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How To Reuse Keurig K-Cups and Save Money
The Keurig single cup coffee maker is a great invention for saving time as well as brewing a perfect cup of coffee in about a minute from the time it is turned on. Using the store bought K-Cups, which is Keurig's patented name for the single dose coffee pod, is also easy but can be much more expensive than buying ground coffee or grinding your own coffee beans. A box of 18 Tully's coffee K-Cups can cost over ten dollars. The amount of coffee they contain can be bought, in organic, fair trade beans or pre-ground, for about a dollar. You can see how using the Keurig can add up. I also never liked the idea that I was throwing away so much plastic each day. Since you can't recycle Keurig K-Cups in most cities the best you can do is use them over and over again.
A Cheaper Way
It is much cheaper to buy your own ground coffee or grind your own from beans but isn't the convenience factor the reason you bought the Keurig coffee maker in the first place? Keurig makes a reusable K-Cup called My K-Cup, which you can fill with your own coffee. It works OK for the most part, though some people do complain that the coffee it makes is slightly weaker than from the store bought K-Cups. I do own one, shown in the photo below and it works fine for me, possibly because I drink a stronger roast of coffee. If you still want to have the convenience of waking up in the morning and popping in a K-Cup and save money too, you can use a product called My-Kap.
How To Use The My-Kap System
All the My-Kay system consists of is a high impact, heat resistant lid that fits right inside the little K-Cups you have used and saved. All you have to do is buy a box regular disposable K-Cups at the store, use them, and then peel off the top plastic lid and wash out the coffee. I use the sprayer hose in the sink. Next you let them dry overnight or however long it takes in the dish rack. Once the filter media inside is dry you can grind some of your favorite coffee, spoon it in the K-Cup and snap on the My-Kap lid and seal it in a Ziplock bag along with several more for the week. Now you have the convenience of the one-shot coffee maker with about one third the cost.
Here is the My-Kap lid next to a regular used K-Cup and a bunch that are about to be refilled and placed in storage. I have twelve of the little plastic lids in several colors to represent different blends of coffee. The cost is about $12.00 for three but it doesn't take long for you to recoup that investment.
How Many Times Can You Reuse Them? You can reuse your Keurig K-Cups a dozen times or more. I have used some over twenty times. One thing you do have to pay attention to is the hole at the bottom. When you first use a store bought K-Cup the Keurig machine punches a hole in the bottom with a needle. You need to place the reused cup in the machine so that this hole fits over the needle. It's easy enough to do. That way you are not poking multiple holes in the cup as seen in the photo below.
You don't want to punch a new hole each time to reuse the K-Cup, as was done in the first photo. Otherwise you will brew weak coffee.
Below is a photo of the single use reusable K-Cup system or My K-Cup sold by Keurig. I own one but prefer the My-Kap system since I can pre-fill a whole bunch of them and place them in storage for the week instead of filling and rinsing the single use pod every day. The filter below works fine though and I use it when I am not in a hurry.
Both systems work well and are a great way to help save the environment and save money too.