Are you aware of how much coffee you consciously or unconsciously waste? How many times do you throw out half of a carafe of coffee because you wanted a fresher pot? Especially when you know you will only drink a cup or two? The average cost of a cup of coffee ranges between $3.30 and about $4 in the United States. I can’t count how many times I have thrown away a coffee cup that was a half or a third of the way full.
Any way you slice it, it’s a shameful waste of money over the long term. If you ever wondered why the single cup coffee maker market is so strong, this is one of the reasons why. Over 26% of Americans bought a single cup coffee maker in 2018. K-cups and coffee capsule purchases aren’t cheap, for sure, but people are more likely to finish one cup as opposed to actively wasting a carafe of coffee. There is just more bang for your buck with a single cup coffee maker.
The best single cup coffee maker for your needs provides a one-cup jolt without wasting coffee or money. Here are two of the best single cup coffee makers on the market.
Keurig K55 Single Serve Coffee Maker
The Keurig K55 is extremely user-friendly. All you have to do is insert a pod, press a button, and you will have an expertly brewed cup of coffee in about a minute. You can brew a 6 oz., 8 oz., or 10 oz. cup of coffee based on corresponding K-cup sizes. It comes with a removable, 48 oz. water tank which is easy to clean. You can make about 6 cups of coffee before refilling the water tank again.
Due to its operational flexibility and removable filter, you can also opt to use your own coffee grounds. Or, even make tea. The K55 can take up to 10 minutes to prepare itself for brewing when you tun it on. Unlike later versions of this single cup coffee maker, there is no automatic descaling or self-cleaning function. Calcium deposits can build up on the inside of the machine, affecting taste and function. Instructions are provided to show you how to clean the machine with vinegar from time to time.
This model also does not vary brew strength with its basic one-button function. Still, it is a great machine that works well. You can buy it for about $90.
Hamilton Beach 49976 Flex brew 2-Way Brewer
The Hamilton Beach 49976 Flex Brew allows you the option of brewing a full carafe or single cup of coffee with its 2-way, dual-sided brewing system. You also have the versatility of using K-cups or fresh coffee grounds via compatible, small sized Melitta paper filters. This machine brews up to 10 oz. cup with a K-cups or up to 14 oz. with fresh coffee grounds.
The 49976 can be programmed to begin brewing at a preferred time after you have filled either, or both, of its single cup or carafe side water reservoirs. You can adjust brewing strength according to your preference. Keep in mind that you can only brew from one side of the machine at a time. The Hamilton Beach 49976 Flex Brew costs about $80.
Single cup coffee makers are convenient, cost-efficient, and can cut down on waste relative to how much leftover coffee people usually throw away. I bought one because I usually drink a cup at a time and wanted to stop wasting half-full carafes. Consider buying one.