My Keurig Brewed a Half Cup- Now What?!


It’s 6am, you have had a solid 5 hours of sleep, you NEED coffee now.  You think to yourself, everything is going to be ok, my Keurig will have a steaming hot cup of joe in my mug in a mere 60 seconds.  You choose your favorite roast, pop ‘er in and…you hear sputtering, a little bit of coffee comes out then, nothing.

Need...Morning...Coffee...

This is probably the number one complaint I have heard when it comes to  Keurig performance and believe me, I get it.  But, with a little bit of know how, in most situations you can fix this issue.

If your Keurig brews a short cup it may be caused by one of the following:

  • The exit needle is clogged by coffee grounds, tea or cocoa mix. Click here to view instructions on how to clean the needle and brew basket.
  • It may be time to perform a descaling. Click here for instructions on how to descale your unit.
  • The water reservoir was removed during the brew process. Place the water reservoir back onto the brewer and perform a cleansing water only brew without a Kcup.
  • You may have a faulty brew basket (this actually happened to me). If your brewer is less than a year old, call Keurig and they will send you a brand spanking new one for free. If your unit is out if warranty, call us of course!

Those are the “on the record” instructions.

Off the record, hit the brewer.  Yep, pretend you are the Fonz and give it a little tap on the side. Air can get trapped in the tubing and prevent the coffee from exiting.  A little jiggle will move the air along and back to a brewin’ you will go!

I hope this helps! If I can help prevent one person from having to face a dreaded coffee less morning then my job here is done.

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Keurig- The Perfect Gift For a College Student


Keurig is the perfect gift for a college student

Who loves coffee more than college students? Um…pretty much no one.  This generation has high standards when it comes to their morning brew.  What do you expect, they have grown up with a Starbucks on every corner and gourmet coffee in their homes.  Very few have witnessed their parents make instant coffee in the microwave (yuck) as I have.  Finding them the perfect “off to college” gift has never been easier, a Keurig is on every college students wish list.

Not only will the college student in your life be eternally grateful to have a Keurig in their dorm room, you can rest easy that you have made a wise buying decision for many reasons:

1) Junior will not be tempted to stop at the campus coffee shop on the way to class and blow $3-$4 of his or her limited budget.  I can completely attest to this, many years ago I worked at a college coffee shop and was amazed at the amount of money these students were spending everyday!

2) If there is not a kitchen or access to coffee near your students dorm, with limited transportation getting to a store may be near impossible leaving them coffee-less.

3) A Keurig is simply essential for all nighters!

4) They can brew a cup to go and be out the door in under a minute. Assuring that they make it to class on time (hopefully).

5) A Keurig minus Kcup coffee serves as an instant hot water dispenser, creating a dual purpose.  Your son or daughter can prepare instant oatmeal and ramen noodles with their coffee brewer.

Now the nitty-gritty, which one to buy.  Your instincts are going to tell you to buy the B31 Mini.  This unit is heavily marketed to college students and comes in a variety of beautiful colors.  I did have one of these units and loved it but, there are drawbacks.

1) The B31 Mini does not have a water reservoir.  That means it has to be filed with water every time you use it.  The chances of your students dorm room having a sink are between slim and none.  They are not going to enjoy running to the nearest sink every time they want a cup of coffee, who would? This concept completely destroys the convenience factor of the Keurig.

2) The Mini is not UL approved for a commercial setting.  Some dorms will not allow things such as toasters, coffee makers and microwaves for fear of a fire.

3) A travel mug will not fit under the brew spout of this brewer, eliminating on the go coffee.

To get the most for you hard-earned dollars we recommend the B145 Keurig brewer.  This unit is  commercial grade and UL approved. The B145 is sleek and stylish built with a heavy grade plastic and chrome accents.  It is not much larger than the Mini and the best part is you get more bang for your buck.The B145 is generally only priced $10-$20 higher than Mini units and significantly lower than Keurig’s that you see for sale in retail stores.  To read an in-depth comparison click here. A better brewer for less money?  Yep. Get this, it also comes with a 12 count variety pack of Kcups!

