Keurig Won’t Stop Pumping Water? Simple Fixes

Keurig Mini side view

Keurig brewers have the market cornered on ease and convenience. It’s hard to argue with a coffee maker that doesn’t require any measuring or weighing. And a hot cup of coffee at the touch of a single button? Sign us up! But when something goes wrong, your Keurig’s convenience goes right out the window.

If your Keurig won’t stop pumping water, you need a fix — immediately! Luckily, there are a few simple things to try before you have to call in the experts. Keep reading to learn how to fix your brewer easily and quickly:

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How to Fix a Keurig that Won’t Stop Pumping Water:

1. Unplug the Keurig and let it sit.

unplugged Keurig

Give your Keurig a few minutes off-duty by turning it off and unplugging it. Wait 10 or 15 minutes and then plug it back in. This can help the machine reset and return to normal.

SEE ALSO: How to Reset a Keurig (Fast & Easy)


2. Clean the needle.

clean Keurig needle safety pin

If unplugging your Keurig didn’t do the trick, it’s time to try cleaning the needle. Open the brew head and take a close look at the needle. If you see coffee grounds or other gunk stuck in the point, it’s time for a good cleaning. The easiest way to do this is using Keurig’s brewer maintenance accessory tool — an orange device that fits in the K-Cup holder.

Don’t have the cleaning accessory? Try using a safety pin or thumbtack. Keep in mind that the tip is sharp, so you’ll want to avoid touching it.

RELATED: Our Complete Guide to Keurig Needle Cleaning


3. Descale the brewer.

how to clean descale a Keurig coffee maker

Descaling your Keurig is always a good idea since mineral buildup can wreak havoc on the brewer’s tubes and mechanisms. Pour descaling solution or white vinegar and water into the reservoir and brew until it’s empty. Toss the cleaning mixture and run a few cycles of filtered water to rinse out the chemicals. Your Keurig should now be clean and mineral-free — and hopefully will have stopped pumping water.


4. Turn the machine upside down.

Keurig brew button

If none of the previous methods have worked, it’s time to get a little more creative. This may sound silly, but some Keurig owners swear by this method!

Turn your Keurig off and unplug it. Then remove the water reservoir (if possible) and turn the brewer upside down. Gently tap the bottom and shake the brewer side to side. Then turn it right side up, plug it in, and try brewing a cup.


5. Call in the pros.

If all else fails, you’ll probably want to call in the experts. Contact Keurig’s customer service online or by phone. The company may be able to walk you through troubleshooting steps or ship you a replacement part.

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Conclusion

Keurig troubleshooting doesn’t have to be difficult! There are plenty of simple home fixes that can get your machine back in working order. When your Keurig won’t stop pumping water, you may be tempted to call a repairman right away. No one wants a kitchen floor covered in spilled water. But we’re pretty sure these solutions will do the trick.

More Keurig troubleshooting guides:

Coffee as a COVID Detector? Surprising Discoveries

coffee aroma

Coffee does a lot for us: wakes us up, boosts our moods, and possibly even protects us from cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. But there’s a new coffee benefit in town, and it may surprise you.

The strong, distinctive aroma of coffee has made it a useful tool for detecting the novel coronavirus. COVID-19 has a mysterious symptom, and coffee is (strangely enough) a useful test! Many patients report a loss of sense of smell and taste — and coffee is the perfect thing to test their senses on.

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Loss of Smell

According to the CDC, losing your sense of smell is one of the major symptoms of COVID-19. Up to 80% of COVID patients experience anosmia — the aptly named loss of smell — and scientists believe that it may be a more useful diagnostic tool than symptoms like fevers and coughs. While those other symptoms could indicate a cold or the flu, anosmia is more particular to this illness. Recent research suggests it’s a very good indicator because it’s so unusual.

The good news for many COVID patients is that most regain their sense of smell. So if you’ve lost yours, an aromatic cup of coffee may still be in your future!

Coffee Cream

What causes that loss of smell?

If you’re wondering why this virus can cause you to lose your sense of smell, you’re certainly not alone! This symptom has been puzzling to doctors and scientists since it was first discovered. With a typical cold or flu, you might lose your sense of smell because of congestion. It’s hard to smell through a very runny nose. But this disease doesn’t typically cause sinus issues.

Originally, doctors and researchers thought it might be the virus going after your brain, but new research points to the nasal epithelium — a layer of cells in your nose that help you identify smells. The virus may be attacking those cells, preventing you from making sense of the odors around you.

black coffee

Why is coffee useful?

Coffee — along with other foods like garlic and chili peppers — has an unusually strong and unique smell. If you’ve ever walked into a room and smelled the coffee from hours before or left a coffee shop reeking of java, you know how powerful this smell is. In essence, if you can’t smell your cup of coffee, you probably can’t smell anything else, either.

RELATED READ: All About Coffee Aroma

Keep in mind that testing your sense of smell is just one diagnostic tool that your doctor might use — and being able to smell isn’t a guarantee of health. If you have questions about your sense of smell, you may want to talk to your doctor.

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The Bottom Line

So what’s the takeaway? Coffee has found a new purpose as a COVID-19 diagnostic test! The distinctive aroma of a freshly brewed cup of coffee can help determine whether or not you have the virus.

So when you’re making your morning cup of coffee, take a moment to savor that pungent aroma. Coffee has always been useful, and this discovery is just the cherry on top. As if we needed more reasons to love this tasty beverage

Other interesting reads:

Can You Use Coffee Grounds Twice?

coffee grounds

If you’re looking to save money and cut down on some non-essential purchases, you might wonder if you can get away with brewing coffee more than once. It’s a reasonable thought but, unfortunately, we don’t recommend it. Once you use coffee grounds, most of the oils and chemicals that were present have already been extracted, and there isn’t much left that you can use to make a tasty cup of coffee.

Even though we don’t recommend using coffee grounds more than once, we do have some fun suggestions for how you can repurpose used coffee grounds around your house. In this article, we explain why we don’t suggest brewing the coffee grounds multiple times and give you some alternative ideas for how you can make the most of your used coffee.

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The extraction process

The reason you shouldn’t brew coffee grounds twice lies in the extraction process. When you bring hot water in contact with ground coffee, it starts to dissolve, and the oils and flavor compounds begin to mix into the water, ultimately producing the flavor we all know and love. Once those compounds have been extracted from the coffee grounds, they’re gone. Using the same coffee grounds again will create a cup of coffee with a completely different set of flavors compared to the original cup — rather than a slightly weaker version of the same cup.

Melitta pour over brewing

Another problem with reusing coffee grounds is over-extraction. Imagine that you finish brewing your cup of coffee and then immediately pour more water through the grounds creating a second cup. This is very similar to simply letting water sit in contact with your coffee grounds for longer, which results in a bitter, astringent taste. If you’ve ever made French press coffee and accidentally let it sit for too long, you probably are familiar with the harsh flavors you get when coffee is over-extracted.

If you immediately reuse coffee grounds, you are effectively making a second cup that will consist only of over-extracted coffee. The result will be extremely bitter and unpleasant. If you decide to try to be clever and let the coffee dry first, you run into a different problem: under-extraction. Symptoms of under-extracted coffee are a sour taste and a thin body. It seems like letting the grounds dry would help the over-extraction problem, but as the coffee dries, it will continue to extract and, once it is completely dry, almost all of the flavor will be gone.

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Other uses of old coffee grounds

We strongly recommend you don’t use coffee grounds more than once to brew coffee, but there are a few things you can do with old coffee grounds to give them new life.

Gardening

Coffee is naturally acidic, and some plants thrive in acidic soil. You can reuse coffee grounds as fertilizer to help cultivate a healthy garden by mixing your usual planting soil with old grounds. If you are into vegetable gardening, tomato plants prefer acidic soil and will benefit from a healthy dose of coffee grounds mixed in their beds. Magnolias are an excellent choice for a decorative flower that loves acidic soil and will also happily take to soil mixed with coffee grounds.

Coffee grounds repel some pesty insects, so a sprinkling of grounds around your garden can stop your plants from being slowly devoured. Snails and slugs, in particular, are averse to coffee so you prevent the damage they cause to some plants. Be careful with this, however, as snails are an important element to a healthy garden.

coffee for roses plants

Coffee scrub

You can repurpose your used coffee grounds into an exfoliating scrub with very little effort. Exfoliating is important if you want your skin to stay healthy and vibrant, and ground coffee has the perfect consistency to use in a scrub. Make sure you use medium to fine ground coffee. If your coffee is coarsely ground, your scrub will be too harsh and abrasive and could do more harm than good.

A simple recipe is to mix used coffee grounds with melted coconut oil, vanilla extract, and brown sugar to create an exfoliating scrub that smells great and keeps your skin shining bright.

coffee scrub

Image credit: Julia Sudnitskaya, Shutterstock

Furniture polish

This might sound a bit crazy, but an olive oil and coffee ground mixture make a great furniture polish in a pinch. We tried it, and while it did make our wood surfaces nice and shiny, we do not recommend it if you have pets. Our fuzzy friend was thoroughly intrigued by the food smells coming from the coffee table, and we ultimately had to clean the olive oil off – multiple times – with all-purpose cleaner before they were convinced we weren’t hiding a pasta dinner under the table.

WORTH READING: 17 Great Uses for Old Coffee Grounds

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Conclusion

Unfortunately, we cannot recommend using coffee grounds to brew more than one cup of coffee. If you immediately reuse the grounds you’ll wind up with a bitter, over-extracted mess, and if you let the grounds dry first, you’ll instead have a sour, disappointing cup.

