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Best mugs for tea and coffee: stylish cups to add to your kitchen

Elevate your morning brew by investing in a beautiful mug. We've tracked down the best mugs on the market by consulting expert tea and coffee drinkers on the Mumsnet forums. From stylish sets to comforting cups, here are the best mugs to add to your kitchen cupboard.

By Kelly Rose Bradford | Last updated Apr 7, 2022

Best mugs

Who doesn’t envy that friend with a matching mug set for every occasion, free from chips, silly slogans and stains? If you feel embarrassed every time you offer a visitor a brew in a Toffee Crisp Easter egg mug from 2007, fear not! We’ve rounded up the best tea and coffee mugs to buy right now - from large mugs for big brews and fine China mugs for delicate sips, our curated selection will save your blushes and make every cuppa a pleasure.

If you're a big tea or coffee drinker, having the right mug is of vital importance. The wrong shape, thickness, or handle can ruin a much-wanted brew, and while we all have our own personal tastes and requirements when it comes to the perfect receptacle, we don’t think anyone will be disappointed with the options we’ve rounded up below. So stick the kettle on and have a browse.

Here are the best mugs to buy this year.

1. Best overall mug: Cornishware Iconic Stripy Mugs

Cornishware mug

Price: From £10 | Buy now from Cornishware

"Cornishware. Timeless, pretty and functional. I have the 12oz and 15oz mugs" - recommended by Mumsnet user, SilverHairedCat

Cornishware mugs are modern classics and fit perfectly into cosy, cottage-core interiors, as well as pared-back modern kitchens. The chunky design means they're comfortable to hold, and a pleasure to drink from. What’s more, the vast range of sizes (4oz through to 15oz) means you can drink your morning espresso or your bedtime Horlicks in stripy splendour. And if this bold red isn’t quite your cup of tea, there are 11 fab colours to choose from. 

Key specs

  • Size: 118ml to 443ml
  • Material: Ceramic
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

2. Best budget mug: Habitat Mix it up Set of 2 Mugs

Habitat mugs

Price: £8 (for two) | Buy now from Habitat

For stylish sips on a budget, these colourful mugs from Habitat are just the ticket. Featuring bright mid-century designs, each mug is a satisfying size for tea and long coffees and is dishwasher- and microwave-safe. At just £4 a mug, it's a cheap way to add a pop of colour to your breakfast table or to your Zoom call backdrop.

Key specs

  • Size: 397ml
  • Material: Ceramic
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

3. Best mug set: Denby Imperial Tea and Coffee Mugs Set of Two

Denby mugs

Price: £26 (set of two) | Buy now from Amazon

"Denby. I've had mine for 15 years and no chips. Pricey but worth it" - tried and tested by Mumsnet user, HamCob

With a 330ml capacity, these elegant, hand-crafted mugs from Denby are a great size for both tea and coffee. Beautifully glazed, they are microwave -, oven- and even freezer-safe, and match with other items in Denby’s extensive range. They're lovely investment mugs from a heritage brand and come with a reassuring 10-year guarantee, too. 

Key specs

  • Size: 300ml
  • Material: Stoneware
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

4. Best colourful mug: Le Creuset Rainbow Coffee Mugs Set of 6

Le Creuset mug set

Price: £99 (set of six) | Buy now from Amazon

"I think you can't go wrong with Le Creuset" - recommended by Mumsnet user, IDidntFloatUpTheLaganInABubble

You can't go wrong with a bit of Le Creuset in the kitchen, and this 6-pack of rainbow stoneware mugs is no exception. They will make a cheerful addition to any home, and the cool colourways are just fab. They're particularly good if you have a big family and want to allocate everyone their own colour cup. They are microwave- and dishwasher-safe, and can withstand temperatures up to 260°C. They come in giftbox with a 10-year guarantee, too. They'd make a lovely wedding or new home gift.

Key specs

  • Size: 350ml
  • Material: Stoneware
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

5. Best cool mug: David Mellor British Standard mugs

David Mellor mug

Price: £13 | Buy now from David Mellor

"I love my David Mellor British Standard mugs" - tried and tested by Mumnset user, Time2Move

These funky mugs are based on the 1950s British Colour Council’s Standard Colours, and there are nine colourways to choose from. They are microwave- and dishwasher-safe, and made from fine bone china. They look great as a mix and match set, or as a colour co-ordinated collection. They have a lovely shape, and hold a respectable 330ml of liquid gold. 

Key specs

  • Size: 330ml
  • Material: Bone china
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

6. Best novelty mug: Owl, Squirrel,Chicken and Goose Set

Porcelain animal mugs

Price: £22 (set of four) | Buy now from Amazon

Novelty does not have to mean naff, as this fun set of animal-themed mugs proves. They come gift boxed, and would make a nice pressie for any wildlife fans in your life, as well as being a sweet set for your own kitchen. The four mugs are a good size for both tea and coffee, and are made from porcelain. They are microwave- and dishwasher-safe, and are great for everyday use. 

