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Everything You Should Know About Grind Size for Coffee Pods

by Alex Bider 30 Oct 2020
Grind Size for Coffee Pods

So you've hopped on the train of reusable coffee pod users, congratulations! You've made an excellent decision. Indeed, your taste buds, wallet, and most importantly, the environment will thank you for it. However, for many newcomers to the reusable pod scene, the grind size for coffee pods usually raises several questions. Well, we've all been there.

How do I choose the grind size of my coffee pods? What is the best grind size for coffee pods? Am I doing it wrong?

Are these same questions or similar variations running through your mind mine? Well, we have good news for you! This article will equip you with all the information you need to have a smooth and enjoyable experience with coffee pods. All you need to do is sit tight, keep reading, and enjoy the ride to a better understanding of coffee grind sizes.

Without a doubt, one of the keys to a great cup of coffee is the quality of your coffee grounds. In other words, the way you grind your coffee will go a long way in influencing the final brew. You see, with coffee pods, the machine forces hot water through your coffee grounds to brew that oh-so-lovely liquid. However, the size of your grounds impacts the efficacy of the system.

If your grind size is too small, water will not get through. Too coarse, and the water gushes through it (you don't want that). What then is the optimal grind size for coffee pods?

Well, you're in the right place. In the course of this blog post, we will share insight into the best grind size for coffee pods. We will also help you understand why grind size is so vital to the quality of your coffee. But first, what exactly is the grind size for coffee pods?

What does 'Grind Size' for Coffee Pods Mean?

Making higher quality coffee in your home is not impossible. However, you will need to take extra care to correctly get some details – the correct water temperature, the accurate weight of coffee, and, most importantly, optimal grind size. Before we dive into the details about the perfect grind size for coffee pods, let us explore what it is.

Of all the details that go into brewing top-of-the-line coffee, grind size is arguably one of the most crucial. In other words, the grind size of your coffee pods truly matters. This begs the question, 'What is grind size for coffee pods?'

Coffee grind size is essentially the standard for measuring the characteristics of your coffee grounds. That is, how coarsely or how finely you grind your coffee. It may be impossible to overemphasize how crucial the size of your grounds is to getting top-notch coffee. This is especially true if your preferred method of brewing is reusable coffee pods.

With grind size for coffee pods, the goal is to achieve the optimal size to facilitate the ultimate flavour and aroma extraction. You see, you cannot afford to over-grind or under-grind your coffee grounds. The reason is simple – the grind size affects how quickly or slowly water passes through your coffee – which is the key to your coffee's quality.

If your grind size is too large (in other words, too coarse), the hot water will blast through without taking those essential flavours. On the flip side, if your grind size is too small for your coffee pods, the water will carry flavours you don't want along with it. In other words, the best grind size for coffee pods aims to strike a balance in the middle.

You're probably, 'how should I know the perfect grind size for coffee pods?' Please don't panic. We're here for you. We will provide you with all you should know about grind size for coffee pods.

This way, you can upgrade from the subpar, probably bitter coffee you've been brewing and step into the world of top-notch coffee.

To ensure that you get the bigger picture, we recommend you read this next part slowly. Now that you know what grind size for coffee pods is let us take you through a section on why an optimal size is essential.

Related article: How Many Times Can You Use Coffee Pods?

Why the Grind Size for Your Coffee Pod Matters

Grind size is everything in the business of top-quality coffee brewing. Okay, that may be a bit of exaggeration. But, grind size for coffee pods is an essential factor you cannot afford to be careless with. You see, the size of your coffee grounds influences three critical variables that impact the taste, aroma and quality of your coffee. These variables are:

  • The extraction rate. The larger the surface area of your coffee grounds, the more the extraction rate increases. As a rule of thumb, the more finely you grind your coffee, the larger its surface area.
  • The contact time. This is the amount of time water takes before it flows out of the coffee pods and into your cup as coffee. Generally, the higher the rate of extraction, the less contact time your coffee grounds need.
  • Flow rate. This describes how fast or slow water can get through your coffee grounds. Small grind sizes will result in a lower flow rate and, consequently, more contact time.

Understandably, all these variables may not make sense to you yet. So, to ensure that you know all you should about grind size for coffee pods, we'll give you some background information on the coffee extraction theory.

Grinding your coffee is essentially a way to expose your coffee beans' surface area to hot water during extraction. Therefore, if you finely grind your coffee beans, you generate more particles per bean. As a result, the surface area of coffee grounds that the hot water will work on becomes larger. The reverse is the case for large grind sizes.

Now extraction and its accompanying rate are at the core of the coffee brewing process. To get a cup of coffee, your coffee pod machine must force hot water through the pod, thereby extracting flavours from the beans.

Now here is why grind size for coffee pods is important. During the brewing process, you must match the contact time and flow rate to the coffee's exposed surface area. In other words, your grind size must fit your brewing time. Otherwise, it may result in you grinding your teeth (pun intended) when you drink your coffee.

