Introducing the best espresso tampers. Espresso is one of those drinks that can really get your body going and feeling awake. The caffeinated drink originated in Italy and is a more concentrated version of the more popular drink, coffee. Espresso is served in shots and has a very strong taste. But since it is served as a shot, espresso offers less caffeine per serving compared to coffee. The difference between espresso and coffee is from how the beans are ground.
Compared to coffee, the beans are ground to a much more precise consistency. It is then packed very firmly before water is added. The process is very simple, for the machine at least. What’s needed alongside your coffee machine is a tamper. Beware, just because you have a coffee machine or go out and buy one does not mean it comes with an espresso tamper. That’s how they get a couple more dollars out of the pockets of espresso lovers.
Tampers are very important in the process of making espresso. That’s why we have the best espresso tampers right here for you. The tamper is used to pack the espresso grounds inside of the espresso machine, so the machine can do its job.
When the grounds are packed firmly, it makes it harder for the water to work its way through the ground, giving the espresso a carbonated look because of the bubbles on top after it is dispensed. The strong taste comes from the number of beans that are ground into the machine. There are quite a few coffee beans ground for one shot of espresso made, to say the least.
Maybe the smell is pleasant, but the taste? That’s why it is served as a shot. You don’t normally drink espresso for the taste, although the taste does vary depending on where you get one from or if you’re inconsistent when making it at home. When consuming anything like a shot, you’re not consuming it for the taste. Whether it be for a detox, getting drunk, or caffeinating yourself, a shot isn’t necessarily enjoyable (for most people).
So if you’re a big espresso person and want to save some money instead of going to your local coffee shop every day, I’ve got quite the list of tampers that will not only make the process cheaper but easier when craving that shot of energy. The best tampers on the market can be a little pricey. This list will give you the information you need on which tampers have the best quality along with the best value for your dollar.
10 Best Espresso Tampers
1. Zoie + Chloe Stainless Steel Espresso Coffee Tamper
Zoie + Chloe’s Stainless Steel Espresso Coffee Tamper deserves the top spot out of the best espresso tampers on this list. This stainless-steel tamper is one of the more stylish tampers coming in red and blue. Just like the rest of the tampers on this list, it does the job and it does the job well. It weighs less than the majority of tampers yet still does a great job. Unfortunately, it is not dishwasher safe which means it requires manual cleaning. It also is smaller which makes the process a little harder.
- Dimensions: 2 x 2 x 6 inches
- Weight: 12.8 ounces
- Brand: Zoie + Chloe
Sample Customer Review… This is a high-quality tamper. As near as I can tell it measures exactly 49mm on my dial caliper. Very nicely machined, comfortable in the hand. This proves to me that a good tamper needn’t cost half a fortune. I wish it came in something other than hot pink and baby blue (candy apple red or midnight blue would be nice), but eh; nothing to ding it for, especially at this price.
Now it’d be nice if the filter basket on the Rok I bought along with this tamper also measured 49mm like it says in its description. Alas, it’s ~50.1mm.
Anyway, that’s beside the point – EXCELLENT JOB ON THIS TAMPER.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
2. Omgogo Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper
Omgogo Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper 51mm Barista Espresso Base Coffee Bean Press has the number two spot out of the best espresso tampers on this list. Another stylish tamper makes the list for its looks and its performance. Omgogo’s stainless-steel coffee tamper has a wooden handle making it much more visually pleasing than the other tampers. It is also available in many other sizes. It is also one of the lightest tampers on this list.
- Dimensions: 2.3 x 2.3 x 3.2 inches
- Weight: 7.2 ounces
- Brand: Omgogo
Sample Customer Review… I’ve bought other cheap stainless steel tampers and while they are all pretty much interchangeable, some are not actually stainless steel but chromed brass. Nothing against chromed brass, many parts of an espresso machine are actually chromed brass, including the portafilter.
However, I’m not comfortable with a chromed brass tamper because the chrome can chip off, contaminating your coffee. Also, I’m not sure I should trust the brass used by a no-name tamper maker. Brass can be toxic.
This Omgogo Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper Barista Espresso Tamper 58mm Base Coffee Bean Press that I received with a promotional price is actually made of steel. The handle is real wood, with a good and comfortable shape.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
3. Apexstone Espresso Tamper
The Apexstone 51mm Espresso Tamper takes the number three spot out of the best espresso tampers on this list as one of the most reliable espresso tampers out there. Weighing just over a pound, Apexstone’s Espresso Tamper is made from chrome-plated iron and is one of the most popular products on this list. No extra grip, just straight iron. This espresso tamper will ensure you fresh ground. It does the job just like the other two before it but isn’t as durable but is very inexpensive and is worth the purchase.
