7 On Your Side
The hidden cost of single-serve coffeemakers
If you brew your own coffee in the morning and use a single-serving coffeemaker the cost of those coffee pods could add up. Consumer Reports exclusively partnered up with 7 On Your Side's Michael Finney to test alternatives that can help save you money.
It's no surprise that single-serve coffeemakers are growing in popularity. Their convenience is tough to beat, however the cost of those little disposable pods are pricy. The average owner uses more than 1,000 K-Cups per year. Consumer Reports tried out alternatives to those traditional K-Cups or pods that promise to reduce costs. They checked out three that let you use your own coffee.
"To compare we looked at how much it would cost to brew one cup of coffee per day for a year and for K-Cups that's about $220-$275," said Desiree Ferenczi of Consumer Reports.
In addition to costs, testers also looked at convenience, brew time, and taste.
First up is simple cups which claims it's a fraction of what a K-Cup will cost. For instance, $14 will buy you a pack of 50 disposable cups, filters and lids.
"When you add in the price of coffee it is less; about $185 per year," Ferenczi said.
But testers found the cups are hard to close and the brew time was a little longer than the traditional K-Cup.
Then there is the reusable EZ-Cup for $13, plus about $8 more for 50 of its biodegradable filters. With coffee it works out to about $135 a year. The EZ-Cup was more difficult to use than the simple cups.
So how did the coffee taste? In tests, using the same coffee, all three delivered similar results.
In the end, My K-Cup, Keurig's K-Cup adapter was the clear winner. Testers found it was the easiest to use. And once you purchase the reusable My K-Cup for $18, your only expense is the coffee which is an estimated $80 a year. That's a big money saver.
Another plus for Keurig's My K-Cup is that they are more environmentally friendly than the other pods.
If all this has you longing for a single-serve coffee machine that can use the alternative my K-Cups, consider the Cuisinart SS-300 Compact Single Serve for $130. In Consumer Reports tests it delivered a speedy first cup of coffee and is very easy to use.
Consumer Reports is published by Consumers Union. Both Consumer Reports and Consumers Union are not-for-profit organizations that accept no advertising. Neither has any commercial relationship with any advertiser or sponsor on this site.
(All Consumer Reports Material Copyright 2011. Consumers Union of U.S. Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.)
coffee, consumer reports, 7 on your side, michael finney
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