In a Nutshell:

The Breville Bambino Plus espresso machine is an affordable semi-automatic, functional, attractive, and user-friendly. It’s ideal for rookie espresso brewers, seasoned pros, and smaller households with limited counter space.

Brew Quality
Customization options
Ease of Use

Overall Rating



  • Affordable price
  • Quick three-second warm uptime
  • Automatic steam wand
  • Attractive stainless steel design
  • Large 64-oz water reservoir


  • Smaller drip tray, requires frequent cleaning
  • No hot water dispenser
  • Need to buy separate grinder
  • Slight learning curve
  • Limited customization
  • May not produce professional-grade shots
Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Machine

Recommended For: Rookie espresso brewers, seasoned pros, and smaller households with limited counter space.

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Do you have a deep love for coffee? Would you like to learn how to pull your espresso shots instead of waiting in line at the cafe every day?

If so, then a semi-automatic espresso machine might be your new best friend. But where to start with finding a reliable machine?

Our Breville Bambino Plus review breaks down the features of a high-quality, affordable model. Let’s get started!

Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Machine Design Overview

Breville is an Australian brand that has made a global name for itself, designing high-tech, user-friendly espresso machines.

The Bambino Plus is one of their most popular semi-automatics, and for a good reason. Its sleek stainless steel exterior and compact size make it a suitable choice for any household.

And it’s a perfect starting point for beginner brewsters who want to learn the art of espresso. With its precise dosing, meticulous preinfusion, and automatic milk frothing, you have everything you need to pull a full-bodied shot with room for error.

The Bambino Plus dimensions are 7.7″ x 12.6″ x 12.2″. This sizing makes it easy to slide it into a narrow space on your countertop or underneath a cabinet without any hassle.

While this smaller size is easier to maneuver, it does pose a minor drawback. A compact machine means compact parts and more mess to clean up.

Breville Bambino Plus reviews mention the steam wand splashing hot water on the surrounding area while in purge mode, so be ready with your dishrag to mop up after each use.

The drip tray is smaller too, and other Breville Bambino reviews say that you’ll need to empty it frequently.

Of course, these are very tiny details that do not affect the overall quality of the Bambino’s performance. And to be honest, any espresso machine is going to require some light cleaning.

What can’t be ignored is the price. At under $500, this model is a steal compared to some other high-end semi-automatics.

To be fair, you will have to purchase a grinder and scale separately, and this can cost anywhere from $100 and up if you want a quality grinder.

But if you’re passionate about learning espresso, then it’s worth it. Once you concoct your perfect brew, there’s no going back to drip coffee.

Let’s take a closer look at the Bambino’s features to see how it operates and if it’s truly worth the hype.

Bambino Espresso Machine Features

The Breville Bambino Plus espresso machine isn’t packed with fancy features, making the learning curve tolerable.

You get the essentials, and that’s all you need to make third-wave specialty coffee from the comfort of home.

64-oz Water Tank

Nothing screams convenience like a hefty 64-oz water tank. It is the perfect size for medium to large households, ensuring that refills won’t take over your life (unless you love drinking espresso).

The reservoir is also removable, which makes refills and cleaning much easier instead of maneuvering around with a water pitcher.

Milk Frothing System

One of the highlight features of the Breville Bambino espresso machine is its highly versatile milk frothing system.

A ThermoJet steam wand is powerful enough to create a rich, silky milk foam with three heat settings and three milk textures to choose from.

Bear in mind that this is a hands-free operation, so if you aren’t picky about your foam, then you’ll love the convenience of brewing decent milk coffee drinks at home.

Simply pour your desired amount of milk into the included carafe, select your temperature and texture settings, then push the start button, and watch the magic happen.

On the other hand, if you want to learn how to whip up your froth, you may consider a semi-automatic with a manual system.

Brewing Capabilities

Semi-automatics like the Breville Espresso Machine Bambino give coffee aficionados the chance to pull their shots with some automatic help to ease the learning curve.

Manual brewing is preferred because you can adjust your espresso with unlimited freedom to finetune your preferences.

Breville made sure to outfit the Bambino with their innovative brewing tech so that you can expect a full-bodied, flavorful drink every time.

ThermoJet heating works lightning fast, blessing the Bambino Plus with one of the fastest warm-up times on the market—only three seconds, and you’re ready to brew!

You can dose 19 grams of freshly ground coffee at a time, tamped tightly into a commercial-grade 54mm portafilter.

A meticulous preinfusion is then performed, with water pressure gradually increased to expand the grinds for a more even extraction.

This results in a full-bodied coffee, with every trace of aromas and flavors lifted from the grounds.

A 15-bar Italian pump outputs the standard 9 bars of pressure for optimal results. You can choose between 1-cup or 2-cup double-wall pressurized baskets for your espresso.

Unfortunately, Breville didn’t include non-pressurized baskets, which gives seasoned users more control over the brewing process.

Breville The Bambino Plus Accessories

We are happy to report that Breville is quite generous when it comes to accessories. While you do need to purchase a grinder, you won’t have to worry about spending extra on multiple tools and cleaning supplies.

This is what comes with Breville the Bambino Plus Espresso Machine:

  • 54mm Tamper
  • The Razor™ Precision Dosing Tool
  • 16 fl. oz / 480ml Stainless Steel Milk Jug
  • 1 & 2 Cup Dual Wall Filter Baskets
  • Cleaning Tool
  • Cleaning Disc

Bambino Plus Espresso Machine Setup & Operation

Setting up the Bambino Plus for first-time use isn’t a complicated or lengthy process. Here’s a quick step-by-step breakdown.

