Does a Nespresso Machine Make Regular Coffee?

April 17, 2020

Does a Nespresso machine make regular coffee? Let us see! Nespresso is a sub-brand of the Nestle Group in Switzerland. Nestle has dominated the capsule-based coffee market since its inception in 1986. It is an excellent coffee brand with many amazing pod-based espresso machines. Nespresso’s history is a long and winding road to innovation and product development. Here’s an outline of how Nespresso became a dominant and loved coffee brand:

5 Phases of Nespresso Growth and Innovation

1986-1994 (Pioneering Years)

  1. Creation of Nespresso with 5 Employees (first machine and 4 Grand Cru).
  2. Introduction of Nespresso club concept.
  3. Introduction of recycling in Switzerland.

1995-1999 (Start-up Phase)

  1. Introduction of the first Nespresso Aviation machine.
  2. Introduction of the first Nespresso Website.
  3. Introduction of the first E-commerce platform of Nespresso.

2000-2005 (Creating a Global Brand)

  1. The First Nespresso boutique opens in Paris.
  2. Launching of the first Nespresso AAA Quality Program.

2006-2012 (Shaping the global coffee culture)

  1. First campaign with George Clooney.
  2. Opening of Nespresso 2nd Production center in Avenches.
  3. The recycling capacity of capsules increased by 76.4%.

2013-Present

  1. Launching the Vertuoline system.
  2. First Nespresso Cafe opens in Vienna.
  3. Nespresso Dominates the pod-based Coffee Industry From 2015-2019

What is a Regular Coffee?

Let us first learn what a “Regular Coffee” is. Regular coffee might have variations depending on the country you live in. Generally speaking, a regular cup of coffee is an espresso shot with two cubes of sugar and added cream or milk. Now that we know what a regular coffee is, let’s learn how to make it with a Nespresso machine and pods. 

Making a Regular Cup of Coffee with Nespresso

Yes, you can make a regular cup of coffee with Nespresso. While there are other recipes, we recommend using a Lungo Nespresso capsule to make a cup of regular coffee. You will need your Nespresso machine with a milk frother or a Nespresso machine with a milk frother extension. Here are the steps:

  1. Turn on your Nespresso machine 
    (Duh! This is like the first question your IT guy asks when you phone for support)
  2. Take one Lungo Pod/Cartridge and put it in the Nespresso machine
  3. Close the lid.
  4. Press the Coffee Button
  5. The coffee will now be extracted to your cup.
  6. We now have a large espresso ( Lungo = Large Espresso)
  7. Next, froth your milk in the milk frother
  8. Add the frothed milk to your Lungo Espresso cup
  9. Add a couple of sugar cubes to your coffee

The above will produce a coffee that will be amazing at aroma and taste. Not only this is way easier than, say, grinding your own beans and then filtering to make espresso, but you also get a more consistent and better taste. 

Is Nespresso Real Coffee?

What is “Real” coffee? You grind your beans to the right granularity, tamp it with just the proper amount of pressure, and have just the proper amount of steam/water pressure and you can (probably) make better coffee than a Nespresso machine. 

If you know what you are doing. 

But that’s not a simple process to consistently make amazing coffee.

Answering the question, yes, Nespresso is real coffee, it has just made it easier to make good tasting coffee with a capsule that you can use to make coffee in your Nespresso machines at home or your office. 

Most of the time attempts to brew your own espresso without training or top-notch equipment will simply cause grief. In contrast, Nespresso pods provide a reasonably dependable baseline of quality that’s credible and has a wide range of flavors!

Here is a list of things that could go wrong when you brew your own coffee, the classic way, vs a Nespresso Machine:

High-Quality EspressoNespresso
Freshly Roasted and Ground Beans Pods that contain ground coffee that preserve taste and aroma
Right Amount of WaterNespresso does it for you
Right Short DurationNespresso does it for you
Right TemperatureNespresso does it for you

What are the Benefits of a Nespresso Machine?

Traditional coffee or espresso gives you two choices to choose among three qualities: Great taste, Simplicity, and Low cost, but Nespresso has all three.

Nespresso machines come with the “Ready to Use” pods or capsules, which are designed with simplicity, reusability, and ease of use in mind.

If you are establishing a traditional espresso bar set up in your kitchen, you need to own a lot of equipment like tampers, grinders, knock box, a milk frother, steaming pitcher, and traditional espresso machine. While with your Nespresso machine you will get a full cafeteria’s experience with only one small appliance.

If you visit the cafeteria for your daily coffee fix, it’s a bit expensive to drive in traffic, stand in line, and waste time and money. With the Nespresso machine, you can cut the cost and enjoy your regular coffee any time at your home or office.

Nespresso machines use “Centrifusion Technology” which spins the ground coffee in the pod at high speeds for filtering the coffee.

Requirements of Brewed Coffee vs Nespresso

When you brew coffee then you first need to grind coffee beans. Often you don’t use all of the coffee beans or the left-over coffee grinds, so you need to store them somehow. 
 
The problem is that, unlike Nespresso coffee pods, ground coffee loses its aroma and intensity within 24 hours.  The less the contact with oxygen, sunlight and moisture, the better the coffee tastes and for a longer period of time.
 
