On a sunny Monday night, my wife, two sons and I went off in search of a new single-serve coffee maker. I’m very knowledgeable about this appliance having bought and tested 12 of them over the years. My wife and I like single-serve K-cup coffee makers because we wake up at different times and each only have one or two cups of coffee before heading out. Brewing a pot of coffee simply isn’t the best option for us.
For the past three years we’ve used the Tassimo T55 which uses T-discs. However, there is way more K-cup coffee selection than Tassimo T-discs so it was time to switch to K-cups. That meant we’d likely end up with a Keurig.
As Amazon Prime members we’d normally buy on Amazon, but we’re heading off on vacation shortly and didn’t want the box sitting in the front for 10 days so we packed up and went to a local store that sells all kinds of appliances. Fortunately, the store had a huge selection of single-serve coffee machines including multiple Keurig machines.
It came down to the Keurig Classic vs. Keurig K-Elite. The Classic is quite a bit cheaper but also has a smaller water reservoir. We decided to bite the bullet and opt for the more expensive Keurig with larger water reservoir. In the long run we won’t regret spending an extra $60 or so. After all, the real expense with these machines is the cost of K-cups, not the machine itself.
We got home and within 15 minutes had our new coffee machine set up on the counter ready for the morning. I forgot to buy some decaff K-cups because I was eager to try it right off the bat, but didn’t have them and didn’t feel like staying up all night as a result of gulping down a regular cup of coffee at 7:30 pm. I was resigned to wait until the morning to give it a shot.
Morning came fast as it usually does and the Keurig K-Elite produced a great cup of Starbucks coffee within minutes. Not as fast as our Tassimo T55 did, but fast enough. I like strong coffee so chose the middle cup size (8 oz.). Did I mention you can buy Starbucks coffee in K-cups? That’s a nice plus since I like that coffee. In fact, I’m happy to have a lot more coffee brands to choose from going forward.
Now that I’ve enjoyed some coffee from this single cup machine, it’s time to pen my Keurig K-Elite review. Hint – this is my favorite single-serve coffee maker after using 12 of these coffee making appliances. We chose well.
Table of Contents
- Keurig K-Elite Photo Gallery
- Keurig K-Elite Details
- K-Elite Pros and Cons
- Keurig K-Elite FAQ
- How long does the Keurig K-Elite take to brew a cup of coffee?
- What’s the tallest cup that fits in the Keurig K-Elite?
- Can the brewing temperature be adjusted with Keurig K-Elite?
- Does this Keurig coffee maker come with reusable K-Cups for coffee grounds?
- How large is the Keurig K-Elite water reservoir?
- Can you program the Keurig K-Elite to brew coffee at a specific time?
- Does the Keurig K-Elite brew iced coffee?
- Does the Keurig K-Elite come with a water filter?
- Does the Keurig K-Elite produce hot water on demand for tea and other things requiring hot water?
- Does the control panel have a touchscreen?
- Does the K-Elite make espresso?
- Wrapping it up…
- Coffee Quality
- Ease-of-Use & Convenience
Keurig K-Elite Photo Gallery
Here are some quick photos I took of it on our counter. I pretty much took shots from every angle.
=> Learn more here.
Keurig K-Elite Details
Keurig machines are known for taking a bit to brew coffee but Keurig has worked to improve this and has done so with the K-Elite. This machine brews a cup in about one minute.
Dimensions: 13.1″H x 9.9″W x 12.7″D
It’s a large coffee maker; bigger than I’d like but that’s the price of a large water reservoir I suppose. On the flip side, it’s very light and easy to maneuver. It’s definitely not as solid as our Tassimo T55. I’m not sure yet whether this is good or bad.
This thing is whisper quiet which is nice. Our Tassimo T55 was kinda loud. It doesn’t matter much for us since we have it in the kitchen but if you had this in smaller quarters or an office, the noise-level matters. You can barely hear that it’s brewing a cup of coffee.
Cup Size / Brew size Options:
You can choose to brew 5 different cup sizes (4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 oz.). My preferred size is 8 oz.
Option for a “strong brew”
This machine also offers brew-strength control. To make it stronger, push the “Strong” button. It’s about the simplest “brew setting” imaginable.
Temperature control range:
If you’re a coffee lover, you can adjust the temperature at which the water brews coffee from 187 to 192° F. It’s 192° F. by default.
