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Are There Compostable Coffee Pods for Keurig & Nespresso?

compostable coffee pods and a cup of coffee

When it comes to convenient coffee and espresso, Keurig and Nespresso are the way to go. These handy machines allow you to have your preferred coffee beverage on your time and without tons of clean-up. However, when it comes to the little plastic coffee pods used in these one-cup machines, there can be waste issues. As we know, plastic isn’t the easiest thing to recycle and it definitely doesn’t decompose on its own. But, is there another answer out there to help the planet and still use our convenient one-cup coffee makers? The answer to this question is yes, there is.

Thanks to the determination of K-cup and Nespresso pod makers, compostable coffee pods are now available. These pods are better for the environment and work just as well in your makers as the plastic ones we’re used to. Let’s learn a little bit more about compostable coffee pods and how we can all benefit from them.

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What Is Composting?

According to the EPA, compost is any organic material that can be added to the soil to help replenish it or help plants grow. Composting is when you take the organic materials around your home such as food waste, coffee grounds, and even compostable coffee pods, and make a compost pile for use in your gardens and around your home’s grounds. This method keeps waste out of our landfills which are constantly in danger of overfilling.

When it comes to composting, there are two ways to do this at home. You can either make yourself an outside composting pile or an indoor composting area. Why is it okay to have one of these compost piles in the house? That’s thanks to the organic materials used in the process. If done properly, a compost pile shouldn’t smell of waste. How does this work? The compost promotes the production of bacteria and fungi that breaks down the organic materials and makes them nutrient-rich.

coffee grounds compost
Image Credit: Neslihan Gunaydin, Unsplash

The Benefits of Composting

There are many reasons people are turning to composting and using compostable materials. Let’s take a look at these benefits below.

Benefits the Soil

Normally, people use their compost to help enrich the soil and help keep disease and pests away from their plants. This is ideal for people who have backyard gardens or simply love growing beautiful flowers and plants in their yard.

Fewer Chemicals

The use of chemicals on plants can be dangerous. Certain pesticides and fertilizers are harmful to the humans around them, animals, and even the soil. When using compost as fertilizer and even as a way to battle pests, you are keeping harmful chemicals out of the equation.

Reducing the Carbon Footprint

Possibly the biggest benefit of composting is reducing your carbon footprint on the world. If you compost certain wastes around your home, you are avoiding the act of sending these materials to landfills. Fewer materials in landfills lowers methane emissions and helps the planet overall.

woman holding a box of used coffee ground to use as compost in her garden
Image Credit: DGLimages, Shutterstock

Compostable Coffee Pods

When searching for compostable coffee pods for Keurig or Nespresso, you’ll find many different labels. Recyclable, biodegradable, and even compostable are often on the side of your K-pod packages. While any of these K-pods would be better than simply tossing plastic ones into the garbage, there is a big difference when it comes to compostable coffee pods. These pods can break down and be part of the soil within 8 weeks. For this reason, many people prefer to use this type of pod.

Most compostable coffee pods are made up of coffee, of course, a paper lid, a paper or cornstarch-made filter, and plant-based materials for the rings. In some instances, you may find the rings are also made of compostable paper or coffee husks. All these materials are ideal for use in a compost pile, whether it’s in your backyard or your kitchen. There is no reason at all to send these types of K-cups or Nespresso pods to the landfills that so many other pods are calling home for years to come.

Finding the Best Compostable Coffee Pods

When you’re looking for the best compostable coffee pods out there, a bit of research, as well as trial-and-error, may be required. As we mentioned above, biodegradable and recyclable are different. These types of pods are better for the planet but they are not completely compostable due to them needing longer to break down.

If you want K-cups and Nespresso pods you can add to your compost piles, then looking for compostable labeling is a must. When you find compostable coffee pods, which one is best for you depends on your coffee preferences.

cup of compostable coffee pods
Image Credit: Irra, Shutterstock

Is the Coffee or the Process Different?

If you’re considering changing over to compostable coffee pods, you may be curious about the taste. Luckily, for all coffee lovers, the taste is no different. Your coffee and espressos will still taste just as great, you’ll simply be leaving less waste lying around for future generations.

When it comes to using compostable pods in your machines, you’ll be pleased to know there is no difference. These compostable materials do not change the flow of coffee through your Keurig or Nespresso machine. In fact, you may find that the flow is better due to the thinness of the package and the use of plant and coffee-based materials.

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Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are several compostable coffee pods for Keurig and Nespresso machines on the market for those who practice composting at home. These pods offer great taste, easy use, and of course, a reduced carbon footprint for coffee lovers. If you want to continue enjoying the convenience of single-serve coffee and help the planet at the same time, these compostable cups are a perfect addition to your home.


Featured Image Credit: Ilina Yuliia, Shutterstock

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Melissa Gunter

Melissa has been a fan of coffee since the first sip she stole from her Granny's cup when she was just a girl. Now, she spends each morning writing with a hot cup of coffee at her side. With a love of sweet and creamy bliss, Melissa and her daughter, Amber, stop by and try out every local coffee shop they see. Neither are afraid to try something new and have a long list of favorite coffee beverages they simply can't do without. When she's not freelance writing about her 2 passions, coffee, and pets, Melissa spends her time with her husband, 2 kids, and 5 fur babies. She also loves diving into the fiction world under her pen name, Rena Marin. If she isn't at the laptop or with the family, Melissa is out enjoying the mountains of East Tennessee she calls home.

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