When catering for any group of people, it’s a good rule of thumb to always keep lots of good coffee on hand. However, keeping all of the coffee hot for an extended period of time can be a bit tricky; that’s why it’s important to make sure that you’re working with the best equipment. So, through this article we’ll be giving you the best coffee urns for you!
Coffee urns can brew large amounts of coffee at a time, keep it piping hot, and are fairly easy to use, just like a regular coffee pot.
All it takes is hot water and your favorite coffee grounds. Because coffee urns sport a spigot at the bottom, they can also help prevent some of the mess that comes with a traditional coffee pot that requires each cup to be individually poured.
The downside is that coffee urns can be a little pricey! However, as long as you know what to look for. You’ll be able to pick the best model to suit your needs.
Each model was evaluated based on six key criteria using a system of 1-5 stars, 1 indicating poor performance and 5 indicating exceptionality.
- Price – How much does it cost?
- Max Volume – How much can it hold?
- Transportability – How easy is it to move from place to place?
- Efficiency – How long can it keep coffee warm?
- Other Design Features – Does it have any unique features that add to the user experience
- Looks – Is it visually appealing?
Keep reading to see our Buyer’s Guide, which can help you to pick an alternative model if the ones on this list aren’t right for you.
Best Coffee Urns
- Cresimo 101 Oz Airpot Coffee Carafe and Coffee Server Review
- SYBO RCMO16S – 16B Commercial Coffee Urn Review
- Double-Faucet Homecraft CUDS45SS Double-Faucet Urn Review
- Hamilton Beach 45 Cup Coffee Urn Review
- Proctor 60 Cup Coffee Urn Review
1. Best 30 Cup Coffee Maker – Cresimo 101 Oz Airpot Coffee Carafe and Coffee Server Review
Our first entry is for those of us who need a solution on a tight budget—coming in at just under $40. this model is great for smaller groups who don’t need anything too large or too fancy With a 3 Liter (just shy of 13 cups) maximum capacity, this model doesn’t hold as much as some of its competitors.
The double-walled 18/8 stainless steel interior and exterior claims to be able to retain hot temperatures for up to 12 hours and cold temperatures for up to 24 hours. The listing is slightly misleading; in one of the images, it claims to have 24-hour temperature retention for both hot and cold liquids, whereas the listing itself cuts the heated temperature’s time in half.
To be safe, it’s best to assume that the lower number is more accurate. The spigot system on this model is notably different from its competitors. Instead of featuring a spot at the bottom, this coffee um uses a pump-action nozzle near the top handle.
This could potentially cause problems if the pumping system breaks or is otherwise faulty because other coffee urns use the power of gravity to allow coffee to escape freely through a downspout; it is much easier to get every last drop.
This style could potentially lead to a situation where nothing is coming out of the spout, yet there is still a small amount of coffee trapped at the bottom. However, at the same time, this style of spigot makes it easily accessible for all types of cup shapes.
In some coffee urns, there is only a small amount of room to fit a mug, resulting in difficulty for anybody using an oversized mug. This model eliminates that struggle altogether.
This model also does not automatically boil water for you. You’ll have to boil the water that you plan to use before putting it in. This can be slightly inconvenient, as you will then have to wait for a few minutes before having a hot cup of coffee. Furthermore, this model does not have an indicator light to tell you when your coffee is ready, so you may need to keep an eye on it while it is brewing.
Most customer complaints come from the fact that the vacuum seal technology that is meant to keep the coffee warm is unreliable and prone to breaking after just a few uses. Many have reported that the outside of this coffee um gets warm, indicating that large amounts of heat are continuing to escape through the layers of stainless steel.
However, reviews are incredibly mixed on this subject; some say that their coffee went cold very rapidly, while others claim that temperatures stayed at an acceptable level for anywhere between 4-5 hours. Either way, this model doesn’t exactly meet the heat retention standards that are one of the biggest selling points of the listing.
Overall, while this isn’t the greatest model on the market, it’s one of the best options for a shopper on a budget.
Price: 5 Stars
Coming in at just under $40, this is easily the cheapest option on this list.
Max Volume: 3 Stars
This model holds significantly less than some of the other models on this list. While this may be great for small gatherings, it may not be so convenient for larger groups of people.
Transportability: 5 Stars
Due to its compact build and lightweight, this model is much easier to move around than some of its competitors.
Efficiency: 2 Stars
Most of the complaints against this model come from its inability to keep coffee warm for long periods of time. If you plan to use it for longer than a few hours and won’t have time to reheat your drinks, this may not be the right model for you.
