The best 2 way coffee makers that we have found include two very familiar brands. The Cuisinart is known for quality products and we have used several of them in our homes. The Hamilton Beach is also known for good quality and producing affordable appliances that make life easier.

Why a 2 way coffee maker?  A one cup coffee maker is great when you are having coffee alone. However, when you have family or friends over, it is great to have a dual coffee maker that provides the flexibility you often need for different tastes. Family, friends, and good coffee are prime ingredients for a good time at home.

As  an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases.  Never the less, we will always give you our own point of view from the most accurate information we have available. You may read our full disclosure here.



After looking for the best dual brew coffee makers, we finally focused on two great ones that offer the choice of your own ground coffee or the use of K Cups on the single serve side.

We really like them and have had some really great coffee from both models ourselves. For your benefit, we would like to share our 2 way coffee maker reviews on these two products. 

Update: we now compare a couple of Keurig’s 2 in 1 models here.

We will start with the Hamilton Beach coffeemaker, move to the Cuisinart and then sum up our thoughts on each.


Hamilton Beach 49976 Flex brew 2-Way Brewer Programmable Coffee Maker, BlackHamilton Beach 49976 Flex brew 2-Way Brewer Programmable Coffee Maker, Black

The  49976 model of the  Hamilton Beach Flex Brew 2 Way Coffee Maker became available on April 6, 2017.  It was an improvement of the previous models. Hamilton Beach is a trusted household brand name of many consumer products and has been around for well over 100 years. This updated 2 way coffee maker is no exception to its tradition of excellence.

This model gives you the choice of your own ground coffee or K-Cup capability on the single serve side. On the pot side, you can brew from 2 to 12 cups of coffee. You also can choose either regular brew or bold brew


We think that there is nothing like a freshly brewed cup of your favorite coffee in the morning to start the day right for you. The Hamilton Beach 2 way coffee maker gives you the option of that one great cup of coffee, from either ground or your chosen K-cup, with its single serve brew option.

If you are like us and may need a second cup to really boost your energy, then you can choose the carafe brew option where you can brew from 2 to 12 cups of coffee. Either way, you will be fully ready to tackle your challenging new day!

By the way, for tea drinkers, you can use your choice loose tea instead of ground coffee to make a carafe or a single cup. We personally use a variety of teas quite frequently in addition to making our beloved coffee. Placing a tea bag in the holder for coffee grounds works well too. It is very nice to have the option of using all your favorite brews.


The Hamilton Beach Flex Brew 49976 has two separate water reservoirs, for single serve and carafe brew options, with easy viewing for the water levels. The water reservoirs and the filter baskets are removable for effortless cleaning and filling.

The single serve brewing option allows brewing for either a cup or a travel mug… We like having a tall mug of delicious coffee to sip on while on the road in our car.

There is also an adjustable rest on the single serve side that facilitates the use of a standard size cup or a travel mug up to 8 inches tall.

You can program this coffee maker up to 24 hours in advance to brew a whole 12-cup carafe of delicious Regular or Bold strength coffee. It will then automatically shut off the warmer plate two hours after it finishes brewing.


In the previous model of this machine, some owners had a problem with the taste of plastic in their brewed coffee. We have not found this to be a problem in this updated model. In fact, most owners have stated that coffee brewed from this two way coffee maker is delicious.

However, most of those who had this issue in the older model found that the problem could be easily corrected by running a solution of white vinegar through a couple of brewing cycles using an empty filter. They then ran a couple of rinse cycles with plain water afterward. The plastic taste disappeared.


Another issue was with the warmer plate on a previous model. In this updated model the carafe warmer plate goes off as soon as you turn on the single serve side. The older model warmer plate would be on no matter which side you brewed from. Hamilton Beach considered this a safety factor and corrected it.

So, if someone is making a single cup of a specialty brew, then the carafe side is no longer keeping the pot warm. You would need to turn the switch back to the carafe side after brewing the single cup and press power. Then it will keep your pot of coffee nice and hot until the 2 hour automatic shutoff.


