The perfect way to start the day is with freshly brewed hot coffee. To all the coffee lovers who crave café-style coffee every morning but can’t brew a whole pot, here we present our carefully curated list of the five best single-serve coffee makers.
These cozy single-serve coffee makers will make the ideal addition to every household’s kitchen.
Single-serve coffee makers can prepare 5-12 ounces of fresh brew in one go. This makes them the best choice for coffeeholic who must have a fresh cup every single time.
Don’t worry if you have limited counter space, for these can snuggle into any nook or corner of your kitchen.
Some of these little coffee treasures can come in handy for Cafés and bistros, all thanks to the specialty drinks they can brew in no time.
Some can even accommodate pots, one more feature in their favor. Come on, what more do we need?
1. Let’s put the Coffee Maker to the test
1.1 Coffee pods v/s Reusable Filters
Most single-serve coffee makers provide options for both single-use coffee pods and reusable filters. We can choose either one according to our coffee preferences and convenience.
Single-use coffee pods come in small plastic packaging that can turn into coffee instantaneously. You have to place a pod in the space provided, and the machine will brew coffee in a few minutes.
You can easily buy a pack of pods from your nearest convenience store. Most single-serve coffee makers are not coffee capsule-specific, so you don’t have to look for matching brands.
The single-serve coffee maker also has space for reusable ground coffee filters. You can pick your kind of coffee bean and make freshly ground coffee.
This makes your morning coffee fresh and flavorful. Also, it is sustainable compared to coffee pods, which generate excess plastic waste.
1.2 Water Reservoir
Single-serve coffee makers have a range of water reservoir capacities that you can pick from. The larger the reservoirs, the fewer times you will have to refill. Some water reservoirs have attached handles, so you can easily remove and refill them.
However, a few have permanently attached reservoirs or no reservoirs at all. If your coffee maker does not have a reservoir, measuring the correct amount of water for every cup you brew is tedious.
1.3 Brew Settings
1.3.1 Ounces of Coffee
Some single-serve coffee makers can brew coffee of varied sizes from 2 ounces (equivalent to a double espresso shot) to 16 ounces (which fills your travel mug).
1.3.2 Specialty drinks
Most of the coffee makers offer coffee and latte options. You can make a regular coffee or a bold brew using the coffee option, while some latte options offer iced brews.
Some single-serve machines come with a milk frother, while some need one to be bought and attached separately.
You can make a foamy and creamy Cappuccino using the milk frother or customize any cups with extra foam.
1.4 Time efficiency
Compared to traditional coffee machines, these single-serve coffee makers can brew swiftly. They can make you a cuppa in under two minutes.
A specialty coffee system offers spectacular brews with a thermal flavor extraction duo mechanism. You can use coffee pods and coffee grounds to make different sizes and styles of brew.
2.1 Salient Features:
You can brew four different sizes with the pods, while you can make nine different sizes with the ground coffee. This single-serve coffee maker’s four extravagant styles are classic, rich, over-ice, and specialty.
This single-serve coffee maker comes with additional components to make every cup of coffee simply delicious and unique:
- Carafe – for large-capacity brew
- Ninja smart scoop
- Froth whisk
- Brew basket
- Ninja pod adapter.
Worry not; we will explain the above equipment and its use further.
2.2 Coffee grounds:
When brewing with the coffee grounds, insert the brew basket in its allocated space. Place a number four filter paper cone inside the basket and take note to cover along the seams.
You can choose any size between a cup, a travel mug, or a carafe to fill your ground coffee. It comes with instructions on the measurements of grounds you need (use the smart scoop to measure) for the different sizes.
2.3 Brew Settings:
You can also modify your brew strength and richness by choosing the four styles above. For example, ‘rich’ gives you a bolder brew than ‘classic.’ For an iced coffee, select the ‘over ice’ setting.
The specialty setting gives you a thick, strong brew that goes perfectly well with froth milk to provide a café-like drink in the comfort of your home.
2.4 Coffee pods:
When brewing with the coffee pods, open the handle above, insert the brew basket, then the Ninja pod adapter, and keep the pods inside.
Make sure to place the adapter only after you insert the brew basket. Close the handle, and the system automatically recognizes that you’re using a pod.
2.5 Brew sizes:
This single-serve coffee maker offers all these- 6,8,10, or 12-ounce brew options. After choosing your brew size, you can select one of the four styles as you did with the pods and get an equally flavorful brew, even with the coffee pods, all thanks to thermal flavor extraction.
2.6 Milk frother:
To enhance your drink further, add creamy froth milk to your cup. You can easily make creamy, frothy milk with the foam Whisk we get with the system.
2.7 Water reservoir:
It has a 60-oz water reservoir, which is convertible. As in, you can attach it to the side or to the back to squeeze into your counter space. It can be easily refilled as it is detachable.