Design Features: 3 Stars
The pump-action nozzle is both positive and negative; while it allows for use with larger mugs, it could also be a component that easily breaks or misses the coffee on the bottom. However, this model also features a very large mouth opening, allowing for easy cleaning and drying.
Looks: 4 Stars
Not overly flashy, this coffee urn sports a sleek stainless steel exterior. While it definitely isn’t a statement piece, there is nothing particularly unappealing about its appearance.
2. Large Capacity Coffee Maker – SYBO RCMO16S – 16B Commercial Coffee Urn Review
This model is made for massive gatherings and can hold up to 110 cups of your favorite brew. It looks like the classic coffee urn meant for any business meeting; it’s large, simple, and here to get the job done.
However, this coffee urn also comes in both 30 cup and 55 cup alternatives. Each size sports the same features while simultaneously dropping drastically in price.
Unlike the previous entry on this list, this model sports a traditional spigot at the base. It’s lid also twists to open and locks in order to prevent heat loss. On the face, there is also a convenient liquid level gauge, which allows you to easily see how much coffee is left inside.
Near the dispenser, there is also a handy indicator light that lets you see what mode the urn is functioning in: heating or keeping warm. Because this can be set to continue warming for an extended period of time, the coffee inside of it will stay warm for an undetermined amount of time. Taking a look under the lid, the 304 SiS basket does not require a paper filter, and the interior percolating system is built to last even after heavy usage
Other than some issues regarding leaking and electrical issues, which are few and far between, there are very few complaints against this coffee urn. Some customers report that while the exterior shows no signs of rusting, the filter and filter cover started to rust not long after starting use. This model may also run a bit on the noisier side, so it may not be best for quiet environments.
In terms of brewing time, this model is one of the slower options. Most likely due to the fact that it has to make a very large volume of coffee all at the same time, it could take upwards of 40 minutes to finish brewing.
The listing is slightly misleading when addressing brew time; in one section, it says 40 minutes, while in another it says 15-20 minutes Presumably this is depending on the amount of coffee that you intend to brew. Either way, if you purchase this model, be sure to give it plenty of time to work before you’re ready to start serving.
For large gatherings, this is going to be one of the best options on the market. Sturdy, durable, and built to last, this coffee urn by SYBO is for the bigger jobs. Out of all the large capacity coffee makers, this is the biggest.
Price: 4 Stars
While this is one of the more expensive options on the market, it’s a good deal when all things are considered. Its large capacity, consistent dependability, and efficient design make the higher price tag worth it in the end.
Max Volume: 5 Stars
The massive amount of coffee that this urn can produce is perfect for any large gathering. Furthermore, the smaller options are also very convenient for people who don’t need nearly as much brewing power.
Transportability: 3 Stars
At 23 x 14 x 14 inches and just over 13 pounds, this is a hefty coffee urn. Due to its large size, transportation may be slightly more difficult.
Furthermore, the handles on the sides of the urn for transportation are fairly narrow, leaving you with very little room to grip on to. This may increase the chance of slipping, especially if the handles are damp from condensation.
Efficiency: 5 Stars
The ‘keep warm’ function on this model does exactly what it sets out to do. Coffee can be kept at a comfortable temperature for indeterminate amounts of time, so long as you hook it up to a reliable power source.
Other Design Features; 4 Stars
The visual gauge on the front of this urn is a nice touch and makes it easy to determine when you’ll need to make a fresh batch. Because the spigot is so near to the urn’s base, there may be some difficulties using large mugs.
Looks: 4 Stars
This model looks exactly how you’d expect a heavy-duty coffee urn to look. With a sleek stainless steel exterior and simple black attachments, it’s a suitable addition to virtually any environment or style.
3. Best Commercial Coffee Urn – Double-Faucet Homecraft CUDS45SS Double-Faucet Urn Review
This unique coffee urn features two separate spigots, allowing two different people to fill their coffee cups at the same time.
Its internal reservoir holds up to 45 cups of coffee and has a brewing time of 1 cup per minute.
Much like the SYBO model, this um also features a “keep warm option,” which is capable of keeping drinks at a comfortable temperature for hours on end. The built-in coffee filter does not require a paper filter, and the twist-to-secure lid locks heat in, while also improving transportability.
This model s shining feature is clearly the double faucets allowing for multiple cups to be filled at the same time. Both spigots are a classic push-to dispense and leave plenty of room to fit two cups without them running into each other. The spouts protrude fairly prominently from the sides and sit high enough to allow for must mugs to fit underneath.
The transportability is also significantly more user-friendly than both the SYBO and Cresimo models. With one cool-touch swinging handle on each side, this urn is much easier to carry with a solid grip. The handles themselves allow for you to wrap your entire hand around it, greatly reducing the chances of a spill.
