I’ve always been an explorer when it comes to drinking hot coffee. It find it impossible to stick to a particular kind of beverage. I also think that’s the reason why I always prefer single-serve coffee makers to other types of coffee machines.
Single serve coffee makers are very easy to use. Filling in water, inserting the coffee pod and a press of a button – that’s all it takes to create the perfect cup of coffee and other beverages.
If you are a coffee aficionado like me, I am sure that your day kick-starts with a sip of this liquid heaven. And a good coffee maker is what you need to ensure the perfect cup! Buying the right coffee maker will ensure that your days start with the perfect cup of coffee.
There are more than 12 single serve coffee makers being launched in the market every quarter, and each of them has one or the other innovative or advanced features. That having been said, not all single serve coffee machines offer the same taste and features.
Moreover, you have plenty of choice when you need a coffee maker. With so many options available, it can literally be a problem of plenty when it comes to deciding the best single serve coffee maker. Obviously, when you’re looking for a personal coffee maker, there are many choices other than a machine (such as a french press), but we’ve focused this article on finding the premium single serve machines for all budgets.
For past two months as we’ve been preparing this review, we have been testing some of the finest machines on the market and as a matter of fact, most of them sucked. Most of them are too messy, and brew coffee unevenly, resulting in deplorable coffee. That’s money lost! Of course, there are few gems out there too.
After a lot of trials and extensive research through several single serve coffee maker consumer reports, here is our review of some of the best single serve coffee makers of 2019.
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Best Single Serve Coffee Maker Reviews
Based upon my tests and trials, here are individual reviews of the best single serve coffee makers available in the market:
The Keurig K-Elite Brewing System will brew your favorite beverages in different cup sizes — 6oz, 8oz, and 10oz. Being a Keurig single cup coffee maker machine, you have the advantage of simply inserting the corresponding coffee pods and pressing its brew button. This is where the 75 ounce water reservoir helps a lot: you can brew several cups of coffee without having to refill the water tank.
The classic Keurig design of the machine takes no time to get used to. Thanks to the simple button layout, it feels easy to go through the whole brewing process. In addition to the cup size, you can choose your brew strength very easily. You can also schedule the coffee maker to turn on and turn off at particular times, offering the best accessibility. According to our tests, the brewing time was less than one minute and it doesn’t long to find a review on Amazon that backs this up.
We really liked the removable drip tray from two aspects. First, it can easily work with standard mugs as well as travel mugs. Second, you can easily clean the equipment without spilling over anything. Other noticeable features include its compatibility with My K-Cup Reusable Coffee Filter. If you like freshly ground coffee, you have an option for that too.
The Keurig K-Elite Brewing System is a compact brewer, with dimensions of 14 x 11 x 13 inches. It can easily be placed in the smallest kitchen, pantry, or office coffee station. Since they are available in four different colors– black, blue, rhubarb, patriot, coconut white, they can be easily color synchronized with existing kitchen equipment and décor.
In short, the Keurig K-Elite Brewing System offers all the benefits of a single serve K-cup Keurig machine, along with shorter brew time and higher brewing capacity. It’s definitely a prime contender for the title of the best single coffee maker of 2019.
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Those who like a somewhat classic design for coffee maker can go for the BUNN MCU Single Cup Multi-Use Home Coffee Brewer. The machine is comparatively expensive but you can brew coffee in different ways. It has built-in support for K-Cups, ground coffee, coffee pods, and water. The water drawer helps you have hot water on demand for your soups or oatmeal.
Despite being a single serve brewer, this one offers advanced functionalities. Its mug placement is so good that you can have your favorite coffee in bigger mugs too. Moreover, brew size can be selected between 4 and 14oz. As far as Ground Coffee brewing is concerned, you can make use of the Pulse Brew mode. We did try this because we always prefer a bolder cup of coffee.
We found that the brewing time is less than a minute and that can be a real boon when you are rushing to avoid peak rush hour traffic. This awesome brewing time of BUNN MCU Single Cup Multi-Use Home Coffee Brewer is achieved with help of the internal water tank. The tank is great at keeping the temperature consistent and hot. The MCU’s Multi-Drawer System is complete and easy to use, especially when you want to toggle between different modes of coffee brewing. With the help of its exchangeable drawers, you are able to brew not just coffee and tea from pods, but also use ground coffee, loose tea, and tea bags. Also it has a removable drip tray that facilitates really easy cleaning.
Despite the higher price, BUNN MCU Single Cup Multi-Use Home Coffee Brewer offers advanced options and best brewing performance, along with ultimate compatibility.
