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4 must-have pod coffeemaker features

Some single-serve coffeemakers are more versatile than others

Published: July 30, 2014 05:45 PM

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Manufacturers tell us that speed and convenience outrank taste for pod coffeemaker buyers. But Consumer Reports’ Facebook fans put taste at the top of their wish lists. Here are ways to get a better cup of coffee from a pod coffeemaker with less work—and with less harm to the planet from all of those plastic pods:

Check the controls. Models that scored well for brewing range let you dial in a stronger brew by adding less water. Some let you use two pods at once.
Coffeemaker with this feature: Tru CMP-6, $90. (Senseo-like pods)
Consider the selection. Many pod models make tea, hot chocolate, and even soup, as well as a variety of coffees. Those that use Keurig’s K-Cups also accept loose coffee in refillable pods.
Coffeemaker with this feature: Mr. Coffee BVMC-KG5, $8. (K-Cups)

Look for labor-savers. Removable reservoirs can be filled at the sink. Adjustable drip trays let you fit a larger cup, and built-in water filters can help eliminate off-tastes from your tap.
Coffeemaker with this feature: DeLonghi Nescafé Dolce Gusto Genio EDG455T, $130, our top-rated pod machine. (Nescafe capsules)

Keep plastic pods out of landfills. Soft pods such as Senseo’s are made of biodegradeable paper, which breaks down readily. Most plastic pods, including Keurig’s newer Vue Packs, use polypropylene and are recyclable in communities that accept No. 5 plastic. Keurig’s mixed-plastic K-Cups are more difficult to recycle; the company plans to make all of its pods recyclable by 2020.
Coffeemaker with this feature: Gevalia G90 Reversible Pod, $35. (Senseo-like pods)

More coffeemaker recommendations
See our Coffeemaker Buying Guide for full Ratings and recommendations of pod, drip, and electric French press coffeemakers.

—Ed Perratore

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