How to Choose a Single Serve Coffee Maker

There are many different ways to enjoy your coffee at home now than there ever was before. We have more coffee makers and machines on the market than we’ve ever seen before. This is great news for anyone who wants to enjoy some nice, freshly brewed coffee in the comfort of their own home. However, there is the task of having to decide what type of coffee maker to get. 

Single serve coffee makers have increased in popularity in recent years and there are now more machines available on the market, as well as more coffee pods to fit these machines than ever before. It all began with the extreme popularity of the Keurig, but now the market has grown to many other brands as well. If you’re shopping for one, it might seem a little bit overwhelming. Below is a super detailed guide on how to choose a single serve coffee maker, so jump right in.

What is a Single Serve Coffee Maker?

example of a single serve coffee maker

Before we can talk about how to choose the right on for you, we need to explain what it is. First off, it’s not the same as instant coffee. Because a single service machine will brew very quickly (almost instantly), some people think it is instant coffee, but it’s not.

A single serve coffee maker will brew one cup of coffee at a time. It uses pre-measured coffee pods that slip into the machine and then fill your cup below with the press of a button. All you need to do is choose a cup size, insert the pod, press the button and let it do its thing.

Nearly every type of coffee you can think of is available in coffee pods for use in single serve coffee makers. It’s quick and easy and gives you delicious coffee, quick and hot, right when you want it.

Learn about choosing the best home espresso machine here as well as a options for the best home coffee maker here.

What are the Benefits to a Single Serve Coffee Maker?

There are several benefits to these single serve coffee makers, which is precisely why they are so popular today. Not only do you see them in homes, but you can also find them in office spaces, doctor’s offices, waiting rooms, and more.

These are very popular because there are many benefits to a single serve coffee maker such as:

  • They’re easy to use
  • They’re very convenient
  • They take up less space
  • They require very little cleanup

Who Benefits from Single Serve Coffee Makers?

If you want great coffee with minimal effort, this is the coffee maker for you. If you live alone or you’re the only person drinking coffee, this might be a good, economical choice for you. You might also see these in waiting areas of businesses or doctor’s offices, so that guests can make a quick cup while they are waiting.

Things to Look for When Choosing Your Coffee Maker

When selecting the right single serve coffee maker for your needs, here are some things you can consider:

  1. Cup size settings – It’s important to consider cup size before purchasing your coffee maker. If you just use a standard size coffee mug, then cup size settings may not matter much. But if you like to have a coffee mug at home but a larger to-go cup when you’re headed out the door, then you may opt to select a machine that has different cup size settings.
  2. Type of Single Serve Coffee Maker (Keurig, Nespresso, or Other) – The first step in choosing a single-serve coffee maker is determining which type you prefer. Keurig and Nespresso are the two major brands in the single-serve coffee industry, but there are also other brands. Keurig offers a wide selection of coffee pods whereas Nespresso offers a variety of coffee capsules. Keurig appeals to those who want more variety from different coffee brands, whereas Nespresso offers different blends from a single brand. Other brands tend to be more affordable and offer different types of coffee pods and capsules that are compatible with multiple brands.
  3. Brew adjust – If you make your coffee the same way every time, you may not need a brew adjust setting. However, if you like to get creative with your coffees or try different types like espresso or even tea, you may want a machine with a brew adjust setting.
  4. Coffee Pod/Capsule Cost and Selection – Coffee pods/capsules can range from around $0.25 to $1 each, so the cost can add up over time. Consider which brands offer your favorite coffee flavors and at what price range, as well as looking for brands that are more environmentally friendly. Many brands have started to offer biodegradable pods/capsules to reduce environmental waste.
  5. Size – How much counter space do you have at your coffee station? It’s important to know that you can accommodate the size of the machine you’re considering buying. Single serve coffee makers are typically more compact than the traditional drip coffee makers, but the exact dimensions can vary greatly between models. It doesn’t hurt to do your research into size first.
  6. Grinds – All single serve coffee makers do not use the same type of coffee pods. If you have a specialty type of coffee that you enjoy, you will want to be sure
  7. Hot water button – This is a really useful feature if you want to be able to use your coffee maker to get instant hot water for other things like soups, tea, hot cocoa, or even ramen noodles. Not all models have a hot water button.
  8. Display – Some cheaper models do not have a display at all. If you are only making single coffee from regular coffee pods, this may not matter to you. However, if you get fancier with your coffee and take it more seriously, you may want one with LCD technology. You will also want to consider what you want to show on the display and if you want one-touch technology for starting the machine, a timer, and other features like a clock or an automatic shut off. The more features, the more the price tag.
  9. Water tank size – The water tank sizes in these models don’t vary much. Typically, they are between 50 and 85 ounces. It may not matter much to you if you’re only make one regular sized cup at a time. However, if it is important to you, do your research before you purchase.
  10. How to clean – Does the model you’re considering have dishwasher safe parts? If so, it will be very easy for you to clean. Many people feel this is worth investing a little more at the start because it will be more convenient to keep in good shape over time.
  11. Additional Features – There are additional features you may want to consider when purchasing your single-serve coffee maker. Some machines offer a milk frother, hot water dispenser, and multiple serve sizes. Additionally, some brands offer app connectivity that allows you to schedule your coffee preparation time, and monitor the machine’s status and maintenance needs.
  12. Maintenance – Another factor to consider is maintenance. Some single-serve coffee makers require more cleaning than others. Additionally, consider how easily accessible the water reservoir and coffee pod compartments are for cleaning.
  13. Price Point – Last but not least, you must consider the price point. Single serve coffee makers can range from as low as $20 to as high as $500 for a high-end option. It’s essential to find a machine that fits both your needs and budget. We recommend investing in a machine that has a solid warranty policy to ensure that you are covered if anything goes wrong.

Conclusions of How to Choose A Single Serve Coffee Maker

At the end of the day, we can’t tell you which coffee maker or even which brand is best for you. That’s a decision you can only make for yourself. However, we hope the information we’ve given will help you get started on the right track.

No two coffee makers are ever the same and when choosing a single serve or Keurig style coffee machine, you have more options than ever before today. Do some research and select the machine that ticks off the most important boxes for your needs. You won’t regret it!