- Dimensions: 3.5 x 3 x 2.8 inches
- Weight: 1 pound
- Brand: Apexstone
Sample Customer Review… Gosh.. quality materials and looks great too. Super heavy, does a great job tamping. It is a bit smaller than my espresso filter, but with some maneuvering, can tamp the grounds well enough.
I gave it a good rinse before the first use, tamped out a double shot with my EC-155, and then washed it by hand mildly, with a little soap. I don’t know why some users are so bent on scrubbing this or other tampers or putting them in the dishwasher (never!). Doesn’t need too much cleaning, just like most espresso items, in my opinion.
Nice item. So far so good.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
4. LuxHaus Calibrated Espresso Tamper
The LuxHaus Calibrated Espresso Tamper comes in a variety of sizes and is a good value for what you are paying for it. Unfortunately, it isn’t the most stylish-looking tamper, but it’ll get the job done. One thing to look out for is the logo. You may accidentally pick up some ground inside the engraving. It could be a pain to clean.
- Dimensions: 4.8 x 2.8 x 2.7 inches
- Brand: LuxHaus
- Weight: 0.79 pounds
Sample Customer Review… So, I’ve been using this tamper for a little over a week now and I have to say that it has noticeably improved the consistency of my espresso. I already weighed my beans and ground them fresh, but this was the last piece of the puzzle. Having a consistent force and level tamping base have made the overall quality of my shots improve. The strength is always the same, the crema is dense and full, and the flavor is always spot on (no over/under extraction issues). The results alone speak volumes about the benefit of this tamper, but the craftsmanship is also worth noting. The tamper feels solid and hefty in your hand but not unwieldy or awkward because of it. It’s a comfortable size and shape for my hand and I feel like I can consistently place it correctly and level with ease. The spring is stiff (it’s supposed to be!) but I have no trouble compressing it to tamp my grounds in the portafilter. It’s easy to use and obvious when I’ve compressed enough. The quality is also top-notch. The steel base is flawless and is very precisely turned, cut, and etched. The handle is finely polished with a good grip but is not abrasive. The look blends in perfectly with my modern-looking machine and contemporary kitchen. I love this tamper and would highly recommend LuxHaus to any friend as I feel the cost/value ratio is perfect!Read more reviews at Amazon.com
5. MATOW Coffee Distributor & Tamper
Another tamper option is this Coffee Distributor & Tamper by MATOW. This tamper has a lot of different things you can do with it. It comes with an adjustable lever. It also has a push tamper. But the main con with this product is the price. It is very expensive for an espresso tamper.
- Dimensions: 3.2 x 2.7 x 1.7 inches
- Brand: MATOW
- Weight: 1.08 pounds
Sample Customer Review… If you love espresso and you know the value of consistency, this is a no-brainer! Do yourself and your fresh espresso beans a favor and buy it now!
I never write reviews because I don’t find myself qualified to do so. In this case, however, I must alert everyone to purchase this item! Let me start by saying I am not a distributor so I can not speak for the consistency in shipping or packaging when it arrives to you.
This tamp/distributor is hefty! Which is GOOD! It feels quality. Now, I’ve had a Breville espresso machine for a couple of years now and my Achilles heel has always been consistency. Sometimes the beans weren’t as fresh as I’d like because I didn’t drink enough coffee or sometimes the group head wasn’t quite warm enough. But always my tamping was either too hard or not hard enough; so much wasted coffee. The leveling blade that comes with the Breville works but I feel it waisted too many grounds. Now this bad boy here, this is the truth! I have used it for three weeks now and every single cup has tasted the same, rich and full of flavor (your mileage may differ depending on bean and freshness). The distributor made little to no mess, so long you’re measuring your grounds and not over grinding. The tamp, once set to the desired height (or depth for this matter) made sure I hit dead center on the bar gauge! I can praise this all day, just do yourself a favor and buy it. In no way can you regret it!Read more reviews at Amazon.com
6. Motta Professional Coffee Tamper
This Motta Professional Coffee Tamper has a comfortable wooden and rounded handle to fit perfectly into your palm and remains lightweight despite the heavy stainless steel base. The lighter feel allows for it to be easier to handle, especially for beginners. It has a stylish and beautiful design. Due to the flat-faced base, you are promised a compact and perfectly pressured tamp each time you use it to prepare your coffee.
