When it comes to single-serve coffee makers, Keurig has become one of the leaders of the pack. With their patented K-Cup brewing system, along with their ability to offer value for money machines, a Keurig might just be what you’re looking for to fill that spot on the counter. But with so many machines out there — various models and sizes, all with different feature sets, choosing the best machine can quickly become dizzying.
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Let’s break it down — in this article, we’ll look at what each machine can do and what it can’t, and we’ll discuss the differences between each machine. By the end of this article, you’ll be ready to pick your dream machine and will be ready to enjoy freshly brewed K-Cup coffee straight from your brand-spankin’ new Keurig!
What Is a Keurig Coffee Maker
When we talk about Keurig coffee makers, we are usually referring to the Keurig branded, single-serve coffee makers. While the company does more than just single-serve machines, the single-serve K-Cup system is certainly what put them on the map and is hence what they are now famous for.
Almost all Keurig coffee makers brew coffee using the company’s patented K-Cup brewing system, which has been long hailed as the easiest and fastest way to brew coffee at home. Simply add water to the Keurig’s reservoir, place a K-Cup in the brew head, and choose your size — that’s it. Clean, fast, and easy.
Keurig offers multiple different coffee makers, running the entire gamut — from the ultra-slim and almost portable K-mini through to the office workhorse, the Keurig K155 officePRO, and practically everything in between.
Thanks to their ease of use, and cost-effectiveness, Keurig coffee makers have also been a long-standing staple for hotels, restaurants, and offices across the globe.
Benefits of Using a Keurig Coffee Maker
Keurig manufacture many of the highest-selling coffee makers on Amazon. Thanks to multiple cool features, ease of use, price, and the huge selection of coffees and other beverages available in K-Cup form, Keurig is an attractive option for many coffee lovers.
Easy to Use
The biggest draw for most people to Keurig coffee makers, and undoubted one of the key benefits of the K-cup brewing system, is its ease of use. The machine doesn’t take any time to learn; it’s just plug-and-play! Well, you do need to fill the tank first — but following that, it’s plug-and-play all the way!
On top of that, most Keurigs only need to be cleaned every couple of months. Cleaning is a super simple process, no harder than brewing a few cups of coffee!
Can Be a Modular Setup
We all know that Keurig is known for its single-serve, K-Cup coffee makers. But what many people don’t know is that Keurig also offers dual coffee makers — basically a two-in-one!
On one side, we have the ability to brew a standard, single-serve K-Cup, while on the other side, we can brew a whole 12-cup carafe using freshly ground coffee. This is ultimately the best of both worlds—a quick single cup for the morning rush and a whole pot for lazy weekend afternoons.
While not all Keurig coffee makers offer multiple brewing methods within the one machine, there are a few that do.
Keurig coffee makers run the whole spectrum when the price is concerned. From budget, single-cup home coffee makers through to commercial-grade machines designed to satisfy an entire office of the caffeine obsessed, there is something for any budget. Keurig’s top Amazon seller, the K-Classic, is an absolute steal for around the $100 mark.
You Have a Huge Variety of Drinks to Choose From
The Keurig k55 makes a great cup of coffee. But it can also brew up the best Keurig hot chocolate K-cups, as well as tea, chai, and flavored coffees, too. The list of beverage companies making K-cups is a mile long — from well-known giants like Starbucks and Peets through to smaller, more niche companies like Panama Coffee Gold Reserve. There is coffee, tea, or hot chocolate to suit everyone in the family.
Looks Great in the Kitchen
Keurig makes some sleek looking coffee makers. The Keurig K-Mini, with its playful colors and minimalist design, would look beautiful on any art-deco kitchen counter, while the Keurig K-Elite looks like something from a sci-fi movie.
And rather than hiding your K-Cups away in the cupboard, why not store them loudly and proudly on the countertop using a beautiful coffee pod holder. Designed to keep your K-cups organized and looking great, coffee pod holders come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and construction materials — from simple glass jars to wooden draws and bamboo display racks. To avoid a toppling pod holder or a messy looking jar, be sure that you don’t overload your coffee pod holder.