What about the Kcup coffee you say? I am glad you asked, we have the perfect solution.  Set up an automatic monthly coffee delivery.  You can choose a flavored coffee tour or traditional roasts based on their taste preference.  Two boxes will be shipped directly to their dorm every month and billed to your credit card.  It doesn’t get any easier than that!

If your loved one would prefer to make their own coffee choices, an online gift card might be a better option.  You can purchase a gift card for any dollar amount and we will send it to them electronically to be used at their convenience.

It is clear that purchasing a Keurig for the college bound makes sense but, will they like it?  Two words- heck yes.  Take a look at these Twitter messages from actual college students:

“The fact that we have a Keurig for our dorm room makes me feel completely prepared for college now”

“Shout out to my parents for buying me a keurig for college!!”

“I’m just gonna take the keurig to college with me and hope mom doesn’t notice.”

“Now that my dorm room will have a keurig, I know I have a chance at surviving college”

“My parents think I can wait until college to use my keurig….HAHAHAHAH I’VE BEEN WAITING FOR THIS MACHINE FOR LIKE 3 YEARS COME TO ME BABY”

If you are ready to send little Johnny of to college armed with a Keurig and gourmet Kcup coffee, we have made it very easy for you.  Click here to take a look at the Keurig starter package.  This gift set includes a Keurig B145 brewer, a storage carousel and a variety of 42 Kcup coffees!

Have you considered purchasing a Keurig for the college student in your life?

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How Many Calories are in a Keurig Kcup?


how many calories are in a keurig kcup

This post was inspired by a customer inquiry that got me thinking… do consumers know that most Keurig Kcups are calorie and sugar-free?

Yep. that’s right, no need to worry.  The majority of Keurig Kcups are simply coffee and a filter, nothing added.  Since ground coffee is calorie free so are Keurig Kcups.  At first I could not understand the confusion on this subject.  Then I read the descriptions of some of the coffees.

Caramel Vanilla Cream reads:

A light roast, flavored Kcup coffee with a traditional French Vanilla flavor taken up a notch by the addition of buttery caramel and hints of brown sugar!

Chocolate Glazed Donut:

Chocolate Glazed Donut is a combo that’s hard to resist. A fresh chocolate donut, topped with a sweet, sugar glaze, dunked into your mug.

Who wouldn’t think that these coffees are filled with sugar, fat and calories?!  If I did not know better, I certainly would question it.  When you read the descriptions of Keurig Kcups or any coffee for that matter, know that the author is simply describing the hints of flavor that they detect in the coffee, not the actual ingredients. If you still aren’t sure, look for nutritional information. Or I should say lack there of. If there are no ingredients or nutritional information is listed it means that it only contains coffee and you are good to go!

There are a few Keurig Kcups that DO contain calories.  They fall under two categories. Brew Over Ice teas and coffees (except Twinings) and Cafe Escapes. Keurig has kept those around 60 calories each.Cafe Escapes nutrional information

When in doubt consider the consistency of the coffee.  If it is creamy- it contains calories and most likely sugar.  If it is a simple black coffee, calories are not an issue.

Keurig Kcups are a part of my everyday world and have been for many years. Sometimes I don’t see things from your perspective.  I hope to answer any questions that you might be wondering to yourself. But, by all means, please ask.  I need your help in making sure that everyone is happy and confident with their Keurig Kcup choices!

Keurig Kcup coffee blog authors bio

What is an Extra Bold Keurig Kcup?


extra bold Keurig Kcup coffeeThere are a growing number of Keurig Kcups labeled “extra bold”.  As a matter of fact our entire line of Tully’s Kcups are now extra bold in addition to our tried and true favorites such as Dark Magic and Newman’s Special Blend.  Extra bold Keurig Kcup coffees are growing in popularity and rapidly becoming best sellers.

But, what the heck does extra bold mean?

First, I will tell you what it does not mean.  It does not mean dark roast.  It does not mean burnt and bitter. This is a common misconception.  There are a variety of extra bold Kcup coffees available.  They range from light, medium and dark roasts. Included are Tully’s Breakfast Blend which is a light roast and our newest addition Tully’s Hawaiian Blend which is a medium roast.  Both very smooth, both lack any burnt or bitter taste.

Extra bold simply means more coffee.

