Best Coffee K-Cup Pods 2017: Top 5+ Recommended and Reviews

I love my 4-Cup Coffee Maker. Especially when I have guests who enjoy drinking coffee and I make it for everyone.

However, it came to my attention that most times when I am alone, I drink tea more than coffee, because why make a lot of it when I only need one cup for myself. I end up tossing the rest in the sink, and that is wasting good coffee.

So, I got myself a Keurig 2.0, a single-cup brewer that uses the famous K-Cup pods for making all kinds of beverages.

You know how intrigued I am by something new, and how I always like to test exciting products.

This time, I gave myself a mission to find the best K-Cups to use and surprise my family or guests next time they come for a visit.

Short Info About Keurig Company

Originally, the Keurig, Inc. company was founded 1992 in the USA and started producing single-serve brewers and K-Cup pods.

They targeted the office market for its practicality in making a single fresh cup of coffee and hoped to take some of the market share that Starbucks was holding.

They did not know how popular these brewers would become and as a result of that, they started manufacturing brewers for home use, as well as K-Cup pods of various flavors, even for hot chocolate and teas.

In 2006, the Green Mountain Coffee Roasters company bought Keurig, Inc. and that lead to rapid growth of both companies until 2014, when they finally blended under a single name, Keurig Green Mountain, famous today.

Now, they manufacture numerous products, K-Cup pods still being one of them, with so many various options and flavors famous around the globe.

What You Need To Know About K-Cups

In looks, these single-serve coffee containers do not appear to be anything special.

A plastic cup with a paper filter inside, filled with either coffee, tea leaves, cocoa, fruit powder, chocolate, etc. and with an aluminum lid on top to keep the freshness inside and air, moisture and light outside.

See Also: Best Green Tea Powders

How Do The K-Cups Work?

The principle is very simple:

The machine that brews the coffee beverage pierces the top foil with a spray nozzle while piercing the bottom plastic cup with a discharge one, carefully, so the paper filter doesn't pierce as well.

Then hot water sprays inside the cup under high pressure and through the filter producing the wanted drink enough for a single-cup serve. (see also the best tea kettles​)

The Cost Problem of K-Cups

When I first started browsing and checking prices, I was surprised at the difference I noticed, and it wasn’t just me.

I know when my husband gets his coffee beans for his French press, he doesn't spend as much or pays a certain amount for one pound, while I noticed the cost being the same for a 10-20 pack of K-Cups.

However, I had to add the personal coffee drinking habits we have in our house and consider the same in an average household because they do matter when calculating prices.

If your family drinks a lot of coffee, then there are two choices; you either try to hunt sales and best prices for certain packs of K-Cups, or you use a 4-Cup Coffee Maker.

I even managed to find an interesting calculator that compares the average cost-per-cup with the machine and daily use, giving you a suggestion on what would suit you best.

But it all comes down to personal choices you make. However, if you decide to go with K-Cups, be prepared to pay a bit more for the convenience, and the pleasure they will give you.

See Also: 

Environmental and Health Problems of K-Cups

Environment

Note: Stronger language and violent graphic used

The environmental repercussions of using the K-Cups are enormous because of the amount of plastic waste coming from coffee pods. It would not be such a huge problem if the plastic used was biodegradable (though, some of the companies did start producing those).

But most of them aren't and the number of K-Cups sold in a year is enough that if we place the cups inside each other, it would be sufficient to circle the equator 10,5 times. That is only for one year, and it affects even everybody.

You must be wondering, why on Earth I purchased the machine when the data is so alarming. One reason for that – recycling. Even though I know that most don’t think of doing that because it counts as a chore, I try to be a conscious and a responsible user.

So, the brands I am browsing and choosing have recyclable plastic, and after each coffee or tea, I use my kitchen trash bin to do this:

Health

Both, the plastic and the aluminum are the biggest issues here:

Thankfully, the Keurig uses BPA-free plastic for its pods, but there are so many other companies that aren't.

