Also, it makes a gap between the grounds and the machine so they can’t swell up underwater and cause clogging.
4. Apexstone Coffee Tamper
This coffee tamper comes from Apexstone and features a robust design made of iron with a chrome plating. It works with any machine that requires a 51mm portafilter to tamp down grounds and make a puck to create the best espresso drinks you could imagine. It’s also excellent value for money and won’t break the bank, even for those with a stricter budget.One of the things that makes this such a great tamper is that it is anti-rust and corrosion-free, which means it isn’t going to run into issues if it comes into contact with water. It has a solid build and a design that most will love. This is ideal for any beginner who wants to start making espresso without spending too much.
5. LuxHaus Calibrated Pressure Tamper for Coffee and Espresso
This LuxHaus Calibrated Pressure Tamper for Coffee and Espresso is the first calibration tamper option on our list, which makes it an excellent choice for someone new to creating espresso. It makes a clicking sound when you press down at 30 pounds of pressure, so you know your espresso is ready to start brewing.The handle of this model is not made of metal, which means it has a comfortable grip that many people will prefer to standard metal handles. However, it’s essential to make sure the tamper will fit your espresso maker, as it only comes in 49mm and 51mm versions.
6. Benicci Espresso Coffee Tamper
This Benicci Espresso Coffee Tamper is 1.4 pounds, so it doesn’t take a great deal of pressure to tamp your fresh coffee grounds into a puck when you want a cappuccino or latte. It’s a solid tamper that isn’t going to break like super lightweight ones, but it can also pack a punch if it drops on a finger or toe, so be careful when using it. It’s designed for use by serious home espresso makers as well as for commercial purposes.If you’re looking for a non-calibrated tamper because you prefer a single piece tamper, this makes for a quality solution that will offer everything you need. It’s a bit more expensive than some models, but with everything it offers, it seems to be worth every penny of the price. However, we recommend this for experienced baristas more than beginners.
7. De’Longhi DLSC058 Coffee Tamper
This De’Longhi DLSC058 Coffee Tamper is another calibrated model that makes tamping down espresso to the perfect level a complete cinch. If you’re moving from a cast-metal tamper, you’ll find that this model feels much more robust in your hand, while also looking great on display thanks to the dual materials. While you might expect this tamper to cost a pretty penny, it comes at a reasonable price that’ll work with nearly any budget.The bottom of this tamper is flat to ensure the perfect consistency throughout your portafilter of coffee grounds. If you’re using a simple plastic model that came with your espresso machine, this will offer you much smoother operation and better taste in every beverage.
8. Omgogo Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper
The first thing that most people are going to notice about the Omgogo Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper is the beautiful rosewood handle. It connects to a stainless steel base that is food-grade and entirely safe for use with espresso or other consumable products.This is a high-quality choice that will work well for those who aren’t fans of cold, hard stainless steel handles. It tends to feel better in the hand and will ensure you make the best espresso your machine is capable of. The only real thing to watch for is the fact that without a unibody design, it could break apart when it’s dropped, so try to be cautious when using it.
9. Youdepot Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper
Those who have small espresso makers may enjoy this budget-friendly Youdepot Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper. It has a nice, hefty weight so you don’t have to apply much pressure to tamp down the coffee grounds you’re using to make espresso. It’s an ideal choice for anyone from a new home barista to a professional one in a shop.
The design of this tamper can also be used for other cooking tasks such as pressing down pie crust before adding the filling. However, this isn’t a unibody tamper, which some will find a disadvantage of an otherwise usable espresso tamper. Otherwise, it’s a very solid tamper and will likely make creating lattes easier and more straightforward than ever.
10. Espro 3058F Calibrated Flat Tamper
Regardless of what size your espresso machine is, it’s likely that the Espro 3058F Calibrated Flat Tamper will match up with it. This is a calibrated model, so it makes a small click when you hit 30 pounds of pressure but does so without disturbing the ground coffee and causing issues. Those who want the most consistent coffee grounds for lattes and cappuccinos will appreciate this extra assistance.This kitchen tool is lauded for being reliable and robust, with an easy to use design. It’s a bit more expensive than traditional tampers, but that’s understandable considering its superior features. It also comes in at a perfect one pound weight and is small enough so that you can fit it in a drawer when you aren’t using it.
11. FEENM Calibrated Coffee Tamper
Perfect for a professional coffee operation, this FEENM Calibrated Coffee Tamper is excellent for continuous use when you need all the espresso to have the same consistency. It’s a calibrated model, so it lets you know with a small click when you hit the sweet spot. It’s powerful enough to compact ground coffee into a thick layer for the best taste.This coffee tamper is made of #304 stainless steel that is resistant to corrosion and rusting, which means it’s sure to last. The handle is also comfortable and ergonomic, but it is made of plastic, so you’ll need to take extra care to avoid damaging it during use. All of the materials used in the construction are food safe for your peace of mind.
12. Zoie + Chloe Stainless Steel Espresso Coffee Tamper
This is an exciting espresso coffee tamper from Zoie + Chloe, which comes in a variety of bright colors, including red, blue, or rose gold. It’s great for a home kitchen but can also handle the rigors of a professional café that needs tons of espresso drinks made each day. It’s made of premium stainless steel with a bit of bulk without being so heavy that it’s unwieldy.Unfortunately, this espresso tamper only comes in a single size. You should also be aware that it has a screw-off handle, so it’s not a single-piece model, which some baristas prefer. Otherwise, if it fits your espresso maker, this could be the perfect addition to your kitchen tool stash.
Why a Tamper is Essential for Making Espresso Beverages
There are lots of things you’ll need to think about when choosing an espresso tamper, from the size to the materials used in construction, and even the shape of the tool you’ll use to press down on fresh ground coffee beans. However, before we get into any of that, you might be wondering why a coffee tamper is so essential and why it should be a part of your home, café, or restaurant.