How Does a Keurig Coffee Maker Work
Keurig coffee makers brew both disposable and reusable K-Cups. But what on earth is a K-Cup!? How does a K-Cup work and why do I want to brew coffee with it!? Glad you asked!
A K-cup is essentially a small cup or ‘pod’ that contains a paper filter and coffee, tea, or hot chocolate powder. The pod is sealed from the outside world by an airtight foil seal — effectively keeping out light, oxygen, and humidity, which in turn locks in freshness.
Setting up a Keurig is super easy — just add water to the water reservoir, which is usually detachable, meaning it can be filled directly from the tap. Reseat it back onto the machine and turn the Keurig on. Give the machine a few moments to heat up, and we’re in business! Ready to brew some coffee!
When brewing a K-Cup, one will first place a pod in the brew head of the machine. This is usually done by lifting the brew head using the handle and seating a pod in the holder. Upon closing the brew head, the user chooses a size which engages the brew. A needle punctures the foil lid, allowing pressurized hot water flow into the K-cup. This will mark the beginning of the extraction.
On the other side of the K-cup, right at the bottom, another needle punctures a hole in the plastic cup, allowing the freshly brewed coffee to flow from the K-cup and the mug, eagerly waiting below. Once the coffee has finished brewing, the user only needs to remove the used K-cup, discard it, and enjoy their coffee!
The average Keurig unit will brew a standard mug of coffee in under 2 minutes — meaning that from start to finish, including filing up the Keurig with water and allowing it to heat up, brewing will take no more than three minutes. This number does become smaller, depending on the particular Keurig in question. Considering that there is almost no cleanup required after brewing, this is lightning fast.
Short History of Keurig Coffee Makers
Though most people know Keurig for their home coffee brewers and K-cups, the company actually started with the office crowd in their sights. With the goal of solving the age-old problem of stale coffee, a common sight in many offices, founder John Sylvan came up with the idea of coffee pods — single-serve coffee. With the use of K-Cups, each person can enjoy a fresh cup of coffee, brewed to order. No need to brew a big pot of coffee, much of which will go stale before it can be consumed.
After much trial and error — trying different systems, pods, and machines, the first inception of Keurig coffee makers was finally launched in 1998. These first machines were specifically designed to be used in medium-sized offices.
As the enthusiasm for single-cup brewing grew, the company added home coffee makers to their line in 2004.
After many iterations of coffee makers and pods over the years, we arrive in 2020 with the companies current line-up of coffee makers. We’ll take a good look at each of these machines in the sections below.
Pros and Cons of Keurig Coffee Makers
Running through the pros and cons of any brewing system is an excellent way of deciding if that particular system will work for you. Let’s take a look high and the lows of Keurig coffee makers.
- Makes a cup of coffee very quickly.
- Can be very inexpensive, depending on the model of machine you choose.
- Is extremely easy to use.
- There is a huge range of K-cups.
- Some Keurig machines, such as the K-duo, offer two different brewers within one machine.
- There are many nice accessories like pod holders and stands that pair well with Keurig machines.
- If not cleaned regularly, Keurig machines have been known to experience issues.
- The cup quality coming from some of the K-cups can leave much to be desired.
Keurig has dozens of different models of machines, ranging from the tiny K-Mini, all the way through to the K-classic and the office go-to, the K155. With the company constantly updating their machine offerings, it can be hard to keep track of what is current in the world of Keurig.
Here are all of Keurigs home coffee machines and a brief yet in-depth rundown of each machine and it’s features.
The K-Classic is Keurig’s staple coffee maker and currently Keurig’s top-selling machine on Amazon. The K-Classic is capable of brewing three different cup sizes; 6, 8, and 10oz. And it’s large 48oz water reservoir means you can brew around 6 cups of coffee before needing to top up the water.
Another handy feature of the K-Classic is that, unlike many other single-serve machines, you can brew right into a 7” travel mug.
The K-Classic at a glance:
- Large 48oz removable water reservoir
- Brews 3 different sizes
- Automatically tells you when the machine needs cleaning or needs more water.
- Fast, under 1 minute brew time
Keurig K-Mini and K-Mini Plus
The two smallest Keurigs in the line-up, the K-Mini and K-Mini Plus, are much the same in almost every way bar one — the K-Mini Plus features a removable water tank. With brew sizes between 6 and 12 ounces (depending on how much water you add to the reservoir), the K-Mini is the perfect choice for brewing single-serve coffee in even the tiniest of homes.