A few have mentioned that the carafe drips when pouring coffee out of it. Most people do not have this problem. However, if you do, you can avoid this from happening by pouring the coffee just a little slower. If you watch the video you will note there is no dripping.


Some have asked as to why the 12-cup brew side does not have a permanent filter like the single serve side. Unfortunately, that is the way Hamilton Beach sells this particular model. However, the same coffee maker is now sold under a different model number that includes the filter for a few extra dollars. That is the Hamilton Beach Flexbrew programmable coffee maker with Gold Tone Filter 49950C.

If a permanent filter is not important to you then you can save a couple dollars by purchasing the Hamilton Beach Flex Brew 49976 model as described above.


Another consideration for this machine is that the coffee is not hot enough for some people. This is a matter of personal taste. Glenda has had coffee from this coffee maker and it is plenty hot enough for her and the rest of the family. No one who has had coffee from this coffee maker has ever complained that it was not hot enough. Still, some people like their coffee hot enough to burn you.

One gentleman did a complete test on the coffee maker using a digital cooking thermometer. You can read his results on Amazon and perhaps that will help you determine if it is hot enough for you.

In our own testing, we found the temperature of the grounds just after the brew cycle completed was 200 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the optimal brewing temperature for flavor extraction. We also found that the coffee cooled somewhat as it dripped down into the pot or cup.

If you add a lot of cold cream or milk to your coffee, that will cool it down. If that is the case, you may want to put it in the microwave for 15-30 seconds to get it back nice and hot.

ABOUT THE CUISINART 2 WAY COFFEE MAKER Cuisinart SS-15 12-Cup Coffee Maker and Single-Serve Brewer, Stainless SteelCuisinart SS-15 12-Cup Coffee Maker and Single-Serve Brewer, Stainless Steel

You can usually expect some good and quality features from Cuisinart and this Cuisinart 2 way coffee maker proves that point. This 2 way coffee maker allows you to brew a 12-cup pot or a single cup.

You have a choice of brewing a 6-ounce, 8-ounce or 10-ounce cup from the single side. The pot side is fully programmable and can be set to brew up to 24 hours ahead.

A few more features of this Cuisinart include:

  • An easy-pour no-drip 12-cup carafe
  • A brew pause that allows you to get a cup before the brew is finished
  • Water reservoir with water level indicator window
  • A power loss backup system that provides one minute of protection for your programmed information
  • A Clean indicator to let you know when to clean the coffee maker
  • Temperature knob settings for Low, Medium, or High to give you a choice of how warm or hot you prefer to keep your coffee
  • Choice of Regular or Bold brewed coffee


In order to have good tasting coffee, the water you use must also be good tasting. Cuisinart ensures that by including a charcoal water filter for each reservoir.

Many former Keurig coffee maker owners have moved on to this machine and love it.According to this owner, it will give you a delicious hot cup of coffee very quickly. Glenda also has this machine and loves it.


This is something that you should always do no matter who the maker is. Sometimes there are things that if done incorrectly, can mess up your new product. The Cuisinart is the same. However, this post has been updated because it seems apparent that the instructions are lacking a couple important details.

  1. when doing the first rinse, put in place the home barista filter (included) to enable the water to come down in a stream instead of splashing.
  2. either use a tall travel mug or place something on the platform to raise a smaller cup. (Coasters work beautifully)

That will save you from having a watery mess. We gave the details of what was happening in this post about the Cuisinart Coffee Center.

Other important things to pay attention to is;

  • to line up the white arrows on the single serve side. If placed improperly it can impede the proper flow of water.
  • push the coffee pod down until it snaps in the holder before closing the lid. Otherwise, you have not punctured the bottom and the top will tear too large a hole when you close the lid.

Of the two coffee makers we are reviewing in this article, this one is probably the fastest brewing machine. It also makes the best tasting coffee in our opinion. You just need to pay attention to a few details when setting up the machine and using it on a daily basis.


