K-Cups vs Coffee Pods – Which One Is the Better?


Coffee is known to be an energy hack to pretty much all productive individuals. Single-serving coffees are getting popular day by day due to its simplicity and convenient way of coffee making. 

Some people prefer K-cups, while some decide to stick to coffee pods, which brings K-cups vs pods argument.

Have you ever wondered if there is any difference in these two options, or thinking about switching your preference?

For people who are about to buy a coffee brew machine, it’s a must to know what differences does it make, or whether they can use both options in their machine or not. 

This article will tell you about the differences between these two options and help you to decide which machine to go for.

Coffee Pods vs K Cups – the Initial Differences

The very first difference that you can easily notice is the packaging.

A single serving coffee pod is basically a pre-packed coffee grounds. It comes in a package of filter paper, or a resealable bag similar to pads. Pods get round and flat packaging, and sometimes come wrapped in foil that helps to preserve.

Whereas, the k cups come packed in a small plastic cup. Inside the cup, a filter contains the coffee grounds. In a Keurig machine, two needles puncture the lid of a k-cup. After that, through those holes, hot water goes into the filter and makes coffee to flow out.

Coffee pods were the first single-serve coffee that was introduced in the market.

But, due to poor quality standards, lack of coffee machines, and lack of coffee choices, it didn’t bring pods any good reputation in the market.

But, on the flip side, people seemed to overwhelmingly accept k-cups and started to use them for both personal and commercial use.

Coffee Pods


Let’s talk about pods first. As I have mentioned earlier, these are pre-packed coffee grounds that come with a relatively simpler packaging compared to k-cups. 

All your coffee grounds are in it’s filter paper, which feels very soft to touch. This is a more biodegradable and environment-friendly option than its competitor.

Coffee Making Procedure Using Pods


Unfortunately, standard Keurig machines aren’t compatible with pods.

You will require pod-brewing machines that are specially made for this kind of single-serving coffee grounds. When you put the pod inside the coffee marker, it flows hot water through the coffee filter that extracts the desired flavor from the grounds.

Some pod-brewing coffee making machines use gravity, while some use air pressure to extract flavor from the grounds.

Regardless of the machine mechanism, you will be able to make aromatic, consistent, and full-flavored coffee from pods every time. 

Should You Get It?

Even though coffee pods managed to penetrate the coffee market, still there are limited numbers of blends and roasts that may discourage the customer from buying it.

However, if you only care about the type of coffee you regularly like and can stick to your preference, coffee pods are for you. Get a pod-brewing coffee marker, and enjoy instantly made coffee without doing much.

But, if you are the type of person who prefers doing experiments with coffee, this one isn’t for you.

How Does It Taste?


As it’s only a soft filter that covers the coffee grounds, the water gets the chance to contact more grounds than in k-cups.

This makes the extraction process much better and stronger, and you can enjoy the bolder flavor of the coffee.

Reasons That You Should Get It

  • More environmentally-friendly option
  • Much cheaper
  • Stronger and extracts more coffee flavor

Reasons That You Should Avoid It

  • Fewer blends and roasts
  • Machines aren’t available compared to k-cups



This is the most popular form of a single-serving coffee capsule among coffee enthusiasts. The plastic cartridge got a foil lid that protects the grounds.

You may find a few k-cup flavors with a filter inside the cup

Even though it’s a hassle-free way of getting a cup of coffee compared to pods, it’s also the reason for tons of waste, which isn’t environmentally-friendly.

Coffee Making Procedure Using K-Cups


There are lots of Keurig coffee making machines available for k-cups.

In addition to that, there are third party coffee makers that you can buy at a much cheaper price tag. It’s super convenient to make a cup of coffee out of a k-cup. 

All you need to do is to pop the k-cup into the machine and press the start button. The coffee maker machine will puncture a hole on the lid and plastic container, and then flow hot water through the cup, similar to the pod.

Should You Get It?

When it’s about k-cups, there are tons of options available for you.

Even though Keurig has their trademarked k-cups, other reputable names such as Tim Horton’s or Starbucks have their own version of K-cup with their signature blends. There are huge numbers of k-cups versions that work with most Keurig coffee makers.

So, when the situation demands you to get a k-cup, you will easily find lots of its versions in grocery stores, and even online.

How Does It Taste?


Average k-cup versions might not be able to deliver you flavorful and rich coffee taste.

However, if you get good quality roasts and blends, you will surely get the best out of it.

Reasons That You Should Get It

  • Lots of options from various brands
  • Easy and convenient to make coffee
  • Good taste

Reasons That You Should Avoid It

  • A bit expensive than its competitor
  • Not as strong flavor as coffee pods
  • Produce a lot of waste


  1. Do coffee pods work in k-cup?

    Unfortunately, No. Coffee pods can only be used on pod brewers.
    The brewing chambers of both k-cup and pod are different from each other. 

  2. Are nespresso pods the same as K-cups?

    These are not the same. You cannot use Nespresso pods in a K cup Keurig brewer. Neither can k cups can fit into Nespresso’s slim pod due to different sizes. They also differ in price.

  3. What is a K-cup pod?

    Some k-cups include a filter inside the plastic container, these are known as k-cup pods.

  4. Are all K-cups the same size?

    Each k-cup comes in a standard size, so, yes, they are all the same, as they have the same amount of coffee grinds inside the container. 

  5. Do all keurigs use the same pods?

    There are pods of different sizes. Lighter ones contain 7 to 12 grams of coffee, whereas heavier ones contain 9 to 12 grams. Depending on the brewing mechanism, the size varies.

Final Words

When it’s about k cups vs coffee pods, both of them have some similarities as well as differences.

Pods are cheaper, good for the environment, but there are limited blends and roasts. Whereas, cups are a bit expensive, but are widely available in various flavors, blends, and roasts.

Try both of them, and check which one suits your taste the most.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *