Thursday, July 18, 2013

Guides to Find the Best Single-Cup Coffee Maker

Single-cup coffee makers have earned worldwide recognition and popularity for the past years, which can be seen on their continuously increasing sales and demand. Who wouldn't want to enjoy a cup of hot coffee, fast-served and well-brewed everyday before going to work or school? For coffee lovers who always on the go or living independently, nothing is better than a single-serve coffee maker.  It allows us to easily make one cup of coffee at a time without the mess of brewing a whole pot.

So if you're considering buying one, the reviews, comparisons and guides below will help you decide what is the best single-cup coffee maker for you.

Features to look for when buying a single-cup coffee maker:

Here are some of the important features to check for when looking for a single-cup coffee maker, as well as the things you need to consider to find the features suitable for your personal needs and preferences.

Capacity —this refers to the amount of coffee the machine can make in a brewing cycle. Your choice must depend on how much coffee you can drink.

Coffee Pods Compatible — single-serve brewer are generally compatible with coffee pods or k-cups. But you need to check first the availability of coffee pods in your location, and verify if the machine can go with any brand of coffee pods.

Coffee pods are pre-package ground coffee, already measured and pre-tamped, and with an own filter. So no need to measure the coffee and use disposable filters. Thus a brewer that is compatible with these pods makes serving coffee more convenient and easier.

Digital Controls - this includes controls or functions that make the machine more convenient and easier to use, such as:
  • Auto-off
  • Auto-on/Programmable —having your coffee ready on a specific time of the day.
  • Digital Backlit Clock
  • Brew & Temperature selectors —select your desired brew amount, strength, and temperature.
  • Pause & Serve —sneak a cup before the end of the brewing process.
Water Reservoir —this is where the water is stored and bring to heat. The size of the water reservoir usually depends on the capacity of the machine. So again base your decision on the amount of coffee you can drink. It is also important that the reservoir is made of stainless steel or tough glass/plastic to lessen its probability of exploding due to high temperature.

Ease of Cleaning —almost all single-cup coffee markers are easy to clean, but it's more convenient if the filter basket, where the messy brewing and spilling always happen, is removable, so that you can clean it easily on the sink or dishwasher.

Ease of Use —to use a single-cup coffee maker, fill the water reservoir with water, put the coffee pods on the filter basket, and then click the start button and wait for few minutes for your coffee to brew. Hustle free right? But it is more convenient if the machine has digital controls to minimize your works.

Dimension/Size —usually the bigger the size of the coffee maker the larger its water reservoir, the amount of coffee it can produce, and the space it will occupy into your house. So you must base this on your storage space, and again on how much coffee you plan to drink everyday.

Top Rated Single-Cup Coffee Makers

So we already know what features to look for when buying a single-serve brewer, it's  now time to begin the search!  Let's start with the top rated single-cup coffee makers on Amazon.

Café Valet Black/Silver Single Serve Coffee Brewer

This coffee maker provides an affordable and easy way to make single serve coffee that is consistently hot and tasty.

Average User Rating: 4.9/5
Price: $$

Capacity: 10 oz.
Coffee Pods Compatibility: Yes, works exclusively with Café Valet disposable brew basket and coffee filter
Digital Controls: Automatic shut-off
Water Reservoir: Included
Brand: Cafe Valet
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 4.6 x 8.8 inches ; 1.5 pounds
Warranty: 1 year limited
Also in the box: 18 Count Variety Pack of Exclusive Café Valet dark roasted 100% Arabica coffee filters and disposable trays

Customer Review:
The cafe valet coffee is one reason I love staying in hotels! It's perfect coffee every time. I hate overly bitter coffee and coffee that tastes burned...and I don't understand paying a premium for either! After my last hotel stay I came home and ordered my own. I have it set up on my dresser and love waking up and making my coffee first thing. A great way to start the day. The unit takes up very little space and is easy to use. The coffee packs are not overly expensive. I have nothing but love for this product! —Rachell

Click here to see the pricing, complete features, and more actual users reviews!

Keurig K65 Special Edition Gourmet Single-Cup Home Brewer

This coffee maker provides a convenient and easy way of brewing different amount of single-cup coffee.

Average User Rating: 4.6/5
Price: $$$

Capacity: 3 brew size options (6 oz., 8 oz., or 10 oz.)
Coffee Pods Compatibility:  Yes, for use with patented K-Cups
Digital Controls: Backlit Digital LCD display,  Digital Clock, Auto On/Off, Adjustable Temperature, Brew Size Options
Water Reservoir: 60 oz. reservoir—good for a maximum of three brewing cycle of  the 10 oz. single-cup option
Brand: Keurig
Product Dimensions: 14.9 x 14.2 x 12.2 inches ; 2 pounds
Warranty: 30 day money back guarantee
Also in the box: Bonus 12-count K-Cup variety pack and Water Filter Kit

Customer Review:
We have been researching keurig coffee makers for a while and decided to get the K65. We were excited to get this and when it arrived my wife was the first to open and set it up. It came with a sample pack of coffees and tea. Wish the sample pack included more than 1 kcup tea but that is just a minor gripe. The filter was a nice bonus but if you use filtered water already it is useless. We brewed a cup of tea and it was nice. We love the fact that every brew is consistent. We have used it every morning since we got it and everything has gone well. We bought the coffee filter set so we can use your own coffee grinds. Everything works flawlessly. It is a bit noisy during the warm up but other than that it is a great coffee maker. —Robert

Click here to see the pricing, more actual customers reviews, and complete features!

BUNN MCU Single Cup Multi-Use Brewer

This coffee maker brings the convenience and versatility of brewing ground coffee, k-cups, soft coffee pods, favorable coffee and tea pods, tea bags and loose tea.

Average User Rating: 4.4/5
Price: $$$

Capacity: 4 to 14 oz.
Coffee Pods Compatibility: Yes, can use with k-cups and other brands.
Digital Controls: None
Water Reservoir: Included
Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 13.5 x 16.5 inches ; 11.3 pounds
Warranty: 2 years

Customer Review:
This is my second unit. My daughter moved out so I let her take the one year old with her. This one is exactly like the first one except it has all the different options to use whatever pod/k-cup/grounds/etc that you could need - whereas the first one only came with the pod holder.
It's quick, easy to clean and doesn't keep heating the water when not being used like my larger 12 cup Bunn coffee maker. Removing the lower catch tray lets you use larger travel mugs. —RG

Click here to check the pricing, complete features, and more actual customers reviews!

Does any of the above mentioned single-serve coffee makers caught your interest? If none, click here to see the full list of Top Rated Single-Cup Coffee Makers on Amazon. You may also want to check the Best Selling Single-Cup Coffee Makers on Amazon.

Final thoughts:

Although I have discussed a detailed reviews, guides, and comparisons of the best of the best single-cup coffee makers above, at the end of it, you still have the final say of which single-cup coffee maker will be the most useful to you.  Just take your time, read actual buyers' reviews —the smartest and most honest reviews that you can rely on, and where you can find the answers to all the questions that you have in mind, and if you think this or that machine suits your needs and preferences, then go buy it.