The Best Single Serve Coffee Makers in 2021

Best Single Serve Coffee Makers
Image by Aleshyn Andrei / Canva Photos

If you’re anything like us, you need some delicious brew in the morning to get you going – and maybe another cup or two throughout the day to keep you going. But coffee shop specials aren’t cheap, and that mile-long drive-through line has made you late to work way too many times. That’s why single serve coffee makers are all the rage. Imagine being able to enjoy your coffee as soon as you wake up, and from the comfort of home! Start doing your mornings better with the best single serve coffee maker. 

Note:

Our Shelf commitment to environmental responsibility, means strongly suggesting that you consider using reusable “K-Cups” or reusable single-serve coffee filters with your machines if possible. For the best options check out our product roundup.

Our Top Picks

Here’s the bottom line:

Keurig K-Slim Single Serve Coffee Maker Best Overall: Keurig K-Slim
This Keurig has a large water reservoir, 3 cup sizes to choose from, a removable drip tray for taller travel mugs, and is slim in size to take up minimal counter real estate – what more could you ask for?
Keurig K-Mini Plus Coffee Single Serve Coffee Maker Runner Up: Keurig K-Mini
For mini kitchens, check out this mini Keurig that has a mini water reservoir you fill up before each use and comes with its own K-cup storage chamber!
BLACK+DECKER Personal Coffeemaker Best Budget: BLACK+DECKER Personal
With an included permanent filter, this drip single serve coffee maker is an eco-friendly option that won’t break the bank.
Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker Best Rated: Keurig K-Classic
The true classic Keurig comes with over 60,000 5-star reviews and plenty of versatile features that make it stand out above the rest in every respect.
Keurig K-Classic Single Serve Coffee Maker Best Drip: Hamilton Beach Scoop
If you prefer drip coffee to the whole “pod” thing, check out the Hamilton Beach Scoop coffee maker, where the coffee scoop doubles as a permanent coffee filter!
AdirChef Single Serve Mini Coffee Maker Best Compact: AdirChef Mini
The AdirChef Mini is small but powerful so you can bring your favorite coffee maker with you on the go. 
Keurig K-Elite Single Serve Coffee Maker with Iced Coffee Capability Best for Iced Coffee: Keurig K-Elite
For iced coffee lovers, the K-Elite is here with a specialized iced coffee setting, amongst all the other knockout features we’ve come to expect from the Keurig name.
Sboly Single Serve Brewer with Grinder Best with Grinder: Sboly Brewer with Grinder
As a true coffee enthusiast, you know how important it is to grind your own beans – as does Sboly, who created a grinder and single-serve coffee maker combo.
Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio 2-Way Coffee Maker Best Single Serve and Pot Coffee Combo: Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio
For the office divided, this dual machine makes drip coffee into a pot on one side and single serve coffee from grounds or K-cups on the other!
 

A Closer Look: Best Single Serve Coffee Makers

Nothing should get between you and your coffee. Which is why we’ve made it easier to get that perfect cup with our choices below.

1. Keurig K-Slim Single Serve Coffee Maker

The best single serve coffee maker

Brand: Keurig | Coffee: K-Cups | Capacity: 0 | Dimensions: 15.2 x 4.7 x 12.1 Inches | Price: 💰💰

Keurig is the name brand that we all associate with single serve coffee makers, so it’s no surprise that they make our top pick. The K-Slim model is, as the name suggests, slim in size so it takes up minimal space on your counter. But it still has a 46-ounce water reservoir that can fill up to 4 cups of joe before needing to be topped up. The reservoir itself is fully removable for easy filling and cleaning as needed. You can choose from 3 different serving sizes (8, 10, and 12 ounces), and thanks to the removable drip tray, you can even use your favorite travel mug.

