Can You Use Nespresso Pods Twice? Yes, But It Will Probably Taste Bad

Mike C
Written By Mike C

I've been writing about coffee and espresso machines for 3 years. My goal is to provide you with helpful content that you can trust based on my own personal experiences, information from manufacturers, and tips and tricks I've gathered from other coffee and espresso machine users.

I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post.

Should You Use Nespresso Pods Twice?

Nespresso machines are great, but using one regularly certainly isn’t cheap. Depending on whether you have an Original or a Vertuo model, a single pod can cost anywhere from 80 cents to $1.20. If you are trying to get a lot of use out of your machine without breaking the bank, you may be wondering if you can use Nespresso pods twice. Technically there is nothing stopping you, but you may not want to. Keep reading to learn more.

Will Nespresso Machines Let You Brew A Pod Twice?

If you’ve learned how to use your Nespresso machine, you know that there is nothing stopping you from brewing a pod again just after you’ve used it once. The Original models don’t have any sensors to detect whether there is even a pod in the chamber. And for Vertuo models, it will brew a pod as long as it can read the barcode on the underside of the pod. Regardless of what machine you have then, you can just hit the brew button again.

Why You Should Not Use Nespresso Pods Twice

That said, just because you technically can brew a pod twice, doesn’t mean you should. Nespresso pods are made to be used only once. When you run a pod through a second brew cycle, a few things might happen. First, you might end up with a coffee tastes bitter or burnt because the grinds will end up being over-extracted the second time. Secondly, your coffee or espresso will probably taste watered down. Since some water has already passed through the pod, some of the pods original coffee content has dissolved. So less coffee in the pod, means your cup of coffee will taste watered down and weak, not strong. You may have a little more luck with more intense pods. However, it still could be more like brown water than coffee (though probably darker than what comes out during a cleaning cycle).

How To Save Money On Pods

I strongly recommend using pods once and using official Nespresso pods or those made by Starbucks. Doing otherwise may void your warranty. However, if you need to scale back your purchases, there’s a better way to save money and enjoy your drink.

For the Original line, you can find third party capsules that are usually cheaper than Nespresso branded pods. Technically the only official partner is Starbucks. However, since there is not a patent for the Original pods like there is for Vertuo pods, lots of other brands have started to make their own. You’ll even see some retailer private brands, like at Target and Trader Joes, that make their own pods.

If you have a Vertuo, there are only Starbucks pods and those are more expensive. I would be cautious about buying any reusable steel pod out there that claims to work with Vertuo models. That’s because the machine has to be able to read the barcode on a pod. The machine needs this to know how much water to use to brew. This is proprietary to Nespresso until the patent expires in 2030. Instead, here is a workaround with your existing pods that some people use. Take a used Nespresso pod, remove the foil seal and discard the grounds. Then you can add your own coffee grinds and reseal the pod. You’ll want to use this special aluminum foil lid made by Capmesso.

lids to reuse nespresso vertuo pods

I would suggest using the same kind of beans and grinds that match the type of pod you are using. For example, if you emptied a coffee Vertuo pod, fill it with coffee grinds. If filling a single or double espresso pod, you’ll want to use grinds appropriate for espresso. Those will typically be darker and have a finer grind.

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