If you are in a hurry and just want to find out what the best single cup coffee maker with a grinder is, then we recommend the KRUPS KM785D50 Grind and Brew as the best one.
Just because you’re not drinking liters of coffee every day, that doesn’t mean you have to compromise on the quality of your coffee. Coffee ground from fresh beans always tastes better than pre-ground, and there are some great options for small-batch brewing.
In this article I’m going to take a closer look at the best single cup coffee makers with grinders that are on the market right now.
Before that though I’ve put together a buyer’s guide which will help you work out exactly what you need from a machine like this.
In this article I’m going to review the following single-cup coffee makers:
- Breville BDC650BSS Grind Control Coffee Maker
- Hamilton Beach Grind and Brew Single Serve (49989)
- Mr. Coffee Single Cup Coffee Maker
- Cuisinart DGB-550BK Grind & Brew
- KRUPS KM785D50 Grind and Brew
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When you’re looking at machines in this category, it’s worth keeping the following things in mind:
How much capacity do you need?
Obviously we’re interested in a coffee maker that grinds and brews a really good single cup of coffee here!
Chances are though there’ll be occasions where you want to make a bigger brew for guests, or other members of the household.
Work out what your maximum serving size is likely to be. There’s no point having more than one coffee maker if you can get the job done with a single machine.
As long as you can also get that single cup easily enough, it’s always good to have the option to brew more when it’s needed.
Will you use a travel mug?
If you want to take your coffee on the go, then you’ll need to buy a machine that can actually accommodate the mug you own.
Look for a maker that has an adjustable cup height first. Then check the store listing to be sure your own mug will actually fit under there.
Some of these machines are actually supplied with a travel mug out of the box. That means you can be confident it will actually fit(!) – although you shouldn’t expect the best quality at this end of the market.
What’s the best type of grinder?
With machines like this you’re usually going to have a choice between using a blade or a burr grinder.
Burr grinders typically do a much better job of ensuring a consistent grind. That results in a better cup of coffee overall.
Blade grinders won’t do a terrible job of handling this process, but I’ll always go for the burr option whenever it’s available. I strongly recommend that you do the same for the best results.
Fresh beans or pre-ground?
You’ll always get a better cup of coffee out of freshly ground beans. The moment those bean shells are shattered apart, the process of flavor and aroma evaporation begins. No matter how well packaged the coffee ground are, it’s just an unavoidable part of the grinding process.
Still, there are some pre-ground brands I want to continue using, and I imagine you have some of your own.
If you want to carry on using your favorites from time to time, you’ll need a machine that lets you bypass the bean hopper.
Can you program it in advance?
As I have a young family, I really like being able to prepare tomorrow’s first cup of coffee the night before. It’s one of those little life hacks that gets everyone off to a better start.
Some machines will let you set things up with 24 hours notice, which means you get the day started with minimal effort.
Strong, medium and mild brewing options
You might like a stronger cup of coffee first thing each morning, but enjoy a milder brew as the day wears on.
If so, look for a coffee maker that has at least a few different strength settings to play around with. Every machine is different and so it will take you a while to get bean types and quantities married up with the settings correctly.
It’s worth the extra effort though to get your cup of coffee just right, using the beans you prefer.
This feature is also really useful if there are people in your household with different tastes. With a button push you can boost or weaken the cup you give them.
How easy is it to use?
The more functions a machine packs in, the trickier it can be to use. If you’ve lots of options to play with in terms of brew strength and size, make sure it has a clear LCD screen and minimal buttons to navigate all the options.
You will be able to find a few machines that are super-simple, two-button affairs. Obviously you’re trading off functionality for that simplicity, but this may be more important for you.
Is it easy to clean and care for?
All coffee machines need a little bit of TLC to keep in good working order, and it’s no different when it comes to a grind and brew single cup coffee maker.
For the most convenience, look for a maker with brewing elements that are easy to remove and are dishwasher-safe.
That way all you have to do is throw the worst culprits in once a day, then reassemble!
How noisy is it?
All grinders are going to make a little bit of noise when you use them. It’s just part and parcel of the process.
What you can do is look for a machine that has a short grinding time, without compromising on the results.
At least that way you’ll minimize the amount of time it spends churning away!
Those are the sorts of things you want to watch out for when shopping for this sort of coffee maker, then.
In this next section I’m going to take a closer look at some of the most popular single serve coffee makers with a grinder built-in.
