If you’re looking for your new favourite brew, our roundup of the best coffee pods is here to help. Finding a coffee blend that suits your personal tastes is a total game-changer. Like your favourite tipple, coffee is an incredibly personal thing and with such an array of beans, roasts and flavours to choose from, it’s likely you’re yet to find your ideal match.
There’s an overwhelming choice of coffee pods and capsules available – we’ve seen everything from caramel flavoured capsules to pods that claim to make your coffee taste like apple pie. So if you’re struggling to decide on the best coffee pods, then you’ve come to the right place. Below, you’ll find our buying guide that should answer all of your pod-related questions, as well as a selection of our favourites for a variety of machines.
Top 10 Best Coffee Pods in the UK
We’ve done the research to determine the best coffee pods available in the UK, so have a read and take your pick from top brands like Nespresso, Nescafé Dolce Gusto, Lavazza, and Tassimo to find your match!
1. Illy Classico Medium Roast
Illy was the brand that pioneered the widely-adopted Easy Serving Espresso standard way back in 1974 – and it’s still going strong today. These ingenious little paper packages cram all the flavour of Illy’s classic Italian roast coffee blend into a handy little 44mm ESE pod, and each is individually foil-wrapped for freshness. If you’re looking for a basic, flavourful espresso without all the faff of grinding beans, tamping your grounds and cleaning it all out afterwards, then the Illy Classico ESE pods are a godsend.
2. TassimoL’ Or. XL Classique
For a rich, aromatic coffee, these pods are perfect – and, they’re tailored to supply enough for an extra-large cup! This dark, nutty black coffee is ideal if you prefer stronger, intense blends. While you can add milk for a creamier flavour, this roast is in its prime when served straight from the machine, untouched – lightly sweet and perfectly bitter.
Although the XL size is great value for money, this may be too much coffee for some people who would prefer a smaller cup of coffee. You’ll also be glad to hear that you can recycle them, too! The Tassimo recycling program operates through over 130 TerraCycle drop-off locations across the UK.
3. Kenco Lungo N.08 Intense
A cofficionado knows exactly what their perfect cup of coffee tastes like and our cofficionados here at Kenco do not settle for anything less than delicious. That is why our cofficionados created aluminium capsules designed to fit your Nespresso® coffee machine. For coffee with intense aroma and a delicate crema layer. Our Lungo No. 8 combines the finest characteristics of high-quality Arabica and Robusta beans, enhanced by a deep-roasting process. For a Lungo blend with an intense, bold aftertaste.
4. Blue Goose Single Origin Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee
From Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee, this Yirgacheffe coffee is a treat to savour as a ristretto or espresso thanks to its bright, sweet aromas and flavours. Blue Goose Coffee capsules are fully eco-friendly, and unlike other capsules are completely free from aluminium or plastic.
Containing ethically-sourced and speciality-grade coffee, these pods are suitable for traditional ‘drop through’ Nespresso® machines and contain at least 10% more coffee than Nespresso capsules! Instructions for creating the perfect coffee are included on the plastic-free, sustainably sourced box.
5. Nescafé Dolce Gusto Starbucks Blonde Espresso Roast
Do you love coffee and would like to enjoy it at home? Try the Starbucks by Dolce Gusto Blonde Espresso Roast, 3-Pack capsules and create coffee you are really going to enjoy. The taste of espresso is ideal for people who need to have their morning coffee fast and don’t want to waste any time. 100% arabica coffee beans ensure your coffee drinking experience will be truly delightful.
6. Lavazza Nespresso Compatible Coffee Capsules
Lavazza is an Italian company that is famous worldwide for its Arabica-Robusta espresso blends. This should come as no surprise given their base in espresso’s homeland. Italians are the undisputed masters of the espresso blend. Lavazza’s global reach allows them to source the best coffee for Nespresso compatible capsules.
