Customers looking for single-serve coffee in a variety of flavors might enjoy the convenience of pod coffee makers. There are several features to consider when looking at this type of machine.
Most pod coffee makers brew one cup of coffee at a time, but there are a few models that have the capacity to brew two cups simultaneously.
Pod coffee makers vary in the way the pods are used. Some manufacturers like Keurig, use proprietary single serve pods called K-cups; Tassimo calls its pods T-discs. Other pod coffee makers accept a variety of pods. For example, Senseo pods fit into a variety of machines. Some pods are reusable and can be filled with a consumer's favorite coffee brands. Typically, pods cost $0.50-$1.00 per cup of coffee.
Some pod coffee makers accept only a single pod, others accept multiple pods at once. This is a feature that appeals to people who like particularly strong coffee. On pod coffee makers that make more than one cup simultaneously, expect it to be able to accept two pods. Mulitple pods are also used on some coffee makers to make mixed drinks that include flavor packets such as caramel lattes or chocolate mochas.
Coffee preferences should play a role in picking a pod coffee maker. Starbucks makes coffee pods, but they do not fit in all pod coffee makers. Some pods come in a variety of flavors including flavored coffees, teas and cocoas. Other pod coffee makers can brew espresso. Examining what's available in pods is as important as looking at the maker itself.
Height-Adjustable Drip Tray
Pod coffee makers with a height adjustable drip tray make it easier to brew coffee directly into a travel mug. Height-adjustable trays and drink-size variety typically go hand in hand. If a machine can brew 6oz, 8oz and 10oz drinks, a height adjustable tray allows for cups to fit that.
Water Tank Capacity
While most pod coffee makers only brew a single cup of coffee at a time, or two cups at the most, many have a water tank that can store enough water for many more cups. A few pod coffee makers only fit enough water to brew a single cup, but others have tanks that fit 40-70 ounces of water. Some of the water tanks can be removed for easy filling and cleaning.