If you take the time to calculate how much you spend each month in Starbucks or Costa, though…Well, that money might be better spent on acquiring a machine of your own.
Today, we’ll take you through 15 of the best single-serve coffee machines currently on the market. Check out our reviews so you can find the most suitable machine for your needs.
Before that, though, we’ll take a quick look at why these nifty little machines are so popular today…
Table of Contents
10 Best Single Serve Coffee Machine Reviews
1. One Of Our Top Picks | Keurig K-Classic Coffee Maker, Single Serve
Keurig is a market-leading brand in the world of one cup coffee maker.
Set-up couldn’t be simpler. The K55 takes 5-10 minutes to calibrate itself and you’re good to go.
- Extremely user-friendly
- Very simple to clean
- Substantial water reservoir for a one cup coffee maker
- Heats water very rapidly
- Works with any brand of K-Cups
- No variable brew strength
- Although it’s straightforward to clean, it requires regular attention inside and out
Some coffee makers can be fiddly and awkward. With Keurig, you’ll have no such problems. Pop in a pod and use the handy button controls to choose your brew size. In under a minute, your drink is ready.
The removable filter gives you a little more flexibility. Rather than being restricted to pods only, you can also opt for your blends if you prefer.
If you enjoy a cup of Joe, on the go, you’ll appreciate the stainless steel travel mug thrown in free of charge. Make yourself a piping hot drink for the daily commute.
With a generous 48oz water reservoir, you can get 6 cups in before you need to refill. It’s a smart move to clean your cup as soon as it’s done. If you put it off, it can be a bit of a struggle.
With no descaling functionality, you’ll need to get rid of the water by hand. Cleaning with vinegar is a good way to sidestep contamination.
For a budget maker that performs like a much more expensive machine, the Keurig K55 is tough to beat. Adaptable, powerful and allowing you a wide choice of beverage, the K55 brings the quality of the coffee shop into your home without breaking the bank.
2. Keurig K-Elite K-Cup Pod Maker
Keurig continually strives to expand and improve their wide assortment of one cup makers and with the K-Elite they’ve doubled down on adding a little more scope for tweaking than you’d expect from a one-cup machine.
- Brew K-Cup pods from 4oz through 12oz for more versatility
- Grab hot water on demand
- Substantial reservoir so make up to 8 cups before refilling
- Hot or cold coffee at the press of a button
- Jack up the strength if you like an added kick
- Not the cheapest option
You’ll have a choice of 5 cup sizes and you can fine-tune the strength and intensity of your beverage using the intuitive interface.
You can program your machine to come on and shut off so everything is fully primed when you get up in the morning or return from work later on.
The water reservoir can take almost 80 oz so you can rack up 8 large ones before you need to remove and refill the tank. If you need a simple burst of hot water, there’s a button for that, too.
The K-Elite is not just capable of hot beverages. If you want iced coffee the way it should be, hit the Iced button and you’re good to go.
As with all Keurigs, speed is uppermost and you’ll have fresh, steaming Joe in your mug within the minute making it the next best thing to instant but with a far deeper, richer taste.
The drip tray is also removable so you can slot in a larger travel mug fuss-free.
With many of the second-generation Keurig machines, the bar code technology tied you into a limited selection of pods. You can happily use non-proprietary pods in the K-Elite giving you the freedom to choose from over 500 different brands.
The K-Elite is finished in a highly attractive brushed metal so it will look at home in any kitchen. Since it occupies such a compact footprint, you’ll be able to leave this machine out proudly on display without feeling cluttered.
For a single-serve machine with a difference, the Keurig K-Elite is tough to beat.
3. Ninja Single-Serve, Pod-Free Coffee Maker Bar
Our top choice-maker without pods reviews is the enduringly popular Ninja giving you incredible choice at a price you’ll love.
Are you torn between hot and iced coffee? You don’t need to be any longer since you can get your drinks cold at the push of a button with no dilution.
