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3 things to consider when buying coffee for your reusable coffee pods

So, you've made the switch to reusable pods (we're so glad you've joined the reusable coffee capsule movement!) and now you're ready to head to your local cafe to source some great quality, freshly ground coffee to brew in your capsules. You know that the taste of your brew is only going to be as good as the coffee you put in your pod, however you're not quite sure where to start when it comes to purchasing for reusables, right? Not to worry, we've got your back - we've compiled some simple tips on getting your hands on some glorious grinds for brewing at home. 

Buying ground coffee / beans for filling reusable / refillable pods & capsules

1. GRIND SIZE

Selecting the correct grind size for your capsule will ensure that you extract the perfect amount of flavour from your coffee. A well-extracted cup of coffee should be balanced in flavour. When you mix coffee and water, a lot of things happen - different flavour compounds extract at different rates. During extraction, water is actively dissolving a lot of coffee’s flavours - sharper, acidic, fruity flavours emerge first, followed by the deep, complex, heavier ones. Towards the end of the extraction, deep, heavier, bitter flavours transpire. Ideally you're looking to attain a balanced brew of deliciousness with clarity of flavour (avoiding both over and under-extraction.) Selecting the correct grind size ensures that water flows through your capsule at the desired rate, extracting the very best components from your coffee blend.

Grind size also affects how reusable capsules perform - too fine, and the hot water won't get through (essentially blocking up the capsule), too coarse, and it will gush through (resulting in a watery coffee). Essentially, a fine grind works best for reusable pods - this means that the water has to work a little harder to get through that ground coffee, creating strong, fuller bodied espresso and a beautiful extraction. Whereas a coarser grind tends to produce gentler flavours and a lighter colour crema.

For the majority of our reusable pods, we recommend a medium-fine grind for optimal results. Grinder settings do tend to differ from cafe to cafe, so it might take a little time and experimentation to determine the ideal grind size for your capsules. 

Alternatively, you might want to take some of our Bespoke Stovetop Coffee (roasted right here in Melbourne, and crafted specifically for capsule use) into your local cafe or roastery, and ask them to replicate the grind size.

2. ROAST/BLEND

Pre-filled coffee capsules can contain added flavour enhancers (such as dehydrated powders or concentrates) to give the illusion of a "stronger" coffee. Whereas fresh coffee is bursting with rich fruity flavours, complex spice notes and sweet aromas. Don't let "intensity" or strong acidic flavours fool you - to put it simply, fresh is best when it comes to a lovely balanced flavour! 
To achieve a stronger tasting brew with reusables, we recommend a dark roast, or Italian-style roast for optimal results. Sourcing a a dark roast blend will help you produce a fuller-bodied, bolder, richer coffee, along with a lovely thick and dark crema from your capsules. Head to your local roaster or cafe to chat about their available blends.

Ground coffee for refillable coffee capsules

3. OIL/MOISTURE CONTENT

Roasting conditions significantly affect the properties of coffee, and in turn, can also influence how the grounds perform when brewed in reusable capsules. Dark roasts are heated for the longest time, and to the highest temperature, so are typically oilier in nature and can require a little time to settle upon roasting.
If beans have been over-roasted, they tend to contain a detrimentally high oil content that binds grounds together, and can consequently cause blockages in reusable capsules. If you experience this with your favourite coffee brand, we suggest chatting to your local roaster about this occurrence or experiment with switching to a medium roast. 

Filling DIY coffee capsules with freshly ground coffee

 

Now, you're all set to get out there and start trying different blends! And remember to always store your beautiful fresh coffee grounds in a sealed bag or airtight container to keep them from being exposed to oxygen and becoming stale. Happy coffee shopping!

Looking for a more comprehensive guide on grind size and coffee pods? Head here.



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  • Crema Joe

    Hey Dawn, great question! Our compostable Paper Lids are best for brewing tea. Our recyclable Espresso Lids are designed for specifically for use with coffee – they create that really lovely pressure build-up behind the lid, producing the crema that SealPod is famous for :) Please don’t hesitate to reach out if we can assist with your brew! Kayla

  • Dawn CLavin

    I have your stainless steel reusable pods and really want to keep using them but currently my coffee is coming out weak. This seems to be regardless of which coffee I have used to fill the pods. I recently had some paper pod lids mailed and am wondering if they are the problem as I didn’t notice the weakness when using the foil lids? What do you think? I have a Nespresso machine and have run the descaler through but it didn’t help.


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