There are very few negative reviews for this product, although one user has complained that the temperature is too high and may scorch more delicate drinks, like milk. The glass lid topper though it is visually appealing, is not very practical; even by looking through it, you will only see the top filter leaving you unable to see how much coffee is left inside.
While the internal filter is dishwasher safe, it appears to be made of hard plastic, presenting the possibility of it breaking easily. Furthermore, much like the SYBO model, this coffee um also brews very slowly; to brew the full 45 cups, it could take up to 45 minutes.
This model is an all-around solid coffee urn choice that has a few unique features. For any gathering where you need to keep the line moving quickly, this is a great option. Its dual-faucets allow for quick filling, allowing more people to get their drinks at a significantly increased speed.
Price: 4 Stars
At around $60. this coffee um is a great bang for your buck. Although it isn’t the cheapest option when compared to other models that have virtually the same features, this coffee um sports high quality for a reasonably low price.
Max Volume: 4 Stars
Although this um doesn’t hold massive amounts of liquid, its 45 cup interior holds just enough to cover a medium to a large gathering.
Transportability: 5 Stars
Compared to other entries on this list, this model is one of the easiest to transport. Fairly small and compact and with larger grips to accommodate your entire hand, this model is both easy and safe to transport from place to place.
Efficiency: 4 Stars
Although this model’s “keep warm” feature appears to be just as efficient as the SYBO model’s, it’s capacity to scald drinks shows that it may get a little too hot. If you purchase this product, be sure to only fill it with drinks that are meant to get piping hot.
Other Design Features: 4 Stars
Although the glass lid topper is a nice aesthetic touch, it has no real practical use. This model also does not include an external water gauge, making it difficult to tell when the coffee is getting low. However, the dual faucets largely make up for some of these models’ other shortcomings.
Looks: 4 Stars
Much like the other models on this list, this model sports a sleek stainless steel exterior. While the glass lid topper looks nice, it may appear to be a little out of place with the plastic and metal that makes up the rest of this urn’s components.
4. Best Party Coffee Maker – Hamilton Beach 45 Cup Coffee Urn Review
If you’re looking for a model that is good all-around, then look no further than the Hamilton Beach 45 Cup Coffee Urn. With a maximum 45 cup capacity, a 1 cup per minutes brewing speed, and a ready to serve indicator light, this is a classic coffee urn option that will fulfill most needs.
This model also has a locking lid to prevent heat loss through the top.
While it does not have full-hand grip handles like the HomeCraft, its side handles are big enough to allow for a fairly firm grip. The handles are also heat resistant to prevent burning even if the urn is brewing coffee at very high temperatures. The push-to-fill spout at the urn’s base is about as run-of-the-mill as it gets, although it may not allow enough space for larger cups.
Unfortunately, this model does not have a ‘keep warm” function, greatly reducing the length of time that it can keep coffee warm.
While the LED indicator light will tell you when your coffee is finished brewing, there is no heating option to keep the coffee warm once it is finished Because the exterior is single-layered stainless steel, it is not the most effective at retaining heat resulting in cooling within the first few hours of brewing. Furthermore, this model also has a relatively slow brewing speed, resulting in a wait time of up to 45 minutes.
While this model may not be able to retain heat for very long, it is a cost-efficient alternative for smaller gatherings that plan on going through all of the coffee fairly quickly. Out of all the party coffee makers and coffee urns for catering, this is the best!
Price: 4 Stars
This coffee urn is an all-around good buy for a reasonable price; however, it would have been nice to see at least a ‘keep warm* features, as many urns in this price range offer a heating option.
Max Volume: 4 Stars
Much like the Homecraft option, this model is best for a medium to a large-sized gathering, as it can only hold 45 cups at max capacity.
Transportability: 4 Stars
Although it does not have the same full-grip handles as the HomeCraft model, this coffee urn’s fairly large handles allow for safe transportation without the risk of spilling.
Efficiency: 3 Stars
Due to the lack of a “keep warm” function, this urn lacks the capability to keep coffee warm for long periods of time. While this may not be too big of a deal for shorter gatherings, it may become a hassle when coffee needs to be available for many hours on end.
Other Design Features: 3 Stars
While this model has the basic characteristics of a classic coffee urn. it lacks some features that would have added to its value Without a liquid level
Indicator, it is impossible to tell how much coffee is left without removing the lid and filter system. The low-set spigot may also make it difficult to fill
Looks: 4 Stars
Like many of the entries on this list, the Hamilton Beach doesn’t have anything particularly fantastic about its appearance; with a mainly stainless steel exterior and black plastic hardware, it looks fairly similar to most other coffee urns but will easily fit in at any catered function.