The good news is that ground coffee is surprisingly versatile, and there are several alternative uses for brewed coffee grounds that can give them a second life and save you money. If you’re an avid gardener, care about skin health, or want your wood tables to shine – and don’t own a dog – there are some great ways you can reuse your coffee grounds.

RELATED READS:


Featured Image: StockSnap, Pixabay

How Big is a Coffee Scoop? What You Need to Know

coffee scoop

There’s nothing more frustrating than an incomplete recipe. If you’re unfamiliar with a particular recipe and don’t have the experience to judge for yourself what’s best, phrases like “a dash” or “cook until done” can be infuriating. Why won’t they just tell me how much to use?

A similar frustration can arise when you’re new to coffee and trying to improve your daily cup by changing how much coffee you use. Oftentimes, coffee recipes indicate that you should use “a scoop” of coffee. The last time we checked, “a scoop” is not a unit of measurement and could mean many things. In this article, we’re going to set the record straight and explain what “a scoop” of coffee actually means and give you some foolproof ways to make sure you’re using the right amount of coffee in your brews.

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What’s the scoop?

You probably have encountered the phrase “a regular coffee scoop” if you’ve ever tried to read coffee recipes online. Without prior knowledge, it’s impossible to know how much coffee a scoop actually is. Some coffee comes with a scoop in the bag, but there’s no guarantee that every bag from every brand will have the same size scoop.

If you’ve been making coffee regularly with one brand’s scoop, an easy way to make things clearer is to measure the size of your scoop with a measuring cup. Most coffee scoops are two tablespoons, but there’s nothing that says they have to be two tablespoons. We’ve found scoops that were one tablespoon, two and a half tablespoons, and even one that was seven grams.

coffee grounds and scoop

Image Credit: MerelyRachel, Flickr

Once you measure the scoop you’ve been using, you have a comparison point if you ever decide to switch brands in the future. We recommend writing down the amount of coffee you used when you find a recipe that tastes best to you. That way, you can duplicate it later without going through the trial-and-error process again.

A better way to measure

Scoops are fine to use, and once you know how big your scoop is, you shouldn’t have much difficulty making delicious coffee regularly. As you get more serious about coffee, you might want to branch out and try different brands of coffee or even purchase whole-bean coffee and grind it yourself at home. When you get to that level, there is a better way to measure coffee that doesn’t use scoops at all.

measure coffee beans kitchen scale

Image: Unsplash

The best way to figure out how much coffee to use is to weigh it using a kitchen scale. Using a scale removes any ambiguity from the procedure and guarantees that you get the exact same amount of coffee every time you brew. Additionally, if you start buying whole bean coffee, different beans have different sizes, which means that one scoop – or even one tablespoon – of one bean won’t be the same amount of coffee as another. If you’re serious about making better coffee, one of the best investments you can make is a kitchen scale.

If you start using a scale to weigh your coffee, you should also weigh the water. Since you would have the scale out anyway, weighing the water with the scale instead of measuring it with a cup actually saves you time.

Scoop of Ground Coffee

Image Credit: Marco Verch Professional Photographer, Flickr

There is another major benefit to weighing the water and beans: scalability. Let’s say you usually use one scoop of coffee and eight ounces of water to brew one cup of coffee. If you have a friend over and want to make two cups, you might be able to double everything easily, but what if you have three people that want coffee? Or five? Suddenly it becomes harder. Estimating a third of a scoop, for example, is difficult and prone to inaccuracy and subpar coffee. If you use a scale instead, you can easily adjust your favorite recipe to suit as many cups as you like.

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Conclusion

Scoops are an ambiguous and outdated way to measure coffee, and your results will improve the sooner you move away from using them. If you prefer to use a scoop, we recommended measuring that scoop at the very least so you can reproduce your coffee even when you don’t have it.

Weighing your coffee with a scale is much easier than using a measuring cup or scoop and becomes more important if you branch out into whole-bean coffee. Using a scale is unambiguous, reproducible, and easily scalable. It will save you time in the long run and also improve the consistency of your coffee.


Featured Image: Vitaliy_Zhuk, Shutterstock

What’s the Best Coffee Country in the World?

Brazil coffee bags

Coffee is more than just a drink; it’s a way of life. One of the most mass-produced products in the world, coffee is a staple in many cultures. It has been both banned and praised throughout history, but it’s one of the most mass-produced crops today. Nearly one billion people drink coffee regularly, whether it’s for the jolt of caffeine or simply for the taste.

Coffee is also incredibly easy to obtain, from large coffee chain shops to diners brewing it daily. Millions of Americans brew it every day, drinking it as part of their morning ritual. The U.S. is arguably the largest importer of coffee, once receiving over one metric ton of coffee in 2016. Simply put, coffee is a necessity in the lives of many.

