Home » Coffee Pods vs Capsules: Unveiling All The Differences

Coffee Pods vs Capsules: Unveiling All The Differences

Are there any Differences between Coffee Pods and Coffee Capsules?

Coffee capsules and coffee pods are completely different, but ultimately they all lead to the same goal of producing a cup of coffee. Coffee capsules and coffee pods differ radically in the way they are made. The two are similar that they are made for the same final purpose and are to be used in a coffee brewer.

Many people think that coffee pods and coffee capsules can be used in all coffee makers, and this is totally untrue. The technique that a coffee maker needs to extract coffee from coffee capsules is completely different from the technique used to extract coffee from coffee capsules.

Some coffee makers have a clear warning that the coffee brew machine is specially designed to work with coffee capsules or coffee pods. Do not be afraid, it is not really harmful, but it will significantly affect the quality of the coffee if you do not comply with the manufacturer’s instructions.

There are a few coffee makers that can be adapted to work with coffee pods and coffee capsules at the same time. These simple adjustments get you boring over time, so I don’t recommend this type of coffee maker.

To understand the difference between coffee capsules and coffee pods, I will explain each of them separately. Then I will collect their differences and similarities in a small table.

Coffee Pods

Coffee pods are very similar to the tea bags. It is usually shaped like a puffed out round center filled with ground coffee. These bags are not simply thrown into the water like tea bags, but rather you need a specialized coffee maker for this type of pods. The coffee maker slowly squeezes the coffee pods to extract the coffee from them.

Each coffee pod is used once and then discarded. That is, it cannot be replaced or refilled. These coffee pods are liable to spoil when using high pressure to extract coffee from them.

To prepare coffee using coffee pods a rather low pressure system must be used to extract the coffee successfully. This system works almost as well as the idea of ​​distillation. Each coffee pod usually contain about 7g of ground coffee.

Coffee pods come in two types. The first type, called pressed pods, is specifically designed for making espresso. This type of coffee pods bears high pressure so that the coffee maker can extract the coffee inside it with high quality. The second type is called soft capsules or pads. It is usually used for most types of coffee.

Coffee Capsules

Coffee capsules are made of aluminum or hardened plastic and filled with ground coffee. And since it is not very flexible, it is necessary to check its size and compatibility with the coffee maker machine you have. Because it comes in different sizes and different quantities. Usually, it contains 5 grams of ground coffee, which is enough quantity to make espresso.

Coffee capsules are the most popular around the world. This is counted because it is easy to store and does not get damaged easily. The coffee capsules are intended for one use and then disposed of. It cannot be refilled or reused. Recently, there are types of coffee capsules that can be refilled, but have not received the desired spread.

The surface of these capsules are made of light metal foil. When you put it in a coffee maker. The machine punches two holes, one in the foil and the other at the bottom of the coffee capsule, to extract the largest possible amount of ground coffee.

The coffee makers with the capsule system do not support all types of capsules. Some capsules are specially made to work with coffee makers from a specific company. An example of that is Nespresso.

What are the Differences between Coffee Capsules and Coffee Pods?

I hope that I have succeeded in clarifying the whole picture for you about coffee pods and capsules. Coffee capsules and coffee pods do not differ much. I think it all comes down to consumer preferences. I have prepared the following table with the things that coffee pods and coffee capsules are similar to, and also the things that they differ in.


Coffee Capsules

Coffee Pods

Ease of use







Easy to clean.

A bit hard.


Aluminum or hardened plastic.

Filter paper.

High Pressure




5 grams.

7 grams.




Are There Any Coffee Capsules of Pods For Cold Brew?

Coffee capsules and pods are intended for making espresso. After extracting the espresso, you can make cold brew coffee. And for the best types of coffee for cold brew, read this article.

Are Coffee Capsules and Pods a Kind of Instant Coffee?

Coffee capsules and pods are different from instant coffee. As both of them are made completely differently. You can read this article to find out how instant coffee is made.

Do Coffee Capsules and Pods Come In Different Roasting Degrees?

Since coffee capsules and pods are intended for espresso, they are usually dark roasted. Roasting coffee directly affects the flavor of the coffee extract. In this article, you will find more information about roasted and non-roasted coffee.

Are Coffee Capsules And Pods a Type of Ground Coffee?

Coffee capsules are pre-ground coffee. Industrially prepared to produce a uniform espresso taste after each use. To learn more about ground coffee and its difference from whole coffee beans, read this article.


  • Paul Dimitrov

    From Nashville, Paul Dimitrov combines a love for music and coffee like no other. With a Cornell degree in Agricultural Science and certified by the Specialty Coffee Association, his coffee expertise is unparalleled. A global traveler, he brings tales of coffee fused with culture. His top brew pick? The Flat White. At Coffeescan.com, Dimitrov enriches with his deep coffee insights.

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