Is There a Difference Between a Tea Maker and a Regular Kettle?
If you’ve been researching automatic tea makers, at first glace, you might confuse them with the more modern glass electric kettle. And looking at the huge price difference between them, you could be wondering why get a tea maker when I can get an average kettle?
Well, there’s actually a big difference between the two appliances, and that’s what we’ll try to break in this post.
What Is an Automatic Tea Maker and Do I Need One?
If you’re a tea lover, you probably know that each type of tea (green, black, Oolong… etc) requires different time of steeping as well as different water temperature. An automatic tea maker takes the guess work out of tea making by doing it all for you. An automatic tea maker has:
- A variable temperature setting that can be set automatically or manually by you. Each tea type has a pre-set temperature setting that you can choose.
- A filter basket that holds your tea to steep it.
- An adjustable counter for steeping.
- A ‘keep warm’ feature that keeps your tea warm for a period of time so it doesn’t get cold.
- Additionally, an automatic tea maker will also make you hot water only.
How Is It Different Than a Kettle? or a Variable Temperature Kettle?
Well, a kettle is just that… a kettle that boils water. On the other hand, a variable temperature kettle can boil your water to a desired temperature and keep water warm (some models, at least), but it doesn’t steep tea, you’ll have to do that separately.
Do You Need an Automatic Tea Maker?
Not all tea lovers need an electric tea maker. It is certainly a great product to have, but might not provide much value to you if, for example, you only enjoy tea bags, or one type of tea. In that case, you might just need a variable temperature kettle that can give you the right temperature for the best tea results.
Who needs an automatic tea maker then?
- If you enjoy drinking different types of tea that require different temperatures or steep times
- If you like to drink more than one cup of tea at a time, you’ll love having a full pot of tea ready and kept warm.
- If you entertain guests who like tea, or have many members of the family who enjoy it.
There are many instances where an automatic tea maker would provide lots of value to you.
Which Automatic Tea Makers Are The Best Rated?
Breville One-Touch Tea Maker:
- Automated basket that lowers and lifts the filter automatically according to programmed steeping time.
- Fully programmable for each type of tea: black, white, green, Oolong and more.
- Pre-set and reprogrammable water temperatures and steep time.
- LCD screen displays steeping time and water temperature.
- Choose from strong, medium, mild or custom taste.
- Auto start option.
- Keep Warm feature keeps tea warm for up to 60 minutes.
- Hot Water allows you to boil water only.
- 1.5L capacity
Cuisinart 2-in-1 PerfeTemp Tea Steeper and Kettle:
- Select from 6 pre-set water temperature.
- Steeping basket (tea infuser) attaches to the lid and can be removed.
- Infuser has to be discarded manually after steeping time is done.
- Adjustable count down steeping timer.
- Keep Warm feature keeps tea warm for up to 30 minutes.
- Remove tea infuser to use the tea maker as a kettle.
- 1.2 L capacity.
Chefman’s Precision Water Kettle:
- A variable temperature kettle with tea infuser attached.
- Keep Warm feature keeps water or tea hot for up to 60 minutes at desired temperature.
- Choose from 10 pre-set temperatures.
- 1.7 Liter capacity.
- This product does NOT have a steep timer or tea type pre-sets. It’s more of a variable temperature kettle with a removable tea infuser.
Which One Should You Buy?
- Our favorite, as well as customers’, by far is the Breville One-Touch Tea Maker. It has the most advanced features of all tea makers, the automated brew basket which goes down and up automatically at your desired steep time ensures that your tea doesn’t over steep and it is simply fun to look at!
- The second best choice is the Cuisinart PerfecTemp. It has great pre-sets and works as advertised. Our only issue is that the tea infuser has to be removed manually once the steeping timer beeps.
- The Chefman is first a variable temperature kettle with the added feature of a tea infuser, so it lacks the specialty features of a tea maker, but it works if you’re looking for basic features.
Watch How the Tea Makers Work in Action:
Breville Tea Maker:
Cuisinart Tea Maker: