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Are Coffee Pods The Same As Instant Coffee?

by Invigo Coffee 14 Jul 2021
Are Coffee Pods The Same As Instant Coffee?

The confusion of coffee pods as the same as instant coffee is a common occurrence for many coffee drinkers. Most people who drink coffee focus on the sweet taste of their beverage. As long as you’re enjoying the unique taste you’ve come to love, it’s normal to worry less about the type of coffee you're drinking. As a result, it's possible not to know the exact kind of coffee product you're drinking. 

If you fall into the category of coffee drinkers who brew their beverages themselves, you’re likely to be particular about what goes into the cup. Depending on your choice, you may choose to brew your coffee using coffee pods or instant coffee. Since both coffee brews will give you a fantastic taste, it’s easy to draw up assumptions. One of these assumptions is concluding that coffee pods are the same as instant coffee. 

Coffee pod and instant coffee are both quick to prepare if you brew on your own. Sometimes, coffee pods and instant coffee may even have a similar taste. Therefore, it’s easy to mistake coffee pods for instant coffee and vice-versa. 

In this blog, we’ll help you make the distinction between both forms of coffee. This article will confirm whether coffee pods and instant coffee are the same. 

Are Coffee Pods and Instant Coffee the Same?

News flash — coffee pods and instant coffee are not the same. But there are a few similarities you should know. 

Both coffee pods and instant coffee have the similar goal of giving you coffee as fast as you want it. However, it doesn't mean coffee pods are the same as instant coffee. While instant coffee and coffee pods offer quick brewing methods, instant coffee is the fastest method. 

What is Instant Coffee?

Instant coffee has been a fixture in the coffee industry before the creation of coffee pods. Instant coffee allows you to brew coffee with less stress. After brewing your coffee, you may not need to add any additives since it already tastes great. 

To manufacture instant coffee, producers use already brewed coffee. Instant coffee manufacturers start by brewing coffee to the concentrate level. Once they have the coffee as a concentrate, the next process is drying it. There are two methods of drying concentrated coffee. 

Manufacturers can either use a quick-drying process or a freeze-drying process. Regardless of the method you choose, the overall goal is to remove all water content from the brewed coffee concentrate. The final result should look like granular coffee. 

Consumers can add instant coffee to whatever amount of water they desire. As you know, the ratio of water and coffee will affect the taste of the resulting coffee brew. If the water content supersedes the coffee content, the coffee brew won't taste nice and vice versa. 

Typically, manufacturers use Robusta coffee beans to make instant coffee. This type of beans isn't the type of beans used to make most of the other types of coffee. Likewise, the production process of instant coffee is less stressful than the process of making other types of coffee, including coffee pods.

Instant coffee pods are easy to make and immediately give you dissolved coffee. It's almost the same process with coffee pods, as it provides you coffee immediately. 

The similarity makes people question if instant coffee is in coffee pods? We can provide the answer to the question by helping you understand the meaning of coffee pods. 

What Are Coffee Pods?

The first thing you need to know about coffee pods is their constituents. Most, if not all, coffee pods have ground coffee as the pod’s main coffee content. 

Next up is the manufacturing process. The process of making ground coffee differs from that of instant coffee. That’s the first indicator that coffee pods and instant coffee are not the same. 

The first step in the manufacturing process is to roast the coffee beans. Then, the manufacturers grind the roasted coffee into ground coffee. After making the ground coffee from roasted beans, coffee pod manufacturers package the ground coffee in single-serve containers.  

The production process is one of the primary differences between coffee pods and instant coffee. Another talking point is taste. The taste of coffee pods will always remain fresher than the taste of instant coffee. Instant coffee undergoes preparation before the drying process. The extra preparation means there’s less of an edge to the taste of your coffee pods. 

Features of Coffee Pods

Canadians dispose of over 2.5 million types of coffee pods in a single day. So, you can say we love our coffee pods. 

Coffee pods come with unique features which play a vital role in the popularity of coffee pods across the globe. These features also mean that coffee pods are different from instant coffee.

Size and dimension

When coffee pods first came into the coffee industry, there were different size ranges of products due to the diversity in the industry. After a while, there became a generally accepted size for coffee pods. 

The average coffee pod usually has a diameter somewhere around 30 millimetres, and the weight is usually between eight and 12 grams.  

However, the coffee pod industry is ever-evolving, and as such, different coffee pods exist. The sizes and dimensions of coffee pods aren't the same everywhere. A coffee pod size heavily depends on the brand manufacturing the coffee pod. So don't get surprised if you see coffee pods of highly different sizes.


Like we mentioned, the coffee pod industry continues to evolve every day. In this evolving industry, the way each coffee pod looks will differ from the other. Moreso, the taste of the coffee pod from one brand can't be the same as another brand's taste. In most cases, the production process between two coffee pod manufacturers can't be the same. 

