Grounds in Your Keurig Coffee? How to Fix It Today

coffee grounds in keurig coffee

No one likes it when stray coffee grounds end up in their coffee mug. Chances are, you’ve been there, and it can be very frustrating to wake up and expect a perfect cup of coffee only to find yourself chewing the grounds mixed in. But, before you give up on your Keurig, let's talk about a few solutions to this annoying problem. 

To prevent coffee grounds from getting into a Keurig coffee, gently tap and shake your Keurig, run a few water-only cycles, and give it a good cleaning. That should loosen and clear out the grounds stuck in the machine.

While the quick fix might do the trick most times, if the grounds sneak back into your cup after a few uses there are a few more steps and tips that can help keep them out of your cup for good. Ready? Let's take a look and figure out which trick will work for you. 

In this article: 

Why Coffee Grounds are in your Keurig Coffee

How to Fix Coffee Grounds in Keurig Coffee

Three Tips (To Prevent it From Happening in the Future)

Why Coffee Grounds are in your Keurig Coffee

When you're using a Keurig or any other single-serve coffee maker, it can be a nasty surprise to find grounds floating in your coffee cup. But why does this happen? There are a few reasons, including: 

  • Dirty Needle – Your Keurig has a needle that punctures the K-Cup to allow water to flow through and brew your coffee. If coffee grounds build up and clog this needle, it can cause a backup that leaks grounds into your cup during the next few brews. 
  • Faulty or Damaged K-Cup – Sometimes, the issue isn't with the Keurig machine itself, but with the K-Cup. If the K-Cup has even a small puncture or tear, it can allow coffee grounds to escape and fall into your mug. 
  • Overfilled K-Cup – If you’re using a refillable K-Cup, there’s a chance you might have overfilled it. If you’re trying to get a stronger cup of coffee and accidentally pack too much in, the water can force the ground out and into your cup as it runs through. (To get a stronger cup without this problem try choosing a small brew size and running multiple brews to fill up one mug). 
  • Residue Build-Up – Over time, coffee grounds start to build up in all of your machine’s nooks and crannies, especially if you don’t clean it regularly. This build-up might occasionally shed, sending older, trapped grounds into your fresh cup.

Related: How to Use Keurig Pods More than Once

How to Fix Coffee Grounds in Keurig Coffee

cup of espresso next to a cup of ground coffee beans on a table

CC: Photo by 🇸🇮 Janko Ferlič on Unsplash 

I know when I get up in the morning, the last thing I want is coffee with a crunch. Finding grounds in my cup is very frustrating, especially if I’m in a hurry and it keeps happening. Luckily, I’ve found a few ways to fix this annoying issue, including: 

Check Your K-Cups

  • Inspect the K-Cup – Before anything else, take a look at your K-Cup. If it's damaged or has holes in more places than it should, it might be the cause. 
  • Don't Overfill Reusable K-Cups – If you're using a reusable K-Cup, ensure you're not overfilling it by only going to the recommended line. The grounds need space to expand and let water flow.

Clean the Needle(s)

  • Turn Off and Unplug Your Keurig – Make sure your machine is off and unplugged. 
  • Find the Needle(s) – These are the sharp parts that puncture the K-Cup to allow water to flow through. 
  • Clean the Needles – Use a paperclip to gently clear away any obstructions or coffee grounds. Some models come with a special tool for this. 
  • Run a Water Cycle – After cleaning, run a water-only cycle without a K-Cup to ensure you flush out any dislodged grounds.

Clean Your Keurig Regularly

  • Descaling – This process removes calcium deposits or scale that can build up inside a coffee maker over time. Use a Keurig descaling solution or white vinegar and water. 
  • Clean the Exit Needle – This is the area where the brewed coffee comes out. A clogged exit needle can cause coffee grounds to back up into your cup. 
  • Regularly Rinse the Reservoir – This can help prevent any residue build-up that might lead to coffee grounds ending up in your cup.

Related: What's Inside Keurig Descaling Solution?

Get a New One

If you're still finding grounds in your coffee, it may be time for a new coffee maker. If you've had your Keurig for less than a year, its warranty should cover a free replacement. You can contact Keurig customer service here.

Related: Does Keurig Replace Broken Machines?

Three Tips (To Prevent It from Happening in the Future)
two friends having coffee

Remember, prevention is key when it comes to ensuring your coffee is smooth and ground-free. Below, you’ll find a few quick tips to help ensure this problem doesn’t happen again going forward. 

Tip One – Schedule Regular Machine Maintenance

Even if everything seems fine, make it a habit to clean and descale your Keurig every 3 to 6 months, depending on your usage and water hardness, to keep it free from mineral buildup.

Tip Two – Mind the Grind for Reusables

If you’re grinding your own beans for use in a reusable K-Cup, always go for a coarser grind over a finer one. Fine grounds are much more likely to make it through the filter and into your cup. Additionally, fill the reusable K-Cup to the recommended line or about ¾ full. This allows room for the coffee grounds to expand without overflowing.

Tip Three – Check Your Reusable Filters

Over time, the mesh on your reusable filters can degrade, so you want to look at them to spot any signs of wear or tear. If you notice any fraying or holes, it’s time to think about getting a new one. 

This article was written by Sara. You can learn more about Sara on our About the Team page. 

Stay Caffeinated!




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