Coffee Pods Guide – What Are They & Various Types

There are millions of people in the world who love to drink coffee every single day.

Coffee is what so many of us need to start up our day so we don’t have to run around like slack-jawed zombies all day. That hot pot of coffee is calling your name! Or is it?

Yes, a pot of coffee is nice and all, but what if you just don’t feel like measuring out how much grounds to actually use? Or maybe it’s a lazy day and you just want to take your coffee and sit down. Well, have no fear! This is where coffee pods come in to save the day!

What Are Coffee Pods?

The beauty behind these little things is that they are small, sealed packets of pre-ground coffee that are sealed inside a paper filter, that can be whipped up at a moment’s notice. They are incredibly convenient because you don’t have to measure out grounds, or change filters.

Coffee pods are good for one time use, and are easy to dispose of when done. There are actually many different types of coffee pods, which range from the rather common soft pods to espresso pods. There are other kinds of coffee making products that are similar to pods, one of which is known as K-Cups.

Before you decide to enjoy a nice cup of coffee, be sure that you know the differences between each type of pod. Certain products, like K-Cups, are not cross-compatible with each other.

Type Of Coffee Pods

#1. Soft Pods

Soft coffee pods (also known as drip brew pods) are made to work for non-pressurized coffee machines, like the Senseo and Hamilton Beach brands. Soft pods are flexible and loosely packed so that they can achieve better drip extraction inside of pod holders.

Soft pods come in sizes that most often range from 55-70mm, although there are other less common sizes as well. The amount of ground coffee you would find inside of a soft coffee pod is around the area of 8.2 to 12 grams.

Because coffee pods give you less package waste, as well as more aroma and better coffee extraction, they are very popular. That being said, there are less means by which you have to actually brew the coffee, and less variety of flavors, blends, or roast options. It’s also hard to find these in grocery stores.

#2. Hard Pods

Hard Pods, or E.S.E. (Easy Serving Espresso) pods, use pressure-brew espresso machine brands such as Keurig, Bunn, and Illy. Unlike drip brew pods, espresso pods are harder and more firm, which allows them to fit tightly inside your machine’s portafilter.

Due to the coffee already being pre-ground, there’s no need for you to go to the effort of grinding and tamping espresso yourself.

E.S.E. pods have only one specific size that they come in, which is 44mm, and can weigh in from 7 (single) to 14 grams (double). They also come individually packaged, so as to help keep each pod fresh.

Hard pods allow you to get your espresso faster, and offer a more consistent taste. There are some people, however, who make the argument that the quality of E.S.E. pods isn’t quite as good as ground espresso.

#3. Coffee Capsules

It’s pretty common for people to mistake them, but coffee pods and capsules are actually not the same things. Coffee capsules are small, plastic containers topped with aluminum foil.

Calling them “coffee capsules” is rather misleading, due to the fact that they are able to contain practically anything the machine they are compatible with can make; hot chocolate, for example, is something that can be inside of a capsule.

Typical capsule brands include the aforementioned K-Cups, RealCups, T-Discs, and Nespresso. Capsules can come in just about any flavor or blend you can think of, and they are in convenient little containers.

These containers do make more waste; however, although they are biodegradable, they can also be much more expensive than pods are.

So now that you know the different types of coffee pods (and the difference between pods and capsules), you’re now ready to start up your day more easily. Or maybe you just decided to stick to traditional ground coffee instead of bothering to navigate the differences between all three types of these products. Either way, enjoy your cup of Joe!