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Ever wonder how many plastic K-Cup pods go into landfills each year? Billions. Yes, you read that right – billions. About 41 percent of Americans own a single-serve coffee maker, and that number rises each year. K-Cups have actually been around since 2004 but didn’t hit their stride until 2012. From there, popularity skyrocketed. Despite the elevated price, consumers (like myself, admittedly) enjoy using K Cups because they are easy and neat. You have way less of a mess to clean up, and brewing time is much more efficient than your run-of-the-mill drip coffee maker.
Now, you can choose to use reusable K cup pods. But which is the best reusable K Cup pod? Some are truly better than others, and we are going to let you know which ones we think are worthy of your purchase.
A K-Cup will, on average, cost you about four times more than the same amount of coffee grounds. Buying a Keurig might seem like a money-saver at first, but given the price of K-Cups (which often come in 10- or 12-cup packages), a reusable Keurig cup is much more affordable.
Reusable coffee pods keep waste out of landfills. Single-use pods are such an environmental problem that even their inventor, John Sylvan, regrets designing them. Tens of billions of them end up cluttering landfills each year.
Reusable pods are far more sustainable. Use, clean, dry, use again – it’s that simple. In fact, my biggest argument for using a reusable K Cup filter is that it puts less stress on our environment.
Let’s be honest here; there’s nothing so delicious as freshly ground coffee. I like to put whole beans into my vintage coffee grinder before pouring them into my reusable K cup to brew. The taste is bar none. And the ability to choose whichever flavor I want is what reeled me in, to begin with. And isn’t that what we all want from our in-home coffee makers?
Are you brand-loyal to Keurig? Or just looking for a K Cup filter that is durable? If so, give the Keurig Reusable Universal Coffee Filter a try. This Keurig coffee filter is compatible with all Keurig 1.0 and 2.0 models, and that does include the Mini and Plus series. However, the design might be slightly too tall for some of the earlier Keurig models.
This cup has a three-part design: a basket, a filter holder, and a lid. There is also a Plus series adapter that you can remove if you are going to use it with the Keurig Classic. Just remember that more parts do equal more clean-up. But the brew size fill lines are superbly handy, making it compatible even with travel mugs. Of course, if you just want one small cup of coffee, the Keurig Reusable Universal Coffee Filter can do that too.
Also, a friendly warning: These cups can only be used for brewing ground coffee. They do not work with tea, hot cocoa, or any other type of loose-powered beverage. And this just goes across the board for the K Cup filter.
K-Elite, K-Select, K-Classic, K-Slim, K-Mini, K-Mini Plus, K-Duo, K-Duo Plus, K-Duo Essentials, K-Cafe, K-Latte, Keurig Plus / 2.0 models
While a reusable Keurig cup is not all that expensive, anything from the Keurig brand tends to price a little higher than the competition. If you are looking for a more cost-effective option, check out the Maxware Refillable Filter. This set of four reusable coffee pods only sets you back by a few bucks.
Not only are they inexpensive, but they're known for their durability and ability to brew stronger coffee than the K-Cup pods. These pods are also truly easy to clean and can be put out to try with the rest of your dishes. Just be careful while filling them with coffee grounds; if you overfill the basket, you will not be able to properly close the lid and get the pod into the coffee maker.
The drawback? They are not compatible with the Keurig Mini coffee maker. Otherwise, they work with just about every other machine. If you do have a Mini sitting atop your counter, you will have to skip the Maxware Refillable Filters.
Keurig 1.0 & 2.0, K200(Before 2016)K300, K350, K360, K450, K460, K500, K550, K560,K575(Does Not Work with Keurig Mini)
Who knew you could put 24-karat gold into a Keurig coffee filter? Well, as it turns out, you can. The DI ORO MaxBrew K-Cup Reusable Filter has a rather unique design. Its 24-karat gold honeycomb patterned MaxBrew filter is both aesthetically pleasing and fully functional when it comes to filtering out grounds. In fact, DI ORO promises a better-tasting coffee because of how well this filter works.
The metal used to create the honeycomb pattern does not absorb any of the natural oils from your coffee or give off a weird taste in your cup. Instead, you get tasty coffee from a product that is free from BPA, DEHP, and lead. Zero harmful chemicals will be found here.
The design quality shows durability, so you get a long-lasting product for a price that competes with the Keurig Universal model. The DI ORO K Cup filter is dishwasher-safe, so you can easily place it in with the rest of your load.
Note that you might need to use K-Cup paper filters with this model in order to keep excess grounds from seeping into your coffee. Of course, that takes away from affordability and sustainability factors.
Compatible with Keurig 1.0 & 2.0 brewers: K200, K250, K300, K350, K360, K400, K450, K460, K500, K550, K560
Another stainless steel basket design comes in the form of the EZ-Cup Stainless Steel Reusable K Cup Filters. If you aren't too terribly keen on using something that is predominantly made from plastic, then the EZ-Cup reusable K Cups might be a good option for you. The body is made from a significant amount of metal. There is also a 100% BPA-free silicone O-ring, and the water inlet has a deep reach that leads to more precision while brewing. Of course, the micro-mesh siding does a thorough job of retaining grounds particles.
One of the best parts is that these filters are universally compatible with Keurig models. Use them with a Keurig 1.0 or 2.0. You can even use them with single-serve Cuisinart coffee makers. You will, however, want to get the paper flip-top filters to go with these coffee filters for minimum clean-up. Again, those paper filters take away from affordability and sustainability, but they really do aid in the clean-up process with certain refillable pods.
The one drawback is that some of the designs you get (especially the cups with the dolphin cut-outs) do not lend to a quick brew. Instead, brewing takes a little more time to complete. With the bottoms being solid, the water tends to back up into the filter... eventually. This process leads to a less-than-full cup.
