Dishwashers have become such a common and valued appliance in the home that it can be both surprising and frustrating to learn that a new home might come without one. This is where an effective countertop dishwasher can make all of the difference.

Taking up about as much room as a modern microwave and cleaning dishes with less water than it takes to wash by hand, countertop dishwashers are efficient, quiet, and highly sought after appliances for small kitchens, finished basements, and apartment complexes.

These six countertop dishwashers showcase the very best of the growing market for a dishwasher you can hold in your hands.

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Top 6 Countertop Dishwashers

  • Clean, modern look will reduce eyesore even in the most modern of kitchens
  • Six wash cycle options gives homeowners lots of control over water usage and running time
  • Built-in rinse aid dispenser allows homeowners to use rinse-aid and come out with clean dishes every time
  • Comes with a 2-year warranty that may be extended six months after product registration

  • Six wash cycle options give great control over water usage and runtime
  • Fold-down rack makes it easy to adjust to any-sized dish
  • Quick connect feature means faster wash times
  • Includes a 12 months parts and labor warranty

  • Delay start feature offers lots of increments for overnight washing
  • Six wash cycles are efficient and easy to navigate on the LED display
  • Water supply and rinse aid warning indicator ensure flawless operation
  • Comes with a 1 year warranty

  • EZ Clean filter means quick disposal of food waste collected by cycles
  • Stainless steel interior more robust and long-lasting than most
  • Fold-down rack is accommodating to most dishes
  • Includes a 1-year parts and labor warranty

  • Seven wash programs gives great control over water consumption and cycle length
  • Child lock great for families
  • Touch controls make for easy cleaning
  • Comes with a 1-year parts and labor warranty

  • Low overall water consumption beats or matches others on our list
  • Seven wash cycles and six place setting capacity means greater control over dishes
  • High energy efficiency reduces overall energy cost
  • Includes a 1 year warranty

Sleek in design and high in features, the hOmeLabs Compact Dishwasher HME010033N is able to bring versatility to most kitchens. Using six wash settings, homeowners can more accurately control the amount of water used and the time spent on dishes. When it comes to water consumption, even the high-volume setting is able to use less than four gallons of water overall.

We also appreciate the recessed rear of the dishwasher, which aids in keeping the dishwasher flush with the wall. With six place settings easily fitting onto the racks without much adjusting, this dishwasher also holds an incredible amount given the smaller size. Aside from a fairly loud operation, there is little to complain about. The hOmeLabs Compact Dishwasher is dependable, easy to mount, relatively lightweight, and built to last.

Pros

  • Excellent design
  • Low water usage
  • High capacity
  • High versatility
  • Easy to install

Cons

  • A little loud
  • Somewhat expensive

The all-white Danby DDW621WDB is virtually indistinguishable from the competition like  the hOmeLabs Compact Dishwasher, however small aspects of internal design and volume control set it apart.

While the Danby DDW621WDB is less stylish than the hOmeLabs offering, the six place setting capacity and the adjustable rack are certainly appreciated. One of the biggest issues with countertop dishwashers is finding a way to fit the larger dishes within the unit. Few appliances on our list can accommodate large pots and pans quite like this Danby can.

We also appreciate the volume control, which remains on the lower end of the scale when it comes to countertop dishwashers. If run in one of the lighter of the six settings offered, this appliance can blend into the white noise of a nearby HVAC system. While we wish controls were easier to use, we still recommend the Danby DDW621WDB for those who need a quieter, more affordable, and more adjustable alternative to the hOmeLabs offering.

Pros

  • Affordable
  • Quiet operation
  • Lots of adjustability
  • Easy to connect
  • High capacity
  • Low water usage

Cons

  • Unintuitive controls
  • Plain/dated design

The SPT SD-225DW is a black and white countertop dishwasher that focuses on ease of use and more precise controls. It uses a simple pocket handle design and relies on a clear LED display to keep homeowners informed on the progress of their dishes. The delayed start and warning indicators are helpful for ensuring that any problems with the cycle are quickly managed.

We also appreciate the water consumption on this unit, which ties with one other appliance for the most conservative use of water. Six place settings can be quickly cleaned using little more than three gallons of water along with detergent and rinse aid, if so desired. While the power and water cord are quite long, we are a bit frustrated at the leakiness of the included quick connect adaptor. Provided you’re willing to mess with Teflon tape to get the seal correct, this countertop dishwasher should serve most homes well.

Pros

  • Low water usage
  • High capacity
  • Clear LEDs and indicators
  • Delayed start

Cons

  • A little loud
  • Leaky connection
  • Not very adjustable

Upon first glance, this Magic Chef MCSCD6W5 seems to be a carbon copy of the SPT dishwasher, but this model seems more focused on the interior design rather than that on the exterior. The stainless steel that lines the inside of this unit seems more robust than most and provided homeowners take care of this unit, there should be no issues with leaking here.

Homeowners can also look forward to no-frills maintenance using the EZ clean filter which lines the bottom of the tub and captures all of the debris from wash after wash. With delay start timers which can last up to 24 hours and smaller considerations like a fold-down cup rack, we think this countertop dishwasher presents a fair and quiet alternative to many on our list.

Pros

  • Quiet operation
  • Lots of adjustability
  • Delayed start
  • Easy maintenance

Cons

  • Heavy

Eerily reminiscent of a microwave, this BLACK+DECKER BCD6W stays in line with the company’s focus on sleek design and easy controls. This dishwasher comes with many of the same features as the other countertop dishwashers on our list, including a 6 place setting capacity and delayed start functionality. The extra wash cycle is an added bonus and ensures that homeowners can soak, rinse, wash, and dry just about any number of dishes.