This Cuisinart has a cleaning cycle and it is recommended to start your use of the machine by cleaning each side first. After which the pot is ready to brew your favorite coffee in your choice of sizes.

One thing we noted from each of these coffee makers is the importance of keeping the machines clean. Proper cleaning helps keep your coffee tasting fresh and delicious and prolongs the life of your coffee maker.

We found this great descaling solution which is compatible with all brands of coffee and espresso machines. You may really want to keep one on hand in your kitchen.

We recommend that you check out this helpful video on the Cuisinart 2 way coffee maker


Let us now list the pros and the cons for the Hamilton Beach Flex coffee maker and the Cuisinart 2 way coffee maker. All the pros and cons seen here are based on the delight or the concerns of owners of these 2 way coffee makers.


    • Has all the necessary features to brew your favorite coffee in either a single cup or carafe.
    • Single cup side accepts either a K cup pod or your own grounds.
    • Single cup size up to 10 oz with K cup or 14 oz with your own grounds
    • Has good filtration.
    • Is programmable.
  • Warming plate keeps coffee very hot for 2 hours
    • Gives you plenty of useful features with two brewing options.
    • Single cup side accepts either a K cup pod or your own grounds to brew 6, 8 or 10 ounces
    • Charcoal filter in both sides for better taste
    • Brews your carafe or single cup coffee real fast.
      • Has hot water feature in all 3 sizes.


      • Is programmable


    • warming plate has an temperature control.
    • warming plate  adjustable to be on for 0 – 4 hours


    • Takes 7 to 10 minutes to brew a carafe. About standard but slower than the Cuisinart.
    • Has no charcoal filter.
    • Single side reservoir has to be filled with each cup.
    • Carafe side has no permanent filter. Must use paper filters
  • Has only a 1-year warranty.
    • Some concerns about the brewed coffee quality & taste when using tap water or hard water.
    • The “Brewer Handle” on the single serve side may lock – have to unplug unit to reset & free it.
  • Some operation & durability issues by owners… most of these issues are avoidable if the new owner follows the above tips and reads the instructions first.

Our featured Hamilton Beach and Cuisinart 2 way coffee makers are among the top rated coffee makers of their kind available on the market today. The reason millions of people select such coffee makers for their home or work is simply for Convenience, Brew Options, Quality, and Ease of Use.

Another major factor is their reasonably low cost. Whether you want just a single cup or a whole pot, the benefit of a dual purpose 2 way coffee maker is obvious.

Both the Hamilton Beach 49976 and the Cuisinart SS-15 coffee makers give you most of the features you would want in a two way automatic drip coffee maker. Yet, the Hamilton Beach is more affordably priced than the Cuisinart. The Cuisinart has a few more beneficial features, as you have noticed in our comparison matrix and review above, which can account for its higher price.

So What is the Best 2 way Coffee Maker?

Bottom line, we have picked the Cuisinart SS-15 and the Hamilton Beach 49976 coffee makers because they are both well made, reliable and affordable. We found many users who praised these machines and were very happy with their purchases.

We believe, though, that the more expensive Cuisinart SS-15 has an edge in the following added areas… Faster Brewing Speed, More Features, Better Built, and a Better 3-Year Warranty.

The more affordable Hamilton Beach had  A Larger Cup Size Option, Better Ease of Use with Fewer Problems but only a one year warranty. 

Of course, you are ultimately the one to decide which is the best 2 way coffee maker for you. It depends on which features would benefit you the most. You should be happy with either depending on your own individual feature need.

We are here to share our information with you based on research and personal experience. We hope that this article has been of help to you on your purchase of your next new coffee maker… Enjoy!

Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc. or its affiliates

Related Posts:

How To Make Perfect Drip Coffee

Ninja Coffee Bar System Review

Before You Buy a Cuisinart Coffee Center


Sharing is caring!

You May Also Like These Topics...




