Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker: An Impressive Brewing System for Coffeehouse Drinks at Home

Published on July 19, 2023, 6:14 p.m.

Making delicious coffeehouse drinks like lattes, cappuccinos, and macchiatos is now easier than ever with the new Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker. This innovative brewer takes pod-based coffee to the next level with smart features and a built-in milk frother, allowing you to create customized coffee drinks with frothy, foamy milk right at home.

 Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker

Overview

The K-Cafe SMART coffee maker has a sleek, modern design with a black finish. It measures 12.1 inches deep, 11 inches wide, and 17.2 inches tall, so it fits well on most countertops without taking up too much space. The 60 ounce removable water reservoir is large enough to brew 6-8 cups before refilling.

At its core, Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker is a single serve Keurig brewer that uses K-Cup pods. It has MultiStream technology to saturate grounds evenly and extract robust flavor. The K-Cafe SMART has customizable brew settings like strength control and temperature control so you can personalize each cup.

Key Features:

  • Milk Frother: Built-in for creating lattes and cappuccinos.
  • BrewID™: Recognizes K-Cup pods and adjusts settings for optimal taste.
  • Customizable Brews: Personalize your coffee with different strengths and temperatures.
  • Smart Features: Connect to the Keurig app for remote brewing and personalized settings.

 Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker

Design & Build Quality

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker has a modern, compact design with metal and plastic construction. Minor assembly is required to attach the drip tray, but everything fits together solidly once put together.

While brewing and frothing cannot be performed simultaneously, the machine automatically defaults to finish brewing coffee before frothing milk when starting both functions.

The water reservoir holds enough for 5-6 cups of coffee. An LED light illuminates the interior, making it easy to see the water level. The reservoir lifts out from the back of the machine for easy filling.

The control panel is very simple, with just 6 buttons for all functions. Each button illuminates when active. The monochrome LCD display shows basic beverage settings and maintenance alerts. Wifi connectivity allows accessing more advanced features using the Keurig mobile app.

Ease of Use

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker is designed for straightforward operation. Inserting a pod triggers the BrewID technology to optimize settings automatically. One touch of the brew button begins making coffee.

The milk frother requires only filling the jar with milk, attaching the frother head and choosing a temperature setting. Frothing starts automatically once attached.

Connecting the brewer to wifi and the Keurig mobile app unlocks the full potential of the BrewID technology. The app provides guided recipes and customizable presets for specialty coffee drinks.

Programming the brewer through the app takes some upfront time investment, but ultimately makes the Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker simple to operate on a daily basis. I especially like the option to remotely start a brew through the app.

Smart Features

Connecting the Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker to wifi and the Keurig app enables some very useful smart capabilities via the BrewID technology:

  • The brewer recognizes each K-Cup pod brand and variety. The app provides tailored recipes and optimized brew settings for every pod.

  • Customizable “coffee profiles” can be created and saved. Each profile stores preferred brew settings and drink recipes.

  • Scheduled brewing can be programmed up to 24 hours in advance. The app will automatically begin brewing coffee at the desired time.

  • Brewing can be activated remotely through the app anytime, anywhere. This is perfect for starting coffee before getting out of bed!

  • The app tracks pod usage and can automatically reorder your favorites via Amazon. No more running out of daily coffee pods.

BrewID™ Technology: Brewing Perfection Personalized

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART’s BrewID™ technology is a game-changer for coffee enthusiasts. This innovative feature automatically scans the barcode on your K-Cup pod, instantly identifying the specific coffee blend and roast. The brewer then communicates with the Keurig app, accessing a vast database of coffee profiles. With this information, the K-Cafe SMART adjusts the brew settings to the precise recommendations of the coffee experts who crafted that particular blend. This ensures that every cup is brewed to perfection, capturing the unique flavors and aromas intended by the roasters. Whether you prefer a dark roast with a bold, intense flavor or a light roast with delicate floral notes, BrewID™ guarantees that you’ll experience the full potential of your coffee.

Café Creations™: Your Personal Barista

Elevate your coffee experience with the Keurig K-Cafe SMART’s Café Creations™. This feature, accessible through the Keurig app, opens a world of coffeehouse-inspired drinks at your fingertips. Explore a curated collection of recipes designed specifically for your K-Cup® pods, complete with easy-to-follow instructions. Whether you’re craving a classic latte, a velvety cappuccino, or an indulgent macchiato, Café Creations™ guides you through each step, ensuring a barista-quality beverage every time. With options for both hot and iced drinks, you can enjoy your favorite coffee creations year-round.