- It has a ‘keep warm function that can keep your brew warm for hours, so reheating your pot on the next serves is unnecessary.
- It can also dispense hot water at two temperature settings – hot and boil- suitable for making tea or soup.
- There is a ‘Delay Brew’ option to preset the setting for a brew later that day.
- It has a removable drip tray, which can be easily cleaned using a dishwasher.
Ninja Dual Brew Pro is the best single-serve coffee maker for coffeeholics who love delicious coffee of different specialties and for offices and small cafes where the carafe is handy.
This Smart single-serve coffee maker is based on Brew ID technology, enabling you to make a perfectly customized cup of coffee with a distinctive aroma.
The Brew ID technology can recognize the brand and roast of your pod and automatically choose the brew settings recommended by the coffee-roasting expert who created it.
3.1 Salient Features:
3.1.1 K cup pods:
Keurig K coffee maker uses multi-stream technology, which extracts the full flavor and aroma from each K cup pod by equally saturating the grounds in the K cup pods using multiple streams.
3.1.2 Brew settings:
You can further improve the quality of your drink by trying out your favorite permutation and combination of strength, temperature, and cup sizes.
It provides five strength options ranging from ‘balanced’ to ‘intense’ and six temperature settings. This allows you to Brew Over Ice or Max Hot, iced coffee, or piping hot coffee; the choice is yours.
3.1.2 Brew sizes:
Like the other single-serve coffee makers, the Keurig K coffee maker offers 5-cup sizes per standard brew sizes from 4 to 12 oz. Keurig K cups are available in the market with this sleek coffee maker.
3.1.3 Water reservoir:
Keurig K Supreme has a 78oz water reservoir, ideal for 9 cups.
3.2 Why is Keurig K smart?
Smart comes from the inherent ability of this single-serve coffee maker to connect and operate with the help of a smartphone.
You can store your favorite brews on your smartphone by adding the respective settings for each brew to the mobile app.
Thus, you schedule ahead or brew your favored coffee even before getting out of bed.
Keurig K-Supreme Plus SMART is compatible with both Android and Apple smartphones. Thus, you can connect it with iOS 11 and higher or Android 6 and higher.
Keurig K-Supreme Plus SMART is optimized for homes with 2.4 GHz Wi-Fi networks and WPA2-PSK security. But, Keurig K will not work with 5GHz Wi-Fi.
That’s not it. It gets cooler! Keurig K Supreme Plus SMART can also respond to your Alexa voice commands.
The Brew ID technology tracks the number of K cup pods left out and is smart enough to automatically re-order your choice of K cup pods. In addition, it can do smart auto-delivery at the click of a button.
There is a ‘See It In Your Space’ feature, which you can access at Keurig.com. This feature will check if the Keurig K-Supreme Plus SMART coffee brewer will fit into your precious counter space.
- Specialty drinks like Latte and Cappuccino cannot be made in this Keurig K coffee maker as it does not have an attachment for a milk frother.
- The brew-over-ice option is for the tired days when you need a refreshing and delicious cup of iced coffee.
Keurig K-Supreme Plus SMART is the best single-serve coffee maker for bed coffee lovers and gadget geeks.
This single-serve coffee maker cum espresso machine uses centrifugation extraction technology (7000 rotations per minute) to provide optimal freshness and rich crema to every brew.
An intelligent extraction system automatically recognizes each capsule with its unique barcode.
4.1 Salient Features:
4.1.1 Coffee capsules:
This single-serve coffee maker takes only 15-20 seconds to preheat before recognizing the barcode, allowing it to set its parameters accordingly without manual inputs.
After brewing, the capsule is automatically ejected into a large container that looks similar to the water reservoir.
4.1.2 Brew sizes:
Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso machine can brew three drink sizes- 1oz Espresso, 8oz Coffee, or 14oz Alto.
You can make a drink of any cup size between 1oz and 14oz. This is possible with two different capsule sizes- the small one for single Espresso shots and the large one for Coffee and Alto. But it doesn’t stop at that.
4.1.3 Water reservoir:
The water reservoir capacity is 40 oz, which is suitable for brewing around 5 cups per refill. Plus, it is easily removable.
- This coffee machine comes with a welcome set of 12 Large Nespresso Vertuo single-serve coffee capsules, which offer the finest roast and ground coffee in exciting individual aromas to try out.
- The downside is that it can only use the Nespresso Vertuo capsules.
- It has a cup support is adjustable to hold three different brew sizes.
- The Nespresso Club in the US provides a recycling service for the capsules to all the Club members.
Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso machine is the best single-serve coffee maker for those coffee addicts who need a shot of double Espresso to kick start their day and a steaming cup of regular coffee on coffee breaks.