Compatible with: 155, K200, K250, K300, K350, K360, K400, K450, K460, K475, K500, K550, K560, K575, K15, K40, K45, K50, K55, K60, K70, K75, K145, K150, B30, B31, B40, B50, B60, B70, B77, B140, B145, and B200. Also compatible with these brewers: K-Elite, K-Select, K-Classic, K-Ultra, K-Special Edition, K-Ultimate, K- Platinum. Can be used with single-serve Cuisinart coffee brewers.
Looking for something with a solid stainless steel mesh design to release maximum flavor (but not bits of coffee grounds)? The IPartsPlusMore Reusable K-Cup Filters are about to extract flavor without dumping extra pieces of grounds into your cup, which is a flaw inherent in many other reusable filter pods.
These pods also have the advantage of being able to filter loose-leaf tea. Again, that is not something that a lot of other reusable Keurig cup filters can do. So, if you want to brew yourself a hot cuppa, just pop your favorite tea into this pod, stick it into its slot in the coffee maker, and set it to your preferred cup size.
Use these pods with most of the newer Keurig models, but be aware that they are not compatible with every Keurig. They will not work with the K-Duo, K-Mini, K-Mini Plus, K-Compact, GE or LG Refrigerators, K-400, or K-155. So, be careful before you go to buy these filters.
I should also mention that these reusable pods do not break down easily. The stainless steel mesh provides a lot of durability, and even the lid is flexible without being prone to snapping off. Their leak-free design makes for quick clean-up, especially since you can just pop them into the dishwasher.
Compatible with Keurig 1.0 & 2.0: K200, K250, K300, K350, K360, K450, K460, K500, K550, K560, K15, K31, K40, K44, K45, K50, K60, K66, K70, K77, K80, K100, B31, B40, B44, B50, B60, B66, B70, B77, B100, B140, B200. Also compatible with: Keurig Elite, Select, Classic, Ultra, Special Edition, Ultimate, and Platinum. Compatible with Breville K Cup and Mr. Coffee K Cup. Will not work with Keurig K400, Mini, or Compact.
One of the things you need to bear in mind while looking for a reusable K Cup is just how durable it is going to be. You don’t want a cheap plastic contraption that will break down in a month or two. Instead, you want to find something that can hold up against the heat from your coffee maker as well as the turbulence of your dishwasher cycle. You should be able to drop one without the lid breaking off. That is why I always look for stainless steel or 24-karat gold baskets and lids with a BPA-free O-ring underneath.
All too often, buyers get refillable pods that do not fit with their particular coffee maker. While this at least is not an expensive “oops”, it still sets you back at least $10. Be sure to check for model compatibility. Most packages and online listings should give the exact models that the cups are compatible with, and if you are unsure, browse through the reviews left by consumers.
Even if something says “universal”, you should still double-check the packaging to ensure that this particular K Cup filter will indeed fit inside of your single-serve brewer. Otherwise, you will either have to return the filter or pawn it off on someone else.
Reusable K Cups should be easy to use, but sometimes, they aren’t. Let’s just put it this way: The more parts it has, the more you will have to move it around, take them out, and risk losing them. Adjustable and removable parts can be helpful but also really annoying to keep track of. This is something to bear in mind if you are concerned about total ease of use.
A few dollars is usually the difference between a “cheap” K Cup filter and an “expensive” one. But you might still be tempted to buy the more affordable ones just to save those couple of bucks. Reusable filters tend to pay for themselves in the long run regardless of the upfront cost, but shoppers on a tight budget might want to stick to buying affordably-priced multi-pod packs. Try getting a pack of four or six pods to help with affordability. Plus it is always a good idea to have multiple pods on hand in case you misplace one or a pod somehow gets broken.
Whenever I need to check a reusable Keurig cup for compatibility with my coffee maker, I always look on the back of the package. If I see my Keurig model listed on there, I will snag that cup. Of course, when shopping online, you will need to read through the listing’s specs to see the list of compatible coffee makers. If you don’t see yours on there, check the Q&A section and consumer reviews on the website.
Measure out two tablespoons of grounds. Most K Cup filters can hold precisely this amount but not more. Scooping some out might be required with a deeper water filter.
Regular coffee grounds will work in a Keurig reusable cup. Pick any flavor that you want. You can grind whole beans and put those grounds in too.
Reusable cups can last for years given that they are thoroughly washed and dried after each use. They do not typically break easily either.
Reusable K Cups are generally BPA-free and are considered safe to use. They can withstand intense heat generated in coffee makers.
Pour two tablespoons of grounds into the K -Cup, then place it inside the coffee maker. Pick your preferred settings and let the coffee brew.
Most reusable K Cup filters are able to get the job done and are far more environmentally-friendly than a single-use K-Cup pod. They are also significantly cheaper in the long-term, which makes them all the more attractive to buy. The best part is, they enhance coffee flavor better than regular K-Cup pods, which tend to retain flavor within their plasticky confines. Instead, flavor pours forth with all the coffee’s natural oils intact.
I picked the Keurig Reusable Universal Coffee Filter as the best reusable K Cup for a few reasons. One, it is manufactured by a brand with an excellent reputation. And, since it is made by Keurig, you can rest assured that the “Universal” in its name is quite accurate. Slide that sucker into any Keurig model, including the Plus and Mini series. Many other reusable K Cups are not compatible with the Mini, but this one is.
I also picked the Keurig filter because it is known for being extremely durable. Unlike some reusable pods that break down over time, these ones seem to last forever. Just give them a wash and let them dry after each use, and they will hold up well for a long time. They pay off in dividends in the long-run despite being a little pricier than average upfront.