- Integrated frother so you can enjoy milky lattes
- Fully customizable range of drinks for all the family
- Why choose hot or iced when you can have both?
- Pioneering extraction system delivers a robust flavor
- Super-simple interface ideal even if you hate tech
- Reusable steel filter means it’s a bit messy when emptying out
- Annoying degree of drippage after brewing
And if it’s a steaming cup of joe you’re looking for, you can tweak the Ninja in so many directions it will feel like you’ve got your mini-Starbucks at home but without the stiff daily bill.
You can choose from 4 brew sizes depending on how much caffeine you want down the hatch, roll with a classic or rich brew and decide whether you prefer your drink black or milky then hit the button while the Ninja delivers.
Want to get even more creative? The Ninja lets you experiment with layered drinks that catch the eye and tease the taste buds.
No product is perfect and the Ninja is prone to dripping slightly while the reusable filter makes for a messier experience than if you used pods but you’ll get the shower of benefits a pod-free unit provides, so we think that’s a fair trade-off.
The unit has a sleek black and chromed finish means it will stand out in any kitchen so what are you waiting for?
4. Hamilton Beach 49976 Flex brew 2-Way Brewer
If you can’t choose between enjoying full carafes of Joe or the convenience of one cup, why choose at all?
The Hamilton Beach FlexBrew offers you the best of both worlds. You can also opt for fresh grounds or K Cup pods for total versatility. As if that wasn’t enough, it’s incredible value for money, too.
- Dual functionality allowing you to brew a pot in the carafe or one cup on the opposite side of the machine
- Tweak the brewing strength rolling with regular or strong, according to taste
- Keep things simple with dedicated water reservoir for the carafe and one cup while viewing windows let you know when it’s time to add more cold water
- On-board storage for K Cup or grounds so keep everything to hand
- Takes up a fair amount of space on the work surface so make sure you can accommodate it
- Limited to using one side at a time
How To Brew K Cup Pods: Pour a maximum of 10oz of cold water in the reservoir on the right. Put the one cup holder into the opening with your K Cup pod added.
Close the lid and listen for the snapping sound letting you know the needle has pierced the pack. Hit single-serve then the Brew Now buttons and you’re good to go. For a stronger cup, press brew-strength until bold is displayed
If you want the shotgun service of a one-cup using either K Cups or fresh grounds and the convenience of brewing up an entire pot and leaving it to warm, the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew is the obvious solution.
There’s a digital clock that is easy to read and fully programmable. If you want coffee brewed at a predetermined time, simply ensure the reservoir is topped up with cold water and punch in the time up to 24 hours in advance.
Check out the FlexBrew today!
5. Keurig K575 Programmable K-Cup Coffee Maker
Keurig is a household name in the industry and with just cause. They make top-notch coffee makers which, while not exactly cheap, don’t cost the earth either.
The core function of this maker is one cup so it’s ideal for anyone looking for a super-swift caffeine fix without compromising quality.
- Oversized reservoir allowing you to brew up to 10 one cup coffee’s without needing to refill
- Jumbo touch screen is user-friendly and fully programmable
- 5 temperature settings along with strength control for maximum flexibility
- Choose from multiple cup and carafe sizes according to taste
- Automatic shut-off and energy-saving mode for safety and slashed power bills
- Choose from a broad range of superb Keurig accessories to complement your coffee maker
- Carafe sold separately if you want to brew up more coffee to leave warming
The large touch screen is a pleasure to use and perfect even if you’re not tech-savvy. The digital clock readout makes keeping tabs on the brewing time a cakewalk.
You can punch in the time and make sure that your maker switches on or off precisely when you need it. The energy-saving mode is a nice touch.
Using this machine couldn’t be easier. Just pop in your K Cup pods, punch the button and you’ll be drinking top-tier coffee in less than a minute.
You can tweak the strength along with the temperature so you can enjoy your cup of Joe just the way you like it without needing to head to Starbucks.