Starting from the constituents of the coffee pods, different brands try to spice up the components of their coffee pod products. For instance, brand A may create coffee pods for a target audience that loves black coffee. On the other hand, brand B may have a product with ingredients targeting an audience that loves their coffee served with enough cream. 

In the scenario above, brand A will add a lot of coffee content in their coffee pods to give the desired results. Brand B, on the other hand, will focus on adding cream or milk to their products. So the main thing you need to know about coffee pods is they sometimes have different constituents. 

At the initial stage, the coffee pod was simply the coffee equivalent of a teabag. At that time, coffee pods were ground coffee in a paper filter. Today, the materials used to house the ground coffee content of coffee pods are not always the same. Some coffee pod companies work with plastic pods, while others prefer aluminum.

Simple design

The primary selling point for coffee pods is the simple design that all coffee pods have. In most cases, a coffee pod's design will always remain small, portable and beautiful. So regardless of the manufacturer, you'll always see a coffee pod in a simple design. 

The simple designs of coffee pods give you convenience. When you want to brew coffee using coffee pods, you can choose any product, thanks to the simple design. Coffee pods are fully portable and are great in travel situations. 

Long-Lasting Taste

Regardless of brand, coffee pods always come as a sealed product. The sealed property of coffee pods means they’ll stay fresh regardless of how long they spend in storage. As long as your coffee pods are not past the expiry date, they’ll always offer you a fresh taste. 

Furthermore, you have the liberty to use coffee pods manually, with a machine, and without a machine. So, irrespective of the situation you find yourself in, you can easily brew your coffee. The versatile nature of coffee pods is one indicator that it's not the same as instant coffee. 

Mode of brew

One specific property that indicates that coffee pods and instant coffee are not the same is the brew method. For instant coffee, all you have to do is introduce hot water. However, with coffee pods, the case is different. 

You have two methods you can employ when brewing your coffee pods. You can choose to brew your coffee pods with a machine. If you don't have a machine, you can brew the coffee pod manually. 

Features of Instant Coffee

Instant coffee has been in use by many coffee lovers before Eric Favre created coffee pods. To date, instant coffee remains the fastest way to make coffee. You can also conclude that instant coffee is the cheapest way to brew coffee. You don't have to buy special coffee-making equipment before making a great cup of Joe from instant coffee. 

Apart from helping you save costs on other coffee brewing equipment, instant coffee has some fantastic features. Some of the features include;

Powdery Texture

One key reason people assume instant coffee and coffee pods are the same is the powdery texture. If you've seen a coffee pod, you'll notice that there's some powdery content within its container. Since coffee pods give you coffee instantly, many assume that the powdery content is instant coffee. However, as we have explained above, a coffee pod isn't instant coffee. 

After going through the drying process, instant coffee usually comes out in a granular or powdery form. In most cases, the powder form and dry coffee are what most manufacturers pack into the respective packs. 

Taste diversity and inconsistency

instant coffee is simply already brewed coffee that undergoes a comprehensive drying process. The taste of instant coffee depends totally on the type of brew from the foundation. 

If the foundational brew of an instant coffee has huge coffee content, the instant coffee will have a sharp coffee taste. If the foundational brew has a lot of milk, the instant coffee will have creamy properties. The properties of the coffee brew that gets dried up will be the same property when it becomes instant coffee. 

Therefore, instant coffee can come in a variety of tastes and flavours. The average manufacturer of instant coffee can tweak their production method to fit different taste needs. 

Your brewing process can also determine the taste of your instant coffee brew. For instance, let's assume you brew instant coffee with two teaspoons of coffee normally. If you decide to change the size of the spoon, you'll get an entirely different taste. 


As you would expect, there are many brands in the production of instant coffee. The production of instant coffee doesn't exactly take a tedious process. To manufacture instant coffee isn't easy, but it’s effortless compared to the ground coffee production process. As a result, there are hundreds of brands that focus on the production of instant coffee. 

Easy brew

If you think the process of making instant coffee is straightforward, you've not met the brewing process. The brewing process of instant coffee is straightforward. All you need to add to the mix is hot water. The coffee has some constituents already, so when you introduce hot water, you have the hot coffee ready immediately. 

No much material

Unlike coffee pods, instant coffee doesn't come with too many materials for its packaging. Most of the time, the manufacturers weigh an amount of instant coffee. Once they have their desired weight, the manufacturer places the instant coffee into an already designed package. So asides from the container housing the instant coffee, there's no other material for its production. 

