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Do you have a price in mind—but aren't quite sure what to buy that special someone this holiday season? The experts at Consumer Reports put together a series of gift guides that are grouped by price. Here, we focus on some of our top-rated home products for under $100.
Go to Consumer Reports' 2019 Holiday Gift Guide for updates on deals, expert product reviews, insider tips on shopping, and much more.
Cuisinart PerfecTemp 14 Cup Programmable DCC-3200
CR’s take: This Cuisinart drip coffee maker with a stainless steel finish and glass carafe earns an Excellent rating for brew performance. It’s programmable and features a water filter, a permanent coffee filter, a cleaning mode, a cleaning indicator, and auto-shutoff. The machine also allows you to adjust the strength of your brew. For the money, this model offers style and features that are hard to beat.
For more options: Best Drip Coffee Makers From Consumer Reports' Tests
CR’s take: The Cuisinart SS-5 combines a relatively low price with relatively strong performance in our tests. With features like a built-in water filter and a removable water reservoir, this single-serve model rates Excellent for convenience. It delivers both the first cup of coffee and subsequent cups pretty quickly. This machine requires K-Cup packs and has some flexibility in adjusting brew strength.
For more options: Best Pod Coffee Makers From Consumer Reports' Tests
Cuisinart Automatic Cold Brew Coffeemaker DCB-10
CR’s take: In our evaluation of cold brew machines, the Cuisinart Automatic Cold Brew Coffeemaker DCB-10 performed better than automatic models that cost nearly twice as much. It does well across all our tests, and it's the only model to receive a Very Good rating for ease of cleaning. Most parts are dishwasher-safe, unlike the other models in its class. This Cuisinart comes with a glass carafe (not plastic, like some competing models) and brews in 25 to 45 minutes.
For more options: Best Cold Brew Coffee Makers of 2019
Oxo Brew Conical Burr Coffee Grinder
CR’s take: The Oxo Brew Conical Burr Coffee Grinder is a fantastic grinder and one of the more affordable models that does well in our tests. It receives strong scores in our grind performance tests, making it a good choice for any brew method you want to use. It also earns a Very Good rating for convenience, thanks to its clearly marked and easy-to-use controls. Our testers find it extremely easy to clean, too, because it has a removable hopper. It features 15 grind settings, a 12-ounce bean hopper (one of the largest), an auto-stop feature, and a timer.
For more options: Best and Worst Burr Coffee Grinders
CR’s take: A CR Best Buy, the GoWise GW22731 has measured capacity of 4.9 quarts. Its touch buttons and programmed settings are among the easiest to see and use, earning an Excellent rating in our assessment. And this is one of the quietest air fryers we tested. The exterior’s crevices and the basket’s nooks and crannies take some effort to clean, however. It comes with a one-year warranty.
For more options: Best Air Fryers of the Year
Instant Pot DUO60 7-in-1 6 Quart
CR’s take: The Instant Pot Duo is half the price of some of its competition, and performs similarly to its more expensive sibling, the Instant Pot Max. It rates Excellent for pressure cooking and can hold its own against a Crock-Pot in the slow-cooking department, too, though it may require more time. It also takes up less space than even the smallest slow cookers from our ratings.
For more options: Best Multi-Cookers of 2019
Hamilton Beach Temp Tracker 33866 6 Qt.
CR's take: This 6-quart Hamilton Beach slow cooker is one of the least expensive of the programmable models we tested—and it beat out Crock-Pot, long synonymous with slow cookers, in our tests. The Hamilton Beach also earns an Excellent rating in our high-setting tests, telling you it’s one of the fastest in the category. Program this cooker for up to 24 hours, and the auto-warm option lasts for 24 hours, too. The owner’s manual includes tips on using the temperature probe and hold-temp mode to cook meat and fish using the sous vide method (placing food in a sealed bag and slowly cooking in a warm bath of water).
For more options: Best Slow Cookers of 2019
Swiss Diamond Nonstick #6424
CR's take: This nonstick, cast-aluminum frying pan earns a CR recommendation for its even cooking ability, sturdy construction, and durable surface. Its handle stayed cool to the touch during cooking, and the nonstick coating stood up well to the steel wool abrasion test in CR’s labs. It comes with a lifetime warranty.
For more options: Best Frying Pans for the Way You Cook
Victoria Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet
CR’s take: The Victoria is one of the lowest-priced pans we test, but it browns and sears just as well as some higher-priced ones, earning top scores on both tests. But it was only so-so in our cornbread test, and scores a Fair on our heating evenness test. However, at 6.9 pounds, it’s lighter than many other of the pans in our tests.
For more options: Best Cast Iron Frying Pans From Consumer Reports' Tests
Tasty Titanium Reinforced Ceramic Nonstick (Walmart exclusive)
CR’s take: Impressive performance and an appealing price make this set a CR Best Buy. In fact, the Tasty 11-piece nonstick is among the least expensive we tested and the set is one of the few that earns an Excellent in our crucial cooking evenness test. The set, from the arm of Buzzfeed that generates those wildly popular food videos, is sold exclusively at Walmart. A 6-quart Dutch oven and an 11-inch griddle pan are included—a nice surprise, given the relatively low price. But the makers also include a recipe booklet as one of the 11 pieces, and it's worth noting that the handles can get hot to the touch and aren’t very sturdy.
For more options: Best Cookware Sets of 2019
Ayesha Curry Covered Dutch Oven
CR’s take: Ayesha Curry hosts ABC’s “Family Food Fight,” a culinary competition among families. You’ll see her cookware sets in our ratings, and the 6-quart Ayesha Curry Dutch oven is among the easiest to clean, garnering an Excellent rating in that test. Weighing in at 15 pounds, this Dutch oven is the heaviest of the group we tested, while the cooking surface measures 7 inches in diameter. (Read more about cookware from Ayesha Curry and Rachael Ray.)
