When you’re purchasing any other kitchen appliance, such as a toaster, sandwich maker or microwave, you can generally select from a range of product sizes. Toasters come in 2, 4 and 6-slice iterations for example, while kettles can hold differing levels of water.
The same can be said for coffee makers, which can be picked up in single-serve machines that produce 1 cup for each pod, or larger units that can produce a pot of coffee for the whole family or the office (see Keurig K200 review).
They can take away the tedium of brewing a mug by hand, while saving you money on expensive daily takeaway coffees. Below, we’ll look at the Keurig K200, which is a larger coffee maker.
Keurig K200 Overview
The Keurig K200 is one of the largest models in the Keurig range of coffee makers, with a wide-reaching reputation as the perfect solution for offices, homes and hotels, especially given the carafe feature.
If you’re looking to buy this coffee maker new from a retailer, then you’ll end up with the 2.0 model, which was announced by Keurig in 2014; prior to this, the same model existed but with less functionality.
The 2.0 reinvention of the machine is what’s responsible for the introduction of the ability to brew whole carafes of coffee from a single pod, though it is also exclusively compatible with only the newer varieties of K-Cup Pods, and no other branded coffee pods. Keurig call this machine ‘the future of brewing.’
Who is this Coffee Machine Keurig K200 For?
The popularity of the Keurig K200 is known
across the home and business world.
Many small hotels and B&Bs select this machine for their breakfast servings, while small businesses also favor the machine for offices with a low volume of employees. Running costs can be less than bean-to-cup machine rental and maintenance, which makes the K200 the perfect alternative to such a machine.
With machines that operate based on coffee pods, many people choose to buy in bulk, as it largely reduces the ongoing operating costs. However, if you’re sitting on a large stash of Keurig pods, then this machine may not be for you. The K200 uses coffee pods that have a specialized barcode printed onto the foil packaging.
Without this barcode, the machine will fail to brew any coffee. Since older versions of the brand’s own K-Cup Pods lack this barcode, they won’t work in the K200 2.0 machine, so you may want to wait until you’ve finished clearing through your stash before you upgrade machines.
What’s Included with the Keurig K200?
The basic components of the machine are of course included, by which we mean the removable drip tray and the removable water reservoir, complete with lid. In addition, the bundle includes a water filter handle and charcoal water filter.
These filters can be replaced regularly for a relatively small cost, though strictly speaking, they are not an absolute requirement for the proper functioning of the machine; however, they’ll improve the quality of the water that you use to brew your coffee.
What’s lacking from this package is an actual carafe to be used with the carafe brew setting. Keurig produce their own branded version, which fits perfectly in place of the removable drip tray; however, you could in theory use a non-branded alternative provided that it fits beneath the coffee dispenser.
For a thorough, in-depth look at the product and how it looks out of the box, as well as what is and isn’t included, you can check out this unboxing video on YouTube.
Keurig K200 Features
The Keurig K200 is one of the most feature-rich coffee makers from the Keurig family, meaning it’s also one of the more expensive models around.
Though there are some limitations around coffee pod choice, this is outweighed by the functionality that the machine boasts. Below, we’ll look at some of the most defining characteristics and functions of this coffee maker.
Keurig offer a range of coffee makers of varying size and capability. The majority of the smaller machines available don't have a great deal of customization options, though the K200 is different.
With this coffee maker, you have a choice of various colors, including Black, Turquoise, White, Orange Zest, Sandy Pearl and Strawberry; in total, there are 11 distinct color options available. Though some colors are more easily sourced and readily available than others, it’s still a level of customization that other models don’t always have beyond the basic black and white types.
Vast Range of Brew Sizes
The K200 has one of the widest ranges of brew sizes available of any Keurig machine, with a total of 9 possible settings to choose from.
Aside from the usual cup sizes you'd expect, which include 4 oz., 6 oz., 8 oz. and 10 oz. settings, there is also a setting and sufficient space underneath the dispenser to brew an entire 40 oz. carafe. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that the product package doesn’t include a carafe, so you’ll want to buy one if your intention is to use this setting.
Regardless of the specifications of your coffee maker, or the quality of the ground coffee that you choose, the flavor of your brewed coffee can be affected by other factors, such as impurities within the tap water that you use.
This is less of a problem with the Keurig K200, as it comes with a charcoal filter included in the box, which works to remove impurities from the water that is processed through the machine. The filter eliminates a potential source of impurity and reduces the likelihood of your coffee’s taste being affected by poor water quality.