While many of us drink coffee, we rarely think about where it comes from. Coffee is farmed and exported from many countries, but who produces the best coffee? Although taste is subjective and most countries will claim they have the best, one country stands out as the best coffee country in the world.

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What’s the Best Coffee Country in the World?

Brazilian Coffee_shutterstock_juliannedev

Image Credit By: juliannedev, shutterstock

There are quite a few countries that farm and sell coffee, exporting thousands of pounds of coffee on a daily basis. However, there is one country that is the top exporter of coffee: Brazil. This tropical South American country is the leading exporter of coffee beans, responsible for most of the world’s coffee production.

Brazil also has the perfect environment for growing and harvesting coffee. Most coffee farmers use the dry method, which is the most natural way of processing coffee. Green coffee beans, called cherries, are laid out to dry in the sun, separating the pulp and skin from the coffee bean. Since Brazil has dry and wet seasons perfect for coffee farming and processing, the dry method works perfectly.

Many espresso blends use Brazil-grown beans, often giving a nice body and flavor to otherwise bitter espresso beans. Brazil has many specialty brews and roasts that are highly sought after, some with chocolate and caramel notes. In other words, Brazil has become the top country for coffee production and continues to do so.

History of Coffee in Brazil

Coffee farmers sorting beans

Coffee farmers sorting beans

Coffee is an important part of Brazilian culture, home to hundreds of coffee plantations and farms. Brought to Brazil around the late 1700s, it quickly became a popular resource for farmers. Many believe that coffee was smuggled in by the French Guiana’s governor’s wife, seduced by a Portuguese Colonel.

Once coffee took off as a high-volume crop in Brazil and other South American countries, they had tough competition to face in the market against Asia. Luckily for Brazilian farmers, an aggressive disease ravaged the coffee crops in Asia, and Brazil’s coffee production flourished. To this day, Brazil remains dominant in the coffee production industry.

When coffee was first introduced and farmed in Brazil, European settlers were mostly the ones drinking it. Throughout history, coffee became a part of Brazilian culture and still is today. Coffee farming is multigenerational and an important trade for the country, providing thousands and thousands of pounds of coffee beans each year.

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How Much Coffee Does Brazil Make?

lots of coffee cups

Image: Unsplash

Brazil is the powerhouse of coffee production, and for a good reason- they’ve dominated the global market and produce nearly 30% of the world’s coffee. Although there has been a lot of economic strife for farmers and across the world, Brazil still remains the biggest exporter of coffee beans. This title has been held by Brazil for over 150 years, continuing to fuel billions of coffee drinkers each year.

The demand for coffee is only growing stronger, but economic struggles could change this in the future. Farmers are worried about the value of coffee dropping so low that production is more expensive, yet wholesale buyers are demanding lower costs. Regardless, Brazil still powers through and produces millions of bags of coffee beans to remain the top coffee country in the world.

What Types of Coffee does Brazil Make?

Coffee with beans

Brazil grows and harvests two types of coffee beans: Arabica and Robusta. These two species of coffee beans make up most of the coffee production in Brazil. Out of these two types, Arabica is grown and produced more than Robusta. They’re both quite different from each other, including taste and caffeine levels.

Arabica beans are the most popular of the four coffee species, making up most of the beans in the coffee industry. Arabica beans are smooth with sweet, chocolate-like notes, with around 1.5-1.7% caffeine. They’re used for specialty brews and in most coffee shops since the taste is balanced and easy to drink.

Robusta beans, in contrast, have a bitter and woodsy taste, usually processed for instant coffee or espresso blends. They’re harsher and not as easy to enjoy, but the caffeine level is nearly double of Arabica at around 2.3-2.7% caffeine. Robusta makes up around 30% of Brazil’s coffee production, compared to Arabica at 70%.

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What’s the Best Way to Make Coffee from Brazil?

Coffee beans from Brazil can be made by preference, but there are two methods that stand out the most: the French Press method and the traditional Brazilian method. Coffee makers are okay, but these two methods are for the best possible tasting coffee.

best coffee for French press

For the French Press method, you’ll need a French Press, a kettle to boil water, coffee beans, and a coffee bean grinder. Grind the beans coarsely, as French Press coffee beans shouldn’t be finely ground. Put the ground beans under the plunger. Pour boiling water and let the coffee steep until it’s at your desired strength. Push the plunger down and enjoy.

For the Brazilian method, you’ll need: a saucepan to boil water, a kettle, a brewing filter (called a “sock” in Brazil), a coffee grinder, coffee beans, and sugar. Grind coffee beans to a fine powder. Pour water in saucepan and sugar, bring to a boil. Once sugar is dissolved, remove from heat and add coffee powder. Return to heat and stir, then pour through the filter into the kettle and enjoy.

What Other Countries Produce Coffee?

