This is a space we reserve exclusively for official Dolce Gusto capsules (those of the brand itself). We have set it up as an online shop, where you can buy all the Dolce Gusto capsules you need: buying your Dolce Gusto single-dose here is as simple as looking for your favourite variety and clicking on its image.
But we also wanted to go a step further and offer some explanatory information that will be very useful to less experienced buyers or users who are approaching the brand for the first time.
As you can see, we have virtually the entire range of Nescafé Dolce Gusto capsules and even some premium espresso varieties, which are not always available in the usual supermarkets. You can also buy packs of several dozen capsules at a very attractive price.
As we will see later on, the best way to find offers for Dolce Gusto capsules is to buy them in large quantities. Go ahead! Come into our shop and have a look – what would you like to drink today?
Before we start exploring, we leave you with a list of articles and complementary content about Dolce Gusto capsules, which you should read if you are starting out in this world:
- Dolce Gusto Rechargeable Capsules
- Cheap Dolce Gusto capsules (ways to get them)
- All about Dolce Gusto compatible capsules
- Bella Café capsules for Dolce Gusto (those by Lidl)
- Broth capsules and soups for Dolce Gusto
- Zutec Dolce Gusto juice pods
The Dolce Gusto catalogue: all capsules and varieties
First of all, we must point out that the brand owned by the Nestlé Nescafé Dolce Gusto group shares almost half of the market of hot encapsulated drinks – together with the well-known Nespresso – the latter being perhaps the most media-friendly firm and also owned by the Swiss multinational.
However, in our opinion, and despite being subsidiaries of the same group, each brand is focused on a very different end consumer.
Nespresso, which has earned itself the title of Master Coffee Maker, focuses its efforts on attracting a more elite audience, for whom the high price of the capsules is not a problem. In our opinion, Nespresso’s ambition is to achieve perfection, the “gourmet” excellence of authentic espresso.
For its part, Nescafé Dolce Gusto is committed to reaching every home with a range of more affordable single-dose coffee machines and a wide range of drinks. The price of the capsule is significantly lower than that of its Nespresso counterpart.
We have a total of more than thirty varieties of Dolce Gusto capsules, which we can divide into the following sections:
Dolce Gusto espresso coffee capsules (espresso)
This is the widest range, although it is not as varied as in other formats such as Nespresso. We can distinguish between traditional espressos (normal and intense), but then there are also many varieties of black coffee that are not espressos: such as ristrettos or long ones (American, lungo, grande…).
Dolce Gusto capsules of origin
For the last year 2020, Dolce Gusto wanted to give a wink to speciality coffee lovers by launching a line of certified origin coffee capsules. These include, for example, coffee from Peru, Portugal and Mexico. It remains to be seen whether or not the Nestlé company decides to extend this range.
For the moment, these are the coffee capsules of origin that can be found on the Internet:
Previously there were some scattered attempts to introduce the original Dolce Gusto capsules into other markets, although with questionable success. These were limited editions that did not have much success and are now impossible to find.
Dolce Gusto Espresso Yunnan
Yunnan is a region located in southern China famous for its coffee production and for the peculiar climatic and orographic conditions that facilitate cultivation and give the product its unique characteristics.
Dolce Gusto brings us the aromas of this far-off Chinese region in an exceptional variety that the Nescafé firm marketed under the name of Yunnan Espresso, and which had since its launch a significantly higher price than normal capsules: £5.99 per box of 16 capsules.
Let’s get straight to what interests us: the capsules. Dolce Gusto has chosen to present its Yunnan espresso capsules in a box with different graphics and graphic design structures to those found in the packaging of common varieties.
The aim is to differentiate this premium variety from the rest of the normal capsule varieties from the outset – the visual impact. And, of course, with inevitable style references to Chinese culture. As you can see in the image, the colours red and silver predominate:
This Dolce Gusto Yunnan espresso is made from 100% Arabica beans and produces a delicate drink with slightly fruity overtones. It has more body (intense) than aroma (mild) and affirms it with a value of 7 points on its intensity scale, which, as you know, leads the Ardenza variety with 11 points.
Dolce Gusto describes it as “a surprising balance between the most intense coffee and the aromatic and delicate fragrances of passion fruit“,… although you know it is much better to taste it to understand it completely.
Dolce Gusto Nyumba Lungo
An attempt similar to that of the Yunnan espresso, although in this case in Lungo size (long espresso).
N’Yumba Lungo coffee is made from Arabica beans. As it is a premium variety, Dolce Gusto will market it in a Limited Edition (like the Yunnan) at a higher price than its normal espressos: 5.99 pounds per box of 16 units. Initially, they were only available in the Dolce Gusto online shop.
The N’Yumba is an intense Lungo (long cup), with floral aromas, notes of ripe fruit and a lot of flavours, as is often the case with coffees from Africa. At the end of the tasting, very soft citrus notes remain on the palate.
This Dolce Gusto N’Yumba was not a strong espresso: it is of medium intensity with a value of 7 on the Dolce Gusto scale.
It was aimed especially at lovers of full-bodied and aromatic coffees, who take the time to savour each cup and to discover every nuance of the raw material. N’Yumba Lungo is more of a coffee to be drunk quietly in the mid-afternoon than to be activated in the morning.