The Hamilton Beach 49968 FlexBrew is an excellent, budget-friendly machine to brew the best cup of ground coffee. Powered by its mesh scoop filter, you can try out different flavors for your beverages. If you think the process is tougher than the coffee pod system, you’re wrong. This coffee maker brings you awesome beverages without taking much time.
The FlexBrew has super elegant looks. As it lies on your kitchen counter, it is sure to enhance the beauty of your kitchen with its stylish design. It’s a perfect match for modern, contemporary, and chic new kitchens. It is surely a stylish addition to your kitchen design, due to the stainless steel finish.
You can adjust drip tray height according to the mug/carafe in use. While the maximum brewing capacity is 14oz, we really loved its option to create a bolder cup of coffee. When we tried the best coffee beans, the bolder cup was quite a heaven. It has just two buttons, making everything simple for beginners.
As far as brewing time goes, Hamilton Beach 49968 does everything in 90 seconds, which is great for ground coffee brewing. The complete stainless system is effective in maintaining the taste of your coffee and you’ll feel like a professional brewer as you drink coffee on the way into work.
Along with this, this single cup coffee maker comes with an efficient mesh scoop filter that allows you to use the coffee of your choice. It eliminates the need for paper filters, saving money and energy in the long run. It also boasts of an automatic shut-off system, which is ideal for youngsters who often waste energy when they forget to switch off the coffee machine.
We must say, compared to the features and build quality, the machine is available for a reasonable price and can be the best budget choice for ground coffee lovers. If you’re also interested in a dual model with the capability for both single cup and pots of coffee, be sure to check out our review of the Hamilton Beach 49976 FlexBrew Coffee Maker.
Prefer having an espresso machine with all the benefits of single-serve coffee makers? Then, Nespresso Pixie Espresso Maker is a perfect choice. If you can spend a bit more, this machine lets you use simple capsules to brew the perfect cup of espresso drinks. Obviously, the Nespresso can match the quality of coffee that comes from a super automatic dedicated espresso machine, when compared to others, the Nespresso Pixie Espresso Maker has great programmable options and an easy-to-use control panel not normally seen in a brewer of this class.
In spite of its ultra-compact design, the Nespresso Pixie comes with a powerful 19-bar pressure pump. We tried the different types of espresso drinks, and the aroma and taste were incomparable. It’s awesome too, because all you have to do is to press a single button. It is perfect for seniors and for people who are averse to complicated technology. It’s very easy to use as it offers a basic coffee maker with not many “extra” features packed in. Along, with ease of use it, offers very easy programming features that let you set your brewing machine.
The removable water tank is placed conveniently and it alerts you in case of low water level. The machine can also hold used Nespresso capsules in itself.
In case of both espresso and lungo, the brewing time didn’t exceed 30 seconds. This is great when you need a quick cup of espresso drink.
It has an automatic shut-off system, and the machine will automatically switch off after remaining idle for about nine minutes. Its auto shut-off system, compact design and stylish body make it ideal not only for regular homes but also for college dorms, hospitals, offices, and rental homes.
The only problem is that you may have to tolerate the extra noise the machine creates. Also, the price is somewhat higher, but reasonable when we consider its convenient features and the great-tasting coffee it guarantees.
Don’t worry if you’re not familiar with the manufacturer name. The Mr. Coffee Single Serve Coffee Brewer BVMC-KG6-001 is powered by the Keurig Brewing System, which ensures a brewing time of less than a minute. So, you have the convenience of choosing and using any of the K-Cups available in the market. Everything goes fine with the 40oz removable water reservoir, which can give you multiple cups without a refill.
There is no complaint about the quality of coffee that we get from this single cup coffee maker. It also managed to maintain the best temperature and taste over time. 6oz, 8oz, and 10oz are the available brew sizes in the maker, giving you plenty of options. While the actual design accommodates normal cups, you can remove the drip tray if you want to use bigger carafes or travel mugs.
Thanks to the Keurig system, everything in Mr. Coffee Single Serve Coffee Brewer BVMC-KG6-001 works as simply as 1,2,3. You can also use My K-Cup Reusable filter if you don’t want to spend on K-Cups on a regular basis. It also lets you make coffee, tea and hot chocolate using Keurig K-cups. With its large 40 oz tank, you are sure to save time and effort of frequent refilling.
This single-serve coffee maker also offers basic automation features, such as auto-turn-off at 2 hours. The only problem is that you cannot choose a brew strength.
Another pick from the versatile collection of Keurig, this Keurig K250 is a wonderful choice if you have a medium budget and are looking for a solid single serve k cup coffee maker. By paying some more amount than other picks, you can have all Keurig benefits and enhanced coffee brewing control. What we liked most in Keurig K250 Single Serve Programmable K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker is its option for Strength Control, Brewing Strength control, and hot water availability.
Every control in the machine can be done through the touchscreen. You can easily change the brew size and select the appropriate brewing strength. Different brew sizes are a great thing when you need more coffee. You can use K-Cup sizes of 4, 6, 8 and 10oz and Carafe sizes of 22, 26 and 30oz. We tried to brew one larger amount of coffee and the performance was quite impressive. With ten different brewing sizes available, it is one of the most versatile machines available in the market.
As for the dimensions, Keurig K250 Single Serve Programmable K-Cup Pod Coffee Maker is pretty big and has a corresponding water reservoir too. 40oz is enough even for a big home that consumes a lot of coffee.
Some other benefits of the machine include My K-Cup Filter compatibility, availability in multiple colors, high-altitude setting, and brewing time of less than one minute. The Keurig K250 Single Serve also has a modern black and white touch screen display, which makes it super easy to use.
Altogether, it makes sense to go for this machine if you need more coffee as well as bolder coffee.
We really love espresso drinks and we know that you do too. So, as the last pick in the list, we have Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo Coffee and Espresso Machine, which is a bit expensive. However, the machine can provide an awesome cup of coffee or an intense espresso in a few seconds. While the put-the-capsule-and-press-button mode hasn’t changed, the machine uses a patented technology for extraction.
During our testing, we noticed something: almost everything in Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo Coffee & Espresso Machine is automated. Depending on the Nespresso capsule that you insert, the machine will optimize many settings to give you the best coffee cup. It comes with two in-built brew sizes and either of them should give you multiple cups of coffee, thanks to the 54oz water reservoir on the device side.
It has a 40 oz removable tank that can be cleaned easily. And it comes with a single-button technology for uncomplicated usage. One of the most impressive features of the Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo Coffee and Espresso Machine is its patented “Centrifusion” extraction technology. With the help of this technology, it is able to spin the capsules up to 7,000 rotations per minute, creating the just right coffee blend for coffee enthusiasts like me!
If it’s not for the performance, we’d recommend Nespresso Vertuo Evoluo Coffee and Espresso Machine for its unique build and style. It’s gray and black colours easily blend into every kitchen interior and we’ve seen people using the device in offices too. As a welcome package, you get 12 Nespresso capsules as well, which is great, to begin with. Cutting the story this single-serve coffee machine can give you the best taste and performance. Check out our full review of the Vertuo Evoluo.
How Is a Single Cup Coffee Maker Different from a Normal Coffee Maker?
Wondering what’s so special about a single serve coffee maker? Obviously, you know that the machine will create the single cup of coffee with just a bit of hot water and one of many different coffee pods. Nevertheless, that’s not all you should know about these machines. If compared to the traditional types of coffee makers or even newer versatile machines like the Ninja Coffee Bar system, there are a few differences. We will have a look on what makes single-serve coffee maker unique from the other types. It should also help you decide whether you’ve to go for this type.
It needs to be noted that we are talking about drip coffee makers when we use the term ‘normal’. Don’t try to compare it with other types of coffee machines you may find on the market. So, shall we check out those differences?
Most of the single-serve coffee makers are pod-based. It means that you need to insert a coffee pod into the machine and press a single button. The machine will extract the coffee content from the pod and mix it with water. Then, the coffee is poured into the container that you have placed below. This is quite different from the drip coffee maker, where you need to provide ground coffee and have to make use of certain filters.
You don’t have to worry about coffee-water ratios when it comes to a single-serve machine. Even if there’s a removable filter, you can add a certain amount of coffee powder only. In case of pods, there is no need to worry about the amount of coffee. So, everything is more or less automated.
Because the machine is automated, there will also be removable water reservoirs, from which water will be taken as per the requirements. After a number of cups have been made, you just have to refill the water tank. There is no need to include hot water in the unit (although it will help speed things up) because each single cup coffee maker we reviewed is fully capable of heating the water. This is pretty convenient if you are someone who drinks multiple cups of coffee every day. Personally speaking, it’s great that I don’t have to go to my kitchen every time I need a cup.
Different single-serve coffee makers use unique extracting technologies. For instance, some devices are made for creating the perfect cup of espresso in a single click. In those cases, you don’t have to worry about anything, but simply insert the required pod and relax.
These are the basic differences that you can find between normal drip coffee makers and single serve coffee makers. They follow different working processes, bringing out with awesome results too.
What Are the Advantages of Using Single Serve?