The K-Mini and K-Mini Plus at a glance:
- Perfect for small spaces
- The K-Mini has a stationary water tank while the K-Mini Plus features a removable one.
- The K-Mini Plus also offers a larger range of colors and a brew-strength control feature.
Fancy a cafe latte or cappuccino? The Keurig K-Cafe might just be the machine for you. Opposed to traditional espresso machines, the K-Cafe is most likely the easiest way to make a latte or cappuccino at home. The K-Cafe uses the same K-Cups as the other Keurig machines and uses them to pull a ‘shot’ of coffee, perfect for drinking with steamed milk.
The K-Cafe at a glance:
- No coffee-making experience is required. The machine does the brewing and milk foaming — all you need to do is pour the latte art!
- Uses standard K-cups
- Also brews regular K-Cup style coffee
- Brews four cup sizes; 4,8,10 and 12oz
Offering 4 different brew sizes, a strong brew option, and a big 52oz water tank, the K-Select is the next step up from the Keurig K-Classic. The K-Select has all of the bells and whistles as the K-Classic, only it has a larger water tank and more brewing options, with a slightly smaller footprint.
The K-Select at a glance:
- Huge 52oz water tank
- Four cup sizes; 6, 8, 10, and 12oz
- Under 1 minute brew time
- Brew strength option
- Maintenance reminder light
Just like the K-Mini and the K-Mini Plus, the Keurig K-Slim is designed for small spaces. But where the K-Slim and the K-Mini differs is that the K-Slim includes a fully detachable, 48oz water tank, along with three brew size options.
The K-Slim at a glance:
- Under 5” wide
- Removable 48oz water tank
- 3 brew sizes; 8, 10, and 12oz
- Features descale and add water indicators
There are a couple of models of the K-Duo — the K-Duo, and the K-Duo Plus. The K-Duo probably offers the most, in terms of options, out of all the Keurig coffee makers. Why is that? Because the K-Duo is not only a K-Cup brewer but a drip coffee maker, too.
The K-Duo at a glance:
- Brew a full 12 cup carafe of drip coffee
- Use either freshly ground coffee or K-Cups
- On the K-Cup brewing side, there are 4 different brew sizes and a strength control option.
- Both brewers use a single, fully removable, 60oz water tank.
- Programmable brew starts feature.
- Hotplate below the carafe to keep coffee hot
Keurig K-Duo Plus
Unlike the K-Duo, the K-Duo Plus doesn’t utilize two separate brewers in one unit. Instead, it opts for one single brewer that can use both ground coffee and K-cups. The K-Duo Plus comes with a large 60oz water reservoir, 4 different single serve brewing sizes, and the option of brewing a 12 cup carafe of coffee.
The K-Duo Plus at a glance:
- Uses either fresh ground coffee or K-Cups in one brewer
- Large, fully removable, 60oz water tank
- Includes a mesh filter to use for brewing drip coffee
- Programmable auto-start feature. Just like a coffee brewing alarm clock!
- The water tank’s handle can be potioned to the left, right, or the rear of the unit.
- Relatively small size for what the machine can do
The K-Elite is the most programmable machine that Keurig offers. The K-Elite can brew in 5 sizes and, thanks to the 75oz water reservoir, can brew up to 8 cups of coffee before it needs refilling. With features like temperature control, variable brew strength, and an auto on/off function, the K-Elite is a great option for those wanting a fast and easy cup of coffee but want a little more control.
The K-Elite at a glance:
- One of the only Keurig machines with a temperature control function
- Large 72oz water tank
- 5 brew sizes; 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12oz
- Auto on/off feature
- Quiet brewing with Keurig’s ‘Quiet Brew Technology.’
- Maintenance reminder alert lets you know when it’s time to clean the machine.
- Brews a cup of coffee in under 1 minute
According to Keurig, the K-Supreme houses the company’s most advanced brewing technology to date. The technology in question, dubbed ‘Multistream Technology,’ allows the water entering the K-Cup to do so more evenly, in turn creating a more even extraction, and therefore a better-tasting coffee. As well as Multistream Technology, the K-Supreme also includes a large 66oz water tank, 4 different brew sizes, and a brew strength option.