Some companies seal their ground coffee in zip-lock packets which ensure minimum contact with oxygen or store their coffee in commercial sized canisters to prevent the decline in taste and aroma.

How Long Before Coffee Loses its Aroma and Taste?

Types of CoffeeBest to use
Instant CoffeeBest to use it within 2 weeks of opening
Ground CoffeeBest to use it within 2 weeks of opening
Brewed CoffeeBest to use it within 12 hours if it is stored at room temperature or if it is stored in a refrigerator you can use it for 4 days.
Whole beansBest to use it within 3 to 4 weeks

How Does Nespresso Keep Their Coffee Fresh? 

Nespresso utilize air-tight aluminum capsules (100% recyclable), these capsules provide pressurized seals to store more than 900 aromas of freshly ground coffee for up to 1 year.

“Nespresso” vs “Freshly Brewed” Coffee

Freshly brewed coffee has been popular since the ‘70s. Nespresso is the advanced technique of brewing Coffee.

The obvious difference is time. In a Nespresso, you just have to have to insert pods and run the machine and get your coffee. But in standard/commercial freshly brewed coffee (especially freshly brewed drip coffee) you need fresh beans and a filter for brewing your coffee. 

In freshly brewed coffee you have the freedom to control the taste of the coffee because there are many variables at play. Nespresso provides pre-made taste pods in a variety of flavors that cut the time required to make good coffee.

The other potential difference is the taste. Generally speaking, Nespresso coffee has a milder taste compared to a coffee brewed using other commercial coffee brewing equipment.

Some people prefer Nespresso over freshly brewed one, as it takes less time, is an easier way of making coffee, and has great taste. 

Manufacturing Nespresso Pods

For making Nestle Grand Crue Blends, Nespresso coffee experts always go with the finest beans with a particular aroma and taste, depending on the flavor of pods being manufactured.

The Grinding Process

The process of grinding the Nespresso is similar to other ground coffee brands. And grinding of coffee is an art, which subtly plays a major role. The granularity of the coffee grids plays a major role in the flavour and so does the roasting process.

Here is a simple process of how grinding of coffee works:-

  1. First, grind the roasted beans into a powder.

  1. After roasting, it is transferred into the airtight silo, as grinding increases the surface area of coffee in contact with oxygen it tends to lose the aroma quickly and thus it is carried out in a deoxygenated environment.

  1. If coffee particles are on the larger side, water passes through them too quickly, which means you will not get the full complexity of flavors. Whereas if the particles are overly fine, water will be blocked, thus your coffee will be bitter and harsh. And if the particle size isn’t consistent, you may end up with too much sediment in your cup. 

Packaging

The grounded coffee from the silos is packaged into airtight and coloured Nespresso pods. Nespresso Hermetically sealed capsules are made of Aluminium. There are large varieties of coffee flavors available and these pods are made of Aluminium so they can be recycled easily. The plastics used in the packaging is biodegradable and is environment-friendly.

Nespresso Coffee Flavours

*Intensity rated from 1-12, where 1 is lowest, 12 is the highest

RISTRETTORistretto Intenso
Intensity-12Size of cup-25 MLAromatic-Woody, Spicy
Ristretto Origin India
Intensity-10Size of cup-25 MLAromatic-Spicy
Ristretto
Intensity-9Size of cup-25 MLAromatic-Cocoa
ESPRESSOEspresso Origin Brazil
Intensity-4Size of cup-40 MLAromatic- Sweet Cereal
Espresso Leggero
Intensity-6Size of cup-40 MLAromatic- Cocoa,Cereal
Espresso Forte
Intensity-7Size of Cup-40 MLAromatic- Fruity, Intensely Roasted
LUNGOLungo Forte
Intensity-4Size of cup-110 MLAromatic- Fruity, Roasted
Guatemala
Intensity-6Size of cup-110 MLAromatic-Malt Vans classic Cereal
Lungo Forte
Intensity-2Size of cup-110 MLAromatic- Jasmine, Floral
DECAFFEINATOLungo Decaffeinato
Intensity-4Size of cup-110 MlAromatic- Toasted Cereal, Sweet Floral
Espresso Decaffeinato
Intensity- 7Size of cup- 40 MLAromatic- Roasted Cocoa, Cereal
 
VARIATIONEspresso Caramel
Intensity- 7Size of cup- 40 MLAromatic- Caramel
Espresso Vanilla
Intensity- 7Size of cup- 40 MLAromatic- Vanilla
 

Can I use my own coffee with Nespresso?

Sure. Just search the online for “Refillable Nespresso Capsules” and order a sample to test. Although we would recommend you stick with the standard offerings from Nespresso because they have perfected the pods over the years for a wide variety of tastes and flavors. Let’s have a look at them.

Four of The Best Nespresso Reusable Capsules

OK, so you if you prefer to use your own coffee grinds then here are four of the best reusable capsules.