Dolce Gusto coffee pods with milk (mixed)
Here there is a very large variety of coffees, far beyond the classic lattes, cortados and macchiatos. There are also cappuccinos and macchiatos with different aromas (vanilla, caramel…)
Decaffeinated Dolce Gusto coffee pods
The great thing about the Dolce Gusto decaffeinated capsules is that they are not just limited to espressos. Still, we can also find the most popular mixed drinks (such as cortado or café con Leche) in a caffeine-free version.
Dolce Gusto chocolate capsules
In this group, we highlight the famous Chococcino (pure Nestlé chocolate) but also mocha (a mixture of coffee and cocoa) or the traditional Nesquick drinks.
Dolce Gusto tea and infusions
Dolce Gusto tea capsules started to become popular with different varieties of tea. Still, in the long run, this range has expanded to include other products (not the official ones, but the compatible ones).
Chai Latte, Marrakesh Style or black tea with honey and lemon are the most popular Dolce Gusto tea capsules today.
Dolce Gusto cold drinks
One of the big selling points of Dolce Gusto coffee machines compared to other brands is the possibility to prepare cold drinks (soft drinks), not just hot drinks. And, of course, we have a whole range of cold capsules available for Dolce Gusto, such as the brilliant cappuccino ice:
In the summer season, new varieties are often released specifically for cold preparation!
Dolce Gusto’s commitment to own brands
It is vital for Dolce Gusto to have its own brands among its products, such as Bonka coffee, Nesquik cocoa and Nestea soft drink infusions, thus generating enormous confidence among consumers who are already familiar with these products.
Interestingly, Dolce Gusto has a well-known brand for its coffee range, one for chocolate drinks and one for herbal teas. The only thing missing is my own brand for cappuccino or latte macchiato.
Capsule prices, traditional trade and online sales
First of all, we should point out that from 2015 onwards, there was a generalised rise in each and every brand of encapsulated coffee, largely due to the cost of the raw material.
As we have already mentioned, the Dolce Gusto capsule is cheaper than the Nespresso capsule. According to official prices on their respective websites, the Dolce Gusto capsule has a single price of £0.31. In contrast, the official Nespresso capsules range from £0.36 for the cheapest and £0.61 for special and/or limited editions.
All this, of course, is subject to market variations and promotions of the different varieties. But as a reference, it is useful.
On the other hand, we must comment as a negative aspect on a drawback that is repeated in each of the brands and systems of coffee and hot drinks packaged in capsules. This is none other than the very few references – or varieties – that we find in supermarkets.
Of the more than 30 varieties that Dolce Gusto offers us (at the time of writing), we will normally find 10 or 12 of them in the shops and no more. And now also at a unified price, as there is little room for great bargains in these markets.
Traditional formats and the emergence of Magnum and Espresso Collection Boxes
As we already know, the Dolce Gusto capsule boxes contain 16 pods so that 16 drinks can be prepared, except for those that require a separate milk capsule, such as cappuccinos and lattes, some teas and cocoa drinks.
However, at the end of 2014, Magnum formats for several of the brand’s most successful drinks, such as Dolce Gusto Intenso, Cappuccino and Latte, were launched with a bang. These formats are simply family packs containing 30 capsules instead of the traditional 16, which means an average saving of three cents on each drink.
The Espresso Collection Box is a small pack of 12 capsules containing 2 single-dose pods of each of the more traditional Dolce Gusto espressos. According to their scale of intensity and starting with the mildest, in particular, we will find two units of Dolce Gusto Espresso and the same number of units of Decaffeinated, Ristretto, Barista, Intense and Ardenza.
We would also like to mention at this point the premium Dolce Gusto Dallmayr capsules, especially for gourmet coffee lovers, which are very difficult to obtain except via the internet.
Nescafé Dolce Gusto’s most popular drinks
Consumers clearly opt for convenience, for trends, and for cappuccino, latte, or decaffeinated drinks, since in a single dose containing coffee and milk, our drink is prepared instantly.
However, if the consumer opts for an espresso coffee, his or her choice is mainly Espresso Intense or Decaffeinated.
The Ristretto Ardenza variety is at the highest level of intensity within the Dolce Gusto espresso range (which until then consisted of the Espresso, Espresso Caramel, Ristretto, Intense and Barista varieties), and is, therefore, an ideal choice for lovers of very intense, full-flavoured and full-bodied espresso coffee.
Logically, Ristretto Ardenza should ideally be drunk as a black coffee, and in a very short time, as indicated on the capsule with a level 1 dose of water in Dolce Gusto Automatic coffee machines.
Ristretto Ardenza is synonymous with intensity. As we have already mentioned, the Dolce Gusto Ristretto Ardenza variety is characterised by the fact that it is the most intense coffee in the entire range. Until now, this honour was held by the Ristretto and Barista espresso varieties, with a value of 8 and 9, respectively.
Ristretto Ardenza goes up to no less than 11 on the Dolce Gusto intensity scale. It achieves this thanks to the coffee’s aftertaste of sweet and dried fruits, slight hints of liquorice and juniper pepper. It really makes you want to try it.