- Dimensions: 2.28 x 2.28 x 3.54 inches
- Weight: 0.77 pounds
- Brand: Metallurgica Motta
Sample Customer Review… It’s a great tamper that was designed to fit the average palm and I think it looks good too. It is not a heavy piece so I think one can gauge more accurately the pressure one puts onto the coffee by the hand pressure. Because of its design, since the wooden handle “rests” inside the palm, it makes it easier to use the index finger and thumb to create the pressure rather than press hardly on the handle which is the wrong way to press the coffee. I have another heavy one and it’s more difficult to assess because it’s easier just to crush the coffee grinds by using it. However, if you are used to rapping the tamper on the side of the portafilter to dislodge some coffee stuck to the inside, this would not be the one to do it with. First I’d feel bad to ding it or cause marks on it, but it is more because it is light, so you may want to use the wooden handle to do it.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
7. Vienesso Barista Tamper Set
This tamper comes with a silicon tamper mat for easy storage. The tamper features a wooden handle and stainless steel high-quality base. The construction of the product makes it long-lasting. The flatness of the base compresses the coffee perfectly and evenly. The base also disconnects from the handle, which makes cleaning that much easier. The stainless steel base can be washed in the dishwasher. The mat included will catch any leftover grounds on the tamper.
- Dimensions: 4.2 x 3.3 x 3.2 inches
- Weight: 14.4 ounces
- Brand: Vienesso
Sample Customer Review… This tamper is perfect for my espresso machine. Had no problem using it and the build is very sturdy with great wood quality. The wood is not laminated so it doesn’t shine which I prefer. Cleaning is very easy as you can unscrew out the handle from the base and clean. Do note that there could be some minor imperfections in the base metal which I noticed on mine but it wasn’t like a dent or caused any impact on my preparation. The rubber silicone base is a nice touch too to place my tamper on without damaging it but functionality-wise, not much you can do besides resting the tamper on it after you cleaned it. I would highly recommend getting this as the build is great.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
8. HIC Dual-Sided Coffee Tamper
The HIC Dual-Sided Coffee Tamper is a great option because it is dual-sided with two sizes. One side is 50 millimeters and the other side is 55 millimeters. It is made with high quality and heavy-duty aluminum. This is an amazing feature since aluminum resists corrosive acids in coffee. Those acids are what cause cheap or metal-coated tampers to not last as long. This tamper will be easily maintained for a long time. Its clean design makes it easy to clean as well.
- Dimensions: 2.25 x 2.25 x 2.75 inches
- Weight: 4 ounces
- Brand: HIC Harold Import Co.
Sample Customer Review… I bought a low-end espresso machine at a deep discount, and it came with a plastic spoon/tamper that I used for 3 months, reluctant to spend a lot of money (as I know making good espresso at home can get very expensive very quickly.) This is an excellent solution to my plastic problem. The smaller end of the tamper fits perfectly, and the size and weight just feel good when pressing down. I have medium-sized girl hands, and I like how easy it is to apply pressure with my palm on the flat surface versus rounded knobs on other tampers. I was exceptionally pleased with this purchase, especially for the price.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
9. BlueSnail Stainless Steel Coffee Tamper Barista Espresso Tamper
Bluesnail’s stainless-steel espresso and coffee tamper is a quality product. This tamper is one of the least expensive tampers on this list but that low price comes with worse quality. That doesn’t mean it can’t still do the job. If you’re looking for a cheap tamper, for the time being, this is a good option.
- Dimensions: 3.2 x 1.2 x 1.2 inches
- Weight: 1.23 pounds
- Brand: Bluesnail
Sample Customer Review… A good tamper will allow you to get all the crema and all the flavor. The tighter pack increases steam back pressure in the filter cup thereby slowing down the coffee extraction and getting the maximum possible flavor. I struggled for a couple of years with a nice tamper (a gift) that had a padded handle, but the diameter of the compacting surface was too small. I couldn’t get the pack even and the coffee always lacked something. When I bought my Essential Values SS Coffee Tamper that was the correct size, the flavor improved dramatically. Measure your filter cup inside diameter in millimeters and get the tamper that’s one millimeter smaller in diameter. This is a superbly crafted product and should last forever even with daily or hourly use. Fill your filter cup level with beans. Grind those beans in your grinder. Transfer the ground beans to your filter cup. Put plenty of downward pressure on your tamper as you twist back and forth a few times. Clean the tamper by twisting with no pressure. You will be drinking the best possible espresso from the roasted beans you have chosen.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
10. ESPRO Calibrated Stainless Steel Flat Espresso Coffee Tamper
Out of the best espresso tampers, the ESPRO Calibrated Stainless Steel Flat Espresso Coffee Tamper just makes our list. The product will perform at a high level and give you the necessary ground needed for your espresso. The main difference between this and Apexstone tamper is the price. This product is calibrated by the manufacturer but it comes with a higher price tag. If you have a larger budget and want to save a little extra time, this product is the one for you.
