You might be familiar with Keurig, since they currently dominate the pod coffee market. There’s a new player in town, though, and it’s none other than Verismo by Starbucks.
Can a coffee chain make great coffee machines? Find out in our Verismo v. Keurig showdown below!
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Verismo vs Keurig: At A Glance
If you’ve been drinking coffee long enough, then you’ve probably heard of Keurig coffee. Keurig is the most popular pod coffee company and started the single-serve coffee revolution.
Even with more competitors now compared to 1998, Keurig still reigns supreme and is still the number one market leader to this day.
And because it’s so popular, you wouldn’t have a hard time looking for parts, K-cups, or repairs for these machines.
Here are the basic features of a typical Keurig machine:
- Serving Sizes: From single-serve (8 oz.) to carafe (16 oz.)
- Coffee Pod: K-cup Pods
- Price: From $79 to $200
- Brew Type: Brewed Coffee/Drip-Style
- Warranty: One Year Warranty
Though Verismo isn’t as popular as Keurig and Nespresso, its sales aren’t too bad. But since it’s not as popular as the Keurig, there aren’t as many types of Starbucks coffee makers as there are Keurigs.
Take a look at some basic features of the Verismo below:
- Serving Sizes: One espresso shot/8 oz. milk-based espresso drink
- Coffee Pod: Verismo Pods
- Price: Around $100
- Brew Type: Espresso
- Warranty: One Year Warranty
Verismo vs Keurig: Looks and Design
There aren’t a lot of Verismo machines in the market, so you’re out of luck if you want to get something that fits your kitchen’s interior design.
The Starbucks coffee maker usually comes in a black-and-chrome design, but they can get adventurous sometimes. The Starbucks Verismo 580 has multiple color options, for example.
Keurig’s been around for much longer, so you can expect there are different Keurigs for every kind of coffee drinker.
The Keurig coffee maker wins this round overall, obviously. While we love the sleek design of the Verismo machine, it’s better to have plenty of choices so you can design your kitchen your way.
Both coffee makers are really easy to use and easy to clean. These two coffee makers have removable water reservoirs, programmable options, and make quick cups of coffee.
The Keurig K-Cafe makes four different sizes: 6, 8, 10, and 12 ounces. The Starbucks 580 makes only one size of coffee: 8 ounces.
That’s disappointing, especially if you want more coffee in the morning. But there’s a good reason behind the limited size, which we’ll get to when we talk about coffee quality.
But based on brew size alone, the Keurig K-Cafe is the clear winner.
The Keurig K-Cafe comes with a 60 oz. removable water tank, which means you wouldn’t have to refill until you’ve brewed around 6 cups of coffee.
The Verismo has a 1-liter water reservoir – that’s around 33 ounces. It’s half the capacity of the Keurig K-Cafe, but then again, the Verismo really is meant for just a single-serve.
It’s a drag having to refill water more often, so the Keurig wins this round.
The Starbucks machine is a very slow coffee maker. It’s still faster than a drip brew, but its performance is disappointing for a single-serve.
In our tests, the Keurig K-Cafe brewed coffee in under 40 seconds. The Verismo took nearly a minute before it came out with a great cup of coffee.
So if you’re a person who’s always in a rush in the morning, then the Keurig might be the better machine for you.
Ease of Use
The Keurig K-Cafe has three simple control buttons. Just pop in your K-cups, press a button, and you can make a great cup of coffee or add some milk with the milk frother included in the package.
The Verismo is also easy to use. You can make coffee with just one push of a button, and throw away the pods when you’re done.
Because the Keurig and Verismo are both pod-based coffee makers, you don’t have to deal with the mess of ground coffee.
For this round, it’s a draw between the two coffee makers.
Machine Maintenance and Cleaning
There are two important things to clean and maintain in brewing machines: the water tank, and the mineral deposits from hard water.
The K-Cafe is easy to descale. It just takes one press of a button to start the descaling process. And since the K-Cafe comes with a side-loaded removable tank, it’s also easy to clean and refill water.
It’s also pretty easy to descale the Starbucks machine. You’ll just have to press a button combination to descale. But the water reservoir in a Verismo is usually rear-loaded, so it’s harder to access and clean.
The Keurig coffee maker wins with all the features you’d expect from a single-serve coffee maker. From cleaning to serving size, Keurig has got you covered.
While the Starbucks machine is very easy to use, it’s also quite limited. While both coffee makers make easy coffee with just the push of a black button, Keurig mastered the art of convenience.
Verismo vs Keurig: Taste and Coffee Quality
This is where the two coffee makers compete. Keurig gives you variety, but Starbucks gives you a tastier cup of coffee, especially if you love your lattes and cappuccinos.
That’s in part because they use two different brewing methods. The Keurig is essentially a regular coffee machine, while the Verismo is an at-home espresso machine.
You might be a person who likes something different every day. If that’s the case, then it’s no surprise that Keurig coffee makers might fit you better.
With over 200 different K-Cups, you can take your pick from hazelnut coffee, and you can even find hot chocolate and tea K-Cup pods!
The Verismo isn’t a great choice if you want more variety out of your coffee. Their pods come in the usual Starbucks Coffee brand blends at different roasts. You’re even limited to the Verismo milk pods!
So if you’re making coffee for a crowd and they all have different tastes, the Keurig coffee maker is clearly the better choice.
For all that we love the different K-cups you can buy, the Verismo pods make a tastier cup. Like we said above, the Verismo coffee pods make espresso coffee, as opposed to the Keurig.
In coffee making, an espresso requires a certain amount of pressure for it to be called “espresso.” It’s because of the pressure that you get a bolder coffee at smaller volumes.
Keurigs make drip coffee quality, so even if you get a machine with a frother like the K-Cafe, you won’t get the same latte experience that you would in a coffee shop.
The Verismo is a 19-bar coffee maker, so you can expect to get cafe-quality espresso-based coffee drinks from the comfort of your home.
And if you like the Starbucks-quality coffee experience, then the Verismo comes very close. It tastes creamy and bold, while the Keurig’s lattes usually taste watered down because of the water-milk ratio.
If you’re a fan of bolder coffee, then the Verismo is the better choice. But if you don’t notice differences between different kinds of coffee, then you can choose any machine and it won’t disappoint.
Starbucks Verismo vs Keurig: Which Is Better?
The differences between the Verismo and Keurig are huge. They use different brew methods, so brewing settings and brew sizes are different per machine.
We recommend the Verismo if you like espresso-based coffee, like Americanos and lattes. The Verismo coffee maker makes tastier coffee overall, even if you are limited to Starbucks-brand pods.
But if you like more variety and flexibility, then Keurigs are a no-brainer. It’s a well-loved brewing system in the United States for a reason.
The Keurig comes at an unbeatable price for how packed it is with features. Even if you’re comparing Keurig vs. the competition, Keurig machines will blow every other coffee machine around.
And with your choice of K-cups, different third-party coffee makers, and coffee pods, you have the freedom to make coffee your way.
Verismo and Keurig are reliable coffee machines. They make great coffee and they’re really easy to use. While we think Keurig coffee machines are better in value, Starbucks machines make delicious coffee.
As with all things coffee, it’s down to your taste. But we hope that our review on the Keurig vs Verismo battle helped you decide your next coffee maker!