Differences between Coffee Pods and Instant Coffee

All through this article, the goal is to help you understand that coffee pods are not the same as instant coffee. While there are similarities that may force you to make a sharp assumption, a coffee pod is a distinct property from instant coffee. Some of the key differences between coffee pods and instant coffee are; 

Different production process

If you're a manufacturer of either instant coffee or coffee pod, your first worry is getting the correct coffee beans. The coffee beans used for instant coffee aren’t the same as the ones used for coffee pods. 

What manufacturers do with the coffee beans during the manufacturing process is another essential difference between instant coffee and coffee pods. After processing coffee beans into their powdery form, you have your instant coffee ready. But in the case of coffee pods, when you have the powdery form ready, you still need to package it as a single-serve. 

Different packs

If you still have some confusion about whether coffee pods are a form of instant coffee, check out the packaging. With coffee pods, there’s no difference in size and packaging. Each coffee pod offers enough coffee for a single-serve.

The reverse is the case for instant coffee. Typically, instant coffee packs come in different sizes. The pack may be big enough to provide you with a single brew. Conversely, instant coffee may come in bigger packs — offering enough coffee for multiple brews. 

Brewing style

Both coffee pods and instant coffee have designs to give you coffee speedily. However, it doesn't mean coffee pods are the same as instant coffee. The brewing process is different. 

With instant coffee, all you have to do is add hot water, and you’ll have your coffee. For coffee pods, you can introduce the hot water manually or with a machine.

Related Article: K-Cups Vs Coffee Pods - What's the Difference?

Similarities between Coffee Pods and Instant Coffee

If you think coffee pods are the same as instant coffee, it isn't exactly your fault. The truth is there are some similar properties between coffee pods and instant coffee. 

Below we explore the features that make coffee

Same coffee

First off, the end product of both instant coffee and coffee pods is to brew a cup of coffee. Irrespective of the different manufacturing and brewing processes, the end product is always coffee. 

Diverse brands

The popularity of coffee pods has given rise to different brands competing with each other in the market. There are hundreds of coffee brands looking to put a unique spin on the taste of coffee pods. So much so that you can buy different varieties of coffee pods from the same brand. 

Similarly, instant coffee also has many brands that manufacture the product commercially. As with the coffee pods, you have a variety of tastes to choose from with instant coffee. Sometimes, you can have a brand that produces both instant coffee and coffee pods. 

Brewing ease

The process of brewing instant coffee and coffee pods is highly straightforward and less stressful. Bothe brewing methods need hot water to work. The slight difference in the brewing process is instant coffee is in its raw form while coffee pod has a container. 

Taste difference

The different brands of instant coffee and coffee pods give room for different tastes. So you have taste options to choose from when you're picking instant coffee or coffee pods. Moreso, you can change the taste intensity of your instant coffee or coffee pod as you wish. All you need is to increase the amount of instant coffee or coffee pod in your brew. 

How to Brew Coffee Pods

Like we have mentioned earlier, brewing coffee pods is a quick and easy process. Against what you may think, you don't need to use a coffee pod machine to brew coffee pods every time. Let's take a look at the different ways to brew coffee pods.

With a compatible machine

Brewing your coffee pod with a compatible machine is the easiest way. All you need is a coffee pod and a suitable machine. Once you set up the machine to the proper water level and other brew settings, you're good to go. You'll place your coffee pod in the space provided and brew with a single button tap. 

With an incompatible machine

You may have a coffee pod that doesn't work with your coffee pod machine based on size and other factors. That shouldn't be the end; you can still brew your cup of coffee with the machine. You'll need to buy a compatible coffee pod holster that works with both the machine and coffee pod. 


You can also brew your coffee pod manually if you don't have a coffee pod machine. This process works perfectly with the paper-filter type of coffee pod. The process is simple: put your coffee pod in a mug and introduce hot water. After that, wait a while, then remove your pod and add other additives to the brew. 

How to Make Instant Coffee

As the name implies, the process of making instant coffee is straightforward and quick.

  • Measure your spoons of instant coffee into a mug
  • Then stir the coffee until it dissolves. 
  • Add your additives and enjoy your brew. 

Related Needs: Should I Add Milk To Coffee Pods?

Final Thoughts 

The debate of coffee pods being the same as instant coffee is a viral one. However, as we have explained above, coffee pods and instant coffee aren't the same. 

The different features of coffee pods and instant coffee above show that although they belong to the same family (coffee), they are not the same. 

While instant coffee sounds nice if you’re looking to save time, we'll prefer coffee pods any day, like many coffee lovers. Coffee pods have a fresh taste that lasts long, unlike instant coffee.

Here at Invigo Coffee, we can provide you with the best coffee pods at the best prices. We also offer different coffee pod flavours to cater to your distinct taste needs. Look through our collections today!

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