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Tips That Coffee Pod Users Should Know

by Invigo Coffee 31 Aug 2021
Tips That Coffee Pod Users Should Know
Nothing beats a nice cup of coffee first thing in the morning after a good night's sleep. We daresay the only thing better than a cup of coffee is a fresher brew. 

However, brewing coffee the usual way every morning can be a bit of a hassle; that's why we have coffee pods. As a coffee pod user, you only need a couple of tips to learn how to fix your fresh brew anytime.

Coffee pods provide a convenient way to make coffee anywhere at any time. They're right for you if you enjoy drinking coffee often but can't afford to spend a long time brewing it. 

Coffee pods are easy to use and do not cost a lot of money to buy. Not only that, they taste great and come in many different flavours, so you're almost certain to find a flavour you like.

However, while coffee pods may be quite straightforward to use, it's still easy to get it wrong many times. You can mess up the preparation process and end up with a subpar coffee. 

Not to mention there are many brands and flavours available. Therefore, it may be tricky to find the right pod for you. So we're providing some tips for coffee pods users, but before that, let's have a breakdown of coffee pods.

What Are Coffee Pods?

Coffee pods are single self-serving or reusable containers with enough coffee to serve a cup for an individual. You can liken coffee pods to teabags with a sufficient amount of coffee wrapped in a paper bag. 

Coffee in a pod comes already grounded and usually with a filter. This feature makes for easy and quick brewing on the go.

Coffee pods were meant to make life easier for those who can't measure the right amount of coffee beans. Since they come in bags with filters, you only need to put them in a coffee maker with water. Then you wait to let the coffee sip into the water, and you can have your fresh brew on the go. 

Coffee pods also eliminate the need to measure out flavourings or additives from large containers. Each bag usually comes prepackaged with different flavours and additives. 

You only need to find a brand and flavour you like and go for it. Being a coffee pod user is enjoyable and much less stressful with the right tips and skills.

Even in their straightforwardness, coffee pods can also be tricky to use at times. Don't get the wrong idea; coffee pods are easy to use. However, this doesn't mean that there are no chances of you ruining your coffee.

Even with coffee pods, it's easy to get it wrong. It's the inherent nature of coffee brewing; one bad move and you end up with a mess. 

It takes skill and the right tips for coffee pods users to brew the perfect cup regardless of the ingredients. As such, you should consider the following tips for brewing coffee pods the next time you're making coffee with pods.

Related Article: Are Coffee Pods the Same as Instant Coffee?

Tips For Coffee Pods Users

Moving from the traditional coffee brewing methods and the beans can be quite the transition. Though coffee pods are convenient, there's always a margin for error. 

We understand the possible issues coffee pod users may encounter, and we have the following tips for them.

1st tip for coffee pods users - Coffee pods with or without a machine

You can use your coffee pods in a machine if you desire or make it like regular tea. There are coffee machines with special features for use with coffee pods.  

Such coffee pod machines are not much of a hassle to use. They come with features that complement the straightforward coffee pod brewing process.

How to make coffee with a coffee pods machine

  • Measure the right amount of water into the reservoir on the machine. Distilled water is the best option. Also, ensure the temperature of the water is right. The water shouldn't be too hot to avoid scalding your coffee.
  • Pour some water into the mug in the coffee maker to clean the system. Doing this will help to minimize mineral disposition and make the machine work smoothly. 
  • Carefully remove the pod from the packaging. Take extra care while cutting the pod from the packaging to avoid damaging or exposing the coffee.
  • Lift the pod holder on the machine and insert the pod. This action may require a bit of force as the pod may not fit easily in the holder.
  • Most coffee makers automatically unwrap the coffee pods when you place them inside. So you should not bother with unwrapping the pods manually. However, you may remove the wrap yourself if your coffee machine doesn't have this feature.
  • Set the strength of the coffee as desired on the machine. The coffee strength level settings vary depending on the design of the coffee maker. Regardless, most coffee makers have three options: light, medium and strong.
  • Alternatively, you can use the measure of water to determine the strength of your coffee. It's a simple dilution process; the more water you add, the lighter your coffee will become.
  • Now you can press "brew" on the machine and wait for it to do its work. The machine will make the coffee according to the strength level you configure in the settings. Add an extra coffee pod if the brew is too light, or add more water if it's too strong. 
  • After getting your coffee, dispose of the coffee wraps and press the recycle button to clean the machine. You need to do this to keep the coffee maker ready for use every time. If you have reusable pods, clean the pods and store them properly for the next use.

You can also brew coffee from pods using regular coffee machines. Most traditional coffee machines don't have special features for coffee pods. So you'll need to buy a pod holster to hold the coffee pod in the regular expresso machine.

How to make coffee with a traditional coffee maker

  • Get a coffee pod holster that's suitable for your coffee maker
  • While brewing, place the pods into the holster slowly until it fits into the pocket.
  • Put the pod holster in the place where you normally put coffee grounds in the coffee maker.
  • Gently close the coffee loader after filling it up. Note that it'll not close easily if the pod holster doesn't fit.
  • Set your desired coffee strength level on the machine and calibrate it to the single-serve option.
  • Ensure you have your mug in the right position under the dispenser to avoid spilling the coffee.
  • Press "brew" and let the coffee machine do the rest of the work while you wait for your coffee.

Lastly, you can also brew coffee from pods without a machine. The process is quite similar to how you prepare regular tea in paper bags. However, with this process, it'll be a bit difficult to regulate the strength of your coffee. You'll need a bit of practice to be able to prepare the perfect cup for you. Nonetheless, here's how to use coffee pods without a coffee maker.

How to make coffee from coffee pods without coffee machines

  • Get a mug, remove the coffee pod from its packaging and place it in the cup.
  • Carefully pour a small amount of warm water over the pod in the mug. It's ideal if the water is not too hot to avoid scalding the coffee.
  • You also want to pour the water slowly and in a circular motion over the pod.
  • Stir the water slowly with the pod in it to let the pod mix accurately. Stirring the water is important as it will influence the strength of the coffee.
  • After stirring for a while, let the pod sit in the mixture until it floats to the top.
  • Your coffee is ready! Remove the pod and do whatever you'd like with your brew.

Note that it's a bit tricky to determine the strength of the coffee accurately using this method. You may have to try a couple of times before you'll get the appropriate amount of water right. Regardless, these are useful tips for coffee pods users. Follow these tips, and you won't have any issues brewing a proper cup of coffee.

2nd tip for coffee pod users- Coffee pod variety- Flavored or decaf?

There are so many brands of coffee pods out there, deciding which one to choose can be overwhelming. It's easier if you already have a favourite brand of coffee pods you prefer. 

If you don't have a personal favourite or you like to experiment, you'll need directions when choosing your next brand of coffee pods. Here are some tips for coffee pods users regarding the best varieties of coffee pods available.

Best type of coffee pod to choose

As we said, there are many types of coffee pods out there; it's often difficult to choose one. However, the first thing you want to consider when picking coffee pods is your personal preference. 

What do you like? How do you like your coffee to be? Do you like decaf? Or do you prefer flavoured coffee? Even if you don't mind any of the two, do you have a particular flavour that works for you?

Your answers to these questions will help you identify the type of coffee pod you want. Then, all you need is to go out and find it, which is often quite easy. You can easily find and buy coffee pods online, or you can walk into a shop for them. However, if you're buying online, ensure to buy from vendors with positive reputations. Buy from stores with good reviews.

It's great if you already have a favourite brand or flavour of coffee pods that you take all the time. But where's the fun in that? How about you try new things? 

There are many coffee pods options to choose from besides what you always take every day. Go out and expand your coffee pods' horizons. You'll find a lot of surprises awaiting you when you become receptive to ideas. 

Consider the smoothness of the coffee grind

The smoother the grind of the coffee, the better the coffee you can make with it. The grind of the coffee is very important when selecting coffee pods. 

Pods with more coarse grind often have more sediments during the brewing process. The coarseness often leads to weaker flavour and a rougher taste. Pods with a smoother grind mix in properly with the water, and they retain their flavour better.