Now, you may be in a dilemma of picking one from the variety of coffee brewers. If you are planning to buy a single serve coffee maker, these are the advantages you can have.
You are, on average, wasting a cup of coffee by not drinking the complete amount that you brew. This isn’t going to happen in the case of single serve coffee makers. First of all, you are inserting a pod that is made to create a certain amount of coffee. Also, you can choose the desired brew size depending on your requirements. For someone who lives alone, this is going to be a good option, and also a way to save money. Just take your favorite single serve k-cup out out of storage, press a button, and you have the exact right amount of coffee.
Convenience at Its Best
If you have a coffee maker with removable water reservoir, single serve coffee maker is the most convenient way to brew a cup of coffee. All you need to do is inserting the favorite coffee pod — or refill the reusable filter that machine supports — and pressing the brew button. When you are rushing to the office in morning, this is somewhat of ultimate convenience.
Easy Management and Cleaning
Except for the once-in-a-while cleaning, single serve coffee makers don’t make much of waste. You need not spend a lot of time in the cleaning process anyway. All you have to take care of the drip tray, only if there is something spilled on it. In some advanced machines, there are height-adjustable drip trays that can avoid the aforementioned situation of cleaning.
This is the main reason why I love my single cup coffee maker. It’s not like I restrict my tastes to coffee. There are times when I feel like having hot chocolate and other beverages. As long as I have a pod-based maker, it is just a pod-refilling away. Depending on the manufacturer, your coffee machine will have multiple options of coffee brewing and a huge collection of a pod to choose from.
Portability and Consistency
As you can guess, despite advanced functionality, single serve coffee makers are ultimately portable. You do not have to keep it in the same place. it can be moved according to your requirements. Then comes the sole element of consistency. As long as you are using the same coffee pods, you are going to have the same cup of coffee, every single day. This needs to be read along with the aspect of the versatile collection too.
Don’t you think these advantages of single serve coffee makers are impressive enough?
How to Choose the Single Serve Coffee Maker?
Here are a few things you should know and factors to consider before purchasing the best single serve coffeemaker for you. We’ve made it crisp and short.
Brand and Type
There are different types of single serve coffee makers that can give you different types of coffee. If you are someone who likes espresso drinks, you need to go for a dedicated espresso single serve coffee maker. On the other hand, for standard purposes, the common machines would do the job. Also, depending on personal taste preferences, you can also choose between the brands like Keurig, Nespresso, and Hamilton Beach.
Compatibility with Brewing Methods
Although most of the single-serve machines are pod/capsule-based, not all machines are like that. So, before it is time to check out, you need to consider the compatibility aspect too. There are machines that let you use K-Cups while others allow you to use reusable My K-Cup filters. In some advanced cases, you also have one option to use fresh-ground coffee powder instead of coffee pods.
Water Reservoir Capacity
If you need the real convenience offered by single-serve machines, you need to confirm the required amount of water reservoir space. Suppose you are purchasing the coffee maker for a small home, where there are 3 coffee consumers. Then, it’s recommended to go for a water reservoir of 40oz or 50oz, where you don’t have to refill the tank frequently.
Brewing Sizes and Controls
Brewing Size is important, because you may not need the same quantity of coffee all the time. In that case, make sure that the machine lets you brew coffee at different quantities — say, 6oz and 8oz. If you are getting an advanced brewer with high-performance, you can also look for Carafe-size brewing sizes. It’s even great if you can have a machine with adjustable brewing sizes.
Coffee Brewing Control
There are a few factors that can affect the quality of the coffee/espresso that’s made. For instance, machines may have an option to select the strength of the coffee. Even if it’s a Bolder button, it feels good to have a bolder cup of coffee at times. You can also go for machines with different extraction systems, according to the drink you really need.
Operating Costs of the Brewer
This is quite a relative topic because everyone brews coffee in a different way. For instance, if you use coffee maker only with pre-packaged coffee pods, you may have to rethink your selection. However, you always do have an option to go for reusable filters and even ground coffee. The idea is this: even if you are purchasing a low-budget machine, you need to make sure that the prices don’t go off your actual budgets in long run.
Along with these, you should keep an eye on portability of design, build quality and the noise that it may create. In the end, you can surely have one of the best coffee makers.
As a long time coffee lover, I’ve been using two espresso machines and Keurig single-serve machines for around 2 years, and they have helped me to save a lot of money. Obviously, the consistent cup of coffee every morning has been quite useful too. So, although things may go off your budget at times, make sure that you choose the best single serve coffee maker for you. You are not only having great taste but making the right amount of coffee.
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