So you’re looking for a single-serve coffee maker that uses pods and has a milk frother? Lucky for you, this is a popular kind of a coffee maker that’s available from many brands, which is great because you get to choose from different options.
Before we get started, let’s talk about what you can do with such a coffee machine…
What You Can Do With a Pod Coffee Maker with Milk Frother
‘Pod Coffee Maker’ is also known as a single-serve coffee maker. So it makes one cup of coffee at a time. The exact drinks you can make will depend on the model you choose eventually, but generally, most of these coffee makers can make:
Espresso – Lungo (longer espresso) – Any milk based coffee drink such as Cappuccino, Latte, Macchiato and so on…
Having a milk frother means that the machine will automatically heat and froth the milk for you. Some also make cold froth for iced coffee drinks.
What To Look For Before Buying a Pod Coffee Maker
There are a few things to keep in mind before picking a pod coffee maker:
Pod Compatibility: Each single-serve coffee maker has its own type of pod and once you select a machine, you’re committed to those pods. For example, Only Nespresso Pods work on Nespresso machines, and only K-Cup pods work on a Keurig machine.
However, you can find pods from third party brands, that goes for Keurig or Nespresso OriginalLine machines. So while you are committed to a ‘type of pod’, there are different brands to choose from. However, if you opt for a Nespresso Vertuo machine for example, then you’re confined to Nespresso pods only.
Pod Availability: Once you know the type of pod you’ll need, it’s time to check for their availability. If you are going to buy your pods online, then no problem there. You’ll find most pods available in major websites like Amazon, Target or from their own brand’s websites. If you want to buy your pods in-store, then you’ll have to check if there are available in stores near you.
Best Pod Coffee Makers with Built-in Milk Frothers
- COFFEE, LATTES & CAPPUCCINOS: Use any K-Cup pod to brew coffee, or make delicious lattes and cappuccinos.
- SIMPLE BUTTON CONTROLS: Just insert any K-Cup pod and use the button controls to brew delicious coffee, or make hot or iced lattes and cappuccinos.
- LARGE 60oz WATER RESERVOIR: Allows you to brew 6 cups before having to refill, saving you time and simplifying your morning routine. Removable reservoir makes refilling easy.
- SMART START: Your coffee maker heats, then brews in one simple process. No need to wait for it to heat before selecting your cup size.
- ENERGY EFFICIENT: Programmable auto off feature automatically turns your brewer off 2 hours after the last brew for energy savings.
Keurig is quite a popular coffee maker and its popularity comes from the fact that its pods are available from major coffee brands like Green Mountain, Dunkin’s, Starbucks, Tully’s and many many more. It also makes a lot more than just coffee, you can use it to make hot chocolate, tea, hot apple cider and other hot beverages.
With the K-Cafe, Keurig took its machine a step forward by adding a milk frother to it, allowing you to make lattes and such using fresh milk that’s automatically heated and frothed.
Using the K-Cafe, you can make coffee in several brewing sizes (6, 8, 10, and 12 oz). Or you can select the Shot option, which will make you a 2 oz coffee concentrate that is close enough to an espresso shot to use as your milk drink’s base.
The milk frother, which is induction based, can make hot or cold froth. You can select from Latte, which makes lighter froth, or Cappuccino which makes a denser froth, or select the Cold option if you’re making an iced coffee. The milk jug is dishwasher safe and can be fully submerged in water. It’s also fully stainless steel, so you don’t have to worry about nonstick coat peeling over time.
Pod Compatibility: All K-Cup pods, including refillable pods.
Pros of Keurig K-Cafe
- Pods available widely online or in major supermarkets from over 75 brands.
- You can make any coffee or non-coffee beverage available as a K-Cup pod. You are not restricted to coffee drinks.
- You can use refillable K-Cup pods.
Cons of Keurig K-Cafe
- It does not make real espresso. Instead, it makes a short coffee concentrate that is similar to espresso.
Keurig K-Cafe vs. K-Cafe Special Edition, Is There a Difference?
The difference is in the color and some design details. The Special Edition features metal handle and drip tray nickel colored finish.
- Special edition: Complement your kitchen with the premium nickel colored finish, metal handle and drip tray
- 4 cup sizes: 6, 8, 10, and 12 ounce
- Simple button controls: Just insert any k cup pod and use the button controls to brew delicious coffee, or make hot or iced lattes and cappuccinos.120v
- Large 60 ounce water reservoir: Allows you to brew 6 cups before having to refill, saving you time and simplifying your morning routine; Removable reservoir makes refilling easy
- Smart start: Your coffee maker heats, then brews in one simple process; No need to wait for it to heat before selecting your cup size
- The perfect creamy latte: one button and one capsule - that's all it takes to enjoy a barista-style latte in seconds. Only by de'longhi
- 6 one-touch recipes: simple one-touch button for Coffee and milk lovers to prepare creamy latte, latte macchiato, cappuccino, Warm milk, perfect Espresso or Coffee
- Made in Italy: the lattissima touch's sleek Italian craftsmanship looks fantastic in any kitchen
- Advanced milk frother by de'longhi: an automatic frother creates rich, long-lasting, creamy foam
- Practical design: sliding drip tray for different cup or glass sizes, removable milk container with rinsing function, illuminated buttons. Input power (W): 1400
The Lattissima is one of Nespresso’s most popular picks for a machine with built-in milk frother. It is an OriginalLine machine, which means it is compatible with pods from Nespresso as well as from third party brands.