5. Best Coffee Urns For Catering – Proctor 60 Cup Coffee Urn Review
If you’re looking for something that is sure to impress your guests, consider this coffee that comes with a built-in chafer fuel container. Instead of heating the coffee via electricity, this um uses bottom-up manual heating via containers of chafer fuel.
The fuel container also comes with a lid allowing for the heat source to be cut off when needed. While this may add an extra step to the brewing process, the novelty of it is sure to turn heads.
With a 60 cup maximum capacity, this model can hold more coffee than some of the competitors mentioned in this list. There is an ample amount of space between the spout and the surface of the table that it is set on, creating ample room for virtually any kind of coffee mug. The handles on each side of this coffee um allow for a solid grip. However, their metal construction may increase the chances of an accidental slip.
The lid can also be removed completely, allowing for easy access to the interior and an improved ability to clean the entire unit after each use.
Out of all of the models mentioned in this list, this model is easily the most physically attractive With a completely metal exterior, elegantly curved legs, and an aesthetically pleasing lid. This coffee urn will be the centerpiece of any catering display.
With very few reviews to reference, it is difficult to ascertain what the potential downfalls of this product may be. Due to the height of the spigot, it many bo difficult to get the last few cups out of the urn’s interior.
Furthermore, it is difficult to tell whether or not this model comes with an interior filtering system; if not, the coffee would have to be brewed beforehand, severely impacting this model’s convenience. While the bottom-up heating feature is a nice aesthetic touch, it may be a hassle to babysit this unit while it is brewing or warming, as the chafer fuel source is a potential fire hazard.
While this is an attractive coffee urn, it may not be the best choice for practical use. However, if you’re looking for something pretty that is sure to catch everyone’s eye, this may be the option for you. This is the best coffee maker for large groups, and the best stainless steel coffee urn.
Price: 2 Stars
This is both the most expensive option on this list and the one that offers the least features.
Max Volume: 4 Stars
With a 60 cup maximum capacity, this is a decently sized coffee urn that can handle even larger events with ease. While the handles are a decent size, the fact that they are also made of metal could potentially lead to slipping. Furthermore, if the entire urn is hot, the metal handles will most likely heat up as well, leaving it nearly impossible to handle until it has completely cooled.
Efficiency: 2 Stars
While the chafer fuel container is a unique choice, it’s the ability to maintain heat without supervision, which is a major drawback.
Other Design Features: 2 Stars
As the ability to brew coffee is one of the major responsibilities of any good coffee urn, the fact that this urn may not contain an internal filtering system is a serious design flaw. This model is also seriously lacking in features for practical use. Such as LED light indicators, a liquid level gauge, and a ‘keep warm* option that doesn’t require close supervision.
Looks: 5 Stars
While this coffee urn may not be the most practical, it is easily the most visually appealing entry on this list. This model is sure to add a touch of elegance and sophistication to any gathering.
Buyer’s Guide – What to Look For When Shopping For A Coffee Urn
In order to buy the best coffee urn for your needs, it is imperative to know what kinds of features you will need to look for. When shopping around for coffee urns, consider the following criteria:
Max Capacity: How many people will it need to serve?
By getting an um that isn’t too small, you will be able to ensure that every guest will have plenty to drink, while an option that isn’t too large will keep you from spending unnecessary amounts of money.
Transportability: How large is it’5 Will it fit in your vehicle? What do the handles look like? If you are shopping in-store, try picking it up to see how easy or difficult it is to handle
Heating Capabilities: Does the um have a “keep warm* function or something similar Best-case scenario choose an um that will be able to keep your coffee warm for long periods of time. How long does the model claim that it can keep coffee warm if it does not have a ‘keep warm * function?
Internal Filtration System; What does the inside look like’ Does it have a built-in brewing basket’ Do you need to use a paper filter with it? Look for models that do not require paper filters, as this will save you money in the long run. and is much better for the environment
Cleaning; Is the interior easily accessible for cleaning’ Is the opening large enough to fit your hand in without too much effort? Is it dishwasher safe?
Up is the spigot from the surface that the urn will be resting on? Try to choose a model that will leave ample room for all sized coffee cups.
Of her features: What other bells and whistles does the model come with? This may include:
• A drip tray
• LED indicator lights
• An internal liquid level gauge
Once you’ve got your eyes on a specific model, look online to see if you can find any customer reviews; they may reveal pitfalls in the design that you hadn’t previously considered