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Can You Open K-Cups & Use Them in Regular Coffee Makers? Expert Tips

Victor Allens K-Cup Coffee

K-Cups hit the coffee scene a few years ago and never stopped running. These little cups are packed with coffee flavor and are simple to use. They are the best alternative to a standard coffee maker and have become extremely popular for those who are looking for just one cup of coffee or want an easy way to drink their coffee on the go.

However, what happens when you wake up one morning to find your Keurig machine has given up the ghost? Can you open a K-Cup and use the contents in a regular coffee machine? After all, we know better than most how impossible it is to get going in the morning without your coffee.

In short, yes, it is possible to open K-Cups and use them in a regular coffee maker. However, remember you can’t use the actual K-Cups themselves in your regular coffee maker, just the contents. In this article, we’ll talk about how to not only open K-Cups and use them in your traditional coffee maker but other ways to brew coffee from K-Cups as well.

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Using K-Cups in a Regular Coffee Maker

Using your K-Cups in your regular coffee maker is not as hard as it might sound. While you certainly don’t want to put the K-Cup itself inside your standard coffee maker, you can get that freshly brewed taste and smell by opening the cup and using its contents in the coffee maker.

You’ll need a standard coffee maker, water, and a coffee filter, as well as your favorite flavor of K-Cup, of course. Remember that each K-Cup contains ground coffee, so it’s pretty simple to pour the coffee grinds into a coffee filter and run them through your coffee maker.

Espresso grounds in drip coffee maker

Add water to your coffee reservoir, peel the foil off your K-Cup, and empty it into the coffee filter you’ve placed inside of your coffee maker’s basket. The thing to remember about using your K-Cups in your regular coffee maker is that they are filled with enough grinds for one cup of coffee.

It will probably take at least two K-Cups to ensure the coffee is strong enough. Adjust how many K-Cups you use according to how strong you like your coffee.

This is the simplest method for using K-Cups in a regular coffee machine. However, it’s not the only method of making coffee from your K-Cups if your Keurig is broken. What if you don’t have a traditional coffee maker? In our next section, we’ll discuss other ways to get that coffee fix in the morning without having to resort to drinking instant coffee.

ground coffee in a K-Cup
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How to Use K-Cups in Drip Coffee Makers

Using your K-Cups in your regular coffee maker isn’t as hard as it might sound. While you certainly don’t want to put the K-Cup itself inside of your standard coffee maker, you can get that freshly brewed taste and smell by opening the cup and using its contents in the coffee maker.
Prep Time2 minutes
Active Time1 minute
Brew Time8 minutes
Total Time11 minutes
Course: Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keyword: drip coffee machine, K-cups
Yield: 1 cup
Cost: $1.50


  • Drip coffee maker
  • Paper filter
  • Coffee mug


  • 2 K-Cups
  • Filtered water


  • Add water to your coffee reservoir.
  • Peel the lid off of your K-Cups and pour the coffee into your paper filter.
  • Place the filter into your drip machine, add a mug below the brew head, and press the brew button.
  • Enjoy your coffee!

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The Pour Over Method

Not everyone owns a traditional coffee maker. That’s not a problem, as the pour-over method will give you a good cup of coffee from your K-Cup as well.

For this method, you’ll need a K-Cup, hot water, two coffee mugs, scissors, and cream and sugar if desired.

Step One

Since there won’t be a coffee maker pouring the hot water over your K-Cup grounds, you’re going to need to prepare your K-Cup for the brewing process. Take the foil off of your K-Cup, then pour the contents of the K-Cup into one of the coffee mugs.

Step Two

K-Cups have their own built-in filters, so this is the filter you’ll be using to make your cup of coffee. Turn the K-Cup upside down, then take your scissors and cut off the base of the cup, all the while making sure that you’re not cutting the filter. Cut as near the filter as possible. Your scissor cuts don’t have to be perfect; however, your goal is to use the K-Cup filter to filter the grounds.

ground coffee in a K-Cup

Step Three

After you have your K-Cup ready to go, heat some water on the stove. For the best results, heat the water just to boiling, turn off the heat, and let the water sit for 30 seconds. Once the water has cooled slightly, carefully pour the water over the cup with coffee grounds in it.

Complete the process of pouring the water into the mug slowly, instead of dumping the water into the cup all at one time, for the best results. Let the mixture of water and coffee grounds sit for 3-4 minutes before filtering.

Step Four

Once your coffee has finished steeping, take your hollowed-out K-Cup and set it over the other coffee mug. Now, take the coffee mug with your coffee mixture in it, and slowly pour it into the other mug through the K-Cup filter. Make sure that you go slowly so that your K-Cup filter doesn’t start to overflow.

The filter overflowing could get messy, ruin your coffee, and possibly burn you if the coffee is too hot. This is going to take a bit of time, so patience is key.

Once you’ve finished the filtering process, add sugar and cream, or just drink it the way that it comes. Sit back and enjoy your coffee and repeat, if desired.

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Final Thoughts

So, the answer to the question of whether you can open a K-Cup and use it in a regular coffee maker is a resounding yes. However, you do need to note that the K-Cup can’t be used in the standard coffee maker itself, just the grounds.

If your single-serve coffee maker goes on the fritz one morning, it’s comforting to know that you can still have your coffee until your new Keurig arrives.


Kate MacDonnell

Kate is a lifelong coffee enthusiast and homebrewer who enjoys writing for coffee websites and sampling every kind of coffee known to man. She’s tried unusual coffees from all over the world and owns an unhealthy amount of coffee gear.

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