The Breville BDC650BSS makes brew sizes all the way up to 12 cups in the supplied carafe. It can, however, also make just a single cup if that’s all you need.
You get quite a lot of versatility in this midrange machine as well. There are eight different strengths to choose from, for example, which is great if you have a lot of coffee drinkers in your house.
Even more usefully, you can actually skip the grinding process altogether and use your favourite ground coffee if you want a faster start to the day.
If you do want to stick to whole beans, the hopper at the top has a 0.5lb capacity, which I think is enough for smaller-batch brewing. It’s airtight too, so there’s no danger of the beans losing their freshness while they’re stored in there unused.
What if you’re somewhere in the middle when it comes to capacity though?
If you’ve got a travel mug, for example, and you want to take a slightly larger brew with you, the drip tray comes out completely. That gives you just under eight inches of space to play, so check your existing mug will fit in that space first.
The fact that you can get that tray out easily via the front also makes the Breville machine easy to clean as well.
In terms of using the machine, it’s pretty clear what’s going on at each stage. The LCD screen gives all the feedback you need on settings like brew strength, grinding time and so on.
If you don’t want to hang around for your first cup of the day, you can also program the machine ahead of time.
- Stainless steel carafe keeps the coffee warm for up to three hours.
- Grind sizes can be adjusted to suit the beans at hand.
- A generous 0.5lb bean hopper for a machine at this end of the market.
- Clean, modern and elegant design.
- Brews at a high temperature to ensure maximum flavor extraction.
- Machine is a little on the slow side at around six minutes for a single cup.
- Requires daily cleaning to keep in good working order.
- Hopper doesn’t feed the brew particularly well.
- Will take a little time to calibrate the grinder to your preferences.
- Brewing results can be somewhat inconsistent.
The Hamilton Beach 49989 is one of the few true single-cup – and only single-cup – grinder coffee makers.
Like the Breville machine I’ve just reviewed though, you can skip the grinding process completely and use pre-ground coffee if you prefer.
Freshly ground beans will always result in a better cup of coffee, but there are some pre-ground brands that I like to dip into from time to time.
The brewing process is really simple here. You add your beans to the bean hopper, add water to the machine, then just hit the Grind / Brew button. The machine takes care of the rest automatically!
If you want to use pre-ground coffee, you just need to add it to permanent filter basket supplied with the 49989. Add your water, and then again hit the Brew button. Honestly it’s very hard to mess things up.
As for the capacity, you’ve the option to make either one or two cups in any given session. The coffee dispenser actually has two spouts, which means you can fill both cups at the same time.
Beyond that you can brew with a bigger 16oz setting if you want to fill a travel mug. The adjustable cup rest moves up and down to accommodate whatever you place beneath it, and you’ve plenty of space to play with.
A really welcome feature beyond the brewing process itself is the self-cleaning cycle the machine performs.
There’s nothing worse than having to clear out a clogged up grinding chamber manually, but the Hamilton Beach machine takes care of that for you. Keeping that grinder clear also gives you better brews over the long term as well.
Overall it’s a very easy coffee make to use. Two buttons get the job done, so this is a really good option if you’re looking for absolute simplicity in your kitchenware.
- Filter basket is quick and easy to clean.
- Extremely compact and so perfect for smaller kitchen spaces.
- Self-cleaning cycle makes life very easy.
- Very simple controls make for an accessible machine.
- A little bit noisy during the grinding process.
- Not really designed for heavy use.
- Uses a blade grinder, rather than burr.
- Filter basket can let grounds through into the coffee.
- Bean hopper acquires quite a lot of moisture after brewing.
I really like Mr. Coffee machines, and their single cup coffee maker is a pretty good choice for one-cup brewing.
It’s a pretty fast coffee maker too, which is handy as you can’t program the thing in advance. It takes around 15 seconds to go from adding the beans to getting your cup, which is about as fast as these things get.
Again, you do have the option to make use of pre-ground coffee if you’d prefer. There’s no way of bypassing the beans though, so you’ll have to remove them if you want to enjoy a different cup.
If you’ve got one eye on your budget, then I think the Mr Coffee machine is quite a good option. It actually comes with a stainless steel travel mug out of the box.
As you’d probably expect it’s not the best one you’ll ever use, but it is stainless steel and double-walled. Your coffee should stay warm for a decent amount of time as a result.
When you’re not using the travel mug itself, you can raise and lower the cup holder to fit whatever sized mugs you happen to have in the house. There’s quite a bit of space to play with here, and I don’t think you’ll struggle to fit any kind of standard cup.
