Can You Make Espresso in a Keurig? [+ Steps to Make Perfect Espresso]

Published: 10/24/22 •  5 min read

Keurig makes it easy to prepare several different hot beverages or iced coffee. However, while Keurig makes exceptional coffee, authentic espresso uses a different process.

There’s no denying that Keurig coffee maker makes delicious coffee. But what if you want espresso? Keurig coffee makers cannot make authentic espresso because they don’t use pressure like espresso machines.

When you serve concentrated coffee in shots, we call it an espresso. Forcing pressurized hot water through finely-ground coffee beans makes an espresso shot. The crema that adorns a delicious espresso shot is a caramel-colored, creamy foam containing all those delicious coffee oils.

This article will help you make something close to espresso with your Keurig coffee machine.

Can you make espresso with a Keurig?

All Keurig machines are drip machines and work the same way. Regular coffee is made by slowly pouring hot water over ground coffee for longer. Keurig Rivo is the only model that makes real espresso, but the brand no longer manufactures it.

A Keurig coffee machine doesn’t use pressure in brewing and has a lower brewing temperature. On the other hand, brewing espresso requires 9 bar pressure and 190 to 195°F water temperature.

making espresso in keurig

However, with the Keurig machine, you can make concentrated coffee that tastes close to espresso.

Does Keurig have Espresso Pods?

You can find pretty much any roast available in the form of a Keurig K Cup. The K-Cups advertised as espresso pods are typically dark roast blends with added caffeine, as a medium to dark roast coffee works best for espresso.

Some of our favorites are Illy Forte K-cup, Lavazza Perfetto, or Starbucks Verismo, which has bold and rich flavors with enticing aromas. While it imitates espresso’s rich flavor and effect, it will not produce a crema like an authentic espresso.

How to make an Espresso with Keurig?

With the right equipment and process, you can easily make espresso with your Keurig brewer. Read on to get the recipe for the best espresso your Keurig can produce.

Equipment You Will Need


Step 1: Choose an Espresso K-cup

Choose a medium to dark roast K-cup for your drink to taste closest to an espresso. A roast of this type is oilier and has prominent nutty and earthy notes that shine through when you brew espresso. It will make something similar to espresso with a strong and intense flavor.

Keurig k-cup

You might enjoy some of these K-cup flavors:

Step 2: Choose your Keurig’s Smallest Cup Size

Keurig brewers have 6 oz as the smallest cup size except for their Supreme Plus, which makes a 4 oz drink. It is best to go for the smallest cup size available on your Keurig because there is a 2:1 ratio of coffee to water in a classic espresso one-ounce shot.

The smaller the cup size, the more concentrated the coffee.

Step 3: Choose the Strength for your Espresso

Some Keurig models allow you to adjust the strength of your drink, like the K-Express. This option increases the brew time and extracts more caffeine from the k-cup, resulting in a strong and bold coffee.

While adjusting the strength of your drink, keep in mind the K-cup you are using. Even a slight increase in strength can make a strong coffee using a dark roast K-cup.

Step 4: Start the Brewing Process

Place a cup on the drip tray and start the brewing process by choosing the smallest cup size. Once you press the brew button, your Keurig will start dispensing espresso.

selecting the cup size on keurig

Step 5: Pour the Coffee into Espresso Cups

Pour your coffee into espresso cups instead of one large cup to make it feel like espresso. There won’t be much crema, but the small cups will be more like espresso.

The Bottom Line

The Keurig machine does not use pressure to brew coffee, so it cannot be called “real” espresso. If you are an espresso lover, we recommend you not buy a Keurig. But if you already have it, it’s not that bad of a choice if you learn to experiment with it to make an espresso.

If you tweak the recipe here and there, you should be able to make an espresso-like cup of coffee with little effort.

We hope this article will help you prepare a concentrated shot of coffee, similar to an espresso shot.


Can you make a double shot of espresso with a Keurig?

No. The Keurig coffee machines are for coffee and not for espresso shots. However, the K-Cafe could be the best choice for concentrated coffee, similar to espressos shots.

Does Keurig K-Cafe make Espresso shots?

K-Cafe is for brewing lattes and cappuccinos but also has an option of making concentrated coffee. With its Shot option and dark roast K-cups, you can get something similar to an espresso shot.

How Do You Use Espresso K-cups in a Keurig?

Insert an espresso pod into your Keurig and close the lid. Choose the smallest cup size available on your brewer and press the brew button. If your Keurig has a shot option, press it to get an espresso shot ready in minutes.

What is the difference between Nespresso and Keurig?

Nespresso and Keurig are the leading coffee brands that are recognized worldwide for the quality of coffee and the convenience of their brewers. Nespresso espresso machine makes flavorful espresso and coffee but comes with a hefty price tag. On the other hand, Keurig is affordable but does not make authentic espresso. We recommend Nespresso for espresso lovers, while Keurig works best for coffee drinkers.

What is the Difference Between Authentic Espresso and Keurig “Espresso”?

An authentic Espresso shot requires at least 9 bar pressure for water at 190 to 195°F to pass through the coffee grounds. Espresso pods with finely ground coffee grounds make the best espresso. Meanwhile, Keurig’s brewing technique doesn’t involve any pressure. If you make espresso with a Keurig, it will be something similar to an espresso but will lack taste and texture.

Hans Mast

Hans loves coffee and loves teaching about coffee