It is a programmable brewing unit that can be used to customize your cup of coffee from a wide spectrum of settings.
5.1 Salient Features:
5.1.1 Pods + Ground Coffee:
This single-serve coffee maker fits a single-cup pod of any brand, including Keurig K-Cup pods. It also has a HomeBarista Reusable Filter Cup, which uses ground coffee.
5.1.2 Brew sizes:
The unit has five different beverage size settings- (4 ounces to 12 ounces cup size). It has a Backlit blue LCD that displays settings for selecting brew sizes. It also has an adjustable brewing temperature setting, allowing regular and hot brews to be made.
5.1.3 Water reservoir:
It has the largest capacity water reservoir of all the single-serve coffee makers, making it convenient for day-long use. The 72 oz water reservoir capacity is sufficient for a pot and more.
- The single-serve coffee maker dispenses hot water by pressing the ‘Hot water’ button. This hot water can prepare soup, tea, hot cocoa, and more.
- This single-serve coffee maker has a rinse function, making cleaning the brew chamber between brews of different flavors easy. Thus, it ensures that the flavor of the previous brew does not tarnish individual brews’ flavor.
- It comes with a removable drip tray, which catches hold of the spillage. So, you can remove the tray and clean it. To accommodate travel mugs, you would have to remove the drip tray.
Cuisinart Premium Single-Serve Coffee Maker (SS-10) is the best single-serve coffee maker for those who find it exhausting to refill frequently. This programmable single-serve coffee maker is well-known for its ease of use.
Making coffee in your home kitchen that is Café style is a boon. This is possible with Keurig K Cafe’s multi-purpose, single-serve coffee maker that can make regular coffee, creamy lattes, and frothy cappuccinos.
5.1 Keurig K cafe Features:
5.1.1 Pods + Ground coffee:
Keurig K cafe is particular about the pods and filters used for ground coffee. It can use all K-cup pods. To improve the coffee quality, the espresso roast K cup that provides a strong flavor can be used.
Likewise, it can only use Keurig My K-cup Universal Reusable Coffee Filter, which must be bought separately.
5.1.2 Cup size:
There are four cup sizes. This coffee maker can fill 6 to 12-ounce K cups. Can also serve single espresso shots
5.1.3 Milk frother:
This single-cup coffee maker comes with a removable milk frother that is super efficient on any milk, be it hot or cold, soy, skimmed, almond, etc., making the richest crema to your specialty drinks.
It can be taken out from the coffee machine for cleaning. It is dishwasher-safe, so you don’t have to scrub it manually. It comes with a cup for frothing, which is also dishwasher-safe.
5.1.4 Water reservoir capacity:
This single-serve coffee maker has a 60oz water reservoir with a top handle, making removing it easy.
- There is no temperature control or settings for iced coffee, nor can it fit a carafe.
- ‘Auto-off’ feature to turn off the coffee maker 2 hours after the last brew, no auto-on
- Descaling alert for brewing maintenance remainder and even a low water level alert.
- It has a ‘strong brew’ option that can serve bold, full-flavored coffee in a single cup, the best-tasting coffee regardless of the cup size you opt to brew.
- It is a coffee machine with a large footprint, which can be difficult to fit into your precious counter space.
Keurig K cafe is the best single-serve coffee maker for those who like their coffee topped with rich crema, especially vegans.
This is the most versatile single-serve coffee maker with easy-touch programming. It goes in hand with their trademark, “How you brew is up to you.”
6.1 Trio coffee maker features:
6.1.1 K cup pods of Ground coffee:
Hamilton Beach Trio coffee maker offers duo sites and ‘trio’ ways of brewing coffee. The carafe side uses ground coffee to brew a pot of fresh coffee (12 cups).
The single-serving side can fit coffee cups and travel mugs – One cup of coffee brewed with a K cup pod or travel mug with your favorite ground coffee.
6.1.2 Brew strength:
To customize your brew strength, use the ‘Select-a-Brew’ option and have a regular coffee or a bold brew.
6.1.3 Water reservoir:
Each side of the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew has a separate water reservoir with a water window to show exactly how much water you have to fill.
Hamilton Beach FlexBrew has many accessories, such as a water filter, perm filter, carafe, and travel mug.
- It has a cup rest with a storage area to accommodate a brew basket or a single-serve pod holder.
- Easy-touch programming for brewing a pot, with the ‘Auto Pause and Pour’ option.
- Easy to clean.
Thus, Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio Coffee Maker is the best single-serve coffee maker for a family of coffee lovers with varying needs.
There are several single-serve coffee machines with an array of brew settings. However, your choice of the best single-serve coffee maker will differ according to your preferences and needs.
How much coffee is too much coffee, right? So, we leave the decision up to you.