Coffee Bean Map

While Brazil is the top country for coffee exporting, there are other countries that are close in production. Coffee came from Ethiopia and is still produced there, as well as other African countries like Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, and Tanzania. In South Africa, Brazil competes with Colombia, Guatemala, Venezuela, Ecuador, and Peru for coffee farming. There are Asian and Middle Eastern countries that produce coffee, such as Vietnam, India, and Indonesia. Regardless of the many countries that grow coffee, Brazil has been in the #1 spot for a long time.

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Final Thoughts about Coffee from Brazil

Coffee has had a complicated history, from being smuggled into countries to being outright banned in others. These magic beans have stood strong against time, regardless of what’s happening in the world. Through every economic fall and countless wars, Brazil has faced the challenge and remains the best coffee country in the world.

Coffee in Brazil is part of the culture and a symbol of hard work, reshaping Brazil’s farming industry. The governor’s wife and the promiscuous Colonel changed history with just a handful of beans, creating a cultural phenomenon that has stood the test of time. Without Brazil’s dominating coffee production, the industry — and that hot cup of Joe in your hands — wouldn’t be where it is today.


Featured Image Credit: Unsplash

Mazagran: How to Make Lemon Coffee

mazagran lemon coffee recipe

What could be better than a good old fashioned cup of coffee? Wait until you try mazagran, a European coffee drink made with lemon and sugar. It’s sometimes called the original iced coffee — and you may never go back to your previous drinks!

We’ll show you what mazagran is and how to make it at home. Plus, keep reading to find brewing tips and tricks!

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What is Mazagran?

citric acid lemons

Mazagran is a cold espresso drink that originally comes from Algeria, though it’s now much more popular in Portugal. It’s essentially coffee lemonade, combining citrusy acidity with the bold flavor of espresso. The lemon juice was originally added to improve the flavor of low-end coffee beans. But don’t hesitate to use your pricier beans — this tasty drink won’t ruin their flavor.

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How to Make Mazagran:

Ingredients
  • Fresh espresso or strong coffee
  • Lemon
  • White sugar or honey
  • Ice
Equipment
  • Espresso or coffee maker
  • Spoon
  • Tall glass
  • Lemon squeezer (optional)

1. Pour ice into a tall glass.

coffee ice cubes in a glass

Fill the glass with ice — or, for a stronger drink, use coffee ice cubes.


2. Pull a shot of espresso or brew a strong cup of coffee.

Wacaco Minipresso espresso shot

Using your preferred espresso maker, pull a shot. If you prefer, you can use strong coffee instead, though you may want to adjust the ratios. We used the Wacaco Minipresso, an affordable portable espresso maker, for this guide.


3. Add a sweetener.

honey coffee

Mix white sugar, honey, or vanilla extract into the hot coffee. Then let the mixture cool for a few minutes.


4. Add the espresso to the glass.

iced coffee espresso

Pour the espresso mixture on top of the ice.


5. Squeeze in fresh lemon juice.

mazagran coffee lemonade

Depending on how much you like sour flavors, you may want to add more or less lemon juice. We recommend squeezing in half a lemon (about 1 tablespoon of juice). Then stir, taste, and adjust if needed!


6. Garnish with a lemon slice and enjoy!

If you’d like, add a slice of lemon as a garnish. Now you’re ready to enjoy your iced lemon coffee!

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What variations can you make?

Want to adjust this drink to your tastes? Here are some suggestions to personalize your drink or take it over the top:

Sour or Sweet?

lemon lime coffee drink

Image credit: Unsplash

If you’re a big fan of sour drinks, you may want to add more lemon juice and less sugar to your mazagran. Try the above recipe and see how you like it. You can always squeeze in another lemon or add a spoonful of honey at the end. And if you want to experiment a little, why not try substituting a lime? You may enjoy the sour twist!

Skip the Lemon

iced latte

Prefer a drink that’s closer to the original Algerian recipe? Skip the lemon and make a simple iced espresso. You can pull a shot of espresso directly over ice, or mix it with sugar and then add a few ice cubes.

Espresso or Coffee?

Café Bustelo espresso in drip coffee maker

What will change if you substitute brewed coffee for espresso? You can expect a difference in flavor — espresso is richer and more complex — and the drink will be less strongly flavored overall. We recommend brewing your coffee as strong as possible to get the best flavor.

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The Bottom Line

We hope you enjoy this easy lemon coffee recipe! It’s simple to make and surprisingly delicious. A squeeze of lemon adds bright acidity to the rich flavor of espresso — and enjoying the whole thing over ice is very refreshing. Why not try a tasty cup of iced mazagran today?

Looking for more coffee recipes?


Featured image: Unsplash

How Much Coffee Is In a K Cup?

how much coffee is in a k cup

K-Cups are one of the easiest ways to make coffee. Turn on your Keurig, pop in a pod, add water, and you’ve got a hot cup of delicious coffee! But have you ever been curious about the contents of these convenient pods?

You may be wondering how much caffeine you’ll find in a K-Cup, or whether you’re getting your money’s worth of coffee. And what’s really inside these mysterious coffee pods? We’re taking a close look at K-Cups to answer all of your burning questions.

The Short Answer
There are 9-12 grams (0.3-0.4 ounces) of finely ground coffee in the average K-Cup.

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What’s inside a K-Cup?

A K-Cup is more than the coffee inside it. It also has a plastic shell, foil lid, and paper filter. We took apart K-Cups from three brands to get a better look at the contents — so you don’t have to waste your precious coffee! Here’s what we found:

Regular K-Cups

To understand what’s inside regular K-Cups, we compared two brands: the Keurig Starbucks Sumatra blend and the Rude Awakening blend.

inside K-Cups

Inside a Rude Awakening K-Cup (left) and a Starbucks Sumatra K-Cup (right).

When we peeled back the foil lid of a Keurig-brand Starbucks Sumatra K-Cup, we found finely ground coffee, a glued-on paper filter something like a cupcake liner, and a small plastic filter in the bottom.

Inside the Rude Awakening K-Cup, we found finely ground coffee and a glued-on paper filter made of a slightly different material.

Both had about the same amount of ground coffee — and the biggest difference was the plastic filter found only in the Keurig K-Cup.

Compostable Glorybrew K-Cup

Glorybrew compostable K-Cup inside

As for the compostable Glorybrew K-Cup, there’s not much mystery. You can see the major elements from the outside, which is because it’s compostable. The lid is made of paper, attached to a bio-based ring. The grounds are held in by a paper filter — and there’s no cup to speak of.

In all three brands, we were amazed at the amount of coffee that came out. The vacuum-sealing process packs a lot of coffee into these small cups. It’s something like tamping for espresso — which makes sense when you think about the Keurig brewing process.

How much does a K-Cup weigh?

K-Cup weight

The average K-Cup weighs between 12 and 16 grams or 0.4 to 0.6 ounces. The packaging accounts for only about 3 grams (0.1 ounces) of that weight. If you opt for a lightweight brand like GloryBrew, that amount is even smaller — only a gram or two.

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How much coffee is in a K-Cup?

Most of the K-Cup’s weight comes from the coffee grounds, which is great news in terms of value. Who wants to spend a lot of money on the packaging that heads straight for the trash or recycling bin?

ground coffee in a K-Cup

The average K-Cup has 9 to 12 grams (0.3 to 0.4 ounces) of ground coffee. The actual amount inside your K-Cups depends on which brand you buy.

You’ll also find slightly more coffee in dark roast K-Cups — so if you want the most bang for your buck, you may want to stick to robust blends. And keep in mind that if you like your coffee exceptionally strong, you may end up using more than one K-Cup to make a single cup of coffee.

How much caffeine is in a K-Cup?

Keurig Mini K-Cups Starbucks

Okay, so that’s how much coffee is in a K-Cup, but what about the good stuff, caffeine? It depends on which type of K-Cup you buy, but the average K-Cup contains 75 to 150 milligrams of caffeine. A decaf K-Cup will have negligible amounts of caffeine, while an extra-strong pod could have quite a bit more.

How much coffee should you put in the reusable Keurig My Cup?

The My Cup allows you to use any ground coffee you choose — but you need to know how much to add. The good news? This is easy to figure out, and you don’t even need to measure! Just fill your My Cup to the MAX line.

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The Bottom Line

So how much coffee is there in a K-Cup? More than you might think! Ground coffee makes up most of the weight of a K-Cup. Along with around 10 grams of coffee, you’ll find a foil lid, a paper filter, and maybe a plastic filter inside your K-Cups.

Now you know how much coffee is inside a K-Cup — and what else is in there, too! We hope this guide helps you understand what you’re buying and drinking. K-Cup coffee can be a tasty and affordable option, and it certainly pays to be informed.

RELATED READS:

Does Coffee Make You Smarter?

coffee and book

Coffee gets us going in the morning, perks us up in the afternoon, and fuels our busy lives, but did you know that it also can make you smarter? Regular coffee consumption – caffeine consumption more specifically – has many well-documented benefits for your brain that make it one of the rare things that are both good for you and delicious. Drinking another cup of coffee with your breakfast won’t make you the next Einstein but will provide tangible improvements to intelligence and long-term brain health.

In this article, we discuss everything you need to know about your brain’s relationship with coffee and explain why drinking coffee is one of the better habits you can have – as if you needed another reason to love coffee. So, go brew another cup and let’s get started.

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Coffee’s Short Term Effects

Anyone who drinks coffee is familiar with the energy boost they get from drinking coffee. When you stay up late studying or have to wake up early for work, a cup of coffee can help clear the cobwebs and get you functioning normally on a smaller than usual amount of sleep. But have you ever wondered why that is? After all, you’re not any more well-rested after you have coffee, so why does it feel like you are?

The answer, of course, is caffeine. Because coffee is so widely consumed, caffeine is one of the most studied psychoactive substances in the world, and therefore the effects of caffeine on humans are well-understood. Caffeine interacts with a neurotransmitter in your brain called adenosine, which regulates your brain’s activity and plays an important role in sleep. When you consume caffeine, it blocks adenosine, which leads to an increase in brain activity that literally means your brain can work harder than it otherwise would.

latte art creativity

Image Credit: I love coffee, Shutterstock

Many studies – like this one – show that drinking one to four standard cups of coffee per day gives you enough caffeine to provide a measurable improvement to your memory, cognitive function, ability to focus. These, and a host of other short-lived but dramatic factors, all add up to make a person smarter, albeit temporarily.

An interesting study of performance-enhancing drugs in chess competition found that caffeine consumption improved results nearly as much as prescription medicines designed to treat ADHD by increasing a person’s ability to focus. The effects were significant enough to consider whether caffeine should be a controlled substance banned from use in mental competitions like chess tournaments.

woman drinking coffee

Image Credit: Ketut Subiyanto, Pexels

While these are some impressive results that make a strong case for coffee making you smarter, thus far, the effects on intelligence are transient. Is it actually fair to claim that coffee makes you smarter when the benefits fade as the caffeine concentration in your blood decreases?

It is an interesting question without an obvious answer, but we think that answer is yes. The improvements to cognitive function that coffee-drinkers enjoy are real effects that have stood up to intense scientific scrutiny. Being short-lived doesn’t cheapen the fact that drinking coffee enhances mental performance.


Coffee’s Long-Term Effects

So far, we’ve only discussed short term boosts to intelligence that vanish once your body has processed the caffeine. The good news is regular coffee drinkers also have improved brain health throughout their lives. These benefits aren’t specifically intelligence-related, but overall brain health is important and closely related enough to warrant a quick discussion.

Image Credit: fotografierende, Pixabay

Studies have shown that regular caffeine consumption in doses typically found in one to four cups of coffee has a neuroprotective effect that reduces a person’s chance of developing neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and dementia.

Caffeine’s effect on long-term memory is less clear than its effect on short-term memory. Still, a few studies indicate that long-term memory may be improved by caffeine consumption during and after the learning process.

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Conclusion

Coffee is one of the few habits that feels like a guilty pleasure but, in reality, has virtually no drawbacks. Drinking coffee regularly in moderation comes with many benefits to cognitive function and brain health, with relatively few negative side effects to worry about.

It might seem too good to be true, but coffee contains enough caffeine to have a measurable positive effect on intelligence and also provide protection against some of the nastiest and most common degenerative brain diseases. If the enticing aroma and delicious taste aren’t enough reasons to love coffee, the brain-boosting effects of caffeine certainly are.

SEE ALSO: Why Doesn’t Caffeine Affect Some People?


Featured Image: Engin_Akyurt, Pixabay

Easy Melitta Pour Over Instructions

melitta pour over instructions coffee

The Melitta pour-over is a classic coffee maker that’s very easy to use. But that doesn’t mean you don’t need any brewing tips! A few straightforward instructions will help you create delicious coffee from the moment you open the Melitta box.

Here are our expert Melitta pour-over instructions, including pictures and step-by-step guides. We’ve also included information about the best coffee grind, coffee to water ratio, and water temperature so you can brew with confidence. Now let’s get started!

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How to Use a Melitta Pour Over:

Ingredients
Equipment

1. Grind your coffee beans.

coffee grinder scoop and filters

For a Melitta pour-over, you’ll want a medium to medium-fine grind size. Start with a coffee-to-water ratio of 1:17 or 0.7 ounces (1.4 tablespoons) of coffee for a 12-ounce cup.


2. Boil water.

Hario Tetsu-Kasuya Mini Drip kettle

We used the Hario Tetsu-Kasuya Mini Drip kettle.

Bring your filtered water to a boil. The ideal water temperature is between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit — but if you don’t have a thermometer, don’t worry! You can just let the kettle sit for 20 seconds after it reaches boiling point.

For this guide, we boiled water and then transferred it to the Hario Tetsu-Kasuya Mini Drip kettle for pouring. Read our comparison of Hario kettles (specifically designed for pour-overs)!


3. Put the pour-over on a coffee cup.

Melitta pour over set up

Add a #4 paper filter. If you want to avoid any papery taste, rinse it with a little water.


4. Pour in the coffee grounds.

Melitta pour over with coffee grounds

Carefully add the coffee grounds to the filter, tapping the sides to even the level.


5. Let the coffee bloom.

coffee bloom Melitta pour over

Pour a small amount of water into the center of the grounds. Then work in circles toward the outside, making sure you dampen all of the grounds. Wait about 30 seconds for your coffee to bloom.


6. Continue pouring water until your cup is fully brewed.

Melitta pour over brewing

Keep up the circular pouring motion, starting in the center and moving outwards. If your Melitta and cup are opaque, you may want to lift the brewer occasionally to check that you’re not over-filling the cup. You can also opt for a Melitta pour-over like the one we’re using, which has a window.

Another option? Use a kitchen scale to measure a more precise cup.


7. Take the pour-over off and discard the filter.

Melitta brewed coffee

Remove the Melitta brewer from the cup. You can throw away or compost the filter and coffee grounds. That’s it! Your delicious cup of pour-over coffee is ready to drink.

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Melitta Brewing Tips

Now that you know the basics, you may be ready to start brewing — or you may be looking for a little more information. If so, keep reading! Here’s everything you need to know about brewing with a Melitta.

Where does the Melitta brewer come from?

Melitta pour over brewer

The namesake of the Melitta brewer, a German entrepreneur called Melitta Bentz, wanted to create a cleaner cup of coffee. To do that, she made holes in a brass pot and put a piece of paper inside it. Coffee brewed through her invention came out clear, rich, and flavorful — so she founded a coffee company.

The pour-over brewer and paper filter were born! Though the designs and products have modernized, the Melitta company remains a family coffee business to this day.


What kind of filters does the Melitta pour-over use?

brown vs white coffee filters

To use a Melitta pour-over, you’ll need a size two or four cone-shaped paper filter. The Melitta company makes and sells these filters, and you can also find generic and other brand options.

RELATED READ: Brown vs White Paper Filters: What’s the Difference?


What’s the best coffee to water ratio for a Melitta?

pour over coffee to water ratio grinding beans

Start with a 1:17 coffee to water ratio. That’s one part coffee to 17 parts water or about 0.7 ounces of coffee for a 12-ounce cup. Making a different amount of coffee? Let our handy coffee to water ratio calculator do the math!

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The Bottom Line

There you have it: easy Melitta pour-over instructions to help you brew a tasty cup of coffee. You’ll be impressed with the delicious coffee you can make with such a simple and inexpensive brewer! Now get out there and enjoy your expert coffee brewing skills. Your next cup of clear, flavorful coffee awaits.

Looking for more brewing guides?

Coffee Makes Things Sweeter (According to Science)

healthier sugar alternatives for coffee

Coffee can help you focus, boost your mood, and even protect you from diseases like Alzheimer’s and cancer. But new research shows that it can do even more: alter your sensory perception!

A new study shows that coffee’s effects don’t end when you finish your cup: drinking coffee can change how sweet or bitter something else tastes. But does it matter if you’re drinking regular or decaf, and does the distinctive aroma of coffee change your sense of smell? Scroll down to find out!

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The Study

How was the study set up and what were its goals? Researchers from Denmark’s Aarhus University wanted to see if drinking coffee changed our sensory perceptions. To test this, they recorded the participants’ sense of taste and smell before and after drinking coffee.

black coffee

The study used Arpeggio capsules from Nespresso — an intense, popular South and Central American Arabica blend — to maintain consistency and strong flavor. It also used regular and decaf versions to test for the effect of caffeine on your tastebuds.

To test the senses, researchers gave their test subjects droplets of water calibrated to be bitter, sweet, salty, or sour. They recorded how many droplets each subject needed to perceive that flavor, before and after drinking a cup of coffee.


The Results

So what were the results? The researchers quickly saw that drinking coffee didn’t affect the sense of smell — participants perceived aromas in the same way before and after drinking coffee. But it did affect another sense: taste.

coffee aroma

Compared to the baseline pre-coffee perception, the study’s participants were a lot less sensitive to bitterness — and a lot more sensitive to sweetness. The bitterness of the coffee meant that other bitter flavors were harder to taste, whereas sugar was much more obvious. This suggests that coffee primes your tastebuds for bitter flavors, which explains why the sugar would be such an unexpected flavor.

And the difference between regular and decaf coffee? Negligible — meaning that you can switch to decaf and still enjoy that chocolate croissant. Caffeine doesn’t seem to affect your tastebuds — who knew?

coffee sugar

Essentially, researchers found that coffee makes you more sensitive to sweet flavors and less sensitive to bitter ones. Interestingly, the effect is the same whether you drink regular or decaf. And your sense of smell remains unchanged.

Want to know more? You can read the full study (complete with all the scientific details) here.

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Conclusion

So what’s the takeaway? Drinking coffee makes other things taste sweeter and less bitter. Maybe that’s why so many of us enjoy cinnamon toast or a glazed donut with our cups of joe. But despite that powerful fresh coffee aroma, it doesn’t affect your sense of smell at all. Interesting, right?

Now it’s your turn! Why not conduct this experiment at home? Try a cookie (like Match Made’s tasty cookie and coffee pairing) before and after your morning cup of coffee. Does it taste sweeter after that first caffeinated sip? We’re betting it does!

More interesting coffee studies:

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