The K-Supreme at a glance
- Keurig’s only machine to offer their advanced ‘Multistream Technology.’
- Large 66oz water tank
- Four different brew sizes; 6, 8, 10, and 12oz
- Includes an ‘over ice’ brewing function
Keurig K155 OfficePro
The classic K155 is Keurig’s small office workhorse. It features a full touchscreen, a 90oz water tank, and 4 brew sizes. It also has variable temperature control and multiple language options.
The K155 OfficePro at a glance:
- Large 90oz non-removable water tank. Make up to 18 cups before needing to refill
- 4 different brew sizes; 4, 6, 8, and 10oz
- Full-color touchscreen control
- Brew temperature control
- Fast sub 1 minute brew time
If we were giving out awards, the K15 would surely win one for having the coolest color palette. With aqua, black plum, burnt orange, and chili red, just to name a few, the K15 might make the perfect focal point of any kitchen. The K15 is a small machine designed for small spaces. It brews one cup at a time, between 6 and 10oz, depending on the amount of water you add to the tank. You can’t get much easier than the K15 — with one power button and a brew button; the K15 is made for simplicity.
The K15 at a glance:
- Brews a cup in under 2 minutes
- Compact size
- Easy to use
- Many interesting and unique colors to choose from
- Removable drip tray
Things to Look for When Comparing Keurig Models
The task of choosing the world’s best Keurig coffee maker is a mammoth one, no doubt. But it’s not impossible! While it’s hard to tell how a machine will perform before actually using it, there are a bunch of different things we can look at in order to make an educated decision about which product to buy.
Size of the Machine
Keurig offers many machines ranging in size from tiny and portable to big and almost commercial. Have a good idea of where in the kitchen, or in the office, you’ll want the machine to live. This way, you’ll be able to eliminate any coffee makers that are just too big for your space. Are you wanting the machine to sit neatly under the cupboards in the kitchen? Bust out that measuring tape and check how much space you have to play with.
Location Where You Plan to Use It
Are you looking for a machine to use at home or in the office? Or maybe you can’t live without your K-Cups and want a small coffee maker to bring with you while city hopping from hotel to hotel. Where you plan on using the machine will largely dictate the size of the machine you choose.
If you live in a high altitude area and want to use a Keurig coffee maker, go with one of the top models, like the K-Elite, as this model offers a ‘High Altitude Setting,’ which helps the machine work properly at higher 5000ft+ altitudes.
Cup Size Options
Do you want a coffee maker that can brew a wide range of sizes? Or are you more of a 10oz all day, everyday kind of person? Coffee machines like the K-Cafe, and the K-Select, offer 4 different brew sizes, while the K-Slim and the K-Classic brew three sizes.
Waiting for a coffee first thing in the morning can require a little patience. But some machines require you to have more of it than others. Brewing times for Keurig coffee makers range from under 1 minute to somewhere closer to 2 minutes. If you can’t see yourself waiting 2 whole minutes for a coffee, go for one of the super-fast, sub-1-minute brewing options.
Water Reservoir Size and Design
Does topping up a coffee maker’s water supply after each brew sound like far too much work? There is a huge variance when it comes to Keurig coffee makers and their respective water reservoir sizes. Some machines offer a water reservoir that needs to be refilled after each brew, while Keurig’s biggest, the K155, contains a 90oz tank, big enough to brew around 18 cups. Of course, the bigger the water reservoir is, the less portable the machine will be, so be sure to take that into account.
Another thing to note when choosing the perfect water reservoir is the direction in which it is removed from the machine. Some can only be removed from the rear, while others can be removed from the rear, as well as either side of the coffee maker. This should also be taken into account when choosing where to house your Keurig.
Hot Water Dispenser
A coffee maker isn’t only good for coffee! No! Tea, instant noodles, and soup fans rejoice; Keurig coffee makers can also dispense plain hot water too. No need to boil the kettle; just dispense directly from the coffee maker.