Nonetheless, finer grounds of coffee also have their cons. Over brewing easily ruins smooth coffee grounds, and they also tend to clump together when wet. You may want to put these factors into consideration before picking your pods.

If you don't mind some sediments floating around in your brew, go for a coarse grind. If you want something with a stronger flavour and smoother taste, medium to fine grounds are best for you.  However, always keep in mind that fine coffee pod grounds are trickier to brew. You'll need to pay proper attention to avoid over brewing and ruining them.

Try espresso pods for stronger coffee

Espresso pods are a little bit different from regular coffee pods. Espresso pods contain less water content and more caffeine than regular pods. Not just that, due to their lower water content, they're often sweeter and have a stronger flavour. The stronger flavour is why many coffee drinkers prefer espresso pods to regular coffee beans.

Espresso pods sound like an exciting idea, and yes, they are, only if you can handle your coffee. Many people find espresso to be too strong for them and usually have trouble with a cup. 

You want to consider this before ordering a shipment of espresso pods. For coffee pods users, a crucial tip: if you can't handle your caffeine, stay clear of espresso pods. 

But if you can handle your caffeine, feel free to enjoy your coffee how you like it. Espresso hot brews are the best, in our opinion. However, cold brews are not bad either. 

You can experiment around a bit to see the best way to use the coffee pods. But if it's not working for you, please do not commit any further to avoid harming yourself.

Flavour over strength? Try light roasts

Many people don't care for a cup of strong coffee. If anything, they like their coffee light and seething with flavour and delicious aroma. If you're in that category, you want to go for a light roast coffee. Coffee pods come in three different variations — light, medium and dark roasts.

Light roasts often have great aromas and flavour; however, they lack caffeine intensity, so they're not usually strong. Dark roasts are stronger, but they also have delicious flavours too. They're usually loaded with caffeine which accounts for their intensity. 

However, the strength of the caffeine often tends to overshadow the flavour. That's why most people think dark roasts are not as flavorful as light roasts.

But, if you enjoy your coffee with sugar or cream, dark roasts are not for you. The reason being their caffeine content which doesn't usually go well with sugar and cream. 

It all falls to picking the right pod for you. You can still enjoy a light or medium roast with cream and sugar. But these tips for coffee pod users should provide the assistance you need to choose the right pods.

Choose the healthier options

Coffee pods with lower-calorie contents are the healthiest varieties available. You should also go for coffee pods with fewer artificial ingredients. In other words, select pods from organic beans, preferably with less sugar content. The lesser the sugar content of the pods, the better for your health.

Also, while preparing the coffee, heat the water to boiling point and cool for a bit before pouring it on the pods. Some machines can perform this action efficiently; you may want to go for those. Also, do not use too many coffee pods per cup. Always consider the volume of coffee each pod can make and use each pod efficiently.

3rd tip for coffee pods users- Take good care of your coffee machine

Your coffee will only come out as good as your coffee machine makes it. Your machine must always be in the best of conditions every time. Keeping the machine in good condition ensures you get good coffee every time. Not only that, but it'll also preserve the lifespan of the coffee maker.

Make sure to clean and descale the coffee machine as regularly as possible. Descaling involves removing calcium and lime deposits from the machine's surface. Descaling allows the pump to build the pressure needed to create the lovely crema on top of your coffee. 

Ideally, you should clean your coffee machine once or twice a week and descale it every two months. Does your coffee maker experience water pressure/ pump malfunction, frequently full drip tray and mould build-up? 

These are signs your coffee machine is well due for clean up and descaling. However, it's always better not to let it get that bad before doing what's right.

Also, don’t use vinegar to clean your coffee maker. Vinegar cannot clean up coffee oils the way cleaning formulas do. Vinegar does not have the chemical composition to clean the coffee machines effectively. Use the appropriate cleaners as much as possible.

4th tip for coffee pod users- Buy reusable coffee pods

Reusable coffee pods have a lot of advantages in comparison to single-use disposable pods. They're perfect for waste management as you can reuse them many times. And as advocates of sustainability, we believe reusable pods are the best for the following reasons.