  Great rich tasting coffee made simple and easy is what you get with a Cuisinart Coffee Center. But before you buy a Cuisinart Coffee Center, there are a couple of things you need to know. This post is the result of our investigating a problem a customer had when she set up her Cuisinart […]

How to make perfect drip coffee at home


+ CAN YOU REALLY MAKE PERFECT DRIP COFFEE AT HOME? Make perfect drip coffee at home? In fact, yes, it can be done. We have a feeling that any one of the many millions of coffee drinkers may claim to know the secret of how to make perfect drip coffee. There are literally just as many ways […]

Ninja Coffee Bar System Review


This Ninja Coffee Bar System Review is a personal one. We can learn a lot from simply doing research. However, sometimes you have to have personal experience with a product to fully test it out. We did not know what to make of other information online so we purchased one for ourselves. It has now been nearly […]

Previous Post
Instant pot duo mini and 8 qt


Next Post



    • Lisa

    We love our new Hamiton Beach Flex Brew! I love the option of caraffe or cup. Works great with a houseful of different tastes and times of coffee drinkers. However we have one question: sometimes we still want to keep the pot warm after two hours. Can we just press the power/brew button? We were afraid it would try to heat up water in the reservoir (that isnt there) and damage the coffeemaker. Can you help us with this question? Thank you, Lisa

      • Glenda

      Hi Lisa… Glad that you are enjoying the new Hamilton Beach Flex Brew. Yes, you can just turn the switch back to the pot and turn it on. It will try to heat water again but if this concerns you just add a small amount of water to the tank. That would not be enough to dilute your coffee and will keep your coffee hot for another two hours. If the coffee has sat there for two hours it might need a little diluting anyway. Thank you for commenting.

    • Deb cleversy

    I have the cuisinart two way coffe brewer and when using the single serve side the water is not hot enough,my question is how and when does it heat the water?it seems when we put in pod and push cup size it starts to brew right away. How does the water get hot?? Thanks other we love it just enjoy very hot coffee


      • Glenda

      Hi there Deb,

      I am glad that you are enjoying your Cuisinart Coffee Maker. The Cuisinart has an on/off switch which should be kept on in order for the elements to be ready to brew hot coffee. You only need to turn it off if the pot is empty and the warmer plate is still on. I will turn mine back on if that is the case so it will be ready to brew hot coffee instead of waiting. The machine will delay a brew slightly if it needs to warm up but your coffee will be hotter if you have it on to preheat first.

      Also, I can tell you that it makes a difference as to what kind of cup you brew it into. If you are using an ordinary ceramic cup, you might want to consider prewarming that cup with very hot water before brewing your coffee. The reason for that is the cup takes away some of the heat from the coffee if it is cold.

      On the Pot side there is an option for keeping the carafe warm by selecting either low, medium or high. Of course, there is no need to keep the cup warm. You just want it to be hot enough to start with. If you add milk or cream to your coffee trying heating that in the microwave and then brewing your coffee. I do hope this helps as it is indeed a great coffee maker.

    • Kim Kennedy

    I purchased the Cuisinart coffee duo system. I was so excited when it arrived, but the single serve side was awful! Back to the store it went. The liquid would spray all over the place! And yes, I did read the instructions and yes, I lined up the arrows!

      • Glenda

      Hi Kim,
      Thank you for your feedback. Jay already had a Cuisinart but neither of us had this particular model. Your note prompted us to purchase this model and do our own testing. You had a right to be upset. I also thank you for providing more information about how you set the machine up so that we could duplicate what you did.

      As you can see, we have created an additional post ( documenting my own experience with the Cuisinart Coffee Center. We took our time testing it out as we did not know if any further problems would develop. We were able to determine the cause of your problem and found a simple solution that enables me to enjoy some delicious coffee without having a mess on my hands. I do hope that you found a replacement that made you happy.

      We have contacted Cuisinart about the problem and made suggestions for their future instructions plus recommended that they also sell a raised platform with this model.