When you remove your mug from underneath the brew head, you don’t want to have residual drips of coffee and water, making a mess of your countertop. This is why we need a drip tray. Having a machine with a removable drip tray is super handy — to clean it, simply wash it by hand or throw it in the top rack of the dishwasher. While most drip trays are removable, some aren’t, so it’s best to check to be sure.
Quiet Brew Technology
Coffee makers aren’t necessarily the quietest of appliances in the kitchen. If a noisy coffee maker is an issue for you — maybe you have a newborn that wakes up at the drop of a hat — go for one of the machines, like the K-Elite or K-Select, both of which include Keurig’s ‘Quiet Brew Technology.’
Most Keurigs have the handy feature of automatically turning themselves off after a set amount of inactivity. This will not only save power, but it will also save your machines heating element from wearing out prematurely.
Getting up early in the morning and having the coffee machine on, already ready and waiting to start brewing is a beautiful thing. Some Keurigs do offer this feature, known as an auto-on function. The auto-on function can be programmed for any time and is a super handy feature that helps sleepy heads brew a coffee in the morning, ASAP — no need to wait for the machine to heat up. Some models also offer programmable temperature and high altitude settings.
Over 98% of a cup of coffee is made up of water. This means that to make a truly tasty cup of coffee, we need to use truly tasty water! While you could go out and buy bottles of filtered water, this can quickly become expensive and is rather wasteful. The better option is to use a water filter. Almost all current models of Keurig coffee makers contain a water filter that is housed within the water reservoir.
One of the best ways to know if a coffee maker is good or not is to check out its user rating! Read reviews! While many Keurig users face issues with pipe blockages, and coffee spurting out of the brew nozzle, this is almost always due to a lack of cleaning. But user reviews can also uncover hidden issues such as poor build quality or faulty electronics.
Keurig Model Comparison
As we’ve seen, Keurig offers many different coffee makers, from single-serve and drip, all the way through to commercial machines designed to be used in large offices, hotels, universities, or anywhere else that requires large amounts of caffeine, quickly.
But how does a home machine differ from a commercial one? What does a drip coffee maker offer that a single-serve one can’t, and vice-versa?
Keurig Single-Serve Coffee Makers
When we talk about Keurig coffee makers, these single-serve coffee makers are generally what we are referring to. They come in a huge variety of sizes, each with different features. All Keurig single-serve coffee makers use K-Cups for brewing.
Here are a few of the features that make up a Keurig single-serve coffee maker.
- Depending on the machine, a single-serve coffee maker can brew a cup of coffee in less than 1 minute.
- Only compatible K-Cups can be used for brewing.
- Can be very inexpensive
- Machines vary in size from very small to mid-sized
- Depending on the machine, one can brew up to 8 cups of coffee without needing to refill the water reservoir.
Keurig Drip Coffee Makers
Keurig currently has two products capable of producing drip coffee — the K-Duo, and the K-Duo Plus.
Here are a few of the features that make up a Keurig drip coffee maker.
- Brews a single cup quickly. Brewing a full carafe of drip coffee takes a little longer.
- Can brew up to a 12 cup carafe of coffee, as well as a single cup
- Freshly ground coffee, as well as K-Cups, can be used.
- Mid-sized machines
- Contains a large 60oz water reservoir
Keurig Commercial Coffee Makers
Designed for large spaces and for many people, Keurig’s commercial coffee makers have features that aren’t available in their domestic machines. From making milk coffees to having the ability to be plumbed into mains water, these machines are for commercial applications only.
Here are a few of the features that make up a Keurig commercial coffee maker.
- Can brew single cups of coffee, quickly
- 5 different cup sizes to choose from
- Multiple beverage options including cappuccinos, cafe lattes, black coffee, tea, and hot chocolate
- Only K-Cups can be used
- Large machine
- Can be plumbed into the mains water supply, or use a large water reservoir.
How to Use a Keurig Coffee Maker
Now we’ve chosen the perfect Keurig and it’s finally time to get down and brew some coffee!
The next step is to choose a delicious K-Cup. You might be purchasing your coffee from Amazon or from a local store — either way, make sure it’s tasty!
Keurig coffee makers, regardless of the model, brew K-Cups in almost the same way, with the process only differing slightly from one machine to the other. While one machine may include 5 size settings, and another may have only 1, the setup and brewing with each machine remain essentially unchanged.
