Who doesn’t love a hot cup of good coffee? Coffee urns are stylish and professional-looking containers for coffee. They will allow you to always have a fresh cup ready, no matter how many people you need to serve. Coffee urns are made in different sizes, so there are models that can hold anywhere from 12 to 100 cups of coffee.
Because of this, they can be used almost anywhere – at home, while out and about, at events, meetings, and gatherings… you name it. Read on for an in-depth review of 5 best coffee urns in 2018.
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Now that you’ve seen our top 5 picks, we’re going to go into more detail on each of them. When you see the one that best fits your needs, click the yellow button to read more verified reviews and see the best price on Amazon!
1 – Cafe Amoroso 100 Cup Stainless Steel Coffee Urn
This large-capacity coffee urn from Cafe Amoroso is both functional and efficient. The walls are made of high-grade stainless steel which makes this coffee urn more durable and impact-resistant than polished aluminum alternatives. Furthermore, because of the double-wall design, the Cafe Amoroso Coffee Urn is very well insulated. The space between the two walls is filled with air which acts as an insulation layer. This keeps the outside cool so there is a lesser chance of accidents while the coffee inside remains hot for a long time.
The insulating walls minimize the amount of heat that is lost so this coffee urn also uses less power. The lid and the handle on the lid are also insulated so they never get hot and are safe to touch. The lid can also be locked to prevent spillage.
You can brew as much as 100 cups of coffee which equals to 16 liters or 4.2 gallons which is perfect for large gatherings. There is no need for disposable coffee filters because this coffee maker uses a built-in filter basket. There are two heating settings – Boiling Temperature (212 F) and Keep Warm Temperature (194 F). The Cafe Amoroso Coffee Urn also comes with a convenient drip tray included. The product is both ETL listed and CSA certified and it comes with a 1-year warranty.
Things we liked:
- The body is made entirely of stainless steel which makes it durable and impact-resistant
- Double-wall design provides great insulation so you can use this coffee urn to keep drinks both hot and cold
- Large capacity
- Drip tray included
2 – BUNN 32125.0000 2.5 Liter Lever-Action Airpot
BUNN has become a very popular brand in the recent years. They make a wide range of coffee makers, but they also make Airpots to keep your coffee hot for hours. Some Airpot models have glass insulation, but we chose the 2.5 Liter Lever-Action Airpot because it has a stainless steel liner. Stainless steel works just as well as glass for keeping the liquid hot, but it’s also virtually unbreakable.
Furthermore, the 2.5 Liter Lever-Action Airpot from BUNN comes with a brew-through lid compatible with several BUNN coffee makers. It will allow you to brew your coffee directly into the airpot for maximum convenience.
This BUNN airpot comes with a handle on top that makes it really easy to carry the pot around and the simple lever design makes it one of the most convenient portable beverage dispensers. Even though it has a 2.5l capacity, this Airpot is only 14 ½ inches high so it’s easier to store it in tight spaces. The stainless steel finish on the outside gives it a classic, polished look. Overall, a very convenient coffee urn that will keep your coffee hot for up to 8 hours.
Things we liked:
- Sturdy and well built with stainless steel inside and out
- Compact, not too tall, and very easy to transport
- Easy-to-use lever design
- Comfortable and convenient transport handle
3 – West Bend 58030 12-30 Automatic Party Perk Coffee Urn
West Bend is a name with long history. They have been making kitchen appliances since 1911 and this coffee urn is definitely one of their best products. Equipped with a 1090-watt heater, this coffee urn can brew up to 30 cups of coffee and keep them warm. There are water level markings on the inside, so you can brew exactly the amount of coffee you need. This West Bend coffee urn will brew your coffee at the speed of approximately one cup per minute, so it will take about 30 minutes to brew a full tank of coffee – not too bad.
This stylish coffee urn will look great in any environment, and it’s easily portable too. The power cord is detachable for easy transport and storage, and the twist-to-secure lid prevents any spilling. The two-way dripless faucet will keep the area neat and clean and there is also a light that goes on when the brewing process is finished.
