Nespresso machines create amazing cafe-quality espresso drinks at home, but buying all of those capsules can get expensive, and options are limited.
What if you could refill a Nespresso capsule with your own coffee, at home?
In this article, we’ll take a look at the best reusable Nespresso capsules, for both the OriginalLine and VertuoLine machines.
Why Listen To Us? Well, because we KNOW coffee! In fact, we make our own coffee, coffee machine cleaners, and reusable capsules which we've sold to over 41 countries. Our team ouf experts include Tristan (an engineer), Claire (a food writer) and Richy (a barista). So, whether you're looking for a recipe or repair guide, we've got you covered 💚
Table of Contents
What Are Reusable Nespresso Capsules?
Normally, Nespresso capsules are disposable. You are supposed to use them and throw them away afterward.
However, this isn’t great for your budget or the environment.
Reusable Nespresso capsules are made of stainless steel or other durable materials rather than cheap plastic. They do the same job that disposable Nespresso pods do, except that you add the ground coffee to the pods yourself, and clean them out afterward.
This allows you to use the same pod many times.
Why Are Reusable Nespresso Pods Such a Good Idea?
Switching to reusable Nespresso pods can save you a lot of money, and give you more control over the coffee you drink.
Nespresso capsules are not the cheapest way to drink coffee, even if you use the third-party capsules rather than the official Nespresso branded ones. However, the cost is considerably decreased if you buy cheaper ground coffee and fill the pods yourself.
Plus, if you use disposable capsules, you are stuck with the capsules you purchased even when you would prefer a different brew.
With reusable Nespresso pods, you can add your own ground coffee. If your favorite coffee company doesn’t offer a Nespresso pod, you can still make it using your Nespresso machine at home.
What to Look for When Buying a Reusable Nespresso Pod
Not all reusable pods are created equal, and some of them won’t produce a cup of coffee that is as good as the official capsules.
This is because the Nespresso brewing process is very delicate, and if the cup doesn’t allow enough water through (for example) you can end up with a weaker brew.
The best reusable Nespresso pods are made to last, so you don’t need to constantly replace them. They also fit seamlessly into the machine and work like official capsules, as long as you fill them up correctly and follow directions.
The 4 Best Reusable Nespresso OriginalLine Pods (In 2023)
1. The Green Pods (Best Overall)
As you’ll see if you keep reading this article, there A LOT of different designs, materials, and approaches that manufacturers have tried when making a reusable Nespresso pod.
Plastic vs. steel.. Stick on lids vs. screw-on vs. clips.. What is the best?
The Green Pods design features a sleek stainless steel body and low profile press-on lid that’s held in place with food-grade silicone gaskets. This means it holds more coffee than the other designs, is completely sustainable, and is easy to fill and clean after.
Advantages over the others:
Let’s address the elephant in the room; what exactly is the difference between these and other reusable pods on the market?
- Capacity: The low profile lid means a Green Pod can hold 4.5 grams of ground coffee.
- Durability: Customers have been using these pods daily for 3+ years now without fail.
- Sustainability: some other pod designs use stick-on aluminum foil lids, which get thrown out after each use.. that’s not really sustainable (and you have to keep buying lids!). The Green Pods
- Brew Pressure: Without getting too technical, the filter in the capsules lid creates a back-pressure needed to extract the correct espresso shot.
2. Sealpod (Runner Up)
The best reusable capsules fit perfectly into the machine and allow pressure to build up inside the capsule during brewing so that the coffee comes out just like it would in a disposable capsule. Sealpod capsules do this beautifully.
Made from stainless steel, they are built to last and won’t wear down with repeated use.
Sealpod does use aluminum lids. Although some people are concerned that drinking coffee that has come into contact with heated aluminum can cause health problems, there is no evidence to support this. Aluminum is not toxic in these contexts, and it is perfectly safe to use aluminum lids in coffee capsules.
Our Reccomendation: These are pretty awesome. The stick-on lids provide a good back-pressure to make espresso coffee with a nice crema. Our only negative is the aluminum lids aren’t very sustainable, and you’ll have to keep buying more of them.
3. Alchemy Goods – Refillable Plastic Pods (Best Value Option)
One of the cheapest options for reusable Nespresso pods is also one of the best if you want to try the refillable Nespresso lifestyle.
Alchemy make these plastic pods that work in all Original line machines. they have a small stainless steel mesh filter in the bottom and lid to keep the coffee in the capsule.
Costing less than $18 USD for 6 capsules, they’re a great entry-level option.
