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How To Choose The Best Single Cup Coffee Maker: The Ultimate Guide

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Single cup coffee makers are becoming more popular every day. They allow users to make a single cup of their favorite hot beverage whenever they want one, without requiring them to waste an entire pot. Before you rush right out and buy the first single cup coffee maker you see, there are some things to consider to ensure that you buy the best single cup coffee maker for your needs.

What Is A Single Cup Coffee Maker?

A single cup coffee maker is designed for use with a small pod or rectangular insert that contains the coffee or hot beverage that you want to drink. The little pod is dropped into the reservoir, water is put into a designated area on the machine, and the user simply has to push a button to enjoy fresh, coffee house style coffee one cup at a time. There are many different types of the best single cup coffee makers; some that are for use only with coffee, and some that allow you the freedom to brew other hot beverages as well.

Things To Consider

As with any kitchen appliance, you need to make sure that you understand exactly what you need out of your new single cup coffee maker before you make the decision on which one to purchase. These coffee makers come in a wide variety of styles and prices, so you want to make sure you know exactly what you want before you buy.

What Beverages Do You Plan To Make?

While many of the best single cup coffee makers brew only certain flavors of coffee, there are also many others that can brew hot or iced tea, iced coffee, hot chocolate, cappuccino, mocha, latte, and espresso. If you want to enjoy a wider range of beverages from your single cup coffee maker, you should be sure to check what types of beverages the one you are interested in actually brews.

You should also decide if there is a single brand of coffee you prefer, or if you want the ability to branch out and try other brands and flavors. Some of the single cup coffee makers only allow certain pods, while others can accommodate a wide variety of pod brands and sizes.

How Often You Plan To Brew?

Every brand and style of single serve coffee makers are designed for everyday use, but some of them have features that allow for rapidly brewing several cups in succession. Others, however, do have a bit of a wait time in between cups before they are ready to brew again. If you are the only coffee drinker in your home, this delay should be no problem. If there are several people who will be brewing cups of coffee, you may want to consider a single serve coffee maker that is designed for back to back brewing.

How Many People Will Be Using The Machine?


There is a wide range of sizes for the best single cup coffee makers. Some are designed to be refilled each time a cup is brewed, while others have a much larger water reservoir that can brew several cups before it needs to be refilled. If there are several users, a medium to large size brewer may be best.

Now that you know what you need out of your single cup coffee brewer, you should take the time to compare the specifications and features of the best single cup coffee makers. You should also be aware that some pods or K-cups can cost significantly more than others. If you do not drink tons of coffee, this may not be a huge concern. However, if you drink coffee all day, the costs can quickly add up. Some machines allow for the use of refillable pods that you fill with your own ground coffee. This can be considerably cheaper for you serious coffee drinkers out there, and it allows you a broader range of flavor choices as well.

Cup Size

The best single cup coffee makers will allow you to choose the perfect size cup. While some only allow you to use the traditional 4 to 5 oz. coffee cup, others are designed to handle the larger travel mugs as well. If you use a traditional mug at home, but want the option to take your joe with you, you should choose a machine that allows for varying sizes.

Brew Strength

Some people prefer an average brewing strength for their coffees, but others prefer a much more robust flavor. The best single cup coffee makers will allow you to choose the perfect brewing strength for each cup, which works out perfectly when there are several coffee drinkers in the home.


The wattage of a single serve coffee maker is directly responsible for how quickly each cup will brew, as well as how hot each cup will be. The best single cup brewers will have a wattage in the range of 1200 – 1500 watts. This will result in a faster brew time for each cup, as well as a temperature of the beverage you are brewing.


Some of the best single cup coffee makers will have programmable features that will ensure that the water in the tank is heated and ready to brew as soon as you wake up in the morning. The programmable varieties usually allow you to choose the desired temperature of your beverage as well, which is great for those mornings when you just need a cup of coffee to even open your eyes. If you do not mind waiting a few minutes for your brewer to heat the water, then you may not need a programmable version.


User Friendly

The single cup brewers are designed for ease of use, but some do have features that make them easier to use than others. The best brewers will allow you to simply drop in the pod of your choice, and push a button. You should look for a brewer that has a removable water reservoir to make filling and cleaning as easy as possible. You will also want to verify whether there are any water filtration systems that will need maintenance or filters, as well as whether you will need to use special cleaning supplies for de-scaling the unit.

Unit Size

Some brands of the best single cup coffee makers can be quite large, so you will want to take the time to assess how much counter room you have for the brewer. You will also need to determine whether you plan to purchase a unit that accommodates larger travel mugs, or whether an average size cup will do. There is nothing worse than purchasing the best coffee maker possible, only to find out that you have no room on your countertop to store it for easy accessibility.

Cost Per Cup

The best single cup coffee makers are a bit more expensive per cup when compared to regular coffee makers. Some of the pods can cost as much as $0.50 per serving, which can quickly add up over time. However, you also get a much better tasting coffee or tea as well since the pods are generally gourmet blend varieties. If you plan to use your single cup brewer to replace an expensive coffee house addiction, you will be able to save quite a bit of money very quickly. If you entertain coffee drinkers often, it might be a good idea to keep a regular coffee maker on hand for those times.
Some of the best coffee brewers do offer an assembly that allows you to fill the enclosed filter and basket with your own blend of coffee. This feature can be much more cost effective, and can lower the price per pod to as low as $0.10 per cup.


You should know exactly how much you plan to spend on a single cup coffee maker before you begin shopping. Some varieties can be quite expensive, while others are much more budget friendly. Just make sure that you account for the features you want, as well as those that you do not necessarily need.

Why Do We Need To Get The Best Single Cup Coffee Maker?

When you are making the decision for which single cup coffee maker is suitable for you, you should also remember that the best coffee brewers will offer you a much better cup of coffee. If you truly want the best cup of coffee, you need to make sure that you purchase the best single cup coffee maker. The quality and features of the best brewers are designed to provide you with the best user experience, as well as the best possible cup of gourmet coffee. While you can choose to purchase a more mediocre single cup brewer, you must also realize that you will also be brewing a more mediocre cup of your favorite hot beverage.

Choosing the best single cup coffee maker is a personal decision that requires you to look at exactly what you want in a machine, as well as the features you get as well.

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