The removable parts are dishwasher safe and the coffee urn is very easy to clean overall because the lid can be removed. A plastic filter basket is also included, so there is no need for disposable filters. Even though it’s made of aluminum, this unit looks very sturdy and the highly-polished aluminum finish gives it a nice and shiny look.
Things we liked:
- Elegant design
- Easy to clean with dishwasher-safe removable parts
- Interior water level markings
4 – Hamilton Beach 40515 42-Cup Coffee Urn
This coffee urn from Hamilton Beach is a great choice if you are looking for a versatile coffee urn that you can use for different purposes. It will allow you to brew up to 42 cups of coffee, so it’s not too big and not too small. You can use every day in your kitchen, but it can also be used for large gatherings where there is a lot of people to serve.
The lid on this coffee urn is completely removable and dishwasher-safe which makes cleaning easy and simple. There is also a brew basket included and it can be washed in the dishwasher too. Furthermore, the 2-way faucet dispenser is conveniently designed so you can press it to fill one cup, or prop up to fill a carafe.
This Hamilton Beach coffee needs only one minute to brew one cup of coffee, which is quite fast (for 42 cups you’ll need about 40 minutes). There is also a light that turns on when the brewing is done so you don’t have to worry about brewing time. Thanks to the polished metal finish, this coffee urn will work great for any type of event – be it a business meeting or a family gathering. It also comes with comfortable, heat-resistant handles on the sides for easy moving.
Things we liked:
- This coffee urn is the perfect size. Great for everyday use if you have a large family, but also large enough for parties and events.
- A light indicator tells you when the brewing time is over
5 – VonShef Thermal Airpot Carafe Coffee Beverage Dispenser Stainless Steel
One of the best things about VonShef Thermal Airpot is how versatile it is. It’s very well insulated, so it can be used for both hot and cold drinks. Your coffee will stay hot for hours and your iced tea will stay cold on a hot day. It has a capacity of 5L which makes it perfect for get-togethers and various other occasions.
What really makes VonShef Thermal Airpot stand out is the way the pump was designed. You just need to press a button on top of the coffee urn to dispense. Thanks to the safety lock and the handle on top, it’s also very easy to transport. The 5L version is 6.75 inches wide and 17.5 inches tall so it’s not too big. It’s definitely the perfect thermal beverage dispenser for camping and tailgating. It also works great for church.
If you are using the VonShef Thermal Airpot for hot beverages, it’s recommended to preheat it for best results. It’s not too hard to do, you just need to fill the airpot with hot water, let it sit for about 15 minutes. After that, you can pour the water out and pour in your coffee, hot chocolate, or beverage of choice. The drink will stay hot for many hours.
Things we liked:
- VonShef Thermal Airpot is suitable for both hot and cold drinks
- Perfect for outdoor activities, picnics, camping, and tailgating
- It’s easy to transport and the safety lock prevents spills
- Very easy to use, just press the button on top to pour
How to Choose a Coffee Urn?
With so many different coffee urns and various types of coffee makers available today, choosing the right one can be a bit difficult. Before you start, it’s a good idea to think about the intended use of your coffee urn as well as how much you are willing to spend. Here are the most important things to consider when buying a coffee urn:
Coffee urns can hold anywhere from 12 to as much as 100 cups of coffee. For this reason, the first thing you need to decide when choosing a coffee urn is what size you need. This will, of course, depend on the number of cups you plan to serve. The West Bend coffee urn on our list holds from 12 to 30 cups of coffee and which would be the perfect size for everyday household use. Many of these smaller urns are easily portable, so they are great for garden parties, outdoor activities, and camping.
However, if you have a 100-cup coffee urn, you don’t really have to make all 100 cups. Large coffee urns usually have water level marks on the inside so you can pour the exact amount of water for the number of cups you need. There is usually a minimum number of cups you can brew in a coffee urn, so make sure to check that information too.