Our Feedback: Unfortunately when we tried these they broke after about a month of use. The thin plastic hinge that holds the lid on seems to perish with use, so we don’t recommend them as a long term solution
These stainless steel reusable pods are built to last a lifetime – the company advertises decades of use – and work well on all Nespresso Original Line machines. Mycoffeestar has won awards for its design, including the Greentec Award, reddot award, and the International Design Award.
The capsules are not the cheapest on the market, but they do last a long time. Mycoffeestar estimates that for the average coffee drinker, the capsules will pay for themselves in 3 months.
Mycoffeestar makes a solid capsule that works and won’t break down. The major issues that people run into mainly come from not grinding the coffee fine enough, which is a problem with all reusable capsules that the manufacturer can’t do much about.
Our Recommendation: The well-machined screw-on lid gives the pods a premium feel, but unfortunately means you can’t fit as much coffee in the capsules. They are also more fiddly, and it’s easy to cross-thread and damage the lids.
MyCoffeeStar - Reusable Nespresso Caspule
|📏 Capacity||4 grams of coffee|
|💰 Price||$24 USD (6 Pack)|
|🏗️ Material||Stainless Steel|
|🌎 Sustainability||Fully reusable|
|🎁 Where to Buy||Link|
The 3 Best Reusable Nespresso VertuoLine Pods (In 2023)
1. The Green Pods (Best Overall)
The best reusable Nespresso VertuoLine pod is the most durable, the easiest to use, and produces some of the best-tasting coffee.
The Green Pods tick all these boxes.
2. Capmesso (Runner Up)
Capmesso reusable capsules are made from stainless steel with a convenient screw-on stainless steel top. This might not seem like a huge deal if you haven’t used a reusable capsule in a machine before, but many of the capsules are difficult to fill and require special lids. It’s extremely convenient to be able to fill up a capsule, and twist the top shut.
Their design fits seamlessly into VertuoLine machines and there haven’t been any compatibility issues.
If you’re looking for the most reliable reusable capsules for VertuoLine, go with Capmesso.
3. My Cap Foil Seals (Best Value)
The cheapest way to fill your own Nespresso Vertuoline capsules is to use the discarded bottoms of capsules you’ve already used, and equip them with a new foil seal. That way, you can add your own grounds.
You can buy the seals themselves for very cheap – $0.12 each – which makes this an incredible value.
You’ll eventually run out of lids, and you will need to keep reusing the cheap plastic bottoms of disposable capsules, but it will cost you very little.
Our Take: It’s a deceptively fiddly job, digging out your used capsules, carefully opening them, washing out the coffee and then scraping back the foil with a craft knife. However, we LOVE that this means you can actually reuse the ‘single use’ nespresso pods. It also means you can get the exact coffee size (from ‘espresso’ up to ‘mug’ and ‘alto’) because this is dictated by the barcode on the rim of the pod.!
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are the answers to a few questions we get asked about Reusable Nespresso Pods. If you’re still left wondering after this, feel free to leave us a message in the comments section below and we’ll get back to you right away 🙂
Q. How Much Money Can You Save by Using Reusable Nespresso Pods?
Nespresso pods cost on average about $0.75 per capsule (although there is a huge variance in quality, and between the two machines). This puts the cost of a daily coffee drinker at about $22.50 per month.
If you buy a reusable capsule, you incur an initial cost of $30-$150. That means you can stop buying all of those capsules, but you’ll still need to buy coffee to fill your capsules with.
If you spend $50 on a stainless steel capsule, and $10 on coffee a month, you will have paid off your investment in less than 6 months, and decreased the cost of your coffee consumption by more than half after that.
Q. Do Reusable Capsules Damage your Nespresso Machine?
No, reusable capsules are safe to use on your Nespresso machine. They are built to mimic the exact specifications of the official capsules, and as long as they aren’t twisted or damaged they should fit fine, and operate correctly.
However, things can go wrong.
Never push the capsule into the machine or force anything to fit. If grounds are coming out of the capsule, do not insert it into the machine. If steam is coming out of the machine or you hear any loud whirring or hissing noises, turn off the power and wait for it to cool before removing the capsule.
Q. What Coffee Should I Use?
You can use any variety of coffee you want, which is one of the amazing perks of reusable capsules!
However, to get the best results you will want to grind your coffee extremely finely. If you open up an official Nespresso capsule, you’ll see that the grounds are almost powder.
The closer you can get your coffee to this consistency, the better it will function in the machine.
You can use any brand of coffee you like (choose your favorite!) but grinding it very fine will create the best brew.