In this article, we take you through our review of the five best single serve coffee makers without pods for coffee brewed perfectly every time.
Pods are usually a no-no unless you can recycle them. Hardcore coffee drinkers like ourselves also feel that they don’t always meet our standards.
Pods seem somewhat gimmicky for some people. They often don’t offer a better brew compared to instant – at least for us. Reals coffee beans remain the gold standard.
So, if you won’t drink a watery waste of time, and you’re concerned for the environment, here’s the perfect round-up of the Best Single Serve Coffee Makers on the market – no pods needed!
Best Single Serve Coffee Makers That Don’t Use Pods
1. Best Overall: Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker
The best single serve coffee machine for hardcore coffee fans is the Ninja Specialty Coffee Machine, which makes a super-concentrated brew ready in just minutes. Ninja has perfected coffee-making and their product line continues to get rave reviews worldwide.
Their Specialty Coffee Maker is our favorite because of all its options. You can make an unbeatable espresso, cappuccino, latte, macchiato, or iced coffee.
You have 6 size options to choose from. You can grab a quick single espresso or even a full carafe. The milk frother is built-in, handling hot or cold milk equally well and it folds away neatly for easy storage. The machine itself is not bulky and suits any size kitchen.
This coffee maker prevents drips and has smart scoop technology. So you can enjoy a mess-free experience.
The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker is very well-priced, and you don’t need to sacrifice on quality. It is certified by the Specialty Coffee Association (SCA) where it’s put through an intensive testing process, giving you peace of mind as a buyer.
Finally, it’s a good-looking machine and will impress even the fussiest coffee drinkers.
Why We Like It: The Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker’s price is among the lowest on our list, yet it delivers a great single-serve coffee every time.
2. Best Budget: KRUPS XP344C51 Professional Coffee Maker
The KRUPS XP344C51’s specialty is a creamy espresso without any bitter taste. An integrated steam nozzle makes perfect cappuccinos in the comfort of your home. This KRUPS model makes a deep froth, so go for this option if that’s important to you.
The machine can make a single or double espresso for one or two cups at much the same time. The XP344C51 has thermoblock technology meaning this coffee maker heats up fast.
The XP344C51 Professional Coffee Maker is a definite improvement on their previous models. This pod-free coffee maker gives you a real barista experience and yet it is still simple to use. The Calvi Steam and Pump System achieves this.
Why We Like It: The thermoblock tech installed in this KRUPS Professional Coffee Maker means the coffee brew stays warm for longer compared to other models on our list.
3. Best Speciality Machine: Breville BDC650BSS Grind Control Coffee Maker
The Breville BDC650BSS is ideal if you want fine control of the coffee bean grinding process. This matters to coffee connoisseurs who prefer to change the coffee grinding option to suit the coffee bean type. You can also bypass the grinder and add coffee grounds directly.
Connoisseurs will be interested in the impressive 8 strength options. This is exciting as one rarely has so much control over the brewing process.
This Breville coffee machine makes a single serving up to 12 cups, so there is room for when you have guests.
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It is one of the best-looking coffee makers with its brushed steel body and bright LCD screen. The LCD gives real-time feedback. This is helpful for the multi-taskers out there.
The BDC650BSS is specialized but comes at a more attractive price tag for what you get.
Why We Like It: The Breville BDC650BSS is the Best Budget Speciality machine reviewed. This machine brings together beauty and modern coffee innovation.
4. Best Premium: Jura A1 Super Automatic Coffee Machine
Jura’s A1 Super Automatic Coffee Maker is an entry-level machine in the company’s range. But it’s pretty advanced. It is perfect if you like European design and coffee innovation.
The A1 Super Automatic has a speedy prep time. The coffee bean grinder makes a fine grind fast.
Jura has added its Intelligent Pre-Brew Aroma System to this machine. This Swiss tech gets the very best out of your coffee.
It has the rare super-strong ristretto coffee option. It also makes a neat espresso or slow-brewed coffee.
Jura is OCD with hygiene and the A1 Super Automatic has its own cleaning system. That is helpful if you are busy.
We like this machine because it has Jura’s Clearyl Blue Water Filter. The filter ensures your coffee tastes great even if the water isn’t the best.
The coffee maker is TÜV-certified so it meets German safety standards.
Why We Like It: There’s plenty packed into this single-cup coffee maker. The Jura Super Automatic A1 is a good investment for the coffee connoisseur or hardcore addict.
5. Best Basic: Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker
The Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker is incredibly easy to use. It won the Good Housekeeping Award for Very Innovative Products (VIP) for this reason.
All you need to do is place the filled-up scoop in the machine, press a button, and in less than 2 minutes you will have a hot cuppa.
This Hamilton machine is straight-forward with 2 options: regular or bold. It’s ideal for on-the-go brewing as it is light. It is the best option for single people who don’t need multiple coffee-making options.
Hamilton’s Beach Scoop machine has smart features. It won’t start brewing unless there is water in the reservoir. You can adjust the nozzle height up to a large travel mug size.
