With the rise of Nespresso coffee machines, alternatives to the official Nespresso capsules, which are of excellent quality but which we already know are a bit expensive, are continually emerging on the market. There are three main options if we want to save money with our Nespresso coffee capsules:
- Use compatible Nespresso capsules, which are much cheaper than regular Nespresso capsules. Here you can find all types: from the most basic (and affordable) to gourmet capsules that in many cases equal or exceed the aroma of the official capsules but also equal in price.
- Another possibility, cheaper but more laborious, is to refill Nespresso capsules. You can find out more about this technique in the article we have just linked to.
- And, finally, the option we are going to talk about in today’s article: Using empty Nespresso capsules or refillable Nespresso capsules.
These are currently the most popular on the market:
Attention: Most rechargeable capsules for Nespresso are compatible with the Inissia, Lattissima, U, Citiz and Pixie models, but not for the Essenza Mini or the Prodigio.
- 1 What is the Nespresso Rechargeable Capsules?
- 2 Reusable Nespresso capsules and single-use capsules
- 3 Where to buy refillable Nespresso capsules
- 4 Are refillable capsules good for Nespresso machines?
- 5 Nespresso refillable capsules: Opinions and conclusions
What is the Nespresso Rechargeable Capsules?
The reusable capsules for Nespresso are empty, generally made of plastic and silicone (there are also stainless-steel capsules, as we will see later), which have the same shape and dimensions as a regular Nespresso capsule.
They include a system that allows you to pour your favourite coffee blend into it, prepare the coffee in the coffee maker, clean it, and put it back for another use.
Of course, Stainless Steel Nespresso refillable capsules are more expensive and durable than plastic ones.
They are also known as compatible Nespresso refill capsules, but they should not be confused with standard compatible capsules. Compatible capsules are single-use and come filled with coffee. The refillable ones come empty, and we must refill them every time we go to make coffee.
As you can imagine, this type of refillable capsule or Nespresso refill capsule is, in the long run, much cheaper than any other. Its durability depends on the manufacturer and the brand, but we can often make between 50 and 100 cups of coffee with a single refillable Nespresso capsule.
In the following video, you can see in detail what they look like:
Reusable Nespresso capsules and single-use capsules
There are two main types of Nespresso refillable capsules on the market, and there is an essential difference between them: they can be reusable or single-use.
Rechargeable capsules for Nespresso (non-refillable)
Single-use capsules behave similarly to standard capsules, but with the exception that they are disposable. You pour coffee into them, put them in the coffee maker, extract the espresso, and throw them away. They’re not reusable.
Reusable capsules for Nespresso (steel)
On the other hand, we have capsules that, in addition to being rechargeable, are reusable. They are usually stainless steel Nespresso capsules, and we have to wash and dry them thoroughly after each use.
Theoretically, they can last a lifetime, although we cannot confirm this because they have not been on the market long enough for anyone to be able to refute it or have encountered serious durability problems with these capsules.
We like the EmoHome, DiCup and CoffeeDuck capsules. Here are more examples of Nespresso steel refillable capsules:
Where to buy refillable Nespresso capsules
It is not easy to know or discover sites that sell empty Nespresso capsules. They are hardly sold in physical stores. Almost all the activity is done on the Internet, so the most natural way, as it usually happens, is to buy your Nespresso refillable capsules at Amazon. You can also buy refillable Nespresso capsules at Aliexpress, but you know that Amazon is more widespread and has a bigger market.
Nespresso refillable capsules are usually sold in packs of 5-10 units for reusable capsules and several hundred for single-use capsules.
The manufacturer of empty Nespresso capsules usually specifies on its package, or in the accompanying information leaflet, how many uses it recommends for each reusable capsule and what is the correct way to use them. We advise you to read these instructions carefully before using them for the first time to avoid any major blunders.
Here is a summary of the best refillable capsules for Nespresso, with their prices and offers that are entirely up to date:
Are refillable capsules good for Nespresso machines?
Yes, they all follow the same system and carry all the guarantees. They are more than tested and proven before they go on the market, although some warn you that their refillable capsule only works in specific models of Nespresso coffee machines.
The thing is, you shouldn’t expect to get the same result with rechargeable capsules as with single-use capsules. Why? Because as you use them, and even though the manufacturer guarantees their durability, the refillable capsule may become deformed or deteriorated. You can never be sure that the next cup will be the same as the previous one.
If you have a brand new Nespresso coffee machine, we recommend that before you buy refillable capsules online, you make sure that they are compatible with your machine.
Nespresso refillable coffee machine capsules may have a slight resistance to being punctured (lowering the dispenser lever) the first few times. But this is something that softens over time and does not affect the performance of the machine as long as you do not force it or make a fool of it.
On the other hand, keep in mind that if you experience a malfunction or technical problem while using a refillable (or compatible) capsule, even if the capsule does not directly cause it, your brewer will not be covered by warranty.
Nespresso refillable capsules: Opinions and conclusions
Buying refillable capsules for Nespresso is an increasingly common practice among consumers. It forces brands to increase and improve their offer to accommodate so much demand. In the end, we are the beneficiaries.
In our opinion, this type of refillable capsule for Nespresso has two significant advantages: on the one hand, its price (obvious), and on the other hand, the possibility of enjoying your favourite coffee blend without being limited to what Nespresso offers you.
But they also have several clear disadvantages:
- You have to get a ground coffee or a quality blend right for the result to be optimal. You will also have to press it in the right way (no more and no less than recommended). In short, it takes away more responsibility from the user.
- Nespresso refillable capsules made of aluminium or plastic (those not made of steel) can become deformed and deteriorate over time.
- And finally: having to refill the capsule with coffee every time you go to enjoy one loses the speed, immediacy and cleanliness of capsule systems.
Therefore, some say that it is better to forget about the capsules and prepare the espresso with a manual espresso machine, one of those of all times. Well, there’s no accounting for taste. We have already given you as much information as possible, and now it is up to you to decide.