Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Keurig Review



Any fellow coffee lovers out there? I LOVE coffee. In fact, I’m a bit of a coffee snob. I worked at a local coffee shop for about 6 years in my mid-20’s, and I loved {almost} every minute of it. That’s why I was beyond excited when Staples contacted me asking me to review a Keurig coffee maker for them.  They were kind enough to send me the Keurig OfficePRO Coffee Maker, which is an office model, as well as a variety pack of K-cups to review.

 Keurig OfficePRO Single-Cup Commercial Coffee Brewer, Black/SilverKeurig K-Cup Medium Roast Variety Pack Coffee, 48 Pack


My husband and I have been using it for a couple weeks now, and we really love it. I’m going to just lay out some of the pros and cons. I’ll start with the cons to get them out of the way first.


Cons:


 1. Lack of coffee cup customization. The Keurig OfficePRO gives three options for how much coffee to brew per cup: 6oz, 8oz, or 10oz. You use the same size K-cup no matter what size brew you choose, so the smaller cups will be a stronger coffee, and the larger cups will be weaker. I would like a large strong coffee!  A good way to remedy that is to brew two 6oz cups into a large mug. And with my reusable K-cup, it makes a strong enough coffee for me.


  2.    Coffee in the K-cups  is pre-ground, and therefore not as fresh as it could be (I told you, I’m a coffee snob!) They claim that it’s sealed in such a way as to maintain freshness, but I can tell the difference. I prefer to grind my own beans right before I brew, but the reusable K-cup makes that possible, so again, it’s not really a huge issue for me.


 3. K-cup waste. I’m an environmentally minded citizen. I’m trying to rid my life of plastic and disposable convenience items. The K-cup goes absolutely against this. Since the coffee grounds are packaged and sealed in the plastic cup, they can’t even be composted. I would love it if there was a compostable option (think, coffee in a tea bag!)


  4. K-cup cost. Price varies depending on where you buy and what brand, but generally K-cups run about 40-50 cents apiece. A pound of beans from my local coffee shop works out to about 30 cents per cup of coffee, and cheap grocery store coffee is even less. Over time, that price difference really adds up, especially if you go through a lot of coffee like we do.



Pros:


 1. You always get a fresh cup of coffee. This is one of the best things about a Keurig. We normally make a full pot in the morning, and spend the first half of the day drinking it, but by the last cup or two it’s cold and a bit stale. I either dump it or heat it in the microwave, neither of which is a good option for me. This never happens with a Keurig. Since you make one cup at a time, it’s always fresh – as long as you drink it right away.

  2. You only use what you drink. No dumping the last cup or two from the pot that nobody drank, saving money on coffee. I have noticed that we are going through about half the amount of coffee that we used to!


 3. Variety. If you do purchase K-cups, you can get a few different kinds, or a variety pack, and choose with each cup what you want. There is also K-cup tea and cocoa for the non-coffee drinkers. This would be wonderful in an office or break room setting where you have numerous people sharing the same machine. Everybody has the option of making what they want. 


4. My favorite part: The reusable K-cup. Keurig (as well as other brands) have listened to the appeals from us coffee snobs and environmentalists, and created a reusable K-cup that you fill with your own coffee. This eliminates the plastic waste from the single-use K-cups, and gives you the option to grind your own beans, and use any coffee you choose, including beans from your local, independently owned coffee shop (I’m not biased).






I probably wouldn’t use a Keurig if I had to buy disposable K-cups because of the cost and the waste, although they are very convenient. If Keurig would offer a compostable K-cup at a competitive price, I would be more inclined to use that, and I think it would be a great option for the office as well. The reusable filter is great and resolves most of my personal “cons,” but it is a bit of a pain to clean it between each cup (a bit – not a huge deal). It’s fine for me to use at home, but would not be the best option in an office or break room setting, or for entertaining if you are making coffee for a large number of people, in which case I wouldn’t mind buying a variety pack of K-cups, as long as it wasn’t a regular thing. It’s taken some getting used to, but overall, I am very happy with the Keurig, and I won’t be going back to the “old” coffee maker any time soon.


Full disclosure, Staples provided me with this Keurig Coffee Maker to review. All opinions expressed are my own. To see their full line of coffee makers, visit Staples.com

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