Why We Like It: The Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker is the best easy-to-use option. The price-tag is good for what you get. If well-cared for, this machine will last for years.
Imagine waking up one morning and your coffee maker isn’t working! What can you do!?
We’ve got you covered with all of the details you need to make the coffee when you have no maker on hand.Learn More
Buyers’ Guide for Coffee Makers with No Pods
The first thing to do when buying any product is to consider your budget. One thing to bear in mind is that you are not going to be spending on individual pods.
The coffee makers we have reviewed start from less than $70. They are all reliable and will be a good investment if you match the machine to your needs.
There is no need to spend more than $200 for a machine that delivers a single coffee serving at a time. You can even find a great machine with some specialty options for around $150.
If you are in the market for something fancier with lots of coffee-making options, look at coffee makers from around $300.
If it is something extremely important to you or you really want to impress, there are premium single-serve coffee machines over $400. These machines have innovative tech, some can clean themselves, and they look amazing.
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It is wise to buy a coffee maker that comes with at least a one-year warranty. You do not need to buy the most expensive machine to get good quality.
Looking carefully at third-party tests will give you more assurance than choosing based on price alone. A number of the machines reviewed have this in place. User reviews give assurance as to durability.
Consider whether you will use specialty coffee options available in certain models. This includes lattes, iced coffee, and coffees that are even stronger than an espresso. If not, choose a simpler machine.
Find the machine that is known to make your preferred coffee type well. This could be a creamy cappuccino with tall foam or a slow-brewed cuppa, according to your needs.
Also look at brewing speed and strength, as choosing based on these factors will ensure the coffee maker meets your needs.
Capacity is another factor. Decide whether you want a dedicated single-serve machine, or if you want the option to make several cups at a time.
Generally, the more specialized or complex the machine, the more attention it will need. Some premium machines are self-cleaning, while some budget options are simply designed so that you do not need to spend a lot of time cleaning them.
Your Questions on Single Serve Coffee Makers with No Pods (FAQs)
Will I save money if I get a coffee machine that does not use pods?
You can definitely save money by not using pods because of the additional packaging that pods come in. Depending on the coffee brand you choose, you can often spend less on coffee beans and grounds compared to single-use pods.
Used coffee grounds have further uses, like adding them to your compost heap. You will also be helping the environment by avoiding pods that are not recyclable.
What if I want the option to use pods and coffee grounds in the same single-serve machine?
There are dual-purpose coffee machines to suit both of these needs. Try the EZBASICS Dual Single Serve Coffee Maker:
Or the Cuisinart SS-20 Coffee Center for the best of both worlds:
Do any pod-free coffee machines offer the same convenience as pods?
Often people choose pods because they are less messy, simple and fast to use. If you want a coffee machine that combines this convenience without pods, it is wise to choose a machine that is easy to clean.
Look at machines that make it quick and easy for you to load coffee beans and grounds. Many smart tech machines will heat up quickly and deliver the coffee you love in less than two minutes.
There are also many well-priced coffee machines with innovative tech that prevents messing. Self-cleaning options can be expensive, but you may see this as a worthwhile investment.
The clear winner in this round-up of the Best Single Serve Coffee Makers with No Pods is the Ninja Speciality Coffee Machine. The Ninja is a fantastic all-rounder for anti-pod hardcore coffee drinkers.
We can personally attest to this machine’s reliability. It offers the best value for money and it still receives the highest reviews worldwide.
If you want super-strength without sacrificing specialty options, go for the Ninja Speciality Coffee Machine. You will appreciate how attractive this Ninja model looks with its glass carafe.
We appreciate the quality certification of the Ninja Speciality Coffee Machine which gives you peace of mind. We’re confident it’s the best single serve all-rounder on the market because of the brand’s ongoing popularity.
First runner-up is the speedy KRUPS XP344C51 Professional Coffee Maker. It’s the best single serve budget machine. That is not to say it is a basic machine. It has the advantage of the tallest froth of all the options. It is a great option for coffee drinkers who want the barista experience at home.
Second runner-up is the flexible Breville BDC650BSS. It is the best option for those who want an integrated grinder. You can make a single-serve or up to a dozen cups at a time.
Even the fussiest connoisseur will be thrilled with the 8 strength and 6 grinding options. It looks great with its LCD screen and brushed steel body. Breville is known to be a solid, reliable brand.
Our other two options have specific advantages of their own.
The Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker remains popular for its easy-to-use design. If you don’t need an array of options, go for this coffee maker. You will certainly be happy with how fast it works.
Coffee drinkers who want a reliable portable coffee maker won’t be disappointed by this Hamilton Beach Scoop model.
The Jura A1 Super Automatic Coffee Maker is for you if you are ready to break into the big leagues. We are really impressed by the beautiful European design of this machine. Jura has not skimped on this entry-level single-serve machine. It has the best Swiss coffee innovation.
The Jura A1 is not cheap, but it’s a sound investment for hardcore addicts. The self-cleaning machine makes it worth the price for busy professionals and those concerned with hygiene.