Nespresso Vs Keurig Review: Which Single Serve Coffee Machine Wins?
Nespresso vs Keurig
The Nespresso vs Keurig debate has plagued many coffee forums for years. These are two of the biggest names in the world of coffee, creating a divide between loyal customers. Both brands manufacture coffee machines of the highest quality, making it very tough when choosing between the two. In this article, we shall pit the top models of each brand against each other and see which one comes out on top.
The two models we shall focus on in this review will be the Nespresso Vertuo and the Keurig K-Café. There are other models, but these two are top of the line and are very much alike, so it makes for a fair comparison. While there are some amazing Nespreso machines we recommend that you take a look at, we'll stick with the Vertuo for just today. This should make it easier for you to make a purchasing decision for when you want to buy that new single serve coffee machine for your home or office.
As a brand, Keurig targets the average coffee drinker. Think of this as your grandparents, or the average family that lives on your street. Boring, yet stable. This is evident in the build of their models, simple and easy.
With Keurig, you still have an array of options, but these aren't anything too over the top. The coffee is good and the efficiency of the machinery is top notch as well. Overall, Keurig has built itself up as a trusted coffee machine manufacturer, the top tier within the single serve coffee realm.
For Keurig, the K-Café is their leading model, and it is obvious why. It is reasonably priced, and it is easy to use, giving you great tasting coffee thanks to the well known k cup. While these single serve coffee makers aren't meant to replace your full sized coffee pot, they are a great secondary option to have if you find yourself constantly on the go.
It also comes with a portable frother that can be used to make lattes and cappuccinos, something most drip coffee makers lack. With a huge 60-ounce water reservoir, you can easily brew up to six cups of coffee without refilling. For a single-serve, you can brew several 2-ounce shots of cappuccinos and lattes to a full 12-ounce coffee.
Nespresso, owned and founded by Nestle, is more suited for aficionados of coffee and espresso. With Nespresso you get the rich, strong, and crema filled cup of coffee that many yearn for. While drinking coffee or espresso from a Nespresso, you may find yourself day dreaming as you visualize yourself walking down the streets of Italy with your latte.
While Nespresso machines aren't cheap, they are a great budget friendly option if you desire a cheaper alternative to that of our recommended home espresso machines. With the best machines, you get the quality and consistency of something like a Breville, and the simplicity of a single serve coffee maker.
The Vertuo is the top model from Nespresso, and it comes with the full package. This model offers an authentic taste that very few can match it. It is easy to operate, and comes with proprietary pods that will provide consistent, crema-packed flavor shots, guaranteed to caffeinate your day.
All it takes to operate is the push of a single button to get the water heated, and in 15 seconds, or less, you'll see that marvelous and rich brew trickle into your cup. It is a simple and straightforward process, much easier than filling a portafilter on an espresso machine.
If you add the Aeroccino, you will undoubtedly love the Vertuo that much more. The Aeroccino is a gadget that heats milk which can be added to your brew if you desire something a bit more special, like a latte. The Aeroccino can even be used to give you that coffeehouse design froth, otherwise known as latte art. The Nespresso Vertuo is truly the full package.
K-Cafe vs Vertuo Showdown
Ease of Use
The Nespresso Vertuo works with the touch of a single button. With minimal noise and vibration, the Vertuo creates its own foam. Using its unique capsules that are air-tight, you are guaranteed an authentic and strong brew without any added work.
The Keurig K-Café is also pretty easy to use even though it comes with several features. With clear labels on the buttons, all you need to do is hit a button, and your coffee will be ready in no time. The main issue is the varied options that are available with the K-Cups. It can be a real head-scratcher to pick which one to go with and how much water to use.
Winner: Nespresso Vertuo
Both the Nespresso Vertuo and the Keurig K-cafe are well designed, compact and efficient. We tested both machines and they are practical and sturdy. While they are both made with plastic, they have a quality feel to them. We felt that the Keurig actually felt more sturdy, but it was also larger and took up more room. Needless to say, the decision was tough.
Both the Vertuo and the K-cafe are amazing, don't get us wrong. However, if control is what you seek, there is only one option for you. While the Vertuo gives you the option to produce a shot of coffee that resembles fine espresso, there isn't much control over the process. For that reason, Keurig has the upper hand.
With the Keurig, you can dictate the strength of the brew and the amount of water to be used. For those that want a strong and authentic coffee taste, there is a special setting on the K-Café that can give you just that. A bonus with the K-Café is that you can even brew your own personal ground coffee with the help of a permanent filter. This gives you great flexibility on the strength of the brew you want.
Winner: Keurig K-Cafe
Quality of Brew
This is perhaps the biggest difference in both models and it can often be the major deciding factor when it comes to making a decision. The Nespresso Vertuo is, without a doubt, the better of the two. Owned by Nescafe, a stalwart in the coffee game, the Nespresso Vertuo outdoes itself and delivers top, rich, and authentic brews of the highest quality.