  • Simple operation with clearly labeled buttons
  • Energy efficient device automatically turns off 5 minutes after brewing
  • Compatible with K-cups and universal reusable K-cup filter for grounds
  • Some reviewers reported that their “descale” button often flashes even after the machine has been descaled
  • A few reviewers had ground get stuck on the lower puncture needle, which led to coffee grounds clogging the machine (they were able to clean the needle off to solve the problem pretty easily) 

2. Keurig K-Mini Plus Coffee Single Serve Coffee Maker

The runner-up best single serve coffee maker

Brand: Keurig | Coffee: K-Cups | Capacity: 6-12 Ounces | Dimensions: 11.3 x 4.5 x 12.1 Inches | Price: 💰💰

Our runner up is also a Keurig, this time the K-Mini model. This smaller machine takes up even less space on your counter, and is truly designed with a single cup of coffee in mind. Each brew uses all available water in the reservoir, which can be up to 12 ounces to suit your coffee needs. The reservoir is still removable so you can fill it easier (and clean it, if needed), and the drip tray also comes out to accommodate travel-sized mugs. A chamber built into the rear of the machine provides storage space for your cord, making coffee on the go more convenient. 

  • “Strong” brew setting for those who like a darker cup of joe
  • Energy efficient automatic shut-off 90 seconds after brewing
  • Includes K-cup storage container that fits flush into the coffee maker and holds up to 9 pods
  • There’s no memory feature, so you have to select “strong” for every cup 
  • Each brew uses all available water, so you have to fill the reservoir for every cup

3. BLACK+DECKER Personal Coffeemaker

The best budget single serve coffee maker

Brand: BLACK+DECKER | Coffee: Grounds | Capacity: 15 Ounces | Dimensions: 10.2 x 7.0 x 6.9 Inches | Price: 💰

If you’re looking for quick morning coffee at an affordable price, BLACK+DECKER has you covered with this machine that’s less than $20. It comes with its own compatible travel mug so you know you have a cup that fits, and an eco-friendly reusable filter basket. Since it uses drip-over brewing, you can use your favorite grounds and adjust the amount to get the perfect strength. The grounds chamber is removable for easy cleaning.

  • Automatic shutoff saves energy after brewing
  • Brews directly into included travel mug, which is dishwasher-safe for easy cleanup
  • Simple one-button operation means no confusing settings before you’ve had your caffeine fix
  • The included travel mug has poor insulation that may not stand up to everyday use with hot coffee
  • Drip-over brewing style means you can only use coffee grounds (not K-cups) and can be messy to clean up

4. Keurig K-Classic Single Serve Coffee Maker

The best rated single serve coffee maker

Brand: Keurig | Coffee: K-Cups | Capacity: 48 Ounces | Dimensions: 13.0 x 9.8 x 13.3 Inches | Price: 💰💰💰

Manufacturer/Brand: Keurig | Coffee: K-Cups | Capacity: 48 ounces | Dimensions: 13.0 x 9.8 x 13.3 inches | Price: 💰💰💰

The Keurig K-Classic is what most of us picture when we think “single serve coffee maker.” And with over 63,000 5-star reviews, it’s certainly the best Keurig single serve coffee maker on the market. It has that original Keurig look with all the newest features, like 3 cup sizes, a 48-ounce water tank, and instant brewing in under a minute. As with the other Keurigs on this list, the drip tray is removable to make space for travel mugs, and the water reservoir comes out for easy filling and cleaning. Operation is simple with a backlit button for each cup size, a power button, and an auto-off feature that activates 2 hours from the most recent brew to save energy. Other LED indicator lights let you know when the machine needs more water, when the water is heating up, and when it’s time to “descale” (clean) your coffee maker.

