There’s no doubt about it, convenient and seemingly cheap K cups have revolutionized the coffee industry. You can hardly turn a corner in an office, home kitchen, or business without seeing a single-serve brewing machine and k-cup pods.
That said, in the name of being an informed consumer, let’s do the math to determine if cheap k cups are a myth or not.
Which is Cheaper? K Cup Pods vs. K Cup Filters
According to the New York Times, K-cup coffee costs about $50 per pound. For reference, the average cost of a higher-end coffee blend costs between $10 to $15 per pound.
“For example, the Nespresso Arpeggio costs $5.70 for 10 espresso capsules, while the Folgers Black Silk blend for a K-Cup brewed-coffee machine is $10.69 for 12 pods. But that Nespresso capsule contains 5 grams of coffee, so it costs about $51 a pound. And the Folgers, with 8 grams per capsule, works out to more than $50 a pound.”
This means that while the cost of supplementing your caffeine craving is still less than if you purchased a cup of coffee from Starbucks every morning, it is less of a solution than is advertised.
The average pack of 24 single-serve k cup pods cost $0.67 each, or approximately $16 total. Compare this with the cost of a reusable k cup pod plus a pound of your choice of coffee bean blend that costs $10 per pound and makes 48 6oz. cups.
K Cup Filters Are The Smart Choice
Debunking cheap k cups doesn’t just end with the economic cost of your cup of coffee. We’ve already talked about the environmental benefits of switching from disposable k cups to reusable filter pods, which includes eliminating plastic waste that fills up garbage dumps.
Though it may take an additional minute of time to fill up your own pod, it’s a habit that’s still convenient, saves you cash, and helps reduce unnecessary waste.
Not only does it reduce your overhead costs but also reduces your opportunity cost. You can customize how you’d like your coffee on the daily without worrying about wasting a coffee pod that contains $51 per pound coffee in it.
You Get What You Don’t Pay For
Cheap K cups are not actually cheap. In reality, they cost much more than convenience can justify. With refillable k cup pods, you’ll be receiving things that money can’t buy: peace of mind for creating a beverage with minimal environmental impact and satisfaction for saving hard-earned cash without effort.