How to Use and Clean a Re-Usable K-Cup

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One of the first brands of coffee that I received as a gift, was a 1lb bag of Death Wish Coffee. Knowing me, this was definitely an awesome gift to get for the holidays. Along with the coffee, a 2-pack of Lipperpod re-usable K-Cups for use in our one and only Keurig coffee maker was crammed into the Death Wish gift box. The stage was then set for some highly caffeinated times, and I was excited to give it a shot, but also had some questions...

Some of my reservations:

  • What if the grounds get out of the re-usable cup, and caused a huge mess?
  • Will it require a lot of cleaning time or extra prep work?
  • How in the world does the needle work around the hard plastic and metal?

Well lets jump into the process and see just how long it takes compared to a normal quick brew in the Keurig.

Step 1 - Fill that K-Cup to the Brim

I've both under-filled and over-filled the Lipperpod in an attempt to get different consistencies in my brewing, and the only difference I've really noticed is the strength of the coffee. In the instance of Death Wish coffee, if you follow the recommendation on their bag, you'll end up with something like this:

As you can see, the cup is nearly entirely full, making it quite a snug fit. The lid fits on nicely at this level and the water flows through easily enough because it's not compacted after closing it up. The mouth of the Lipperpod is actually fairly wide, and after some practice of shaping the coffee bag into that "V" shape, I don't even make a mess of it anymore. 

Step 2 - Getting the K-Cup into the Keurig

Now I'll be honest, I didn't really read the instructions on this one. I just fiddled around with it until the K-Cup fell into place like a child trying to fit a square block into a square sized hole. But after further thinking on it, I was curious as to HOW the hard-plastic actually settled into the Keurig properly. Normal K-Cups are punctured by a needle allowing the water to be injected into the cup, but this one is different. Here's how:

The bottom isn't actually porous at all! So while a normal K-Cup gets punctured at the bottom to let the brewed cofffee out, the Lipperpod actually forces all water out the strained side-walls of the cup. And the needle is worked-around via these ingenious little wells on the bottom of the cup. So while I was fidgeting around and twirling the cup around in the slot, I must have instictively known that there would be those slots at the bottom... yes let's say that.

Here's the final product in place and ready to brew:

There's actually a small arrow on each end of the cup, if you click on it and zoom in a bit, to show you which way should point upward to avoid that needle.

After each of those above 2 steps, which really only amount to about a minute (Enough time for the Keurig to heat up), you're ready to brew.

I'm a sucker for a good action shot

Step 3 - Clean Up

This was honestly the scariest part for me. What I expected to happen, and what actually happens, are two totally different things.

The 'Expected' scenario entails opening up the pod hatch, and being greeted by a mountain of molten-hot coffee grounds strewn around and getting into every part of the machine.

The reality of the situation is actually much different. There is not a single speck of coffee grounds that are left as residue in the pod hatch area. Honestly it's nice that something just seems to work as it should. I'm sure with long-term wear this might not always be the case, but after brewing a full 1lb bag through these two pods so far, I've ultimately been very pleased that there is no unnecessary mess.

The actual clean up process is also pretty simple, and doesn't take long.

Here's what the pod looks like when it's fresh out of the the Keurig: 

I'd say that's about what you'd expect, hot coffee grounds jammed inside of a hard plastic K-Cup. Be careful taking this out of the Keurig too soon, it can definitely cause some light burns from how hot the metal strainer sides get.

My second concern with the clean-up process, besides the brewer itself, was cleaning out this tiny little pod. It's not like a shot-glass, there are those little wells for the needle that protude to the inside. But rest-assured, that's not bad either.

#hand-model

Seriously though, as long as you don't let the grounds sit within the K-Cup for a whole day or more, I'm perfectly happy running it under water to remove the ground coffee and just a dab of soap to finish it off. 

All in all it's a pretty easy process, and if you're cleaning up right afterwards it only adds, I'd say, about 30 seconds to the whole brewing / cleanup process. Totally worth it if you don't want to miss out on some of the fantastic ground coffee options you come across. I can't attest to compatibility with ALL Keurig makers, but I can definitely say it works well in our Keurig K55

Final rinse: 

So there you have it, the neat Lipperpod that can turn your regular K-Cup brewer into a ground coffee serving machine.

Oh, and here's a picture of my editor watching my every move while writing this up:

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