Single-dose pods are a new and innovative way to make coffee. They offer the convenience of single-serve drinks but without all the wasteful packaging – and they taste great, too.
Single-dose pods come in two types: those designed for use with pod machines like Keurig, and those designed for use in traditional single-cup brewers like Senseo or Nespresso (though you'll need accessory equipment).
In this article, we'll focus exclusively on single-dose pods made for use in pod machines. Keep reading to learn more.
What are single-dose pods and how do they work?
Single-dose pods are small, usually plastic packages containing finely ground coffee that you place into a pod machine to create a fresh cup of coffee. As the water is heated up, it passes through the pod which is filled with coffee. The grounds are released through special holes in the bottom of the pod, allowing them to steep in the hot water.
Image Credit: http://nespresso.com
You can use pods in most types of pod machines, though they are designed for use primarily in Keurig or Nespresso machines. Capsules and cups made for Senseo and other traditional brewers will also work, but you need a special accessory machine.
When you're finished brewing, you simply remove the empty pods and place them into your recycling bin. It's that easy.
How to use a pod machine for the perfect cup of coffee
Pod machines generally work the same way. They have a reservoir for water, a heater, a pod holder, and a lever or button where you put your cup.
Prepare your chosen drink by making sure you have enough water in the machine's reservoir, then fill your mug with ice and place it under the lever. When everything is ready, press down on the lever to brew your coffee or tea. Watch as hot water flows through the capsule and into your waiting mug.
With some models, pushing down on the machine's handle opens up holes in each pod which release ground coffee directly into the brewing cycle. On others, pods are punctured by needles on top of the machine.
Also, some machines have a removable reservoir to make it easy for you to clean periodically. Others require that the entire top portion of the machine be removed.
Single dose pods vs K-Cups
While single-dose pods are similar to K-cups, there are several key differences:
- K-Cups are made of plastic, while pods usually use a combination of paper and plastic. So they're recyclable (if you can separate them) but not as widely used as K-cups.
- Pod machines are generally cheaper than traditional brewers like Senseo or Nespresso, allowing you to save money over time, especially if you drink more than three cups of coffee every day.
- The machine takes up less counter space than Senseo or Nespresso brewers because all the water is stored in the base.
Best Coffee Makers
Understanding the features that make one machine better than another is the secret to finding the ideal coffee maker for you. Some of these features include the following.
The amount of water your machine can hold varies widely. For standard brewers, it's usually anywhere from 8 ounces to 10 cups. Pod machines generally have a reservoir that holds between 10 and 12 ounces at a time, making it easy for single people or couples to brew just one cup.
Generally speaking, once you fill your reservoir, the entire carafe will be filled – regardless of what size mug you use. So if you drink three mugs of coffee every day, make sure you get a machine with a large enough capacity. The same goes for pod makers – even though they are smaller machines, make sure their reservoirs are big enough to handle your needs.
Water filter types
Traditional brewers use a paper filter, while pod machines require a special type of water filter known as a permanent filter.
Permanent filters are more economical and environmentally friendly because you don't have to keep buying paper ones. However, they do need to be cleaned regularly for your coffee to taste its best.
Automatic shut off features
The vast majority of coffee makers come with some kind of automatic operating switch that will turn the machine off after a certain period. This is an important feature if you're forgetful about these types of things – no one wants to burn their house down by leaving the machine on. But keep in mind: once your drink brews, it's important to remove it from the carafe or machine right away. Leaving coffee on a hot plate will burn the liquid, while the machine could overheat and explode if left on for too long.
Learn more about the Best Coffee Makers here.
Image Credit: http://en.wikipedia.org
Alternative Uses of Coffee Maker
The coffee maker is not only for the coffee purpose there are several other uses of the machine. For example, you can make tea, hot chocolate, and even some types of food. In fact, you can cook oatmeal or mashed potatoes.
However, it is important to note that before cooking anything with your machine, you should only do so if the manufacturer's user manual allows it.
A few things to consider when you are cooking food in your machine:
- The amount of water that comes into contact with the ingredients is important. If you have too little, then nothing will cook. But if there's too much, it can overflow and cause problems on your countertop.
- Likely, the temperature of the components inside of your coffee machine won't get hot enough to cook some types of food. So you need to follow the instructions carefully, especially when using any type of appliance like a coffee maker for tasks outside their designated purview.
Learn more about alternative uses of coffee machines here.
Final thoughts on how to use single-dose pods
In conclusion, there are many different benefits you can get from a single-dose pod coffee machine. In general, they tend to be more simple and easy to use for people of all ages.
In addition, it is already pre-programmed on some models which makes it easier for users to quickly make a cup of coffee within a short period.
Finally, single-cup coffee machines are more energy-efficient and eco-friendly as a result of using pre-designed cups that have already been sealed.
For these reasons, it is important for you to consider investing your money into a reliable model if you want to start making coffee with pods at home.