Barista Mode™: Crafting Coffeehouse Drinks Made Easy

For the ultimate in coffee customization, the Keurig K-Cafe SMART’s Barista Mode™ is a must-have. Available through the Keurig app, this feature provides step-by-step instructions on how to craft a wide range of specialty coffee beverages. From perfectly frothed milk to precise coffee-to-milk ratios, Barista Mode™ takes the guesswork out of creating your favorite coffeehouse drinks. Simply choose your desired beverage, follow the prompts on the app, and watch as your K-Cafe SMART guides you through each step, ensuring a flawless result every time.

Customizable Strength & Temperature: Your Coffee, Your Way

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART puts you in control of your coffee experience with customizable strength and temperature settings. Choose from five different strength levels, ranging from light to intense, to match your preferred flavor profile. Additionally, you can select from six temperature settings, ensuring your coffee is served at the perfect temperature for your enjoyment. Whether you prefer a milder brew at a lower temperature or a bolder coffee at a higher temperature, the K-Cafe SMART allows you to tailor every cup to your exact liking.

Brew Over Ice: Refreshing Iced Coffee Made Simple

Beat the heat with the Keurig K-Cafe SMART’s Brew Over Ice feature. This dedicated setting optimizes the brewing process for iced coffee, ensuring a full-flavored and refreshing beverage. Simply fill your cup with ice, select the Brew Over Ice option, and let the K-Cafe SMART do the rest. The result is a perfectly chilled iced coffee that’s never watered down or weak.

MultiStream Technology™: Extracting Full Flavor and Aroma

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART utilizes MultiStream Technology™, a revolutionary brewing method that ensures maximum flavor extraction from your K-Cup® pods. Unlike traditional single-stream brewers, the K-Cafe SMART features five precision needles that evenly saturate the coffee grounds with water. This results in a more consistent and flavorful brew, as every bit of coffee is fully extracted. With MultiStream Technology™, you can enjoy a richer, more aromatic cup of coffee with every brew.

Quiet Brew Technology™: Brewing in Peace

Start your day with a moment of tranquility thanks to the Keurig K-Cafe SMART’s Quiet Brew Technology™. This innovative feature minimizes the operating noise of the brewer, allowing you to enjoy a peaceful brewing experience. Whether you’re an early riser who doesn’t want to disturb the household or simply prefer a quieter kitchen environment, Quiet Brew Technology™ ensures that your coffee preparation is as serene as your first sip.

Various Brew Sizes: The Perfect Cup for Every Occasion

Whether you prefer a small, concentrated shot of espresso or a large travel mug full of coffee, the Keurig K-Cafe SMART has you covered. With six different brew sizes to choose from (2 oz, 4 oz, 6 oz, 8 oz, 10 oz, and 12 oz), you can customize the amount of coffee to suit your needs. This versatility makes the K-Cafe SMART ideal for both solo coffee drinkers and households with varying preferences.

Hot & Cold Frother: Elevate Your Froth Game

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART’s integrated milk frother is a standout feature that sets it apart from other single-serve brewers. With three different speeds and a dedicated cold setting, you have complete control over the texture of your froth. Whether you prefer a light and airy foam for your cappuccino or a dense and creamy froth for your latte, the K-Cafe SMART delivers. The frother is also compatible with various types of milk and milk alternatives, allowing you to cater to your dietary preferences and create delicious dairy-free coffee creations.

Large Water Reservoir: Brew More, Refill Less

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART boasts a generous 60-ounce water reservoir, allowing you to brew multiple cups of coffee before needing a refill. This is especially convenient for households with multiple coffee drinkers or those who enjoy several cups throughout the day. The removable reservoir is easy to fill and clean, making maintenance a breeze.

Cleaning

Overall, the Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker is easy to keep clean. The water reservoir, drip tray, frother whisk, K-Cup pod holder, and other parts are removable and dishwasher safe. The frother nozzle requires hand washing. A descaling procedure is recommended every 3-6 months.

Noise Level

The brewer operates at normal volume levels for a home coffee maker. The frothing process increases noise slightly during the 37 seconds of operation. There is some noise when the internal pump pressurizes water during brewing. But noise is not excessive or disruptive.

Drawbacks

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker has a few limitations:

  • Brewing and frothing cannot be performed simultaneously. The brewer completes one task then switches to the other.

  • The milk frother is not dishwasher safe and requires hand washing.

  • Using off-brand pods triggers a delay while the brewer identifies the pod. BrewID technology works optimally with K-Cup pods.