The new K-Elite brews great, hot coffee but that’s largely due to the K-cup brand you get as well.
K-Elite Pros and Cons
Here’s a snapshot look at what I like and don’t like about this single-serve brewer.
- Uses K-cups: This is the main reason we bought this machine – we wanted to be able to buy K-cups which has a huge selection of coffee brands.
- Huge water reservoir: In my experience, the bigger the water reservoir, the better. It’s no fun anticipating a cup of coffee only getting delayed refilling the reservoir. It’s worse when you think you’re brewing a cup but it’s out or short of water.
- Looks decent: It’s not as cool-looking as Nespresso, but it’s not bad.
- Easy-to-use (no hassle): I don’t like appliances with so many features that it takes forever to use or figure out. I love simple and Keurig delivers simple in spades.
- Price: This thing doesn’t even cost $200 which is great. You can easily spend north of $250 on coffee machines but not with this… and this is one of Keurig’s higher-end coffee appliances.
- Accommodates reusable K-cup filters: It’ll be nice to buy bags of ground coffee or beans that we grind with a coffee grinder and use our reusable K-cup filters (purchases separately) instead of spending a fortune on single-use K-cups every day.
- Spillage container removes easily: The spillage container with our Tassimo was nearly impossible to remove. Not so with this machine – it easily slides away to dump out the excess coffee captured.
- Durable? It’s lightweight which is nice, but I’m not sure how durable this machine is. It feels a bit flimsy, but it’s way too premature to know whether this will compromise durability. If we get 3 years use out of it, I’ll be delighted.
- Size: It’s a big machine that needs quite a bit of height clearance. However, I guess that’s the price you pay for being able to accommodate taller travel mugs and have a large water reservoir.
Other than that I don’t have any complaints. It does what I want it to do relatively quickly, very quietly and the coffee tastes good.
Keurig K-Elite FAQ
How long does the Keurig K-Elite take to brew a cup of coffee?
The brew time for a cup of coffee is about 1 minute which is pretty good for Keurig machines.
What’s the tallest cup that fits in the Keurig K-Elite?
You can fit a travel mug up to 7.2″ tall and many other types of coffee cups. As for a carafe, if it’s taller than 7.2″ you’ll need to brew into a cup and pour it into the carafe.
Can the brewing temperature be adjusted with Keurig K-Elite?
Yes, the temperature can be adjusted from 187° to 192° F.
Does this Keurig coffee maker come with reusable K-Cups for coffee grounds?
No, it doesn’t come with a reusable coffee filter but it works with them. We bought a reusable filter separately. This way we can save cost and waste using ground coffee instead of K-cups all the time.
How large is the Keurig K-Elite water reservoir?
The water tank holds 75 oz. of water (2.2 liters). Since I use the 8 oz. brew size, that’s 9 cups of coffee which is awesome.
Can you program the Keurig K-Elite to brew coffee at a specific time?
Yes, you can program the “auto-on” to brew a cup of coffee at any time using the simple programmable clock and timer on the main control panel.
Does the Keurig K-Elite brew iced coffee?
Yes, there is an option to brew colder brew over ice.
Does the Keurig K-Elite come with a water filter?
Yes, it does. We didn’t bother using it, but it’s there if you prefer filtered water for your brewed coffee.
Does the Keurig K-Elite produce hot water on demand for tea and other things requiring hot water?
Yes, it does. Just choose your cup size and don’t put in a k-cup and it will produce hot water at the temperature you set. It’s faster than using a kettle.
Does the control panel have a touchscreen?
No, there is not a touchscreen. You use buttons to adjust the settings. I prefer this because it’s easier. I’ve used touchscreen appliances and it’s more confusing.
Does the K-Elite make espresso?
Technically, no it doesn’t. You need a proper espresso machine. Even if a K-cup claims to produce espresso, it’s not going to be the same as an espresso made from a proper espresso machine.
Wrapping it up…
If you have the space and want something simple, this is a great machine. In my view, it’s the best Keurig machine that works well and is ridiculously easy to use… and I’ve used 4 Keurig models over the years.
Related: Types of Coffee Bar Ideas
While bombing around on his bike, Nathan dreams up cool interior design article ideas for Homestratosphere.com. He loves penning the perfect introduction or clever description of a particular design. When not writing about design, he cycles, reads crime novels, barbecues (ribs are his specialty), entertains friends and hangs out with his beautiful wife and amazing kids.