If the contact time is too long for a particular size, the coffee grounds will undergo over-extraction. The result of this is a bitter taste in your coffee. You have probably experienced this before. On the contrary, a brewing cycle that is too short will result in coffee with a bland taste due to under-extraction. In summary, it is crucial you find that perfect balance between your coffee pod machine and your grind size.

You're probably now wondering how to choose the grind size for coffee pods. We'll get there shortly. Let us look at the various types of grind sizes that exist. This information will come in handy when we present you with our grind size chart.

The Main Grind Sizes for Coffee Pods

By now, you should have some background knowledge on what grind size for coffee pods is and its relevance to coffee quality. That said, let us look at some of the types of coffee grind sizes. Note that not all of them may be applicable for you to see in your coffee pods.

Notwithstanding, it is essential that we cover all bases. So here is a grind size chart to show you the various sizes of coffee grounds:

  1. Extra-coarse coffee grounds
  2. Coarse coffee grounds
  3. Medium-course grounds
  4. Medium coffee grounds
  5. Medium-fine coffee grounds
  6. Fine coffee grounds
  7. Super-fine coffee grounds

Well, these are the various grind sizes that exist. Now, let move to the next step of our journey into all you should know about grind sizes for coffee pods. Keep reading to discover how to choose the optimal grind size for your coffee pods.

The Best Grind Size for Coffee Pods

When it comes to coffee grounds for reusable pods, we recommend only one grind size – fine grounds. Indeed, it is the perfect blend of coarseness and fineness you need to brew top-quality coffee. In other words, medium-fine grind size is just sufficient enough to allow hot water to pass through without extracting unwanted flavours. Also, it has an optimum level, which enables the extraction of those lovely flavours.

With fine coffee grounds, the water in your pod machine has to work a little harder to get through the coffee. This results in a contact time of about 20 to 30 seconds, which is still bearable. In less than a minute, you'd have rich and strong aromatic coffee pouring out into your cup. This means that you don't lose out on flavours, or even colour, resulting from wrong grind sizes.

Here's a little more on how to choose the right grind size for coffee pods. Interestingly, finely-ground coffee is not the only grind size for coffee pods that can fetch you satisfactory results. Another class of grind size may be able to brew you an optimal cup of coffee.

Medium-fine coffee grounds have shown that they can also do the job in most reusable coffee pods. All you have to do is make sure to fill the pod to the top and tamp it firmly. Then, you know the drill. Slot the coffee pod into your machine and push the magical button. Within a minute, you'd have your steaming cup of joe in hand.

So there – you now know the best grind size for coffee pods. We also provided you with a next-best, just in case. When you buy coffee pods in Canada, you know the various options of grind sizes to excellent results. Indeed, there is no doubt that grind size can make the difference between the best coffee you've had and a bitter mess. Take our word for it. We've been there!

If you ever feel like your coffee is weaker than you'd like, the problem may lie in the grind size for the coffee pod. Next time, try to make the coffee grounds a little finer than you made them before. That should do the trick.

However, if the strength of your coffee assaults your tongue, or perhaps it's too bitter, the grounds may be too fine. Test out brewing with slightly more coarse coffee grounds and see if that works. All in all, it may take a little experimentation on your part to find the perfect grind size for your coffee pods. But, the above recommendations have given you a head-start.

In the spirit of 'all you should about grind size for coffee pods,' let us talk a little bit about achieving these various sizes.

Grind Size for Coffee Pods: What Grinders Should I use?

Now that you know how to choose the grind size for your coffee pods, you are probably wondering how to get the grounds to that size. We've got you covered.

Generally, you have two options for grinding your coffee beans to the size you want. They are:

  • Blade grinders
  • Burr grinders

In the next few paragraphs, we'll explore both options and see how they impact you getting an optimal grind size for coffee pods. 

Blade Grinders

While blade grinders can undoubtedly get your coffee beans to smaller sizes, they generally may not be the best choice for you. Indeed, many experts in the field of coffee brewing describe blade grinders as 'the enemy of a balanced coffee.' Don't worry. We'll help you understand the reason for this rationale.

Blade grinders essentially comprise a grinding chamber complete with a spinning blade at its center. Although this may seem very practical for slicing up stuff, they don't work well on coffee beans. This is because it is difficult, if not impossible, to achieve a fine uniform blend with this blade. This may negatively impact the coffee grounds in the pods during brewing.

You see, as the blades of the grinder spins, it chops the coffee beans into disorderly grounds of all shapes and sizes. This results in coffee grounds with no discernible pattern or precision of grind sizes. The fact that you can only control the grinding chamber by pushing the power button compounds the problem. In other words, you can precisely determine how finely it grinds the entire batch of coffee.

Moreover, the speed of the blades results in the production of heat, which is another problem. The heat can cause your coffee grounds to taste burnt.