For more options: Best Dutch Ovens From Consumer Reports' Tests
CR’s take: Calphalon’s scaled-down waffle maker is ideal for small households. It will reliably turn out waffles, but you won't be able to feed an army efficiently. The Calphalon CKCLWF1 earns a Very Good rating for even browning but loses some points in our test for color range. That means there's less variation between the dark and light settings; waffles cooked on the light setting still come out pretty brown. A countdown timer indicates how much cooking time remains, and an alarm will sound once your waffles are ready so you can tend to other tasks while making breakfast. This model aces our assessment for ease of use, too. It stays cool on the outside throughout the cooking process, has a wraparound moat to collect excess batter for easy cleanup, and can be stored on its side to save space.
For more options: Best Waffle Makers From Consumer Reports' Tests
Black+Decker 8-Slice Digital Extra WideTO3290XSD
CR's take: The Black+Decker 8-Slice Digital Extra Wide TO3290XSD snags a Very Good rating in our reheating test, evenly reheating a single serving of lasagna in 15 minutes. In other words, it won't take you long to get leftovers on the table. This 1,500-watt toaster oven has a temperature range of 150° F to 450° F, and there are three rack positions. The additional functions are what you'd expect—reheat, bake, and broil—and there are settings for bagels and pizza.
For more options: Best Toaster Ovens From Consumer Reports' Tests
Breville Control Grip BSB510XL
CR's take: In our tests, the Breville Control Grip BSB510XL bested competing models by a sizable margin, doing an excellent job at blending frozen fruit and yogurt into smoothies, and puréeing soups. It comes with a chopper and whisk attachment as well as a separate beaker.
For more options, check our blender ratings and buying guide.
Hamilton Beach 63326
CR's take: The Hamilton Beach 63326 stand mixer is a top performer when it comes to whipping and mixing, and earns a Very Good rating for kneading both bread and cookie dough. The six-speed mixer comes with a 4-quart stainless steel bowl, flat beater, a dough hook, and wire whisk. Added bonus? At under a hundred bucks, it's also one of the cheapest models in our tests, making it a smart choice for the discerning baker on your list.
For more options: Best Stand Mixers From Consumer Reports' Tests
Dirt Devil Power Stick SD12530
CR’s take: The well-priced slim Dirt Devil Power Stick SD12530 is no slouch when it comes to cleaning carpet and bare floors, and picking up pet hair, earning an Excellent rating in all three tasks. The corded model gracefully glides along edges, picking up dust as it goes, and it operates quietly. But its emissions aren’t as clean as some of the other stick vacuums we’ve tested, something to keep in mind if anyone in your household suffers from allergies.
For more options: Best Stick Vacuums for $150 or Less
Black+Decker DustBuster CHV1410L
CR’s take: The cordless Black+Decker DustBuster picks up nearly all the debris in our bare floor and carpet tests—no small feat for a handheld vacuum. Our engineers note that it’s easy to place this model on its charger with a satisfying "click" to confirm the connection. The filter is snugly set inside the dustbin and is easy to remove and empty, which is a reason it earns an Excellent rating in our emissions test. This model doesn’t come with detachable tools but has a built-in slide-out crevice tool and a pop-out brush. It's a little noisier than the competition and makes a light whistling sound when you turn it on.
For more options: Best Handheld Vacuums of 2019
Crane Germ Defense EE-8065
CR's take: This Crane humidifier can humidify a large room, up to 650 square feet, snagging an Excellent rating in our output tests and a Very Good rating overall. It's also a super quiet model. Added bonus: The Crane is one of only a few humidifiers in our ratings with dual mist, which means it can pump out cool mist or warm.
For more options: Best Humidifiers of 2019
Hilti SFD 2-A
CR’s take: This unique drill falls in our light-duty category because of the limitations of its fixed, ¼-inch chuck. That’s not a problem, though, if you’re not drilling large holes. Plus, the Hilti SFD 2-A goes for half the price of many cordless drills with similar capabilities while still proving reasonably powerful. A built-in LED light helps illuminate your workspace, while the drill’s modest 2.2-pound weight minimizes strain and fatigue, earning it an Excellent rating for handling. One of the biggest selling points is perhaps the 20-year warranty, which goes far beyond the standard three years for cordless drills. It comes with two 2.6-amp-hour batteries, a belt clip, and a soft-sided case.
For more options: Best Cordless Drills of 2019
TP-Link Kasa Cam KC120
CR’s take: The TP-Link Kasa Cam is a terrific camera that costs far less than many of its competitors. It offers impressive video quality and even rates Excellent for response time. It does quite well in our data privacy and security tests. In addition to a rolling two days of free storage for motion-triggered video clips, the Kasa Cam features monitoring zones and voice control via Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. With a Kasa Care plan, you can get up to 30 days of cloud video storage.
For more options: Best Wireless Home Security Cameras of 2019
Ring Video Doorbell 88RG000FC100
CR’s take: If you live in a home without a hardwired doorbell, the Ring Video Doorbell is a great option because it runs on a built-in rechargeable battery. It also costs less than half the price of some competing models. However, its lower price does come with a sacrifice on video quality, where it receives a Fair rating. Despite its subpar video quality, this model does very well in our response time and Smart IQ evaluations.
As for features, it comes with voice control via Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, monitoring zones, and alert schedules to prevent alerts at certain times of day. With an optional subscription to a Ring Protect Plan, you’ll get a rolling 60 days of motion-triggered video clips.
For more options: Best Video Doorbells of 2019
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