The Keurig and Tassimo machines both use plastic cups, known generically as pods, to brew single portions of coffee. We preferred the Keurig, above, shown with the plastic cups or “pods” that contain the single portions of coffee.





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KAREN HOCHMAN is Editorial Director of THE NIBBLE.



December 2005
Updated January 2009

Appliance Review / Kitchenware / Appliances

Keurig & Tassimo Coffee Makers

Invasion Of The Pod Machines

Brewed Coffee Quality at Faster-Than-Instant-Coffee Speed


Thinking of buying a single-serve coffee system? Here’s a review of two of the hot new brands. Also see our review of the Senseo coffee maker. This is Page 1. Click on the links below to visit other pages.


Hot sellers: Do They Belong In Your Kitchen?

Try to buy a coffee maker these days and it’s like buying a car: you can spend four months with a spreadsheet trying to figure out the options. Choose one of the new single-serve machines—they brew one cup of coffee at a time using pre-filled coffee “pods”—and there’s less variety. But the stakes are higher. Similar to printer toner cartridges, you are locked in to a particular brand of pods that fits only the machine you choose.* Unlike toner cartridges, which just come in black or color and do a relatively indistinguishable job of printing on paper, the brands of pods vary widely. Some have very limited options, others are more broad in the number of roasts they offer (dark roast, medium roast, decaf, and hazelnut, e.g.)—and how good the brews taste. If you are just looking for a convenient, quick cup of coffee, none of this will matter to you. If you really notice what your coffee tastes like, it will.

*Most machines can use pods with coffees from different coffee roasters, that are manufactured to their specs. However, the choices are still limited.

Having previously reviewed the inexpensive Senseo single-serve machine from Philips, we spent several months using two in the space at more than twice the price.

  • Keurig, a producer of office coffee machines, introduced a line of smaller machines for home use.
  • Tassimo was developed by Kraft Foods, owners of Gevalia Coffee (the actual machine is made by Saeco, a manufacturer of high-end and professional coffee and cappuccino makers. It was distributed and serviced by consumer electronics specialist Braun. Since our original review, the Braun model was discontinued and an improved Bosch Tassimo has released (by appliance maker Bosch), which we have reviewed separately.

Keurig is derived from the Dutch word for excellence, Tassimo from the Italian word for cup. Both have been selling well in Europe for some time.

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