Extra bold Keurig Kcups contain slightly more coffee than regular Kcups resulting in a stronger brewed coffee.  I was curious as to exactly how much more coffee we are talking about so I conducted an experiment.  I.E.,  I ripped the lids off a regular and an extra bold Kcups, poured the coffee on the counter and took a picture.

extra bold vs regular keurig kcup coffee

I was really surprised at the difference. There was  quite a bit more coffee in the extra bold Kcup! This explains why I like them so much… I love a “thick” cup of coffee- not necessarily dark or even super strong I just like a nice body to and extra bolds never disappoint.

My dream is that one day all Kcups will be available in both regular and extra bold to satisfy both ends of the spectrum Green Mountain if you are reading this , please place my request : )

Extra bold coffees are perfect for filling a large cup or a travel mug but, they are key to making a good cup of iced coffee. The extra coffee allows them to avoid tasting watered down by all of the ice.

Have you tried any extra bold Keurig Kcups? Please share your thoughts.

Where to buy:

Extra Bold Keurig Kcup coffee

5 Ways to Make to Your Keurig Brewer Last


You have taken the plunge to the wonderful world of single serve coffee by investing your hard-earned money into a Keurig brewer.  Many take this leap of faith not realizing that there is some maintenance required.  A Keurig needs a little extra love and attention that you probably have not been used to giving to your coffee brewer.  The good news is there are some very easy steps you can take to keep your new toy running smoothly and ensure a good, long life!

First meet your Keurig’s very best friends:

keurig brewer maintenance

1) Use distilled or filtered water (never spring or tap water).

This is an absolute must do.  The minerals in your tap water will build up inside your brewer over time and cause all kids of havoc.  This is the number one mistake I see people make and the number one reason for early deaths in Keurig brewers.

2) Perform periodic descaling using distilled white vinegar.

Most Keurig brewers come with a sensor that will alert you that a descaling is in order however, I would suggest you write it on you calendar to do every 8 weeks whether it is needed or not.

Descaling is so easy and the benefits are enormous, watch this step by step video to learn how:

3) Use only Keurig approved products in your brewer. 

There are more and more knock off “Kcups” available in the marketplace everyday.  These products are tempting to try for a bit of variety or perhaps a lower price but, using them will void the warranty of your Keurig brewer and assure the demise of your prized possession.  Keurig spent years researching and developing the optimal Kcup to be used properly in their brewers.  The renegades can not say the same.  I have seen knock offs that are made from instant coffee or have sugar in them- 2 sure-fire ways to kill a Keurig.

How do you know you are getting a Keurig approved product?  It is easy…just look for the seal.

keurig brewed seal

4) Purchase a commercial grade brewer.

Keurig offers 2 lines of coffee brewers, one is approved for use in homes the other is designated for commercial use.  It stands to reason that the commercial grade brewers are designed to take on the use and abuse of an office or warehouse.  Wouldn’t it make sense to bring that same quality into your home?  I sure think it does!  However, the commercial brewers can be difficult to find. Very few retailers carry them because they cater to homes.  To be sure that you are getting the highest quality brewer first, do business with a Keurig Authorized Distributor.  Distributors (such as us) generally operate online but will sometimes have a local retail shop as well.  Also, look for a model number higher than 100.  The B40, B50, B60 and B70 are all home units. The B145, B150 and B155 are all commercial units.

To make it simple… buy a B145.  This is the most economical, longest lasting brewer available.  AND it comes with a variety pack of coffee to boot!

5) Never use anything in your Keurig besides water and Kcup coffee.

This may seem silly but, you can’t imagine how many times we have heard the question:

“Can I put milk in the water reservoir of my brewer to make hot chocolate?”

The answer is heck no!

“Can I put sugar in my re-usable My Kcup?”

Absolutely not!

Let’s make this real clear, if you find yourself asking can I put _______ in my Keurig.  And the blank is filled in with anything other than coffee and water, the answer is no.

Your Keurig shows you love every morning with your favorite fresh, hot coffee ready to drink in under a minute.  Return the favor with simple care and maintenance and you will have a relationship to last a lifetime!