  • Aluminum lid for the K-Cups is rumored to affect the brain with longer exposure causing Alzheimer’s, depression, anxiety, autism and even autoimmune disease.

However, whether this is true or not needs to be further tested, but so far, there is no cause for concern.

See Also: Some of the Best French Press Coffee Makers

Top 5 Best Coffee K-Cup Pods of 2017 – My Reviews

With getting the Keurig Coffee Maker for myself, I got it for my family as well, so in testing these K-Cups, I am hoping to find some flavors my husband and boys will want to try as well.

So, in this research and taste testing, I had them help me choose the ones that left the best impression on them.

The list looks like this:

1. Death Wish Coffee Single Serve Capsules - Caffeine Boost For Tired Minds

Image Credit: Amazon.com

What caught my eye about this product is that the coffee beans are certified organic and that every one of the ten capsules was tightly sealed. The amount you can get from one pod is 8 ounces, which is a larger cup.

My husband was the one to try the taste and even though it did not give him a big caffeine kick, he did enjoy the taste saying that it was decent, bold and strong, but not bitter. He felt refreshed and is now willing to drink a cup from time to time instead of his French Press one.

What I liked about these coffee K-Cups is that the plastic is recyclable and it fits my Keurig 2.0.

I did have a slight problem while I was making the coffee once. It seems that the grind is too finely done in the cups so when the hot water was supposed to go through the filter, because of the pressure, I had a little leak in the machine.

Also, the good thing is that if the taste of this particular blend doesn't suit you, there is a 60-day window to return it.

Things I liked

  • Organic coffee beans
  • K-Cups tightly sealed
  • Amount fit for large cup
  • Good taste, not bitter
  • Plastic is recyclable
  • 60-day return window

Things I didn’t like

  • Slightly expensive
  • Lack of caffeine boost
  • Possible leak problem
  • Need to separate parts before recycling

2. Coffee Variety Sampler Pack - Variety For Finding Your Perfect Taste

Image Credit: Amazon.com

This is a pack of 40 different coffee flavors. I got this so my boys could try them out and maybe start drinking this type instead of the instant one they usually drink. It was fun for them to try everything because there were no duplicates. The decaf and tea one I claimed for myself.

I am happy to say that most of the times I heard a ‘Mmmmm’ sound come from the kitchen, but there were occasional ‘Yucks’ as well. Unfortunately, some did not work with my Keurig even though it says that they are 2.0 compatible.

What you might need to know is that these K-Cups are repacked and not in original packaging, but they are the original blends. No pack is the same though, so you might get one with a tea cup as I did. Or you might get a case with all coffee pods, you never know. For some the not-knowing is fun, for some, it is not, so keep that in mind.

The cups are recyclable, but you have to separate the foil and filter from it first.

Things I liked

  • Various coffee flavors
  • Original coffee blends
  • Affordable
  • Amount fit for average cup
  • Fun to taste
  • Plastic is recyclable

Things I didn’t like

  • K-Cups are repacked
  • Flavors are random
  • Some were not for Keurig 2.0
  • Need to separate parts before recycling

3. The Original Donut Shop Regular Medium Roast Coffee - Classic Coffee Taste For Every Day

Image Credit: Amazon.com

These 72-pack K-Cups are filled with medium roast high-quality Arabica beans with no artificial ingredients added. It's a regular one so there is an average amount of caffeine in it with a larger amount of coffee inside so you can make a large cup (12oz) of coffee.

I was the one to try this coffee first, and it happened at the moment that I was eating a slice of Tiramisu cake with it. The taste of the coffee was just right, not too strong and not too bitter, so it complimented the taste of the cake perfectly. So, I served it the same for my boys and hubby, and they enjoyed it.

The cups are Keurig 2.0 compatible. However, there was a problem with them. More accurately, the foil covering the cups was too thin that it tears too much when the machine pierces it. More than once, my cup of coffee had some grind in it, and it was a hard to clean the coffee maker from it. Try putting a piece of tape on the foil. That solved the problem for me.