If you fancy brewing up a whole carafe instead, pick one up separately and harness your Keurig to make larger volumes on demand.
For a delicious one cup Joe without needing to take out a bank loan, give some serious thought to the Keurig K575. It delivers in fine style.
6. Nespresso VertuoLine Coffee and Espresso Maker
Next up is the VertuoLine from Nespresso.
Nespresso is a dominant brand in the industry and, although not cheap, their products offer performance and reliability.
While it isn’t cheap, if you consider the money you would otherwise spend in a coffee shop, the VertuoLine doesn’t seem like such a bad investment.
- Delivers a superb espresso with a thick layer of crema
- Grand Cru capsules thrown in so get drinking immediately
- Highly versatile making both regular coffee and espresso
- Aeroccino milk frother that also heats milk for latte and cappuccino
- Removable water tank for your convenience
- Very little noise or vibration in operation
- Quite a bulky unit
- Limited choice of capsules
You’ll get either a dinky 1.35oz espresso or an 8oz coffee. The addition of the milk frother allows you to add cappuccino and latte to your repertoire.
A welcome pack of 12 Grand Cru pods means you can enjoy fresh Joe straight out the box. Up to 20 used capsules will fit in the container before you need to empty it. Take note that only Nespresso VertuoLine capsules will fit in this machine.
You won’t need to worry about tweaking settings. There’s barcode recognition in place. Whatever the type of Joe, you’ll get the optimum brew fuss-free.
The Nespresso VertuoLine is a maker that polarizes opinion. As you can see, there are a few drawbacks that we have honestly highlighted. Overall, though, if your budget will stretch to it and you’re an espresso fiend, the VertuoLine is well worth the investment.
7. Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker
A real budget offering from Hamilton Beach next, this sleek one cup scoop maker.
- Adjustable tray suitable for different cup sizes
- Highly user-friendly
- Extremely simple to clean
- Variable strength to taste
- Scoop does double duty as the filter
- Coffee can taste weak so brew accordingly
- Watch out for overflowing
- Tends to splatter at times
Not everyone wants the restriction of a pod-based system. Sure, they taste great. But does your local store stock the capsules? Are they expensive?
With the scoop filter, you can choose the blend and flavor of coffee you need giving you much more flexibility while also saving a few dollars.
Although it’s not expensive, the slick stainless steel finish means this one cup maker will look good as well as serving up a tasty beverage.
The tray adjusts for different mug sizes. You can get an 8oz cup in 90 seconds and a 14oz travel cup in just 2 ½ minutes. That is no time at all for a top-class coffee.
The steel mesh scoop filter means there’s no ongoing expense or mess of paper filters either.
You can flick between regular for drip coffee or bold for decaf, finer blends or flavored coffee. This is a nice touch.
There’s no guesswork with 2 measuring lines showing you exactly how much coffee to use for the perfect cup.
The wide drip tray at the bottom deals with any excess spills. Watch out for any spattering, though.
If you want to experience the joy of a one-cup maker at home without needing to spend a fortune, this silver beauty from Hamilton Beach is well worth popping on your shortlist.
8. Cuisinart SS-10P1 Premium Single-Serve Coffeemaker Coffemaker
Rounding out our one cup machine reviews is a wonderful unit from Cuisinart, legends in the home appliances industry. This machine is not the cheapest but you’ll get outstanding Joe without needing to hit Starbucks every day.
- Very large 72oz reservoir a class leader
- Super-simple 1-touch operation
- Programmable to make cups at specific times
- Make use of any K-Cup
- Auto-rinse functionality reduces cleaning time and makes your life easier
The massive 72oz reservoir means this machine is ideal for big families.
Although it’s very rudimentary to get this machine working, it also comes with a high degree of programmable functionality. You can even instruct the machine to make a drink at a set time which is a lovely touch.