They're more cost-effective

Repurposing items often automatically makes them budget-friendly. Most times, reusing an item costs lesser than buying a new one. 

Your initial investment in reusable coffee pods often guarantees valuable returns for longer. You're likely to spend more on single-use pods in the long run than on reusable pods.

Refillable coffee pods are undoubtedly economical, considering how much they can save you in the long run. Every time you refill your pods at home, you spend much less per kilo for every pod. The cost saved per pod may initially seem insignificant, but you’ll realize its significance when you take the cumulative of all the costs saved.

You do your part in preserving the environment

The gospel of environment preservation is one that every human should believe in, accept and follow. As such, it's important for us to do our parts in preserving the environment. One of the ways you can do that is by switching to reusable coffee pods.

As we mentioned before, reusable pods reduce your disposables and are effective for waste management. Let's say you take a cup of coffee every day, and switch to reusable pods from single-use disposable pods. That singular action reduces the number of disposable cups going to landfills per year by 365. 

Consequently, you prevent the emission of about 15kg of greenhouse gas from the combustion of the disposable pods. You're able to make such significant environmental reservation impacts just by switching to reusable pods.

Allows you more freedom to brew your favourite flavours.

Disposable coffee pods often come with prefilled flavour enhancers and other additives. That's not a bad thing in itself; however, it limits what you can have in your coffee. Reusable coffee pods offer you more freedom to source and use the finest coffee blend of your choice. 

You get to fill your reusable pods with whatever blend, mixture or grind of coffee you like. The complexity of your latte is only limited by your choices and skill. 

Make the perfect selection of the best grind, roast, size and intensity of the coffee. Reusable pods are best for experimenting and making new discoveries.

However, when switching to reusable pods, it is imperative to consider the compatibility of the pods to your coffee machine. Stainless steel pods often last longer and are quite efficient. Plastic cups emit methane and are not biodegradable so, they're not environmentally friendly. But you can repurpose them for other creative uses.

Coffee Pods FAQs

Here’s what you need to know?

How long can I store my coffee pods?

The average shelf life of most coffee pods is 24 months without any tampering and in proper storage conditions. However, after opening, the shelf life decreases significantly. 

We strongly recommend you consume the coffee within six weeks of breaking the package. For optimum freshness, do not let your coffee pods sit too long before consuming them.

Is it normal that my coffee spurts out of the pods?

Yes, coffee spurting out of pods occurs occasionally, and they're perfectly normal. Coffee spurts usually happen when the machine pops the pod during extraction. During packaging, the pods are air-sealed right after they're filled with coffee. 

Over time, the coffee releases small amounts of gas while being sealed within the pod. This gas bursts out during extraction and causes a spurt.

What's the best way to dispose of pods?

Most single-use pods are biodegradable, i.e., they have additives that make them break down faster. So you can dispose of them as you would dispose of other wastes. 

However, we always recommend reusable pods. With reusable pods, you don't have to worry about disposing of your pods after use. You can also recycle them for creative purposes.

What do I do with coffee grinds and filter papers after use?

It's always better to recycle the paper, but you can also compost it if you want to. You can recycle the coffee grinds as manure for your garden if you have one.  Or better still, you can throw out the pod top with the paper filter attached. Doing this will allow the coffee grind to decompose properly instead of trapping it in plastic.

What type of coffee grind can I use with reusable pods?

We suggest investing in fresh friends of good quality coffee. The pod itself is only a container, the taste and quality of your latte depend on the coffee grind’s quality. Consider the size of the grind, as well as the richness of the roast of the coffee you wish to put in your pods.

Related Article: Comprehensive Guide to Coffee Pods 2021

Final Thoughts

These are some of the useful tips for coffee pods users. It's important to consider the factors mentioned above when using coffee pods. 

Will you be using a coffee maker? What type of coffee do you like? How do you take of your coffee machine? Why should you use reusable coffee pods?

We have all the answers to these questions above. However, you can contact us for more explanations or if you need help choosing your pods. 

Invigo Coffee should be your go-to for all things coffee pods. We also stock a collection of coffee pods in different flavours. Revitalize your coffee pods experience by trying out any one of our products! 

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