Nesco CU-30 30-Cup Stainless Steel Coffee Urn Review



The first time I ever saw or even heard of a Nesco brand coffee urn was a couple years ago at a trade expo.

It was being demonstrated by a competent rep so I put my critical hat on to see where the potential pitfalls lie in this machine.

I have to say the rep did a good demonstration and I was pretty pushed to find many negative points with this particular urn. There are always a few of course but on the whole I was impressed.

This is why:



  • It has a 30-cup capacity for 5.7 ounce coffee cups. Now, that’s a small cup, but it’s perfect for clients.
  • The entire urn brews in 30-45 minutes. That’s a minute and a half, tops, per cup.
  • The lid locks and the handles stay cool; both of which are helpful when you’re running around.
  • The entire machine is made of steel and it’s double insulated. So it heats up fast and stays hot even when it’s unplugged.
  • The indicator light is green, like GO, so it’s easy to know when it’s ready to serve.


The Positives

  • The empty urn is light. It’s less than 8 pounds before it’s filled with water. And even afterwards, it’s not bulky enough to feel awkward.
  • The machine is so quiet during the brewing cycle that it’s easy to forget it’s running.
  • It takes 950 watts in brewing mode, but only 85 watts of power in warming mode. So it’s very economical to use.

There are Only a Few Cons

  • Sometimes parents bring their kids to their appointments or events. Most are pretty good, but every so often a monster appears. The last thing anyone wants is to see a kid get hurt. The outside of this urn is warm when in use, but it’s not scalding. So it’s safe enough for homes or businesses that have kids running around. It’s important to note, however, that the lid isn’t double walled. So if anyone touches that when the machine’s in use, they will get hurt.
  • The power cord isn’t detachable, so it can be difficult to clean at work.
  • The glass water gauge doesn’t show all the way down, so there’s still a good few cups left in the machine when it looks empty. This isn’t a big deal once you get used to it, but it’s strange at first.
  • The machine rattles in warming mode. It’s just the water cycling, but it can be annoying. Usually I’ll just wheel out the coffee cart into the hall if it bothers a client. But that can be tough to do at home.
  • The machine resets itself for safety concerns, which is positive. However, the manual reset switch is complicated to locate (you need to read the instructions since it’s not really a switch and it’s in a weird spot), and it can be a messy, complicated chore to reset.


nec2Overall, it’s a great urn for a busy office or small events. It’s attractive, makes excellent hot coffee that keeps its temperature, and the price is less than you’d expect for the size and capacity of the machine.

It seems a fairly problem free coffee urn. Personally, I don’t think it’s that stylish but its not overly ugly either.

Given this is a straightforward, no-nonsense coffee urn we give it a solid 4 star rating

4 / 5 stars     

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