Unlike Keurig’s K-Cafe, the Lattissima Touch makes real shot of espresso using a 19-bar pressure pump. On the control panel of the machine, you’ll find presets for espresso, lungo, cappuccino, latte, macchiato or hot milk. It does not make coffee, but you can make an Americano, which is a shot of espresso mixed with hot water.
The built-in milk frother has a dial that allows you to adjust the froth density. It is also detachable, which it great for two things: you can detach it and store any left over milk in the fridge for later use, and you can take it apart and put it in the dishwasher.
When you receive your Nespresso Lattissima (or any Nespresso machine) you’ll find a pack of sample pods included. So you can try a few of their selections to find your favorite pod.
Pros of Nespresso Lattissima Touch
- Simple push-button operation.
- Being an OriginalLine machine, it means you can go for Nespresso pods or pods from other brands.
- Fully automatic frothing and milk dispensing. The machine will dispense as much milk as your recipe needs, taking the guess work out of your preparation and giving you great results each time.
Cons of Lattissima Touch
- The milk frother can be a bit of a hassle to dissemble for thorough cleaning.
What Is the Difference Between Lattissima Models?
Perhaps you’ve noticed that there are many Lattissima models available. We have a full post comparing all of these models that you can read here.
- SINGLE SERVE COFFEE AND ESPRESSO MACHINE: The Nespresso Creatista Plus offers freshly brewed coffee as well as delicious authentic espresso. The Creatista plus can turn into your personal latte maker with the attached milk frother, allowing you to create top quality latte art in your kitchen. Pour over ice to create your favorite iced coffee drinks.
- BARISTA GRADE: Brew different single serve coffee and espresso beverage options at the touch of a button depending on your coffee needs - Ristretto (0.5 oz.), Espresso (1.35 oz.), Lungo (5 oz.). The Creatista allows you to take a step further and create more complex coffee drinks such as flat whites, cappuccinos, and latte macchiatos. There are settings that allow you to adjust coffee volume, milk temperature and mixture with a fast 3 second heat up time.
- SMART COFFEE AND ESPRESSO MAKER: Brew a perfect single serve coffee or espresso cup time after time with an easy TFT LCD display that assists you on all preparation, setting and maintenance aspects thanks to a high resolution display.
- Automatic built-in milk frother helps you create your favorite single serve coffee and espresso beverages. COMPLIMENTARY GIFT: Includes a complimentary starter set of Nespresso capsules (capsule assortment may vary from picture)
- FEATURES AND WARRANTY: Nespresso Creatista Plus includes a 1.5L removable water tank, an auto-purge steam wand, 19 bars of pressure, a fast automatic cleaning process, a stainless milk jug and a 2 year warranty. Heats up in less than 3 seconds with an automatic off mode after 9 minutes.
This machine by Breville is quite a step-up from most single-serve espresso machines. While it is made by Breville, it is powered by Nespresso and it’s compatible with OriginalLine capsules.
The Creatista Plus is close enough to commercial-style espresso machines, but it has a few options to customize your coffee creation and it automates the process so you’ll never mess up.
One of the things that makes the Creatista Plus special is the fact that it has an actual steam wand, similar to those in traditional espresso makers. You can make creamy micro foam that will allow you to do real latte art (you’ll need a lot of practice, though!). Texturing milk is one of the hardest things to master for a new espresso machine user, this is why Breville has automated this step. From the machine’s menu, you can select from 11 temperatures and 8 milk textures, and the steam wand will do the rest. You can also choose from 8 beverage recipes that are all customizable to your liking, you can change the coffee volume, temperature and milk texture and save your customized settings.
On the top of the machine, you’ll find a handy colored LCD display that will help guide you through the process of making your beverage.
Pod Compatibility: compatible with all Nespresso OriginalLine capsules.
Pros of Breville Creatista Plus
- Very high quality machine – Whether we’re talking about the machine itself or the beverages it makes.
- Steam wand gives you professional textured milk that you can make latte art with.
- Automatic but also customizable.
Cons of Breville Creatista Plus
- Price tag is quite expensive in comparison to other single-serve machines. But you also get features and advancements not available in other machines.
Does the Creatista Plus Make Regular Coffee?
No, it does not. You can make espresso and espresso based drinks. Amerciano would be the alternative here.
Difference Between Creatista and Creatista Plus:
Creatista is Creatista Plus’s little sibling and it can be a good option if you want to save a bit of money and wouldn’t mind losing a few customization selections…
- Creatista has 4 milk texture levels instead of 8, and it has 5 milk temperature selections instead of 11.
- It still has the same 8 beverages programmed.
- Creatista has 50 oz water reservoir while the Plus model has 60 oz.
- The housing on the Creatista is mostly plastic but has some stainless steel features. While the Plus model is fully stainless steel.
What about Creatista Uno?
Uno has even less features, first, the LCD display is replaced with buttons instead. For customization, it has 3 texture levels and 3 temperature settings. You cannot save recipes in this model.