For events and parties, it’s a good idea to make 1 ½ cups of coffee per guest. You’ll also need to consider the size of cups in which you are going to serve your coffee. However, a 100-cup coffee urn will most likely be enough for any event.
Coffee urns are usually made of either stainless steel or aluminum. Aluminum is light, but it doesn’t hold heat as well as stainless steel. The best option is a double-walled stainless steel body because it provides excellent insulation. A layer of air between the two walls keeps the outside of the coffee urn cold and the liquid on the inside hot. Furthermore, even though both polished aluminum and stainless steel look great, stainless steel is much harder and there will be a much lesser chance of dents and scratches showing on your coffee urn.
Coffee urns can keep a reserve of coffee fresh for hours, but some of them can brew the coffee too. Simple coffee urns, like BUNN Lever-Action Airpot and VonShef Thermal Airpot, consist of an insulating body and a lid. The lid usually contains some kind of mechanism for pouring, and there also might be a handle for portability.
On the other hand, some bigger and more professional coffee urns are powered by electricity which allows them to also make the coffee. With these urns, there is usually a filter basket located under the lid. It can be made of either plastic or metal and it holds the coffee grounds (there is usually no need for disposable filters). There is also a heater that warms the water from the inside and a (removable) cable to plug your coffee urn into the wall.
A good coffee urn should also have heat-resistant handles, so you can move it around easily. A lockable lid is also useful because it prevents spilling in case you want to prepare your coffee in advance and then transport it to another location. Some coffee urns will also have an indicator light that will tell you when the coffee is done.
How we Chose the top Coffee Urns on our List
We’ve spent many hours on research and checked out a large number of models in order to find the best coffee urns available on the market. The criteria we used to find the best ones were build quality, durability, functionality, and ease of use.
There are many models out there that look great, but stop working after a while, or they might not even be able to keep the coffee warm. However, all of the urns on our list are reliable and they will surely last for a long time. We’ve also decided to include coffee urns of different sizes on our list (from 12 to 100 cups), so you’ll definitely be able to find one that suits your needs perfectly. For the same reason, we’ve included 3 electric coffee urns and 2 models which don’t use electricity on our list.
Finally, all of the coffee urns on our list have lids that can be secured and heat-resistant handles. We believe that these safety features are simply necessary for a good coffee urn.
Why do You Need a Coffee urn in Your Kitchen?
A nice cup of warm coffee has the magical power of bringing people together and making them feel more comfortable. If you have a large family, or just like to drink a lot of coffee, you’ll definitely benefit from having a coffee urn in your kitchen. You’ll be able to brew a batch in the morning (or even the night before) and always have a fresh cup ready. And if unexpected guests come to visit, you’ll always be able to offer a cup of coffee!
Furthermore, a coffee urn doesn’t have to be used just for coffee. You can use them to boil water for tea for a large group of people, or to keep any liquid warm, be it hot chocolate, soup, or whatever else you need. You can even use them to warm up cider!
If you get a portable coffee urn, it will also have many other uses. You’ll be able to always have hot tea while camping and they are perfect for tailgating. You could even bring a batch of hot chocolate to kids’ sports events, for example.
Of course, coffee urns are a must for parties and large gatherings. People like coffee, and if you don’t want to end up preparing new batches the whole time, you’ll definitely need a coffee urn. They can be used for every type of party, business meetings, church, and whenever there is a large group of people. Any boring presentation will look much better if there is coffee to sip on!
Furthermore, if you don’t want to serve only coffee, you can always warm up water in the coffee urn and prepare bags of instant coffee, tea, and hot chocolate, for example. All of the coffee urns on our list also look very professional and they will be a great addition to any table or buffet.
The coffee urns that allow you to brew the coffee directly in them are actually percolator-style coffee makers. This means that the water will circulate through the coffee and end up in the same pot. For this reason, you’ll need to use coffee ground specifically for percolator brewing for the best results.