The cups are recyclable though, once you separate the foil and filter.

Things I liked

  • Medium roast regular coffee
  • Goes well with something sweet
  • Affordable
  • Amount fit for large cup
  • No artificial ingredients added
  • Plastic is recyclable

Things I didn’t like

  • Taste a bit bland
  • Foil lid too thin
  • Grind falls in the coffee cup
  • Need to separate parts before recycling

4. Caribou Blend Medium Roast Coffee - Rich Berry Notes For Any Time Of The Day

Image Credit: Amazon.com

What sets this brand from the rest is that this coffee is 100% Rainforest Alliance Certified. That means that the company takes care of the both, the environment and the people producing this coffee beans, and it does not just aim to sell.

The beverage is syrupy and creamy, and the taste is not bitter. It has a slightly sweet, spicy and berry note, with a hint of cocoa. I liked it, but my husband didn’t because he likes his coffee strong with no other flavor added.

What you need to pay attention to is the package and the condition of the K-Cups. If you notice some of them to be under pressure, be careful when you use them. The extra pressure of the hot water can in worst case make a mess in your coffee maker, or in the best case; you might find traces of grind in your cup.

The cups fit in my Keurig 2.0 and are recyclable if you separate the foil and the filter first.

Things I liked

  • Medium roast coffee
  • Sweet, spicy and berry note in flavor
  • Affordable
  • Amount fit for an average cup
  • Rainforest Alliance Certified
  • Plastic is recyclable

Things I didn’t like

  • Flavoured taste not fit for all
  • Some K-Cups can be under pressure
  • Grind falls in the coffee cup
  • Need to separate parts before recycling

5. Eight O’Clock Original Keurig K-Cup Medium Roast Coffee - Traditional Taste With A Fruity Note For Relaxed Feeling

Image Credit: Amazon.com

This blend has been around for a long time now and has a reputation for a classic coffee taste with medium roast Arabica beans. There is also a slightly sweet and fruity note to the coffee that is very discreet but adds complexity to the taste. It’s a big pack of 72 K-Cups in 6 separate packages.

Surprisingly, both of my boys like this taste. However, it becomes messy occasionally when they try to make it.

Seems like that the grind is too fine to have a certain amount of water go through the filter, or there is just too much coffee in a single K-Cup, so there is always grind in the cup and grind left in the coffee maker. I have to clean it each time that happens.

When I put it on a slow brew though, it works as it should, but the coffee is stronger like that, and only my hubby can drink it.

The K-Cups are recyclable when you separate the foil and the filter from the plastic.

Things I liked

  • Medium roast coffee
  • Traditional coffee taste
  • Sweet and fruity flavor
  • Affordable
  • Amount fit for an average cup
  • Plastic is recyclable

Things I didn’t like

  • Flavoured taste not fit for all
  • Some K-Cups have grind problem
  • Grind falls in the coffee cup
  • Coffee maker needs frequent cleaning
  • Need to separate parts before recycling

Mission Accomplished

This K-Cup testing went even better than I imagined.

I got my hubby to try another kind of coffee, and he liked it. I also got my boys to stop drinking the instant kind because they loved the various flavors and the quality the K-Cups have and each now has a new favorite brand.

Each of these K-Cups is a winner because we all have different taste and enjoy the different flavor and I suggest you try various ones before settling on a specific one.

With that thought, the Coffee Variety Sampler Pack is a great start, because, as one of my friends said:

“There is no bad coffee. The taste always depends on the mood while you are drinking it.”

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Barbara Whitney
 

For the last 20 years, I’ve been cooking, preparing, researching, and gathering recipes, tools, and knowledge about food and the way we prepare it. Raising two lively boys and spoiling one great husband later, it’s safe to say that I’ve optimized my kitchen to deliver the best possible meal, no matter the occasion.

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