  1. Cafilas stainless steel reusable capsules 
  2. Bluesea Coffee Capsule
  3. CAPMESSO Reusable Nespresso Capsules
  4. Sealpod – Stainless-Steel

Effects of Coffee Pods on Environment

Dr. Andrea Hicks, Professor of the (Civil and Environmental Engineering Department) UW-Madison, did research on the environmental impact of coffee technologies. Dr Hicks’s research looked at the impact of both traditional brewing and coffee pods on the environment. 

Dr Hicks’s 2018 research suggested that pod style coffee may be the more environmentally friendly compared with traditional coffee brewing methods. 

However, Dr Hicks also later showed (2019 research) that the complete analysis of environmental impact between these two brewing methods depends upon the criteria used in the analysis.  

How Nespresso Helps The Environment 

Nespresso is active in both coffee sustainability and recycling coffee pods
You can recycle your used coffee pods at any of the 88,000 UPS recycling depots or any Nespresso Boutique. 

Nespresso coffee pods are made from aluminum and can be recycled and used to produce other products such as a bicycle. Yes, a bicycle! Nespresso and Vélosophy (Swedish bike manufacturer) got together to make a bike from 300 recycled coffee capsules. OK, they didn’t make the tyres out of aluminum but major components of the bike (e.g. frame) were made from recycled Nespresso Pod aluminum.

nespresso velosophy bike
Velosophy bike made from recycled Nespresso Coffee Pods

The ground coffee from the pods is used as fertilizer and topsoil for farms. As you can see all of the coffee pod is recycled into useful materials and avoids landfill.

The following video by Nespresso gives a little more insight into their recycling program. 

Best Selling Nespresso Machines

The following are five of the best selling Nespresso machines that are also currently on sale!

SALE!Bestseller No. 1
Nespresso by De'Longhi EN80B Original Espresso Machine by De'Longhi, 12.6 x 4.7 x 9 Inches, Black
1,735 Reviews
Nespresso by De'Longhi EN80B Original Espresso Machine by De'Longhi, 12.6 x 4.7 x 9 Inches, Black
  • Barista grade: Nespresso Inissia by De'Longhi...
  • Speed: In just one touch, ideal water temperature...
  • Versatile and smart coffee machine: Adjustable cup...
  • Energy efficient coffee machine: Brew two...
  • Complimentary gift: Each espresso machine includes...
SALE!Bestseller No. 2
Nespresso Inissia Original Espresso Machine by Breville, Titan
2,851 Reviews
Nespresso Inissia Original Espresso Machine by Breville, Titan
  • BARISTA GRADE: Nespresso Inissia by Breville...
  • FAST: Eliminate the wait time with how fast the...
  • EFFICIENT COFFEE MACHINE: Brew two different cup...
  • SMART COFFEE MAKER: Adjustable cup size with two...
  • COMPLIMENTARY GIFT: Each machine includes a...
SALE!Bestseller No. 3
Nespresso by De'Longhi Nespresso Essenza Mini Espresso Machine, Black
563 Reviews
Nespresso by De'Longhi Nespresso Essenza Mini Espresso Machine, Black
  • Performance: Create a barista-style coffee or...
  • Size: Discover the newest and smallest ever...
  • Energy efficient coffee machine: In just one...
  • Complimentary gift: Each espresso machine includes...
  • Versatility: Adjustable cup size with two...
SALE!Bestseller No. 4
Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine by Breville with Aeroccino, Chrome
2,842 Reviews
Nespresso Vertuo Coffee and Espresso Machine by Breville with Aeroccino, Chrome
  • SIMPLE, ONE TOUCH ESPRESSO MACHINE: Create...
  • ONE ESPRESSO MACHINE, FIVE CUP SIZES: One...
  • NESPRESSO MACHINE TECHONOLOGY: Vertuo coffee...
  • NESPRESSO VERTUO BY BREVILLE: Vertuo uses an...
  • ULTIMATE COFFEE QUALITY: Nespresso follows highly...
SALE!Bestseller No. 5
– Breville-Nespresso USA BEC220BLK1AUC1 Nespresso Essenza Mini Espresso Machine with Complimentary Capsules, Piano Black
1,442 Reviews
– Breville-Nespresso USA BEC220BLK1AUC1 Nespresso Essenza Mini Espresso Machine with Complimentary Capsules, Piano Black
  • SIZE: Discover the newest and smallest ever single...
  • PERFORMANCE: Create a barista-style coffee or...
  • EFFICIENT COFFEE MACHINE: In just one touch, the...
  • VERSATILITY: Adjustable cup size with two...
  • COMPLIMENTARY GIFT: Each machine includes a...

Last update on 2020-07-06 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Conclusion

Nespresso is capable of making regular coffee, and a large number of other coffee types. The more you explore the different types of pods and recipes, the better you get at Nespressing!

References

  1. Hicks, A. L. (2018). Environmental Implications of consumer convenience: coffee as a case study. Journal of Industrial Ecology, 22(1), 79-91. https://doi.org/10.1111/jiec.12487
  2. Hicks, A. L., & Halvorsen, H. (2019). Environmental impact of evolving coffee technologies. The International Journal of Life Cycle Assessment, 24(8), 1396-1408. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11367-018-1575-0
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