- Dimensions: 2.25 x 3.5 x 2.25 inches
- Weight: 1 pound
- Brand: ESPRO
Sample Customer Review… This is pure genius. Instead of putting your bathroom scale on the counter to see what 30 pounds of pressure feels like, get the Espro tamper. The more variables you can control, the more consistent your shot pulling will be. This has been especially helpful because there is more than one person in our home that makes espresso and espresso-based drinks. Sure it’s pricy but consistency is key to avoid pulling inconsistently tamped shots. We’ve gone through a couple of whole bean coffee trying to dial in our shot pulling. Since using the Espro tamper, we were able to focus on dialing in our grind while keeping all other variables constant. You’ll get a quiet audible click as well as a feel when you’ve successfully applied the suggested 30lbs of tamping force.Read more reviews at Amazon.com
Buying Guide: Things To Consider When Purchasing the Best Espresso Tampers
Though this list has almost all the information you need to make your purchase there are a few more things you should know when going to make any purchase, especially if it is an expensive one.
You need to consider which brand you are buying. The best espresso tampers feature a majority of different high-quality brands. There are many brands out there, some are better than others, some are worse than others.
When purchasing an item online it is important to see if you recognize the brand of the item. If you can’t it isn’t a big deal, but if you know the brand or have heard of it, that’s a good sign. Nobody wants to purchase a low-quality product because the price looked cheaper than the main brand. You might want to spend a couple of extra dollars just to get the most recognizable brand because it usually is the safer bet.
Take into consideration if you can return the item if it isn’t what you expected or if you purchase the wrong item. A majority of espresso tampers are inexpensive so if you end up buying one with no return policy and something is broken you don’t have many options and you won’t be able to get your money back. The bigger the company the more likely they are to accept returns. That doesn’t mean the smaller brands won’t do returns, but the well-known brands are definitely the safer options.
If a tamper is calibrated, it has a space between the handle and base. When used, the two will help indicate when the correct amount of pressure is being applied. A calibrated tamper may be helpful for those new to using one.
Another thing to take into consideration is most importantly the price, especially for those on a budget. The more expensive the tamper the higher the quality. Although this doesn’t apply to every espresso tamper it applies to most. The list here includes various affordable tampers that will perform well. Getting the highest quality product for the lowest price is the goal when purchasing anything.
The weight of your tamper will directly affect the pressure you apply. A heavier tamper will allow you to get the right amount of pressure. Heavier materials used in making the tampers will be best to achieve this.
The handle is important since it’s what you’ll notice most when using the tamper. Choose a material that is comfortable to you as well as a handle size that fits your hand correctly.
Tampers come in different base shapes, typically flat or convex. A flat tamper has a flat bottom while the convex is curved in order to prevent channeling. Either works well, but consider which you’ll enjoy best.
You should also make sure the espresso tamper you are purchasing fits your skill level unless you are willing to learn about how to use the more advanced tampers.
In conclusion, out of the seven total tampers listed, all of them are good choices depending on what you are looking for. As long as you find a quality tamper you should be on your way to making espresso. Like coffee, espresso is one of those beverages that can really wake you up and it is important to make it with consistency in order to see and feel results when consuming.
The process of tampering and packing the beans is very simple and as long as you do it the correct way and know how to use your tamper, you will see those results. This list of the best espresso tampers should give you a clear path to find what kind of espresso tamper you are looking for and I wish you the best of luck during your research and hopefully, this is all the information you need to go out and buy the tamper you are looking for. No matter which of the best espresso tampers you purchase, the options are all great choices. Remember to consider all of the included factors when making this purchase and enjoy your espresso!
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Written by Nicholas Mason and Hannah Ness