The premium capsules are the secret that makes such quality brews. Hermetically sealed, the capsules have a unique flavor stuck in them, and the rich taste is unleashed when they are brewed. While Keurig coffee is good, Nespresso coffee is great!
Aside from that, the superior technology that the Nespresso Vertuo uses in brewing lends credence to its rich and authentic taste. The capsules are spun above 7,000RPM, using an exceptional centrifusion extraction technology. This ensures that the hot water and the contents of the capsule blend immaculately to give you that true coffee taste.
Winner: Nespresso Vertuo
Cleaning and Maintenance
With the Nespresso Vertuo, cleaning is not needed. Why? Because it cleans itself. How? The Nespresso Vertuo has a self-cleaning cycle, using a lot of hot water to clean itself. If you are concerned about the water reservoir, you may clean it even though it may not be necessary.
The Nespresso Vertuo is also easy to maintain due to the unique nature of its espresso and coffee capsules. The Nespresso pods are of high quality and do not leak. All you need to do is just pick the capsule and put them in, leaving no stains around the capsule area.
The Keurig K-café is also quite easy to clean, as it's parts can be easily detached from the main unit. All you need to do is to remove the components, place them in the dishwasher, use a cloth to clean the main unit, and you are all done.
Maintaining the K-Café is minimal as the K-Cup pods are handy; just pop it in and then out. There is no need to worry about spillage as there is a drip tray on the bottom to catch any accidental spills that can be easily cleaned.
Winner: Nespresso Vertuo
Cost Per Cup
One of the most important factors when buying a new coffee making unit is the cost. No, not the cost of the machine, but the cost per cup. The cost involved includes the average lifespan of the machine and the cost of the coffee pods or coffee. Since both of these machines have roughly the same reported lifespan, we will focus on the cost of the pods.
To put in simply, the coffee pods cost considerably less with the Keurig K Cups than the Nespresso capsules, which makes it an easy decision. Of course, you get a weaker taste of coffee with the coffee pods, but they are still the cheaper option if that is all that matters to you.
Winner: Keurig K-Cafe
For purposes of comparison, we will use a regular cup of coffee as a benchmark here. One cup of Joe, purchased from a coffee shop, contains roughly 120 milligrams of caffeine (per 8 ounces). Now for a single K Cup, you will typically have between 100 and 120 milligrams of caffeine.
On the other hand, the Vertuo coffee maker has about 165 milligrams of caffeine in a single capsule. The caffeine content in the K Cups remains mostly the same across all flavors, but with the Nespresso capsules, you will have varying contents of caffeine, ranging from 70 milligrams to 180 milligrams. For that reason, it is difficult to say whether or not Nespresso has the upper hand.
With coffee equipment getting more and more innovative these days, it is not only difficult to stay on top of the latest trends, but it is also difficult to innovate further. With so many amazing products, how does one compete?
While Keurig K Cups were once a revolutionary creation, allowing coffee drinkers to quickly brew a single cup of coffee on the go, it's innovation has ended just as quickly as it began. On the other hand, the Vertuo continues to innovate. For starters, the fact that this little machine has made expensive espresso machines nearly obsolete, is mind boggling.
An amazing fact about the Nespresso capsules is that each capsule comes with a unique barcode that enables the machine to brew that particular capsule to its maximum flavor, automatically. All you need to do is to pick a capsule, and within seconds you have an authentic brew in your hands. Now, add the Aeroccino froth tool, and there is absolutely no beating the Nespresso Vertuo.
Another thing to note is that Nespresso capsules are recyclable, while the K Cups need to be detached and separate the plastic from the organic and the aluminum. If you are considering going green, this could be another thing to consider.
Winner: Nespresso Vertuo
This one took some digging to find which was the better option. Naturally, we were going to mention Keurig as the better option since they have been around for longer and most likely have better workflows in place for handling customers. However, since Keurig is the more dominant brand, keeping track of all of the customer queries can be difficult.
While Keurig does offer exceptional support, we have seen that some customers fall through the cracks, and unfortunate occurrence of conglomerate brands. Since Nespresso has a smaller demand, with the capabilities and manpower of Nestle to back it up, their customer service is the clear winner.
Winner: Nespresso Vertuo
Verdict: Nespresso Ali (5 wins, 2 losses, 2 ties)
Finally, a verdict for the age old Nespresso vs Keurig coffee maker debate. Both the Nespresso Vertuo and the Keurig K-Café have proven to be great at what they do; brewing coffee. But there is a clear winner. The Nespresso Vertuo comes out on top and is the obvious choice; no debate there. For our boxing fans, the Nespresso is equivalent to Muhammed Ali.
The Nespresso Vertuo coffee maker is a great product that delivers high quality coffee beverages with real coffeehouse style, real barista style froth, and uncompromising taste. If you love coffee in its pure richness and taste, the Nespresso Vertuo is the coffee making machine for you.
The capsules for Nespresso may be more expensive, but you should consider the quality of the brew and the fact that they are recyclable and settle for nothing less. If you are a single serve coffee drinker, looking to ditch the Keurig, we highly recommend looking into one of these Nespresso machines.