10 Ways Save Money on Keurig Kcup Coffee


save money on keurig kcup coffee

Let’s face it, Keurig Kcups are not the cheapest alternative to coffee drinking. I use the word cheap on purpose because I truly believe there is a difference between being cheap and spending mind fully.

Yes there are cheaper coffees available but, are you going to enjoy them? Will they be freshly brewed in under a minute with the push of a button? Will you and every member of your family be able to choose their favorite roast or flavor? Will you be able to create the perfect cup with just the right amount of coffee and water? Will there be zero mess and cleanup?

The answer to ALL of these questions is a big fat no.

If you choose to spend your money mind fully as I do, you will enjoy all of these benefits, you wont waste coffee trying to make it just right and you will have absolutely no need to run to your local coffee shop.  You will get more bang for your buck and not waste time and energy trying to make cheap coffee taste decent.

I know what you are thinking… “That’s all well and good but, I still need to save money on Keurig Kcup coffee one way or another.”

I have a few suggestions.

1) Shop the value priced Kcup coffee line.

With the growing amount of competition in the Kcup market more and more value priced Kcups are popping up.  These sorts of alternatives are always great for the consumer but, be very careful, there are several renegades out there producing garbage coffee in sub par packaging that will ruin your Keurig brewer. Case in point- Grove Square… this is instant coffee, one word…gross, three words…dont buy it.

To be sure that you are purchasing a high quality product that will work properly in your Keurig brewer (and not to mention wont void your warranty) look for the Keurig seal:

keurig seal

The value priced Keurig Kcups that we recommend are Diedrich and Twinnings. Both are reputable companies with the Keurig seal of approval.  In general these Kcups can be purchased for up to 20 percent less than other brands!

2) Use Kcup teas more than once.  Most tea drinkers use their tea bags several times.  One use simply does not take all of the flavor out of a tea bag.  The same applies to Kcup teas.  The number of uses depends on your taste preference.  I generally use my tea Kcups 2-3 times in a row filling my HUGE stainless steel thermos that I love oh so much.  This gives me enough to sip throughout the entire day using only 1 lonely little Kcup!

reuse kcup tea

3) Purchase clearance Kcups. We always have at least one Kcup on clearance. Kcups are placed on clearance for a variety of reasons ranging from stock rotation, over stocking or simply because we want to offer you a great price! It is always a good idea to stock up if your favorite flavor goes on clearance.

4) Shop sales.  We recommend sticking with one company and following their sale pattern (preferably us of course).  If you jump around you may miss you favorites and not reap the full rewards of the program.  Perhaps the most famous Kcup sale of all (at least we think so) is the Wacky Wednesday Coffee Sale. Every week we will highlight one or two K-cups at a deep discount. The unique part of this program is every single Kcup participates.  This is not a closeout sale or a stock rotation.  You are guaranteed to see your choice of Kcup in the lineup.

In addition to the Wacky Wednesday sale we host a weekend discount as well.  Again, every Kcup will make an appearance at one time or another giving you yet another opportunity to stock up.

5) Consider shipping. Yes, shopping online is ultra convenient and for many (including me) the preferred method.  I avoid going to stores as much as possible. Not only do I avoid the hassle and save time, I think that simply not setting foot in the store saves me money by avoiding impulse purchases.

When it comes to Kcup coffees retail is ALWAYS going to be priced higher than ordering online unless, there is a special sale or coupon and even then you will usually pay more.  But, who wants to pay a fortune for shipping?  Not me, that’s for darn sure.

Look for companies that offer flat rate shipping or free shipping on a certain order size.

6) Price Kcups per cup not by the box.  You may have noticed that Kcups are available in a variety of box sizes ranging from 12 Kcups all the way up to 24. This can make price comparison tricky.  For example, most shoppers seem to believe that Walmart or Target have fairly low pricing on Kcup coffees. That seems to be true at first glance until you notice that their boxes only have 18 Kcups in them.  Always, always, always buy a box of 24 to ensure that you are getting the best price per cup.

24 kcups per box

7) Use price guarantees. Few companies are brave enough to promise to beat any and all competitor pricing but, there are a couple that have stepped up to the plate (we are one of them).  Always deal with a company that offers a best price guarantee, take the guess-work out of shopping Kcups, get the lowest price currently available, period.