The child lock is another unique feature which could be helpful for parents who may not trust their little ones in the kitchen. And while the price is certainly high for the features offered by this appliance, there is no denying that these features work well.

Pros

  • Excellent design
  • Great safety features
  • Delayed start
  • High versatility
  • Quiet operation

Cons

  • Expensive
  • High water consumption

The EdgeStar DWP62SV differentiates itself from the others not only by the all-gray design but by managing to pack in the best of many different features. It is designed for either countertop of below-cabinet use and manages to offer both a high capacity and lots of cycle control options without a major hit to energy and water consumption.

In fact, this unit is so effective at both that it stands out as one of the most efficient overall. Plus, the lighter design is great for moving this unit in and out of storage. Easy LED controls and a sleek handle round out the ease of use on this countertop microwave, which remains one of the best at its price point. This washer may struggle on the biggest of dish loads, but otherwise, it should be smooth sailing in the kitchen from here on out with this product.

Pros

  • Great design
  • Highly efficient
  • Low water consumption
  • Clear LEDs and indicators
  • Delayed start
  • High capacity

Cons

  • Can struggle on larger loads

Countertop Dishwasher Buyer’s Guide


Countertop dishwashers are becoming more popular, but many homeowners may not be familiar enough with the appliance to make an educated choice when it comes to choosing a model to stick with.

To make sure your new appliance works with the design and setup of your home, we recommend considering the following:

Water Consumption

One of the primary selling points and most important consideration to make for a countertop dishwasher is the amount of water consumed during a cycle. While countertop dishwashers use less water than hand washing or built-in dishwashers, they still can range significantly between makes and models. And while a several gallon difference may not seem like much, over time, that can add up to a serious difference in price when you factor in the monthly water bill. Finding a good balance between clean dishes and water consumption is key. While a high water bill is no fun, it may be less frustrating to some than dirty dishes coming right out of the dishwasher.

Volume & Weight

The next most important consideration when it comes to a countertop dishwasher is the issue of the volume and weight of the appliance. Countertop dishwashers take up a considerable amount of room that could otherwise be used for different appliances. This means that many homeowners may try to move their countertop dishwashers into and out of storage when needed. Always be sure to measure the available countertop space you can dedicate to a countertop dishwasher. And if you plan to store your countertop dishwasher, be sure to measure the cabinet or closet space available for storage.

If you do plan to keep your countertop dishwashers as a permanent home installation, however, then the issue of volume will become far more important to you. The volume of each of our countertop dishwasher picks is stated in decibels. Remember that decibels are logarithmic instead of linear, so if a dishwasher is 10 decibels louder than the competition, that would make it twice as loud. Finding a countertop dishwasher that’s silent enough not to interrupt other nearby festivities will help to reduce the invasive nature of the appliance.

Considering Cycles

Aside from running a standard cycle, portable dishwashers can differentiate themselves from the stringent competition by offering a multitude of cycles meant to maximize use. For instance, a low-water setting could be helpful for when you only need to wash a few dishes or one or two pots and pans. Other cycles are specific to types of plates. For example, the glass setting on the hOmeLabs Compact Dishwasher will use less water since glassware typically does not get as dirty as other types of dishes.

The more cycles your portable dishwasher offers, the more specific you will be able to get when it comes to washing up. Cycles on dishwashers usually alter two primary factors: the length of the wash, and the amount of water used within it. Both can be adjusted to make sure you end up with clean dishes (and a low water bill) every time.

FAQ

How many dishes can I fit into my portable dishwasher?

A sink full of dishes is a good general estimate for what a portable dishwasher can hold. However, capacity will range slightly due to the external dimensions of the unit. In most cases, dishwashers with the largest dimensions will hold the most dishes.

Another indication of how many dishes will fit into a portable dishwasher is the stated number of place settings that will fit. For those unaware, a place setting is a collection of dishes, such as cups, plates, saucers, and others. A five-piece place setting is utilized for measurement of dishwasher capacity, and all of the dishwashers on our list have hold 5 or 6 five-piece place settings.

How do I connect my portable dishwasher to my home’s water supply?

Connecting your portable dishwasher to your home’s supply is quick and easy. For many portable dishwashers, you can easily connect and disconnect the tubing as needed for more efficient use of your home’s kitchen sink.

First, remove the aerator from your kitchen faucet. This piece is effective of water that won’t splash, but in the case of portable dishwashers, it will only hurt performance if left on. After removing the aerator, turn on your hot water supply and run water until hot.

Next, turn the faucet off and align the quick connect hose’s collar with the open spout. Most portable dishwashers utilize collars that can be slide downward to deactivate them. Slide the collar down, connect to the faucet, and lift the collar for a connection. You can then activate your portable dishwasher and begin washing.

I have a unique/pull-down kitchen faucet. Can I still connect my portable dishwasher to this faucet?

Generally speaking, you won’t be able to connect faucets that pull down, utilize sprayers, or otherwise pull down from the spout itself without serious modification. Countertop dishwashers are designed to connect to a standard faucet opening, and in almost all cases, you’ll need to remove aerators from within the spout for more efficient operation.

That being said, however, some connective tubing from countertop dishwashers can be adapted to these sorts of faucets or can connect via some other means. Be sure to look into each countertop dishwasher to note the available options.