You’ll have a broad choice of drinks at your disposal. From K-Cups to ground coffee with the reusable filter, you can enjoy a strong, robust coffee any time you choose.
Tweaking the temperature allows you to enjoy iced or hot beverages.
For a flexible coffee making solution at a fairly keen price, the Cuisinart takes some beating.
9. AdirChef Grab N’ Personal Coffee Maker – Single Serve Coffee Maker
As we edge to the end of our best one cup maker no pods hunt, this AdirChef machine is almost laughably cheap. If you peg your expectations, this is a first-rate coffee maker while it lasts, but be fully prepared for a shorter lifespan than you’d expect from a more robust machine.
- Accommodates most mug sizes comfortably up to and including travel mugs
- Fully insulated travel mug thrown in so liven up your morning commute and start your day strong
- Hard-hitting performance but also highly portable so enjoy fresh coffee on road trips and vacations not just at home
- Everything you need to be included so gets brewing straight out the box
- Permanent filter for your convenience and the sake of the environment
- Some serious questions raised about lifespan but you need to be reasonable at this price-point
Aside from the price tag, less than a round of lattes from Starbucks, you’ll get a user-friendly and compact unit capable of making coffees up to 14oz in an attractive machine you wouldn’t imagine would be so cheap.
Incredibly, you’ll even find a travel mug included and you can choose from a half-dozen colorways so there’s something to slot in with just about any kitchen.
The permanent filter renders usage much cleaner and less task while you’ll also be doing your bit for the environment. Enjoy your coffee with a clean kitchen and an even cleaner conscience.
While you obviously can’t expect performance on a par with a five-figure super-automatic espresso machine, we feel this budget machine from AdirChef more than merits its place on our shortlist.
10. BLACK+DECKER Single Serve Coffeemaker
Synonymous with power tools, it might surprise you to find the legendary BLACK+DECKER venturing into the coffee vertical. This strong contender for the best single serve maker without pods brings all that engineering excellence to the fore, though, with this top-tier pod-less beast at an exceedingly reasonable price.
- Unbeatable brand heritage and a price to put a smile on your face
- Space-saving design and small footprint make this machine a superb choice for small kitchens
- Water heated to exactly the temperature you need for that golden cup of coffee every time
- Auto shut-off for your convenience and peace of mind
- Permanent mesh filter simplifies clean-up while also saving waste and helping you do your part for the environment
- As with all cheap one cup coffee makers without pods, you’ll have to accept a shorter lifespan in return for such value
You’ll get all the safety features you’d expect from a pricier machine along with the main things that count: first-class Joe provided at the push of a button without the endless expense of pods to worry about.
You brew straight into a 16oz mug and you’ll be free to use pre-ground coffee or even pods if you prefer that convenience and don’t mind the expense. You’ll get the best of all worlds with this BLACK+DECKER.
You won’t have the hassle or expense of replacement filters and you’ll also be able to slip this scaled-down machine into practically any small kitchen or dorm room without overrunning the space.
For the perfect combination of price, performance, and ease of use, we can’t recommend this one cup coffee maker without pods highly enough. Road test one at your earliest convenience!
Trending of One Cup Coffee Makers on the Market Today
When you are on the hunt for a product like a coffee machine, several key factors influence your decision:
Single-serve machines manage to hit all of those pain points without costing a fortune.
Keurig Green Mountain sits at the top of the pile when it comes to these innovative coffee machines. They managed to bring in almost $5 billion in revenue in a single year and much of this income is attributed to their K-Cup one cup machines.
How about the effect on the environment for the sake of convenience? These capsules are not biodegradable or recyclable. On the plus side, their clinical efficiency means they use very little electricity. There’s no need for them to keep a large pot of water heating.
While these machines have continued to rise in popularity, most of the leading manufacturers are now seeing something of a drop in sales. As the economy improves, people are more inclined to return to their favorite coffee shops.
Overall, though, these machines are certainly not about to fade away.