Key specs

  • Size: 370ml
  • Material: Porcelain
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

7. Best porcelain mug: Royal Doulton Pacific Large Mugs Set of 6

Royal Doulton mug set

Price: £49 | Buy now from Amazon

"I love the Royal Doulton Pacific range. Lovely size and a mix of complementary patterns" - recommended by Mumsnet user, Vintagegoth

This gorgeous six-mug set from Royal Doulton would look great in any kitchen, and the different, but complementary designs on each one means family members can each have their ‘own’ cup. There are lots of other items in the Pacific range to match, too, if you want to build up a collection. Holding 450ml, they are a very generous size, and are both microwave- and dishwasher-safe. 

Key specs

  • Size: 450ml
  • Material: Porcelain
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

8. Best mug to keep coffee hot: Ember Temperature Control Mug

Ember mug

Price: £149 | Buy now from Amazon

Who knew mugs could be so smart? While this is a great gift for the person who has everything, it would also be a brilliant present to yourself, too. So what does it do? Well, it’s a temperature control Smart Mug that you can manage via an app. It keeps your drink hot for up to 80 minutes when fully charged, or all day if you leave it sitting on the charging coaster. You can choose the temp you want your drink to stay at from (from 50°C – 62.5°C).  The only downside to this amazing piece of kit (if we really had to find one) is that you have to wash it by hand. 

Key specs

  • Size: 414ml
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Dishwasher safe: No
  • Microwave safe: No

9. Best stylish mug: Sass & Belle Mojave Mugs

Sass and Belle Mojave mug

Price: £9 | Buy now from Amazon

"I like the Mojave glazed mugs from Sass and Belle. You can get them in different colours" - recommended by Mumsnet user, Fivemoreminutes1

These Sass & Belle glazed mugs are available in a few colourways and have a lovely rustic feel to them - you can totally imagine them lining the shelves of a potters workshop, having just been glazed. The dipped, ombre effect is mesmerising to look at, and the blue finish has quite a seasidey feel to it. A good size, and a chunky design - this would be great for hot savoury drinks, too. It can be bunged in the dishwasher and popped in the microwave too. 

Key specs

  • Size: 360ml
  • Material: Stoneware
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

10. Best glass coffee mug: Navaris Set of 4 Doubled-Walled Glass Mugs

Glass mugs

Price: £25 (set of four) | Buy now from Amazon

This set of four double-walled glass mugs are ideal for both hot and cold drinks, and just the thing for your morning coffee. The double-walled design means they keep hot drinks hot, and cold beverages and desserts cold without burning or chilling your hands. The double wall also gives a stylish look to your drinks, making them appear to be floating. They're really good for ice cream and chilled desserts, too.  

Key specs

  • Size: 450ml
  • Material: Hand blown glass
  • Dishwasher safe: No
  • Microwave safe: No

11. Best large mug: WM Bartleet & Sons Pint Mug

Bartleet & Sons mug

Price: £10 | Buy now from Amazon

"I've got four of these, they fill to almost a pint and they're nice and solid, dishwasher proof" - tried and tested by Mumsnet user, SpoonBlender

This mug isn't going to win any beauty prizes but it's worth its weight in gold if you like a mega brew as it holds a whopping pint of tea or coffee. It has a good sturdy design too - no one wants a flimsy handle when you’ve got that much hot tea sloshing about! It's also brilliant as a soup mug. It's microwave- and dishwasher-safe and other colours are available.

Key specs

  • Size: 1 pint (568ml)
  • Material: Porcelain
  • Dishwasher safe: Yes
  • Microwave safe: Yes

What kind of mugs keep coffee hot?

You can get insulated and travel mugs that will keep your drinks hot on the go, but for home use, ceramic and glass mugs tend to keep your tea and coffee the hottest for longest. If you regularly let your drink go cold though, make sure your chosen mug is microwave proof so that you can warm it up in a flash.

What makes a good mug? 

Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to choosing the ‘right’ mug, but basing your decision on what you tend to drink, whether your mug set will be used by the kids, or kept solely for adults and visitors, and whether or not you have a dishwasher will probably influence your decision. In general terms, look out for a mug that is comfortable to hold that features a handle you can easily get your fingers in and out of. Size definitely matters when it comes to mugs and cups too - there’s no point in choosing one just for its looks if it only holds a thimbleful of your preferred hot beverage.

Do you need a different mug for tea and coffee?

Having different mugs for tea and coffee really comes down to your own taste - if you drink tiny espressos, then you're probably going to want a small coffee cup, but if a giant mug of builders’ tea is your brew of choice, a large, chunky mug will be your go-to. If you use a coffee machine, figure out the maximum size of cup that'll fit in/under the device before making a purchase.   

What’s the best mug to buy in the UK?  

There are lots of really good mugs on the market and some really lovely designs, but we picked the Le Creuset Rainbow Coffee Mug Set as our best overall pick as it’s from a trusted name, and comes as a bright six-pack, which should cater for most families, or someone just setting up a home. The colourful rainbow mugs will likely lift your spirits as you sip a morning brew on a dark, dreary day. 

How we chose our recommendations

Because we know that there’s nothing like a real recommendation from a real parent, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which tea and coffee mugs and cups Mumsnet users had bought. We checked out the types they recommended for being up to the job, nice to look at, a good size, and well-priced. We then did some research across the wider web, looking at which tea and coffee mugs and cups had won accolades or been featured in ‘best buy’ lists across websites and print media, and what customer reviews said about them.

Having collated all that information, we picked the top tea and coffee mugs and cups we thought would make the best buys.

Why you should trust us

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