Coffee beans or capsules: which is the best solution?

That’s the question on every coffee addict’s lips: are bean or capsule coffee machines superior?

Australia is known as a coffee-loving country, consuming 37 million kilograms of this delicious bean each year. We all love to go to our favorite cafe for a cup, but many Australians have chosen to buy their own coffee machine.

Once you have made this decision, you have an important choice to make. Will you opt for an automatic or semi-automatic bean-to-cup machine? Or the much simpler pod or capsule machine? It’s not an easy call to make, which is why we’ve put the 2 products head-to-head to see which one comes out on top.

If you want more information, check out our guide to Australia’s best coffee machines.

Bean vs. pod: Taste

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Whenever you sit down to drink a cup of coffee, the most important factor (apart from the mild, sweet caffeine dose) is the deliciously bitter taste. No matter where you fall on the coffee snobs spectrum, it’s hard to argue that bean-based machines aren’t winning here.

As any foodie will tell you, freshness is key to taste. While coffee capsules are hermetically sealed to retain as much freshness as possible, they are simply not the same as beans ground and then instantly turned into coffee.

Depending on whether you have an automatic, semi-automatic, or manual bean-to-cup coffee machine, you can exercise different levels of control over your coffee experience. So if you fancy yourself a barista, you can put that skill to good use with your friends and family and deliver even more delicious coffee. With a bit of luck.

That said, pod coffee machines are more consistent because you know exactly how much coffee is in each capsule. This means there will be less of a gap between each cup you brew in terms of taste and caffeine. Pod and bean machines can be equipped with milk frothing functionality for latte lovers.

Bean vs. pod: Convenience

Again, there is a clear winner in this category. Pod coffee machines work on the simple insertion of a capsule and delivering fresh coffee in seconds.

There is a wide range of effort involved in using a coffee bean machine. Manual machines require user input on factors like extraction time, and many have steam wands you can use to heat your milk to your desired temperature and consistency.

Automatic bean-to-cup machines, on the other hand, can take care of all of that at the touch of a button. But you’ll still need to blend coffee beans rather than a single pod, and go through a longer process compared to a pod machine. The noise of grinding beans can also be quite irritating.

Capsule machines also have a smaller kitchen footprint than their bean counterparts. That said, pod machines produce a lot more waste, which is harmful to the environment as well as being inconvenient.

Bean vs. pod: cleaning

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Pod coffee machines naturally also require much less cleaning. Bean-to-cup coffee machines are at a much higher risk of jamming, and many of them will require you to completely disassemble the machine in order to clean it. This could include 6 or more components.

This is not necessary for capsule machines, where the drip tray and capsule holder are the only individual components that require regular cleaning. Either way, you should descale your product at least every few months with vinegar or a similar liquid. Capsule and bean machines should contain mostly dishwasher-safe components, but be sure to check that this is true for your machine.

Bean vs. pod: Price

Capsule coffee machines are available around $100 and can go up to $600 for a truly high-end offering. Bean-to-cup machines, on the other hand, have a much higher variance. You can enter the market for around $400, but you can go all the way up to $2,500 if you really want to splurge.

The other factor to consider when it comes to price is buying coffee pods versus coffee beans. Capsules are almost always more expensive than beans, so you might find that your savings margin decreases as you use your machine.

The verdict

Ultimately, bean-to-cup machines have clearly beaten pod machines when it comes to brewing authentic, delicious coffee. You’ll have to decide for yourself if the greater ease of use and lower initial cost of a pod machine is enough to overcome this disparity.

Best coffee bean machine deals

32% off the Sunbeam Barista Max Coffee Machine

$100 Off Philips 2200 Classic Coffee Machine

$110 Off Philips LatteGo Fully Automatic Coffee Machine

Best capsule coffee machine deals

46% off Illy Portable Pod Machine

19% off the Nespresso Essenza Mini Solo coffee machine

18% off Lavazza A Modo Mio Capsule coffee machine

Want even more savings? Head over to Sales Finder or check out today’s best daily deals.

About Jeffery L. Parker

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