    • Robert Parker

    I have the Hamilton Beach dual coffee maker and about every third time we brew a single cup it spews coffee and grounds all over the front. I have cleaned it and done everything you showed in your video, but it is still a problem.

      • Glenda

      Hi Robert,
      Thanks for the feedback. For it to spew coffee grounds and coffee over the front there are two or three possibilities. The most likely possibility is that the pod holder has not been placed in the machine correctly or that the needles have clogged. When you are cleaning it are you using a paper clip to clean out the needles? That helps.

      Also make sure that when you place the capsule in the holder, that it is all the way down before closing the lid. When you close the lid and the pod is not fully down then that can cause problems. Just closing the lid to push it down can cause the needle to tear a hole in the foil lid of the pod that is larger than needed. You also may not have as large a hole in the bottom of the pod. When water flows in then it will fill the capsule with water and coffee and grounds can come out the front.

      Sometimes it is just a defect in the pod itself when the seal is not as secure as it should be around the rim. This is more likely to happen with cheaper made store brands than with name brands.

      If the machine itself was faulty then it would be every time no matter how you placed the pod inside. I sincerely hope that this helps you to get the coffee you enjoy without problems.

    • Mary mauck

    Comparing Hamilton Beach 49976 with Hamilton Beach 49980z. Which is newer?

      • Glenda

      Hi Mary,
      The model numbers can be confusing. However the 49976 is the newer model and is compatible with both the k cups and your own ground coffee. The older 49980z model is not kcup compatible. Hope that this helps.

    • Stephanie Garewal

    I am considering purchasing the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew 2-Way Black Stainless Coffee Maker model # 49958. It appears to be similar to model #49976 only a stainless version?? I do want the option to use k cups and my own ground coffee. Can you tell if these models are similar?

      • Glenda

      Hello Stephanie,
      I am not familiar with model #49958 and cannot find a reference for it. Were you perhaps referring to model #49968 instead? That model is a great choice as well as long as you do not want the 12 cup carafe. It is for single cups in 8, 10, or 14 ounce sizes. You may use either pre-made pods or your own favorite ground coffee just like in the #49976 model. The only other difference is that this one also has a 40 ounce reservoir.

    • Ellen Hayes

    Hello, Thank you for your reviews of these coffee makers. They are very helpful.
    My question is about flavored coffee vs. regular coffee from either brand. Will there still be a hint of flavor in your regular coffee, either a carafe or single serve, if you made flavored coffee prior to making regular? I have had that experience in other coffee makers.

      • Glenda

      Hello Ellen,
      I am glad that our reviews are helping you to find the information that you need. Regarding the flavored coffee vs. regular coffee, Whichever you use, the key is to wash the components thoroughly in soapy water before changing from one to another. Sometimes people forget that there are more components underneath the filter itself, (in some machines) that also is touched by the coffee dripping down. Be sure that these are also cleaned.

      It would be much easier to keep the flavors separate using the single serve function. That is because you can purchase additional reusable filters for use only for the flavored variety. For instance, In my Cuisinart I have additional filters that fit in my machine just like a coffee pod. I use the Ekobrew brand that you can find in most grocery stores. Amazon has them too here. They fit the Cuisinart but not the Hamilton Beach. It is made a little differently.
      You also could simply use the provided reusable filters that come with both machines.

      Anytime you change from coffee to tea or a flavored variety in any machine, it is best to use equipment that is easy to wash and rinse to avoid having the flavors linger over to the next style.

      I do hope that this helps you and you are able to enjoy your own choice blend without hindering someone else and theirs.
      Take care now.

    • Scott

    Looks like the Cuisinart would be my choice except for the reusable filter. Can you use a paper filter with the Cuisinart? I hate the mess of washing out the reusable metal filters in those type of machines.

      • Glenda

      Yes you can and that is what I usually do as well. I prefer to use the Melitta brown paper filters with my machine. It uses the #4 cone filter.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *