Can You Make Good Espresso Using K Cups?

Can You Make Good Espresso Using K Cups?

Mention the words “K cup” and espresso in the same sentence to an espresso snob and watch their reaction.  Their faces will look like they have chewed tin foil and they will go out of their way to tell you how wrong you are to even try making espresso using a single serve coffee maker.  Are they right?  Is is impossible to make a good cup of espresso using K cups?  Well, yes and no.

Drinking Really Bad Espresso

Espresso is actually the name of the process used to make this coffee drink.  Hot water and steam is pressure forced through tightly pack finely ground coffee, resulting in a few ounces of intensely flavored espresso.  There isn’t a brand or grind of coffee that is espresso, the name refers to the process.  Knowing this, is it possible to produce this result using a single serve coffee maker?

While purists will say no, the reality is not quite that clear cut.  Most single serve coffee makers, notably Keurig, use a type of brewing process that imitates some of the espresso process.  Hot water and steam is forced through a pod of tightly packed ground coffee and, within minutes, you have a cup of coffee.  It’s not going to be espresso in the traditional sense, but some of the K cups for espresso do a very good job of coming quite close to creating that rich, strong espresso taste.

Choosing An Espresso K Cup That Tastes Like Espresso

Choosing the right K cup to make espresso is the most important step.  Most of the latest models of single serve coffee makers are using the same technology, and they designed to make coffee using steam and pressure.  This means that you want to find K cups that are designed for espresso.  They will contain very finely ground coffee that is packed very tightly into the pod.  The pods are vacuum sealed, not only for freshness but to keep the coffee grounds from getting loose.  Remember that espresso isn’t a flavor.  When you are choosing a K cup for espresso, look for dark roast and expect to pay more than a standard K cup.

A Few Of Our K Cup Favorites For Espresso

LavAzza Espresso K CupsLavAzza Espresso is one of our favorites.  LavAzza makes a great dark roast coffee that is wonderful when brewing with a traditional espresso maker.  This K cup makes espresso with that same rich flavor.

SF Bay Espresso Roast not only tastes great, the K cup itself is compostable and bio-degradable.  One of the dirty secrets of K cups and single serving coffees is that the cups can’t be recycled.

Timothys Rainforest EspressoTimothy’s Rainforest Espresso is our third choice for a good K cup espresso.  This coffee is Rainforest Alliance Certified, an accepted standard for buying coffee that is ecologically sound.  Plus, it tastes good!

Can you get a good cup of espresso from a single serve coffee maker?  A K cup won’t be quite the same as a traditionally brewed cup of espresso, but you can get a decent version of espresso if you shop around.

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