Depending on the size of the machine, coffee makers will have the water reservoir positioned differently. The smallest Keurig machine, the K15, has a completely hidden, built-in reservoir, which only caters for a single cup at a time, whereas the K40 has a slightly larger and side-mounted reservoir.
The K200 2.0 features a full-color LCD display, which works based on touch, just like your smartphone or tablet. Through the display, you have full control over the cup sizes that the machine brews, as well as the ability to control the strength of your coffees. With the exception of the brewing button, all of the machine’s functionality is controlled via this 2-inch touch screen.
How to Use the Keurig K200
Before getting started with your first brew, you'll need to get the machine up and running.
Of course, the first step is to remove the packaging and tape from all the components and the unit itself, before placing a mug of at least 12 oz. capacity on the drip tray.
This will be used as part of the initial cleaning process, as you shouldn't brew a drink until you've flushed the system out.
Next, you'll want to remove the built-in water reservoir’s lid and then remove the unit itself, lifting it directly from its rear compartment.
Next, fill it up all the way to the 'Max' capacity marked on the plastic housing, replacing it in the rear of the unit and ensure that it locks into place, then replace the lid. Your next step will be to cleanse the system fully. Start by powering on the machine, then lifting the handle and throwing away the orange shipping disk, which sits in the pod housing.
Replace the handle and allow the unit to heat for around 3 minutes. Lift the handle once more and replace it, before pressing the 'Brew' button which should now show a flashing LED. The water dispensed through this process should be poured down the sink.
Once the above process has been complete, you're ready to brew. The process is different for K-Cup Pods and K-Carafe Pods, so we'll start with the smaller of the two. Place a fresh mug on the drip tray – or remove the tray if using a tall travel mug - and then lift the handle, placing a K-Cup Pod inside of the unit, before lowering the handle again; ensure that it locks.
Next, choose a brew size using the LCD screen, before pressing the flashing 'Brew' button to start the process. You'll be notified when the brewing has finished. Finally, we'll look at the K-Carafe Pod brewing process. Start by replacing the drip tray with the Keurig Carafe, or an equally sized unit.
Place a K-Carafe specialized pod into the pod holder beneath the handle, and then choose the brew setting that matches the one indicated on the pod itself. Finally, press the 'Brew' button as usual.
Make no mistake, the K200 is ideal for large groups, but it might be overkill if you’re a single person living alone, or even a couple living together.
The 40 oz. reservoir is very large and filling it with just enough water to produce 1 or 2 cups of brew might feel like a silly exercise in practice.
In such a scenario, you may be better opting for something like the K-Mini K15, which is the smallest coffee machine in the Keurig range.
It commands a tiny footprint in the kitchen and can capably produce a single cup of coffee in just a couple of minutes, without any need to tip away excess water that can cause limescale if left to sit within a reservoir as large as the K200 has.
The new limitations imposed by the 2.0 edition of the Keurig K200 may also be a turnoff for some coffee lovers. A barcode scanner built into this machine will detect if you try to use a coffee pod that isn’t a Keurig K200-compatible K-Cup Pod, and display an error message.
The barcodes ensure that specific settings within the machine can tailor the drink exactly to how it was intended to be made, but it does mean no more buying cheaper pods in bulk. If there are hot drinks pods that you enjoy, but that aren’t part of the K-Cup range, then perhaps the Keurig K-Select will be more appropriate.
Finally, we’ll look at the Keurig K40, or the ‘Elite Brewing System’ as it is also known. This is an ideal alternative to the K200 if you’re the kind of person who buys a freshly ground bag of coffee at a seasonal market, or receive a bag as a gift from time to time.
Unlike many of the other coffee makers in the range, the K40 is capable of producing brew from both pods and fresh coffee grounds, provided you have a filter for the latter.
So, if you enjoy something a little different on the odd occasion, then you might want to choose this machine.
This machine is stylish and feature rich, with several functions you just won’t get in the smaller, lower-budget coffee makers, such as an LCD touch screen and variable strength settings. If you’re looking to cater for large groups at a time, then you can’t go wrong with the Keurig K200.
You’re going to need some considerable countertop space available for its imposing footprint, but it’s the most capable machine of the Keurig range when it comes to producing large volumes of brew in the shortest amount of time possible. Just be sure to check that you aren’t sitting on a stash of incompatible coffee pods first.