For this example, we’re going to brew a K-Cup using the K-Classic coffee maker.
- Keurig coffee maker
Step 1 — Fill the water reservoir
While the machine is powered off, detach the water reservoir from the machine and bring it over to the tap. Fill the reservoir to the max indicator line. Reseat the water reservoir on the K-Classic. Now power on the machine.
Step 2 — Pre-heat
You will see now that both the power light and the auto-off lights are illuminated green, while the heating light is illuminated red. Let the machine heat up for a moment. You’ll know when the machine is ready when the heating light goes off and the cup size buttons light up.
Step 3 — Insert the K-Cup
Once the machine is all heated up, we can begin brewing! Lift the brew head using the handle and place your K-Cup inside. There is only one way the cup can go in, so this step is super easy—lower the brew head. The cup size buttons will now be blinking.
Step 4 — Brew
Place your favorite mug under the coffee outlet, then press either the 6, 8 or 10oz cup button. Watch the coffee flow into your mug.
Step 5 — Enjoy
Once the brew is finished, remove your mug from the drip tray. Lift the brew head, remove and discard the used K-Cup, then lower the brew head back down. Enjoy your coffee!
How to Clean a Keurig Coffee Maker
The number one complaint most Keurig users have is that their machine eventually, whether it’s in a couple of months or in a year, starts playing up. The coffee might start spurting out of the coffee outlet, or maybe the machine stops brewing altogether.
Both of these issues, along with many more, can often be solved by implementing a decent cleaning schedule. We’re not talking every day or even every week — just once every couple of months will keep your Keurig healthy and running the way it should.
These issues are thanks to blockages created within the pipes, inlets, and outlets of the machine. When water touches the pipes of the machine, it leaves minerals behind. Over time these minerals, mostly calcium, build up so much that it can actually create bottlenecks and even full blockages of these pipes.
A simple descale cycle can remove this mineral build-up. The cycle doesn’t take long, is incredibly easy, and can be done using either a purpose made descaling solution or plain white vinegar. As we’re cleaning, the descaler, which is an acid, will work its way into the brewer and eat away at the calcium, leaving the machine sparkling clean and ready to brew another day!
This process usually needs to be done once every 2 months, but If you live in an area with particularly hard water, descaling might need to be done more often due to more calcium being in the water.
- Keurig coffee maker
- Vinegar or descaling solution
Step 1 — Detach the water reservoir
With the machine turned off, remove the water reservoir from your Keurig. If the model you own has a water filter in the reservoir, remove that too and set it aside on a clean tea towel. Empty the water reservoir.
Step 2 — Add the cleaning solution to the reservoir
If you are using a purpose-made descaling solution, like the one made by Keurig, follow the instructions on the bottle as to how much to use. If you are using trusty old white vinegar, add 14oz to the water reservoir. Reseat the water reservoir back onto the machine, and power the machine on.
Step 3 — Turn off the auto-off function
Ensure the auto-off function of your machine is turned off.
Step 4 — Begin the descale cycle
The descaling process will work like this — we’ll run one cup of vinegar through the machine first. This will ensure the boiler is full of vinegar and that any part of the machine that is usually touched by water is now being touched by vinegar.
Place a mug on the drip tray, lift the brew head handle, then close it. Now with no K-Cup inserted, engage the brew button. Discard this vinegar, or use it to clean shower screens, windows, or stainless steel benchtops.
Repeat this process until the machine alerts you that it needs a water refill.
Step 5 — Wait
The vinegar by this point is all through the pipes, inlets, and outlets of the machine. Now we’re going to let the acidic vinegar sit and do its thing for 1 hour.
Step 6 — Rinse cycle
Once an hour has elapsed, come back to the machine and detach the reservoir. Discard or save the remaining vinegar and give the water reservoir a good wash. Now fill it up with freshwater and reseat it on the machine. Place a mug on the drip tray and, with no K-Cup added, run a brew cycle. Continue to do this until the tank is empty. Refill the tank and repeat the process. We want to run, in total, 2 or 3 reservoirs worth of water through the machine. This will remove any lingering vinegar left in the machine.