  • LED indicator lights when action is needed
  • Get your fix quick with less than 1 minute brew times
  • Large, removable water tank can supply 6+ cups of coffee per fill
  • Some reviewers reported dripping while water heats up
  • When left on, brewing takes under a minute, but if you’ve just turned it on, the machine requires at least a minute to heat up for the first cup

5. Hamilton Beach Scoop Single Serve Coffee Maker

The best single serve drip coffee maker

Brand: Hamilton Beach | Coffee: Grounds | Capacity: 14 Ounces | Dimensions: 8.4 x 6.7 x 8.7 | Price: 💰

If you’re looking for a drip coffee maker rather than something that uses coffee pods, look no further than the Hamilton Beach Scoop. This innovative machine comes with a single-serve coffee scoop that doubles as a coffee filter. Simply fill the scoop with your favorite grounds, set the scoop into the machine, and turn it on. This makes clean-up much easier than other machines that use coffee grounds, because the scoop has a handle and can easily be carried to the trash to dump used grounds and then to the sink for a quick rinse. The machine itself is designed to accommodate taller travel mugs and comes with a built-in drip tray to catch any errant coffee. 

  • Medium water reservoir can supply around 2 cups per fill
  • “Regular” and “bold” settings to suit your coffee strength preferences
  • Included grounds scoop doubles as a filter and has two measuring lines for different coffee strengths (or cup sizes)
  • The mesh of the scoop isn’t very fine, so if you have finely ground beans, you may end up with grounds in your coffee
  • The “regular” and “bold” buttons can be finicky, so check to make sure the indicator light comes on to confirm the button depressed properly

6. AdirChef Single Serve Mini Coffee Maker

The best compact single serve coffee maker

Brand: AdirChef | Coffee: Grounds | Capacity: 15 Ounces | Dimensions: 6.7 x 5.1 x 10.1 Inches | Price: 💰

The AdirChef Mini is a compact little thing perfect for coffee enthusiasts who are always on the go. It’s lightweight and compact enough to go where you do, and comes with its own travel cup that stores easily in the machine when not in use. The eco-friendly permanent filter eliminates the need for disposable paper ones, which means you don’t have to worry about bringing any with you on your trip. Plus, there are 5 fun colors to choose from!

  • Stainless steel travel mug is tapered to fit most car cupholders
  • Lightweight, compact device is easy to bring with you wherever you go
  • Integrated permanent filter is eco-friendly and eliminates need for disposable paper ones
  • The included permanent filter has a loose mesh that many reviewers felt led to watered-down coffee
  • Though the exterior is stainless steel, the interior of the included mug is plastic, which some users disliked

7. Keurig K-Elite with Iced Coffee Capability

The best single serve coffee maker for iced coffee lovers

Brand: Keurig | Coffee: K-Cups | Capacity: 75 Ounces | Dimensions: 12.7 x 9.9 x 13.1 Inches | Price: 💰💰💰

Keurig is at it again with the K-Elite. This machine looks pretty similar to the K-Classic, but don’t let that fool you. The crowning glory of the K-Elite is its iced coffee capability. At the touch of a button, you can enjoy full-flavored coffee that’s brewed hot but served cold – perfect for warmer days. In addition, the K-Elite features a massive 75-ounce water reservoir that’s fully detachable for easy filling and cleaning, and also has the standard removable drip tray so you can fill taller cups and travel mugs. You can choose from 5 different cup settings and customize water temperature to get the perfect brew every time. The automatic shutoff feature is also programmable to suit your needs, and there’s even a high-altitude setting to solve the pressure problem you get at higher altitudes.

  • Iced coffee setting for bold, flavorful iced coffee in an instant
  • Customizable water temperature, cup size, and brew strength
  • Large 75-ounce water reservoir supplies plenty of cups before needing to be refilled (great for office settings)
  • A few reviewers had trouble with the automatic on feature
  • Because the water reservoir is so big, it’s very heavy when full and may be difficult to carry to and from your machine

8. Sboly Single Serve Brewer with Grinder

The best single serve coffee maker with grinder

Brand: Sboly | Coffee: K-Cups | Capacity: 14 Ounces | Dimensions: 7.3 x 5.4 x 11.6 Inches | Price: 💰💰

True coffee enthusiasts know the hidden flavors you can coax out of your beans by grinding them yourself. So if you’re looking to get into the single serve coffee game but still want to grind your own beans, check out the Sboly Single Serve Brewer with Grinder. This machine comes with a 60-gram capacity bean grinder that uses between 17,000 and 24,000 rotations per minute to give you a uniform grind perfect for bold, rich body. If you’re in a hurry, you can always switch over to K-cup capability. 