One of the things that people love about espresso is how rich and full-flavored it can be compared to a traditional cup of drip coffee. However, to create the distinctive flavor, the coffee grounds used in an espresso machine have to be packed in tightly next to each other. Preventing pockets of air from reaching the beans is a must, which is precisely what a tamper is designed to do.
The same applies to using the tamper itself. If the grounds aren’t evenly tamped down to remove all of the air, the espresso shot you create isn’t going to have the taste that you are looking for. If you speed through the tamping process, it can create areas that are less pressed than others, which also leads to a shot that isn’t as tasty as it could be.
When the espresso machine rushes water through the grounds, it will look for areas that contain air, which means it isn’t going to coat the grounds the way it should in order to extract all the flavors from within them. When you use a tamper to make a “puck” of coffee and place that into the portafilter, you’ll enjoy better espresso beverages than ever before.
Top Features to Be Aware of When Buying the Best Espresso Tamper
Now that you understand why an espresso tamper is such an essential part of making espresso drinks, we can delve into the various features that make one tamper better than the next. We’ll take a look at everything from the size of tampers to what materials they are made from and how much they weigh so you can make the best buying decision for your specific needs.
Selecting the Right Size for Your Espresso Tamper
In most cases, you will see that espresso tampers are measured in millimeters. Tampers come in a range of sizes, but most of the ones you find on the market will range from about 48mm to 58mm. So, how do you know which tamper size will be the perfect one for your needs?
The best tamper to use is one that is the exact same size as the basket that you use for your espresso maker. Since this can vary to a considerable degree, it’s important to be sure the tamper you choose is compatible before you decide to buy it.
Sometimes this is as easy as looking for the manufacturer name on the tamper or its specifications. However, at other times, it might be more difficult. If you aren’t quite sure how large the basket is for your own espresso machine, now is the perfect time to dig out your manual and see what it says.
Those who have no manual or are having trouble finding it can often find this information online. Look up the model of your espresso machine and the word manual and see what pops up. Regardless of how you find out this information, it’s crucial to have, since the wrong size tamper is simply not going to work out.
Choosing an Espresso Tamper with an Ideal Weight
It’s hard to give a definitive answer on what weight is the best for your espresso machine, but one thing is sure: you need to provide around 30 pounds of pressure to the beans to tamp them down properly. Some people find that a one-pound tamper is ideal, while others will choose lighter and heavier options.
If you are looking for the most straightforward option, go for a higher weight tamper. This will require you to use less pressure to force the beans together into a puck to make caffeinated beverages. This is one of the reasons that experts will tell you to stay away from plastic tampers and stick with ones made of stainless steel, since it is a more substantial material.
Deciding the Appropriate Materials for Your New Espresso Tamper
As we just mentioned, stainless steel is often recommended for espresso tampers. This has to do with the fact that it is reasonably heavy, but it’s not the only reason. Any tamper that offers durable materials can fit the bill; it just happens to be true that stainless steel is the most commonly available and often comes at a reasonable price.
Also, stainless steel won’t react with your coffee beans to create an unsavory taste, and it’s known for being simple and easy to clean. While other materials can be used, make sure the tamper offers many of these things so it’s convenient for you to use on a regular basis.
The Decision to Choose a Traditional or Calibrated Espresso Tamper
There are pros and cons to choosing a solid tamper, just as there are to operating a calibrated tamper. A solid tamper is often the choice of baristas who have been in the business for years and have a tremendous amount of experience tamping espresso. On the other hand, a calibrated tamper ensures you tamp the coffee down precisely to get the best possible taste.
Essentially, calibrated varieties have a separate base and handle that connect and make a noise when you reach 30 pounds of pressure. This takes all of the guessing out of your tamping and ensures the best flavor for every drink you make. These work well for most people who are new to espresso-making, but they can also be a bit more expensive than other models.
Selecting Between a Convex or Flat Tamper for Making Espresso Beverages
Another distinction between tampers that you will notice is that some have a completely flat bottom while others have a bit of a curve along the edges. The latter is created this way to prevent water from entering the portafilter, which can lead to a shot that tastes worst than expected. However, both can offer a tasty shot; it’s just a matter of preference and which you find works the best for your needs.
Someone who is more experienced with espresso will find they can achieve the same results with a flat tamper as a convex one. Still, beginners may appreciate the additional simplicity that the rounded tamper has to offer. Think about your skill level and base your buying decision on that.
Taking a Look at Different Handles Used on Espresso Tampers
When you’re deciding between several tampers, you want to take a look at the handle to ensure it’s made from a durable material that is going to last. Some of these tampers are made of a single piece of stainless steel, while others may have plastic, wooden, or other materials used for the handles. You want to be sure it’s going to last and that you won’t need another tamper in a few months, especially if you make tons of espresso drinks every day.
Another thing to watch for is whether the handle is going to be comfortable. This can be challenging to do online, but often reviews will mention whether the handle has an excellent grip and is easy to use. If you have a tamper you are replacing and enjoy the way the handle works, use that as a guide for your next one.
Don’t Forget to Take Your Budget into Account with Your Espresso Tamper
While most of the tampers on the market are reasonably inexpensive and fall into the same price range, you will want to be sure your budget can handle the choice you make. This will help you decide if you can afford the quality you want with your tamper or whether you should wait to buy the one you have your heart set on.
It’s always a good idea to take your budget and match it with durability and quality over the aesthetics if one tamper is beyond your means and another is squarely affordable for you. When you know your budget from the beginning, you can also look only at tampers that fit the bill, so you don’t end up spending more than you expected.