Ah, espresso. What was once a messy, difficult way to start the day turned into a convenient, affordable and time-saving task when Nespresso introduced the coffee capsule into our lives.
But convenience? Well, that comes at a price. Most coffee pods end up in landfills where they don’t break down for up to 500 years.
Luckily for us, there are now hundreds of eco-friendly alternatives! But which ones will bring us the best brew?
We tried and tested the lot to bring you the ultimate list of coffee pods that are compostable, biodegradable or recyclable (just remember to rinse them out completely before you pop them in the recycling!). Great coffee that won’t cost you the earth - literally.
Grind’s organic and compostable pods are our number one eco-friendly choice. With four different blends to choose from, our favourite is their House Blend, with notes of dark chocolate and hazelnut. It’s light, sweet, and doesn’t leave a bitter aftertaste - not to mention their packaging is totally insta-worthy.
2. HALO Coffee
HALO make their coffee pods fully compostable by crafting them out of sugar cane and paper pulp. They offer ten different blends to suit different palates, so you know you’ll find the perfect match to kickstart your morning.
3. Cru Kafe
Rather than going down the compostable pod route, which they claim can deform and malfunction to ensure a less-than-perfect pour, Cru Kafe make their coffee pods from aluminium to guarantee maximum freshness and taste. With 100% recyclable aluminium pods, their mission is to create great coffee in a sustainable and ethical way, without sacrificing quality. (Just remember to recycle them responsibly so they don’t end up in a landfill).
4. Black Insomnia
Black Insomnia pods give you a super-charged coffee kick when you need it most. And with one cup claiming to give you the equivalent of four, it’s not hard to see why. Their 100% plant-based and fully compostable pods are kind to the environment, giving you your guilt-free caffeine fix on the daily.
5. Roar Gill
Roar Gill’s pods are 100% compostable, as well as being crafted using carbon neutral capsule production and coffee roasting processes. Their 40 pod starter pack allows you to try their four origin profiles to find the one that suits your taste.
6. Volcano Coffee Works
Volcano Coffee Works offer a coffee experience that’s biodegradable, eco and vegan friendly, and they were the first to bring fully compostable coffee pods to the market. With ‘Balance’, ‘Reserve’, ‘Bold’ and ‘Decaf’ blends to choose from, their brews will definitely satisfy your caffeine craving.
7. Fireheart Coffee
By changing their blend with the seasons, you can always depend on Fireheart Coffee to deliver only the best tasting coffee. Pods are 100% plastic free and compostable, and break down in 6-10 weeks. We’re in love with the packaging design, too.
8. Kiss The Hippo
Kiss The Hippo allow you to create a barista style brew at home, without harming the environment. They’ve embraced compostable coffee pod technology, as well as being carbon negative and planting a tree for every single subscription of their pods. Our favourite is their Organic House Blend, with notes of chocolate, caramel and red berries.
9. Moving Beans
Made completely from plant-based materials, Moving Beans’ range of compostables are a winning-choice for an eco-friendly espresso. The classic espresso blend is rich and robust - great for drinking on its own - while their Kenya single origin would suit people who enjoy the more citrusy, smooth notes.
Pact’s full-bodied, 100% recyclable coffee pod range is deliciously smooth, and their coffee pod mixed box gives you the chance to try aromatic flavour profiles that span from fruity to chocolatey. Their mission is to transform the problematic coffee industry, by paying coffee farmers premium prices for premium coffee.
Designed as a nod to the Nordic coffee scene, this quality coffee is lightly roasted to preserve the natural minerals, nutrients and antioxidants. Full-bodied and created with a long-lasting crema in mind, these coffee pods are Fairtrade, organic, plastic-free and 100% compostable.
12. Blue Goose Coffee
Blue Goose make a range of compostable coffee capsules for the at-home barista. We tried their Lungo which made a perfectly pleasant brew with fruity notes and a bold aroma.
The first coffee pods in the world to feature an oxygen barrier to preserve freshness and reduce packaging, this eco-friendly, climate-neutral option is intense but sweet, with delicious notes of dark sugar and chocolate.
Rave are committed to bringing you the best cup of coffee you’ve ever had, sourcing only the best quality raw product they can find. Their pods are packed with their house blend - a delicious cup featuring notes of almond, caramel and chocolate - and can be composted at home or industrially.
Penningtons Coffee is ethically sourced and hand roasted in the Lake District by a small family business. Their Single Origin Arabica Cerrado beans are offered on subscription to make sure you never run out of their great tasting brew. Just pop them in the compost bin when you’re done, and they’ll disappear within 12 weeks. Eco-friendly magic!