As for cleaning it’s a pretty simple machine to keep in good working order. One benefit of having one filter for whole beans and pre-ground coffee is that there’s only one element to actually clean!
- Including a travel mug with the machine is a really nice touch!
- Very good coffee delivered pretty quickly.
- A nice design that should fit well alongside your other kitchenware.
- Filter basket is dishwasher safe, which is really helpful for cleaning.
- There’s a tendency for coffee grounds to end up in your cup.
- You may need to run the grinding process twice to get a good consistency.
- A fair bit of cleaning up is required once your cup’s finished brewing.
- Some owners report that the included travel mug can start leaking over time.
- The travel mug is also very hot to the touch immediately after filling.
Cuisinart’s another company that’s carved out a well-deserved reputation for its coffee makers.
The DGB-550BK is one of the simplest machines in its range, but it still delivers a very good cup of coffee in small quantities.
There are a few settings to play with when it comes to quantities. You can choose to make between one to four cups when making small batches. Handily you can even interrupt the process halfway through to grab that first quick cup.
Once again you have the option to either have the machine grind whole beans for very fresh coffee, or you can opt for pre-ground if you’d prefer.
Obviously in this article we’re focusing on single-serve coffee, but I think it’s very useful to have a glass carafe supplied with the machine.
There are always occasions when you’ll need to keep visitors refreshed. The carafe included with this machine is good for holding around 12 servings.
You also get a gold tone filter and a charcoal water filter out of the box.
The former’s great for delivering a superior cup of coffee, while the latter helps purify the water. The less impurities that settle in the machine over time, the longer it’ll last (and the less frequently you’ll have to descale it too).
This is another coffee maker that you can program in advance as well. If you know you’re going to want a brew ready at a certain time, you can set things up to start with 24 hours notice.
On the subject of controls, this one’s a little fiddlier but nothing that should present too many problems. Six buttons are located on the front of the machine, and these control all the settings, from grinding to advanced timings.
- Brews very good coffee, even with oily coffee beans.
- Coffee pot keeps coffee drinkable for up to four hours.
- A well constructed and durable coffee maker.
- Lots of functionality in terms of brewing capacity
- Programmable and can be paused mid-brew for a quick cup.
- Blade grinder isn’t as effective as a burr grinder.
- You need to measure out your beans each time, rather than storing in bulk.
- Another rather loud grinder, and it takes around 30 seconds to process.
- Lots of components to clean after each brew.
- Carafe is not dishwasher-safe, and it’s prone to leaking over time.
I want to wrap things up by looking at KRUPS’ leading small-scale coffee machine.
You can choose between two and 10 cups with this machine, so it’s not quite a single serve machine.
With that said, manufacturers do have a tendency to use very small cup sizes when determining capacity. I think you can consider this a big single serving.
KRUPS’ Grind and Brew machine makes use of something called a conical burr grinder.
That’s very welcome to see in a machine at this end of the market, as this type of grinder is ideal for producing very consistent grounds. The end result is a much better cup of coffee!
There are five different grind sizes in total, so you can adapt to whatever beans you want to sample next. You can also tweak the brew strength as well, with three settings that range from mild to strong.
This kind of feature is always handy to have if there are people in your house who prefer their coffee weaker or stronger. I also like to go milder towards the end of the day, so this works really well for me.
The LCD screen is a simple affair, but it’s easy enough to navigate. You can also use these controls to program the machine in advance, and get that first cup of the day set up the night before.
It’ll also keep your coffee warm for around two hours without the flavor being affected too much.
- A very nice design that really stands out in the kitchen
- Conical burr grinder provides consistent grinding results.
- Carafe pours well, and without making a mess.
- All settings are easy to program.
- Grinding compartment hatch is tricky to remove and replace during cleaning.
- Beeps quite loudly when the brewing cycle is over.
- Carafe is quite a tight fit within the body of the machine.
- You’ll need to agitate the beans a bit to keep them moving.
- It’ll take you a while to get your bean quantities and settings just right.
Looking at the market overall, my top pick for this kind of coffee maker is the KRUPS KM785D50 Grind and Brew.
The conical burr grinder does a great job of achieving even coffee grounds, and there are all the options you’d want in terms of grind size and brewing strengths.
You also have the option to use pre-ground coffee if you want to save a little bit of time. It’s also pretty simple to access all of those options with the LCD screen, and the machine really looks good in the kitchen.
Click here to read more opinions on this popular coffee maker.