Compatible Tassimo pods, is there an alternative?

has been a few years since the much-desired Tassimo refillable pods appeared on the market. We can say that these pods are a commercial version of what so many users used to do at home by reusing pods. It is no longer necessary to cut or pierce a used pod.

The theory of how these refillable pods work is perfect. However, the practice is far from perfect. In theory we will fill the pod with the ground coffee we want, obtaining a delicious and very economical result. However, this is not true, as we will encounter problems with operation and taste.

Do Tassimo refillable pods work well?

The sellers of these refillable pods are usually totally unknown; therefore, it is very difficult to complain to them if something goes wrong. And believe me, a lot can go wrong if the pods don’t work:

  • Burns
  • Electrocution
  • Breakage of the machine
  • Etc

To find out if these pods usually work well, I went to reviews from other users on online stores like Amazon. Always look at the lower ratings:

Comments on the malfunctioning of Tassimo refillable pods
Comments on the malfunctioning of Tassimo refillable pods

As you can see, users say that they barely last 20 uses before they start to burst inside the coffee maker, filling everything with coffee residue. So if you pay almost $20 for a refillable pod that lasts 20 uses, you do not save money and spend more than buying original Tassimo pods.

Results of a refillable pod burst
Results of a refillable pod burst

Does the coffee in Tassimo refillable pods taste good?

Another of the big mistakes people make is to think that when we put any ground coffee into a refillable pod, it will taste perfect when prepared with a pod coffee machine. To explain this would take me a complete article. However, I will try to summarize it as much as possible.

  • A pod coffee maker uses 15 bars of pressure to prepare coffee. While an Italian coffee maker uses 2, an espresso machine uses 9, and a French press uses zero.
  • A pod coffee machine prepares an espresso in just 10 seconds. While an espresso takes 25 to 30 seconds, an Italian espresso machine takes several minutes, and a French press takes more than 4 minutes.

Assuming that the temperature is similar in all methods (this is a bit bold to say, but it simplifies the explanation), the only parameter we can modify is the thickness of the grind.

If you open a coffee pod, you will see that more than ground coffee, there is a kind of coffee powder with the exact thickness to be extracted correctly. The grind will be slightly coarser if a pod is specific for lungo.

When we use commercial ground coffee, we will use ground coffee that is too coarse for the refillable pods and will be under-extracted. When we taste an under-extracted coffee, we will notice that it lacks body and has a very sour taste, without sweetness and with a little cream.

Alternative to Tassimo pods

If you have a Tassimo coffee machine and want to use it, I advise always using original pods. Try to find the best offers in the official store and online stores or supermarkets, and when you find a good deal, buy pods for 6 months.

But if you want to save money, you should forget about pod coffee makers and try any of the methods I have shown you on this website in the past:

  • Moka Pot
  • French Press
  • Aeropress
  • Chemex
  • Hario V60
  • Flair Neo
  • Flair Pro-2
  • Nanopresso
  • Picopresso
  • Etc

All of these systems use ground coffee. Therefore, you will save money with them. The difference is that with these methods, you control all the factors that affect the final result, obtaining incredible results.

Written by Pablo Barrantes Nevado
I am Pablo Barrantes, a coffee lover. I decided to start this website to solve all the doubts that arise every day when preparing our favorite drink: coffee. I am an industrial engineer by profession, but I have worked in coffee shops for many years, where I have learned all the secrets about coffee machines and coffee. My passion for coffee has led me to investigate and study beyond the obvious, and thanks to this, I can offer solutions and give news about coffee and coffee makers. I hope you enjoy reading as much as I research, document and write here.

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