Cappuccino in its normal version (Cappuccino Ice and Cappuccino Light are also available) is the favourite drink for those who do not like or cannot tolerate the intensity of coffee as we traditionally know it.
In the same line, we can find Latte Machiatto, a drink with a very light touch of coffee, sweetness and creaminess. Drinks such as Chococcino or Nesquik are ideal for the whole family. Specialities such as Mocha, Chocococaramel, Latte Machiatto Caramel or Vanilla complete the wide range of Dolce Gusto capsules, along with teas.
In terms of infusions, and in order of acceptance, we can distinguish Nestea Lemon or Peach, which are very easy to sell as they are drinks to be drunk cold and have the backing of the popular Nestea brand.
The Marrakesh, which has a certain minty touch; the Chai Tea Latte, prepared with milk and a mild oriental touch; and the Tea Latte. Finally, and always in our opinion, we think that there is perhaps a lack of variety in this segment, in the form of a camomile or pennyroyal infusion, for example.
To conclude this analysis, we would like to point out that the entire range of Nescafé Dolce Gusto capsules is suitable for coeliacs, as none of the varieties contains gluten.
Tips for buying your cheap Dolce Gusto capsules
Buying cheap Dolce Gusto capsules online is not possible unless you go to wholesalers (many websites, in fact, buy Dolce Gusto capsules wholesale and then resell them to individuals) or stick to very specific packs of large quantities of capsules. This is called buying Dolce Gusto capsules in bulk.
The reason for this is that the Nestlé company’s prices are very tight, and to order them on the Internet, you have to add shipping costs, so distributors or resellers are left with practically no margin.
When we find great deals on cheap Dolce Gusto capsules, it is usually because a reseller has acquired them at a very low price, taking advantage of a specific offer in supermarkets or department stores (the typical 3×2 and the like).
As the capsules have a very long-term expiry date, the seller can afford to sell them for a few months at a lower price than usual, but higher than what he paid, and so everyone wins (or we win).
Where are the best deals on Dolce Gusto capsules?
The best deals on Dolce Gusto capsules can be found in two market areas:
- The reliability and customer retention programmes of your trusted supermarket. For example, the classic 3×2. If you consume a lot of capsules in a month and can afford to buy a lot of them at once, these types of promotions will save you a lot of money if you know how to take advantage of them.
- The promotional formats marketed by the brand itself. The best known is the Magnum format: a large box of 30 capsules at a slightly better price per unit than buying the normal boxes of 16 single-dose capsules.
However, the savings in this format are not as appreciable as in the previous case. On Amazon, you can find them in packs of 3 boxes (i.e. 3×30 = 90 units), so the saving is a little more interesting. The downside: the Dolce Gusto Magnum capsule formats are not available in all the varieties in the catalogue.
What are the ingredients of the Dolce Gusto capsules?
Many users still have doubts about the ingredients in Dolce Gusto capsules. The answer is quite simple, although it obviously depends on the variety we are looking at. Broadly speaking, Dolce Gusto pods contain three main ingredients:
- Naturally roasted ground coffee.
- Milk powder.
- Cocoa powder.
Milk and cocoa powder is more like substitutes, but well… to understand each other.
Espresso capsules (i.e. just coffee) contain – logically – ground coffee in an amount that can vary depending on the length of the coffee in the speciality. The normal amount is between 5 and 8 grams of coffee.
Milk and cocoa are present in the mixed varieties, such as cortados, coffee with milk, macchiatos, moccaccinos, etc. In these specialities, moreover, the coffee is usually soluble, not exactly the same as the natural ground coffee in espresso pods.
Other ingredients in Dolce Gusto coffee capsules, in this case artificial, maybe stabilisers and the usual soy lecithin used as an emulsifier.
Finally, and only in certain varieties (usually mixed specialities), Dolce Gusto capsules may contain small amounts of sugar, cinnamon or other flavourings.
And what do Dolce Gusto infusion capsules contain? That’s where it gets worse. Most of these specialities contain sugar and a small proportion of tea extract, and natural flavourings depending on the type of capsule you choose.
Are there refillable Dolce Gusto capsules?
Yes, empty or refillable Dolce Gusto capsules (they can be called by different names) are an increasingly popular alternative on the market. You can use these, or the compatible ones, if the quality or variety of the official capsules does not suit you too well.
We have compiled everything you need to know about these reusable Dolce Gusto capsules in this article on our website: Dolce Gusto Rechargeable Capsules.
Recycling Dolce Gusto capsules: consuming without harming the planet
Everything you need to know about how to recycle your Dolce Gusto capsules can be found in the following article: Where to Recycle the Coffee Capsules?
Broadly speaking, the best ways to recycle your Dolce Gusto coffee capsules are to make crafts and other decorative objects.
If crafting is not your thing, the only thing left for you to do is to be very careful at home to separate the leftovers into different containers. In the case of the capsules, if you want to be strict, it is hard work because the packaging is made of aluminium, while the coffee grounds inside are organic.
The compostable format is not available at the moment from the official brand (which is the one we deal with on this page). However, it is available from other compatible manufacturers.