Step 7— Finish cleaning
Remove the water reservoir from the machine one last time. If your tank has a filter, reattach it, then fill the reservoir. Reseat the reservoir back onto the machine.
Your Keurig coffee maker should now be sparkling clean, good as new, and ready to brew.
Does More Spending Mean More Quality
When it comes to pod-based coffee machines, spending more doesn’t always guarantee you a higher quality cup of coffee. While spending more will certainly buy you a machine packed with more features, brewing options, and built of higher quality materials, none of these things really guarantee you a better cup of coffee.
Pod-based brewing systems, like those by Nespresso and Keurig, are somewhat standardized in the way that you always know what you’re going to get, regardless of the machine you choose. A test with Nespresso vs Keurig compared to each other would produce far wider results than would different Keurig machines of different price points against one another.
If, however, you want to do a little tweaking, brew hotter, or cooler, or you want to have loads of different size options and brew-strength controls, a higher-priced machine is the way to go.
Do’s and Don’ts With Keurig Coffee Makers
- Do research the machine before making your purchase. Go through the information above so you know exactly what to look for.
- Do try different K-Cups. There are literally hundreds of options out there.
- Do try adding your own ground coffee to a reusable K-Cup. This way you can not only try coffees that aren’t normally available in K-Cups, but you will also be reducing your waste.
- Do make sure you choose a machine that is the right size for your space. Keurig offers so many different sizes; you’re bound to find the right fit.
- Don’t forget to descale your machine every 2 months. Descaling will keep your Keurig running smoothly.
- Don’t try to brew coffee until the machine has fully pre-heated. Brewing early and without enough heat will likely result in a sour, unpleasant cup of coffee.
Quick Tips for Keurig Coffee Machine Owners
Already own a Keurig and looking for some tips? Here are some handy little tidbits that might help boost your single-serve coffee game.
- If your machine offers it, do play with the water temperature control. Lighter roasted coffees can taste better using hotter water, while darker roasts often work better with slightly cooler water.
- When it comes to cleaning your Keurig, you really have two options; white vinegar, or purpose-made descaling solution. A good clean with one of these will fix most of the common Keurig problems. Because the descaling solution is a purpose-made cleaner, if your Keurig is really clogged, use a descaling solution rather than vinegar.
- If you are finding the coffee that comes out of your Keurig a little too bitter, try choosing a lighter roast. Those roasty, bitter flavors are usually developed during the latter phase of a roast. A lighter roast will inherently have less of these flavors.
- Try using filtered water in your Keurig. Though many Keurigs come with their own water filter, using already filtered water can boost the flavor of a coffee big time
FAQ About Keurig Coffee Makers
What is the most reliable Keurig model?
With 78% of buyers rating it 5 stars on Amazon, the Keurig K-Classic seems to be just that — a classic. If you are a fan of single-serve machines and K-Cups, the K-Classic will be right up your alley. While some people do face issues with the machine, most problems can be avoided. So long as you clean it often, it should serve you well.
What is the difference between K-Cups and pods?
All K-Cups are pods, but not all pods are K-Cups. A coffee pod, also known as a coffee capsule, is what we call the containers of coffee that are used in the various single-serve coffee makers, including Keurig and Nespresso coffee machine.
How do I tell which Keurig model I have?
The model of each Keurig machine is imprinted on a metal plate on the underside of the machine. Be careful when tilting the machine to check — ensure the unit is power off, unplugged, and that all water has been removed from the machine.
What is the difference between K-classic and K-select Keurig?
The K-Select is somewhat the big brother of the K-Classic in terms of features, and smaller brother in terms of overall size. While the K-Classic features a 48oz water reservoir, the K-Select contains a 52oz one. The K-Select also has 4 different brew sizes, whereas the K-Classic has 3.
Do all Keurigs use the same K-cups?
While there are older models of Keurigs that used different K-Cups, all current-day models use standard K-Cups.
Choosing a coffee maker can be a tricky task. But luckily we can make the job easier by just knowing what to look for. As soon as we know what we want and need in a coffee maker, it becomes that much easier to choose the perfect machine. Brew a tasty cup of coffee on your new Keurig, and enjoy it!