8) Participate in giveaways.  First and foremost you can find several Kcup contest and giveaways on Facebook. We alone have given away thousands of Kcups through our Saturday trivia contest.  Participants are eligible to win a 30 ct variety pack of Kcup coffees every Saturday by simple answering a trivia question related to coffee.

In addition to Facebook did you know that there are several popular blogs and comparison shopping sites that host Kcup giveaways?  These are a little bit more difficult to find but, dont worry we will find them for you! We are constantly scouring the internet looking for legitimate opportunities for you to win free Kcups.  We will share them with you every week via our social media outlets such as Twitter and Pinterest.

9) Ask for samples.  Dont be shy.

10) Find out what offers are available from your favorite Kcup distributor. For example- if you sign up for notifications from us we send you a coupon to be used on your next Kcup purchase. If you havent already done that, why not? Save a little money and be informed.

I want to help you to save money on Keurig Kcups but I want to remind you that coffee is one of lives simple pleasures. Enjoy it.  Spend mind fully on something that you truly love.

Our favorite products:

Thermos Stainless King 40-Ounce Beverage Bottle, Midnight Blue

How to Store Keurig Kcups


It is very important to clean and maintain your Keurig brewer on a regular basis.  This will prolong the life of your unit and supply you with the best tasting Kcup coffee day after day (or hour after hour if you are anything like me!).  How do you choose the right Kcup and brew it properly?  Are Kcups Kosher? Are Organic Kcups available? Each week we will be educating you on best practices for Keurig brewer care and Kcup brewing.

This weeks installment of Keurig 101  is…How do I store my Keurig Kcups?

You have received your treasured Kcups (ordered from crosscountrycafe.com of course!),  now what?  How do you keep them as fresh as possible, for as long as possible? As always Keurig has made this easy for us…you really dont need to worry.

Each Kcup is flushed with nitrogen,  then vacuum sealed blocking out all light and moisture.  I have visited Green Mountain Coffee in Vermont and have seen first hand that this process takes place as soon as the coffee is in the Kcup.  The foil lid is immediately adhered to the plastic cup and viola… we have a package with perfectly fresh coffee sealed inside.

There is a fresh by date printed on the side of every Kcup.  This is not an expiration date it is simply a best if used by guideline.  The contents will never be exposed to moisture or air leaving it virtually impossible for the coffee to spoil.  However,  being the perfectionists that they are,  Keurig and Green Mountain want their coffee to be enjoyed only at the peak of freshness.  If you store the Kcup for a very, very long time,  it will lose its wonderful coffee taste.  It will be flat and bland but,  by no means spoiled.

Keurig has solved all storage issues for us except temperature.  We recommend Kcups to be stored at or slightly below room temperature. There are some who choose to refrigerate their coffee.  We have found so many mixed opinions on that subject that we cant possibly endorse it.  I think that everyone would agree however, that storing coffee in a warm environment is a bad idea and may affect the taste.

Keurig is all about convenience.  Having you Kcups tucked away in a cupboard doesn’t lend itself to accessibility.  There are so many clever counter carousels, storage drawers and racks that put just the right amount go Kcups at your fingertips.  We thought we would share a few of our favorites.

First, the Lazy Susan Kcup Carousel is probably the most popular.  It is simple and looks sharp.  This system holds 27 Kcups and features a chrome finish.

Our second Kcup storage option is the Lazy Susan Tower. This unit efficiently stores 30 Kcups utilizing vertical space and taking up very little of your counter.

The third option is my favorite. The K Cupboard.  It is an original design by an artisan we meant in Michigan.  It is functional and incredibly attractive. On top of that, the K Cupboard is versatile.  You can set it against you backsplash horizontally, mount it on a wall or on a cabinet.  This unit holds a whopping 48 Kcups!

There are also various storage drawers which are great because they sit under your Keurig,  nicely tucked out of the way.

 

There is under the cabinet storage:

Baskets:

And last but not least spice racks converted to Kcup racks:

I suspect that there will be more and more original ideas for Kcup storage. Find us on Pinterest for some other artistic storage ideas we have come across or share your ideas here!