>Off the Beaten Path>"K-Cup" Coffee Makers
I walk into my grocery store the other day and they've completely re-done the coffee section. It's almost all "k-cups". (I'm not sure what the non-commercial name is for the coffee pods. Oh, hey, maybe it's "coffee pods"). Now, I'm trying to figure out if I should get rid of my traditional coffee maker and get one of these things.
Have you made the leap? If so, love it or hate it? Pros and cons? And, which system did you buy? If not, what's holding you back?
The biggest con I can think of is that if I have a dinner party and want to serve coffee after, it might be a pain making coffee by the cup. (In my mind, I throw fabulous dinner parties for my friends all the time and serve coffee while we politely debate current events).
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We've got one at work. It neither makes coffee that's really good or really bad. It does make it easy to offer a visitor to the office a quick cup. I don't use it because I don't think the coffee tastes good enough.
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I totally don't get them. I NEVER drink less than 16oz of coffee. They seem like a huge waste of packaging, IMO. I also find it irritating how much store shelving K-cups/pods take up in stores. I was in Bed Bath & Beyond looking for something in the small electrics area and virtually half of that section of the store is now dedicated to these things. I wanted to find loose tea, but they don't appear to carry that...just racks and racks and shelves of disposable one-time coffee machines, cup dealies and storage racks for them.
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It's convenient and I own one, but I still prefer my cheap drip machine. The k-cups will certainly cost more money per cup, take up more cabinet space, and will generate more waste, if you care about those sorts of things. I estimate it costs over a dollar each time I fill my travel mug using the k-cups (I need two), and it costs about 12 cents using the drip machine. I also like shopping for different coffee grounds and beans, and I can add more grounds to the drip machine as I like my coffee strong. The k-cups are very convenient though. Press a button and have hot coffee in seconds. If you really like your coffee like I do, the k-cup coffee is nothing special.
We have one at home since my husband and I have widely different schedules and don't drink enough coffee to have any desire to make two different brews during the day - plus my husband wakes up super early and this is easier for him to just grab a cup on his way out. THat being said, some of the varieties are better than others, but nothing special, you just have to see what you like. Finally, I like a really strong cup of coffee when I have it and I find what comes from the k-cups is a bit on the weak side, even with brewing a smaller cup. So yeah, these things are more for the convenience than anything...
We have one at work and home and love it. We use the Ekobrew reusable cups (again, have them both at home and at work) for those coffees and teas that we love that either aren't in Kcups or are simply cheaper to do that way. My husband has one for coffee and one for tea as he feels that the coffee taste remains even after being washed and can sully a good cup of tea. I don't drink hardly any straight coffee, so I only have one for tea.
Total gimmick, they'll be gone in a couple of years. Coffee isn't bad but it seems every cup I have is either to small or to big for the amount of coffee the machine is making, it's just easier to pour it from a pot. Beside those little containers are just a waste on resources and cost way to much money compared to a bulk coffee.
I have a one mug French press for daily use first thing, and a larger one for the weekend.
I'll never go the coffee pod route.
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My wife bought one of these for my son a while back. He keeps a different schedule than us an will usually only drink one cup at a time. It works for him. My wife and I use the old reliable percolator though.
Convenient (especially if you don't drink a lot of coffee)
Variety (You can get variety packs of coffee and can also make tea or hot chocolate)
Less environmentally friendly (I compost my coffee grounds, can't do that with the pods)
Certainly you cannot beat the convenience, naturally at a higher cost. As with everything, tastes differ, and a lot of people feel it is not as good as a regular drip coffeemaker. We still have the regular kind at home, as DW & I share a pot in the AM, and some of it I bring in a travel mug for the commute. Call me old fashioned (or just old), but I think that still makes most sense if you are in that kind of situation. Oh and in addition to all your fabulous dinner parties, don't forget all the elaborate brunches I'm sure you host.
However DW gave me a Keurig for Xmas a couple years ago for my office, and I love it. The home-brewed pot (that description sounds like anything but coffee) takes care of my morning needs, but I always have a hankering for a cup after lunch. Our office has one of the standard Bunn machines where the pots sit on the burner & cook for who knows how long, using who knows what kind of industrial-brand coffee, and I cannot drink the stuff. So it's great to have my own personal machine. I have what I think is called the Elite, which is pretty basic but does have the water reservoir. I think it makes a decent enough cup of coffee.
You can obviously get them anywhere, but if you go to Costco you might check them first. Good luck!
We got our last one there. It was the big boy with all the bells and whistles. I think we paid $150, and it came with about 4,000 k-cups.
We've had Keurig for over 2 years, and we really enjoy it.
There are pro's and con's.
- #1: it's ready at 4:20am when I wake up.
- #2: @ 6:30am, when my wife wakes up, the coffee is still fresh
- #3: 1 cup at a time is consistent with how you drink. I don't need 12 cups of coffee at home unless I have a dinner party.
- #4: night and day difference from the OLD instant coffee
- #5: my wife and I like different flavors of coffee, and the options within the KCups work well.
- #6: cleaner than traditional coffee pot. easy to clean and easy to operate. Never dirty and never stained
- The water pump will break. We've replaced ours once already, but we purchased it at Costco, and the replacement was simple as always when you shop there
- When serving 6+ cups of coffee with friends / family, it will take +/- 5 minutes to get everybody their cup of coffee.
- more expensive than traditional drip coffee
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BigCatCoffees.com lets you put together trial packs - which helps you try different flavors without buying full boxes.
+1 for BigCatCoffees
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They seem like a huge waste of packaging, IMO.
If you want just a single cup of coffee there are certainly better ways of getting it and those ways are much better for the enviroment.
If we as consumers could decrease our purchases of convenience pacakaging by just 1/3rd the energy savings would be almost unfathomable. In some cases the cost of the package equals or exceeds the product inside of it.
This packaging ends up in our landfills.
Buy more growlers and fewer six packs.