For a wide-ranging taste of Italy, we recommend this sampler pack with five different varieties. With the WIDEST VARIETY OFFLAVORS and intensities on this list, it’s great if you’re new to Nespresso and not quite sure what you like. Each capsule’s coffee is blended and roasted in Italy using a special method unique to Lavazza that maximizes aroma.
7. L’OR Espresso Lungo Profondo Intensity 8
8. Starbucks Nespresso Variety Pack
They are the high street coffee chain we all know and love, but having that luxury in your home will come in handy when you want to save some cash or have a day at home. This is a variety pack, but you can also buy large servings in variations such as House Blend or Dark Espresso. The variety will help you to narrow down your favourites, or simply give you a different taste at different times of the day.Buy Now on Amazon
9. Pact Coffee Nespresso
One of the biggest names in subscription coffee, Pact offers a variety of brew methods, including the aluminium pod. Packaging is completely plastic-free, but you’ll need to rinse, stack and squeeze each pod before popping into your recycling bin.
Outside of the actual material used, Pact is conscious of its eco-credentials along the whole supply chain.That’s why it pays its farmers above the Fairtrade price, plant trees to take CO2 out of the atmosphere and it has invested in water filtration systems to ensure that all the water used on its farms is recycled. We’d recommend the letterbox-friendly mixed box which contains four different flavours from light to dark roasts made with beans from Brazil, Colombia, Rwanda and Honduras.Buy Now on Amazon
10. RECAPS Reusable Capsules
Recaps and Sealpods are essentially the same contraptions, but Recaps pods win out because they come with a tamper in addition to the pods, and cost nearly $20 less than Sealpods. The fitted tamper is a huge help, especially when dealing with such tiny capsules, and made our experience filling them far less painstaking.
With that said, filling these pods is a chore. It gets easier the more you do it, but it is something you might accomplish better by sitting down. It’s also tricky to learn the optimal size for grounds and tamping to produce a good shot in any given machine. It will take a while to dial these things in, but you should, with a little practice, get a much better shot than with the pre-filled Nespresso and third-party pods.
How to choose the best coffee pods
Now we take a look at a couple of tips that will hopefully make the process of choosing a little bit easier.
1. The Type of Roast Counts
The type of roast you go with will have a big effect on your drinking experience. Generally speaking, darker roasts are more full-bodied and rich, but they can have a bitter aftertaste. Light roasts are a little smoother, but they can also be somewhat bland.The medium roast is the happy middle ground. Good medium-roast coffee is going to be smooth and flavorful.
2. There Are Endless Flavors
Of the ten coffees listed above, there were many different types of flavors, but in the wide world of java, there are even more.We looked at coffees that taste like cinnamon rolls, and even one that tastes like German chocolate cake. If you want to experiment, the sky is pretty much the limit. Keurig sells dozens of different flavored coffees. It’s never a bad idea to stay stocked up on a few different ones in case you have company over.
3. Quantity Is Important
If you know that you love one particular K-cup, it’s a good idea to buy in bulk. Not only will this ensure that you are always well-stocked, but it also helps you lock in a better rate for your purchase. For example, if you buy a sixty-count package, it will usually cost less than buying five twelve-counts.
4. Beware of Exploding Cups
For whatever reason, some coffees are consistently packaged poorly. No matter where you buy from, you’re likely to get the occasional dud. This is especially true when you buy online and your coffee goes through the wear and tear of shipment.However, if you ever find that many or even most of the cups you get from a certain manufacturer tear or explode, it may be time to buy from someone else. Buyers often complain that customer service isn’t great about replacing defective K-cups, so it’s much simpler to avoid them as much as possible.
So, it’s done for today. Here above I made a list of some of the pods that are not just famous, but also tasty and worth a try (in my opinion). Now you’re ready to fill your baskets with enough coffee pods to last you a lifetime! Which ones will you try first? We’d recommend grabbing your top 3 favourites to add a bit of variety to your daily routine – the more coffee the better!