  • Compatible with grounds and K-cups for versatile use
  • Automatic self-cleaning setting cleans and descales the machine for you
  • Grinder uses stainless steel blades that spin up to 24,000 rpm for uniformly ground beans
  • The water reservoir is located in an awkward position and can be difficult to fill
  • As the drip tray is not removable, this machine isn’t compatible with tall travel-sized mugs

9. Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio 2-Way Coffee Maker

The best single serve and pot coffee maker

Brand: Hamilton Beach | Coffee: K-Cups, Ground | Capacity: 40 Ounces | Dimensions: 10.2 x 10.6 x 13.9 | Price: 💰💰

Whether you’re in an office with a bunch of people who like their coffee different ways, or you work from home and just like the freedom of versatility, the Hamilton Beach FlexBrew Trio has you covered. This handy coffee maker has a standard drip-over brewer that fills a standard coffee pot on one side. On the other side is the single serve part, which can be made from K-cups or grounds. The coffee pot holds up to 12 cups of coffee, and has a warming plate to keep those cups warm until you need them. The programmable interface can be set up to start brewing at a specific time, so your coffee is ready in the morning when you are. On the single serve side, the drip tray is removable to accommodate travel-sized mugs. Both sides have their own water reservoir and can be operated independently of one another.

  • Single serve K-cup and grounds coffee maker with removable drip tray
  • Regular and bold brewing options to suit your coffee strength preferences
  • Standard pot coffee maker on one side with warming plate and programmable start time
  • At the end of the single brew cycle, the machine motor gets very loud for about 10 seconds
  • The warming plate on the pot coffee side turns off while you use the single serve side, but turns back on automatically when the single serve coffee is done

What to Look For

Replacing the k-cup in the best single serve coffee makers
Image by Canva Photos

So what is the best single serve coffee maker? That answer depends on you! Many of these machines look pretty similar, so let’s go through the features you’ll want to focus on to figure out which ones stand above the rest.

1

Grounds vs K-Cups

K-cups are the most popular vessels for single serve coffee. Pop one in, turn on your machine, and you’ve got a hot cup in no time. Plus, they come in all kinds of flavors and brands now, so there’s something for everyone. 

But if you’re committed to the freshness of home-ground beans (or just want to buy grounds in bulk because it’s cheaper), there are plenty of single serve machines that can brew drip-over style. 

Some machines can actually do both, so you can decide day-by-day which you prefer.

2

Brew Time

It’s easy to want to pick the single serve machine with the fastest brew time. After all, the faster you can get your coffee, the better. But an extra minute or two can be the difference between the right water temperature for strong coffee and the wrong water temperature for weak, watery coffee. 

For the most part, you’re looking for a brew time somewhere between 2-5 minutes. 

3

Brew Strength

How strong do you like your coffee? While some single serve machines will let you adjust the brew strength, most don’t. So keep in mind your preferences as you read product descriptions and reviews. 

4

Water Filtration System

You might not care about the water filtration system, but don’t discount it just yet. If your machine has a larger reservoir, you might have room-temperature water sitting for hours (or days) at a time before it gets used. A quality filtration system ensures your coffee tastes purer and has less contaminants.


Further Reading

best coffee makers with grinders
The 8 Best Coffee Makers with Grinders
The Best Resuable K-cups
The 8 Best Reusable K-Cups
French Press vs Drip Coffee
French Press Vs. Drip Coffee
Best Manual Coffee Grinders
The 7 Best Manual Coffee Grinders
Best Reusable Coffee Filters
The Best Reusable Coffee Filters
How to Make Espresso with French Press
How to Make Espresso with a French Press