How To Clean Cuisinart Coffee Machine? 7 Easy Steps

The average lifespan of coffee makers varies from brand to brand. Your Cuisinart coffee machine, for example, should last about two to five years. However, the lifespan of a coffee maker also largely depends on how well you maintain and clean the device. If you want to prolong the lifespan of your Cuisinart coffee machine, you can start by learning how to clean it.

Cleaning a Cuisinart coffee machine might seem like a hassle, but it’s not. Everything you need is available in the kitchen, and the entire process only takes seven steps.

This article will discuss these seven steps. But before we get into the meat of the topic, you might want to start by preparing the necessary materials and equipment for this task.

What Do You Need To Clean Your Cuisinart Coffee Machine?

As stated earlier, everything you need should be found in your kitchen, meaning you don’t have to go out of your way to buy the materials from your nearby store.

Here’s a closer look at what you’ll need to clean the Cuisinart coffee machine:

  • Sponge
  • Water
  • Vinegar
  • Cloth
  • Soap/detergent
  • Container
  • Dishwashing liquid

Take note that this would only apply if you plan on following the steps outlined in this article. Now, without further ado, let’s proceed to the first step of the cleaning process.

Step #1: Empty The Cuisinart Coffee Machine

First off, you need to discard the disposable objects in the machine and other parts that may get in the way of the cleaning process. Typically, you’ll end up taking away the following items:

  • Paper filter
  • Brew basket
  • Coffee grounds

Make sure you search every nook and cranny for coffee grounds, as they tend to get stuck in the most unexpected places. You should also make sure to remove the paper filter, regardless of whether it’s disposable or permanent. If it’s the former, you can throw it out of the bin, but if it’s the latter, you will need to clean it separately in one of the succeeding steps.

Step #2: Put Together A Water-Vinegar Mixture

Once the Cuisinart is neatly organized and is free from coffee grounds, it’s time to put together the solution that you’ll be using to clean the interior of the coffee machine.

While there are several options on what that solution may be, a water-vinegar mixture is arguably the best cleaning solution, and for the following reasons:

  1. Vinegar is highly affordable, costing only a few dollars a gallon
  2. Vinegar works on most surfaces and does not cause any complications
  3. Vinegar is likely to be already available in your kitchen

For optimal results, you might want to use distilled white vinegar.

Since you’ll be mixing the two liquids, you need to decide on the ratio. Experts suggest mixing one part water and one part vinegar, so that’s a ratio of 1:1 or 50/50.

However, if the Cuisinart coffee machine is particularly greasy, you might want to increase the volume of vinegar. Also, you must remember that certain ingredients may either decrease the mixture’s cleaning efficacy or damage the coffee machine’s surface. For that reason, it’s advisable to only add water to the vinegar, unless, of course, you’re an expert at this task.

Once you have the mixture, pour it into the reservoir of the coffee machine. For your information, the reservoir in a coffee machine is where you store the water when brewing coffee.

Step #3: Run The Machine Through A Cycle

With the water-vinegar mixture placed on the reservoir, the next step is to run the machine through a cycle. You can do this by pressing specific buttons on the device.

If your Cuisinart coffee machine has a clean function, use this function for optimal results. If it doesn’t, you can settle for the brew function. Use it as if you’re brewing a pot of coffee.

Step #4: Allow The Solution To Sit For A Few Minutes

After several minutes, the brewing or cleaning function should now stop. When that happens, you should wait for an additional 15 to 30 minutes for the mixture to further clean the interior.

Afterward, you can open the machine and throw away the mixture as it likely already contains oils that were once in the Cuisinart coffee machine.

Step #5: Rinse The Machine With Fresh Water

Since the machine likely has an unpleasant odor due to the vinegar, it’s advisable to rinse the device with fresh water. To do this, simply pour water into the reservoir, much like what you did with the mixture in the second step. Next, press the cleaning or brewing button again.

Once the cycle finishes, replace the water and run it through a cycle again for thorough rinsing. There should no longer be a vinegar smell and taste in the machine with two cycles.

After the two cycles, you can also manually rinse the machine through your faucet.

Step #6: Wipe The Surface With A Cloth

The coffee machine should be extremely wet at the moment. In that case, prepare soapy water and a clean cloth. Dip the clean cloth into the soapy water and wipe down the exterior surface of the machine. Make sure you wipe the outer and inner lid as well as the brewing area as they’re the most likely to contain coffee grounds residue.

Next, get a new clean cloth and dampen it in water. Use this cloth to wipe away any soap residue from what you did earlier. With this, the coffee machine itself should be clean.

However, that’s not necessarily the same with the removable parts.

Step #7: Disassemble And Clean Any Removable Parts

The interior and exterior of the coffee machine should be clean after the previous six steps, but there’s a good chance the removable parts still have some residue left.

In that regard, the next step is to disassemble the machine and clean each part individually. Here’s how you can do this:

  1. Get a container and fill it with hot water
  2. Add a dishwashing liquid, ideally, one that specializes in removing oil residue
  3. Discard the removable parts from the machine and place them in the container
  4. Use a sponge or soft cloth to remove any residue from each part
  5. Rinse the removable parts and wait for them to dry

With this, the entirety of the Cuisinart coffee machine should be clean, so the only step left is to reassemble the coffee maker.

Alternatives To Water-Vinegar Solution

If you’d rather not use vinegar, or if you’re out of this cleaning agent, you can instead use some alternatives that may have a similar cleaning efficacy. Examples of such solutions include:

Lemon Juice

Lemon juice is known as a natural bleaching agent. Although it’s less effective than chlorine bleach, it should be enough to deal with oily residue commonly found in coffee machines.

To create a lemon juice cleaning solution, add one cup of bottled or fresh lemon juice to one cup of water. Again, you can increase its volume if the coffee machine is greasier than usual.

Baking Soda

Baking soda is yet again a rather effective cleaning agent as it can dissolve organic compounds like dirt and grease. It’s also not destructive to surfaces, so it’s fairly safe for coffee machines.

To create a baking soda cleaning solution, add ¼ cup of baking soda to the machine’s water reservoir and add the hot water. Make sure you do it in this order.


Borax, also known as sodium borate, is a popular cleaning agent with the appearance of a powdery white substance. People often use it as a laundry detergent, but it can also be an effective cleaning agent for your coffee maker.

To create a borax cleaning solution, add two tablespoons of the cleaning agent to the reservoir and fill it with hot water.

Since these three agents are available in most kitchens, you can clean the Cuisinart coffee machine anytime, which begs the question,” How often should you clean the machine?”

How Often Should You Clean Your Cuisinart Coffee Machine?

Usually, a coffee maker of any brand requires a thorough cleaning session every three to six months, and the same goes for Cuisinart coffee machines.

There should be a self-clean light in the device, which will start flashing after around three months. However, you can clean the machine earlier than expected if you see these signs:

  • The coffee tastes odd
  • It’s taking longer to brew a pot of coffee
  • The coffee maker is not brewing but still makes noises
  • The coffee maker is louder than usual

Wrapping Up

While it’s true that cleaning a Cuisinart coffee machine is pretty easy, especially now that you have this guide, that doesn’t mean you can afford to neglect the machine.

Make sure you still take steps to maintain the machine properly. For example, you should always clean the removable parts of the device after every use. By doing so, you’re effectively prolonging the lifespan of your machine by months or even years