  • The brewer is taller than previous models. Ensure adequate overhead clearance before placing under cabinets.

  • Smart features require wifi connectivity and use of the Keurig app. The brewer has limited capabilities when used standalone.

Best Uses:

  • Brewing coffee, espresso shots, lattes and cappuccinos
  • Making hot or iced coffeehouse drinks
  • Frothing milk for teas and hot chocolate
  • Accommodating multiple coffee drinkers’ preferences

In-depth User Feedback Analysis

With over 500 customer reviews on Amazon, the Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker has received largely positive feedback for its performance and ease of use, though some downsides are noted.

The vast majority of users praise the simplicity of operation and programmable features that allow complete customization of coffee flavor, strength, and temperature. Many love the ability to brew iced coffee and the effectiveness of the built-in frother for making creamy, foamy milk with adjustable temperature and texture. Fans of specialty coffee drinks are especially pleased with the cafe-quality lattes and cappuccinos they can make right at home for a fraction of the cost.

Numerous reviewers remark on the consistently great taste produced by the brewer, attributing it to Keurig’s MultiStream technology that saturates grounds evenly and extracts robust flavor. Many also appreciate the 60oz water reservoir that allows brewing 6-8 cups before refilling.

However, a common complaint is the occasional incomplete brewing cycle that requires restarting the machine. Around 12% of reviewers report this issue happening frequently where the brewer fails to finish brewing. Troubleshooting steps like descaling, cleaning, and rebooting have mixed success in resolving it completely.

Additionally, some note frustration with the BrewID technology that identifies coffee pods. While convenient when using branded Keurig pods, it can delay brew start time by up to 15 seconds when using unrecognized third party or older pods as it searches for pod identification.

A handful of users find the machine’s height too tall to fit comfortably under their kitchen cabinets. And several lament the inability to simultaneously brew coffee while frothing milk.

Overall, the vast majority of feedback is outstanding. When taking into account the advanced features, performance, and ability to deliver premium coffeehouse drinks at home with easy, customized control, most users find the Keurig Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker to be a worthwhile investment that enhances their daily coffee experience.

Pros:

  • Makes delicious coffee from K-Cups
  • Built-in milk frother for lattes and cappuccinos
  • BrewID technology optimizes brew settings
  • Highly customizable brew strength and temperature
  • Convenient smart features via app

Cons:

  • Cannot simultaneously brew coffee and froth milk
  • Frother requires hand washing
  • Brewing off-brand pods causes delay
  • Tall height may not fit under cabinets
  • Smart features require wifi connectivity

 Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker

Value

At around $230, the K-Cafe SMART is priced similarly to other high-end single serve brewers. When factoring in the built-in milk frothing abilities, smart features, and performance, it offers strong value for the money. The ability to make specialty drinks at home offsets the higher price tag.

Conclusion

The Keurig K-Cafe SMART is an excellent choice for coffee lovers who also enjoy specialty milk-based drinks like cappuccinos and lattes. It combines simple one-touch operation for daily coffee with advanced smart features and specialty drink customization through the Keurig app. The BrewID technology and programmable features make it easy to consistently brew your favorite coffee and milk froth drinks customized just the way you like. While not inexpensive, the quality, performance, and convenience of the K-Cafe SMART make it a worthwhile investment for coffee and espresso enthusiasts.

 Keurig K-Cafe SMART Single Serve Coffee Maker

Specifications

  • Brew Sizes: 2 oz, 4 oz, 6 oz, 8 oz, 10 oz, 12 oz
  • Brewing Technology: Keurig MultiStream 5-nozzle technology
  • Water Reservoir Capacity: 60 oz removable reservoir
  • Strength Control: 5 intensity levels
  • Temperature Control: 6 temperature settings from lukewarm to extra hot
  • Touch Display: Full color touch display screen
  • Milk Frother: Built-in rapid milk frother with 3 temperature settings (cold, low, high)
  • Smart Features: WiFi enabled, BrewID recognizes K-Cup pods, app connectivity for remote brewing and customization
  • Compatible With: K-Cup pods including Keurig universal reusable coffee filter pods
  • Dimensions: 12.1” W x 11” D x 17.2” H
  • Weight: 13.17 lbs
  • Power: 1200 watts
  • Voltage: 110-120V
  • Warranty: 1 year limited warranty

What’s Included:

  • K-Cafe coffee maker unit
  • 60 oz water reservoir
  • Drip tray
  • Frothing pitcher
  • Frothing whisk
  • 12 K-Cup pods
  • Water filter handle