Single-cup coffee makers are a fast and convenient way to brew just the right amount of coffee. Many can brew a cup in 1 minute or less, and also take up less space on your counter than bulky automatic drip brewers.
There are tons of options out there, each of which offers unique features and customization options. Let’s take a closer look at our 14 favorite models!
Keurig is the leading name in single-serve brewers. The K-Classic is a convenient way to enjoy your morning joe, with a large water reservoir, an easy-to-use interface, and a descaling indicator so you know when it’s time to clean the machine.
The Cuisinart SS-10P1 is compatible with all K-Cups and single-serve pods, and also comes with a filter so you can brew from fresh ground coffee. Not only does it brew quickly but you can program also it up to 24 hours in advance so your coffee is ready and waiting in the morning.
This versatile Hamilton Beach coffee maker has an adjustable drip tray, so it fits tall travel mugs but won’t splash when brewing into shorter mugs. It’s fast-brewing, too, with a reusable scoop filter that makes it easier to get the ideal coffee to water ratio every time.
You get lots of options for customizing your coffee with the Keurig K-Elite. It has multiple cup sizes, a strength selection option, and even gives you the choice of making iced coffee. The hot water dispenser is a helpful feature, too, and the built-in water filter removes impurities that can alter your drink’s flavor.
The Keurig K-Select is intuitive to operate and compact enough to fit easily on your kitchen counter. It brews straight into travel mugs, with 4 size options and strength selection for customizing your cup. The super-fast brew time is especially helpful when you’re in a rush in the morning.
For travelers and office workers, the AdirChef Grab N’ Go Personal Coffee Maker is our top choice. The included insulated travel mug is built to fit your car’s cupholder. You can take the whole coffee maker with you if you’d rather. This durable, compact coffee maker fits easily in your backpack or suitcase and won’t break during the journey.
The convenience features of this Sbloy Single Serve Coffee Maker are its strongest features. The reservoir comes out and has a stepped design so you can easily tell exactly how much water you put in. It brews just 3 minutes from either K-Cups or ground coffee. The compact design is ideal for dorm rooms, RVs, and other places space is at a premium.
The attractive design of the Mueller Single-Serve coffee maker will look right at home in any kitchen. It’s not just about looks, either. The simple operation, removable reservoir, and energy-saving auto-shutoff are all things we love about this device.
Here’s another all-in-one option that’s great for travelers. This Black+Decker Coffeemaker is sized to fit the 16-ounce travel mug that comes with it. You’ll also get a permanent filter for ground coffee, though it’s compatible with pods, too, if you prefer to use those.
The Mixpresso Single-Serve Coffee Maker is compatible with K-Cups from all brands. This includes the second-generation K-Cups, as well as reusable K-Cup filters (though that doesn’t come with it). Its heating element reaches optimal brewing temperature in just 30 seconds, while the removable reservoir holds enough water for up to 6 brews.
Most single-serve brewers can’t give you a full carafe, but the Keurig K250 is an exception to this rule. Along with 4 single-cup sizes, it can also brew in full batches up to 30 ounces at a time. The touchscreen interface makes choosing your coffee’s strength and size easy.
While they might seem like complex machines, the internal operations of a single-serve coffee maker are surprisingly simple. Water is pulled from the reservoir and passed through a heating element. This hot water is then injected into the K-Cup through a tiny hole, where it mingles with the ground coffee and flows out the other side into your cup.
From a user perspective, the operation is even simpler. All you have to do is follow these steps:
It depends on what you’re looking for out of your coffee maker. From a cost perspective, single-serve coffee makers have a similar price range to automatic drip machines, so you don’t need to spend more for speed and convenience.
Like any brewing method, single-serve makers have their strengths and weaknesses. While they’re not the perfect choice for everyone, there are settings and situations where a single-serve brewer is definitely worth the investment. These include:
Still not sure if this is the right choice for you? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons to help you decide.
Pros and Cons of a Single-Serve Espresso and Coffee Maker
One Cup Coffee Maker: Advantages and Disadvantages
How Do Keurig Coffee Brewers Work?
How to Brew with a Keurig K-Cup Coffee Maker