1. Clean the Bambino Plus Parts Thoroughly

Use warm water and dish soap to gently wash the water tank, drip tray, drip tray grid, filter baskets, portafilter, and milk jug.

2. Fill the Water Tank

Use filtered or distilled water for brewing. It reduces calcium build-up and enhances the aromas and flavors of your espresso. Make sure not to exceed the max fill line.

If the water is too low, the machine will alert you when a refill is needed.

3. Power Up the BES500bss

Plug the power cord into the nearest outlet, and the 1-Cup button will illuminate. Hit the 1-Cup button to begin the first use cycle.

The first use cycle flushes the entire machine and preps the heating element.

4. Ready to Brew

When the 1-Cup, 2-Cup, and Steam buttons flash, that indicates that all parts have been assembled correctly and you’re ready to pull a delicious shot of espresso within minutes.

Breville Espresso Machine Bambino Cleaning Process

With regular light maintenance, keeping the Breville BES500bss Bambino Plus espresso machine in tip-top shape isn’t a huge chore.

Be sure to empty the drip tray regularly, clean out the portafilter, and wipe down the stainless steel housing after each use.

Thankfully, the steam wand purges itself thoroughly, so all you have to do is wipe the exterior of the wand.

All of these small actions take a few minutes tops. You will need to descale the machine periodically, but this should take no more than 30 minutes. The machine will alert you when it’s time to descale.

After 200 extractions, the 1-Cup and 2-Cup buttons will flash, indicating that the brew head needs to be flushed.

To do this, insert one of the included cleaning discs into the portafilter and cover this with a cleaning tablet. Lock the portafilter into place, make sure the drip tray is empty, and fill the water tank to the max line.

After placing a cup underneath the dispenser, hold down the 1-Cup and 2-Cup button for five seconds, and the machine will begin the cleaning cycle automatically.

Bambino Plus Pros vs. Cons


  • Affordable
  • Suitable for beginners to learn espresso
  • Three-second warm-up time
  • Automatic steam wand
  • Stainless Steel
  • Large 64-oz reservoir


  • Smaller drip tray that needs frequent cleaning
  • No hot water dispenser
  • Need to buy grinder separately
  • Slight learning curve

The Breville Espresso Bambino Plus is an attractive semi-automatic that gives any kitchen counter those European cafe vibes.

Stainless steel casing, a slim design, and a small footprint make the Espresso Bambino Plus a welcome addition to any home, no matter the amount of space you have.

But the real show is the brewing process, and Breville did a fantastic job with this model. You get the innovative, no-frills technology that this brand is known for.

Functions such as the automatic milk wand with auto purge make it easy to create a tasty froth without manually cleaning dried milk from the pipes.

The ThermoJet heats the machine in three seconds, so there’s no waiting around when you’re on the go.

The extraction process is gradual and carefully implemented—from the dosing to the preinfusion—to ensure the flavors and aromas of the coffee are cafe-worthy.

Plus, the Bambino Espresso Breville is user-friendly, making this a great option for beginners and seasoned espresso makers alike.

While it might take a few tries to get your groove down, the Bambino has the perfect mix of manual and automatic settings to blunder a bit but still pull a great-tasting shot.

We recommend the Breville The Bambino stainless steel espresso maker for…

  • People interested in learning how to brew espresso manually
  • Latte art newbies who want an easy machine to practice with
  • Seasoned espresso makers who want a convenient, affordable semi-automatic
  • Small households or apartments with limited counter space

Breville Bambino Espresso Machine Warranty

Breville offers a 2-year limited warranty on the Breville BES500 Bambino Plus espresso machine. You can read the fine print here.

Comparable Products

You might want to check out these other espresso machines featured in the Breville Bambino line. Each one provides a similar performance with slightly varying features. Let’s see how they stack up!

Breville The Bambino Espresso Machine vs. Breville BES500 Bambino Plus

Breville Bambino Espresso Machine

Recommended For: Coffee lovers who have very limited counter space and want to brew their own espresso-based drinks.

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Before the Bambino Plus, there was the Breville Bambino espresso maker setting the standard for compact, functional brewing.

Both models look similar, especially with their handsome stainless steel housing, but the original Bambino is a little bit smaller than the Plus.

One feature we prefer on the Bambino espresso maker is the drip tray, which is broader and sturdier than the drip tray on the Breville Bambino Plus.

Another difference is that the original has a hot water dispenser, while the Bambino Plus does not. It is a small difference, but it might mean something big for Americano lovers.

The ThermoJet setup is utilized by both models so that you can expect similar brewing results. The milk froth system is where coffee lovers need to think long and hard about their preferences.

The Breville Bambino machine is more hands-on, requiring the user to know how to steam milk with skill. You’ll need to learn how to texture the milk, how to judge the amount of air allowance and mix, and, finally, when the milk temperature is just right.

However, the Bambino Plus espresso machine has automatic texture and temperature settings, so just push the button, and it takes care of the rest.

Breville Bambino Plus Espresso Maker vs. Breville Bambino Pro Espresso Machine

The Breville Bambino Pro is a versatile model that targets the flaws of the Plus. For example, both pressurized and non-pressurized baskets are included to give the brewer more control over the extraction.

There’s also the option to steam milk manually or automatically, making it great for rookies and bonafide latte artists.

The only issue? The Bambino Pro has been discontinued.

Breville Bambino Plus Review Conclusion

The Breville Bambino Plus stainless steel espresso maker is the perfect sidekick for coffee lovers who want to pull their shots but enjoy some automatic convenience for easy mornings.

To conclude this Breville Bambino Plus review, this is an affordable semi-automatic with fewer bells and whistles, but it’s reliable and functional. We recommend this for novices, seasoned brewers, and smaller households.

References & Resources:

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