However, that is not to say the blade grinder does not have its advantages. For one, it is a more affordable means of grinding your coffee beans for your pod. Also, if you're out of time and you need to grind coffee quickly, the blade grinder can be your go-to.


  • It is more affordable.
  • It has a straightforward mode of operation. Usually has a one-button control.
  • It is fast in its operation.
  • It is relatively simple to clean.
  • It has a compact build and will take less of your countertop.


  • It produces inconsistent results.
  • It is generally less capable of grinding coffee.
  • It may 'burn' the coffee, which may affect the flavour.

That said, let us explore the second option of grinding coffee beans.

Burr Grinder

Now, this is a reliable method of obtaining optimal grind size for coffee pods. Burr grinders differ from blade grinders in several fundamental ways. However, it is these differences that make them so much more effective. 

Burr grinders use an internal pressure and rotational mechanism to crush coffee beans into perfect grounds. This means that this machine does not chop the beans up at random. Instead, it offers a significantly more uniform and precise grinding process. 

Moreover, they are easily adjustable. There are various settings ranging from fine to medium and medium-coarse on some models. However, you have to be careful as the same setting on different models may not give you the same results. 

Also, you can choose to grind at lower or higher speeds without any reduction in its efficiency. The best part? Burr grinders do not produce heat, which means you don't have to worry about losing flavour. In essence, if you want a consistent grind size for your coffee pods, the burr grinder can help you achieve that. However, its operation may be a tad noisy. 


  • It results in a  uniform grind, which can help you brew better coffee.
  • It has a broad range of adjustments you can make in its operation. 
  • It preserves the flavour of your coffee grounds. 


  • It is slower to use
  • It is not very quiet when in operation.
  • It is more costly to acquire.

Now that you know what the best grind size for your coffee pod is and how to achieve it let's go a step further. For our last stop on this tour into all you should know about grind size for coffee pods, let us see how to choose the right coffee beans.

Choosing the Right Beans for Your Coffee Pods

The right coffee bean is the final piece you need in the jigsaw puzzle to brewing outstanding coffee. When you buy your coffee pods in Canada, you've only taken the first step to ensuring a consistent flow of top-quality coffee. The next step is to choose and buy coffee beans that suit your taste. In light of that, we'll give you some pointers.

In the past, buying coffee beans used to be a more straightforward activity. After all, there was a limited variety of options in terms of roasts, blends, flavour, and even origin. However, with recent innovation in agriculture and processing methods, coffee lovers now have a much more extensive range of options. Understandably, this ever-increasing variety of coffee can make decision-making a challenging task.

This is why we've created a comprehensive guide to choosing the right coffee beans. Remember, the grind size for coffee pods is only a part of the puzzle. The coffee beans you use will influence how your coffee turns out - optimal grind size or not.

That said, here are a few tips on how to pick excellent coffee beans for your reusable pods.

Watch out for the roast colour

Roasting is the process of heating green coffee beans at high temperatures to boost its aroma. Indeed a flawed roasting process can ruin the best coffee. Although you don't control the roasting process, there is a way to ensure you buy only the best coffee roasts. The key is in the colours.

If the roast does not have a dark colour, the coffee beans will likely be too acidic. On the flip side, if it's too dark (burnt), the coffee will, no doubt, be bitter. However, somewhere in the middle lies that perfect roast.

Generally speaking, a medium to dark roast is the best for a coffee pod machine. By combining this colour guide with the best grind size for coffee pods, you're on your way to oh-so-lovely cups of coffee.

Always choose freshly roasted coffee

With coffee, fresher is always better. After roasting, coffee beans will only retain their excellent taste and aroma for about a month sealed in a bag. Any time after that and you may not be getting the best.

Therefore, you should check the roast date on any bag of coffee beans you want to buy. If a particular brand does not offer these dates (on the bags or elsewhere), it may not be best to buy them.

Arabica or Robusta? Maybe both?

There is no right or wrong answer here. Instead, it depends on your personal preference and what your taste buds 'say.' Arabica coffee beans offer a more pleasing range of aroma. On the other hand, Robusta has a better handle on the crema-quality and intensity side of things.

You may choose to go with pure Arabica or Robusta in your coffee. There's also the option of combining both to create an appealing blend. But, you may need to experiment a little to find your perfect combination. However, if you favour an intense and powerful cup of coffee, then Robusta is the way to go.

Final Take

So there you have it — that is all you should know about grind size for coffee pods. We even threw a bonus section on how to choose suitable coffee beans to grind. By combining this information with the recommended grind size for coffee pods, the resulting coffee can only be better. However, perfecting your grind size takes some practice, so keep grinding!

Are you looking to buy reusable coffee pods in Canada? Check out our online store for coffee pods. We boast an impressive collection of coffee pods to fit any grind size. Check it out today!


Related article: How To Clean And Maintain Your Coffee Pods Machine

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