If you want a top-tier coffee without needing to hit the mall, read on for our exploration of the very best one cup machines available today…
- 6 Key Benefits of Single Serve Coffee Machines
To finish up, we’ll take a glance at some of the key benefits of buying a single-serve coffee machine…
1) Minimize Waste
If you live alone and like to drink coffee, the last thing you want is to brew up massive quantities you’ll end up wasting.
With a single server, you can brew up just the amount you need, no more and no less. This reduction in waste will save you money over time.
2) Prepare Your Brew With Ease in No Time At All
The majority of single-serve machines are a cinch to set up straight out the box.
When it comes to operation, just fill up the water, load the coffee, and hit a button In just 1 or 2 minutes, depending on the brand, you’ll have a first-class Joe, tea or chocolate at a fraction the price of a cup from your local coffee shop.
Functionality varies, usually according to price. The better machines allow you a great deal of scope with programming so you can set the machine to serve you up at designated times.
3) Get The Cup Size You Want
Some people want a tiny espresso while others prefer a hulking great mug.
As you’ll see from the above product breakdowns, most of the best machines give you a great deal of freedom in cup size. Just choose the size you want, hit the button and you’re good to go.
4) Space-Saving Solution
Most single-serve machines are compact so great for even small kitchens.
If you live alone or in a small apartment, one of these machines is a fantastic way to enjoy shop-grade coffee without leaving home or overcrowding the counter space.
5) Ease of Cleaning and Maintenance
Cleaning conventional, large makers can be a real pain.
Single serves present no such problem. Check closely for reports on cleaning and maintenance for the model you have in mind. User reviews generally paint a pretty honest picture.
Cleaning is normally a very swift and relaxed affair while ongoing maintenance should be at an absolute minimum.
Let’s face it, coffee chains produce great drinks but at quite a price. It’s easy to find your spending spiraling out of control.
Single-serve machines allow you to enjoy top-notch coffee without spending thousand of dollars a year.
The best machine represents a sound long-term investment.
- Drawbacks of Single Serve Coffee Makers With Pods
While single-serve coffee makers, championed by the legendary Keurig and now replicated by other brands across the world, are super-convenient, they also come with a significant downside.
We’ll walk you through 3 reasons, read on.
The leading disadvantage of traditional single serve makers like those made famous by Keurig is the cost. And we’re not talking about the sticker price…
Any product packaged up in micro-doses will always be more expensive. This logic applies to capsules or pods. This cost is passed on to you, the customer. There’s no way around it, pods are expensive and you’ll also have the hassle of sourcing them and ensuring you always have a full supply.
While you could argue that buying these capsules is nowhere near as expensive as a daily coffee shop run, you wouldn’t expect to pay Starbucks prices to drink at home.
2. Bad For The Environment
Since so much plastic is used in the production of those convenient pods, to say the classic single serve model is eco-unfriendly is a colossal understatement.
Companies like Keurig have stated publicly they intend to make a complete shift to use recyclable pods by 2020. Even if they do hit this target, recycling this type of material is riddled with complications. It also requires other manufacturers to follow suit. This may or may not happen.
3. You Can’t Use Your Favorite Coffee
Don’t get us wrong, most major brands have a pretty impressive selection of pods to choose from. It’s not like you’ll be forced to choose between just a couple of flavors. The thing is, will your favorite blend be on the list? If not, you’ll be forced to go without or drink something that for you is second-best.
Or, you could invest in a single-serve maker with no pods and continue drinking exactly what you want.
Also, if you appreciate the advantage of grinding your beans directly before brewing so you can get the ultimate in taste, you wouldn’t be able to do that with a pod-style machine.
We trust you’ve enjoyed these single-serve machine reviews and will make a coffee as good as Starbucks. If you take the time to do plenty of reading and research, getting the best machine for the job is not rocket science.
Feel free to drop us a line if you have any questions or feedback. We’re always delighted to hear from our readers.