Coffee Pods vs K-Cups – What’s the difference?
Even though people generally don’t realize there’s a difference between a coffee pod and a K-Cup, lately we’ve noticed a real confusion when trying to explain what a coffee pod and a K-Cup are. That’s why we’ll try to familiarize you with some main differences, advantages, and disadvantages when it comes to these types of single-serve coffees.
How do you mean I can’t put a coffee pod in a K-Cup machine?
Exactly like that. You can try to put a coffee pod in a K-Cup machine, or a K-Cup into a coffee pod, but you won’t really get what you thought you would. K-Cup machines and coffee pods can switch their roles only if you have an adapter or a brewer that supports both coffee pods and K-Cups.
So, what are they? Difference and Comparison
On one hand, a coffee pod or a coffee pad provides you with coffee that comes to you sealed and wrapped with filter paper. It usually comes in a soft flat round package. Depending on the producer, they can be either packed loosely in a large resealable bag or individually wrapped with foil.
On the other hand, a K-Cup is a type of coffee package that resembles a cartridge, with a plastic ring and a foil top. In a large number of cases, it is a plastic cup filled with sealed coffee. The capsule itself has the filter material in it, in order to keep the coffee contained during the brewing process. When a K-Cup is placed into a brewer, the lid and the bottom of the cup are punctured by two needles. This way, the coffee can flow into the top and extract the coffee.
The coffee pods were used for a long time before Keurig K-Cups were brought to the market. Ever since it’s been difficult to get them on the market because of the lack of specification. Because the available pod brewers usually weren’t good enough. The first brewers that made a great success both in the United States and in Europe were Melitta and Philips Senseo brewers. However, the limitation of different coffees was another reason why pods weren’t so popular.
K-Cups were launched to the market by Keurig Green Mountain and they represented the single-serve brewing capsules that instantly became the competition to the coffee pods. The popularity of K-Cups influenced a rapid increase in production of different brewers both for home and commercial use. Additionally, numerous companies decided to produce a wide variety of products that are compatible with Keurig, realizing the potential, so nowadays we can see a large number of capsules that absolutely resemble the original K-Cups even though they definitely cannot be considered as K-Cups because of the trademark.
Why should you choose coffee pods?
When it comes to main advantages of coffee pods, we should emphasize both the quality of the extracted coffee and the price range. Regarding the quality, coffee pods provide significantly better coffee extraction than the K-Cups because there is a larger surface area for water to contact the coffee. Additionally, since the coffee is not completely sealed in plastic, its aroma while brewing is richer. You can find some really affordable coffee pods that will provide you with flavorful coffee in no time. They are also ecologically friendly, since there is not much waste like in the case of K-Cups which come with a plastic cup, foil lid, and ring – the only part of the package that’s not biodegradable is the wrapper. Finally, even though they usually cannot be found in grocery stores, you can order them online.
Why should you choose K-Cups?
Probably the most important advantage of a K-Cup is the fact it comes in a form of a self-contained capsule, which makes it highly convenient. Additionally, K-Cups offer an incredibly wide variety of blends and flavored coffees as well as numerous roast options. Finally, some relatively cheap K-Cups have found their way to the market so that you can enjoy an acceptable cup of your favorite coffee which you can easily find in grocery stores.
I like that you mentioned how convenient K-Cups are because they have so many different flavors and blends. I like a certain kind of blend, but I never had time in the morning to make coffee before I go to work. If I got some K-Cups online, I could make my preferred blend and still have plenty of time to get to work.
Both K-cups and pods are convenient products, but they come with one major downfall: they inherently create a ton of waste. In a world where we are trying to reduce our impact on the environment, it seems counterproductive that these products continue to grow in popularity. Perhaps that is why instant coffee is more popular around the world as an on-the-go solution to getting a great cup of coffee.